Sunday, June 17, 2012

Rein-Toon-ation: TaleSpin (1990)

Disney's TaleSpin is loosely based on certain characters from Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book, which Disney adapted into an animated musical in 1967. This time, Baloo is a pilot who now must answer to his new boss, Rebecca Cunningham (Sally Struthers, ex-All In The Family, Pebbles & Bamm-Bamm), who purchased Baloo's business after he'd defaulted on it due to some excessive debts.

Baloo's sidekick, Kit Cloudkicker, is a bit of a rebel, but also pretty adept at cloud surfing, and his retractable air glider has found its way into other cartoons since TaleSpin ended its run. Like, you don't suppose it was the inspiration for the much larger glider Static used on his show?

Shere Khan is rebooted here as a businessman, but the other villains of Jungle Book, like Kaa, for example, didn't make the transition into this series. Louie, on the other hand, did, as he now owns a small club that's also one of Baloo's hangouts.

Bottom line is, TaleSpin had a little bit of everything. Baloo became a father figure to Kit, who in turn is a big brother to Rebecca's daughter, Molly. All that was needed was for Baloo & Rebecca to become a serious couple (which they didn't) to finish the surrogate family.

Here's the open.

These days, Disney can't be bothered to bring this out of the vaults and put it in a more prominent slot on DisneyXD or Disney Channel. Their loss.

Rating: B.


magicdog said...

This show was up there with "Duck Tales" and "Darkwing Duck" for quality Disney children's programming. Not to mention how inventive to repurpose characters from an old Disney flick!

It's a shame Disney is keeping locked up in the vaults, as it belongs on the lineup - certainly more than some live action programming that's been seeping into cartoon channels as of late.

hobbyfan said...

And in Disney's case, it would help them preserve their own live-action shows from getting burned out from being overplayed.

When will programmers ever learn?

Scoobyfan1 said...

Frankly it's a crying shame that all of the Disney Afternoon shows are kept locked up in the company's vaults.

Showing my age here, but I grew up on those shows and I know every afternoon after school when I got home, I had to watch the Disney Afternoon shows, partly because they were all pretty cool.

hobbyfan said...

Can I get an AMEN?