August 31, 2020
You can see the announcement here.
He was best known as Cyclops, aka Scott Summers, in X-Men: The Animated Series and Spider-Man: The Animated Series. He was also Drax in Silver Surfer, Hades in Mythic Warriors: Guardians of the Legend, and Billy Blazes in Rescue Heroes, and provided voices for Piggsburg Pigs! and Ultraforce.
August 30, 2020
Saturday Morning Preview Specials were prime-time showcases for the upcoming Saturday morning season on the networks. They were typically hosted by stars from the network's other shows as well as other celebrity guests, and offered clips from the upcoming programs. Below you will find as any of the previews specials from the 1980s as can be found on the internet at the moment.
August 29, 2020
It wasn’t until the late 60s that Saturday mornings were beginning to get into full swing. Content with airing primetime reruns and a few new shows here and there, that all changed in 1966 when CBS revitalized its schedule with an action-heavy slant. When CBS showed massive success, the other networks followed and Saturday morning suddenly became good business. So, how would the networks advertise to their targeted audiences to tune in every week? Simple: advertise in comic books! For almost every Saturday schedule for decades, there was an artfully designed cartoon representing the networks’ schedules in every major publication. They even made sure to cover their bases with ads in TV Guide and newspapers so that parents would be aware shows for their kids would be on.
(CBS, September 14-December 7, 1985)
Walt Disney Pictures Television Animation Group
Brian Cummings – Bumblelion, Flizard, Peter Parafox
Kathleen Helppie-Shipley – Butterbear
Henry Gibson – Eleroo
Bill Scott – Moosel, Brat, Officer Eaglebeagle
Jo Anne Worley – Hoppopotamus
Alan Oppenheimer – Rhinokey, Crocosaur, Mr. Packcat
Stan Freberg – Narrator
The Wuzzles was one of the first two series to be produced by the newly-formed Walt Disney Television Animation, the other being Adventures of the Gummi Bears. However, the series was already in production by the time Michael Eisner was named the CEO of The Walt Disney Company and envisioned the company’s return to television. Disney had made an arrangement with Hasbro to produce a cartoon that would center around characters they could market and sell as toys. The premise of the characters would be the fusion of two different animals into cute hybrids.
While Hasbro had greater control over the looks of the characters and their concepts, with Disney’s Jymn Magon and Gary Krisel trying to reconcile their wants with the realities of animation, Disney was left fully in charge of coming up with the overall story and personalities. The initial pitch concocted by comedy writer Lenny Ripps featured a zoologist and explorer, Marlin P. Wuzzle, having discovered the island of hybrids and naming them “Wuzzles” and the island “Wuzzle Island” after himself. A tornado struck the island, sending many of the creatures around the world and each episode would be partly dedicated to Wuzzle retrieving them, while the other half would be dedicated to the remaining Wuzzles trying to keep King Croc from taking over the island.
|Rhinokey, Hoppopotamus, Butterbear, Eleroo, Bumblelion and Moosel.|
Ultimately, it was decided to simplify the story to focus on just the Wuzzles and their world, with Mark Evanier being handed the reigns to develop the series. The show focused on the daily lives of the Wuzzles on the Isle of Wuz where almost everything was combined, such as the fruit appleberries. Butterbear (a bear/butterfly, Kathleen Helppie-Shipley) was the protagonist of Ripps’ original pitch—as well as originally a male. The one thing that remained intact through her constant revisions was her penchant for gardening. The sports-loving Bumblelion (bumblebee/lion, Brian Cummings) had a crush on Butterbear and tended to rush head-first into situations. Eleroo (elephant/kangaroo, Henry Gibson) was Bumblelion’s best friend who tended to be a bit of a klutz and constantly forgot what he stored in his pouch. Moosel (moose/seal, Bill Scott in a nod to his well-known role of Bullwinkle J. Moose) was the youngest and possessed a wild imagination. Hoppopotamus (rabbit/hippopotamus, Jo Anne Worley) could be a bit of a diva, but also very sweet. When the situation called for it, her size and strength made her the toughest of the group. She also had a crush on Bumblelion. Rhinokey (rhinoceros/monkey, Alan Oppenheimer) was a fun-loving prankster who took any opportunity to pull jokes on his friends and be obnoxious. Although they all had wings, only a few of them could actually fly.
|Crocosaur with Brat and Flizard.|
Serving as the main antagonist was Crocosaur (crocodile/dinosaur, Oppenheimer). He was lazy, vile, ignorant, bad-tempered and an all-around bully that did anything to get what he wanted. And what he wanted was usually whatever the other Wuzzles got—but without putting in the same effort to get it. His chief sidekick was Brat (boar/dragon, Scott), who only communicated via various sounds Crocosaur understood and was generally incompetent. Crocosaur’s other sidekick, Flizard (frog/lizard, Cummings), was more agreeable of the trio and tolerant of the Wuzzles and was often charged with repairing rifts that developed between Crocosaur and Brat.
|Showing some love.|
The Wuzzles debuted on CBS on September 14, 1985. Along with Evanier, the series was written by Ken Koonce, Bob Rosenfarb, David Weimers and Ted Perry. Because Disney Animation wasn’t fully operational yet and they hadn’t done television animation for some time, some of the production work and animation was farmed out to Murakami-Wolf-Swenson so that could secure Fred Wolf as a producer and director while getting some valuable guidance from him. Likewise, MWS farmed out the animation work to TMS Entertainment. The series’ theme was performed by Stephen Geyer while Thomas Chase and Steve Rucker composed the rest of the music. Satirist Stan Freberg served as the show’s narrator who often broke the fourth wall.
Evanier made casting suggestions to Disney that were largely followed up on, except for one. Evanier wanted Daws Butler to voice Rhinokey, feeling he would be the best fit. However, his association with Hanna-Barbera kept Disney from even considering pursuing him. Evanier’s instincts were ultimately proven right when Oppenheimer tested poorly in the role. However, audience dissatisfaction was the least of the show’s problems. When it debuted, it was scheduled up against Gummi Bears on NBC which surpassed it in the ratings. Also, Bill Scott ended up dying of a heart attack that November, leaving several roles vacant. Since Wuzzles came before Eisner’s time and wasn’t entirely a Disney production, it was decided to refocus their efforts on Gummi Bears (where Scott’s roles were recast) and future Disney Animation programs.
|The Isle of Wuz.|
Wuzzles moved over to ABC for a season of reruns at a different timeslot so as not to be competing against Gummi Bears again. It would eventually make its way over to The Disney Channel and Toon Disney. Overseas, since it and Gummi Bears aired on the same network, it performed significantly better. In part, that was because the first episode as a theatrical featurette alongside a re-release of Bambi in the United Kingdom and Peter Pan in Germany. Along with that, Wuzzles has only seen home video releases outside of the United States in three-episode collections typically themed towards a specific character. The Wuzzles toyline lasted a bit longer than the show and ended up featuring a few characters that were never adapted. A large amount of companion merchandise was also produced, including books, card games, action figures, clocks, radios and more.
The Wuzzles appeared twice in Robot Chicken. In “Sting Me in the Hole”, they contemplate how their parents mated to create their odd combinations, while “The Fly is a Wuzzle Too” played up the lead character from the horror movie The Fly as a Wuzzle. In the Phineas and Ferb episode “The Chronicles of Meap”, a parody of Wuzzles toys—Bango-Ru—were featured. Costumes used in Disney theme parks that were accidentally sold off have made appearances in music videos, like The Chicks’ “Ready to Run” (Moosel), movies, like Old School (Eleroo), and televisions shows such as Grounded for Life, Malcolm in the Middle and Sonny with a Chance (Butterbear).
“Bulls of a Feather” (9/14/85) – The gang tries to convince Eleroo to return the baby brahma bullfinch she adopts while Crocosaur plans to use it to get rich.
“Hooray for Hollywuz” (9/21/85) – Hoppopotamus pursues her dreams of becoming a star.
“In the Money” (9/28/85) – Bumblelion’s newfound wealth puts a strain on his friendships.
“Crock Around the Clock” (10/5/85) – When Crocosaur’s house is destroyed by a storm, he moves in with Butterbear and tricks her out of all her food.
“Moosel’s Monster” (10/12/85) – Moosel’s imagination goes wild to the point he believes a friendly monster is just in his head.
“Klutz on the Clutch” (10/19/85) – Rhinokey’s crazy driving gets him banned from the upcoming race.
“Bumblelion and the Terrified Forest” (10/26/85) – Bumblelion and Hoppopotamus head into the Terrified Forest to rescue Butterbear from an evil witch.
“Eleroo’s Wishday” (11/2/85) – Eleroo uses the wishing well to grant him the ability to fly.
“Ghostrustlers” (11/9/85) – The Wuzzles avoid a plague by moving to a ghost town that’s actually inhabited by ghosts.
“A Pest for a Pet” (11/16/85) – The gang gets revenge on Rhinokey for all his pranks, causing him to leave Wuz.
“The Main Course” (11/23/85) – The gang escapes pirats by sailing to an island where Hoppopotamus is mistaken for a god and set to be sacrificed to a volcano.
“Class Dismissed” (11/30/85) – The gang tries to class themselves up to get invited to a ball while Crocosaur bets Butterbear he can turn Brat into a sophisticated Wuzzle.
“What’s Up, Stox?” (12/7/85) – Wealthy Tycoon gives the gang a money tree that Crocosaur plans to steal for himself.
August 27, 2020
You can read the full story here.
He worked for Hanna-Barbera Productions where he co-created many of their better-known properties, especially Scooby-Doo, with his partner, Ken Spears. He also did work for Krofft Television Productions and DePatie-Freleng Enterprises before Fred Silverman at ABC set them up with their own studio, Ruby-Spears Productions.
The shows he’s worked on include Space Ghost, The Herculoids, The Adventures of Gulliver, Cattanooga Cats, The Banana Splits Adventure Hour, The Perils of Penelope Pitstop, Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, Help!...It’s the Hair Bear Bunch, The Funky Phantom, The Barklesy, The Houndcats, Bailey’s Comets, Dynomutt, Dog Wonder, Jabberjaw, Electra Woman and Dyna Girl, Wonderbug, Magic Mondo, Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels, Bigfoot and Wildboy, ABC Weekend Specials (episodes), Fangface, The Plastic Man Comedy/Adventure Show, Heathcliff (1980), Thundarr the Barbarian, Goldie Gold and Action Jack, The Scooby and Scrappy-Doo Puppy Hour, Mork & Mindy/Laverne & Shirley/Fonz Hour, The Puppy’s Further Adventures, Saturday Supercade, Rubik, The Amazing Cube, Alvin & the Chipmunks, Dragon’s Lair, Turbo Teen, Mister T, It’s Punky Brewster, Lazer Tag Academy, Superman (1988), Dink, the Little Dinosaur, Piggsburg Pigs!, and Wild West C.O.W.-Boys of Moo Mesa.
August 22, 2020
RUDE DOG AND THE DWEEBS
(CBS, September 16-December 16, 1989)
Marvel Productions, New World Television, Sun Sportswear
Rob Paulsen – Rude Dog
Frank Welker – Caboose, Seymour, Rott
Peter Cullen – Winston, Herman
Mendi Segal - Reginald
Dave Coulier – Barney
Ellen Gerstell – Ditzy Kibble, Gloria
Jim Cummings – Satch
Hank Saroyan - Tweek
Rude Dog is a stylized Bull Terrier created by artist Brad McMahon in 1986. The character was contracted to Sun Sportswear to be featured on a line of surfing and skateboarding-related clothing containing angular designs and vibrant colors. The name “Rude” was chosen as a nod to the rude boy subculture of ska that was prevalent at the time. Along with the apparel, Rude Dog was expanded into merchandise such as lunch boxes, keychains and toys. As part of the marketing, Sun commissioned an animated series from Marvel Productions.
|Rude Dog addresses Tweek, Kibble, Barney, Satch, Winston and Reggie.|
The show focused on Rude Dog (Rob Paulsen), aka R.D., who owned a delivery service out of an auto garage and drove around in a pink 1959 Cadillac. He hung around with a motley crew of dim-witted dogs known as the Dweebs. The Dweebs were rescued by R.D. from the dog catcher, and he took it upon himself to try and teach them to be hip. They consisted of stuttering dachshund Caboose (Frank Welker) who was afraid of trans and often made train sounds; uptight bulldog Winston (Peter Cullen using an English accent) who believed himself of high culture; smooth and vain fox terrier Reginald (Mendi Segal, impersonating Jack Nicholson); great Dane Barney (Dave Coulier using a southern accent); Chinese crested mix Ditzy Kibble (Ellen Gerstell); beagle Satch (Jim Cummings, impersonating Ed Wynn); and easily-frightened chihuahua Tweek (Hank Saroyan). R.D. also had a girlfriend, Gloria (Gerstell), a famous poodle who drove a 1953 Corvette. They often found themselves having to deal with vicious cat Seymour (Welker), dog catcher Herman (Cullen), and Herman’s dimwitted rottweiler assistant, Rott (also Welker).
Rude Dog and the Dweebs debuted on CBS on September 16, 1989 with episodes broken up into two segments, each. R.D. often broke the 4th wall, addressing the viewers. Despite the fact that they were dogs in a human-populated world, no one seemed to be put off by the fact that they could talk. Or drive cars. The show was written by Pamela Hickey, Dennys McCoy, Kayte Kuch, Sean Roche, Chantel Sausedo, Sheryl Scarborough, Mark Stratton, J.R. Young, Lois Becker, who also served as script supervisor, and Saroyan, who developed the show, was also a producer and composed the theme music. Robert Irving composed the rest of the music with Saroyan. Animation duties were handled by Akom Productions.
|Rude Dog cruising in his car.|
The show performed well for the network, but there was growing concern that the kids watching would confuse Rude Dog for Budweiser’s Spuds MacKenzie and be inclined to drink beer. CBS removed the show after its run and replaced it with reruns of Dungeons & Dragons. Rude Dog eventually returned in June of 1990 and kept running until the new fall schedule in September. Celebrity Home Entertainment released some episodes onto VHS in 45, 85 and 120-minute formats, as well as on laser disk, as part of their “Just for Kids Mini-Features” line. Some of the tapes were released with a special pink and blue color scheme, as opposed to being regular black. In 1990, Leisure View Video released 70-minute VHS compilations in the United Kingdom. Polyband handled the release of the tapes in Germany. In 2007, Jetix released three two-episode compilation DVDs in the United Kingdom. As of 2016, the rights to Rude Dog had been reclaimed by McMahon and launched a new website with new merchandise.
“Hello, Mr. Kitty? / The Fish Who Went Moo” (9/16/89) – R.D. takes the Dweebs to the zoo to inspire them to stand up to Seymour, which puts them in the sights of Herman and Rott. / R.D. allows the Dweebs to get a pet goldfish, but Barney brings home a cow instead.
“Dweebiest Dog on the Beach / Dweeb-illac Dilemma” (9/23/89) – Herman lures the Dweebs into a trap with the promise of a beach talent show. / Reggie goes to clean the Cadillac and ends up losing a hubcap.
“No Dweebs Aloud / Ding-a-Ling Kitty” (9/30/89) – R.D. takes the Dweebs to the museum where they try to fight their boredom. / Seymour hits his head and begins thinking he’s a dog, joining the Dweebs.
“War of the Dweebs / Dweebs in Space” (10/7/89) – Winston accidentally tunes the TV to a movie that makes the Dweebs think the Earth is being invaded. / Reggie tries to take Satch’s place when he gets a chance to go into space, and Seymour has plans to foul up the trip for them.
“Nightmare on Dweeb Street / Dweebsy Kind’a Love” (10/14/89) – R.D. decides it’s time to cure Caboose of his fear of trains. / The Dweebs try to help Tweek attract the dog next door.
“Call of the Dweeb / Dumbell Dweeb” (10/21/89) – The Dweebs set out to help Kibble earn her Pup Scout merit badges on a camping trip. / The Dweebs try to restore Satch’s confidence after he botches a quiz show.
“Waiter, There’s a Dweeb in My Soup! / Boardwalk Boss” (10/28/89) – The Dweebs crash R.D.’s date with Gloria. / R.D. takes the Dweebs to a carnival where Herman and Rot try to capture them.
“To Kibble or Not to Kibble / Dweebsday Afternoon” (11/4/89) – Kibble decides to change herself in order to impress other girl dogs. / NO SYNOPSIS AVAILABLE.
“Dweebochondriacs / Surprise, You’re Itch!” (11/11/89) – NO SYNOPSIS AVAILABLE.
“Leave It to Tweek / Polly Wanna Dweeb?” (11/18/89) – NO SYNOPSIS AVAILABLE.
“Winston’s Family TreeRot / Pretty Dweebs All in a Row” (11/25/89) – A mistake by Satch leads Winston to think he’s related to Rot. / NO SYNOPSIS AVAILABLE.
“The Hiccuping Bandit / Dweeb Your Manners” (12/2/89) – NO SYNOPSIS AVAILABLE.
“Tuesday the 14th, Part Dweeb / Home Sweet Dweeb” (12/16/89) – NO SYNOPSIS AVAILABLE. / Herman tricks Barney, Tweek and Caboose into carrying a tracking device to lead him to the Dweebs.