Friday, April 9, 2010

Wacky Fun.


Pictures by jane_sanders

I used to love the old Saturday morning cartoon Wacky Races. You would think that week after week of watching cars race each other would get old after a while, but it never did. First of all you had all the amazing teams (including the cool cars.) The purple menace of Dick Dastardly and Muttley in the Mean Machine. There’s the elegant beauty of Penelope Pitstop in her pink Compact Pussycat. Or the inventive Professor Pat Pending in his Convert-a-car.

You can’t forget the rest of a great cast; The Slag Brothers in the Bouldermobile, The Ant Hill Mob in the Bulletproof Bomb, The Gruesome Twosome in the Creepy Coupe, Peter Perfect in the Turbo Terrific, Lazy Luke and Blubber Bear in the Arkansas Chuggabug, Red Max in the Crimson Haybailer, Sergeant Blast and Private Meekly in the Army Surplus Special, and Rufus Ruffcut and Sawtooth in the Buzzwagon.

Re-watching this now as an adult I enjoy it just as much as before. I love the silly but inventive ways that the teams trick, cheat, and speed their way to the finish line. You never knew who would have a sneaky trick up their sleeve (except for Dick Dastardly – the name says it all.) Some of the special features were fun and clever, like Dragon Power in the Creepy Coupe, or the Ant Hill mob shooting out the tires of their opponent.

Week after week the cars raced across mountains, deserts, through cities and around various “shortcuts’ other drivers added to the course. There were land mines from Sergeant Blast, cars sawed in half by Rufus Ruffcut, and scientist Pat Pending could transform his car into boat or plane as needed.

Life-size working versions of these cartoon cars were made for the UK’s Goodwood Festival of Speed every year until 2008. They have now completed the entire set. How cool is that? Head down nostalgia lane and purchase yourself a copy of this fun TV show on DVD. You’ll be glad you did.

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