The Young Tygra figure was released by LJN Toys in series 1 of their Thundercats line of action figures in 1985.
Tygra was voiced by Peter Newman in the animated TV series, and he was the Thundercats architect, scientist, and best friend of Lion-O but in the second series he became the adoptive brother of Lion-O.
The LJN figure was released in 1985 based on the original TV series. This figure is commonly referred to as Young Tygra as it was based on the earlier, younger version of Tygra who only appeared in a few episodes of the first series but the head sculpt was a lot more detailed and cartoon accurate than the “old” Tygra, that was released a year later in 1986.
This figure came on the same generic backing card as the other figures, in a sealed blister pack on an 8-back card that featured all the figures available on the back of the card.
The centre of the card advertised the four Heroes on the left and the four villains on the right. The top of the card had two panels featuring the “Battle-Matic” action feature and the Thundercats’ logo. Below the panels showing the heroes and villains the vehicles and the Astral Moat Monster were featured with the LJN logo and the proof of purchase. In France the line was known as “Cosmocats” and this reflected on the boxes and packaging for the LJN toys.
There was also a double pack of the young Tygra available, that came with a miniature Wilycat figurine with no articulation, however a full-sized Wilycat figure was released in the second series of figures. Sealed young Tygra’s with the Wilycat figurine are extremely hard to find MOC.
Thundercats Lion-O was released in 1985 with the first wave of figures and featured the “Battle-Matic Action” which was activated by pushing down on a lever on his back that made his sword arm move up and down in a slashing motion.
The Thundercats Lion-O was also one of only two figures in this line that had a “Light-up Eyes” feature, the other being the Mumma-Ra figure. This feature was activated by the Power Ring, which took an AAA battery, and when inserted into a hole in Lion-O’s back his eyes lit up. When not in use this could be worn on your hand (not the figure’s) as a ring, as it had a Thundercats insignia on the top of it.
As with all the series one figures Tygra came with the Battle-Matic Action, this was a “secret” lever (hardly a secret as it wasn’t easy to miss) which when pushed caused Tygra’s right arm to swing up and down, which was perfect for his Bola Whip accessory.
The Bola Whip was his only accessory, and this was made from two lengths of blue nylon thread, that were attached to a small orange plastic handle and at the end of each nylon thread there was a small plastic orange ball, similar to a “cat of nine tails”, which I guess would make sense and be appropriate.
The head sculpt was very detailed with clean, clear and crisp paintwork with an orange and black mane and “tanned” sideburns.
His right-hand was molded to hold his Bola whip whereas his left-hand was sculpted open. His torso and legs had some nicely sculpted muscle effects and abs . Tygra was also the only Thundercat that was sculpted with toeless boots. His torso and legs were painted a dark blue on a sky blue, except for his arms and chest, which were painted the same color as his head sculpt.
Tygra had the typical 5 points of articulation, that was so common in the 70’s and 80’s, with joints on his shoulders, thighs, and neck. His legs could be moved almost to 90 degrees forward but there was no backward movement. His left arm had a swivel joint and could be rotated a full 360 degrees but his right arm, due to the Battle-Matic feature, was extremely loose and therefore not really very posable. His head had a very simple left and right movement. To check the authenticity of this figure you can check the TM info on the soles of his feet.
As with the Lion-O figure this figure was also licensed by other toy companies to be released in other countries, therefore resulting in some interesting variations.
In Brazil Tygra was released by Glasslite Toys, who also released Star Wars toys. The Glasslite figure was identical to the LJN sculpt except for a few minor variations. The most stark of these are that the front and back halves of the figure’s mold were screwed together with 3 screws rather than glued, as were the LJN figures. The Bola whip was also different in design and colour, although it was still blue. The Glasslite was also sold in an open ended pack rather than on a blister card.
Values as of Feb 2022