October 8th, 2006

krazy koati

Boo boo, Baba, Dee Dee

I stopped watching Cartoon Network about a year ago. They changed the new logo away from the nice checkerboard, and got rid of all the quirky house ads in favor of the camera drifting over CGI-ish renditions of ``Townsville'' sites. While I missed the Bollywood house ad or ``Olive Oyl, Warrior Princess,'' it was when they switched to four commercial breaks each half hour, though, often breaking up the middle cartoon, that I quit.

Ah, but -- Starhub Cable just added Boomerang. I couldn't be happier. I know Boomerang in the United States has declined from the days it showed The Skate Birds or run an afternoon of Devlin without apologies. Boomerang Singapore isn't as great as the golden days of the US version, but it is still great. It was joyous to see The New Shmoo, one of Hanna-Barbera's last tries to clone Scooby-Doo, this time the kids a shoestring mystery-comics publisher who solve all manner of mysteries but are perpetually foiled in getting photographic proof, which means they can't use them for publishable comics, despite the occasional help of Al Capp's Shmoo.

Shmoo is, as required by law, voiced by Frank Welker, and while Shmoo is as malleable as you could hope he's less enthusiastic about being eaten than he is in the comic strip. The episode, ``The Energy Raiders from Space,'' was about a flying saucer stealing energy-releated technologies, and not to spoil it but the gang discovered the raiders were, indeed, the other people in the episode. Once again, the villains have a scheme requiring such a startup investment and development of special effects technologies they could make a more reliable profit selling what they did develop instead. Supervillains are just no good at business plans.

Obviously, it doesn't take a whole lot to make me happy. But with a lineup including Josie and the Pussycats, three-hour ``Big Buckets'' of the Looney Tunes, Yogi Bear, Captain Caveman, Snooper and Blabber, those awful Daffy Duck/Speedy Gonzales cartoons, and The Great Grape Ape, how unhappy can I be?

Trivia: The Space Task Group was established, unofficially, on 8 October 1958. Source: Project Mercury: A Chronology, James M Grimwood. NASA SP-4001.

Currently Reading: Fortune's Formula, William Poundstone.