Category Archives: Cartoons

Totally Awesome: The Greatest Cartoons of The Eighties

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Totally Awesome! The Greatest Cartoons of the Eighties ($45) is the ultimate guide to 80s cartoon nostalgia, featuring the art, toys, and inside story behind icons like He-Man, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, G.I. Joe, and the Thundercats.

It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. But for a generation of fans, it was truly, truly the most outrageous of times. The last decade for both a thriving schedule of network Saturday morning cartoons and a full complement of weekday syndicated programming, the 1980s saw a television animation boom like no era before or since.

The offerings ran the gamut from the blatantly commercial (He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, created after restrictions on children’s broadcasting were altered to allow programming based directly on merchandise) to the surprisingly unmarketable (Jem, canceled despite its popularity due to its failure to sell fashion dolls) to the utterly inexplicable (The New Adventures of Mighty Mouse, helmed by underground animation legend Ralph Bakshi and future Ren and Stimpy creator John Kricfalusi).

Andrew Farago, author of The Looney Tunes Treasury and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Ultimate Visual History, is the curator of San Francisco’s Cartoon Art Museum. As a respected cartoon historian and a child of the eighties himself, he provides an inside look at the history of the most popular cartoons of the eighties, as told by the writers, animators, voice actors, and other creative talents who brought life to some of the most enduring animation of the decade, along with some of the era’s forgotten classics (and not-so-classics).

Farago and a host of animation legends will provide an in-depth look at the most popular cartoons of the 1980s, from the first pitch meeting to the final episode. Featured cartoons will include:

-He-Man and the Masters of the Universe
-G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero
-Dungeons & Dragons
-Transformers
-Jem
-The Real Ghostbusters
-Garfield and Friends
-The New Adventures of Mighty Mouse
-Jim Henson’s Muppet Babies
-Disney’s DuckTales
-Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends
-Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
-Thundercats
-Robotech
-M.A.S.K.
-Voltron: Defender of the Universe
– Superman

Sidebars will explore trends in eighties animation, including adventures in licensing, celebrity-driven programs, second-generation characters, justly forgotten shows, and other totally radical cartoons! The book will be illustrated with the very best art from these iconic cartoons, including rare and never-before-seen sketches, cels, and storyboards.

The 160 page hardcover book will be released on October 18, 2016.

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New DuckTales Series Debuts First Image From DisneyXD

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Last year, Disney announced an all-new version of the Emmy Award-winning animated series DuckTales had been ordered for launch on DisneyXD channels around the world in 2017. Now Disney Television Animation has revealed the first image from new DuckTales series.

The new DuckTales series’ adventures will once again take viewers along as Scrooge McDuck, his curious and mischief-making grandnephews—Huey, Dewey, and Louie—and the optimistic-yet-temperamental Donald Duck embark on high-flying adventures worldwide. Other beloved characters slated to be in the new stories are Duckworth, Gyro Gearloose, Launchpad McQuack, Flintheart Glomgold, Magica DeSpell & Poe, Ma Beagle and the Beagle Boys (Burger Beagle, Bouncer Beagle), Mrs. Beakley, and Webbigail Vanderquack.

Marc Buhaj, Senior Vice President, Programming, and General Manager, DisneyXD, said, “DuckTales has a special place in Disney’s TV animation history, it drew its inspiration from Disney Legend Carl Barks’ comic books and through its storytelling and artistic showmanship, set an enduring standard for animated entertainment that connects with both kids and adults. Our new series will bring that same energy and adventurous spirit to a new generation.”

A generation’s seminal cartoon, “DuckTales” led the daily syndicated cartoon block “The Disney Afternoon” with 100 episodes produced from 1987–‘90. An animated theatrical film, DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp, premiered in 1990.

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DC Entertainment Announces New Slate of Hanna-Barbera Titles

The classic Hanna-Barbera characters are back in a big way. As revealed by Entertainment Weekly, DC will launch a new line of comics dedicated to the classic characters, featuring titles like “Scooby Apocalypse,” “Future Quest,” “Wacky Racers,” “The Flintstones,” and possibly others. The creators involved include Amanda Conner (“The Flintstones”), “Mad Max: Fury Road” designer Mark Sexton (“Wacky Raceland”), Jeff Parker, Jim Lee and Howard Porter.

DC co-publisher Dan DiDio told EW that he “was always a fan of the old Hanna-Barbera characters, having grown up on them. I think what you find right now is there’s so much material on pop culture, and these characters resonate with so much of our fanbase. It was so fun to go out and look at them, but not just bring back versions that existed 40, 50 years ago and really look at it the way of saying, if these characters were created and interpreted today, how would they exist? So we handed off our materials to a number of top creators, and what came back was an exciting look that felt very true to the existence of the characters.”

Details are still forthcoming about the line, including the final lineup of titles and creators involved. As revealed by DiDio on Twitter, the line will include:

– The Flintstones by Amanda Conner and written by Mark Russell
– Wacky Racers by Mark Sexton and Ken Pontac
– Future Quest, starring the Hanna-Barbera action heroes (including Space Ghost and Johnny Quest) by Jeff Parker and Evan “Doc” Shaner
– Scooby Apocalypse from Jim Lee, Keith Giffen and Howard Porter

Lee and DiDio refer to “Scooby Apocalypse” as the “crown jewel” of the line. “I’m a huge Scooby Doo fan, as I think most people are,” said Lee. “I mean, look at these iconic series and they were cultural touchstones for everyone. All my kids know of Scooby Doo from the various cartoons and live action movies, and we’re in a period where you have people my age that are spending their days thinking about cartoon and sci-fi action movies. It’s a multigenerational obsession at this point, and we just thought it would just be really interesting to take the cartoon version of these characters and see where they would be if we took what existed in the very first iteration of the cartoon and moved it into this day and age.”

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Warner Bros. Animation Announces Justice League Action Coming To The Cartoon Network

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Warner Bros. Animation today announced that a new take on DC‘s classic superhero team is headed to Cartoon Network. Justice League Action is the name of the new show.

Said to be a “quarter-hour” animated series, Justice League Action boasts the return of Kevin Conroy as the voice of Batman. Conroy has been voicing Batmen throughout the DC Multiverse since his debut on Batman: The Animated Series.

Justice League Action is officially described as follows:

Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman lead the DC Comics Super Heroes against their most infamous foes in adventures packed with relentless thrills, fun and action. No need to wait for the good stuff to start, each eleven-minute episode jumps in with lightning-paced action and heroics. Whether defending the Earth, facing invaders from space, or battling the bizarre forces of magic, the always-rotating team of Justice League heroes, are up to any challenge.

Justice League Action marks the first DC Comics-based franchise to launch on Cartoon Network since the highly-successful Teen Titans Go!, which in 2015 ranked as a top five animated series among Kids 2-11, 6-11 and all key Boys. Teen Titans Go! also ranks as Cartoon Network’s #1 property for cross-platform video plays and on VOD.

Justice League Action will also deliver an all-star lineup of regular and guest cast voices, including Mark Hamill as Joker, James Woods as Lex Luthor, Diedrich Bader as Booster Gold and many more portraying your favorite DC Comics Super Heroes and Super-Villains. Sam Register (Teen Titans Go!) serves as executive producer with Butch Lukic (Justice League, Batman Beyond), Alan Burnett (Batman: The Animated Series) and Jim Krieg (Green Lantern: The Animated Series) serving as producers.

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Dark Hall Mansion To Release Popeye The Sailor Meets Sinbad The Sailor Prints By Tom Whalen On January 29, 2016

Dark Hall Mansion is so very pleased to finally reveal a project that’s been in development for well over a year, DHM’s officially licensed “Popeye The Sailor Meets Sinbad The Sailor” limited-edition prints by leading contemporary artist, Tom Whalen, and on sale this Friday, January 29th.

Dark Hall Mansion, in partnership with  Warner Bros. Consumer Products, King Features Syndicate and Fleischer Studios will release Tom Whalen’s colorful take on the classic 1936 long-format Fleischer Studios cartoon classic that finds everyone’s favorite sailor matching wits with Bluto (er, Sindbad!) in  Max Fleischer’s singular Popeye Color Special.

DHM chose this very special Popeye short for their first officially licensed Fleischer release as the studio is huge fans of the early groundbreaking Fleischer Studios shorts, and know this 16-minute Popeye special was so well received it was nominated for a 1936 Academy Award for the best short category: Cartoons. In addition, this short is formally recognized by no less than the United States Library of Congress as “culturally significant” and selected for preservation within the National Film Registry, as well as having been recognized as #17 among the Greatest Cartoons of all time by members of the animation field.

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Popeye The Sailor Meets Sinbad The Sailor Standard Edition of 280 = $65

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Popeye The Sailor Meets Sinbad The Sailor Variant Edition of 50 = $100

Dark Hall Manion will also release a Popeye The Sailor Meets Sinbad The Sailor Foil Edition of 10 = $150 (based on the standard Edition colorway and a Popeye The Sailor Meets Sinbad The Sailor Foil Edition of 10 = $150 (based on the variant Edition colorway).

All editions are strictly limited, measure 18″ x 24,” are screen printed, and hand numbered. Popeye The Sailor Meets Sinbad The Sailor limited-edition prints go on sale this Friday January 29th on Dark Hall Mansion’s dedicated store page HERE at 9:30 AM PST!

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Exploring Calvin and Hobbes Exhibition Catalogue

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Enjoy this beautiful companion book to the extensive Exploring Calvin and Hobbes exhibition at the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library. Includes an in-depth, original,and lengthy interview with Bill Watterson.

Exploring Calvin and Hobbes is the catalogue for an exhibition by the same name at the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum at Ohio State University that ran in 2014. The exhibit is Bill Watterson’s personal exploration of how the wonder of Calvin and Hobbes came to be. It includes original art of Calvin and Hobbes, along with Watterson’s original commentary. The show also includes art from cartoons and cartoonists that Watterson has identified as influential in the development of his art, including Peanuts, Pogo, Krazy Kat, Doonesbury, Pat Oliphant, Jim Borgman, Flash Gordon, Bloom County, and Steadman. The book also includes an extensive, original interview with Watterson by Jenny Robb, the exhibition’s curator.

The 160 page paperback will be available everywhere books are sold! You can order your copy HERE for $19.99.

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Clever Popeye Tattoo

Here’s a clever Popeye tattoo inked by Alina Fokina, an artist in Ufa, Russia.

Clever-Popeye-Tattoo

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A New DuckTales Is Coming To Disney XD In 2017

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Whether you grew up on the Disney Afternoon, or you’re just a fan of iconic Disney animation, we think you’ll be excited to learn that an all-new DuckTales, an animated comedy series based on the Emmy Award-winning series treasured by a generation of viewers, has been ordered for launch in 2017 on DisneyXD channels around the world. Set to be produced by Disney Television Animation (DTVA), the new series will again star Disney’s enduringly popular characters: Scrooge McDuck, his grandnephews Huey, Dewey, and Louie, and Donald Duck. The announcement was made today by Marc Buhaj, Senior Vice President, Programming, and General Manager, DisneyXD.

Buhaj said, “DuckTales has a special place in Disney’s TV animation history, it drew its inspiration from Disney Legend Carl Barks’ comic books and through its storytelling and artistic showmanship, set an enduring standard for animated entertainment that connects with both kids and adults. Our new series will bring that same energy and adventurous spirit to a new generation.”

The new series’ adventures will once again take viewers along as Scrooge McDuck, his curious and mischief-making grandnephews—Huey, Dewey, and Louie—and the optimistic-yet-temperamental Donald Duck embark on high-flying adventures worldwide. Other beloved characters slated to be in the new stories are: Duckworth, Gyro Gearloose, Launchpad McQuack, Flintheart Glomgold, Magica DeSpell & Poe, Ma Beagle and the Beagle Boys (Burger Beagle, Bouncer Beagle), Mrs. Beakley, and Webbigail Vanderquack.

A generation’s seminal cartoon, the Emmy Award-winning DuckTales led the daily syndicated cartoon block “The Disney Afternoon” with 100 episodes produced by DTVA from 1987–‘90. An animated theatrical film, DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp, premiered in 1990.

The original DuckTales is currently available on WATCH Disney Channel, an app that allows consumers to watch on tablet, phones, computer, and set top boxes.

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NECA To Release Wave 5 Action Figures Featuring Matt Groening, Lenny Kravitz, Adam West, Stan Lee & Tom Petty

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The National Entertainment Collectibles Association (NECA) in partnership with Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products, announced today the next line-up of celebrities as part of The Simpsons exclusive “25 of the Greatest Guest Stars” program. The fifth installment of talent in this limited-edition boutique collection includes Matt Groening, Lenny Kravitz, Adam West, Stan Lee and Tom Petty. In addition, the fourth wave of celebrity figures and merchandise featuring Buzz Aldrin, Tom Jones, Elvis Costello, Weird Al and Aerosmith is now available at various retailers, including Toys“R”Us stores nationwide and online at Toysrus.com, as well as Hastings.

The limited-edition boutique collection includes a diverse array of products including figures, collectibles and apparel featuring the animated likenesses of 25 of the most celebrated guest stars as they appeared on the show. This is the first time in The Simpsons’ 25-year history that merchandise has been designed around celebrity guest stars like Hugh Hefner, James Brown, Yao Ming, Tom Hanks, Kid Rock, The Who, Britney Spears, Mark Hamill, Lucy Lawless, Penn and Teller, Bret Hart, Stephen King, Leonard Nimoy, R.E.M. and Tony Hawk.

The “25 of the Greatest Guest Stars” program launched in early 2014, with product roll-outs continuing throughout the year. New products will continue to be introduced every two to three months, featuring different groupings of guest stars, with limited quantities available at select retailers worldwide.

For more information about the “25 of the Greatest Guest Stars” program, visit http://thesimpsons.necaonline.com.

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The 40 Best Cartoon Characters of All Time

Paste Magazine thought it would be interesting to celebrate TV cartoon characters, young and old, that they hold dear. The magazine came up with 50 great ones like The Simpsons and Looney Tunes, but also tried to diversify the list. Who made # 1? Find out HERE. Are there any favorite cartoon characters of yours that did not make the cut?


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