ThunderCats was one of my most favorite cartoons growing up! I am a child of the 80’s like many of you collector’s out there, and like many of you, I grew up playing with the original LJN Thundercats action figures. When Super7 announced that they were making an Ultimate version of the LJN Toy Lion-O last summer, I was over the moon with excitement and happiness!! Well, Wave 6 is finalizing shipping to collectors, and I have gotten all the figures finally in hand! We have covered Wave 6 Toy Variant Monkian in an extensive in Hand Review, so if you haven’t checked it out, you can read it here: Super7 ThunderCats Ultimates Monkian Toy Variant Review (toyhabits.com). Be sure to be on the lookout for our Mumm-Ra review coming soon as well.
Since this is a Vintage LJN inspired Lion-O, I could not help but start this out with review without posing this new Super7 Lion-O with my vintage Snarf and power ring in-front of the classic White ThunderCats burst to start us off!
I have a huge vintage toy collection, and my vintage LJN Lion-O is my favorite figure in my entire collection because the Baroness of Toys gave it to me as a gift many years ago, so i absolutely cherish him! Well, I am so happy to say that I now have my second favorite figure, the Super7 ThunderCats Ultimates Lion-O LJN Inspired Toy Variant! Super7 did an incredible job with this version of Lion-O. This is the version of Lion-O that all of us vintage colors have been clamoring for! Let’s dive into this Super7 ThunderCats Ultimates Lion-O Toy Variant In Hand Review!
What can I say, Lion-O looks freaking spectacular, I am blown away and speechless!! It a beautiful homage to the vintage LJN figure, Super7 has hit it out of the park on this one!! It looks like Super7 took my vintage LJN figure and super articulated him! The new Wave 6 Lion-O features pin-less joints and a whole new sculpt! He comes in the vintage inspired orange skin tone, red hair, with light blue outfit and bright blue boots! He even has the reddish orange ThunderCats logo on his blue belt, just like the vintage figure. Lion-O’s stance also resembles that of the vintage figure. The new Lion-O totally resembles the stance and build of the vintage figure. He has the same light orange outlines around his eyes and mouth, just the like vintage figure. Lion-O comes with an alternate head, 2 sets of alternate hands and his vintage-colored orange claw and sword of Omens. I have got to say I am head over heels in love with this new figure!!!
The articulation and construction of this new Lion-O figure ( previously used on Mirror Lion-O and Hook Mountain Lion-O) is a vast improvement than the Wave 1 version. Again not only do you get pinless joints, they now improved the articulation with ratcheted joints! They are nice and tight and sturdy! And you can finally pose Lion-O in his signature sight beyond sight pose!
If you don’t have the space or the money for a new Super7 ThunderTank, the great thing about these LJN vintage Inspired ThunderCats is that they look great inside your vintage ThunderTank!
Panthro sits comfortably in the back. While Lion-O fits in the front seat, his legs don’t lay too flat, so his little tush doesn’t sit all the way down in the seat. But he still looks amazing sitting inside the vintage ThunderTank! And you still have room in the back for a kitty or two!
Box and Pack Out
Super7 Ultimates truly have the “Ultimate” packaging! They of course come in a brown shipper box with a ThunderCats logo, but let’s look within. These ThunderCats Ultimates figures come in amazing packaging which includes a beautiful slipcover that hides a stunning figure within! Let’s take a look at each of the different parts of the packaging, shall we?
Just like the other Super7 Ultimates figures, Toy Variant Lion-O’s package design includes a slipcover that is beautifully done. The slipcover is jet black with a very reflective red large ThunderCats logo on it! There is a small cut out on the front near the name of the figure that sets the title off. On the back of the slipcover, there is a large beautiful Thundercats lettered logo.
The most exciting part of opening a Super7 Ultimates figures is that moment when you slide the slip cover off to reveal the window display revealing Toy Variant Lion-O and his pack out of weapons and accessories inside! The slipcover hides another ThunderCats logo above the name of the figure and then you can clearly see everything that Lion-O comes with! Also behind Lion-O is that classic white burst that was used on vintage LJN ThunderCats cardbacks back in the 80’s. The back of the box features an amazing ThunderCats illustration of Toy Variant colored Lion-O and a bio that reads:
Lord of the THUNDERCATS, LION-O is a cunning leader known for his great strength and agility. He wields with the magical heirship forefather, the Sword of Omens, which allows him to see far away lands and to contact the THUNDERCATS when there is impending danger. Although LION-O is ruler, he is a child in a man’s body, constantly challenged to grow in moral strength through the code of Thundera – Justice, Truth, Honor, and Loyalty and LION-O always succeeds.
Toy Variant Lion-O doesn’t come packed with as many weapons and accessories as his previous figure because this is a true homage to the vintage figure. So Super7 kept it simple with these new LJN inspired figures. The accessories are neatly organized in a plastic clamshell that keep them free from movement.
- Lion-O figure
- Alternate head
- 2 sets of extra hands
- Claw Shield
- Sword of Omens
Lion-O’s head sculpt is a wonderful homage to the 1985’s LJN vintage Lion-O action figure! His head sculpt is absolutely stunning and Super7 nailed it when it comes to the paint applications of his solemn looking face. His face is orange in color with lighter yellow accents around his eyes and mouth. He has red wavy hair, just like his vintage counterpart. Lion-O also came packed with an alternate head sculpt with an angrier grimacing look on his face.
Chest & Back
The chest is the same chest that as used on the Wave 5 Mirror Lion-O Ultimates figure and the Hook-Mountain Lion-O. This new body sculpt is a vast improvement from the Wave 1 Lion-O. Except this version has the orange skin and light blue oufit in the LJN inspired colors. He has the same ab crunch, which is nicely hidden by his shirt design. It is more obvious when seen from the back.
Arms, Waist & Legs
Arms: Both arms are the same sculpt as the the Wave 5 Lion-O Ultimates figure. This is the same sculpt as Mirror Lion-O, but this version has the orange skin tone. His forearms are of a lighter yellow orangey color. As you can see compared to the original version of Lion-O, his elbow joints are pin-less, therefore making for a much more elegant looking design.
Waist: Lion-O’s waist again shares the same design as the latest Wave 5 Mirror Lion-O, but obviously with the LJN colorway. His belt is a bright blue color with white trim and he of course has a beautiful looking red and black ThunderCats symbol on his belt buckle. He is wearing light blue shorts that match his shirt color.
Legs: Lion-O’s legs again share the same buck as Mirror Lion-O, and the nice thing about them is that they have an additional articulation point. He now includes thigh cuts, which the original version of original version of Lion-O did not have. Also you can see that you can notice this thigh cut as it seems they should have adjusted the length of his shorts to help hide that joint a little better. Just like the elbow joint, this new buck of Lion-O includes pin-less knee joints as well which look great and also move very smoothly. He also has ratcheted ankle joints to make for a much more stable stance.
Weapons & Accessories
Lion-O comes packed with the following vintage inspired accessories:
- Alternate head
- 2 sets of extra hands
- Claw Shield
- Sword of Omens
This Toy Variant version of Lion-O includes 1 Sword of Omens with a red hilt in the same sculpt as the original version of Lion-O. Also, as you can see, the ThunderCats symbol is done in an all silver just like the vintage toy!
You get one classic looking claw shield in a red color, just like the 1985 vintage LJN toy. The claw shield attaches by the same type of peg as the interchangable hands. By removing Lion-O’s left hand, you then insert his wrist into the claw shield and bam there you go!
This version of Lion-O comes with 6 sets of Interchangeable Hands. Lion-O comes packed with vertical hinged gripping hands so he can hold his Sword of Omens aloft! Then you get another set of 2 gripping hands with a horizontal hinge. Finally you get a third set of expressive open claw hands.
Lion-O throughout the years
The ThunderCats Rankin & Bass Cartoon series debuted in 1985. It was based on the characters created by Ted “Tobin” Wolf. The series followed the adventures of a group of catlike humanoids and consisted of 65 episodes. The first Season aired in 1985, and also includes a TV movie entitled ThunderCats – Ho! in 1986. The following 3 seasons consisted of twenty episodes, starting with a five-part story.
According to ThunderCats (1985 TV series) – Wikipedia:
ThunderCats follows the adventures of the eponymous team of heroes, cat-like humanoid aliens on a planet called Third Earth. The series plot begins with the dying planet Thundera meeting its end, forcing the ThunderCats (a sort of Thunderean nobility) to flee their homeworld. The fleet is attacked by the Thundereans’ enemies, the Mutants of Plun-Darr, who destroy most of the starships in the “ThunderFleet”, but spare the flagship hoping to capture the legendary mystic Sword of Omens they believe is on board. The sword holds the Eye of Thundera, the source of the ThunderCats’ power, which is embedded in the hilt.
Though the Mutants damage the flagship, the power of the Eye drives them back. The damage to the ship means the journey to their original destination is not possible, instead having to journey to “Third Earth”, which will take much longer than they had anticipated. The eldest of the ThunderCats, Jaga, volunteers to pilot the ship while the others sleep in capsules; however, he dies of old age in the process, but not before ensuring they will reach their destination safely.
The flagship contains the young Lord of the ThunderCats, Lion-O, as well as the ThunderCats Cheetara, Panthro, Tygra, WilyKit and WilyKat, and Snarf. When the ThunderCats awaken from their suspended animation on Third Earth after ten “galacto-years”, Lion-O discovers that his suspension capsule has slowed, rather than stopped, his aging. He has now become essentially a child in the body of an adult. Together, the ThunderCats and the friendly natives of Third Earth construct the “Cat’s Lair”, their new home and headquarters, but before long, the Mutants have tracked them down to Third Earth. The intrusion of these two alien races upon the world does not go unnoticed, however, as a demonic, mummified sorcerer calling himself Mumm-Ra recruits the Mutants to aid him in his campaign to acquire the Eye of Thundera and destroy the ThunderCats so that his evil may continue to hold sway over Third Earth.ThunderCats (1985 TV series) – Wikipedia
The Vintage Lion-O figure came out as part of LJN’s Series one ThunderCats figures in 1985. It was the height of popularity for the Rankin and Bass Cartoon Series!
Lion-O came both single carded and packed with his furry companion Snarf. He came with his Claw Shield, Sword of Omens, and a “secret power ring”. The Power Ring was battery powered and when placed in his back, Lion-O’s eyes would light up! He also included Battle-Matic Action! As the package says, a secret lever on his back would make his arm move up and down.
According to LJN Lion-O | Thundercats Wiki | Fandom
1. Battle-Matic Action: Like many of the LJN ThunderCats toys, the Lion-O figure featured a lever on its back and pushing down this lever with the forefinger would make the figure’s Sword bearing right arm move up and down.
2. Light-Up Eyes: Only two figures had this special feature with the other figure being the LJN Mumm-Ra figure. Both these figures came with a Power Ring which required one “AAA” Battery to operate. The Power Ring was to be worn on the finger and inserting its contact point into the opening in Lion-O’s back would cause the figure’s eyes to light up.
3. Poseable limbs and head: The Lion-O figure had 5 points of articulation, 2 at the shoulders, 2 at the hips and 1 at the neck. These points allowed the figure to be posed in a variety of action poses.
1. Sword of Omens: Made of red plastic with the blade and hilt painted silver, the sword was designed to fit into the figure’s Battle-Matic right hand.
2. Claw Shield: Made of red plastic, the claw shield was designed to snap onto Lion-O’s left arm.
3. Power Ring: Made of red plastic, the Power Ring’s top opened to reveal a battery chamber which could house one “AAA” battery. The bottom part of the accessory consisted of a ring like aperture which allowed the Power Ring to be worn on the finger. The contact point of the Power Ring was located at the front and would cause the Lion-O figure’s eyes to light up when inserted into the opening in its back.
4. One Energizer Battery: Only some Series 1 releases of the Lion-O figure came together with a free “AAA” Energizer Battery for the Power Ring.
5. PVC Snarf Figure: Only some Series 2 releases of the Lion-O figure came packaged together with a PVC Snarf Figure. This figure was essentially a mini-statue and had no features or points of articulation. This Snarf figure should not be confused with the fully poseable LJN Snarf figure which was release later as a separate figure as part of the “Companions” sub-line.LJN Lion-O | Thundercats Wiki | Fandom
Lion-O was released in 2 variant color schemes. He came out with an Orange Hair Variant and a Red-Hair Variant. And yes, those are both my vintage Lion-Os from my personal collection!
According to LJN Lion-O | Thundercats Wiki | Fandom:
Lion-O was one of the first ThunderCats action figures produced by LJN Toys. The figure was based on the original 1980s cartoon version of Lion-O. Standing a solid 7 inches tall, the Lion-O figure had action features as well as poseable arms, legs and head, thanks to 5 points of articulation. The figure also came equipped with weapons and extra accessories.LJN Lion-O | Thundercats Wiki | Fandom
Since the LJN Version of the 1980’s, several versions of Lion-O were released. A lanky 6″ version from Bandai was released in 2011. And when Mattel took over the license, they released their ThunderCats Classics version of Lion-O in 2018. But in 2020, Super7 took over the ThunderCats License and released their version of Wave 1 Lion-O, which used the same sculpt as the 2018 Mattel Classics version. Thanks to the Fwoosh for posting this photo of the variations of Lion-O
In 2022, Super7 released two more variants of Lion-O, the first being Mirron Lion-o, the evil version of him in a red color scheme. This version uses the same body sculpt as the new Toy Variant version, with the pinless joints.
This version of Lion-O came packed with an alternate head, 4 claw shields, an extended sword of Omens, a closed sword of Omens and 2 sets of alternate hands.
The last version of Lion-O to be released was the 2022 San Diego Comic Con Hook Mountain Color Changing Lion-O. This was an amazing version that changed colors in the sun! We did an amazing review on him, which you can read here: Lion-O Hook Mountain Thundercats Ultimates SDCC 2022 Review (toyhabits.com)
“ThunderCats, HO!” Lion-O, Lord of the ThunderCats, is here to roar once more to summon his fellow heroes and put fear in the hearts of his foes! This 7” scale highly articulated ThunderCats ULTIMATES! figure of Lion-O is inspired by the vintage toy line and includes multiple interchangeable heads & hands, a red claw shield, and the red Sword of Omens. Upgrade your childhood collection with the made-to-order Lion-O and the rest of the vintage toy inspired wave of ThunderCats ULTIMATES!
This new Toy Variant Lion-o is inspired by the 1985 LJN vintage figure. As you can see, Super7 did an amazing job capturing the look and feel of the vintage figure! The colors are spectacular and pay a beautiful homage to the vintage version. You can see on more simplified articulation on the vintage figure, and battle action lever and light up eyes ports on his back. Of course, you don’t get the action features with the Super7 version, but you are basically getting the best of both worlds, a modern figure with modern articulation and construction, with the charm of the vintage 1980’s toy! It’s incredible when you look at the two figures side by side how close they are, yet you know you are holding an Ultimates ThunderCat in your hand!
Here we have both Red and Orange haired vintage Lion-o’s aside with our new Super7 Ultimates. He fits right in with both your modern collection and vintage one!
Toy Photography fun
If any of you follow our Toy Habits Instagram page and The Toy Sorceress Instagram page, you will see the Toy Sorceress loves Toy Photography, so here are some Wave 6 LJN inspired 80’s goodness photographs for your enjoyment and inspiration!
This wave of Toy Variant figures look incredible together, let’s hope that Super7 keeps it coming!
Vintage Inspired Fun
This is after all a review on a vintage inspired Lion-o, so it would not be complete with a little photographic homage to the LJN figures that started it all! I just had to have a little bit of fun with my vintage LJN figures, so enjoy these photos as well!
Wave 6 is an incredibly nostalgic wave!
- Lion-O – LJN Vintage Toy Variant Design
- Cheetara – LJN Vintage Toy Variant DesignMumm-Ra The Ever Living – LJN Vintage Toy Variant Design
- Monkian – LJN Vintage Toy Variant Design
Where to Buy:
Entertainment Earth is currently shipping out most of this wave to customers now! Be sure to use code ” TOYHABITS” at checkout for 10% off and free shipping off $39+ orders!
This new wave of Super7 Ultimates; inspired by the timeless toys we grew up with; with amazing accessories and all new articulation, are exactly what I have been waiting for from this line! These figures have all new sculpts, while still maintaining that classic charm of the vintage LJN toy line we all know and love! I absolutely love this new version of Lion-O, from his orange vintage color way; to his new pinless articulation, he is everything I could have asked for in a modern take on the vintage LJN classic! Be sure to keep an eye out for more ThunderCats News, Reviews and an all new ThunderCats Shopping experience!
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