I really enjoy Gweek, especially your recommendations section. I’d like to offer a recommendation of my own, the Jonny Quest TV show. Jonny Quest was a half-hour prime time cartoon that came out in the early ‘60s, produced by Hanna-Barbera. Unfortunately, like so many great shows, it ran for just one season, but you can see them all in a DVD box set, iTunes, or Amazon Instant Video.
Jonny Quest is about the adventures of an 11 year old boy (Jonny), who travels around the world with his father, Dr. Benton Quest, a top government scientist assigned to solve action mysteries and defuse threats perpetrated by the evil Dr. Zin. The show is aimed at boys Jonny’s age, and it has the whole package: high-tech gadgets, villains, guns, ferocious animals, and even seductresses. There are great sidekicks too -- Dr. Quest’s commando bodyguard, Race Bannon, Jonny’s Indian friend Hadji, and their feisty bulldog Bandit. Each episode takes the Quest crew somewhere exotic and exciting, from the Egyptian pyramids to the South American Andes and even out to sea. They face every challenge imaginable: flying robots, pirates, and giant genetically engineered lizards. Naturally the Quests and their team always come out victorious and unscathed.
The show has some highlights that aren’t part of the story lines, as well. For one thing, the political incorrectness of the early 1960s really shines through. The Quests unapologetically gun down bad guys, especially troublesome natives and commies, along with any menacing animals they run into. Don’t worry though, it’s so over-the-top it’s funny rather than offensive. And the animation is wonderful. It’s bold, sharply defined, and quite realistic, bringing you into the action much more than typical kids’ style cartoons of the time, flying you by the seat of your pants.
Any aficionado of Gweek is sure to enjoy this series.
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Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the editor-in-chief of MAKE and Cool Tools. Twitter: @frauenfelder. Come and hear Mark speak at the ALA conference in Chicago on July 1.