Monday, July 31, 2017

Tooniversary: The first episode of Kid Power (1972)

Normally, I'd do the "famous firsts" on the first of the month, like tomorrow. However, I couldn't let this pass or wait until tomorrow. Rest assured, there will be a famous first episode tomorrow, just the same.

Anyway, Morrie Turner's Wee Pals was adapted for television by Arthur Rankin, Jr. & Jules Bass as Kid Power for ABC in 1972, so the series marks its 45th anniversary this year. Long time Rankin-Bass standby Paul Frees (who also worked for just about everybody) heads a voice cast that includes a pair of 2nd generation actors in April Winchell (Paul's daughter), who voices Connie, and Jay Silverheels, Jr. (Rocky). While April continued on, and still works to this day, young Mr. Silverheels wasn't heard from much again.

In the opener, the Rainbow Club tries to raise money for baseball uniforms.



It was supposed to be ABC's answer to Bill Cosby's Fat Albert over on CBS. However, Kid Power was shunted off to Sundays the next season, then cancelled. Funny thing. Kid Power aired first, but folks preferred Cosby back then. While Turner passed away a few years back, Wee Pals is still going strong. It's another one of those strips I remember reading as a kid that isn't around in my area anymore.

Rating: B.

2 comments:

Christopher Sobieniak said...

It's another one of those strips I remember reading as a kid that isn't around in my area anymore.

There's a lot of strips still being produced out there that aren't locally in my paper too. I'm sure the internet makes it easier to see these anyway but as a kid, knowing they existed meant finding those paperback reprints or picking up an out-of-town paper to read them.

hobbyfan said...

And IIRC, there were paperback collections back then, too. Today, those would be collector's items that are hard to find.