Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Game Time: Dragon's Lair (1984)

Cartoons based on video games were becoming quite the trend in the mid-80's. Ruby-Spears held licenses for a good number of them, lumping a few together for their first CBS entry, Saturday Supercade. Over on ABC, the studio adapted the video game Dragon's Lair for television in 1984, but it lasted just one season.

I remember the video game more than I can recall the TV show, I have to admit. I spent quite a bit of time at the local arcade, and while I never played the game, I was accustomed to the narration by voice-over vet Michael Rye (Super Friends). Rye didn't work on the TV show, however, for whatever reason. Mschwartz311 uploaded the open to YouTube:

Comic Bob Sarlatte, a frequent guest on David Letterman's talk shows during those days, both daytime and late night, was the voice behind Dirk the Daring. While the animators used the character designs created by former Disney artist Don Bluth, for some reason it just didn't translate very well on television. IIRC, Lair had the Super Friends for a lead-in, though I cannot be entirely certain of that. Well, at least it was better than a certain sentient game that was tried a year earlier....!

Rating: None. Never watched the show.


magicdog said...

Scary, but I remember both the game and this show!

i remember the game being quite revolutionary in that it was beautifully animated (GFX being what they were in the 80s arcade games) and offered alternative fates towards the hero depending on the choices the player made.

The TV show was the same concept, but it didn't work primarily because it was - stupid!

Why would someone want to watch a show in which the hero does something in a scene, ("Action A") while a narrator tells the viewer about what COULD have happened if the hero had taken "Action B"?

Unless it's a time travel episode, I'm not interested in seeing what "could have been".

hobbyfan said...

And that may have been waht doomed the show. Trying to replicate the game as a cartoon is one thing, but to insist on force-feeding the game on the audience? Pathetic.