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Reference Library: Beatles Cartoons

From: (Kevin G. McGuire)
Subject: Beatle Cartoon Series information
Date: 17 Aug 1995 04:37:01 GMT

from the Encyclopedia Of Animated Cartoons by Jeff Lenburg:

Produced in 1965, the series came about through the efforts of producer Al Brodax at King Features after he was approached by an ABC executive with the idea of producing a Beatles cartoon. Famous toymaker A.C. Gilmer, who envisioned a merchandising goldmine, financed the series.

Premiering on ABC on Saturday, September 25, 1965, at 10:30am, the show was an instant ratings hit. It racked up a 13 score (or 52 share), then unheard of in daytime television. Each half-hour show consisted of two sing-a-longs, emceed by the Beatles. (Lyrics were flashed on the screen so viewers could join in.) The first episodes aired were "I Want To Hold Your Hand" and "A Hard Day's Night."

Besides two weekly cartoons, the Beatles cartoon show was famous for its clever bridges between episodes and commercials. These included dry, comic vignettes, such as Ringo buying a newspaper from a street vendor and getting hit by a car, only to complain afterwards, "There's not a word in here about me accident!"

The voices of the Beatles' cartoon lookalikes were supplied by two voice actors, Paul Frees(John and George) and Lance Percival (Paul and Ringo). Animation was sent overseas(TVC of London, which produced the Beatles cult feature, The Yellow Submarine, and Astransa, and Australian company, did the bulk of the animation) and scripts were turned out rather easily since episodes were based on popular Beatles songs.

"It took about four weeks to animate each film and I enjoyed it immensely," recalled Chris Cuddington, a series animator. "The characters were easy to draw, and the stories were simple and uncomplicated."

Following the first season's success, Brodax considered producing four Beatles prime-time animated specials. But plans to produce them and several other musical-based cartoon series--animated versions of Herman's Hermits and Freddie and the Dreamers--never fully materialized.

The Beatles remained on ABC for three more years, the final two seasons being reruns of original cartoons. The series lost ground during its second season after it was slated opposite CBS' "Space Ghost," part of a powerful Saturday morning lineup which included "Frankenstein Jr. and the Impossibles," "Mighty Mouse" and the "Mighty Heroes."

In the fall of 1968, the series was moved to Sunday mornings where it remained until its final broadcast in 1969.

A King Features Production. Color. Half-hour. September 25, 1965- September 7, 1969. Syndicated.

It's interesting that in addition to performing Jameson Swain's favorite Beatle song, "Dizzy Miss Lizzy," the cartoon also featured "Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand!"


More info from: (Kevin G. McGuire)
Organization: University of Illinois at Urbana
Date: 7 Oct 1995 22:44:04 GMT

Each half hour show featured two songs. Here is a list of all the shows:

A Hard Day's Night & I Want To Hold Your Hand 
Do You Want To Know A Secret & If I Fell 
Please Mr. Postman & Devil In Her Heart
Not A Second Time & Slow Down
Baby's In Black & Misery
You've Really Got A Hold On Me & Chains
I'll Get You & Honey Don't
Any Time At All & Twist And Shout
Little Child & I'll Be Back
Long Tall Sally & I'll Cry Instead
I'll Follow The Sun & When I Get Home
Everybody's Trying To Be My Baby & I Should Have Known Better
I Wanna Be Your Man & I'm A Loser
Don't Bother Me & No Reply
I'm Happy Just To Dance With You & Mr. Moonlight
Can't Buy Me Love & It Won't Be Long
Anna(Go To Him) & I Don't Want To Spoil The Party
Matchbox & Thank You Girl
From Me To You & Boys
Dizzy Miss Lizzy & I Saw Her Standing There 
What You're Doing & Money
Komm Gib Mir Deine Hand & She Loves You
Bad Boy & Tell Me Why
I Feel Fine & Hold Me Tight
Please Please Me & There's A Place
Roll Over Beethoven & Rock And Roll Music 
Eight Days A Week & I'm Looking Through You 
Help! & We Can Work It Out
I'm Down & Run For Your Life
Drive My Car & Tell Me What You See
I Call Your Name & The Word
All My Loving & Day Tripper
Nowhere Man & Paperback Writer
Penny Lane & Strawberry Fields
And Your Bird Can Sing & Got To Get You Into My Life 
Good Day Sunshine & Ticket To Ride
Taxman & Eleanor Rigby
Tomorrow Never Knows & I've Just Seen A Face 
Wait & I'm Only Sleeping

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