The last issue saw He-Man laying down the kind of beating that would be reserved for prime time and not a Hanna-Barbara after school cartoon.
Skeletor’s minions felt the brunt, but the man with no face had the last laugh, as he finally became the most powerful person in the universe. There hasn’t been a whole lot of ThunderCats action in the first two installments as He-Man had taken center stage. Now that the ‘Cats are in the spotlight, there’s only one question: Is it good?
He-Man/ThunderCats #3 (DC Comics)
With the first two issues of the series writers Rob David and Lloyd Goldfine showed us what it would be like if you took a G-rated superhero show and turned the heroes and villains loose. The result was a comic that was much more enjoyable and surprising than I would have thought had I just come across the title while browsing. While they added a little blood to the proceedings, they still managed to keep a similar tone to the story and characters, as not to be too reinventive and unfamiliar to fans. With the third issue we get to see them work the ThunderCats into the mix and learn if their treatment will be able to live up to the previous He-Man-centric chapters.
Honestly, I wasn’t as big a fan of the ThunderCats as I was He-Man but I watched enough to know David and Goldfine were able to translate the team’s personalities and dynamics to the page in this issue just as well as they did with He-Man. There’s a bit more humor with the ThunderCats than there was with He-Man. Most of the battle dialogue wouldn’t seem out of place in an episode of the cartoon, minus Skeletor kicking Lion-O in the junk and remarking on it. Unfortunately Snarff doesn’t get blown up during the battle, but the rumble between the ThunderCat’s entire team and Skeletor was a neat juxtaposition of last issue where we saw He-Man stand alone against all the minions of the title’s two villains.
The book looks good, once again. Artist Freddie E. Williams proved he knew how to draw the “Masters of the Universe” characters and make the action look good. In this issue he proved the ThunderCats weren’t a challenge he couldn’t handle either. There’s a lot of detail in all the panels, especially near the end of the book, when they are littered with a crowd of recognizable figures from one of the shows. I like how he draws Skeletor and actually gives him a menacing air, something I don’t think I could ever say about his cartoon counterpart. The colors by Jeremy Colwell make the art standout even more. There’s a huge palette being used here, with the colors used on characters really having a pop that makes them stand out among the action and adds to their larger than life cartoon personas.
Is it Good?
Once again I enjoyed the book more than I thought I would have. I didn’t find the ThunderCats as compelling as when He-Man/Prince Adam was the focus, but there was a limited amount of screen time to divvy up between the team. There’s plenty of action and no denying that the book looks tremendous, especially it’s standout use of color. It’ll be interesting to see how the book moves forward after the end of this one, but overall the series is engaging me and making me want to come back and see what’s next.