FAVORITE CARTOONS (plus memories):
(TOP 5, then the rest in no particular order)
1 - Garfield and Friends - it was hard to choose an actual number 1 favorite, but I did it! Garfield and Friends is my absolute favorite cartoon of all time. It all started in I believe in 1987 when my Dad got me my first Garfield book for my birthday - "Garfield Out to Lunch". I wasn't yet aware of Garfield and I'm not really sure why my Dad got me it... but the rest is history. I LOVED the book, and from then on I wanted every book they had released for Garfield. So my Dad got me a few more books here and there, but for Christmas later that year, I got a TON. I believe at that point I had book volumes 1-12 or 13, plus all the books that later became specials (or did the specials become books? I'm not sure), plus the "treasury" books they released which had Garfield comics in color. Also that year, I saw my first Garfield animated special -"Garfield's Halloween Adventure". I had already read the book version, so to see it animated on screen was pretty awesome. Plus, it was the first time I heard what the character's voices sounded like! Garfield didn't surprise me too much but I remember thinking that Jon's voice was too deep, and wasn't what I pictured in my head, lol. Needless to say, I recorded that special on VHS and watched it countless times. Then I would get to see all the other Garfield specials, because at the time Garfield was reaching a peak of popularity, so they were re-running his specials regularly. A Garfield Christmas was definitely a favorite of mine. In 1988, I watched the 10th birthday special for Garfield where they revealed that Garfield would have a Saturday morning cartoon debuting that year. I was freakin excited! I still remember when I watched the first episode aired "Peace and Quiet, Wanted Wade, Garfield Goes Hawaiian". It was pretty cool to hear what the US Acres voices sounded like because I had a few of those books too! They were hard to find though and were short-lived. So obviously at this point, every Saturday morning was awesome because Garfield was on. They even expanded him from half hour to 1 hour because of the popularity. I have many favorite episodes but I don't want to go off about this subject. To this day I STILL love Garfield, I still collect the books, and I still go back and read them. Plus I still go back and watch Garfield and Friends, which I am happy to have all on DVD... but I even kept my old VHS copies (most of which I transferred to DVD) because watching it with that grainy VHS look, plus where it included the CBS bumpers, and cut off commercials and such, still adds that nostalgic feeling. I watch the specials still as well, especially the Christmas one at Xmas, and the Halloween one that started it all. HOWEVER, I do not like the Garfield movies nor the latest cartoon that came out. To me, it's hardly Garfield at all. They took away all the characters' personalities and it just doesn't have that same feel to me. I gave it a try, but it just didn't have it. Oh well! I'm glad the feel of the comics stayed the same though! I will still be a fan of Garfield forever!
2 - Challenge of the Gobots - Of course many of you will be like WTF? Gobots, really? YES, REALLY. Gobots is my second favorite cartoon of all time. The unfair comparison to Transformers has always hurt the show and I think that too many people dismissed it before trying it. If more kids had given it a chance back then as an individual show, I guarantee you it would have had a bigger fan-base. And that's what happened to me. I was completely unaware of the whole comparison to Transformers. I don't recall what came first for me, the toys or the cartoon. But all I know is, once I discovered it in 1984, I was HOOKED! Hooked on the cartoon, and hooked on the toys. I'm sure my Dad had a field day of getting all the Gobots toys for me because I wanted them all! And I could never miss the cartoon on weekday afternoons after school. I believe that era from 1984-1986 or 87 was the Gobots era for me. I kept watching it until they stopped airing the reruns I think, and Garfield then took over. I just can't even describe what Gobots meant to me. Watching that show was the "dreamy" part of my childhood. And by that I mean my memories don't just see it as a cartoon I watched... It was a world that I felt I was a part of. That half hour every day was like me visiting another world and being part of the story... joining the Guardians battle the Renegades every day. Even though the episodes were only 22-23 minutes, it felt like hours to me. That was when most things in life went in slow motion, which I'm sure some of you would agree with. Summers seemed like forever, and so did everything you watched. My fascination with the cartoon took me beyond what I was watching. And let's give kudos to the creators of the show. It really did have a tremendous amount of action, drama, humor, suspense, etc... A lot more went in to that show than people I think. If it affected me like that, I'm sure it affected others. They really did a great job with the different personalities of the characters. Leader-1 was the straight hero who you always rooted for to do the right thing to defeat evil, Turbo was the smart alec tough guy, Scooter was the silly sometimes cowardly sidekick. On the bad side, Cy-Kill was the evil menacing main villain, Crasher was the humorous laughing second in command, and Coptur was the more bumbling but still evil sidekick. And they brought in many other characters throughout the episodes to add different twists, and it was always cool to see a toy you had appear on the show. I remember the 5 part origin story and the Gobotron Saga being particularly effective for me. Those stories were drama filled and you stayed with it all the way to the end. The Saga was my favorite and is the one episode (or 5 episodes) that I still continue to enjoy to this day. I even really enjoyed the music in the background which sometimes I can randomly hear in my head and remember certain instances that went with the music. I think it was 15 years after the show went off the air, before I was able to watch it again. I had discovered Ebay and Yahoo auctions (at the time) and bought a few commercially released VHS tapes. I strangely never recorded the show, except for 1 episode which sadly got taped over. I think I was too young to know how to work a VCR.. or care. And then I found a guy online who taped a bunch of episodes and was selling copies. So I was happy to finally see these eps years later and all those great memories came back to me. Years after that I got the whole series on DVD, and I remembered each and every episode, or at least parts of them. They now just finally commercially released the series on DVD, which I thought would never happen. They still have 30 episodes to go, but thank you Warner Bros. for finally recognizing people like me out there! =) I could go on and on but I'll leave that for a page by itself. Gobots still holds a special place in my heart and I'll always have a big smile on my face when thinking about those times laying on the floor in the living room watching Gobots on a bulky TV that had a knob and antenna, and no remote.
3 - Duck Tales - What can be said about DuckTales that hasn't been said already? It is by far one of the best cartoons of all time, and unlike what I think about Gobots, many people would agree with me. It has the catchiest most fun intro theme there ever was, and arguably the greatest cast of characters to ever be on a cartoon. Scrooge McDuck, Huey, Duey, Luey, Launchpad, Gyro, Webbie, Mrs. Beakly, Duckworth, Glumgold, Magica, Beagle Boys, Doofus, Gizmo Duck, the list goes on. An amazing show with awesome adventures, great stories, hilarious humor, instances of mystery and suspense, and a great great musical score/soundtrack. You couldn't wait to get home from school and catch the next DuckTales episode. It truly made weekday afternoons for kids in the late 80s. Most of the episodes are now on DVD, which I gladly have and it is yet another show I can always go back and watch and enjoy. DuckTales, woooo-ooooo!
4 - Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - This list would not seem right at all without Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Admit it, when you first heard that name back then, you were like "huh?". Well that's what I was thinking at least. I think it was either an ad I read or a toy commercial I saw when I first heard the title name. It definitely did not sound like something that would become one of the most popular franchises ever. I wasn't even sold on the toy commercials at first (which came before the cartoon I think). But when the cartoon starting airing on weekdays... yeah... it was awesome. Or was it tubular? bodacious? 4 turtles that were like human teenagers, who were ninjas and loved to eat pizza... and their teacher/father figure was a human rat. Yeah that's what I would have thought of for a hit cartoon too. Ok so it came from a comic book, but still! Who thought of this stuff?? Lucky for them, they did a tremendous job with the cartoon. Each of their different personalities were memorable... with Michelangelo being an easy favorite, and who didn't love the evil but mostly bumbling Shredder and Krang? This was another show to look forward to every day after school, and it later became an awesome hour of turtle power (that rhymed!) on Saturday mornings. Their popularity would last pretty much forever. Their first live action movie was very memorable... and the rest, not so much. But the cartoon series did go on for nearly a decade! It kinda lost itself in the later years as I'm sure writers were running out of ideas... but those first few years will go down in history. The entire series is now on DVD, and I have most of them minus a few later seasons. And it's yet another series I can go back to from time to time to watch and enjoy. This ridiculous sounding cartoon is one of my favorites, and millions would say the same thing. Cowabunga forever. I am aware they re-made the cartoon a few times and made more movies later but I am not going to address that too much. I hope the new generation enjoys them but I'll stick my old school TMNT! =)
5 - Scooby Doo - Again, you can't NOT include Scooby Doo in a top 80s cartoon list. All the Scooby Doo variations that aired in the 80s (minus Pup Named Scooby Doo) were pretty similar so I am categorizing all of them in this one entry. However, although I love each variation of the show, like Scooby Doo Where Are You, Scooby Doo Movies, Scooby Doo Show, etc... my favorite was Scooby Doo and Scrappy Doo. Yes, another show that most people bash, mainly because of Scrappy Doo. I don't get it, when I was a kid I liked Scrappy. I liked that he added a little bit more to the show and I wasn't annoyed by him at all. It followed the same formula as the rest... catch a bad guy who is posing as some monster/ghost/ghoul/etc... and solve a mystery. Shaggy always had the funniest lines, and Scooby you just had to love. Fred, Vilma, and Daphne each added enough to make the show fun and interesting. I can understand people not liking Scrappy but I guess after 20 years of a show with Scooby being the only dog, maybe some older kids/people just couldn't accept him. Well I liked the show as a whole, Scrappy or not. And the Scooby Doo shows are all classic to me and you can see he's still going strong to this day. I may be one of the only sad ones that has to see Scrappy bashed and even pointlessly turned into a villain in the live action movie! Scooby always loved and protected Scrappy no matter what, like a big brother so when he smacked Scrappy in the movie, the kid in me was smacked too!! Ahhhhhh!
He-Man - This is another given. He-Man was loved by all kids. It had to make this list.
Filmation Ghostbusters - Nope, not the Real Ghostbusters! The "other" Ghostbusters!
Captain N the Game Master
Denver the Last Dinosaur
Super Mario Bros Super Show