Friday, December 10, 2004

Thundarr the Barbarian

I came across this gem the other day in the kids section of an old 'mom and pop' video store. You know, the store that has titles on the shelf that you won't find at Blockbuster. Stuff that hasn't been rented in YEARS. One such tape was Thundarr.

I had heard of this title before, but I don't think I ever watched it. Man, what I was missing!

Thundarr. Look at that name. I like the extra 'r.' It just looks cooler with the extra 'r.' Let's try that with other cartoon icons: Hagarr the Horrible... hmmm. My brain seems to be stuck, the only other cartoon I can think of is Pogo.

So, Thundarr stands alone (or with Hagarr, actually) and that is pretty fitting. He is a truly unique character. It is as if someone ate every fantasy movie, TV show and comic book and then vomited Thundarr!

Based on the title, there is some OBVIOUS Conan the Barbarian similarities, but he also looks a lot like He-Man (whom he predates.)

Like He-Man, Thundarr has a buddy who is a cat. Only, unlike Cringer/Battlecat, Thundarr's sidekick doesn't let him ride him. Or maybe he does and they cut that scene out.

Still, Ookla rides his own horse. Oh yeah, the cat/man's name is Ookla! The cast list is starting to look like a useless hand in Scrabble!

Thundarr also has a female sidekick (Ariel) who seems a little like Teela. She too wears a once piece swimsuit all the time. EVEN WHEN SHE RIDES HER HORSE! The girl must sleep in a pool of aloe.

Thundarr also has a lightsaber, only he doesn't call it a lightsaber and he wears it on his wrist.

The show takes place 2000 years after mankind is wiped out. Yup, we are all dead. We died in 1994. I can only hope that was AFTER we all got a chance to see the live action Flintstones movie.

I saw the episode entitled 'Secret of the Black Pearl', not to be confused with Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl or even that black lady named Pearl that lives on Secret Lane.

In the episode Thundarr and company travel to Manhat. Manhat is the ruins of Manhattan. I wish they had gone to Hollywo, Memphi, Detro, Miam, Bosto and Chica as well, but one ruined city was enough. On one of the walls a torn poster for a Jaws sequel (I think it was Jaws 9.) Oddly enough, buildings around it have crumbled but the poster survived. If only we had made the buildings out of semi glossy paper, this whole 1994 thing could have been averted!

Thundarr meets some rat people who are terrorizing some old guy. Then Thundarr fights dozens of rat people including a few who have motorcycles.

After that a boss villain named Gemini arrives in Manhat.

Using magic, Gemini makes the Statue of Liberty rise up and fight Thundarr!

Thundarr defeats the Statue of Liberty, Ookla flies a helicopter and justice is served to the rat people.

I LOVED THIS TAPE!

Now, I just have to wait for the live action Thundarr.

8 comments:

  1. Gene Hackman is so cool that copyrights infringe him!!

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  2. I am the TV executive who created Thundarr. Originally, I proposed the character would be named Thundarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. I thought all those extra "r" s would excite the kids or at leat think the show was about rail roads. Thundarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr would also wear a bat cape and shoot webs out of his hands. Very cutting edge!!

    Other original ideas I had included making his cat partner an overweight lazy feline, who ate lasagna and hated Mondays. I also fought (but lost) the battle to make Ariel a tiny mermaid.

    In the episode where they travel to the ruins of Manhat, I wanted Manhat to be a futuristic prison where the president was trapped after his helicopter crashed there. I also thought it would be cool to have Kurt Russell instead of Thundarrrrrrrrr save him.

    I also proposed a recurring joke, where Ariel would ask Thundarrrrrrrr to kick a football, but she would pull it away at the last minute, causing him to fall on his but.

    If my ideas were approved, this would have been the most groundbreaking, cutting-edge show, ever.

    Also, I'm a complete idiot.

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  3. You know what would be THUNDARR-IFIC??? If Evel Knievel had surivived until the futuristic year of 1994 and joined the motorcycle gang that terrorized the ilse of Manhat. But because there was no gas on the deserted island, he was forced to ride one of those old-timey 1920s bicycles with the giant front wheel. Anyways, Knivel tried to impress THUNDARR by jumping over the Empire State Building, but because it only 2 feet rubble, THUNDARR was not very impressed. So Knievel jumped over the Hudson to river to New Jersey. THUNDARR was so impressed he asked Knievel to join his gang, and THUNDARR, Ariel, Ookla and Knievel ruled the future. Oh man that would be SSSSSSWWWWWWWEEEEEETTTTTTT!!!!!!!!

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  4. I remember living in the 1980s and watching this cartoon. Thundarr terrified me because 1994 seemed like such a terrible place in the future. I remember Thundarr living in a scary 1994 where baseball players could go on strike, and America was ruled by a Republican Congress. The Flintstones were no longer a cartoon, but a live action movie. John Travolta was no longer a has-been but beginning a comeback with a string of hits. Also Ace of Base and movies about morons passed for entertainment. I remember Thundarr saying he thought the popularity of Scottie Pippen, Newt Gingrich, and Jeanne Garafolo would last forever. Wow, that show really was a scary glimpse into the future. Thank goodness this version of 1994 never came to pass.

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  5. Come on, Sweetie! Another superhero article? I have seen The Incredible Hulk, Godzilla and a Superman doll!

    These are funny, but do an article for us gals, too!

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  6. Don't forget about Thundarr's nemesis, Skeletorrrrrrrrr.

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  7. Good point Sarah,

    Next week we will have the following 'women themed' articles:

    Oprah:When she was fatter
    How to braid your hair
    How to un-braid your hair
    Hello Kitty toys from the dollar store
    Gloria Stienham eats a Fish Filet

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  8. Good, that I will look forward to it LOL!

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