Category Archives: shazam
Lou Scheimer, the father of Filmation, and the king of American television animation for many of our childhoods, has passed away at the age of 84.
Filmation was a small animation studio, one of the few still doing animation in the United States, rather than shipping it overseas. Founded by Scheimer, Hal Sutherland, and Norm Prescott in 1962, they did some little known cartoons like “Rod Rocket.” They really caught fire when they licensed the DC Comics characters in 1966.
Beginning with “The New Adventures of Superman,” they began to expand to shorts that featured other characters like Superboy, Aquaman, Batman and Robin, and later the Justice League of America and the Teen Titans, as well as those groups’ individual members. These cartoons were, along with the 1966 “Batman” TV series on ABC, my gateway drug into comic books. My love of Aquaman, Superboy, and others sprang from early viewings.
The DC deal brought another comics company to Filmation’s offices, and Archie came to Saturday morning animation for years under their guidance. Later in the 1970s, Filmation became a major player in the animation game, producing cartoons of “The Brady Kids,” “Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids,” and “Star Trek: The Animated Series” among many others.
Filmation delved into live-action with shows like “Isis,” “Space Academy” and Shazam.” While the studio began to get a reputation for repeating backgrounds, limited animation, recycling designs, rapid jump cuts, and using the same music over again, they had also produced some real quality programming as well.
In the 1980s Filmation produced some of its most well known shows like “He-Man and the Masters of the Universe,” which featured, like many of the previous shows, a lesson at the end of every episode. Before closing up shop in 1989, Filmation also produced over the years some very cool versions of Flash Gordon, Tarzan, and the Lone Ranger, using then fairly new rotoscoping techniques.
With the loss of Lou Scheimer on Friday, we have lost one the legends of animation, and for me, a big chunk of my childhood. He’ll be missed.
The All Things Fun! New Comics Vidcast is shot live every week at All Things Fun! – the South Jersey/Philadelphia area’s best comics and gaming store, located in West Berlin, NJ.
Co-hosts Ed (Silky Smooth) Evans, Allison (Amethyst) Eckel, and Glenn (Shazam) Walker discuss the new comics out this week in wicked high definition video, and also available on the YouTube. See it here!
Discussion featured in this week’s special creepy old man episode includes: Ed’s silky smooth radio voice, Green Lantern Corps: New Guardians #0, Sword of Sorcery #0 featuring Amethyst, sooo much Allison love for Amethyst, Beowulf, Wonder Woman #0, Justice League #0 featuring the little bastich, The Super Cool Secret Word Contest, the rest of the DC zeroes, rushing through Marvels, New Mutants #49, Ultimates United We Stand, The Walking Dead #102, Ed’s indies, Ghost #0, Star Treks and red shirts, Allison’s kids comics, and Ed’s trades.
Be sure to check out the wild new All Things Fun! website, and the All Things Fun! Blogs, by Allison and Glenn, now featuring The Vidcast Drinking Game so you can play along at home, and ATF! on YouTube (don’t forget to subscribe to the channel while you’re there, and leave a comment or two on the Vidcast as well!).
And be back here every Wednesday (or Tuesdays at midnight) to watch the new broadcast, and thereafter throughout the week!
Don’t forget to get your secret word in to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday!
It’s the end of the year and everyone else in the world is posting their best and worst lists for 2007, so why not me? Keep in mind though, I’m not strictly a guy who goes by when something came out as opposed to when I experienced it. Sooo, these are all things I was hipped to this year.
“Dexter” far and away was the best this year, even if the second season did drift for a bit in the middle. Still the best. BBC offerings “Jekyll,” “Torchwood,” “Life on Mars” and “Five Days” are also up there.
“Heroes” has had its ups and downs but is still one of the better shows out there, and still the best television version of the superhero genre ever done.
Of the new season I’ve been quite impressed with “Journeyman,” “Pushing Daisies” and “Reaper.” All of which I have trouble believing can sustain their premises longterm, but for the moment, they’re quite good.
Throw in “Moonlight,” “Entourage,” “Zorro – La Espada y la Rosa,” “To Catch a Predator” and “Legion of Super-Heroes” (for the most part, I’m still cringing from the Karate kid episode), and that’s the tops for me in TV.
On the bad side, there have been a lot of disappointments – shows I used to like that just fizzled badly. Among them, “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “24,” “Rescue Me” to some extent, “Chuck” which started strong, “The 4400” and “Scrubs.”
The best of the year is hands down Jeff Smith’s Shazam! Monster Society of Evil, along with Skip Martin’s Bizarre New World, Gail Simone’s Wonder Woman, Steve Niles’ Creeper, Brad Meltzer’s Justice League of America and the return of the western with Jonah Hex and The Lone Ranger.
The worst would be Amazons Attack, Jodi Picoult’s Wonder Woman and of course, Joe Quesada’s death knell for marriage, Spider-Man: One More Day.
My favorites this year include Dreamgirls, The Departed, The Holiday, The Good German, F*ck, Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle, The Host, She (1935), Camp, Latter Days, Falling Down and Silver Hawk. The best of the bunch would be House of D, The TV Set, Dummy (2003) and The Illusionist.
Among the worst were Oldboy, The Black Dahlia, The Zodiac, Eragon, the Tarantino half of Grindhouse, Spider-Man 3, V for Vendetta, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, MegaSnake, Poseidon and Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.
Let’s hope for better in 2008, please.