Monday, July 12, 2010

Favorite Episodes: TaleSpin

by Amy K. Bredemeyer

TaleSpin
is a really unique show for a number of reasons. It started as a movie that later became a four-parter in syndication. It's kinda based on some of the characters in The Jungle Book, but years and years after that movie came out, and the characters are really loosely based. Shere Kahn is still the "bad guy" and all... but now he's a business tycoon. Baloo is still the main character (although you could certainly argue that Mowgli was the protagonist in The Jungle Book), but he isn't as much of an oaf, since he does fly planes and has a great sense of direction, among other things. Louie is still there and still a party animal. But we're FAR from being in the jungle. In fact, we're in a seaside town called Cape Suzette. And we've added a bunch of other characters, mostly incredibly lovable.

It's apparently also remarkably similar to a short-lived 1982 ABC show called Tales of the Gold Monkey, but I've never heard of it otherwise so I can't really speak to it. It was not animated.

Naming favorite episodes for this series is a little tricky. Because it ran pretty much in a single year, it's classified as just one season, even though it has 65 episodes. So, it makes sense to choose based on the breakdowns on the DVD sets. Except, the final eleven episodes have not yet been put on DVD, and one of them has been banned from being aired, and nobody knows if it'll ever be seen again. Still, that's the system I went with.

Volume I: "The Balooest Of The Blue Bloods" (S01E27) Baloo hears that he has been willed a mansion, since apparently he has some Barons in his family from long ago. He, Rebecca, and WildCat go to check it out, and WildCat gets lost while heading to the bathroom. Strange things start happening, and eventually it turns out that the servants want Baloo dead.
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

Volume II: "War of the Weirds" (S01E36) Baloo doesn't want to go to work, so he makes up a lie to tell Rebecca. She has been making him work really hard lately, in his defense. The lie keeps getting bigger and bigger, and eventually involves some aliens. Except, they aren't the only two people in on the conversation... a crazy old guy hears this on the radio and decides to go on a shooting rampage, believing that aliens really are attacking.
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

What-will/may-be Volume III: "The Sound and the Furry" (S01E58) There's a big flying contest going on (there sure are a lot in this show, aren't there?!?), and Baloo is entering. WildCat goes to look at some planes, and befriends three little creatures. The problem is, they are wearing radio-controlled collars, and when the signal goes off, they are take things apart. This wreaks havoc on the planes everywhere nearby!
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

And, for those who may be wondering, the "banned" episode is the finale (though not in any sort of chronological or closure-type way). In it, there's a bomb in a package that Baloo is supposed to deliver to the High Marshall of Thembria, an area often-visited by those on the show. Nothing big, but you know how bombs and terrorism these days. And, I guess, some USSR-ish stuff. It's also on youtube, just search for "flying dupes" if you're interested.

1 comment:

steet said...

TaleSpin is one of the best shows ever made.