I have to thank my good friend Peter Carley for bringing these two cartoons to my attention. He had posted last week the news about an upcoming movie based on the Hot Wheels toy franchise manufactured by Mattel. I commented that I thought it was a major stretch to base a movie on something like Hot Wheels. Peter in turn pointed me to a precedent to basing a media product on Hot Wheels.
And here it is...
Oh good Lord.
Hot Wheels, featuring the racing exploits of high school student (really?) Jack "Rabbit" Wheeler, aired for two seasons on ABC Saturday mornings starting in the fall of 1969. Two of the voice actors featured on the series were Casey Kasem and, of all people, Albert Brooks! (Un?)fortunately, the cartoon has never aired since, nor has it ever been released on home video.
But that's not the only gem I discovered from this conversation.
A buddy of Peter raised the stakes of bad cartoons by posting this glorious discovery:
Yes, that was Super President, the cartoon about the President of the United States having super powers. Powers that, apparently, were anything the writers wanted them to be if they moved the story along. At least it had awesome voice work by Paul Frees. The series aired on NBC from September 1967 through December 1968. The series was canceled due to criticism that portraying the US President, even a fictional one, as a superhero sent a bad message to the rest of the world. The series was produced by Depatie-Freleng animation studios, which produced the Pink Panther cartoons among many others; the studio would be acquired by Marvel Comics circa 1980 and become Marvel Animation Studios.
Just when I think I've learned about every TV cartoon series that existed, fun stuff like this comes along out of the blue and amuses me to no end. Great stuff!