Return of the Driller
Return of the Driller Title Card.jpg
Episode 1.32
Original Airdate November 5, 1985
Writer(s) Howard Post
Previous Episode Mandora and the Pirates
Next Episode Dimension Doom
All Episodes Episode Guide

Return of the Driller is an episode from the original series of ThunderCats. Written by Howard Post, it originally aired on November 5, 1985.

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Official Summary[edit | edit source]

Mumm-Ra summons the Driller to destroy the Cats' Lair by drilling a tunnel from the Acid Lake to the Lair's foundations. The Sword of Omens shows Lion-O the source of the danger and Tygra, having analyzed the acid, concludes that the alkaline Sponge Fog can only neutralize it. Using the ThunderTank, the ThunderCats cut out a section of the Sponge Fog and take it back to the Lair to wedge it beneath the foundations, in the path of the acid. The journey is dangerous and the ThunderCats are forced to fight off Rockmen, a Mechanosect, and a Giant Beetle. When the ThunderTank's transmission fails and Lion-O investigates, he is almost crushed by a Giant Worm. Summoned by the Sword, the ThunderCats save him. Mumm-Ra, who has witnessed their entire journey, severs the Bridge of Light and causes the ThunderTank to plunge into the River of Despair, where it turns upside down and loses the precious section of the Sponge Fog. Lion-O retrieves the Tank and the Sponge and the ThunderCats pack the Sponge into the Lair's foundations, saving their home and defeating Mumm-Ra.

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Official Moral[edit | edit source]

Sometimes our daily lives are disrupted by something happening to us out of the ordinary or by a crisis. In this episode, the ThunderCats had to respond to a crisis caused by an outside force of the seeping Acid, which threatened their home. Their reaction was a quick acknowledgment that action was needed and the development of a resourceful response. As a result, they succeeded in coping with the problem. Had they waited or reacted slowly or even ignored the signals of the crisis, it would have only worsened and caused a catastrophic loss for them. When we are faced with a problem and react slowly or passively by withdrawing or wishing it would go away, we risk making it worse. Problems demand action and an active responsibility on our part to put forth effort to solve them.

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Story[edit | edit source]

Everything appears to be calm and serene in the Unicorn Forest where the ThunderKittens are happily picking apples. What they are unaware of is that watching them from the cauldron inside is pyramid, Mumm-Ra is vexed at the sight of the ThunderCats prospering on Third Earth.

With a new scheme in mind, Mumm-Ra summons the Driller to his dark abode. Paying him a handful of diamonds, Mumm-Ra instructs the denizen of the deep to burrow a hole from Acid Lake all the way to Cats Lair. The Driller quickly completes his assignment and immediately the highly corrosive Ultrasolvic Acid begins to eat away at the foundation of Cats Lair.

While going about their usual activities inside the lair, the ThunderCats notice a foul stench in the air, which Tygra correctly identifies as Ultrasolvic Acid. The Sword of Omens' "Sight Beyond Sight" further reveals the presence of a huge amount of the acid beneath Cats Lair. After Tygra points out that Sponge Fog is the sole material with the ability to neutralize Ultrasolvic Aicd, the Cats waste no time in heading out to acquire it.

The ThunderCats arrive in the valley where Sponge Fog grows abundantly. Utilizing the ThunderTank's mechanical cutters, Panthro easily cuts out a large block of the spongy substance. However, as the Cats begin their journey home, they come under attack from the Rockmen who incessantly bombard the ThunderTank with massive boulders. Panthro is thus forced to drive through the Forest of Giant Insects in order to avoid the bombardment.

While making their way through the strange forest, the ThunderCats come face to face with a number of its inhabitants, including a Mechanosect, a Giant Beetle, and a Giant Worm-like creature, which almost devours Lion-O. Fortunately the Cats succeed in dispatching all these huge insects and push forward.

Upon witnessing the ThunderCats continuing their journey home undeterred, Mumm-Ra decides to take matters into his own hands. Changing into this Ever-living form, Mumm-Ra ambushes the ThunderCats while they are in the midst of crossing the Bridge of Light. He destroys the bridge, causing the ThunderTank to plunge into the River of Despair below. After a tough struggle to escape the powerful suction of t he Whirlpool of Infinity, the Cats finally reach their lair plug the Driller's hole with the Sponge Fog before the acid can do any more damage.

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Characters[edit | edit source]

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Vehicles[edit | edit source]

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Locations[edit | edit source]

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • The sequence at the beginning with Mumm-Ra and the Driller is mostly reused animation from the episode "Spitting Image", which was also written by Howard Post.
  • The scene in which Tygra uses his Bolo Whip to free Lion-O form the Giant Worm is also reused animation from the show's opening sequence.
  • In spite of the episode being named after him, the Driller is only on-screen for a brief segment near the beginning

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Goofs[edit | edit source]

  • In two scenes - one when the ThunderCats are testing the new fuel and one when they are retrieving the Sponge Fog in the ThunderTank - the right shoulder of Tygra's outfit is colored in a lighter shade of gray as opposed to its usual darker shade.
Return of the Driller error1.jpg
  • Even after Mumm-Ra turns over the hourglass, majority of the sand in it is still sitting at the bottom.
Return of the Driller error2.jpg
  • While in the grips of the giant worm-like creature, Lion-O is initially only able to pull out the Sword of Omens form the Claw Shield with his left hand. The next scene shows him using both hands to summon his friends. The scene after that depicts the sword in its short form and inside the Claw Shield.
Return of the Driller error3.jpg
  • After the ThunderTank stops in the Forest of Giant Insects, Lion-O jumps out of his seat and heads towards the back of the tank. When he doesn't return, Snarf first tries to search for him, but he only looks in the forward direction. Then when the other THunderCats join in the search, they too all head in the same forward direction, without even glancing in the opposite direction in which they all saw Lion-O going.
  • For some inexplicable reason, WilyKit and WilyKat do not go to help Lion-O after he summons the ThunderCats using the Sword of Omens.

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Notable Quotes[edit | edit source]

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png Episode Screenshots[edit | edit source]

ThunderCats Bullet Point.png External Links[edit | edit source]

ThunderCats 1980s - Episode Guide - Season 1
Exodus | The Unholy Alliance | Berbils | The Slaves of Castle Plun-Darr | Pumm-Ra | The Terror of Hammerhand | Trouble with Time | The Tower of Traps | The Garden of Delights | Mandora - The Evil Chaser | The Ghost Warrior | The Doomgaze | Lord of the Snows | The Spaceship Beneath the Sands | The Time Capsule | The Fireballs of Plun-Darr | All That Glitters | Spitting Image | Mongor | Return to Thundera | Dr. Dometone | The Astral Prison | The Crystal Queen | Safari Joe | Snarf Takes Up The Challenge | Sixth Sense | The Thunder-Cutter | The Wolfrat | Feliner - Part I | Feliner - Part II | Mandora and the Pirates | Return of the Driller | Dimension Doom | Queen of 8 Legs | Sword in a Hole | The Evil Harp of Charr-Nin | Trial of Strength | The Demolisher | Monkian's Bargain | Tight Squeeze | The Micrits | Trial of Speed | The Rock Giant | Jackalman's Rebellion | Turmagar the Tuska | The Trial of Cunning | The Mumm-Ra Berbil | Mechanical Plague | Trapped | Trial of Mind Power | Excalibur | Secret of the Ice King | Good and Ugly | The Transfer | Divide and Conquer | Dream Master | Out of Sight | The Mountain | The Superpower Potion | Eye of the Beholder | Trial of Evil | The Trouble with ThunderKittens | Mumm-Rana | The Shifter | Fond Memories Wilykat Nav2.png
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