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Catch the action, guess the mystery on my show. The best show: Mr. T.
October 12, 2013 1:40 PM   Subscribe

"Listen up. This is Mr. T. I pity the fool who misses my show. I pity him!" These words began about half of the episodes of Mr. T, the animated series. It was part Scooby Doo, part A-Team, and part American Anthem. But whatever it was, it was thoroughly 1980s, and its entire 30 episode run can be found below the fold. Each show featured a live action lead-in to that week's mystery, in which Mr. T. and his globetrotting, crimesolving band of child gymnasts brought down another bad guy. Following each show was another live action segment imparting a moral lesson. So, it looks like you have a few seasons to catch up, doesn't it? posted by MoonOrb (98 comments total) 28 users marked this as a favorite

 
I remember this. Someone please explain to me why Mr. T is traveling with a gymnastics team in this series. I found that puzzling as a kid. He didn't seem like a gymnast.
posted by dortmunder at 1:47 PM on October 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


Mr T! duh nuh luh nuh duh . duh duh duh. be del lee doo doo doo.

that is my impression of the theme song I do whenever anyone mentions Mr. T

Show was nuts.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:49 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


OH HELL YES. MoonOrb delivers.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 1:53 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


My siblings and I always thought that we missed some explanatory pilot that explained why Mr. T was there, but the Internet has taught me this isn't true. But I suppose if you were a gymnastics team that had an almost supernatural tendancy to stumble into mysteries, it would make sense to a Mr. T type as your bodyguard.

What doesn't make sense to me is why Spike, the little red haired brother of one of the gymnasts with a unhealthy Mr. T fixation, travelled with them, as it is established in an episode that their parents are alive.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 1:55 PM on October 12, 2013


Someone please explain to me why Mr. T is traveling with a gymnastics team in this series.

Keep in mind that Mr. T's early work including bouncing and body-guarding. He legitimately charged four figures per day for his personal services in the 1970's.

I think a better question is how the gymnastics team is able to afford him.
posted by parliboy at 2:05 PM on October 12, 2013 [6 favorites]


Someone please explain to me why Mr. T is traveling with a gymnastics team in this series.

The 1984 Olympics were held in Los Angeles and were a big deal-- remember that television choices were much more limited back then, so people would actually watch events that they would never willingly sit through now.

Gymnastics had traditionally been the forte of foreign communists like Nadia Comenec. However, in 1984, the US had a gymnast who was ready to prove that America was the greatest nation in the world by nature of being able to get a fluke gold medal in gymnastics. That gymnast was the bland, wholesome, dim Mary Lou Retton. She wasn't remotely interesting, but the TV rammed her down a bored nation's collective throat, and suddenly gymnastics was hot. Briefly.

Around that time, some shirt at NBC was tasked with creating a new cartoon. "What do the kids like? They like Mr. T! What else who they like? Gymnastics! The pairing's pretty random and indigestible, but I am so coked up that I'm going to pitch it anyway!" And his superiors were also so full of Colombian confidence that they signed off on it. Mr T was incredulous and worried that the show would be undignified, but then he remembered that he regularly appeared on television with tire chains around his neck and mismatched socks and just generally did stuff for paychecks.

So they rushed the show out, but gymnastics had already faded from the public memory. NBC didn't care, because they knew that Mr. T was the selling point and he still had 18 months or so on his sell-by date. Even children were thoroughly sick of Mr. T by the time the third season came out, but it was cheap to produce because they could just cut the old episodes up into new ones because kids are stupid and there wasn't much else to watch.

And now you know... the rest of the story.
posted by Mayor Curley at 2:42 PM on October 12, 2013 [30 favorites]


That show is how I learned breakfast can take many forms, including that of a ham sandwich, so don't preclude non-traditional breakfast options, fool!
posted by ignignokt at 2:47 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Mr T was the height of sanity compared to some of the other fare from around the same time. Kidd Video, I am looking in your direction.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 2:51 PM on October 12, 2013 [5 favorites]


Mr. T also starred in "T & T."
posted by reiichiroh at 3:02 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I remember them eating a snake around a campfire. Is this a false memory?
posted by jwhite1979 at 3:08 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Kidd Video, I am looking in your direction.

I don't recall ever hearing of that before. According to Wikipedia,
the characters often break danced to relax,
which gave me an almost archaeological sensation of glimpsing a far distant, and barely imaginable, time, place, and culture.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:29 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Kidd Video opening song
posted by DirtyOldTown at 4:40 PM on October 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Much, much worse: Hammer Man (MC Hammer's cartoon) theme song
posted by DirtyOldTown at 4:43 PM on October 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


Man, DirtyOldTown, I remember loving Kidd Video. Now I'm not sure if I should just relish my childhood memories or feel embarrassed for having such poor taste as a child.

So, uh, anyone remember the show with the two race cars (possibly driven by a brother and sister), one blue, one red, and both were capable of minor changes in shape? Like the blue one could change its front end to a bulldozer or something?
posted by Ghidorah at 4:46 PM on October 12, 2013


Kidd Video was an attempt to re-do Yellow Submarine in the style of those cheap knock-off "Lisa Frank" folders that you knew were a knock-off because it was all electric guitars and synth keyboards and not unicorns and rainbows... except that doesn't even begin to explain how hypersaturatedly 80s the whole production was.

The good guys had a fairy sidekick and she wore legwarmers and an aerobics leotard. The bad guys were a rock band made out of anthropomorphic cats that looked like you had crossed The Misfits from Jem with the cats from the Cadillac Cats segments that were the real high point on the Heathcliff cartoon. The bad guys' boss looked like he could be the cousin of Dilbert's pointy haired boss, and he lived in a flying jukebox.

I wish I was making any of this up, because then I'd have my own imagination to blame for how this thing warped my development as a kid, and not some coked up network executive.


And Ghidora, that sounds like Pole Position, one of the few coin-op videogame to SatAM cartoon transitions that didn't entirely suck. Much better than Turbo Teen, of which I will say nothing more about.
posted by radwolf76 at 4:48 PM on October 12, 2013 [5 favorites]


Beat me to it, radwolf76.

Pole Position theme song
(and for comparison: Turbo Teen)
posted by DirtyOldTown at 4:51 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


I admit to being impressed. From this point, we should see how few details it takes you to find the intro.

Watching that Pole Position clip, I'm wondering, were there any cartoons from my childhood that weren't repurposed from their original Japanese background? I mean, what was Pole Position originally called before it got dubbed?
posted by Ghidorah at 4:56 PM on October 12, 2013


I could have sworn there was a pilot for this...which had the hovercraft seen in the intro. I also swear that it was part of a special fall cartoon line up event, but I'll also swear that my eight year old memory thirty years later can be pretty unreliable at times.

Still, I love watching these! Thanks for posting.
posted by Calzephyr at 4:57 PM on October 12, 2013


Someone please explain to me why Mr. T is traveling with a gymnastics team in this series.

Because: cocaine.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 5:00 PM on October 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


Actually, Pole Position was made specifically for US tv by DiC (who were originally a French company, but based out of the US by that time).

I'm sure the actual animation was outsourced to East Asia, but as far as I know, it's not an actual dubbed over import. I can see where it feels like it, but western productions quickly adopted many tropes from anime (like team pet, caution: tvtropes) when they saw that kids seemed to like them.
posted by radwolf76 at 5:08 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


That's actually a surprise. Pole Position seems so heavily influenced that I just assumed it was imported. Huh. I mean, as you say, they've got the team pet (and the little sister, the talking cars, the mysterious older man giving teenagers weaponized cars to fight crime), it just seems so animeish.
posted by Ghidorah at 5:15 PM on October 12, 2013


All of the SuperFriends intros

This show used to vex me, because when I would try to go back and watch it, it was just so silly, but I didn't remember it that way. Marvin & Wonder Dog? Ecch.

I came to find out that one season of this was done that was substantially less silly. Challenge of the Super Friends was a single season that wasn't done for comedy where the team had to track down 15 escaped supervillains. It's still not a speck on later cartoons like Batman TAS, but it's nowhere near as bad as the rest of the run.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 5:22 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Mr. T also starred in "T & T."
posted by reiichiroh at 5:02 PM on October 12


But not Mr. T and Tina, strangely enough.
posted by themanwho at 5:29 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I could have sworn there was a pilot for this...which had the hovercraft seen in the intro. I also swear that it was part of a special fall cartoon line up event, but I'll also swear that my eight year old memory thirty years later can be pretty unreliable at times.

This sounds familiar to me. I recall a two-page spread in a comic book advertising the new line-up. I think it also included Spider-man and his Amazing Friends, the Incredible Hulk cartoon and possibly Q-Bert.

Truly a golden age for children's television. Now I want a pop tart.
posted by wabbittwax at 5:38 PM on October 12, 2013


When I was little, I thought this show was the A-Team. At the time, I knew that the A-Team was a thing with Mr. T, but was completely unaware of the actual show. As a result, I have a false memory of the Mr. T cartoon opening with the gymnasts leaping into place in front of the A-Team logo. Even though I know it's wrong, I can still picture it really, really clearly.
posted by Metroid Baby at 5:55 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


DirtyOldTown: "Much, much worse: Hammer Man (MC Hammer's cartoon) theme song"

I'll see your MC Hammer and raise you with The Super Globetrotters.
posted by jquinby at 6:03 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


The bad guys were a rock band made out of anthropomorphic cats that looked like you had crossed The Misfits from Jem with the cats from the Cadillac Cats segments that were the real high point on the Heathcliff cartoon.

Dispute -- there were no high points to the Heathcliff cartoon. And it was CATillac Cats, undoubtedly for trademark reasons, yet that name never appeared in the show -- it wasn't until the age of the internet that I found out their gang (Riff Raff, Hector, Wordsworth and Mungo, how's that for a goofy potpourri of references?) had a name. They just appeared to be this random gang of street tough cats with a transforming car and a completely different art style from George Gately's newspaper strip. (Some of the Heathcliff characters themselves had different designs -- Heathcliff's owner Iggy looked nothing like his newspaper incarnation.)
posted by JHarris at 6:17 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


(I'm sure oneswellfoop will be around to school us all on this soon. Someone shine the FoopSymbol?)
posted by JHarris at 6:17 PM on October 12, 2013


I think a better question is how the gymnastics team is able to afford him.

Well obviously they're smuggling... um... something that isn't drugs... as they travel around the world.
posted by Naberius at 6:19 PM on October 12, 2013


I made a comment about awful TV cartoons some years back, where I categorized such travesties like the Happy Days cartoon where the gang went back in time, or Casper the Friendly Ghost in Outer Space, or Laverne and Shirley Join the Army. God there was a lot of crap on TV for kids back then.
posted by JHarris at 6:20 PM on October 12, 2013


This sounds familiar to me. I recall a two-page spread in a comic book advertising the new line-up. I think it also included Spider-man and his Amazing Friends, the Incredible Hulk cartoon and possibly Q-Bert.

The last part of that came from Saturday Supercade, released during the brief time window when arcade games were considered mainstream cool. It also contained the first animated incarnation of Mario, in a Donkey Kong cartoon (as well as the weird road trip-like Donkey Kong Jr.), Frogger as a newspaper reporter, Q*Bert as a high school student, and Pitfall Harry, which introduced niece Rhonda and panther Quickclaw to its mythos -- who then went on to appear in the game Pitfall II.

Fun fact: the part of my brain that remember this stuff is purple and rotten.
posted by JHarris at 6:24 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I remember a super friends episode where they were all captured and trapped in a big tank of water. There was voiced concern that they needed to get out quickly because if superman stayed in the water too long, he would start to rust.

I was maybe six or seven, and I still thought the equivalent of 'what is this horseshit?! Man of Steel isn't supposed to be literal?!'

God, the writing was so awful on most of these shows.
posted by Ghidorah at 7:09 PM on October 12, 2013


Dispute -- there were no high points to the Heathcliff cartoon.

Sometimes I forget that Clio didn't turn everyone into a furry, just a few of us. (And to be fair, I can't place all the blame on her, I had other influences.)


And it was CATillac Cats


Yeah, I remembered that part after the edit window closed.
posted by radwolf76 at 7:19 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


This show was formative for me and I'm pretty sure I'm a better person because of it.
posted by 256 at 7:20 PM on October 12, 2013


Nice play, jquinby. But now I have to bust out Gilligan's Planet.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:21 PM on October 12, 2013


Don't forget Chuck Norris: Karate Kommandos.
posted by edeezy at 7:34 PM on October 12, 2013


God help me, I watched every single cartoon in this thread as a kid. IIRC USA Network would re-run many of these as USA Cartoon Express, which is definitely where I watched the Mister T show.

I found a single episode of Pro Stars on DVD in college. A tiny part of me regrets getting rid of that when I moved. We did keep a VHS of Super Mario Brother Super Show, though.

But really, as mentioned upthread, Turbo Teen is the one that haunts my dreams to this day. A boy who fuses with his car and turns into a car when hot things touch him? Like a pizza slice fell on him and he wolfed..er...carred out?
posted by Tesseractive at 7:35 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


It's like someone watched Ranma 1/2 and said "You know what this needs? More Trans-Am."
posted by radwolf76 at 7:39 PM on October 12, 2013


I kind of remember the Mr. T cartoon (I was five when it was cancelled); I have a much clearer memory of Hulk Hogan's Rock 'n' Wrestling.
posted by Sys Rq at 7:43 PM on October 12, 2013


I still have a soft spot for ShirtTales.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:52 PM on October 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


HOLY CRAP: the entire first episode of Kidd Video... not that surprising it's online, but it's with the original commercials. My Little Pony, Strawberry Shortcake, just... WOW. Also features a Lionel Richie video.

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:02 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


You know what other show had a confusing premise for me at the time? The Gary Coleman Show. Apparently it was an animated sequel to a TV Movie I never saw, The Kid With the Broken Halo. Lacking that bit of information, I just thought it was a shameless ploy by the network for fear that ABC's Webster might somehow upstage their own star.
posted by radwolf76 at 8:03 PM on October 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


I used to have elaborate fantasies that Brooke Shields would adopt me and Gary Coleman and we'd be brothers.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:05 PM on October 12, 2013


Someone shine the FoopSymbol?

There is nothing I can add; MoonOrb, Mayor Curley, DirtyOldTown and the rest have done excellent work in covering the field of awful '80s cartoons.

I thought I knew a lot about cartoons but since Jerry Beck has revived his Cartoon Research site with contributions from a bunch of other experts (including an anime ace who has uncovered the Worst Anime Ever, and I believe him), I've felt like a third-rate pretender to the true authorities. In fact, Mr. Beck does an occasional show in L.A. with his own personal collection of "World's Worst Cartoons" (putting some on DVD)*, almost all from the '50s and '60s. Because even the sorry celebrity-based toons can't beat the awfullicity of... Bucky and Pepito (with extra points for ethnic stereotyping), Spunky and Tadpole (from Beverly Hills Productions, no less), Rocket Robin Hood (spacemen in tights?), Paddy the Pelican, the super-low-budget super-creepy "Syncro-Vox" of Clutch Cargo and Space Angel, the not-a-cartoon-but-a-bad-puppet-show Diver Dan, and the animated exercise show Mighty Mister Titan.

But seriously, this alleged animation of early teevee made Kidd Video look good, and the fact that the network executives of the '80s had grown up with it may have had as much to do with such shows as the cocaine.

*not to mention the sadly-almost-forgotten previously-posted-by-JHarris "Cartoon Dump" show.
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:25 PM on October 12, 2013 [5 favorites]


Somewhere around here I have the Mt T Animated Series Annual. I believe it is fulled with prose stories, photos, and the occasional comic strip, but i have never seen the cartoon it was based on until now.

Amazingly, it is as bad as I always suspected.
posted by Mezentian at 8:38 PM on October 12, 2013


DirtyOldTown: "Nice play, jquinby. But now I have to bust out Gilligan's Planet."

Oy.

I was going to fold, but I'll toss Pac-Man into the pot.
posted by jquinby at 8:39 PM on October 12, 2013


Breaking out the heavy artillery, are we?
Rubik, the Amazing Cube
posted by radwolf76 at 8:43 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


including an anime ace who has uncovered the Worst Anime Ever, and I believe him

Hey, that's Chargeman Ken! I linked to that a couple of years ago!

As for Paddy the Pelican... IT MAY VERY WELL BE THE WORST CARTOON OF ALL
posted by JHarris at 8:57 PM on October 12, 2013


For people who thought Thundercats made way too much sense: Tigersharks.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:57 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Already watched all of Thundercats and Tigersharks? SilverHawks.
posted by mbrubeck at 8:59 PM on October 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Actually, I kinda liked Silverhawks.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:00 PM on October 12, 2013


More USA Cartoon Express:

Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch
Inch High Private Eye
Jabberjaw ("JABBERJABBERJABBERJABBERJABBERJABBERJABBERJAW!")
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:03 PM on October 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan, featuring Jodie Foster as the voice of Anne Chan
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:08 PM on October 12, 2013


You can always tell the ones that never made it to syndication or cable, because the youtube comments are always filled with people who are so happy that can prove to their friends it actually existed and they aren't crazy:
Pandamonium
posted by radwolf76 at 9:16 PM on October 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


God, I barely remember Pandamonium. FREAKY.
posted by JHarris at 9:31 PM on October 12, 2013


One of the benefits of having a grandmother with over 20 grandkids was that she would buy her xmas gifts in bulk in clearance bins at Ben Franklin, sometimes for many years at a time to be distributed later. She was fond of board games. She also was very methodical.

One year my brother and I got our own copies some lame math game called S'Math. Therefore we were thrilled the next year when each of us got a copy of the Mr. T Cartoon board game, though neither of us knew the show existed, we knew of Mr T through WWF. We were somewhat less excited when the next year we each got copies of the same game again. What the fuck do you do with 4 copies of this game? We couldn't even give it to our friends.

I think she achieved her goal though. She gave us a gift we wouldn't fight over.
posted by WASP-12b at 9:35 PM on October 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


Tigerhawks! Silvercats! Thundersharks!
posted by JHarris at 9:36 PM on October 12, 2013


(Silverhawks is best announced with "SPAAACE EUNUCHES!")
posted by JHarris at 9:40 PM on October 12, 2013


I have always had a life-long love of animation, and I remember this show well, the animation was so bad it was kind of fascinating to watch. Most of the kids cartoons in the 1980's saved their best, most fluid, animation for the title sequence, then what you got in the show was much more cheaply done. But not Mr. T, the characters fly around the screen in bizarre and stiff way. I remember an episode where two of the characters jumped off a ledge in a museum that was about 50 feet high, and right before they landed they did a little flip in mid-air that somehow magically prevented them from being injured. Gotta love cartoon physics.

There were even worse examples though - go look up some episodes of the MC Hammer cartoon. The animation was done so cheaply it literally looks like a slide show.

There were a lot of terrible kids cartoons in the 1970s and 1980s. And a few good ones. (nods to The Real Ghostbusters and Robotech)

DirtyOldTown - Wheelie and The Chopper Bunch is my first memory of watching television. I would have been 3 years old.
posted by smoothvirus at 9:49 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Remember: Eat your school, stay in drugs, don't do vegetables.
posted by sourwookie at 10:10 PM on October 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


Aquaman! Back when no-one made fun of him!
posted by Mezentian at 10:23 PM on October 12, 2013


Don't forget the Centurions.
posted by Rangeboy at 11:53 PM on October 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oh, if we're going to start mining after-school weekday syndicateds now, here's another one for the "what do you mean it's not originally from Japan?" category:
Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors

Let's run down the list.

Missing Father and Adventurous Teenage Son on a quest to find him because they each have a half of of the Macguffin. Both have skunk hair.

Younger Sister who is telepathic and also a plant.

MULTIPLE team pets.

And rounding out the good guys are a Han Solo and a goddamned WIZARD.

Also, that's not even counting their oh-so-toyetic vehicles.

And the best thing? Like He-Man, Real Ghostbusters, and Captain Power, J. Michael Straczynski was a scriptwriter on this show, before he ever made it big with Babylon 5.
posted by radwolf76 at 12:41 AM on October 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


Yeah, you're pretty cool radwolf76. You wanna come over after school and play Nintendo?
posted by JHarris at 1:49 AM on October 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


I'm no good at it. My parents didn't get me one because they wanted a home computer instead, and they said I didn't play with the 2600 enough to for it to be 'worth it' whatever that means.
posted by radwolf76 at 2:17 AM on October 13, 2013


So, my Mr. T story was that I was total nerd girl and not in the [I'm secretly beautiful way] and some guys on the debate team were assholes but sort of funny assholes.

Anyway, one day at a debate tournament, for entertainment they told me to read some weird porn parody they had got ahold of where Mr. T was going into college students' dorms and coaching them as they orgasmed.

Friends, that fucked my shit up.
posted by angrycat at 3:56 AM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yikes. Count me against the "funny" part of that description, angrycat. They were just assholes (and I'm seriously trying to cut that term out of my usage -- but here, it seems justified).
posted by JHarris at 3:59 AM on October 13, 2013


I don't know. I can imagine a Mr T slash story would have a high potential amusement value. I pity the fool who doesn't, but then I can hear him moralising and I remember Mr T Ate My Balls as being amusing back in the day.

There is, of course, a "porn parody", which is NSFW at all. Because even though they went to the effort of covering the sex acts with clip art there is - in fact - an ejactulating penis popping into the frame at 1'32".
posted by Mezentian at 4:21 AM on October 13, 2013


The Godzilla Power Hour
The Tarzan/The Lone Ranger/Zorro Adventure Hour

...and a couple of live-action shows:

Jason of Star Command
Ark II
Electra Woman and Dyna Girl (which is sort of cheating - it was part of Sid and Marty Kroft's vast empire of strange shit)
posted by jquinby at 5:34 AM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Godzilla Power Hour yt

On my phone, but does that involve ... "And Gooooodzuki"?

Ark II yt

A show that stands up extremely well.
*jetpacks away*
posted by Mezentian at 6:35 AM on October 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Sometimes I forget that Clio didn't turn everyone into a furry, just a few of us.

Ah yeah, the girlfriend of the gang leader, noticably more sexily drawn, if with ubiqitous eighties leotards.
posted by MartinWisse at 6:43 AM on October 13, 2013


HOLY CRAP: the entire first episode of Kidd Video

I sort of vaguely remembered Kidd Video, from Sky or Super Channel or whatever, but seeing that brought it all back. Sort of the archetypical awful kid team cartoon: you got the zany one, the fat one, the supposedly handsome bland blond one and the far too hot to hang out with those losers in real life mixed race girl.
posted by MartinWisse at 6:46 AM on October 13, 2013


Sky Commanders. I had a bunch of the toys, their cables all got intertwined like a rat king.
posted by Mick at 7:11 AM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Starcom. Nuff said.
posted by MartinWisse at 7:17 AM on October 13, 2013


I was maybe six or seven, and I still thought the equivalent of 'what is this horseshit?! Man of Steel isn't supposed to be literal?!'

Maybe it was the one where Mr. Mxyzptlk turned them into the characters from Oz and Superman was the Tin Man.
posted by Fleebnork at 7:51 AM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Maybe it was the one where Mr. Mxyzptlk turned them into the characters from Oz and Superman was the Tin Man.

That seems a bit complicated for Super Friends.
posted by Mezentian at 7:55 AM on October 13, 2013


radwolf76: "You know what other show had a confusing premise for me at the time? The Gary Coleman Show yt . Apparently it was an animated sequel to a TV Movie I never saw, The Kid With the Broken Halo."

The Kid With the Broken Halo was no The Kid With the 200 I.Q., I can tell you that.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:21 AM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Chrysostom: "The Kid With the Broken Halo was no The Kid With the 200 I.Q., I can tell you that."

Both of you are On the Right Track.
posted by jquinby at 8:24 AM on October 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Oh man, I VIVIDLY recall Coleman living in a locker in that movie. That was messed up.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:26 AM on October 13, 2013


Maybe it was the one where Mr. Mxyzptlk

Nope. It was one where the Legion of Doom captured them, threw them in a water-filled pit, and the stupid wonder twins saved the day (only, of course, with an assist from the damn monkey) with their super-duper shape of a bucket, form of water combo.

I find it's better not to go back and re-watch some of these things. The original Thundercats? I saw a bit of that recently. Static images with only the lips moving. Painful, painful animation. I'm going to stick with my fond, yet wonderfully hazy memories.
posted by Ghidorah at 9:33 AM on October 13, 2013


80 comments in and no one's mentioned the contributions of Jack Kirby?
posted by Halloween Jack at 10:20 AM on October 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Man, DirtyOldTown, I remember loving Kidd Video. Now I'm not sure if I should just relish my childhood memories or feel embarrassed for having such poor taste as a child.

Embarrassment. Definitely embarrassment.
posted by scalefree at 10:52 AM on October 13, 2013


I don't know. I can imagine a Mr T slash story would have a high potential amusement value.

There's an old Eddie Murphy stand-up bit out there that might interest you.
posted by entropicamericana at 10:58 AM on October 13, 2013


All of the SuperFriends intros

Oh man. This show hit my impressionable, superhero-loving kid brain at just the wrong time so that there's still a part of my brain that thinks the Superfriends theme is the greatest, most majestic piece of music ever.

Aquaman! Back when no-one made fun of him!

And wow, look how much of the Superfriends Aquaman was a straight-recycle from the earlier 60's cartoon. Even the controlling-fish sound effect is the same.

The Godzilla Power Hour yt
On my phone, but does that involve ... "And Gooooodzuki"?


You better believe it does! Except you spelled it wrong: "Up from the depths, thirty stories high, breathing fire, his head in the sky. Godzilla! Godzilla! And Godzuuuukiiii." Wait, that song has almost as much majesty as the Superfriends theme. No one should ever trust my taste in music ever.

Not sure whether I which I wanted more as a kid, a Batman utility belt or that red button that summoned Godzilla.
posted by straight at 12:20 PM on October 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


there's still a part of my brain that thinks the Superfriends theme is the greatest, most majestic piece of music ever.

That, and the Godzilla theme song, are both examples of what I call Hanna-Barbera Brass, resulting from the discovery by H&B that over-the-top brassy, trumpet-laden theme music was a great deal less expensive to provide than good animation, and so every cartoon they made in a certain period features tons of it, from Superfriends and Godzilla through to The Smurfs and Shirt Tales.
posted by JHarris at 1:45 PM on October 13, 2013


Somewhere, Ruth Buzzi and Jim Nabors wait for someone to remember them...
posted by wittgenstein at 2:21 PM on October 13, 2013


The Kid With the Broken Halo was no The Kid With the 200 I.Q., I can tell you that.

I was going to say "So thats where the idea for his character on Buck Rogers came from," but looking at the air dates, the Buck Rogers cameos, both the stand alone episode and his reappearance in that series first season "clip show" came first.
posted by radwolf76 at 4:39 PM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Maybe it was the one where Mr. Mxyzptlk turned them into the characters from Oz and Superman was the Tin Man.

That seems a bit complicated for Super Friends.


Complicated doesn't even begin to cover it. The reason Mxyzptlk even had them there was that he'd somehow found a recipe for a potion that would keep him from being returned to the 5th dimension, and the ingredients needed were an electrified magic golden lasso (which he arranged by setting up a situation where Cowardly Lion Wonder Woman would have to use her lasso and a lightning storm to taze some boars), jellyfish jelly (dumped Scarecrow Aquaman into a river where he had to get jellyfish to waterproof his straw so he wouldn't get waterlogged), and lead (changed the yellow brick road to a kryptonite brick road to force Tin Super Man to use his X-Ray Vision to change tin to lead).

Superman caught on to the fact that something was up though and changed the lead back to tin as soon as he was safe, and the change made the potion fail.

Can't find a video clip, but here's one of the animation cels.
posted by radwolf76 at 4:58 PM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Not sure whether I which I wanted more as a kid, a Batman utility belt or that red button that summoned Godzilla.

And I know I'm stacking post on top of post here, but what makes you think Batman doesn't have that button on his utility belt?
posted by radwolf76 at 5:00 PM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Why doesn't Mxyzptlk just make those things himself with his cosmic powers? Oh, right, just a show, I should just relax, got it.
posted by JHarris at 5:00 PM on October 13, 2013


If I had to guess, the magic lasso probably was the sticking point. I'm not as versed in DC canon, but does being a 5th dimensional imp give unlimited control over magic, or does it just give you vast power that seems like magic?
posted by radwolf76 at 5:04 PM on October 13, 2013


But the jellyfish-- and the road--

And what about Scarecrow's brain?
posted by JHarris at 5:25 PM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


And what about Scarecrow's brain?

Still able to use Aquatic Telepathy, even without a diploma, apparently.
posted by radwolf76 at 6:57 PM on October 13, 2013


80 comments in and no one's mentioned the contributions of Jack Kirby?

Character designer? Mister T? Well, my mind is blown.
And " creative consultant " on "Chuck Norris: Karate Kommandos"?
I am stunned.
posted by Mezentian at 11:52 PM on October 13, 2013


Nothing beats Inhumanoids for all your 1980s Saturday morning body horror needs.
posted by tyro urge at 3:26 PM on October 14, 2013


Guys. Guys.

Apparently, the show that's the subject of this post that we've hardly talked about --

HAD A BREAKFAST CEREAL.
posted by radwolf76 at 10:04 PM on October 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


And it was pretty good if I remember... though I remember it being more Cap'n Crunchy than the ad suggests.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 9:51 AM on October 17, 2013


Yeah, I'm pretty sure it was basically T-shaped Cap'n Crunch.

Now a major motion picture!
posted by Sys Rq at 10:23 AM on October 17, 2013 [1 favorite]


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