The Archie Show

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The Archie Show
The Archie Show.jpg
Also known as
  • The Archie Comedy Hour
  • Archie's Funhouse
GenreAnimated sitcom
Musical
Created byJohn L. Goldwater (comic)
Bob Montana (character designs)
Based on
Archie Andrews
by
  • John L. Goldwater
  • Bob Montana
  • Vic Bloom
Written byBob Ogle
Chuck Menville
Len Janson
Jim Ryan
Bill Danch
etc.
Directed byHal Sutherland
StarringDal McKennon
Howard Morris
Jane Webb
John Erwin
ComposerRay Ellis
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of episodes17 (list of episodes)
Production
ProducersNorm Prescott
Lou Scheimer
Running time22 minutes
Production companyFilmation
DistributorVitt Media International
Release
Original networkCBS
Original releaseSeptember 14, 1968 (1968-09-14) –
January 4, 1969 (1969-01-04)
Chronology
Followed byThe Archie Comedy Hour

The Archie Show (also known as The Archies) is an American musical animated sitcom television series produced by Filmation for CBS. Based on the Archie Comics, created by Bob Montana in 1941, The Archie Show aired Saturday mornings on CBS from September 1968 to 1969. The show featured the main characters in the Archie series, including Archie Andrews, Betty Cooper, Veronica Lodge, Reggie Mantle, and Jughead Jones.[1]

In 1969, the show was expanded to an hour and retitled The Archie Comedy Hour, which included a half-hour featuring Sabrina the Teenage Witch.[2] In 1970, the show became Archie's Funhouse, and featured live-action segments. After three seasons, The Archie Show stopped airing on CBS in 1971.[citation needed]

Filmation continued to produce further Archie television series until 1978, including Archie's TV Funnies (1971-1973), The U.S. of Archie (1974-1976) and The New Archie and Sabrina Hour (1977-1978).[3]

Premise[edit]

A typical episode would include two eight-minute stories, a "Dance of the Week" segment, a three-minute musical segment, and a Jughead joke segment. The show was targeted to both kids and young teenagers.[4]

Characters[edit]

The main characters of the show are 17-year-old vocalist/rhythm guitarist Archie Andrews and his teen-age pals from Riverdale High School including: his best friend and food fiend drummer Jughead Jones, wise-cracking bassist Reggie Mantle, beautiful, spoiled-rich girl vocalist/keyboardist Veronica Lodge, attractive, blonde, girl-next-door tomboy vocalist/lead guitarist/percussionist Betty Cooper, and Jughead's English sheepdog Hot Dog.[4][5] On the show, the friends appeared as a bubblegum pop band featuring Archie on lead guitar. Other characters in the show included Mr. Weatherbee, Miss Grundy, Dilton Doiley, Moose Mason, Pop Tate, Mr. Lodge, and Coach Kleats.

Cast[edit]

Episodes[edit]

TitleOriginal air date
"Episode One"September 14, 1968 (1968-09-14)

  • Story 1: The Added Distraction
  • Dance: The Bubblegum
  • Song: "Bang-Shang-A-Lang"
  • Jughead Short: Fetch
  • Story 2: The Disappearing Act
"Episode Two"September 21, 1968 (1968-09-21)

  • Story 1: A Hard Day's Knight
  • Dance: The Jughead
  • Song: "Boys and Girls"
  • Jughead Short: Shadow Boxing
  • Story 2: Beauty Is Only Fur Deep
"Episode Three"September 28, 1968 (1968-09-28)

  • Story 1: Anchors Away
  • Dance: The Beanie
  • Song: "Truck Driver"
  • Jughead Short: Double Duty
  • Story 2: Jughead's Double
"Episode Four"October 5, 1968 (1968-10-05)

  • Story 1: The Circus
  • Dance: The Hamburger Hop
  • Song: "Catchin' Up On Fun"
  • Jughead Short: Painting
  • Story 2: The Prize Winner
"Episode Five"October 12, 1968 (1968-10-12)

  • Story 1: Flying Saucers
  • Dance: The Stick Shift
  • Song: "Ride, Ride, Ride"
  • Jughead Short: Homework
  • Story 2: Field Trip
"Episode Six"October 19, 1968 (1968-10-19)

  • Story 1: The Marathon Runner
  • Dance: The Veronica Walk
  • Song: "La-Dee-Doo-Down-Down"
  • Jughead Short: Pole Vaulting
  • Story 2: Way Out West
"Episode Seven"October 26, 1968 (1968-10-26)

  • Story 1: Hot Rod Drag
  • Dance: The Betty
  • Song: "You Make Me Wanna Dance"
  • Jughead Short: Research
  • Story 2: Snow Business
"Episode Eight"November 2, 1968 (1968-11-02)

  • Story 1: Chimp Off the Old Block
  • Dance: The Banana Split
  • Song: "Time For Love"
  • Jughead Short: Skiing
  • Story 2: Who's Afraid of Reggie Wolf
"Episode Nine[a]"November 9, 1968 (1968-11-09)

  • Story 1: Kids Day
  • Dance: The Drag
  • Song: "Hide and Seek"
  • Jughead Short: lost
  • Story 2: Jughead 'Sampson' Jones
"Episode Ten"November 16, 1968 (1968-11-16)

  • Story 1: Rocket Rock
  • Dance: The Angel
  • Song: "You Little Angel, You"
  • Jughead Short: Retrieval
  • Story 2: Par One
"Episode Eleven"November 23, 1968 (1968-11-23)

  • Story 1: Groovy Ghosts
  • Dance: The Weatherbee
  • Song: "I'm in Love"
  • Jughead Short: Dancing
  • Story 2: PFC Hot Dog
"Episode Twelve"November 30, 1968 (1968-11-30)

  • Story 1: Surf Bored
  • Dance: The Surfer
  • Song: "Love Light"
  • Jughead Short: Searching
  • Story 2: The Computer
"Episode Thirteen"December 6, 1968 (1968-12-06)

  • Story 1: The Old Sea Dog
  • Dance: The Grundy
  • Song: "Rock and Roll Music"
  • Jughead Short: Late
  • Story 2: Jughead's Girl
"Episode Fourteen"December 13, 1968 (1968-12-13)

  • Story 1: Dilton's Folly
  • Dance: The Rocket Ship
  • Song: "Don't Touch My Guitar"
  • Jughead Short: Fishing
  • Story 2: Lodge Department Stores
"Episode Fifteen"December 20, 1968 (1968-12-20)

  • Story 1: Private Eye Jughead
  • Dance: The Indian
  • Song: "Seventeen Ain't Young"
  • Jughead Short: Ice Cream
  • Story 2: Reggie's Cousin
"Episode Sixteen"December 27, 1968 (1968-12-27)

  • Story 1: Strike Three
  • Dance: The Milkshake
  • Song: "Circle of Blue"
  • Jughead Short: Magic
  • Story 2: Cat Next Door
"Episode Seventeen"January 4, 1969 (1969-01-04)

  • Story 1: Jones Farm
  • Dance: The Touchdown
  • Song: "Kissin'"
  • Jughead Short: Housepaint
  • Story 2: Veronica's Veil

Production[edit]

Development[edit]

In 1967, Irv Wilson, Filmation's agent at the time, approached John Goldwater about licensing his comics. Lou Schiemer, founder of Filmation, received a call from Wilson on having the rights to Archie Comics. He replied to his response, "What the hell is Archie? Is it something kids know?" Shortly, he flew out to meet John Goldwater and created a deal. The concept of the show was presented to CBS daytime programming executive, Fred Silverman, with several comic books. It was considered to be one of the cheapest and successful presentations Filmation has ever made. At the time, CBS immediately liked it due to an amount of cartoons, mostly Hanna-Barbera action cartoons, being protested by parent-run organizations, including Action for Children's Television (ACT), and it was bought. Filmation also immediately conceived an idea of making music an essential part of the show's concept.[4]

In 1968, Norm Prescott called Don Kirshner to create music for The Archies. Kirshner happily accepted it, creating a music deal with the band.[4]

Filmation took every aspect from the comics for the concept of the show. The main characters' tone was done for children to relate to the characters. Hot Dog was also immediately created for the show.[4]

Voice cast[edit]

Most of the voice cast involved have worked on Filmation shows. The main voice cast included Dallas McKennon, John Erwin, Jane Webb, and Howard Morris.[4] Don Messick was also part of the show, temporarily replacing Howard Morris for the episode "Beauty Is Only Fur Deep".[citation needed]

Filmation tried to find the voice cast for the 1940s radio show Archie Andrews, but was flopped.[4] According to Lou Schiemer, it was thought to be John Erwin's first Filmation work he ever voiced.[4]

Writing[edit]

The team of writers consisted of Bob Ogle, Chuck Menville, Len Janson, Jim Ryan, Bill Danch, and others. None of the writers involved were writers of the Archie Comics. The writing involved the concepts of dancing, singing, dating, high school, and youth problems for its appeal to young teenagers.[4]

Music[edit]

The franchise's most notable effort was the music element in the form of the animated band The Archies. The Archie Show was designed to emulate the live-action series The Monkees by including rock music into each episode.[1] All of the music included in the show were not specific to the plot of the stories.[4]

For the process of the songs, Filmation's staff told Kirshner what they wanted to work, what the attitude should be, and what they were writing on the stories. Kirshner would work on the songs and deliver the songs as a whole to the studio. Norm Prescott handled all of the music with Kirshner.[4]

With vocals provided by Ron Dante and Toni Wine, the fictional group released a series of real-life albums and singles. Their most successful song is "Sugar, Sugar", which stood at the top of the pop charts for four weeks in 1969. "Sugar, Sugar" became the No. 1 song of 1969 on the Billboard charts, and as of 1969, it reportedly sold six million copies worldwide.[6][7]

Release[edit]

Original broadcast[edit]

The Archie Show debuted its first episode on September 14, 1968 on CBS at the 10 a.m. timeslot, competing with other Saturday-morning cartoons, such as Filmation's own The Batman/Superman Hour and reruns of The Flintstones and Spider-Man. The show was a commercial success; it regularly had a 47 Nielsen rating in the 2-11 age group.[4] It was the most successful Saturday-morning cartoon at the time.[7]

Syndication[edit]

Most of the episodes from all of the series produced by Filmation were syndicated in 1976 as The Archies (excluding material produced for The New Archie and Sabrina Hour, which did not debut until a year later). The music segments from The Archie Comedy Hour were missing in this syndication package, for unknown reasons.[citation needed]

The New Archie and Sabrina Hour was later repeated in syndication, and on The Family Channel in a half-hour format as The Archie and Sabrina Surprise Package;[citation needed] this is the version offered by Universal Television, the current rightsholder for most Filmation programs, including the Archies franchise; a previous rightsholder, Entertainment Rights, was acquired by Classic Media in 2009,[8] followed by DreamWorks Animation's purchase of Classic Media in 2012.[citation needed] Currently, Universal Pictures owns the rights to most Filmation programs, including the Archies franchise, since its purchase in 2016.[9]

In 2010, the show aired on Retro Television Network.[citation needed]

Critical reception[edit]

Hal Erickson, author of Television Cartoon Shows, An Illustrated Encyclopedia described The Archie Show as "not what one could call inspired." Erickson criticized the humor that was described as "executed in a fragmented fashion" and "made doubly obvious by the overuse of a canned laugh track."[1]

Legacy[edit]

The Archie Show utilized a laugh track, the first such example of the colloquially-titled Saturday morning cartoons.[4][10] Owing to the success of The Archie Show, most animated series would begin using laugh tracks until the early 1980s. Previous animated series that used laugh tracks, such as The Flintstones and The Jetsons, were broadcast during prime time with the target audience being adults.[citation needed]

Home media[edit]

Various VHS, Betamax, and laserdisc releases distributed by companies such as New Age Video, Inc. and Embassy Home Entertainment were released in several countries throughout the late '70s and '80s.[citation needed] Four volumes of The Archie Show were released in the early and mid '80s by Thorn EMI Video (later Thorn/EMI HBO Video in the release of its fourth volume) as part of its "Children's Maintee" line of animated shows. Each volume consists three full episodes with some of the other segments intact. All transfers were from unrestored 16mm masters.[citation needed]

Single-disc DVD compilations featuring four episodes each were released in 2004. Video transfers were NTSC-based with restored quality. There were four volumes in all.

  • Archie & Friends featuring The Archie Show includes three episodes of The Archie Show (#9, #3 and #5 as per Genius Entertainment's Complete Series DVD set; #9 has the song and dance segments substituted from #16). Also included is one episode of U.S. Of Archie ("The Star Spangled Banner") and a segment from The Archie Comedy Hour (from show #1, "Coke Machine," as per the Genius Entertainment Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series DVD set).
  • Archie & Friends featuring Sabrina the Teenage Witch includes three Sabrina half-hours ("Pet Shop"/"Funny Bunny," "Blue Whale"/"Football Game," and "Frankie"/"Beached"), one episode of U.S. Of Archie ("The Day Of The Ladies"), and a segment from The Archie Comedy Hour ("Shadow Boxing" from show #1 as per Genius Entertainment's Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series DVD set).
  • Archie & Friends featuring Archie's TV Funnies includes three episodes of Archie's TV Funnies ("Riverdale Grand Prix Auto Race," "The Riverdale Air Circus," and "The Ghost Of Swedlow Swamp"), one episode of U.S. Of Archie ("The Wright Brothers"), and a segment from The Archie Comedy Hour ("Jughead Pulls Fire Hose" from show #3 as per Genius Entertainment's Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series DVD set).
  • Archie & Friends featuring Archie's Classic Cartoons includes one episode each of The Archie Show ("Rocket Rock"/"Par One"), The Archie And Sabrina Surprise Package ("Tops In Cops"), Archie's TV Funnies ("Flying Saucer"), U.S. Of Archie ("The Roughrider"), and a segment from The Archie Comedy Hour ("Telephone" from show #6 as per Genius Entertainment's Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series DVD set).

On July 31, 2007, Genius Products released The Archie Show on DVD in Region 1 for the first time. The DVD-set included a packaged booklet and a special comic strip related to the Archies.[11]

On March 4, 2008, Genius Products, LLC released Archie's Funhouse on DVD in Region 1 for the first time.[12]

Genius Entertainment released the Sabrina The Teenage Witch segments from that season on DVD as part of their own set on April 29, 2008.[13]

DVD name Ep # Release date
The Archie Show: The Complete Series 17 July 31, 2007[11]
Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series 16 March 4, 2008[12]
Sabrina the Teenage Witch: The Complete Animated Series 31 April 29, 2008[13]

Other related media[edit]

The show was broadcast in different formats and under different titles.[2] Some material are believed to be completely lost or destroyed after Hallmark Entertainment bought Filmation's library in 1995.[14][15]

  • The Archie Show (1968–69)
  • Archie and his New Pals (TV special; 1969): Big Moose and Reggie compete against each other for Class President; Sabrina is introduced as a new Riverdale High student.
  • The Archie Comedy Hour (1969–70): all-new material, now in an hour-long format, contained two Sabrina segments, one at the beginning of the show and one at the end, with a new "The Funhouse" joke segment in the middle that was loosely based on Laugh-In, and also contained regular segments such as Sabrina's Magic Trick and Dilton Doily's Inventions. There was a "Side Show" segment of one-liner jokes, followed by an Archies music segment.
  • Archie's Funhouse (1970–71): an expanded version of the previous series' "Funhouse" format, now featuring an audience of live action kids and the "Giant Jukebox"; a music-heavy incarnation of the series, originally padded to one hour with repeats of segments from The Archie Show.
  • Archie's TV Funnies (1971–73): Archie and the gang run a TV station, presenting a selection of cartoons within the series featuring characters from classic newspaper comic strips.
  • Everything's Archie (1973–74): repeats of previously released material.
  • The U.S. of Archie (1974–76): Archie and the gang re-interpret various events from American history.
  • The New Archie and Sabrina Hour (1977–78): new Archie and Sabrina episodes, plus repeats of earlier material. The series was then divided into two separate 30-minute shows: The Bang-Shang Lollapalooza Show (Archie) and Super Witch (Sabrina).

The New Archie and Sabrina Hour was subsequently divided into The Bang-Shang Lalapalooza Show and Super Witch during its original network run. While the earlier Archie programs were broadcast by CBS, the last series was on NBC.

Hero High (1981) was planned to be part of The Kid Super Power Hour with Shazam! featuring Archie and the gang as superheroes; however, this series was altered at the last minute because Filmation's rights to the "Archie" characters had expired during production and was not renewed.[16]

Spin-offs[edit]

The "individual" versions of Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Groovie Goolies are currently offered by Universal.[9]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ According to the packaged booklet from the complete series set of The Archie Show, the original film negatives for the dance (the "Drag")/song ("Hide and Seek") segment on the "Kids' Day/Jughead 'Sampson' Jones" episode were lost, and they had to be sourced from a mediocre video transfer; not even the PAL video transfers were available (many of Entertainment Rights' Region 1 in-house Filmation releases are sourced from PAL-based video transfers, including this series). This may be due to Hallmark Entertainment purposely destroying the original film rolls, the original mag audio tracks, and other archival material related to the shows back in the '90s since Hallmark's short-sighted policy only allowed the company to distribute the in-house Filmation shows outside of the United States. The dance segment before the commercial break and the Jughead short during the episode were also not transferred for unknown reasons, leaving them lost for years.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Erickson, Hal (2005). Television Cartoon Shows: An Illustrated Encyclopedia, 1949 Through 2003 (2nd ed.). McFarland & Co. pp. 90–94. ISBN 978-1476665993.
  2. ^ a b Woolery, George W. (1983). Children's Television: The First Thirty-Five Years, 1946-1981. Scarecrow Press. pp. 20-23. ISBN 0-8108-1557-5. Retrieved 14 March 2020.
  3. ^ Perlmutter, David (2018). The Encyclopedia of American Animated Television Shows. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 40–43. ISBN 978-1538103739.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Scheimer, Lou (2012). Creating The Filmation Generation. TwoMorrows Publishing. pp. 64–67, 69. ISBN 978-1-60549-044-1.
  5. ^ CD liner notes: Saturday Mornings: Cartoons’ Greatest Hits, 1995 MCA Records
  6. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1969/Top 100 Songs of 1969". musicoutfitters.com. Retrieved 30 April 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ a b "'Sesame Street' Breakthrough for New Programming". Times Daily. April 27, 1970. p. 6. Retrieved November 15, 2022.
  8. ^ "Classic Media Absorbs Subsidiaries". Home Media Magazine. May 11, 2009. Archived from the original on March 31, 2016. Retrieved 2009-05-12.
  9. ^ a b "Comcast's NBCUniversal buys DreamWorks Animation in $3.8-billion deal". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 15, 2022.
  10. ^ 2007 Interview with Lou Scheimer from The Archie Show: The Complete Series (1968) DVD, Disc 2
  11. ^ a b Lambert, David (2007-07-04). "The Archie Show - Press Release Finally Found For The Archie Show - The Complete Series". tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on 2011-05-10. Retrieved 2022-04-30.
  12. ^ a b Lambert, David (2007-12-07). "Archie's Fun House - Go to Filmation's Funhouse this March with Archie and the Gang!". tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on 2011-05-08. Retrieved 2022-04-30.
  13. ^ a b Lambert, David (2008-01-09). "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch - Filmation's 1971 Animated Series on DVD: Date, Cost & More!". tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on 2008-01-12. Retrieved 2022-04-30.
  14. ^ "Hallmark buys Filmation library". The Hollywood Reporter. 20 January 1995. p. 20.
  15. ^ Ettinger, Paul (February 15, 2007). "Bad news for Filmation fans". Film Score Monthly. Retrieved April 30, 2022.
  16. ^ Jim Hill Media: 2003-12-04[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]