Lion-O or Optimus Prime: Who is the better leader?

Discussion in 'ThunderCats (1985)' started by Mark M, Oct 21, 2018.

  1. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    Just out of curiosity I thought it would be fun to discuss who is the better leader.
    Lion-O or Optimus Prime
    For the majority of the discussion let's try and focus on what they did in the 80's cartoon series.

    I personally think Optimus Prime was a far better leader.
    Wilycub likes this.
  2. Tygra_Rules

    Tygra_Rules Thunderian Legend

    I think Optimus Prime.

    He had a bigger team to lead, he never let his ego get on his way, he never whined, he got the idea of teamwork and he didn't have an deux-ex-machina to rely on.
    Mark M likes this.
  3. Booshman

    Booshman Thunderian Legend

    I'd say Lion-O, he grew into a role where he was really thrown in at the deep end, and became what he needed to be. Optimus Prime was supposed to be a great leader from the outset and managed to lose Cybertron and Autobot City on Earth to the Decepticons. Also, how many Transformers died under his command again? And he was killed!
  4. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    I do agree Lion-O did have to grow into the role and learn a lot.
    Although I must disagree and say:
    Optimus never lost Cybertron. He never had control of Cybertron to lose it. In the cartoon Optimus was created to fight back against the Decepticons when Megatron started the war. And in the comics he was selected to be the next leader.
    Optimus also never lost Autobot City on Earth. Ultra Magnus was in charge of Autobot City and technically he never lost it, he kept the Decepticons at bay until Optimus arrived with reinforcements and saved Autobot City.
    The Autobots that died under his command died due to Megatron's action not because of Primes actions.
    Also Prime was killed due to Hotrod's interference. He couldn't fire on Megatron in case he hit Hotrod. Even then he wasn't killed out right, he died later from his wounds defeating Megatron and saving Autobot City.
  5. Wilycub

    Wilycub Staff Writer and Artist Staff

    Great idea for a discussion topic, Mark! :thumbsup Here's my two cents on the question:

    First and foremost, I have to admit that I've only seen a handful of the 80s Transformers episodes (and that too thanks to its ROCKS discussion thread!). So I don't know as much about Prime (his successes, his failures) as I do about Lion-O. Having said that, I'd say Prime is the better leader by far. Prime already was a great leader while Lion-O (for most of the series) was still learning the ropes of how to be a leader (and an adult for that mater).

    Lion-O was a child in a man's body and many times his immaturity and impetuousness was quite evident in his decisions. Lion-O was learning his responsibilities on the job. He didn't have the wisdom of Prime (that is why he constantly needed to be advised by Jaga, Snarf and the rest of the gang). Lion-O didn't command the kind of respect that Prime did. Sure the TCats respected their Lord, but not in the same way that the Transformers respected Prime. Like the Kittens can make fun of Lion-O but in the episodes that I saw, the Transformers never joked around with Prime (they did it in his absence). The TCats did respect Lion-O as a leader, but they also had to "take care of him" in different ways at times due to his lack of experience.
    Mark M likes this.
  6. Booshman

    Booshman Thunderian Legend

    I'll defer to your superior knowledge here then. I thought the backstory was that Prime had been in command for a while. I guess they didn't lose Autobot City too, since Prime "Turned the tide", but it got pretty messed up. I will say though that prime should have just shot. Had he had to go through Hotrod to do it, so be it.
    Mark M likes this.
  7. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    He should have shot before Megatron started begging for mercy. ;)
    Even Megatron (and as Galvatron) showed Optimus respect.
  8. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    I prefer Optimus as a leader compared to Lion-O for several reasons.
    First and foremost Optimus never had to rely on magical device like the Sword of Omens to get out trouble and solve any problem.
    Prime's actions and plans were always heavily thought out rather than rash actions.
    Optimus did not just go ahead with his own plans, he would listen to the advice of his fellow Autobots to come up with the best plan of action.
    Prime never put himself before protecting his fellow Autobots and Humans.
    Just because Optimus was the leader he wasn't the biggest, the strongest or the fastest or portrayed as being better than others in their field of expertise.
    Even though Prime had the Matrix, it was never over used like the Sword of Omens. In the series Optimus only ever had to use it once.
    Wilycub likes this.
  9. Wilycub

    Wilycub Staff Writer and Artist Staff

    Whereas many of the villains in TCats often referred to Lion-O as a cub! ;)

    Also Prime never engaged in the kind of childish shenanigans that Lion-O is guilty of partaking in a couple of times. I'd say Tygra would have made a more Prime-like leader than Lion-O. Maybe if he had gotten a few more seasons of TCats, Lion-O might have matured a bit more. Also the number of failures and successes don't necessarily determine if a leader is good or bad, but rather how the leader leads his time to successes and out of failures is what it more important. :)
    Mark M likes this.
  10. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    That's why it's a pity the 2011 version didn't get to complete its story arc. That version of Lion-O understood the weight that had been placed on his shoulders. He knew he didn't have all the necessary means to deal with it yet, but he understood he was learning on the job. The original Lion-O was a bit cocky and relied on the sword too much. The 2011 version of Lion-O could have become as good a leader as Optimus Prime in a way that the 1985 Lion-O never looked like doing.
  11. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    It would have been nice if it had finished it's arc and seen how Lion-O turned out. Although I think the 2011 version had even less respect from his fellow Thundercats compared to the 80's version. The 2011 version of Lion-O reminds me of the 2008 Transformers Animated take on Optimus Prime when he is young and inexperienced and not the Autobot leader. It's definitely worth watching.

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