Dungeons and Dragons poster from Renault car commercial
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Credit: Renault

1980s Dungeons & Dragons cartoon gets new life in car commercial

Contributed by
May 25, 2019

Live-action remake fever has truly reached an all-time high. Everyone seems to be getting in on it, even car manufacturers. The 1980s cartoon Dungeons & Dragons may be gone, but it is a pop-culture icon in Brazil, where the series remains incredibly popular. So much so that the French car manufacturer Renault made a Hollywood-production-level live-action commercial that brought the cartoon characters to life.

The nearly two-minute-long commercial is complete with explosions, a magical bow shooting glowing arrows of energy, and, of course, dragons. It's a seriously faithful adaptation of the CBS TV series that ran for 27 episodes from 1983 to 1985.  The animated series revolves around a group of friends who find themselves transported to the land of dungeons and dragons after an amusement park ride whisks them to another dimension.

It wouldn't be Dungeons & Dragons without, you know, dragons, and the commercial does not disappoint. The children's archnemesis and evil wizard Venger, along with his five-headed dragon Tiamat, chase the children all over the realm. Thankfully, the Dungeon Master shows up in the nick of time, in a Kwid Outsider no less. The children use the car to return themselves to the real world, though something else may have unknowingly hitched along for the ride.

Take a look:

So, did you spot Uni, the baby unicorn who decided to come back to the real world with the kids?

The car manufacturer went all out on the production of this commercial. They even went so far as to make posters for the characters that rival any Hollywood blockbuster. They also released a full trailer for the commercial earlier in May, which can be viewed below.

The cartoon focuses on the friendship between the children and how they work together to find their way back home. Of course, they couldn't do it without their friend and mentor the Dungeon Master. The DM helps the children learn their new classes and weapons as they battle the forces of evil who wish to use their weapons to gain more power in the realm. The children frequently come to the aid of others on their quest to find a way home.

Dungeons & Dragons was a joint venture between the game's manufacturers, TSR, and Marvel Productions. The animated series was wildly popular and led its timeslot for two years. The series sadly met its demise before a final episode could be produced. The Emmy award-winning writer Michael Reaves, who wrote for the series, blogged about the final episode, entitled "Requiem." The episode would have tied up some loose narrative threads, like revealing the evil wizard Venger was actually the Dungeon Master's son. Yikes, talk about a complicated family relationship!

We're happy to see this classic get some new life breathed into it. Who knows, maybe this will spawn a brand-new Dungeons & Dragons cartoon. Hey, we can dream, can't we?


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