Monday, January 11, 2016

Rare Treats: The Ballad of Smokey The Bear (1966)

Here's a really rare treat.

Videocraft (Rankin-Bass) sold their first non-holiday special to NBC in 1966, airing on Thanksgiving night. The Ballad of Smokey The Bear purported to explain how Smokey got his name, as seen through the eyes of his brother (James Cagney).

Three years later, Smokey returned, this time in a line-animated Saturday morning series for ABC, with Jackson Weaver, who was voicing Smokey in the commercials, continuing in that role. Unfortunately, it lasted just 1 season, and was replaced by The Reluctant Dragon & Mr. Toad the next year.

Rating: B.

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