In the 80s we have some great action figures…and sometimes they had great cartoons to go along with them. Transformers, He-Man, G.I. Joe, Voltron and Thundercats come to mind as some of the best, or most memorable at least, of the 80s action cartoons.
Then there were the rest…some featured celebrities, some were thinly veiled knock offs of other successful shows…others were just plain crap. After careful consideration, and knowing full well that there this list could spark a debate that could burn as eternally as the Springfield tire fire, I present to you…the 10 Worst 80s Action Cartoons.
Anthropomorphic Dinosaurs that can “Dinovolve” into regular looking Dinosaurs?!? What’s not to love! It’s like Transformers…but 100% Dino-tastic!!! Dinosaucers last only 1 season in the 80s, but those 65 episodes would be broadcast well into the mid-90s on networks desperate for cheap content. The show as so unsuccessful that the toyline based on it was cancelled before it even hit the shelves.
9. Saber Rider and the Star Sheriffs
Attempting to capitalize on the success of shows like Galaxy Rangers and Bravestarr, WEP, the company behind Voltron, decided to grab a moderately successful anime series called Star Musketeer Bismarck, and rework it as Saber Rider.
They did manage a catchy theme song that I will occasionally still burst out into song over, and you have to love their giant robot RAMROD, but overall…it was lame as lame can be.
8. Voltron Vehicle Force
Speaking of WEP and their sucktastic line-up, the Vehicle Voltron Force will forever earn a spot on lists like this if for no other reason than because the entire voice cast was the same as the Voltron Lion Force, and no one even bothered to TRY and sound different. Kids would sit down to something that sounded EXACTLY like the Voltron they knew…even the music was the same…but everyone looked different. It was confusing as all hell.
The robot did look pretty bad ass, though…but that alone is not enough to keep it off our list.
The second, and last, “Dinosaurs meet Technology” cartoon on our list are the Dino-Riders. 14 episodes of this show were produced, solely for the purpose of launching the Tyco toyline of the same name.
While the toy line met with limited success, and high enough praise that the Smithsonian released the Dinosaur figures (minus futuristic weapons) themselves as a toy line, the cartoon show blew.
6. Bionic Six
“They are a family…and they make me wanna puke…” those aren’t EXACTLY the words from the cartoon theme song…but damn they should be. I always liked the toys in this line because of their transparent bionic parts, but this show, which admittedly looks like it had high production values was just god awful…
5. Rambo – The Force of Freedom
Why, dear lord why, would you take an exceptionally violent film series (Rambo III is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most violent film EVER) and turn it into a cartoon where I shirtless man can fly through a glass window without scratch on him? Oh yeah…to sell toys. I forgot.
4. Mr. T and the All American Team
Speaking of things that ought not be turned into television shows…just why the hell is Mr. T traveling around the country with a bunch of gymnastics kids fighting crime? I mean seriously…is the because of all the cocaine in the 80s? Is that where this came from?
What would happen if the guys behind Thundercats decided to do a show JUST LIKE Thundercats…but with sea life? THIS!
These little bastards wanted to be Transformers so bad it hurts. Just look at them…they’re just waiting for the day when Hasbro buys them up so they can join the “real” transforming robots on a successful show.
1. Turbo Teen
Turbo Teen wanted to be Knight Rider so bad it could almost taste it. The horrible, horrible excuse for a cartoon aired duing the height of Knight Rider’s popularity, and mimicked the show in every way legally possible.
This terrible excuse for an animated series only last one terrible, terrible season.
So there you have it. I’m sure you can think of shows that you think would be better suited for this list, so feel free to mention them in the comments below…