Pole Position

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CBS (ended 1985)

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Pole Position Fan Reviews (3)

6.6
out of 10
Average
37 votes
  • OK, but a bit repetitive.

    8.5
    Now, here's a short-lived cartoon that has a cult following to this day. Pole Position! I'd like to thank my older brother for getting me the DVD when it came out!



    Named after the Namco arcade racing game, Pole Position is an animated television series all about a family of three siblings called the Darretts, who, after their parents disappear in an unexplained explosion during a stunt race, run a stunt-driving show as well as work for a secret government run by their uncle Zachary Darrett. With their sentient automobiles Roadie and Wheels, and their squeaky pet Kuma, teenagers Dan and Tess, and their younger sister Daisy, travel all over the United States of America catching bad guys and solving mysteries about ancient artifacts.



    Now, the show was pretty much cool whenever the Darretts chased after the bad guys in their cars. Unfortunately, there wasn't that much of a plot, the formula for all the Pole Position season one episodes just went basically like this:

    Darrett siblings drive their truck and/or do a stunt show. . Zachary radios in and briefs the Darrett siblings about their mission to either protect an ancient artifact or an important person, whether it be a human or an animal, from a random bad guy. shows off some of his special acrobatic tricks, as Daisy looks on. Darrett siblings investigate the scene of the crime. and/or Kuma get kidnapped by the bad guy, then get later rescued. goes out of his way to be a hero, almost killing himself in the process, only to be saved by either Roadie or Tess. Darrett siblings, riding Roadie and Wheels, chase after and catch the bad guy in a high-speed chase. Zach explains the whole story behind the artifact/person, solving the mystery. does something funny, causing the Darrett siblings to laugh. next episode.



    See what I mean? Now, according to co-story editor Michael Reaves, the original plot for Pole Position was to have the Darrett siblings travel around the world, looking for clues about their parents' past as spies. But however, the deal fell through somehow. Now, considering how the show has a thing for surprise twists (such as finding out in "Shadow of a Trout" that Dr. Zachary is wheelchair-bound), it's possible that the Darrett parents are still alive.



    And now, my final thoughts:



    Since Inspector Gadget has made a comeback with his 2015 CGI cartoon, I would love to see the same treatment given to COPS, Pole Position, and MASK.



    If a new Pole Position cartoon ever gets made, it should involve the Darrett siblings travelling all over the world, looking for clues to finding their parents, and here's the many world cities the Darretts would visit: Paris, Toyko, Moscow, Hong Kong, Amsterdam, Hungary, London, Turkey, and so many more! The new Pole Position cartoon could also involve the Darretts actually fighting bad guys with their fists and feet, just like Speed Racer. Also, here's who the voicecast should be:



    Bumper Robinson as Dan Darrett (just in case David Coburn isn't available)

    Kath Soucie as Tess Darrett (since Lisa Lindgren died from cancer in 2005)

    Tara Strong as Daisy Darrett (well, Kaleena Kiff is nowaways a director and a mom)

    Jack Angel as Uncle Zachary Darrett (last time I checked, Jack's still doing voice-acting, so he'll probably love to reprise his role)

    David Kaye as Roadie (I know Daryl Hickman is still alive, but he's probably retired by now)

    Kevin Michael Richardson as Wheels (due to Mel Franklin passing away in 1995)

    Frank Welker as Kuma (how can you go wrong with the Man of a Thousand Animal Voices? Besides, Marilyn Schreffler's been dead for 20 years)



    So there you have it, my thoughts on Pole Position. This is Roy Stantz, over and out.
  • Use formula Racers, Not formulaic Writing.

    8.0
    I did and still do enjoy this show, enough to animate a short "Where are they now?" tribute to the characters (still in concept art stage).

    I even put the intro on a Cartoon Intros CD I burned recently, and occasionally play it in the car when on the highway (I recommend trying it at least once... but I'd try to go easy on the gas :) )



    For some reason that intro still gets me pumped to watch the episodes... but just minutes later the excitement fades. For me it has everything to do with the storywriting.



    Because it's a kids' show from the eighties, I guess that the CBS network didnt want teens engaged in violent acts like punching out the bad guys especially in front of their nine year old sister. I get that kind of thing.



    Another reviewer up there mentioned that Michael Reeves said the show was to have the kids travel across the world in exotic locales- to discover clues that shed light on their parents' disappearance.

    That would've made it more exciting.

    (by the way, Roy_stantz, thanks for the note on Reeves' info. And also, Lisa Lindgren, the voice of Tess, died of cancer in 2005- 5 years after Marilyn Scheffler did. I like your VA cast suggestion. You're right, Kuma and Daisy were kidnapped too much. That gets to be boring really quick).



    The reason I didn't rate it higher is for the complexity of the challenge. There were several episodes (actually most) that suffered either from a McGuffin plot device, bad guys who were too incompetent, or both. There were a few episodes that I found were actually good that are worth watching repeatedly ( including Episodes 1 "The Code" , 6 " The Thirty One Cent Mystery" , 13 "The Trouble With Kuma" ), with the rest being fair or just plain boring.



    So, I welcome Pole Position back.

    Just make better premises, or in this show's case, stick To the original premises of the show.
  • 80's saturday mornings

    5.2
    they only made about a dozen episodes of this show. but they replayed them over and over throughout the 80's. it was a pretty cool show the first year. but the same thing over and over, it got old. i do not remember the premise of this show, i just remember the two cars.
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