Wonderbug

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Wonderbug
Wonderbug1.jpeg
C.C., Susan, Barry, and Wonderbug
Format Children's television series
Created by Joe Ruby
Ken Spears[1]
Starring David Levy
John-Anthony Bailey
Carol Anne Seflinger
Voices of Frank Welker
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 22
Production
Producer(s) Sid and Marty Krofft
Running time 0:15 (per episode)
Broadcast
Original channel ABC
Original run September 11, 1976 – September 2, 1978

Wonderbug is a segment of the first and second season of the American television series The Krofft Supershow, from 1976 to 1978. It was shot in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California. The show was rerun as part of ABC's Sunday morning series.[2]

Plot[edit]

Wonderbug's alter ego "Schlepcar" (so named due to its personalized California license plate "SCHLEP") was an old, beat up, conglomeration of several junked cars that looked like a rusty dune buggy. Like Herbie of Disney movie fame, Schlepcar was alive and could drive itself, and could also talk in a mumbling voice. It was found in a junk yard by teenagers Barry Buntrock (David Levy), C.C. McNamara (John-Anthony Bailey) and Susan Talbot (Carol Anne Seflinger). Schlepcar transformed into the shiny metal-flake orange Wonderbug when a magic horn was sounded. In his Wonderbug identity, Schlepcar had the power of flight and was able to help the three teens capture crooks and prevent wrongdoing.[3]

In Wonderbug mode, the car was a Volkswagen-based Meyers Manx-clone body. Specifically the body was a Dune Runner manufactured by Dune Buggy Enterprises of Westminster, California.[4] Dune Buggy Enterprises offered the Dune Runner with three different hood choices. Wonderbug has the T- Bird hood choice.[5]

The car had articulated eyeball headlights, and a custom bumper that resembled a mouth; different bumpers were sometimes used to give the car different facial expressions. When the car spoke in its mumbling voice, a rubber puppet stand-in with a moving mouth was sometimes used.

The space that would normally contain the left rear passenger seat instead contained a box, described in dialog as "the costume trunk"; this box actually served to conceal a hidden driver in scenes in which the car drives itself. The car also had a long fender-mounted radio antenna that terminated with a robot-like claw or gripper. Its license plate would change to "1DERBUG".

Barry often thought he was the brains of the outfit. However, it was usually Susan who came up with the ideas that saved them.[6]

Other appearances[edit]

Wonderbug shared its half-hour time slot with other Krofft Supershow titles, including Magic Mongo, Bigfoot and Wildboy, Dr. Shrinker, The Lost Saucer, and Electra Woman and Dyna Girl.

Ideal Toy Company published a board game in 1977.[7]

Aladdin Industries produced a metal lunchbox in 1976.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ruby-Spears' Filmography. Received on 15 Sept. 2007.
  2. ^ "Wonderbug". 70slivekidvid.com. Retrieved 2010-11-16. 
  3. ^ "Temple Of Schlock: View-Master: Dr. Shrinker And Wonderbug". Templeofschlock.blogspot.com. 2010-07-21. Retrieved 2010-11-16. 
  4. ^ "Dune Buggy Archives". Dune Buggy Archives. 2006-11-22. Retrieved 2010-11-16. 
  5. ^ "Dune Runner pictures by dunebuggyarchives - Photobucket". S23.photobucket.com. Retrieved 2010-11-16. 
  6. ^ Hal Erickson (2007). Sid and Marty Krofft: A Critical Study of Saturday Morning Children's Television, 1969-1993. McFarland. ISBN 978-0-7864-3093-2. 
  7. ^ "Wonderbug Game (1977)". Retrieved 2010-11-16. 
  8. ^ "vintage lunchpails boxes and thermos bottles". Gasolinealleyantiques.com. 2010-11-10. Retrieved 2010-11-16. 

External links[edit]