Saturday, November 29, 2008

Can't Believe Anyone Else Ever Watched This...

Speaking of BAD 80s-90s cartoons. My free time has been invaded by Cracked a fantastically funny website of lists. One of the lists I was reading was "The 10 Most Disastrous Saturday Morning Cartoon Adaptations". I'm not so much shocked to find this on the list as I am to find that a) it is not #1, b) anyone other than me and my brother ever even saw this:


"Based On:
The most famous athletes in each of the three major sports: Michael Jordan (Basketball) and Bo Jackson (Football, Baseball). Also, a white guy named Wayne who plays something called hockey.

Sucked Because:
It squandered a pretty decent premise: famous athletes using their almost superhero-like athletic abilities to fight crime. Unfortunately, it's unclear if the the shows creators even knew who the three athletes were, or if they'd ever watched sports before.

Gretzky' character spends most of his time talking about how hungry he is, and acting like a general retard. He is mostly used as the outfit' comic relief, because when it comes to using sports to fight crime, the guy who glides around with blades on his feet, deftly wielding a sword-like stick is only good for a few chuckles. Meanwhile, Bo Jackson' character was the Incredible Hulk with a fade, an angry grunting behemoth who rumbled around like a bulldozer, ignoring the fact that Jackson was one of the fastest, most graceful athletes in professional sports.

But the biggest failure is the show's inexplicable treatment of the biggest star of the three: Michael Jordan. The obvious move would have been to turn him into a cross between Stretch Armstrong and a Gummy Bear, capable of using his leaping ability and lanky finesse to fuck up some super villains. Instead, Jordan' character fights crime using hi-tech gizmos some random Yiddish-speaking lady gives him. It didn't even matter that he was Michael Jordan! Kurt Rambis could have been awesome with all the weapons and gadgets that Jewish lady was always giving MJ. Instead of focusing on his other-worldly athleticism, the show made the greatest athlete in the world into a cross between The Hebrew Hammer and Data from Goonies.

Evidence from the Title Sequence:
The coolest moments in the intro are the highlights of Jackson and Jordan from the real world. While cartoon Bo uses a tree to kill some guy driving a tractor, it' nothing compared to his real world gravity-defying wall run. And Jordan flying through the air dunking on Lakers is way cooler than his cartoon highlight, in which he needs rocket-shoes to save a child from a burning building. Rocket shoes? Really? If Carl Lewis was one of the ProStars they probably would have given him a Segway."

I would like to point out two things that I don't remember from watching the cartoon that the opening sequence has reminded me of:

1) They slept in lockers
2) The 80s-90s obligatory "save the environment in the least peaceful way imaginable" episode.

1 comment:

Joe said...

That's a funny website. I watched a lot of those shows, including Pro Stars. Hammerman also gets a mention. "While we can't say whether it contributed to his downfall, it certainly made it more difficult to take seriously his attempt to reinvent himself as a gangsta rapper. How do you record a song about being hard core when it was already a matter of public record that your powers stemmed from a pair of sentient-speaking magical dancing shoes?"