Remember that one day when you could wake up without an alarm? When you would get your favorite bowl of cereal and sit between the hours of 8 and 12? This is a blog dedicated to the greatest time of our childhood: Saturday mornings. The television programs you watched, the memories attached to them, and maybe introducing you to something you didn't realize existed. Updated every weekend.
For a history of The Flintstones franchise, check out the post here.
They grow up so fast.
The characters of Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm.
Flintstonesdoing well in syndicated reruns—particularly on Saturdays—CBS executive Fred Silverman approached Hanna-Barbera in 1970 about doing a revival. However, he wanted to
make it a teen-oriented and musical series to try and duplicate the successes
of Filmation’s Archieseries and their
and the Pussycats. Joe Ruby and Ken
Spears were assigned the task of making the
modern Stone Age family even more modern. They radically aged the children of
their principle characters to teenagers, and gave them a gang of friends that
could play together as a band whenever the story required it. The result was The
Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show.
Pebbles, Bamm-Bamm and their gang cruising around Bedrock.
Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show debuted on CBS on September 11, 1971. It focused
on the wacky misadventures of teenaged Pebbles Flintstone (Sally Struthers),
her neighbor and boyfriend Bamm-Bamm Rubble (Jay North), and their friends:
Moonrock Crater (Lenny Weinrib), a genius inventor; Penny Pillar (Mitzi
McCall), an overweight girl obsessed with being thin; and Wiggy Rockstone (Gay
Hartwig), a girl who lived by the daily horoscopes. Often, they would find
themselves in sticky situations made even stickier by Pebbles’ schemes to get
them out of trouble, which often backfired (a callback to the schemes of her
father in the original series). Other times, they were at odds with Pebbles’
rival, snobbish Cindy Curbstone (Hartwig), and a biker gang called The Bronto
Bunch. The elder Flintstones and Rubbles made the occasional appearances on the
show, but they were no longer the focus. Another thing of note is that while
Bamm-Bamm did seem to pull off the occasional impossible feat here and there,
the super strength he was originally depicted with as a baby was significantly
successful, CBS decided to expand their Flintstones franchise with the
creation of The Flintstone Comedy Hour. Along with new adventures
featuring the elder characters, the Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm characters
were given new shorts and a band called “The Bedrock Rockers” that performed
during the show in between segments. Reruns of Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm aired
as the second half-hour of the Comedy Hour. As Struthers had become
committed to her role on the sitcom All in the Family before the original first episode ever even aired, Mickey Stevens replaced her for all the new material produced for
the Comedy Hour. When the show was renamed The Flintstone
Comedy Show, ThePebbles and Bamm-Bamm reruns were
dropped from its format and later aired as part of the weekday syndicated Fred Flintstone and
Friends. It would make the rounds later on
cable channel Boomerang.
The second of three Jim Carrey movies turned into
cartoons, based on the film Ace Ventura:
Ventura (Carrey) was a private investigator residing in Miami, Florida.
However, he was unique in that the only cases he took involved animals; missing
pets and the like. Ace’s clientele choice is second only to his choice of
wardrobe (striped pants, boots and loud shirts), hair styles (a sweeping upward
wave), and loud, crude and eccentric personality. All of that together left Ace
with insufficient work to pay the bills and the joke of police officers he
frequently came in contact with. Regardless, Ace was hired to find out what
happened to Snowflake, the bottlenose dolphin mascot of the Miami Dolphins, who had suddenly
disappeared from his tank.
Ace Ventura movie poster.
The movie was conceived by Jack Bernstein, who wanted to
do a comedic take on Sherlock
Holmes and gained additional inspiration from one of the “Stupid Pet
Tricks” segments on Late Night with David Letterman. Carrey
was cast in the role after it was offered to and turned down by Rick Moranis. Ace’s mannerisms
and personality was cultivated from one of Carrey’s earlier characters, Overly Confident Gay Man,
when Carrey found the script read funnier when done in that style. Carrey also based
his performance on the movements of a bird, rounding out Ace’s bizarre persona.
Co-written and directed by Tom
Shadyac the film was released on February 4, 1994 to mixed reviews.
However, it became a box office success and put a sequel on a fast track.
Carrey was paid $15 million to reprise his role, and the following year Ace Ventura: When Nature Callswas released on November 10th. This would be Carrey’s
first and only sequel to one of his movies until 2014’s Dumb and Dumber To, citing
the lack of challenge he faced as an actor returning to the same character. It
was also the last installment of the Ace franchise featuring Carrey,
with a poorly-received 2009 televised sequel/spin-off film, Ace Ventura Jr.: Pet
Detective, capping things off entirely.
Ace, even more animated than before.
While the second movie was in
production, an animated series was in the works from Nelvana, developed by Duane Capizzi. The series
carried on from the movies, following Ace (Michael Daingerfield, who provided a
few of Carrey’s ADR lines for the sequel when Carrey was unavailable) and his
monkey sidekick, Spike (Richard Binsley), as they investigated a series of
animal-related crimes. Other characters from the first movie carried over
included police officers Emilio (Greg
Burson) and Aguado (Al
Waxman) and Ace’s landlord, Schickadance (Vince Corazza), whom Ace always
had to avoid when he came around to collect the rent in a running gag.
The actual brains of the operation.
Despite being toned down for the Saturday morning audience, Ace retained
a good deal of his crude humor--from making his butt talk to shoving various
items up his nose and showing a general lack of disrespect towards, well,
everyone. A large part of the tonality could be attributed to the writing staff
including one Seth MacFarlane,
who would go on to fame upon creating Family Guy. Butch Hartman, who would find
great success with The
Fairly OddParentsin 2001, also contributed a script to an
episode. All the memorable catchphrases were in the show, including
“Allllllllllllrighty, then!”, “Like a glove!” (whenever Ace crashed his car
into a tight parking spot), and “Spank you very much” (instead of a straight
When you're the only pet detective, you get some really famous clients.
The show’s final episode on CBS
featured a crossover with other Jim Carrey-based show: The Mask: The Animated Series (which
incidentally shared several of the writers). The crossover began on the earlier
The Mask episode “The Aceman Cometh,”
which dealt with Ace being hired by Stanley Ipkiss (Rob Paulsen), aka The Mask, to find his
dog, Milo (Frank Welker), who was kidnapped after his brain was switched with
that of a scientist. At the end of the episode, Spike stole the mask, forcing
Stanley to travel to Florida to retrieve it in “Have Mask, Will Travel.” Both
characters retained their distinctive animation styles while appearing on each
other’s shows; The Mask’s being a more realistic comic book style while Ace was
more stylized to match his cartoonish personality.
Despite Ace’s inability to find a substantial audience, its ultimate
cancellation was a matter of circumstance and timing. CBS had decided to
jettison its Saturday morning cartoons in 1997 and turn to outside companies to
provide their content. Nickelodeon
acquired the broadcast rights to air reruns of the show and commissioned a
third season that began on September 13, 1999. While essentially the same show,
there were several notable differences between the two runs. The Nick version
included a new intro and animated title cards introducing the episode names and
their writers, whereas the CBS version just superimposed them over the
beginning of the episode. The character designs received some tweaks and
brighter colors; in particular making Ace’s features more exaggerated. Ace also
moved his operations from his apartment to an actual office, although he
retained the menagerie of animals that lived with him while jettisoning the
running gag with his landlord. After those these final 13 episodes, the series
ended permanently in 2000.