It doesn't display properly, I believe because the beginning whitespace is being ignored. I could force the newline into the template, except that would mess things up for any cell content that doesn't start with a list.
Since it forces the newline to be kept but doesn't actually have anything in the first line to display, it doesn't add any extra size to the cell. But still, anything that must be done on many actual uses of the template is pretty suboptimal.
I just tried a different solution where the template would check to see if the first character of cellcontent was a *, in which case it would add a newline on the template side. However, this didn't work--anything successfully added by the check was still followed by the first list item not displaying as a list item.
Fngplg, what you suggest I didn't notice a change with. TableWiz, what you suggested is something I tried before but didn't like as a solution because it adds extra empty vertical space to things that don't start as a list.
Well, I got it working. It seemed crazy that trying to get a simple newline to show up on command would be a problem--if I can make a table without and one with, then at the extreme how about a check that creates totally different tables, one with and one without? I didn't go that far, but I guess broadening it just a little bit made it work as intended.