Sunday, March 18, 2018

Toonfomercial: Donald Duck meets the Cheerios Kid (1955)

I have to imagine this next item aired during Mickey Mouse Club episodes on weekdays as well as during Heckle & Jeckle and other Saturday morning shows.

Donald Duck (Clarence Nash) needs help from the Cheerios Kid (Dick Beals) when Donald ignores his nephews' warning as he swims into shark infested waters.

Don't know how many of these were made. There's at least one more on YouTube.

Saturday Morning's Forgotten Heroes: Fangface vs. Ironmask (1979)

Fangface turns 40 this year. However, this time around, we've got a 2nd season offering also including Fangpuss.

The werewolves and their human friends end up in colonial times to thwart a modern-day pirate, Ironmask (John Stephenson), who intends to loot the past. Hmmm, that sounds familiar....

The time machine has a familiar look, because the producers recycled a design for a similar device used on The Scooby-Doo Show a couple of years prior. Of course, Joe Ruby & Ken Spears created both Fangface & Scooby-Doo.

Bart Braverman (later of Vega$) & Frank Welker modeled the characterizations of Puggsy & Sherman "Fangs" Fangsworth after Leo Gorcey & Huntz Hall of the Bowery Boys, which would explain why Fangs comes off as being dumber than a bag of hammers, though I think the language mangling was exclusive to Fangs & Puggsy.

Rating: B.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Looney TV: Wearing of The Grin (1950-1)

Begorrah! 'Tis St. Patrick's Day, so why not take a trip to the Emerald Isle, Ireland, of course, with Porky Pig in Chuck Jones' "Wearing of The Grin".

This was one of the first shorts where Eugene Poddany, who worked with Jones on quite a few Tom & Jerry shorts and some specials for MGM, composed the score, here, as you can see, working with Milt Franklyn. Unfortunately, Poddany didn't last long at WB.

Rating: A.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Saturday Morning's Forgotten Heroes: Hong Kong Phooey vs. Goldfisher & Green Thumb (1974)

Hiiiiiii-yaaaaaaaa! Hong Kong Phooey (Scatman Crothers) returns to battle two more offbeat crooks, Goldfisher & Green Thumb, while, as Penrod Pooch, trying out new inventions, which only serve to irritate Sgt. Flint (Joe E. Ross, ex-Help! It's The Hair Bear Bunch).....

Fresh off his DC Comics debut in Scooby-Doo Team-Up, Phooey moves into the DC Universe in a 1-shot special, coming at the end of May, in which he teams with no less than Black Lightning (who will be rocking his original look). Denys Cowan is drawing this one. We'll talk more about that over at The Land of Whatever this weekend.

Episode rating: B.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Getting Schooled: Fifteen, aka Hillside (1991)

John Binkley had an idea for a teen soap opera. No, nothing like the current Riverdale, which aspires to be a post-modern hybrid of Peyton Place, Twin Peaks, & Saved by The Bell. In fact, Fifteen, known by the alternate title, Hillside, after the show's high school setting, in Canada, was safe and non-toxic entertainment for teenagers. I would guess middle school age and up.

As Fifteen, the series aired on Nickelodeon, but was originally ticketed for the Disney Channel, but the Mouse House wasn't interested. Their loss, it seems. Four seasons, totaling 65 episodes, aired between 1991-3, and introduced viewers to future film star Ryan Reynolds (Billy).

The Peter Rodgers Organization, which has acquired popular primetime shows of the 50's & 60's, such as The Rifleman & I Spy, also acquired Fifteen, making it available on their YouTube channel.

Curiously, Wikipedia's Hillside page says CBS owns the show. Hmmm.........

No rating.

Scooby-Doo returns to primetime for one night only

With the NCAA basketball tournaments underway, CW is putting their Thursday & Friday schedules on hold for 2 weeks. That said, when Supernatural returns March 29, it'll have its most famous guest star yet. Scooby-Doo.


Supernatural, in its 13th season, has done animation before, but it was a while ago. As far as casting goes, so far, only Matthew Lilliard (Shaggy) is confirmed. The rest of the crew (Frank Welker, Kate Micucci, Grey Griffin), though, haven't been confirmed. We'll know for sure in 2 weeks, but this promo for the episode should tie you over until then.

We'll have a full review when the episode airs.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Muppets in high school? (Will Rogers Institute PSA, 2006)

During 2005-6, the Muppets appeared in a series of PSA's for the Will Rogers Institute. These spots were shown at AMC Theatres across the country, meaning they didn't get played in theatres in the home district.

In this piece, Ms. Piggy, Gonzo, & Fozzie hassle a teenage girl with reminders about school functions and so on, and she writes notes on her arm so she can remember. Now, of course, that's wrong, because she should've had a note pad. Teri Hatcher (Desperate Housewives, ex-Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman) appears at the end, along with Kermit, and Statler & Waldorf.

There would be more spots, featuring Wayne Brady, Tommy Lee Jones, and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. I'll see if I can find those for future use. Since this involves teens, I'd think this could've gotten some play on network or syndicated television, too.