For a while now I've wanted to watch old cartoons that I may have missed as a child, and present my thoughts of them here on my blog. I always figured I'd start with something in my wheel house of interest. Maybe 'Voltron', or 'Thundercats', something with a great deal of impact on geek culture... Instead I'm beginning with 'Rainbow Brite'.

Not only is 'Rainbow Brite' a girls cartoon, its a 'Hallmark' cartoon. Most cartoons in the 80's were actually half hour long commercials directed towards kids to sell toys. Rainbow Brite didn't start as a toy though, her roots were in greeting and gift cards.
Originally intended to combat the American Greetings franchise 'Strawberry Shortcake', 'Rainbow Brite' quickly found its own footing, developing a following among young girls, and people who love painfully cutesy shit.
Naturally success meant they had to expand with merchandising. Clothing, toys, live road shows, and a god damn television special, all got spewed out. Syndicated television is where I come in. There was 13 episodes of the Rainbow Brite cartoon. That's right, only 13! And thats including the television specials. But when I was searching up popular 80's cartoons, Rainbow Brite was all over the place. People loved that colourful little tart.
Being the curious guy I am, I had to check it out. I began with episodes 4-5. Since they are actually first when it comes to the continuity of 'Rainbow Brite'... Though I imagine 'Rainbow Brite' isn't exactly heavy when it comes to plot.

The story starts off terrifyingly... Not like real terrifying, but like... Disney terrifying. Its dark and gloomy, thunder echos through the land, when out of nowhere teleported to this land of darkness is Rainbow Brite.
Shes been sent there by God? I'm not sure who sends her there, but it certainly seems like God did it. Her quest is to find the sphere of light, so she can bring, “Colour and happiness” to all. She quickly realizes that not everyone in this land is interested in, “Colour and happiness”. And after a encounter with the rape trees from 'The Evil Dead', she runs into Twinky the sprite.
Question. Why do sprites/faeries and pixies always have to have such emasculating names? I'm 98% sure that Twinky is a dude. Maybe its a 'A Boy Named Sue' type situation. Like his Father wanted to toughen him up, so he named him Twinky. If that is the case, it didn't work, cause Twinky screeches in terror every second he gets.
They band together, as Rainbow Brite forces Twinky to risk his life for her, by constantly reminding him, “ITS MY QUEST!”, “BUT ITS MY QUEST TWINKY!”, “CALL QUEST TWINKY TO MEET HOT SINGLES!”

I feel like a slut for posting that... If only I was getting paid for it...

Anyway, Twinky and Rainbow, bumble through the horrors of this land without colour, and discover a bunch of frozen sprites, and a horse. Since little girls love horses, and Rainbow is a girl, shes naturally attracted to the animal.
The duo is attacked by a crazy ass vulture and for some unexplainable reason, the horse is resurrected and thawed. I'm just assuming that whenever something like this happens in Rainbow Brite God did it.
The horse of course can speak. Which surprises Rainbow. She wasn't surprised by the fuzzy sprite named after a hostess treat, or the talking trees that grabbed at her, but a talking horse? GET OUT OF HERE! Horses cant talk. That is of course, unless that horse is the famous Mr. Ed.

The horse is named Starlight and he does a better job then I could ever do describing himself. “I'm Starlight! The most wonderful Horse in the universe! Of course I can talk!”
Starlight, aside from telling us all how awesome he is all the time, informs us that Rainbow Brite needs to have the Colour Belt if she plans on defeating the evil King of Shadows and collecting the light sphere. This is where the plot gets so contrived it may as well be a video game. You have to collect this, to get this, to do this, and collect that, so you can open the door to that other thing so you can beat the final boss.
This is when we're introduced to the mandatory bumbling villain’s, Murk and Lurk. I have no idea which one is which. All I know is I like the one that looks like Snufflopicus. They are bumbling morons, who I think technically are mentally retarded. They attempt to stop the Rainbow crew but they screw it up... and by chance they stop the Rainbow crew... Huh? Yeah. They fail upward, by forcing Starlight the most awesome horse in the world, Twinky and Rainbow Brite into a river, full of piranha, towards some rapids.
It seems like they're about to A: drown, B: be smashed against rocks, or C: get eaten by fish. And after watching this episode four times now, I have to say, I'm hoping for 'all of the above' . What happens instead is they reach the shore and discover a baby wrapped in a cloth. They take this baby to a cave for shelter... This part concerns me. We have a child being taken care of by a little girl, a sprite named Twinky and a horse. It was scary enough when it was Tom Selleck, Steve Gutenberg, and Ted Danson.
Of course, the hand of god also placed the Colour belt in this random cave they chose to hide in. And thus episode four of Rainbow Brite Ends...

PART TWO




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