Greeting and salutations! In my previous post, I mentioned I wanted to return to one of my favorite blog features, Saturday Morning Recreated. I decided not to waste any time and get right back into it!
For those who don't know, with this feature I post an old advertisement (usually found in comic books) for a broadcast network's Saturday morning children's lineup, then attempt to feature a clip or episode from each of the shows mentioned. It's not nearly the same as sitting in front of a big TV watching the shows as they aired, but it's a small attempt at bringing those Saturday mornings of my youth back.
This feature was created by classic TV blogger Kliph Nesteroff and I've continued it with his permission. The ads are provided by the Branded in the 80s blog created by Shawn Robare (Hi Shawn!).
Now, on with the show(s)!
We relaunch the feature at the blog with ABC's lineup from the fall of 1982. According to the ad, the lineup starts at 8:30am rather than 8am, as was usual for the networks; strange that they would start a half hour later this year. First up at 8:30 is a show that is strange, bad, fun, and trendsetting all at the same time. It's also one of the most, if not the most 80s show ever to hit Saturday mornings: Pac-Man!
Here, Pac-Man is given arms and legs, as well as a family, as he tries to escape the bite of the Ghost Monsters, which is a name I love. They're not ghosts, they're not monsters--they're ghost monsters. Yet with cred like that, they're the most inept creatures you'll ever find.
See for yourself. Here is the series' very first episode!
Despite the utter goofiness of this series, I loved it as a kid, and I wasn't alone. The series ran for two seasons and was the first of a long line of video game-inspired Saturday morning series.
Next up at 9am is a cartoon version of The Little Rascals. I couldn't find a clip of this anywhere, but there is a primetime Christmas special that's out there that inspired the weekly series.
At 9:30 is a holdover from the 1981 season, Richie Rich. Richie was paired with Scooby Doo in the previous year, but is featured solo here.
The 10am-11am hour demonstrates another interesting trend of the networks, especially ABC--animated versions of their primetime sitcoms. Two cases in point--Mork & Mindy and Laverne & Shirley (wow, two ampersands!). Whenever such a conversion from live action to animation was made, one major tweak was added to "kiddify" the cartoon series, usually involving a wacky animal. Here, Mork has an alien dog, and Laverne and Shirley join the army and have a talking pig as a drill sergeant voiced by Ron "Horshack" Parillo of Welcome Back, Kotter. I am NOT making this shit up!
Next from 11am to noon is the Scooby and Scrappy Doo Puppy Hour. Scooby and Scrappy are already familiar to everyone, but I have no recollection whatsoever of the second half of the hour. Something about puppies and sheriffs that look like John Denver, apparently.
At 12 noon is the perennial ABC Weekend Special.
Wrapping up ABC's Saturday morning is a TV institution, American Bandstand. Granted, the clip I present here is from 1979 not 1982, but whose counting?
I hope you enjoyed this trip down Saturday Morning Lane. If you enjoyed this, please check out my other installments (assuming the clips are still valid--many of them aren't) and stay tuned for more Saturday Mornings Recreated!