|Original Airdate||September 13, 1985|
|Writer(s)||Julian P. Gardner|
|Previous Episode||The Slaves of Castle Plun-Darr|
|Next Episode||The Terror of Hammerhand|
|All Episodes||Episode Guide|
Mumm-Ra transforms himself into a Puma (Pumm-Ra) and stages a fake heroic deed (saving Cheetara from the Mutants) in order to convince the ThunderCats that he is one of them, from their home planet of Thundera. He is accepted and almost succeeds in his evil plan to capture the Cats' Lair, but his energy force deserts him and he turns back to Mumm-Ra before the eyes of the ThunderCats.
In this episode the ThunderCats realize that trust must be earned, since first appearances may be deceiving. Learn to judge people by central characteristics and not superficially.
Another lesson involves responses to problems. When faced with a problem with an uncertain resolution, it is best not to act impulsively on instincts or to use physical strength alone. Reason and ingenuity are often called for, and they can generate the best means of reaching a goal.
When faced with interpersonal problems, the ability to defer acting and to engage in the processes of thinking about the situation is important in children. Some significant thinking skills are the capacity to generate alternative solutions to the problem, the capacity to consider the consequences of social acts, and the ability to articulate step-by-step means to reach a particular solution. These skills have been shown to be mediators of social adjustment in children. Training in exercising these cognitive skills will enhance children's social adjustment (Spivack, Platt, & Shure, 1976).
Panthro and Tygra are inside Cats Lair, using the fortress' powerful telescopes to scan the surrounding area. All appears quiet until they notice something moving very fast near a volcano. It turns out to be Cheetara, out for her normal morning run. As everything appears normal, Panthro and Tygra decide to head out in the ThunderTank to check out the volcano.
In the midst of her lap, Cheetara suddenly collapses. Jackalman and Monkian quickly put the unconscious ThunderCat on a crude stretcher and carry her away. It is soon revealed that the Mutants capturing Cheetara was all a part of Mumm-Ra's scheme. The mummy assumes the form of Pumm-Ra, a cat-like Thunderian. When Cheetara comes to her senses, Pumm-Ra is sitting beside her and claims that it was he who rescued her from the Mutants. He also concocts a story about his origin, claiming to hail from Thundera, just like Cheetara.
Back at Cats Lair, Cheetara introduces Pumm-Ra to the other ThunderCats. After hearing his story, Lion-O is overly eager to make Pumm-Ra into a ThunderCat but Panthro and Tygra decide to take a more cautious approach and give Pumm-Ra a week's time before taking any decisions. Pumm-Ra is taken to the lair's Guest Room while the other ThunderCats turn in for the night.
As the veil of darkness falls, Pumm-Ra gets busy. He first sabotages the lair and then the ThunderTank, ripping out most of the controls. He then starts searching for the Sword of Omens and with his knowledge of ancient locking techniques, he is able to unlock the Sword Chamber by turning a hidden stone and grabbing both the Sword and the Claw Shield.
As morning breaks, the ThunderCats head off to the Thundrillium fields to restock their fuel supplies, leaving Lion-O and Snarf to safeguard their fortress. Seizing the chance, Pumm-Ra uses the Cats Lair's electronic eyes to signal the Mutants who are hiding nearby to start their assault on the lair. He then tries to attack Lion-O using the Sword of Omens but as it can never be used for any evil purpose, lightning falls from the heavens and knocks the Sword and the Claw Shield out of Pumm-Ra's hands, and Lion-O quickly grabs the two items.
The Mutants use the ThunderTank to continue their onslaught but their assault is cut short by the arrival of the ThunderCats. The Cats make quick work of the Mutants who flee for their lives. Now left alone, Pumm-Ra runs inside the lair and locks the doors. Tygra infiltrates the lair using the Power Exhaust pipes despite the dangers involved. He clears the pipes just as Pumm-Ra turns on the lair's laser beams which would have incinerated Tygra had he still been inside the Exhaust pipe. Using his invisibility, Tygra quickly overpowers Pumm-Ra in the Main Control Room just as the remaining ThunderCats arrive. Outnumbered and defeated, Mumm-Ra assumes his true ever-living form and retreats back to the Black Pyramid.
- It is revealed in this episode that Jaga chose Tygra to be the head of the ThunderCats Council and not Lion-O.
- The episode also reveals that the Sword Chamber is locked using an ancient Egyptian Tomb Device in which the key to unlocking the door is turning a specific stone in the wall.
- This is one of the four episodes written by series' executive producer Jules Bass, under the pseudonym Julian P. Gardner.
- This episode marks the first time Tygra, Panthro, Cheetara, and Snarf see Mumm-Ra. Before this, Lion-O was the only member of the ThunderCats to encounter him when the two fought in "The Unholy Alliance".
- Mumm-Ra's transformation incantation is slightly different in this episode. He says "Spirits of Evil" instead of the usual "Ancient Spirits of Evil". Also he refers to himself as "this ancient body" as opposed to the usual "this decayed form".
- Tygra states that Cheetara clocked in at 30 seconds to the mile on her morning run. This would mean her average speed would be an astonishing 120 miles per hour.
- While Tygra is talking to Pumm-Ra inside the Cats Lair, the color of his right shoulder changes briefly from the normal light grey to a darker shade of grey.
- After Pumm-Ra takes the Sword of Omens and the Claw Shield, when Lion-O tries to get in touch with Panthro via the ThunderTank's radio, the Sword of Omens and Claw Shield are shown to be on his waist even though Pumm-Ra had them at that time.
- Even though Mumm-Ra had come across the Sword of Omens in its short form when battling Lion-O in the episode The Unholy Alliance, he appears quite surprised to see it in its short form in this episode.
- As he is looking for the Sword of Omens, Pumm-Ra throws down a number of guns and other weapons lying on a table. The ThunderCats have never been shown to wield any of these weapons.
- Even though Pumm-Ra damages the controls of both the Cats Lair and the ThunderTank, he is later shown to be able to operate the lair's Eyes to signal Slithe and the other Mutants. Later on, he is shown firing the lair's laser beams at the ThunderCats. Also the Mutants are able to drive the ThunderTank when attacking.
- When Lion-O calls the ThunderCats, they all arrive swiftly except for WilyKit and WilyKat who are nowhere to be seen. They suddenly appear later on near the ending.
Slithe: I hope this works. Those cats are very clever, and I don't trust Mumm-Ra... but it is a good plan, so we wait and see, yes?
Pumm-Ra: They must all be asleep by now. So, while the Thundercats purr, Pumm-Ra pursues.
Lion-O: The Sword will not obey you, and without it, you are no match for me!
Pumm-Ra: Hold! Your tongue speaks faster than your brain can think! Hold and behold! We have met before, boy! And I remember! Thunder! Thunder! Thunder! ThunderCats HO!
Jaga: Be not hasty in your decisions, Lion-O. Your instincts may be correct, but one does not make decisions by instinct alone. Let the facts weigh heavily on your mind and listen to your peers with caution.
Pumm-Ra: Who am I? Wouldn't you like to know? Suffice to say, that I have lived here for a thousand years. I am not the intruder; it is you who have disturbed my rest. But I have time... [transforms into Mumm-Ra] A thousand years more! FIVE THOUSAND! You cannot defeat me, for I am Mumm-Ra! And wherever evil exists, Mumm-Ra lives! Mumm-Ra lives! Mumm-Ra lives!
This episode was released on the following media:
- ThunderCats Vol.2: Pumm-Ra (Big Box) - f.h.e. release
- ThunderCats Vol.2: Pumm-Ra - f.h.e. release
- ThunderCats Vol. 1: Pumm-Ra and Spitting Image - The Video Collection release
- Pumm-Ra (US Comic)
SPIVACK, G., Platt, J. J., & Shure, M. B. (1976). The Problem-Solving Approach to Adjustment. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass
- "Pumm-Ra" on IMDb
- ThunderCats 1985 cartoon series on Wikipedia
- Dan Maruschak's Review of "Pumm-Ra"
- ThunderCats on ThunderCats.org