May 27, 2007

Saturday Morning Cartoons

I was at a cook-out over the past weekend and the discussion turned to some of the big summer movies that are coming out in the next few days. A brother at the cook-out mentioned that he couldn't wait to see the new Transformer movie. It dawned on me that I don't even know what a Transformer is. I missed that whole generation of cartoons. In fact, I'm convinced that today's young people don't know much about cartoons because Saturday mornings are full of youthful soap operas ... not good ol' fashioned cartoons.
I grew up when you would watch cartoons on Saturday morning. Felix the Cat. Popeye. Magilla the Gorilla. Mr. Magoo. Johnny Quest. Speed Racer.

My 7-year old son didn't know who Dino was for chrissakes! NOTE: He was the pet dinosaur owned by Fred & Wilma Flintstones.
Anyhow, back to the Transformers. One of the kids at the cook-out went to his family's car and brought back a transformer doll or figurine or whatever it is called. When I saw it I realized that the Transformers people are simply Gigantor-on-steroids! I saw the Transformer and felt better when I realized that new school was simply a modern version of my ol' school!

C'mon ol' school villagers ... sing along with me!

Gi-GAN-tor, Gi-GAN-tor, Gi-GANNNN-tor.

Gigantor the space aged robot,
He is at your command.
Gigantor the space aged robot,
His power is in your hand.

Bigger than big, taller than tall,
Quicker than quick, stronger than strong.
Ready to fight for right, against wrong.
Gigantor, Gigantor, Gigantor.

Care to share your favorite Saturday cartoon memory?


Rosemarie said...

What a great topic, and highlights your lighter side. Although I did scroll down to see Serena in her bikini.

I found this great web site with the 70's Saturday Morning Schedule to help jog my memory. There I found HR Pufnstuff and Jackson Five listed. Other shows that I enjoyed that may not have been Saturday morning:

Electric Company
The Courtship of Eddie's Father
Family Affair
The Monkees

If you are game, come by and participate in the "Guess The Movie Contest."

Villager said...

RoseMarie - I did enjoy the Courtship of Eddie's Father and Family Affair ... especially the child actors in both shows. I never much understood the Monkees ... but, then again, I never really understood the Beatles.

peace, Villager

Martin Lindsey. said...

Gigantor? O.K. you're showing your age man (ha ha ha). But I was definitely down with Johnnie Quest as a Saturday rerun and Speed Racer and the original Spiderman as after school ruruns by the time I came around.

Let me hip you to the Transformers though. It was an 80's cartoon. Optimus Prime was the 18-wheeler leader of the good guys. The Decepticons were the bad guys. The first line of the lyrics were...

More than meets the eye,
Robots in disguise,

This one is right up there with all of my favorite Marvel & DC Comics heros that have come to the big screen over the last ten to twenty years (Took the kids to see Fantastic Four, Rise of the Silver Surfer last weekend). Cannot wait for the Transformers!

Jamie said...

Oh My! I go back even farther when Saturday was the day all children were dumped off at the theaters for a series of cartoons, a episode of a weekly serial, a travelogue, a news reel, and two movies --- they didn't have to see us little darlings for a minimum of five hours and it only cost a fifty cents.

the teach said...

Okay I'm showing my age. I remember Farmer Gray, Oh God!

Ingrid said...

Now you know I have to comment n this one. Every Saturday until I was about 11 or 12 I got up and watched New Zoo Revue @ 6 am and settled in for a full day of animated fun.

I watched the Transformers, Smurfs, Pirates of Dark Water, He-Man, Thundercats, Scooby Doo and the ever faithful Looney Toons.

I also watched the Superfriends.

Kids today have the cartoon network which takes the fun out of Saturday mornings. It seems like childhood has been shortened for this generation and that saddens me, but I smile when I remember...

La-La-La-La-La-La-La, La-La-La-La-La-La-La

It’s the New Zoo Revue, coming right at you...
Where three delightful animals have fun with what they do.

It’s the New Zoo Revue, coming right at you...

Keith said...


Man, I can't believe you left out Bugs Bunny! That was THE top cartoon bar none, far as I'm concerned. Period.

But then of course there was The Flintstones, The Jetsons, Topcat, Yogi Bear, Space Ghost, The Herculoids, Rocky and Bullwinkle (complete with Boris and Natasha and Aesop's Fables), Caspar the Friendly Ghost, Underdog (Have no fear! UNderdog is here!), Mighty Mouse, Wally Gator...

Shall I go on...?

Keith said...

..and Gigantor really was one of the coolest. I'd forgotten all about him. But I never missed him as a kid. Never.

Natalie said...

The Transformers were big part of my Sat morning routine along with Voltron (my favorite), Thundercats, He-Man, The Smurfs, The My Little Pony (for my sister), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and The Snorks. It was a great time. I also saw a god deal of the old stuff. My Mom always made me watch Astro Boy and there is a Gigantor movie somewhere in the house. The thing about Gigantor was that he couldn't transform. Not as cool.

Danielle said...

Hanna Barbara's Banana Splits, New Zoo Revue early on, Pee Wees Playhouse remember Lawrence Fishburne as Cowboy Curtis and Looney Tunes all the way through. Rosemarie reminds me of The Monkees. It was soo all over the place. The Monkees did a movie directed by Jack Nicholson called Head. They were also directly ordered not to speak of any social issues such as the civil rights movement or the Vietnam war.

As always...

Villager said...

Martin - My youngest was born in the mid-1990s ... so i guess I simply missed the whole Transformer phenomenon. I did collect comic books when I was a kid ... but, I was a big DC-Comics fan. I would like to see Silver Surfer. He seems pretty cool on the big screen.

Jamie - My dad tells me about those days when he was living as a kid in Tulsa, OK. He used to see westerns all the time. In fact, his favorite books to read are westerns. He used to come home and watch the news .. and at least once a week sit down to enjoy a full hour of Gunsmoke!

peace, Villager

Bart Simpson said...

Well, I don't belong to Ice Age..hehe...But I used to get my weekly dose of Popeye, Flintstones, Bugs Bunny and a few translated in hindi like The Jungle Book every Saturday. Simpsons came into my life a little later, but they refuse to move out! Hence my blogging name :D

Villager said...

Bart - I guess I was into my career when Bart and his family came into American culture. I don't think that I've seen more than two episodes in my life. However, I do like your name [smile]!

Danielle - Jack Nicholson directed the Monkees? Laurence Fishburne was in PeeWee's Playhouse? Say it ain't so!!!!!

Natalie I guess we were in different generations. I never watched any of those cartoons. My son had a love affair with the Teenage Mutant Turtles ... so I did get into them for a little while. I never much liked the rat though!

Keith - Yeah, Bugs Bunny and the Road Runner were the bomb! Do you remember a turtle and Mr. Wizard?

peace, Villager

Ed Padgett said...

As a child growing up in Los Angeles we only had seven channels of programming to select from, and this was on a twelve-inch black and white television set. And since I was the oldest child, my brothers and sisters enjoyed the cartoons I selected.

Our Gang brought laughs to all of us, to think children our age could have so much fun, and their parents were seldom seen, why couldn’t our parents be like this?

But we did watch Quick Draw McDraw, Gumby, Heckle and Jeckle, The Jetsons, Yogi Bear, The Loony Toon Cartoons, and many others with our bowls of cereal on Saturday mornings.

Personally I have given up watching television, but do subscribe to the Dish Network for my grandchildren, with over one hundred and fifty channels to select from. Yet, my grandchildren tell me “Papa, there’s nothing on television” unbelievable but true.


Villager said...

Ed - I remember those 7-channel Black & White television. In fact, we used to have the small set that sat on top of the biggern console for many years. And if you recall... we didn't have REMOTE CONTROLS in those days. You had to get up and go to the set to change the station!!

Thanx for reminding me about Gumby. I used to love Gumby!

peace, Villager