Zim Animation Teases 3D Intros To He-Man And More!

You might remember Zim Animation from the post I shared on Halloween two years ago. It was a 3D computer rendered version of the intro to the classic Real Ghostbusters cartoon. But that wasn’t the only bit of awesome retro inspired 3D work that Zim Animation has produced.

Why back in 2014 he in fact delivered the 3D intro to the 19802 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!

It appears that Zim Animation though is more than willing to keep bringing us 3D versions of popular animated series. To prove this the Vancouver, Canada based animation team have put together this short teaser. With the idea in mind that they will eventually include short clips – mashed together with various classic characters. Like the Thundercats, Masters of the Universe, and Batman.
Zim Animation

One can hope that in addition we might see some of the Transformers included as well! Furthermore is it too far a stretch to believe that G.I. Joe might make up the roster of retro cartoons to make the cut?

Without further ado here is Zim Animation’s 3D Remake Mashup!

With what we could see in that teaser – I assume this new project will look like someone is flipping channels. If you want to help support Zim Animation in this new project, you can totally visit their Patreon Page. Moreover make sure to check out the awesome rewards for pledging your support to this endeavor. Reward such as first looks at the work in progress and communication with the animators as well!

Popeye Met The Defenders Of The Earth In 1972?!

Back in 1985 one of my favorite animated series was Defenders of the Earth. Numerous times on The Retroist I’ve mentioned my fondness for pulp characters. Of heroes of the Golden Age – like The Shadow, The Phantom and others.

Thanks in fact to the 1980 Flash Gordon film. I came across an old collection of comic strips from King Features Syndicate at my local library. Which is of course how I was introduced to the likes of Mandrake the Magician and Lothar. Which like The Phantom was a creation of Lee Falk as well. They even had old Popeye collections from the E.C. Segar strip days!
Popeye

So you can easily imagine my joy when the Defenders of the Earth series debuted one morning. Bear in mind that if you didn’t have access to a TV Guide you were generally caught unawares about a new animated weekday show.

Themecstasy

Until last night however I wasn’t aware that the Defenders of the Earth had grouped together before 1985. Back in 1972 in fact for Popeye Meets The Man Who Hated Laughter – which was part of ABC’s Saturday Superstar Movie!

[Via] Muttley 16

When I stumbled on this I felt for a moment like I was reading an issue of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Moreover these early Defenders were joined by another King Features Syndicate hero – Milton Caniff’s Steve Canyon.

That is not even the most interesting part of it. The group that we would come to know as the Defenders of the Earth were brought together for a very special mission.

The Defenders of the Earth circa 1972.

In Popeye Meets The Man Who Hated Laughter, the US government asked the team to locate missing comic strip characters. Such as Blondie and Dagwood.

Beetle Bailey and Sarge.

As well as Popeye and Olive Oyl of course!

To say nothing of characters from Henry, Hi and Lois, Tiger and Prince Valiant. In addition to Bringing Up Father, Little Iodine, Snuffy Smith, and more.

Popeye Meets the Man Who Hated Laughter concerns itself with the villainous Professor Morbid Grimsby. A wretch who plans on banishing all laughter in the world – aided by a super computer as well as Popeye’s nemesis, Brutus. Inviting the cast of comic strip superstars aboard a yacht – the S.S. Hilarious. Taking them to the island hideaway of Professor Grimsby, where they will be his prisoners.

It’s up to the proto-Defenders of the Earth to locate the missing characters. Now in view of just how awesome this TV special really is, I should warn you about something. The sound isn’t that good. But in all honesty we are all incredibly lucky that Stupid Dim Bulb was able to upload this rare 1972 movie.

While it would take the Defenders of the Earth 13 years in fact to return to animation. Popeye was back in action in 1978 with The All New Popeye Hour!

[Via] Cartoons Intro

Superman Anti-Smoking PSA

Superman Anti-Smoking PSA

If a Superman Anti-Smoking PSA couldn’t convince you to not try smoking as a kid, I am not sure what could. These ads are not familiar to me. I never saw them when I was growing, but I believe they were created in the UK. At least that is what I would guess from the accents. One things for sure, these kids aren’t from New Jersey. I, like many people, discovered them when they started being posted on the internet.

According to online sources, the Superman Anti-Smoking PSAs were created specifically for the Health Education Council and their anti-smoking campaign. They were animated by Eric Goldberg for the Richard Williams Studio. Goldberg is an American animator who has worked for both Warner Bros and Disney. At Disney he worked on Aladdin, Hercules, Pocahontas and much more.

Superman would appear with the villainous Nick O’Teen in multiple print and broadcast PSAs. The print ads included a form you could send in to get more info about not smoking. The print ads are okay, but these animated PSAs really shine. You can find out more about the Superman Anti-Smoking Print Ads which were written about right here on the site by Hayden Yale.

What makes them great? Well, the animation is solid and Nick O’Teen is a surprisingly creepy villain. The voice acting on Superman leaves something to be desired. At times he almost sounds Russian and all the time he sounds like someone trying to do an American accent. For some reason, hearing this faux accent on Superman makes me very happy.

My favorite PSA is the first one you will see in the video below. It is very much like all the PSAs, but has some nice touches that make it great. For one, Superman appears to kill Nick O’Teen. He picks him up and I assume like so many problems he has to face, simply throws it into the Sun. A solution to problems I wish I had access to.

Then Superman discusses how he knows cigarettes are bad for people. He is using his X-ray vision to look inside of us. While doing so he sees our cancer ravaged lungs and is disturbed.

This makes me wonder about something I am sure many Superman fans have wondered about. How often does he use his X-ray vision? More importantly what is the effect of using this vision on the poor people he has sworn to protect?

I was never much a of a reader of the Superman comic, but I would guess that Superman’s X-ray vision is only X-ray in name alone. Something people understand just by name. The power itself, which really couldn’t work the way X-rays work since it requires film and stuff, is something a lot more complicated.

Still, I do love that he mentions the power and that Superman is always watching us. Not just on the outside, but the inside as well.

Watch this wonderful collection of Superman Anti-Smoking PSAs

Batman and Robin

“Lost” Episode Of The Adventures Of Batman And Robin?

Calling 1995’s The Adventures of Batman and Robin Sega CD a lost episode isn’t an outright fib. However the full truth is that what fans of the Warner Bros. Batman animated franchise have dubbed as “lost”. Is in fact the 16 minutes of animated footage used as the cutscenes during the gameplay.
Batman and Robin

Granted that does not mean the animation when joined together constructs an actual story. At least not one of the quality we fans became accustom to with the 1992 to 1995 show. Which without a doubt raised the bar for animated television!

[Via] Bugs Bunny

In the case of the Sega CD’s The Adventures of Batman and Robin however there are strong ties to the classic animated series. Not only did Kevin Conroy return to voice Batman for the cutscenes. He was joined by series regulars like Ron Perlman (Clayface), Bob Hastings (Commissioner Gordon), John Glover (The Riddler), Arleen Sorkin (Harley Quinn), Mark Hamill (The Joker), and Adrienne Barbeau (Catwoman) to name a few.
Batman and Robin

Furthermore the story for the game was handled by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm. The screenplay was written by Dini with the animated sequences directed by Timm.

On the negative side the animation isn’t up to the same standards as what was seen in the television series. On the positive side since it was designed for a game it didn’t have to follow the same rules in terms of violence. Which is why you will witness some rather more intense fight sequences.

Case in point when Batman goes after Poison Ivy’s plant creature with an axe!

Now sit back and enjoy the “lost” episode of The Adventures of Batman and Robin!

[Via] Comic Ghost

If you perhaps have a little more time on your hands, you can in fact watch the entire game. Thanks to John Brain’s YouTube channel you can see the game from start to finish. Provided you have about an hour to spend viewing the walkthrough!

Mario Paint

Watch The TMNT Intro Via Mario Paint!

While it is certainly fair to say that the 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon series was aimed at children. It nevertheless helped make the previously underground comic book characters into media superstars. To say nothing of the merchandising empire it would create with toys, clothing, and a new comic series based on the animated series. Having said that though I don’t believe anyone ever expected to see the intro rendered by way of the Super Nintendo’s Mario Paint program!
Mario Paint - Mike Matei

This was done by Mike Matei of Cinemassacre. Furthermore it is not as if he digitized the opening intro of the animated show. He drew each frame by hand – starting in July of this year and just finishing in December. Each Mario Paint animation cell took him generally a half hour or more.
mike-matei-tmnt-mario-paint

What I’m saying is, Mike delivered something very special. In addition to his hard work, throw in the cover of the TMNT series song by James Ronald. You then have a bit of animation that reaches EPIC levels of awesomeness!

Enough of my jabbering. Sit down and watch how you use Mario Paint to bring the TMNT intro to life!

[Via] Cinemassacre

I really want to thank Daniel XIII for the heads up on this!
Turtle Power

Remembering The Mouse on the Mayflower

I am a creature of habit.

Every year when November 1st rolls around, I open the Holiday Special Cabinet in my entertainment center. (Yes, I have a Holiday Special Cabinet. Don’t you)? I put away my Halloween specials and bring my Thanksgiving specials to the forefront. The Mouse on the Mayflower

My favorite is 1968’s The Mouse on the Mayflower. The Mouse on the Mayflower was a staple of my Thanksgiving viewing during my elementary school days. I can hardly remember a Thanksgiving where we didn’t watch that particular Rankin-Bass special during class. It’s stuck with me all these years. Rankin-Bass owns a good portion of the holiday special landscape in my head, but The Mouse on the Mayflower is special to me. I am most taken by the narration and songs performed by Tennessee Ernie Ford.

There’s something comforting to me about the special. It hearkens back to a time when things were simpler. Thanksgiving meant good food, cartoon specials, a few days off from school, and playing with my cousins after the feast.

Unfortunately, I think The Mouse on the Mayflower has gone by the wayside in recent memory.  I’ve not seen it on the air since the 90s and it has never seen a DVD release. According to Wikipedia, the last VHS release of the film was by Sony Wonder and Golden Books Family Entertainment in 1998. I have a copy of the VHS, which I found by pure accident in a free bin outside one of my favorite used book/movie stores. Fortunately for us, we have YouTube.

[Via] Kevin Burns

Do you remember The Mouse on the Mayflower? What is your favorite part? Do you have another Thanksgiving special that’s been forgotten? However you celebrate, I hope your Thanksgiving is full of nostalgia and good food.

(I have to chime in here and admit that the very first time I watched this special was at school as well. On actual film in fact! -Vic)

Dragon's Blood

CBS Storybreak: Dragon’s Blood (1985)

Dragon’s Blood is a 1985 animated movie or episode of the CBS Storybreak.
cbs-storybreak

Which was a Saturday morning anthology series presenting animated adaptations of children stories. Debuting on March 30, 1985 and lasting until 1987 the series was hosted by Bob Keeshan – Captain Kangaroo himself!
bob-keeshan-captain-kangaroo

Besides Dragon’s Blood other stories that were adapted included How to Eat Fried Worms, and Chocolate Fever. To name just a few of course. I must be completely honest and admit that I didn’t watch CBS Storybreak on a regular basis. While I certainly can’t remember exactly what was was taking my valuable viewing time I do know it was a rare occasion that I switched to the anthology series.

However I did see Dragon’s Blood when it aired – possibly there was a rerun of Kidd Video or something? Whatever the reason, I watched it and quite enjoyed it. Dragon’s Blood was adapted from the novel by Jane Hyatt Yolen. Part of the Pit Dragon Trilogy of books in fact. The story took some liberties it would seem with the source material. So much so that is has been said that Yolen remarked “it looked as if someone had waved the book in the direction of the camera and done little else.”

While that may be the case I have to argue that while not having had the pleasure of reading the books it still holds up. Entertaining and an incredible score to say the least. The story concerns a young slave named Jakkin. Who is a slave or a Bonder, who takes care of the mighty dragons used in pit-fighting events. The young man harbors a dream of stealing a dragon egg before they hatch in the hopes of training it, earning enough coin to pay his bond. To become a free man.

Fate it would seem agrees with that plan as an unhatched egg comes into his possession. Naming it Heart’s Blood the two form a friendship…but can they overcome the odds and win in the arena?
Dragon's Blood

Find out for yourself as you watch Dragon’s Blood!


By the way, there are some wonderful vintage commercials included in the video below. Such asRainbow Brite, Pop-Tarts, and My Little Pony!

[Via] Adrian Forte