43 Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About ’80s Cartoons Series

Would you believe there is a link between Baby Kermit on Muppet Babies and Megatron on Transformers?!

 

1. Phil Hartman voiced Mr. Wilson on Dennis the Menace.

2. Hartman also provided the voice for Dennis’ dad, Henry Mitchell.

3. The Police’s Stewart Copeland wrote and performed the theme song “Trouble Again,” for Star Wars: Droids: The Adventures of R2-D2 and C-3PO.

4. Brad Garrett — who is best known for playing Robert Barone on Everybody Loves Raymondwas the voice of Hulk Hogan on Hulk Hogan’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling.

5. Garrett also provided the voice of the robot-dinosaur Trypticon on Transformers.

Shout! Factory

Warner Bros.

 

6. Transformers were created from two different Japanese toy lines, the Diaclone and Micro Change series. After Hasbro acquired the rights to sell both of them in the U.S. they combined them into one, renamed them Transformers, and created an animated series around it

7. Before he became the Autobot’s leader, Optimus Prime’s name was Orion Pax. The name is a combination of Orion, the giant huntsman in Greek mythology, and “pax,” which is Latin for peace.

8. The name Optimus Prime is a combination of two Latin words: Optimus meaning “best” and Prime, which comes from the word primus, which means “first”.

9. In Japan the Transformers cartoon series was called Fight! Super Robot Life Form Transfomers.

10. In the very first episode of ThunderCats, the ThunderCats are shown on their home planet, Thundera, NAKED.

11. The planet the ThunderCats travel to — when they escape Thundera — is actually Earth, in the future.

12. Earle Hyman — who is best known for playing Grandpa Huxtable on The Cosby Show — was the voice of Panthro.

Sony Pictures Television

Disney-ABC Domestic Television

 

13. The reason that “Real” was added to The Real Ghostbusters was because Filmation (the animation studio behind He-Man) owned the rights to a ’70s TV show by the same name. After the Ghostbusters film was a success, Filmation put it’s own version of an animated series into production.

14. Arsenio Hall voiced Winston Zeddemore for three seasons on The Real Ghostbusters.

15. Muppet Babies was a spin-off of a sequence from The Muppets Take Manhattan.

16. During the second season of Muppet Babies, Jim Henson paired the show with a new live-action series called Little Muppet Monsters — it lasted three episodes.

17. Howie Mandel voiced Baby Animal, Bunsen, and Skeeter for two seasons on Muppet Babies.

18. After Mandel left Muppet Babies, Dave Coulier, who is best known for playing Joey on Full House, took over his voice roles.

19. Coulier also voiced Peter Venkman on The Real Ghostbusters, after the original voice actor left the role.

 

20. The Smurfs cartoon was created after then-NBC president Fred Silverman noticed his daughter was playing with a Smurfs stuffed animal and thought it would be a good idea for an animated series.

21. In The Smurfs’ Christmas Special, the Smurfs kill a villain by singing him to death.

22. Like The Smurfs, The Snorks are also based on a comic.

23. The Jem doll line was created to be a competitor to Barbie, in order to promote the line Hasbro decided to create an animated series.

24. Jem’s original name was going to be “M” — which was meant to imply Music, Magic, and Mystique.

25. Jem’s mother died in a plane crash — and they showed the wreckage of it.

26. There were 151 different songs in the 65 episodes of Jem.

27. The show also contained 187 music videos.

28. One Jem song, “Who Is Kissing,” strongly suggests that Jem is having sex with Rio. In the lyrics she wonders whether her cheater boyfriend, Rio, is “making love to a fantasy.”

29. Unlike most cartoon series, Jem had an actual series finale in which the Holograms and the Misfits declare a truce.

Focus Filmes

Focus Filmes

 

30. The He-Man toy line was created before there was ever a cartoon series.

31. The idea to create the He-Man toy line came from Mattel’s decision to pass on buying the rights to create the Star Wars toy line in 1976.

32. She-Ra made her debut in the 1985 animated movie The Secret of the Sword. The film was later cut up into sections and served as the first five episodes of She-Ra: Princess of Power.

33. Disney’s The Wuzzles and Gummi Bears premiered on the same day, but on different networks. The Wuzzles aired on CBS, while Gummi Bears aired on ABC.

34. With only 13 episodes produced, The Wuzzels is the shortest running animated series Disney ever created to date.

Walt Disney Television

 

35. Rainbow Brite’s real name is Wisp and she is an orphan.

36. Unlike the live-action serious, ALF (which was an acronym for Alien Life Form) is actually given a real name, Gordon Shumway, in the spin-off cartoon series.

37. Chris Columbus, who is best known as the director of Home Alone and Mrs. Doubtfire, created Galaxy High.

38. The music and a theme song featured on Galaxy High were composed and performed by Eagles member Don Felder (the guy co-wrote “Hotel California”!)

39. DuckTales’ villain Ma Beagle is based on a real person. She is modeled after Ma Barker of the Barker-Karpis gang.

40. Mark Mueller, the guy who wrote the DuckTales theme song, also wrote the Chip ‘n’ Dale Rescue Rangers theme song and Jennifer Paige’s 1998 one-hit-wonder, “Crush.”

41. Voice actor Frank Welker, who is best known as the voice of Fred Jones in every Scooby-Doo series incarnation, also voiced Hefty Smurf on The Smurfs, Baby Kermit on Muppet Babies, Megatron on Transformers, and, Slimer and Ray Stantz on The Real Ghostbusters.

42. James Avery, who is best known for playing Uncle Phil on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, was the voice of Shredder on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

43. Avery also did voice work on The Real Ghostbusters and Hulk Hogan’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling.

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