Wow this show made Yogi into an idiot. Like extremely idiot. Yogi is supposed to be an adult. If Yogis a teen, why it's in the 90s? Yogi can't be a teen again. Shouldn't be in 40s or 50s or something? Yogi is a hipster gangster wannabe. He's too cool to be a gangster wannabe. I also hate the Yogi Bear live action too. RIP Yogi Bear 1960s-90s
This show is supposed to be an incarnate of Yogi...and boy is it bad.
First off, Yogi, Huck, Boo-Boo, Cindi, and Snagglepuss are teens. The other characters that Hanna-Barbera made are not. And all the cameos they have such as Augie Doggie and Doggie Daddy among others...is that they put Loopy de Loop in the cartoon after a 25-year absence in cartoons. And they put him in this cartoon?! Why couldn't they let Loopy be part of Yogi's group of friends?!
And Jellystone Mall? They used the forest as Jellystone Mall? (Okay, that was off-topic) but what I'm saying is that the cameos deserve better and Loopy, a French-Canadian, deserved better!
While I don't believe this show is going to see a sudden jump in popularity anytime soon, I am writing this review for informational purposes.
I am sure that you remember that during the 1980s, due to the fact Walt Disney died in 1966 and the numerous lousy 1970s cartoons (with Fat Albert and Scooby-Doo as the only 1970s cartoons with lasting value), the animation industry was in a slump. One type of cartoon at the time was the series based on toys. Another type, which started with the mega-successful 'Jim Henson's Muppet Babies', introduced 'kids' versions of old cartoon characters. This, of course, spawned many imitators (Hanna-Barbera in particular), when they started making shows like 'The Flintstones Kids' (1985), 'A Pup Named Scooby-Doo' (1988) and 'The Tom and Jerry Kids Show' (1990). The only Muppet Babies wannabe show I remember being good was Warner Brothers and Steven Spielberg's 'Tiny Toon Adventures' (and to tell the truth, Tiny Toons wasn't trying to be like Muppet Babies at all).
Likely an attempt by Hanna-Barbera to duplicate the success of Tiny Toon Adventures, they made 'Yo, Yogi!' for NBC back in 1991. It cast Yogi Bear as a teenager, who would hang out with Boo Boo, Cindy Bear, Snagglepuss and Huckleberry Hound in Jellystone Mall. They would hang out, rap, fight crime (strange that Yogi would be a crimefighter as a teenager, but would throw that all out the window and steal picnic baskets as an adult). We also saw other Hanna-Barbera characters like Ranger Smith (as a security guard), Dick Disastedly and Muttley (as a pair of bikers) and Secret Squirrel (as a baby).
What I remember best about the show is the '3-D' gimmick they made for it. Likely a bid to get the show some better ratings (my brother, sister, friends and myself only watched it because it came on before 'Captain N and the Adventures of Super Mario World'), I remember seeing a Rice Krispies commerical were Yogi would announce to the viewers that in the marked boxes, you would find a pair of 3-D glasses. When you had them on while the show was in play, there would be at least one sequence were Yogi would throw his hat up and spin it; and for the next few minutes, you would see 3-D effects through the glasses.
Yogi and his friends might have jumped off-screen, but the show's ratings were still dead (I guess all the marketing muscle in the world can't con people into watching a bad cartoon), so the show was cancelled a few months later. Yogi and teen friends would reappear as a skit on 'The Fun-tastic World of Hanna-Barbera', but for now, teen Yogi simply appears to be 'out of sight, out of mind'. It wasn't until 1999 when Yogi would return to the animation world, through the eyes of John Kricfalusi and Spumco.
I would be misleading you if I told you the 1990s gave us nothing but classic cartoons; the '90s, like the other decades before, had its share of forgettable junk--it included 'WishKid' (1991), 'Wild West C.O.W. Boys of Moo-Mesa' (1992), 'Bruno the Kid' (1996) and of course, 'Yo, Yogi!' (1991).--This line was altered from Jerry Beck's 'Animation Art: From pencil to pixel; a history of cartoon, anime and CGI' book.
Now, for my final thought...
"Okay, maybe my dad did steal Itchy, but so what? Animation is built on plagiarism! If it weren't for someone plagiarizing the Honeymooners, we wouldn't have the Flintstones! If someone hadn't ripped off Sgt. Bilko, they'd be no Top Cat! Huckleberry Hound, Chief Wiggum, Yogi Bear? Hah! Andy Griffith, Edward G. Robinson, Art Carney! Your honor, you take away our right to steal ideas, where are they gonna come from? Her?" [points at Marge]
"Uh... Hmm... How about... Ghostmutt?"
--borrowed from the Simpsons episode, 'The Day the Violence Died'
In da mid- to late 1980s, Hanna-Barbera noticed a spike in popularity of old "Yogi Bear" reruns with da grade school demographic. They figured it was just because Nickelodeon started airing them right when kids got home from school to catch da tail end of it in da last year or two before they got a Nintendo. And they were right, for da most part, but what they didn't assume was dat we were okay with dat. Yogi was on da TV, and it was perfectly fine, but since cartoon producers think all kids are trendy w****s who couldn't possibly enjoy a show from da '60s for more than a year without silently wishing dat everyone started wearing Air Jordans and enjoying credit cards, they decided to freshen things up a bit. Thus, "Yo, Yogi!" was born, featuring da ever-scheming, hyperintelligent bear and his friends devolved into teenagers with giant bobble heads and dressed in neon-colored designer clothes and sneakers. So in retrospect, the whole thing looks like some furries cosplaying as da cast of da Vanilla Ice movie, "Cool As Ice." Da new series was set in Jellystone MALL to better relate to preteen America, by which I mean da 0.3% of preteen American who happened to reside in Beverly Hills, California, and went directly to da mall after school instead of ever stepping foot in their own house, because God forbid dat da kids at school find out dat you have parents. Every mall, even cool hangin' out fantasy malls where teenagers never leave except for school and I guess soccer practice, needs a security figure, to remind us dat life needs adults to be BORING and SQUARE and uphold order. At Jellystone Mall, dat man is Officer John Smith, an upgrade to da Pocahontas-romancing park ranger we all know, love, and get confused with emo George Jetson when he isn't wearing a hat.
Officer Smith, like all mall security guards, is on da lowest rung of da police chain of command. He wants to deny dat his life is a joke, but it's kind of hard when da Lost and Found department, by which Yogi Bear and his buddies are all employed, decides to also take care of all da mystery-solving and crime-fighting that needs to be done on a normal day at every suburban mall in America. That's da other catch: Smith's function as disciplinarian is all but lost on Yogi, as they now work on da same side of da law. In spirit, at least. Occasionally da bear will remember dat he's dressed like Zack Morris and appropriately get a fur-brained scheme, and we'll be treated to da familiar outcry of "Yogiiiiii!", but other than dat, Officer Smith really only exists so that little skateboarding Boo-boo in a backwards cap and giant, mismatched bow tie can have a speaking part and chime in once or twice about what he thinks Smith would and would not like. I know it's supposed to be Boo-boo, but do you remember any kids in middle school who could wear a giant orange bow tie in public and not get stuffed into da nearest locker or toilet?
Who cares what da mall security guard wouldn't like? Da guy doesn't get to carry a gun; he has a flashlight. Oh no don't make Officer Smith mad or he'll make your pupils really small s*** look out.
With the success of Muppet Babies (CBS), Flintstone Kids, A Pup Named Scooby Doo (both on ABC), Tom & Jerry Kids (Fox Kids), Hanna Barbera gave NBC a chance at Yo Yogi!, and failed.
Liked the theme where they were all teenagers (except for Boo-Boo) hanging out at Jellystone Mall, solving cases. Ranger Smith as a security guard & Doggie Daddy as owner of Jellystone Mall (with Augie Doggie by his side). Then you have Dastardly & Muttley as a boy & pup, along with a rival bear named Roxy. There was one (or sometimes) two stories per episode. My favorite would have to be "Jellystone Jam" where they had teen sensation Magilla Ice (Magilla Gorilla, also a parody of Vanilla Ice).
Unfortunately in late July, NBC cleaned house & replaced all animated shows with Saturday Today (leaving Saved By The Bell & NBA Inside Stuff untouched). CBS would follow in 1997 & ABC in 2004. Is Fox (4KidsTV) next?
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