Marvel/Star Comics (February, 1986)“Tears Of Sunrise” WRITER: David Micheline PENCILER: Jim Mooney INKER: Brett Breeding COLORIST: Petra Scotese LETTERER: Janice Chiang EDITOR: Mike Carlin EXECUTIVE EDITOR: Tom DeFalco
Despite Snarf’s warning to double-check the safety of local foods, Lion-O eats a berry that turns out to be the poisonous “Tears Of Sunrise”. If Lion-O can’t break the fever by sunrise he will die. Snarf goes to the wreckage of the ship to find Lion-O’s old teddy bear and gets caught by the mutants, who set a trap for the other Thundercats. Jaga talks Lion-O into going into battle, the result giving him the strength to fight off the Tears Of Sunrise. However, Mumm-Ra sees Lion-O and Jaga talking, which gives him a wicked plan.
What they got right: Lion-O never went through the life experiences that allow him to mature, so doing childish things like playing and eating something he shouldn’t is in line with his character this early in the series.
What they got wrong: Instead of adapting the second episode like they did the first, there’s some heavy exposition dumped here. Meeting the Berbils, the Cat’s Lair, the Thundertank, Mumm-Ra transforming just to show off…they would have been better off just doing the second episode. We’ll be seeing more adaptations as well as more original stories as this run continues but adapting “The Unholy Alliance” and “Berbils” (the other two establishing episodes) might have been a better idea before doing original stories. Maybe they wouldn’t have needed adaptations afterwards. Also, the Thundertank is drawn correctly, but not used correctly. They drew the front seats but nobody sits in them and the shell never closes. They all ride in the back as if that’s the control center of the tank and as a result it’s drawn larger than the actual Thundertank from this version.
Recommendation: This is a good original story that shows Lion-O’s progression, and I like the speech at the end about not forgetting your past as Lion-O secretly holds on to his stuffed “doofle” (the Thundarian version of a teddy bear). If your a fan of the original show pick this one up.