It’s Saturday morning, do you know where your children are? Back in the 1960s, my parents always did. We were sitting in front of our black and white TV, with a big bowl of Quisp, watching cartoons.
The folks at Warner Brothers sure got it right with these collections. The latest, Saturday Morning Cartoons 1960’s Volume 2 is every bit as good as Volume 1 was. The two disc set contains 12 shows, each of which originally were half-hour episodes.
Most of the shows revolve around a character. Take The Quick Draw McGraw Show for example. After Quick Draw opens the show by shilling for Kellogs, we get a ‘toon from Snooper & Blabber, one from Augie Doggie, and of course a Quick Draw McGraw. Add some unique funny business with the host and voila, you have a show.
The discs lean pretty heavily toward the Hannah-Barbera characters, but the most memorable moments come straight from the Warner vaults. The Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, and Road Runner Shows are outstanding. The 1959 “Baton Bunny” starring Bugs as the conductor of the Warner Brothers Symphony Orchestra is very cool.
Another classic is “The Wild Chase” from 1965. “The Big Race” is on, between the Road Runner and Speedy Gonzales. Of course their respective nemesis’ Wiley Coyote and Sylvester are there to cause some mayhem. This is a memorable one, and I won’t spoil the outcome by revealing who is actually the winner.
There are a few characters on this set I do not remember at all. In 1966 Hanna-Barbera introduced the world to “The Space Kidettes” who had their own show. This is one wacked out cartoon. There are four Kidettes who live in a space-clubhouse that looks to be made from an abandoned lunar module. They are forced to deal with bad guy Captain Skyhook and his trusty mutt Static, who are trying to steal their treasure map. Parents? Who needs 'em?
The ultimate Space-Age cartoon has to be The Jetsons. Thank you Warner for including “Elroy’s Mob.” The original run of the series was just 24 episodes, during the 1962-63 season. “Elroy’s Mob” is number 24.
The funniest moment for me comes when Elroy’s buddy Kenny Countdown is watching his TV wristwatch in class. Elroy looks over, and we zoom in on an episode of The Flintstones. Kenny has a great line here: “This must be the billionth rerun of The Flintstones.”
The only bonus feature to speak of is a five minute documentary titled “Completely Bananas: The Magilla Gorilla Story.” Apparently Magilla was the last of the Hanna-Barbera “funny” animal characters. They went fully into the next era of Johnny Quest type heroes after Magilla.
Saturday Morning Cartoons 1960’s Volume 2 contains five solid hours of cartoon fun. Now if I could just find myself a box of Quisp, I’d be all set.