End of a baby boomer era

News has just moved of the death of Joe Barbera, the surviving half of the great Hanna-Barbera animation team which graced the world with Tom & Jerry, Huckleberry Hound, Yogi Bear and others. It can’t really be called a tragedy when a 95-year-old man dies, but it is a reminder of time’s pitiless passing. Folks my age can recite much of the Hanna-Barbera canon chapter and verse, but our children’s generation looks on in indifferent ignorance (with the possible exception of the Flintstones, who are now seen as advertising characters no different than the Lucky Charms leprechaun).
Hanna-Barbera had such an amazing winning streak in kids’ animation in the 1960s and ’70s, it’s easy to forget some of their second-tier characters such as Wally Gator (a name applied to me as a kid), Atom Ant, Penelope Pitstop, Top Cat, Secret Squirrel (somebody stop me), Josie & the Pussycats and the immortal Hong Kong Phooey.
Much of these names exist now only in the pop-culture lint trap of boomers and their immediate successors and may eventually fade away into obscurity.
Of course, some wise-guy wag may have once said the same thing about comic-book heroes.

6 thoughts on “End of a baby boomer era

  1. You forgot Super Chicken, Tom Slick, George of the Jungle. hese kids are twisted. Their cartoons are highly sexual with themes of sadism and domination and imprisonment. See BRATZ. and animae.I see panties and pornographic posturing in many cartoons. These kids are going to eat the world alive. They want what they want right now. They will have no morals or common courtesy. They are Satans children………

  2. Not to mention gangster posturing, gangster music, convict mentality, oral sex in bathroom stalls in grade schools and high schools, jelly bracelets and all the other pop culture gangsta school shooters and rappin hip-hoppin WUGS. (white urban gangsters). They are ravening wolves!

  3. You know Santa Cruz is dead and gone when you see NO comments on this page. After the earthquake and everybody bagged it and the Pacific Garden Mall was rebuilt by right wing money grubbing yuppies and all that.

  4. I was a kid in the 60’s, but we didn’t get a tv until ’68. By then I was a big bookworm, and we weren’t allowed to watch a lot of tv anyway. So sadly, I have nothing to contribute…but I could talk forever about kids’ books!

  5. Don’t forget that the Flintstones were actually intended as kiddy-accessible cartoons for an audience of adults. The series originally ran in prime time, as a stone-age homage to “The Honeymooners.”

    I believe Scooby-Doo was also a Hanna-Barbera product. Mr. Baines, would you consider Scooby and the gang as first- or second-tier characters? Be careful with your answer: a scooby snack is riding on it!

    To Dave Laylow: Super Chicken, George of the Jungle, and Tom Slick were produced by Jay Ward and Bill Scott, whose names you might remember from the Rocky and Bullwinkle series. They were among Hanna-Barbera’s worthiest competitors. Some others that I remember from the same timeframe: Total Television (Underdog, Tennessee Tuxedo), Bob Clampett (Beany and Cecil), and Filmation (Groovie Goolies, He-Man, Archie/Sabrina cartoons, and Fat Albert).

    And finally, even though they weren’t in the same league as H-B, much less among the “worthiest competitors,” can I nevertheless get some love for the gang that brought us Roger Ramjet?

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