Spiral Zone

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(ended 1987)

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Gladrius

User Score: 93

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  • Season 1 Episode 11: Duel in Paradise

  • One of the maces on Duchess Dire's Sledgehammer vehicle is blown off in the initial battle, but she has both still attached a short time later.

  • Season 1 Episode 2: King of the Skies

  • A Show that Got Perverted
    Spiral Zone doesn't have a very good relationship with its creator J. Michel Straczynski, a brilliant writer known best for his work in Babilon 5.

    He wrote the pilot for Spiral Zone and the series bible, but then took his name off and walked away from the show because of creative differences with the producers.

    This is what he said about the series:

    "One syndicated show that got so perverted by the producers, in a bad way, that I took my name off the series."

    The exact nature of the creative conflict during the development of the show is not known. Some believe Straczynski wanted to make a continuous story arc as with Babylon 5, which would have been a big no-no in 80s cartoon, since the TV stations like being able to shuffle the episode order around to whatever suits them.

    It could also have been Tonka Toys' constant interference with the scripts, trying to adjust the story to its comercial interests. Althought this was part of the game, maybe it had become too much to bear.

    What is certain is that Straczynski wasn't at all happy with what was going on. When he took his name from the series, he replaced it with a pseudonym Fettes Grey made up of the names of two grave robbers from a well known piece of fiction.

  • Season 1 Episode 1: Holographic Zone Battle

  • This is not exactly a goof, it is more like the behind the scenes of Spiral Zone.


    A Toy Story

    "The production was so corrupt that the toy company activly edited scripts, making changes in action and dialogue to purposely feature an aspect of a certain toy they wanted to sell." That is how Charles Zembillas describes the production of Spiral Zone in the article The Second Golden Age.

    As many other animated series from the 80s, Spiral Zone was designed to sell toys. It was the time of the toy-based cartoons such as transformers, G.I Joe and their insurmountable armies of action figures.

    The problem for Spiral Zone was that it arrived too late to seize the bonanza. Shelves of toy retailers had already filled up and people figured out what was going on. Tonka Toys, which funded the production of the 65 episodes of Spiral Zone, took a massive financial beating, though made a pretty good show.

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