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
-The Real Ghostbusters
-Garfield and Friends
-The New Adventures of Mighty Mouse
-Jim Henson’s Muppet Babies
-Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends
-Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
-Voltron: Defender of the Universe
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.