What’s better, old stuff or new stuff? It’s a question the internet is constantly struggling with, and it’s what leads to (a) endless revivals of beloved properties and (b) weird backlashes against said revivals.
A newly-announced reboot of 1980s sci-fi space-fantasy feline-refugee cartoon ThunderCats has drawn ire for not resembling the ThunderCats of old. It’s a shame, because it looks pretty good, as long as you can get past the fact that its producer Victor Courtright has literally the worst hair of any man on the planet.
It’s quite a departure from the original, but looks like a lot of fun, with animation much more like modern shows like Steven Universe, while it’s also obviously being made with reverence to the original series.
That’s not stopped people losing their minds with anger though. Adults, too. Fully-grown, voting adults are apoplectic with rage that ThunderCats – a cartoon that, beyond going “Hur hur, wasn’t ThunderCats good, I liked the cheetah lady, hur hur”, nobody has thought about for decades – is a bit different now.
There’s even a petition, with a mighty sixteen signatories, attempting to stop the cartoon being broadcast.
The thing is, with ThunderCats… Looking back… Is that… It… was quite strange. Cat people in swimming costumes fighting Egyptian mummies with swords. It contained Snarf, a character so annoying he made Scrappy-Doo look like Optimus Prime, and there was at least one episode where Lion-O tried to stop a flood by hitting a wave with his sword. That is, by any standard, a rubbish way to stop a flood. It’s like shooting a house with a bow and arrow to stop it being on fire.
If you showed a 2018 eight-year-old the original ThunderCats and the new ThunderCats Roar side-by-side, they’d watch the hell out of the new one and probably ignore the old one as a crappy-looking relic of a bygone age.
Of course, YouTube is filling up with videos of livid 35-year-old men doing the opposite, claiming this new, fun show is somehow retroactively making their childhoods worse. These aren’t people who’ve been obsessively watching ThunderCats for the intervening years, of course – they’re just annoyed that the world isn’t exactly like it was when they were young.
INTERNET MEN: Hey, we love ThunderCats. Remember ThunderCats? That was great. Why isn’t more stuff ThunderCats?
STUDIO EXEC: Let’s make another ThunderCats. People like ThunderCats.
FILMMAKER: Cool! Of course, it isn’t 1985 anymore so this ThunderCats will be slightly different.
INTERNET MEN: NO NO SHUT UP WE DIDN’T WANT THAT, WE WANTED EXACTLY THE SAME THING AGAIN, INCLUDING BEING EIGHT YEARS OLD AND BEING AS EASILY DAZZLED AND INNOCENT AND ENTIRELY RESPONSIBILITY-FREE AS THAT ENTAILS.
ThunderCats Roar will be on Cartoon Network in 2019.