Friday, August 12, 2011

Saturday Morning's Forgotten Heroes: WildC.A.T.S. (1994)

1994 was a big year for Image Comics in that they landed their first television deals for their properties, but neither would be very successful in the long haul.

Sam Kieth's The Maxx was picked up by MTV as part of their primetime series, Oddities, but for reasons known only to Kieth and the network, Maxx would not make his television debut until almost a year after he was supposed to, sealing his fate. By the time Maxx hit the air, Image's other entry had come and gone.

Jim Lee's WildC.A.T.S. was adapted by Canada's Nelvana Studios, which sold the series to CBS. So far, so good, right? Wrong. The series debuted two weeks later than it was supposed to due to unforeseen delays in production. Worse, CBS scheduled the series to air at 11 am (ET), when some network affiliates were blacking out network shows in favor of more profitable syndicated programming. Here's the open:

As it turns out, that two week delay at the start of the season proved costly, as WildC.A.T.S. was cancelled after 1 season. The comic book proved to have a much longer shelf life. What may have hurt the show, more than anything, was that most casual fans weren't familiar with Image Comics as they were DC or Marvel. Two of the characters, Voodoo & Grifter, will be starring in their own separate DC books starting next month, nearly 20 years after their debut. The others? Wait & see, methinks.

Rating: B-.

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