The Best and Worst of Celebrities in 80s and 90s Cartoons

But mostly worst. Either way, see ’em all before they’re forgotten again…

Just like we did here with our exhaustive expose on Adult Jokes in Kids Cartoons, here’s a visual companion to Laser Time’s Animated Vanity episode! What happens when popular athletes actors, and comedians meet with idea-starved Hollywood executives? On special occasions, an uninspired, forgettable, and short-lived cartoon series! Below you’ll find the animated intros to each and every unbelievably egocentric and wholly animated vanity projects we discussed in this here episode. After all, we wouldn’t expect you to just take our word for it when we say that Damon Wayans had a cartoon series starring a crippled version of himself – you gotta see that shat for yourself!

Airdate: 1989-1992 (3 seasons)
Official Description: “Comedian John Candy runs a summer camp!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Sensing that his heart is about to explode, a corpulent Canadian actor opts to move forward with a production that doesn’t require him to stand.

Airdate: 1991 (13 episodes)
Official Description: “Nick McClary owned a magic baseball glove which, if punched three times, granted his every wish!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Macaulay Culkin’s people deftly maneuver their meal ticket off camera to shield the public from the decaying cuteness of their star brought upon by the inevitable onset of puberty in this insipid blend of Aladdin and The Twilight Zone.

Airdate: 1985-1987 (2 seasons)
Official Description: “The stars of the World Wrestling Federation go beyond the mat to find wacky adventure!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Vince McMahon capitalizes on the popularity of the characters of WWF by refusing to pay them to voice themselves in crude plotlines ripped straight from I Love Lucy from the animators who brought you Inspector Gadget.

Airdate: 1990-1998 (8 seasons, 81 episodes)
Official Description: “From the mind of Howie Mandel comes an animated adventure through the mind of an imaginative little boy!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Talentless comedian more famous for rubber gloved antics than jokes or punchlines, rehashes a silly voice used previously for Gizmo (Gremlins) and Skeeter (Muppet Babies) to earn yet another undeserved paycheck. (And that’s by his own admission!)

Airdate: 1994-1998 (3 seasons, 38 episodes, 1 Christmas Special)
Official Description: “The adventures of Louie Anderson as a child, growing up with his sweet-hearted mother, his loud and war crazed father, his 10 siblings!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: A fat and unlikable comedian voices several fat and unlikable characters.

Airdate: 1990-1991 (13 episodes)
Official Description: “[They’re] the stars of stage and wax and video/ [They’re] about to tear it up, so here we go!” (Actual lyrics from the intro)
Cynical Laser Time Take©: While an iconic hairstyle could certainly propel one into celebrity during the waning shadows of the 80s, the Marge Simpson of Happy Rap hairstyles (not sure who’s Kid and who’s Play) could do little to distinguish this show.

Airdate: 1991 (13 episodes)
Official Description: “Three of the most famous sports stars of the day team up to respond to emergencies around the world!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: The second worst animated Michael Jordan pairing after Space Jam! The only thing “Bo Knows” these days is how to disappear completely from the public eye.

Airdate: 1991 (13 episodes)
Official Description: “Whenever trouble threatens his homeboys, Stanley puts on his magical dancing shoes and is transformed into his super-heroic alter-ego, Hammerman!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: At the height of his career, MC Hammer’s critics accused him of being the biggest sellout rap music had ever known. Then Hammer starred in this superhero cartoon and made them all look fucking stupid.

Airdate: 1965-1969 (4 seasons, 39 episodes)
Official Description: “The musical adventures of the greatest of the Rock Bands!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Even though The Beatles had outgrown their mop-top and matching suit persona, the public had not. While the band was growing beards and dropping acid, viewers ate up this idiotic cartoon that proved there was no measure of hackneyed merchandise the Fab Four couldn’t distance themselves from.

Airdate: 1996 (13 episodes)
Official Description: “A 10 year-old boy deals with the problems of pre-adolescence in his neighborhood in lower Manhattan!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: The cancellation of In Living Color left dozens of Wayans siblings unemployed. Desperate measures were taken in the form of this completely forgotten cartoon show starring a younger and crippled variation of Damon Wayans, who strangely looks more like a black version of those awful aliens from Mac & Me.

Airdate: 1990 (13 episodes)
Official Description: “A madcap cartoon starring an 8-year-old version of Roseanne Barr!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: It appears Roseanne was too busy with her sitcom to lend her voice to, um… herself, so we’re left with a depiction that makes Lil’ Rosie sound a helluva  lot more like a female W.C. Fields. Cancellation was swift and just.

Airdate: 2003-2004 (2 seasons, 12 episodes)
Official Description: “An animated parody of Hollywood from the mind and mouth of Robert Evans!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Desperate to find an animated companion piece for its ratings hit, South Park, Comedy Central greenlit this show based on the persona most of its lead-in audience had never heard of.

Airdate: 2006-2008 (2 seasons, 28 episodes)
Official Description: “Animated series about an Atlanta performing arts school grad who ditches a successful music career to become a music teacher!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: The wackier half of Outkast leads up a show most of his fans never knew existed. This very well could be the most modern take on lamentable practice of needlessly shoving celebrities into cartoons.

Airdate: 1982 (13 episodes)
Official Description: “Guardian angel Andy LeBeau goes to Earth, and hangs out with some other children and helps with their problems!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Aside from Casper, probably the only animated show that begins with the implied death of its star. If any of you have received help from a ghostly Gary Coleman apparition, just relax. It’s all part of Hanna-Barbera’s poorly animated prophecy.

Airdate: 1986 (5 episodes)
Official Description: “Carlos Ray Norris plays a US operative who has a team consisting of Pepper, a technological genius, Kimo, a Samurai warrior, Reed, his apprentice, Tabe, a Sumo warrior, and Too Much, the young ward. Together they foil the plans of The Claw and his right hand man, The Super Ninja!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Chuck Norris’s semi-racist cartoon didn’t get canceled after 5 episodes, he renewed every other show but his. (Yeah… we shoulda let the Chuck Norris Facts stuff stay dead. Sorry!)

Mister T (starring Mr. T!)
Airdate: 1983-1986 (3 seasons)
Official Description: “Mr. T and his young gymnastics team fight crime whenever they encounter it on their tour!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: A single, half-naked adult travels around with a brood of unguarded children? Sounds like a recipe for sexy!


Airdate: 200-2005 (3 seasons)
Official Description: “Jackie Chan and his extended family must fight a criminal organization for magic talismans that could release an evil spirit!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: Nothing to say really. We’re just pretty ashamed we missed this one…

Airdate: 1993 (1 season, 40 episodes)
Official Description: “Listen up you all, you’re the Boyzz brigade / When it’s Laser Time put on the 3D shades!”
Cynical Laser Time Take©: “Listen up you all, you’re the Boyzz brigade / When it’s Laser Time put on the 3D shades!”

28 thoughts on “The Best and Worst of Celebrities in 80s and 90s Cartoons

  1. I remember being pissed off at class of 3000, I didnt even know andre or whatever and still dont. All I knew was it was a shitty cartoon.

    Wish kid was okay if i remember

    But Jackie Chan adv.s was really good.

  2. man im not even 17 yet and i remember class of 3000 which is still better than some of the crap on now and the pretty good jackie chan adventures.

  3. One more thing, Jackie Chan Adventures, the majority of it was very enjoyable, Bad day, bad day, bad day.

    Awesome article, based on the audio only, I expected Bots Master to be way more cartoony and colorful, guess I need to put on my 3D shades

  4. Did everybody forgot about the HiHi Puffy Ami Yumi Show? Granted they were exclusively famous in Japan, (I could be wrong on that. Too lazy to do research.) but it certainly falls under the animated, celebrity, vanity category. Kinda disappointed. It was pretty good.

  5. I had been waiting for this, thanks Chris! Glad to see Jackie Chan Adventures on here, I was hoping you’d get to it in the episode, but this works too.

    But I gotta say, “he Best and Worst of Celebrities in 80s and 90s Cartoons”? “he best”? Get it together Chris.

  6. It’s borderline, but there was also My Dad the Rock Star, a 2003-2005 series created by Gene Simmons of KISS. Even though he does not voice the titular character, watch the intro and you’ll see it was clearly based on him.

    I saw a few episodes, and it was about as mediocre as most post-2000 cartoons.

  7. If you make a shirt that says
    “It’s laser time
    Put on the 3D shades!”
    Then i’d buy it day one.

  8. i loved jackie chan’s adventures. also when listening to the episode i thought bobbys world sounded familiar but watching the intro made my head go insane with nostalgia. i totally watched the crap outta that show.

    Great companion article!

  9. A few thoughts:

    – No one mentioned what is perhaps the greatest aspect of Pro Stars – Wayne Gretzky’s character is defined by eating a lot. Bo Jackson is really strong, Michael Jordan is really good at throwing things, and Wayne Gretzky… constantly eats. Not in an unspoken, “Brad Pitt is always eating in his movies” sort of way, but expressly stated as his one and only character trait.

    -Salute Your Shorts, the Nickelodeon show, cribbed a lot from Camp Candy. The generic blonde lead kid, the tomboy female athlete, the prissy girl, the genius in glasses, the incompetent counselor, etc. Stock character tropes, to be sure, but it’s a big coincidence that a camp-set show airing immediately post-Camp Candy has basically the exact same characters.

    -Watch some 80’s Howie Mandel stand-up, particularly one of HBO’s Young Comedians specials, and you will see a man whose body is composed of 97% cocaine. It’s worth watching once, as he looks like he’s going to launch into the sky and explode like a firework at any moment.

    1. Wow… Awesome factoids! You have what I can only call an ASTOUNDING memory of Pro-Stars. Kinda wish you were on the show with us…

  10. Loved the Jackie Chan Adventures. I was waiting for it for the whole episode and yet it went unmentioned. Oh well. It also spun off into a comic book series that came with a tin box and replicas of the talismans in the show. I had all of them and I was honestly the coolest kid in my mind.

    That show was actually pretty awesome

    1. Also I think that it was the only show in this list that made it to the UK, probably because (except for the Beatles) none of these people are really known over here

      1. I remember Little Rosey and Camp Candy being on UK TV at one point; also, I’m sure I saw the Kid n Play cartoon, but hadn’t heard of the bastards outside of that. In fact, even now… were they actually a real rap duo, or is it like the Monkees? Maybe I’m too old.

        P.S. well done the voice artists from the Beatles cartoon for accurately representing their MadeUpShire accents.

  11. I’m posting one you guys didn’t mention: New Kids on the Block cartoon… — as someone who had a teenaged older sister in 1989-90, this was torture.

    A lot of these are familiar now as I look at them. When you guys mentioned that Robert Evans cartoon I was like “wtf” but now looking at Kid Notorious I remember it — barely. Same with that Damon Wayans cartoon and his weird Dobby ears.

    I remember not liking Camp Candy much as a kid, mostly because I was into action cartoons as a kid and CC struck me as a “sitcom” kind of toon. I loved John Candy though at the time from Uncle Buck and helping Kevin’s mom get home in Home Alone. lol

    The only reason I know of The Gary Coleman Show is because Cartoon Network used to play the older stuff in the daytime (or late at night pre-Adult Swim)…

    The point is: Jackie Chan Adventures was goddamned awesome!

  12. Barely any of these made it over here, thankfully, most of them look god-awful.

    Also after watching that Class of 3000 thing I just realised, is it just me or is every asian girl in cartoons always depicted as a DJ?

  13. Thank you for the nostalgia trip Chris. It was fun hearing all the shows in the latest Laser Time

    1. We DEFINITELY should’ve included Harlem Globetrotters. It would’ve been the same amount of stretch we showed in including Hulk Hogan’s Rock n Wrestling. But as for The Stooges, that’s kind of a cartoon based on previously established characters, not celebrities. Or at least that’s what I figured at the time…

      Man, but I really appreciate your knowledge of The Stooges 3! Didn’t know anyone but me remembered all of that. If I had any balls, we’d make their bizarre, fascinating and sad history the focus of an entire episode.

  14. huh, I used to watch alot of Jackie Chan Adventures, really liked it then, I should see how it holds up today. But did anybody ever know the story behind the credits song in Jackie Chan Adventures?? Heres the song as it appears at the end of every episode of this children’s cartoon:

    sound familiar? for some reason, somebody thought it was a good idea to base it off of this song:

  15. he 4got about the new kids on the block cartoon on Disney now that was a shitty cartoon series they didn’t even have the actual New kids 2 do the voices just a bunch uv guys from California tryin 2 talk with a Boston accent

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