Tag: Cartoons

1983 NBC Saturday Morning Cartoon Lineup

So way back in 1983, I would have been just 5 years old.  Even though I was that young, I can still vividly remember this lineup, and watching the heck out of it on Saturdays.  I seriously doubt I ever changed the channel, because I know I watched ALL of these shows, with the exception of The Flintstone Funnies.  Maybe I was eating cereal at time of morning, who knows.

This lineup is a who’s who of some of my absolute favorite cartoons from any era.  The Shirt Tales were a perennial favorite with Bogey and Rick being my guys.  The Smurfs never disappointed, and even today I still watch those classic episodes with my daughters.  Same goes for Alvin and the Chipmunks as well, as we own all of the DVD compilations that were released several years ago.  Mr. T is easily in my top 5, and once his show was over, I would break out my Mr. T action figures and relive the action.  Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends and The Incredible Hulk were big in my house too due to my brother being a huge comic book fan.  And rounding out the lineup was Thundarr the Barbarian, which was my favorite cartoon of that genre right up until He-Man came along and took over the world….err, Universe.

Do You Remember Morning Funnies Cereal?

 

Morning Funnies Cereal

If you’ve ever read much of what I’ve written, you should know by now that food is one of the more nostalgic things in my life.  I can tie so many great memories to different foods, meals, and restaurants that I could probably do this whole blog focusing just on food.  So in keeping with that tradition, I want to talk just a minute about one of my favorite cereals from the 80’s, Morning Funnies.

Morning Funnies Cereal was produced by Ralston Cereals in 1988 & 1989. It was a super sweet cereal, bright in color and shaped like smiley faces.  The taste and shape wasn’t the hook for this cereal though…..the box was. The box featured comic strips on the front and back panels. In addition, the back of the box featured a full size flap that opened up and featured even more comics on the inside. The company actually won an award in 1988 for “innovative packaging” for the fifth panel design.

The comics featured were Dennis the Menace, Beetle Bailey, Hagar the Horrible, Hi and Lois, Family Circus, Luann, Marvin, Funky Winkerbean, and What A Guy!.  Not a bad lineup, but still it left something to be desired when Garfield, Peanuts, and The Far Side were all the rage at the point this cereal was on the market.

 

 

Morning Funnies Cereal

 

The cereal was canceled in 1989 due to poor sales. The ultra sweetness of the cereal turned off parents, and the lack of fresh cartoons turned off the kids.

From my own experiences, I remember seeing the commercials for the cereal and feeling that I just had to have it. For one thing, it was part of my morning ritual to read the funny pages from the newspaper while I ate breakfast every morning, so this cereal seemed right up my alley.

More Food Stuff:  Back When Pizza Hut Was An Experience | Why Wendy’s Ain’t Like It Used To Be

 

My mother bought just one box. She rarely went for gimmicky cereal like this, but caved under my constant pressure. I don’t remember what the cereal tasted like, but I do remember enjoying reading those comics on the box…..at least for the first two or three mornings. After that, the novelty faded and I was back to reading the fresh daily comics from the newspaper.  I remember looking at the comics on the boxes at the grocery store, and they were all the same.  Maybe if they had different strips on different boxes in the same case, it could have led to more sales.  As it were, you could grow very tired of seeing the same strip every morning.

It seemed like a good idea at the time, but quickly fizzled in execution. However, I would love to see it back on the shelves at the local grocer just to give it one more shot.

Other people who remember Morning Funnies Cereal and have written about it:

Dinosaur Dracula
Retroist
Saturday Mornings Forever

 

Wax Pack Flashback: Masters of the Universe Cards from 1984

Wax Pack Flashback

I don’t know about you, but when I was younger, trading cards were a big part of my everyday life.  I would spend plenty of my allowance on packs of baseball cards as well as non-sports cards of all kinds.  Then I’d smuggle my cards to school and trade them with friends, or sometimes just drool over their collection.  There was actually a summer where every single day with my friends was spent trading cards.

There is something very nostalgic to me about opening a pack of cards.  I’ve went on a bit of a binge lately and purchased a lot of old wax packs on ebay.  Everything from old baseball cards to Dick Tracy movie cards to Young Indiana Jones Chronicles cards.  I’ve bought a lot.  So with that said, it’s time to start opening these bad boys up and seeing what’s inside in what I like to call Wax Pack Flashback!

Up first is a pack of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe cards from 1984.  This was an 88 card set, that also featured 21 different stickers, with one being randomly inserted into each pack.  The cards are in the animated style of the He-Man cartoon, and actually re-tell the episode titled “Like Father, Like Daughter” in comic strip form.  They used scenes from the episode along with word bubbles to tell the story, and the backs of the cards went more in-depth about the story being told on the front of the card.

 

He-Man Trading Cards

 

Just looking at the pack, it scream cool.  It’s funny, but I was a super huge mark for all things He-Man back in the day, but at the time, I didn’t even know these cards existed.  When I first came across a pack of them, I thought the packs themselves just looked really cool.  The packs featured four different characters on them.  He-Man, Skeletor, Teela, and Orko.  I’ve got one each of the He-Man and Skeletor packs featured prominently in a display case in my living room.

 

 

The back of the pack shows the Topps logo quite well, but nothing else of note really.  A lot of card packs from this era would feature some kind of candy ad on the back of the wrapper.

Continue reading “Wax Pack Flashback: Masters of the Universe Cards from 1984”

My 5 Favorite GI Joe A Real American Hero Episodes

It’s time to dig in deep, and talk about one of my favorite cartoons of all time….G.I. Joe:  A Real American Hero.  As a kid, I fell in love with not only the cartoon, but the action figure line as well.  G.I. Joe was always my go-to toy at playtime, and my preferred choice of after school cartoons.

Recently, Jason over at Rediscover the 80’s has been doing some really fun posts centered around the cartoon.  I approached him about doing a cross-over event where we present our 10 favorite episodes of the cartoon, with each of us reminiscing on 5 episodes.  So once you’re done here, be sure to head on over to his place and check out the other half of this list.  As a bonus, we’ve also decided to throw in our favorite G.I. Joe mini-series as well!  Let’s get to it.

The Funhouse

This episode was from earlier in the series, and one of the first batch to be released on home video cassette.  I remember very fondly the Christmas of ’86 that I received a copy of the episode Satellite Down, and my cousin Tim received a copy of The Funhouse.  We each watched our own copies numerous times over a couple of days, and then switched off.  The episode itself may not be a strong one, but the nostalgia I feel for it keeps it high on my list.

Anyway, Cobra kidnaps a bunch of scientists and holds them hostage someplace sinister to lure the Joe team there.  Once they arrive, they discover the temple where the scientists are being held is one giant “funhouse” that Cobra Commander has put together just to screw with the Joes.  Once inside, the Joe team discovers this, and splits up into three teams in order to hunt down Cobra Commander.  

Dusty and Airtight take off in one direction, and soon find themselves in a room full of falling balloons.  Dusty decides to pop one, and it releases a gas that make his hallucinate.  He sees Airtight as an enemy, so Airtight has to work some voodoo magic on him and knock him out with a karate chop.  He then sets off on his own to find Cobra Commander, but gets undone when he runs into a room full of giant Jack in the Boxes and gets taken out by a newspaper swat from one of them.

Meanwhile, Alpine and Bazooka’s path leads them to a roller coaster, and that leads them through a shooting gallery of cobra robots.  Bazooka takes a hit and goes unconscious as Alpine vows revenge.  Unfortunately, he finds himself running on an oversized bowling lane, and gets taken out by a falling bowling pin.

The final duo, Flint and Lady Jaye, end up running into robotic tin soldiers who all look like Cobra Commander.  They take out most of the robots, only for one to sneak up on Lady Jaye and take her out of the fight.  Flint goes on to find Cobra Commander’s control room, but he sets a bomb that is going to destroy the whole island before he, along with Zartan and The Baroness escape to another hideout.  Flint and some of the Joe cavalry rescue their teammates and escape the island in Sky Strikers just in time.

Wild Bill had been watching for anything to leave the island, so the Joes are able to track them pretty easily to their new location.  The Joes launched an all out assault on the Cobra base, yet Cobra Commander and his cronies escaped once again, but the Joes were able to rescue the captured scientists to end the episode on a successful note.

Continue reading “My 5 Favorite GI Joe A Real American Hero Episodes”

What You Didn’t Know About Your Favorite 80’s Cartoons

If you thought you knew everything about you favorite 80’s cartoons, think again!  From the many great, and some not so great, cartoons that aired in the 80’s there is an abundance of things about them you never knew.  Check out these little known facts about 25 of your favorite cartoons from the 80’s!  Let us know which ones surprised you the most.


G.I. Joe

G.I. Joe A Real American Hero

Fact: G.I. Joe premiered in 1983 with a 5-episode story called “The MASS Device“. The fact that is was shown in 5 parts made it the first animated mini-series in television history.

 

Bravestarr

BraveStarr

Fact: BraveStarr has the distinction of being the last cartoon series produced by our beloved Filmation studios. Filmation was also responsible for bringing us The Archie Show, Fat Albert & The Cosby Kids, and it’s most famous creation, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.

Read about the rise and fall of Filmation Studios in the excellent book, Lou Scheimer: Creating the Filmation Generation  

Also, you can read more about Bravestarr over at The Robot’s Pajamas

Wuzzles

The Wuzzles

Fact:  The Wuzzles only ran for 13 episodes, making it the shortest running animated Disney series of all time.

 

Shirt Tales

The Shirt Tales

Fact: The Shirt Tales series was created from a line of Hallmark greeting cards. When the cards lost popularity, so did the cartoon series.

Get the Shirt Tales Complete Series on DVD here

 

Continue reading “What You Didn’t Know About Your Favorite 80’s Cartoons”

Thundarr the Barbarian Cartoon

Thundarr the Barbarian

Forget the global chaos myth that was Y2K. In the world of Thundarr the Barbarian, the end of civilization occurred six years earlier, when, in 1994, a runaway planet hurtled between the earth and the mooon, “unleashing cosmic destruction.” Now, 2000 years later, Earth is a savage world occupied by wizards, mutants and monsters.


Thundarr the Barbarian on DVD


…And one superhero, of course—the blonde, muscular Thundarr. The title barbarian was once a slave of the evil wizard Sabian, but he was set free by Princess Ariel, Sabian’s stepdaughter. Taking pity on the poor, good-looking slave, Ariel gave him a magic sabre that could send out an energy ray capable of destroying any foe. With the help of this Sun Sword and a lionlike mutant pal named Ookla the Mok, Thundarr and Ariel fought all manner of futuristic enemies to save their beloved Earth.

This post originally appeared on the long defunct Yesterdayland website.  We archive it here to preserve it.

Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends Cartoon

Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends

Marvel Comics’ famed webslinger returned to Saturday morning in 1981 with a pair of new companions. In this incarnation, Peter Parker was a college student at Empire State University, boarding with his Aunt May. While at ESU, Peter met fellow students Bobby Drake and Angelica Jones. The group ended up exchanging secret identities—Peter was the wall-crawling Spider-Man, Bobby was frosty mutant Iceman, and Angelica was red-hot fellow mutant Firestar. Bobby and Angelica moved into Aunt May’s as well (along with Angelica’s dog, Ms. Lion), and Peter and Bobby converted their room into a secret crimefighting HQ (revealed when anyone shifted the football trophy on the mantle). Continue reading “Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends Cartoon”