What was a Saturday morning like on CBS during the 1966-67 season? Pretty sensational. Using the above comic book ad as a guide, let's see if we can't recreate it show by show.
9:00 am - Network cartoons started an hour later than they did in the seventies. Your local affiliate probably showed a low-budget Christian ventriloquist program prior to the first good show of the day. Nine o'clock signaled time for a gem from the Terrytoons company - The Mighty Heroes. The format consisted of a Mighty Heroes story told in two parts with a Mighty Mouse cartoon from the 1940s or early 50s shown in between. The Mighty Heroes only lasted twenty episodes but it was pretty creative and, of course, was directed by the soon-to-be-legendary Ralph Bakshi. I used to own a couple episodes on a tape that I purchased in a Woolco bargain bin. After a couple viewings it refused to rewind. This episode is the Plastic Blaster. The theme song moves and the pace of the show is so fast it makes the animation feel a lot more fluid than it is.
That was certainly Paul Frees' prolific voice boasting at the end. Now the Mighty Mouse short, this one titled Beauty on the Beach originally released theatrically in 1950.
9:30 - Underdog - A great double bill with The Mighty Heroes featuring more over-the-top cartoony superhero action! Both these shows were a nice antidote to the overly-serious superhero fodder that will be airing later today. The voice of Underdog was done by Marlon Brando's best friend, the nerdy Wally Cox. Cox was a hilarious stand-up comedian who made a mark in 1949 when he appeared on the popular radio program Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts. His stand-up persona was similar to Woody Allen's. Cox was known best as Mister Peepers and as a regular on Hollywood Squares. Total Television animated Underdog, the same company responsible for Tennessee Tuxedo and King Leonardo. The show consisted of an Underdog short, a segment with the Go-Go Gophers, and a short featuring a character named Klondike Kat.
Oh, time for a break. We'll be right back!
Time for this week's Go-Go Gophers segment!
Klondike Kat - Jay Ward Studios should have sued Total Television for that blatant Dudley Do-Right rip-off! He even has the same voice!
10:00 - Frankenstein Jr. and The Impossibles - Perhaps my favorite Hanna-Barbera show. I've posted it before but it's so great!!!
10:30 - Space Ghost and Dino-Boy - The popularity of this Alex Toth designed character spawned all the other Hanna-Barbera adventure type shows that would be rapidly thrown together over the course of the next year. Gary Owens did the voice of our hero.
Now why is Space Ghost narrating the Dino Boy segment? Shouldn't he be fighting evil nstead of telling us stories?
11:00 - It's the first Filmation production of the day, heck, it's one of the first Filmation productions ever made! The New Adventures of Superman. According to Earl Kress this series will be hitting DVD on June 26th! The Filmation Batman cartoon should follow suit shortly thereafter! Fantastic!
We'll Be Right Back!
11:30 - The Lone Ranger - Filmation put out this interpretation of the masked man. Each episode consisted of three separate shorts, the second one a solo cartoon featuring Tonto only (as you will see).
12:00 pm - The Road Runner Show - the theme song remains the most memorable aspect of this latter-day rehash of Wile E. Coyotoe and Road Runner's exploits. It ran for two seasons on CBS starting this year before moving to ABC for a spell.
I'm cheating a bit. This advertisement wouldn't have played on Saturday morning, and even if it did it wouldn't be for another year and a half:
12:30 - The Beagles - another cartoon from the Total Television crew who brought us the earlier Underdog. This one was short lived, was narrated by Kenny Delmar of the old Fred Allen Show and I don't have a clip. Strike one!
1:00 - Tom & Jerry - this incarnation of the cat and mouse adversaries was packaged in a similar way to The Mighty Heroes/Mighty Mouse show that started off the day. Two classic Tom & Jerry shorts and one other random MGM classic from the thirties, forties, or fifties were released with new Tom & Jerry animation introducing them. The very tail end of it can be viewed here and here's a classic short you may have seen on a given episode. The Zoot Cat, originally released theatrically in 1944.
That's all the cartoons CBS has to offer on this Saturday morning 1966-67. Sports are coming on next - let's get the hell out of here!