|November 8, 1985|
|Original Airdate||November 11, 1985|
|Writer(s)||Douglas Bernstein & Denis Markell|
|Previous Episode||Sword in a Hole|
|Next Episode||Lion-O's Anointment First Day: The Trial of Strength|
|All Episodes||Episode Guide|
The ThunderKittens discover a Magical Harp, strum it and release Charr-Nin, a genie who has been imprisoned inside. Mumm-Ra sees this action in his cauldron, transforms into a Bolkin and thus disguised seizes the harp. Mumm-Ra promises the genie freedom if only he destroys the ThunderCats. Complying with Mumm-Ra's wish, Charr-Nin imprisons Lion-O in the center of Third Earth and later brings the ThunderKittens to him. Lion-O directs the ThunderKittens to distract Charr-Nin allowing him time to free himself and summon the other ThunderCats. But is able to capture them all in magical bonds. He demands his freedom from Mumm-Ra, who reneges on the deal. When the two fight, Charr-Nin's powers are weakened, allowing the ThunderCats to escape. They leave Mumm-Ra and Charr-Nin for dead, but Mumm-Ra rises again, for he is ever-living.
WilyKit and WilyKat give in to the alluring promises of gratification offered by the genie Charr-Nin. Unsuspecting of his motives and reliability, they bring him to the Cats' Lair. Once there, however, Charr-Nin is transformed from something pleasurable to something dangerous. For he himself falls prey to the allures of freedom offered by Mumm-Ra, and he turns against the ThunderCats. It takes extraordinary events for the ThunderCats to extricate themselves from his magic. Only when Mumm-Ra and Charr-Nin square off in a duel of powers can they escape.
We must be careful when presented with promises of instant and easy gratification, which appear to be pure gift and have no strings attached. We must always evaluate with reason and responsibility the motives of others, especially if they are strangers, who offer us something for nothing. Such offers are most often illusory and the person will expect something from us. In some cases, the promises can be dangerous, if the person is out only for his own gain. It is not in our own best interests to accept anything from a stranger. And we should always be suspicious when we encounter situations that appear to be offering something for nothing.
One day while surfing through the forest, WilyKit and WilyKat hear strange harp music. Trying to locate its source, the two fall into a hole in the ground and come across a golden harp playing by itself. As they pull it out of the the ground a genie materializes and introduces himself as Charr-Nin, the genie of the Great Golden Harp. He goes on to inform the ThunderKittens that from now on they are his masters and he will grant their every wish. All they have to do is play the harp and make their wish. For their first wish, WilyKit and WilyKat wish to get out of the pit and Charr-Nin complies.
Meanwhile, Mumm-Ra who had witnesses the whole interaction between the ThunderKittens and Charr-Nin from his cauldron, decides to use the genie to his advantage. He turns himself into a Bolkin and makes his way to Cats Lair where he asks WilyKit and WilyKat for a bed to spend the night as he is weary from his travel. Once inside the Lair, Mumm-Ra uses a pendant to hypnotize the ThunderKittens and orders them to take him to the Golden Harp. He summons Charr-Nin by strumming the harp and makes a bargain with him. He promises to free Charr-Nin from his harp prison if the genie succeeds in destroying the ThunderCats.
Having completed his task, Mumm-Ra vanishes back to his pyramid. The ThunderKittens awaken from their trance and have no recollection of what just happened. They take the harp to Lion-O as a present and tell him all about Charr-Nin and his wishes. While initially thinking of it as a prank, Lion-O nevertheless plays the harp. Charr-Nin materializes but immediately makes Lion-O disappear in a cloud of smoke. The genie claims that he simply granted Lion-O's wish. Concerned about their leader, the ThunderKittens ask Charr-Nin to take them to where Lion-O is and the genie grants their wish. Suddenly they all find themselves at the center of Third Earth where Charr-Nin has tied up Lion-O and binds WilyKit and WilyKat as well.
In an attempt to escape, the ThunderKittens pretend to doubt Charr-Nin's powers and dare him to bring them a Snake Bird. While he is gone, Lion-O tries to break out of his bonds and manages to free himself just as the genie returns. Lion-O quickly summons the other ThunderCats before engaging in battle with Charr-Nin but the genie proves to be more powerful and traps Lion-O in a force field. The other ThunderCats arrive swiftly in the ThunderTank but Charr-Nin successfully defeats all of them, binding them using their own weapons.
As soon as all the ThunderCats are captured, Mumm-Ra appears. Charr-Nin tells him that he has fulfilled his part of the bargain and now it is Mumm-Ra's turn to release him from the harp but Mumm-Ra laughs and reneges on his promise. Furious at his betrayal, Charr-Nin attacks Mumm-Ra and a great battle ensues between the two. The intense effort of countering Mumm-Ra's magic weakens Char-Nin's hold on the ThunderCats who use the opportunity to escape from the collapsing cave. The Cats drive back home in the ThunderTank assuming that both Mumm-Ra and Charr-Nin are dead. However, shortly after they leave, Mumm-Ra emerges from the ground laughing demonically.
- The story of this episode is roughly similar to the old folk tale of "Aladdin" from "The Arabian Nights".
- When this episode was broadcast in the U.K., all the scenes showing Panthro using his Nunchucks were cut. This was because Nunchucks are a banned weapon in the U.K.
- This is the third episode in which we see Tygra getting tied up using his own Bolo Whip. The first two were was "Mongor" and "Dimension Doom". Enemies would go on to use this same method to disable him in future episodes like "ThunderCubs - Part IV", and "Chain of Loyalty".
- When Lion-O summons the other ThunderCats, the Cat Signal from the Sword of Omens blasts through the ground. The tunnel that it leaves behind is what Panthro uses to drive the ThunderTank to Lion-O's location.
- When he gets beaten by Charr-Nin and is lying on the ground, tied up with the Bolo Whip, Tygra's boots are erroneously shown to be covering his toes completely.
Lion-O: I'll get out of here. When I do, you and your harp will be singing a different tune.
Charr-Nin: Here, ThunderKitten. I have something for you.
(presents the snake-bird to WilyKit)
Lion-O: (gets a hold of the Sword) And I have something for you!
Lion-O: Well, thanks for getting us out of a hole.
(everyone else groans and laughs)
WilyKat: Let him go!
WilyKit: You promised to grant us our wishes. You said you'd obey us. Free him!
Charr-Nin: I am your master now! It is you who must obey me!
Snarf: I got the food. Where's your Bolkin friend?
WilyKit: That's funny.
WilyKat: He was here.
Snarf: Is this your idea of a joke, snarf, snarf?
WilyKit: No! He was here a minute ago. He just, disappeared.
Snarf: As if I haven't got enough to do without you two seeing things.
This episode was released on the following media:
- The Evil Harp of Charr-Nin at IMDb
- ThunderCats 1985 cartoon series on Wikipedia
- ThunderCats on ThunderCats.org