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Cat in Tundercat

ThunderCats is an American animated television series developed and produced by Rankin/Bass Productions, debuting in 1985 based on the characters created by Tobin "Ted" Wolf. The animation was provided by Pacific Animation Corporation, the working name for a collective of Japanese studios prominently including Topcraft, a group who would later go on to form Studio Ghibli. Season 1 of the show aired in 1985 (65 episodes), followed by a TV movie entitled ThunderCats - HO! in 1986. Seasons 2, 3, and 4 followed a new format of twenty episodes each, starting with a five-part story; these aired from 1987 to 1988, 1988 to 1989, and 1989 to 1990, respectively.

Set against a backdrop juxtaposing science-fiction and fantasy elements, the ThunderCats series tells a good-versus-evil tale of mythic proportions, featuring an equal mix of high-technology and magic, hand-to-hand combat, and a central core of championed values. Its anthropomorphic heroes, the ThunderCats, are pitted against a rag-tag assortment of villains and a demonic wizard named Mumm-Ra on a planet known as Third Earth.

Throughout most of the series, Third Earth is used as the main stage for all the ThunderCats adventures, though it is never made clear whether this world is meant to be a future version of our Earth, or an alternate reality or even Earth of the past. There are several references — both visual and verbal — indicating that there once was an ancient Egyptian culture on Third Earth (hinting that it may be a world of our future). King Arthur existed in the past of this Earth however, which lends to either a future of our world or an alternate one.

After their original destination proves to be beyond reach, the closest planet they can survive on is the 3rd planet out from a star in the next solar system. But Mumm-Ra also says that it was originally First Earth a thousand years ago in one of the earliest episodes.


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