|Lord of the Snows|
|Original Airdate||September 25, 1985|
|Previous Episode||The Doomgaze|
|Next Episode||The Spaceship Beneath the Sands|
|All Episodes||Episode Guide|
The ThunderCats track a falling meteor of Thundrillium, their power source, to Hook Mountain - the icy landscape ruled by Snowman and his giant cat Snowmeow. Lion-O and Snarf offer friendship in exchange for the meteor, but Snowman wages a battle for the "prize." Lion-O uses his power as Lord of "Cats" to command Snowmeow obey him instead of his master. The Mutants enlist Vultureman and his Flying Machine to steal the meteor, but Snarf and Snowmeow join forces to destroy the sky craft, sending the evil forces running. Lion-O saves Snowman from the Bottomless Chasm and friendship is pledged and accepted.
Lion-O is motivated to set out on an independent mission to find Thundrillium, essential for the ThunderCats' existence. Despite the threat of danger, he sees the journey and its successful conclusion as a necessary personal mission to prove his competence and certify his passage into adulthood. When confronted by Snowman, he offers a pact of honor, but Snowman's reply is a test of combat to see if Lion-O can gain his respect and be worthy of such an alliance. Jaga once more teaches Lion-O that it is intelligence in conjunction with strength that succeeds. Faithful to his belief in the Code of Thundera, Lion-O rescues the defeated Snowman from death in order to gain his respect and initiate the alliance.
Achievement motivation is the desire to master problems, improve skills and abilities, and to do well in a particular area. It involves a spontaneous evaluation of one's performance against standards of excellence and an experience of satisfaction when the performance is successful. One element in children's level of achievement motivation is their attributions concerning success and failure in a task. Four attributions or reasons for behavior and outcome can be identified: ability, effort, task difficulty, and luck. These causative factors influence children's reactions to their behavior and their expectations about future performances. They can be considered in two dimensions: internal/external and stable/unstable. Task difficulty and luck are causes external to the individual and if outcome is attributed to those causes, effort to achieve is less likely to be made than if the outcome is attributed to ability and effort, which are causes controlled by the individual. Ability and task difficulty are stable causes, whereas effort and luck are unstable and changeable. Attributions about success and failure made to a stable cause are more likely to effect expectancies about future performance than those made to unstable causes. For example, a child who attributes outcome to his ability will expect success or failure in a similar task if his ability is considered adequate or not. And the child in this instance is likely to work hard, persist in the task, and try to succeed. A child who attributes outcome to task difficulty will expect success or failure if the task is considered easy or hard. On the other hand, a child who attributes outcome to unstable factors like the amount of effort made or luck will have uncertain expectancies about his performance (Weiner, 1974).
Using the telescopic equipment inside Cats Lair, the ThunderCats track a meteor as it enters the atmosphere of Third Earth. Panthro's examination of it reveals it to be made completely of Thundrillium, indicating that it must have been a chunk of Thundera which broke off when the planet exploded. With their own Thundrillium fuel sources dwindling, the ThunderCats try desperately to grab the meteor using the lair's tracking beam but fail. It ends up crashing onto Hook Mountain.
Not one to give up easily, Lion-O sets off to retrieve the meteor, with Snarf secretly tailing him. When he starts his ascent up the snowy mountain, he notices Snarf, and while he is initially upset, he agrees to let the nursemaid accompany him. The two ThunderCats are unaware that they are being spied on by the Mutant, Jackalman.
The scrawny Mutant reports his findings to Slithe back at Castle Plun-Darr, who sees this as an opportunity to kidnap Lion-O. The Mutants then board Vultureman's Flying Machine and zoom off to Hook Mountain. Jackalman however, not having sufficient faith in the vehicle, decides to remain at the castle.
With their own Thundrillium supplies used up, the ThunderCats sit in darkness inside the powerless Cats Lair. While Panthro at first feels that they all should remain there, waiting until Lion-O summons them, he changes his mind when Cheetara senses that the young lord could be in peril. The Cats board the ThunderTank and speed off to Hook Mountain.
After a perilous ascent, including overcoming avalanches, blizzards, and precarious peaks, Lion-O and Snarf eventually make it to the top of Hook Mountain where they stare in awe at the magnificent ice Castle of the Snowmen. As they approach it, the drawbridge lowers and the Snowman steps out on top of the fierce Snowmeow, and carrying an ice lance and ice shield. The Snowman scoffs at Lion-O's friendship offer and denies him the meteor, instead challenging him to combat.
As the two clash, Lion-O finds it difficult to hold his own against the stronger and more experienced opponent, yet he does not give up. At that moment, Jaga appears and prompts Lion-O that Snowmeow is in fact a cat. Lion-O then commands the big cat to halt and it stops whilst in the middle of a charge. The cat then starts running towards the Bottomless Chasm. Before Snowmeow can reach the edge of the chasm, Lion-O orders it to stop again but the action of stopping suddenly inadvertently ends up throwing the Snowman onto a ledge, deep in the chasm.
Lion-O then descends down the chasm by anchoring a line from his Claw Shield to the Sword of Omens in order to save the Snowman, who was injured in the fall. Without warning, the Mutants make an entrance and try to yank the Sword of Omens, hoping to trap Lion-O in the chasm forever. However, Snowmeow attacks the Flying Machine, forcing the Mutants to release the sword. As soon as Lion-O makes it to the top with the Snowman, Vultureman showers him with a barrage of gunfire. Avoiding the fire, Lion-O summons his friends and within moments, they reach the battle zone in the ThunderTank. A few laser shots from the tank sends the Mutants packing.
Grateful to Lion-O for saving his life, the Snowman accepts his friendship as well as allowing Lion-O to take the meteor. With the meteor loaded onto the tank, the Cats say goodbye to Snowman and Snowmeow and head for home.
- In this episode, the ThunderCats' Thundrillium supplies are so low that they get depleted half way through the episode. This could be due to Grune draining the fuel source when he invaded Cats Lair two episode earlier in The Ghost Warrior.
- The episode also features cameos by the Berbils, the Warrior Maidens including Willa, the Living Ooze and Unicorns. None of them have a speaking role and are only shown briefly when the meteor flies above them before crashing.
- This is the first episode in which Vultureman appears along with his Flying Machine. While Bob McFadden provided the voice of the character in his first four appearances, Earl Hammond took on the role of Vultureman's voice from Sixth Sense until the end of the series.
- After being prompted by Jaga, Lion-O orders Snowmeow to stop and the big cat complies. Snarf then mentions that Lion-O has power over all cats. This marks the first and only time during the course of the series that Lion-O would use this power.
- When warning Lion-O about the natives of Hook Mountain, Tygra refers to them as "Snowmen", in the plural, suggesting that they are a race of beings, but strangely only one member of the race, the Snowman, ever appears in this and future episodes.
- Before Lion-O departs for Hook Mountain, Cheetara places a red cloak over his shoulders. Lion-O would be depicted wearing the same cloak during his coronation in the future episode Lion-O's Anointment Final Day: The Trial of Evil.
- Vultureman and his Flying Machine's unexpected appearance in this episode is rather mysterious and is never explained.
- The moat around Castle Plun-Darr is shown to be inhabited by fish and an octopus like creature.
- When the Mutants are talking inside Castle Plun-Darr, the right earring-like flap is missing from Monkian's helmet.
Panthro: It's pure Thundrillium!
Tygra: You're right.
Panthro (laughing): It must have been part of Thundera! 100% Thundrillium!
WilyKat: Hey - what's happened to all the lights?
Panthro: Not frightened of the dark, are you?
WilyKat: No. I, I - just wondered, that's all.
Lion-O: ThunderCats, ho!
Panthro, Cheetara, Tygra: ThunderCats, forever!
Slithe: Vultureman will take us in his flying machine.
Jackalman: Is it safe?
Slithe: You cowardly, sniveling dog! Stay at home if you cannot face your destiny
Snarf: We did it! We conquered Hook Mountain!
Lion-O: That part was, uh, easy. This looks harder. Come on, conqueror. Snowman: Who intrudes on the Kingdom of the Snowmen?
Lion-O: Lion-O, Lord of the ThunderCats. I and my squire come in peace. We have braved Hook Mountain to meet you.
Snowman: Luck was with you, young ThunderCat. Why are you here?
Lion-O: To find the meteor that landed on the mountain!
Snowman: Everything on Hook Mountain is ours, whelp!
Snarf: The ThunderCats, Lion-O; call them!
Lion-O: That would be admitting failure.
Snarf: Who cares about failure? We need them!
Lion-O: It's a matter of honor. I cannot call them.
Jaga: (appears): Perhaps you've overreached yourself this time, son.
Lion-O: I have to fight with honor. I must earn this Snowman's friendship alone.
Lion-O: I came here to gain allies and claim the meteor. I cannot make friends with a dead man. I must go after him.
This episode was released on the following media:
- ThunderCats Vol.6: Lord of the Snows - f.h.e. release
- ThunderCats Vol. 6 & 7: Doomgaze and Terror of Hammerhand & Spaceship Beneath the Sands and Lord of the Snows - The Video Collection release
- WEINER, B. (1974). Achievement motivation and attribution theory. Morristown, N.J.: General Learning Press.
- Lord of the Snows on IMDb
- ThunderCats 1985 cartoon series on Wikipedia
- Dan Maruschak's Review of "Lord of the Snows"
- ThunderCats on ThunderCats.org