Independent producer Ken Snyder and his Pantomime Pictures first came on the scene with Roger Ramjet in 1965, so why did it take so long to produce another series?
While that question might never be answered, Snyder more than made up for his in absentia by returning in 1969 with 2 series, both sold to ABC. A ways back, we reviewed Skyhawks. Now, we turn our attention to what would be the last series Snyder would ever sell to the networks.
Part of the reason you don't see reruns of Hot Wheels anywhere is that the series ended up being one season and done, due in large part to complaints lodged with the Federal Communications Commission alleging that the show was a glorified infomercial for Mattel's namesake toy line. It didn't matter that there was also a comic book based on the show that came out around the same time, published by DC. In an ironic twist, legendary artist Alex Toth, who'd done character designs for Hanna-Barbera, was one of the artists associated with the book.
Years pass, and a new version of Hot Wheels, more closely associated with the toy line than the original, is currently airing on Cartoon Network. You'd think CN would find it within themselves to locate and acquire the original, just to run it on Boomerang, but no. The suits are a wee bit skittish when it comes to passing coin to find some shows that haven't seen the light of day in forever. They go el scrimpo instead.
For a while, there were some excerpts from certain episodes available on YouTube, but those clips apparently were pulled some time back. Muttley16, though, offers up the open, with theme music composed & performed by Mike Curb and his band, the Curbstones, who did the same for Skyhawks and also contributed music to another ABC frosh, Hanna-Barbera's Cattanooga Cats.
Mattel, I assume, owns the rights to the series, and probably had some leverage to take the excerpts off YouTube. I'm begging them to consider releasing this show on DVD, as it'll approach its 45th anniversary in 2014.