Warrior bears and the Mists of Pandaria

A tad on the "old news" side by now, but a fortnight ago the cinematic trailer for World of WarCraft: Mists of Pandaria - the fourth expansion for the world's most successful (if rapidly declining) MMORPG - was released.

Whether you play WOW or not; enjoy video games or not, the below clip is worth watching. Not only does it stay true to the top-notch technical standard Blizzard sets for its opening clips/cinematics (check out a bunch of others here!) but it also demonstrates a perfect balance of action and light-heartedness - while still doing enough to distinguish itself from Kung Fu Panda.

And in case you need a little context before watching, Mists of Pandaria sees the warring Alliance (Humans, Night Elves, Dwarves, Gnomes, Draenei, Worgen) and Horde (Orcs, Undead, Tauren, Trolls, Blood Elves Goblins) stumble onto the lost continent of Pandaria, an Eastern-style world populated by neutrally aligned, humanoid panda people, who are highly skilled in martial arts... and beer making.

Now when Mists of Pandaria was announced, I went on the offensive, trying to preemptively counter the disgust of "hardcore" gamers towards the inclusion of something so apparently cutesy, goofy and childish as martial arts pandas in WOW. You can read that opinion piece here:
The Bane of Badassery for Lazygamer.
The thing is, I have a soft spot for "Battle Bears." My passion for pretty much anything Star Wars has cooled, but I will forever owe George Lucas for instilling in me a love of warrior bears... starting of course with the Ewoks. Again, some sci-fi fans have sneered at the inclusion of these Endor inhabitants in the Star Wars Universe, but I think the description - "They look like teddy bears and fight like the Viet Cong" - sums up how deceptively badass they are.

On that note, here are some of my favourite combat-proficient bears from Popular Culture, past and present.

Hell, in saving the world from Hate, even these guys demonstrate some real hero bear spirit.


MJenks said…
The Bear Cavalry has always amused me.

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