The Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald
|The Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald|
Animated Ronald McDonald as seen in the series.
|Written by||Andrew McElfresh|
|Directed by||John Holmquist (ep. 1)|
Jim Duffy (ep. 2)
Jeff Scott (ep. 3)
Anthony Bell (ep. 4–6)
|Starring||Jack Doepke (ep. 1–3)|
David Hussey (ep. 4–6)
Dee Bradley Baker
Jazmine A. Corona
Alex D. Linz
Kevin Michael Richardson
|Opening theme||"McDonaldland is Changing" by Pinky Villandry (ep. 1–3)|
"The Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald" by David Hussey (as Ronald McDonald) (ep. 4–6)
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||6|
|Executive producer(s)||Arlene Klasky|
|Running time||40 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Klasky Csupo|
|Original release||October 9, 1998– January 30, 2003|
The Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald is an American animated series of retail direct-to-video episodes produced by Klasky Csupo in association with the McDonald's Corporation, centering on McDonald's mascot Ronald McDonald and the gang in McDonaldland. A total of six 40-minute episodes were produced and released on VHS exclusively in participating McDonald's restaurants from October 9, 1998 to January 30, 2003.
Although the series is "free-standing", ongoing artistic influences can be inferred from the way certain characters were drawn for animation similar to the animation from fellow Klasky Csupo series Rugrats, Duckman, Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, The Wild Thornberrys, Rocket Power and As Told by Ginger. For example, the character Birdie shares certain aspects of grooming and costume with Eliza Thornberry and Lil DeVille while her pigtails are similar to Angelica Pickles (albeit brown rather than blonde) and the rendition and bearing of the Hamburglar, reminiscent of Darwin and of Chuckie Finster, may have been an influence on the design of Otto Rocket. Grimace, however has no change but his personality is similar to Chuckie Finster. Elements of early K-C "house style" are also very evident on other supporting characters like Sundae the dog and the Chicken McNuggets. Co-protagonist Tika, however, is a very normal looking human girl of color. Iam Hungry appeared in one part of the episode "Visitors from Outer Space". Also, Mayor McCheese made an appearance in the last two episodes.
A new character named Franklin was also introduced in the first episode as the son of Dr. Quizzical (a scientist who was the inventor of Hamburglar's "Quizzical Bear Call" that was seen earlier in that one episode). Tika was also included as a human sidekick to Ronald McDonald in the first and fourth episodes. In the first and sixth episodes, Ronald was seen driving a sarcastic anthropomorphic car called the McSplorer.
Mark and Bob Mothersbaugh (best known for composing Rugrats, another Klasky Csupo series) composed the music of the series while John Holmquist (who has also directed some Rugrats episodes) directed the first episode of the series. The artistic style of the series has a similar look to Rugrats and other television series including Rocket Power. The background music was recycled from the later episodes of Rugrats.
All episodes begin and end with a live-action segment (similar to The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!).
By various accounts, the titles turned out to be rather popular and individual McDonald's locations frequently ran out of VHS tapes which were sold individually for $3.49 and could be bought with a small vanilla ice cream cone or a small Diet Coke. Klasky Csupo therefore agreed to carry them for direct sale at their online gift shop which was shut down in the fall of 2005.
In 1999, a Happy Meal was released at the restaurant chain featuring Lego vehicles for children to build. The front of each vehicle had an image of one of the McDonaldland characters in the Klasky Csupo style as depicted in the series.
- Jack Doepke (ep. 1–3) and David Hussey (ep. 4–6) – Ronald McDonald
- Charlie Adler – Hamburglar, McNugget #3, McSplorer
- Pamela Adlon – McNugget #1
- Dee Bradley Baker – Sundae (voice), TV Monitor, Squirrel, Sea Monster
- Christine Cavanaugh – Birdie the Early Bird
- Jazmine A. Corona – Tika
- Jim Cummings – Announcer
- Nika Futterman – Fry Kid #3
- Paul Greenberg – Fry Kid #2
- Alex D. Linz – Franklin
- Lisa Raggio – McNugget #2
- Kevin Michael Richardson – Grimace, King Gunga (ep. 2)
- Kath Soucie – Fry Kid #1
- Verne Troyer – Sundae
- Jeff Bennett – TV Man (ep. 1), Knight #1
- Gregg Berger – Barber, Fat Man, Foodfight Walla
- Corey Burton – Bug, Mob Man #1
- David Eccles – Bear
- Bill Farmer – Knight #2, Mob Leader
- Henry Gibson – Blue Planet
- Kim Mai Guest – Kids
- Billie Hayes – One-Eyed Sally
- Bob Joles – Mayor McCheese, Mob Man #2, Knight
- Carol Kane – Org's Mom
- Maurice LaMarche – Dr. Quizzical, Burger Chef, Knight
- Jeff Lupetin – Iam Hungry
- Euan MacDonald – Simon the Loch Ness Monster
- Mona Marshall – Kids
- Drew Massey – Pip
- Julie Merrill – TV Woman
- Richard Moll – Org's Dad
- Patrick Pinney – Phantom Head
- Kevin Schoen – Phantom Head
- Phil Snyder – Professor Thaddeus J. Pinchworm, Stiles
- Warren Sroka – King Murray
- Andre Stojka – Royal Chef
- Tara Strong – Girl, Boy, Sheep
- Meshach Taylor – Pink Planet
- Tom Kenny – Elderly Man
- James Kevin Ward – Scotty
- Gedde Watanabe – Karate Master
- Bruce Weitz – Blather
- Julian West – Dad, Police Officer
- Carl W. Wolfe – Org
|No.||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date|
|1||"Scared Silly"||John Holmquist||Andrew McElfresh and Michael Bloom||October 9, 1998|
Ronald and his friends go on a camping trip in the Far-Flung Forest where Ronald discovers an old house which he assumes is haunted by a ghost called the Far-Flung Phantom. The campers are forced to stay in the old house due to the stormy weather where a holographic head named Franklin leads them through a challenging game which will eventually help them to escape. Tika, Hamburglar, and Birdie fail each riddle leaving only Ronald, Grimace, and Sundae to solve the final one, which they do. The holographic head turns out to be a child named Franklin programming the game with help from Tika (who wanted to give Ronald a challenge) and the McNuggets in a lab room. After Ronald gets a "You Win" out of Franklin, the scientist Dr. Quizzical returns to catch his son Franklin in the act and releases the others from their traps. Upon the group officially meeting Dr. Quizzical, he stated that he had to leave the lecture when he saw lightning on the mountain and that Franklin has done something like this before. Franklin apologizes to Ronald for his actions and is allowed to join their camping trip.Note: This is the first episode to use the 1998 Klasky-Csupo logo.
|2||"The Legend of Grimace Island"||Jim Duffy||Mark Zaslove and Eryk Casemiro||January 22, 1999|
|Ronald and the gang go out on a journey to Grimace Island where Grimace's species are discovered after Grimace receives a letter which was actually written by the pirate captain One-Eyed Sally and her first mate Blather, resulting in the two pirates following them to capture the treasure on the island.|
|3||"The Visitors from Outer Space"||Jeff Scott||David Regal||April 23, 1999|
Hamburglar tricks the gang to believe that aliens have come to Earth so he can steal the McDonaldland hamburgers which destroys his relationship with the gang. Later, Hamburglar gets captured by real aliens resulting in Ronald and his friends going on a mission to rescue him even though they were angry at him for his prank.Note: Ronald and Sundae go down the ball pit slide for the last time, as this is the last episode to have the original introduction and closing. It is also the last episode where Sundae appears in the live-action segments. Prior to this episode there was a Rugrats episode with the same title.
|4||"Birthday World"||Anthony Bell||David Regal|
Additional Material by: Emily Kapnek and Eryk Casemiro
|March 30, 2001|
Hamburglar is upset that he didn't get Ronald a birthday present until an evil scientist named Professor Thaddeus J. Pinchworm gives him tickets to a fake amusement park called Birthday World. During their visit Ronald and his friends no longer fall for the rides' poor designs and construction until they ride a rollercoaster which turns them into babies.Note: A new opening sequence was made for this episode and the next two. As a result Sundae no longer appears in the live-action segments and is not seen going down the ball pit slide.
|5||"Have Time, Will Travel"||Anthony Bell||Emily Kapnek|
Additional Material by: Eryk Casemiro and David Regal
|February 15, 2002|
|While helping Franklin clean up his father's lab, Ronald and his pals stumble across a time machine in which Hamburglar dreams up a crazy scheme to use the time machine to get out of cleaning and they end up getting lost in time. Their time travel adventures take them to prehistoric times where the time machine is nearly digested by a Tyrannosaurus and they meet their cavemen ancestors, the medieval times where they impress the crabby King Murray with a musical number to save captured Birdie, the wild west where they discover Hamburglar's ancestor Henry H. Burglar II, whom the residents mistake Hamburglar for and the disco era of the 1970s where they briefly encounter Mayor McCheese.|
|6||"The Monster O’ McDonaldland Loch"||Anthony Bell||Barbara Herndon and Jill Gorey|
Additional Material by: Eryk Casemiro and David Regal
|January 30, 2003|
The gang travels to a Scottish expedition known as Ol’ McDonaldland Loch where Sundae's cousin Scotty lives. They also come across a plot by a mad scientist named Stiles and his assistant Pip attempt to build a replica of the Loch Ness Monster in order to make money from the discovery. Birdie befriends the Loch Ness Monster named Simon who wants his existence to be kept a secret.Note: This episode was the rarest of all six as it was only released online on the Klasky Csupo site on January 30, 2003 as opposed to McDonald's store locations. The episode was titled "The Legend of Ol’ McDonaldland Loch" on most websites. It is also Christine Cavanaugh's final acting role, as it was released approximately two years after her retirement and eleven years before her death in 2014.
- Charlie Adler – Voice Director
- Barbara Wright – Casting Director
- Terry Thoren – Executive In Charge of Production
- Tracy Kramer – Executive In Charge of Production
- Glenwood Editorial, Inc. – Track Reading
- Grimsaem Animation – Overseas Production Facility
- Sunwoo Entertainment – Overseas Production Facility
- Schlosser, E. (2012). Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal. Mariner Books/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 48. ISBN 978-0-547-75033-0. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
- Scared Silly at Internet Movie Database
- The Legend of Grimace Island at Internet Movie Database
- Visitors From Outer Space at Internet Movie Database
- Birthday World at Internet Movie Database
- Have Time, Will Travel at Internet Movie Database
- The Monster O' McDonaldland Loch at Internet Movie Database