Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Forgotten Toons: Flash Gordon (1979)

Who doesn't love Flash Gordon?  Seriously, I'm asking you.  Give me a good reason why you shouldn't!  Flash is a big, tough American man who goes to Planet Mongo and kicks ass.  What's not to like?

The show was made by Filmation and was designed to emulate the serial nature of the series.  Of course, it saves on money to replay the endings at the beginning of every episode & play them again as stingers.  That's simple economics, boys and girls.

As a Filmation show, the series used rotoscoping a lot and it generally looks quite good.  Some of the shots of ships flying about look on par with any animation done before CG rendering became commonplace.  The story is pretty much the same- Flash goes to Mongo, fights aliens and saves the day.  It introduces a lot more locations and characters that served as places to fear or look forward to.  He also has a cadre of allies that you know, including Prince Barin (it always sounds like he has two titles), Thun the Lion Man and the King of the Hawkmen.

It's a good show, but does not try to be much more than an animated series.  There is a lack of epic scale here, but it's fun.

Next up, a look at the 'new' adventures of an animated icon from the 1980s.  He forgoes the past and the future!  Stay tuned...

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