The 80s gave us some amazing TV, especially the cartoons! Most of them were made to sell toy lines, and it worked. We loved to watch the cartoon whilst playing with our action figures or cuddly toys. Despite their popularity at the time there are some of those awesome 80s cartoons that just don’t get talked about anymore. This article is sure to give you one of those OMG I remember that moments!
1. Ulysses 31
Ulysses 31 is a French-Japanese animated television series (1981) that updates the Greek mythology of Odysseus (known as “Ulysses” in Latin) to the 31st century. The show comprised 26 half-hour episodes and was produced by DIC Audiovisuel in conjunction with anime studio TMS Entertainment. The rights to this show, like most of DIC’s other programs, are presently owned by WildBrain, through Cookie Jar Entertainment. Prior to 2006 the international distribution rights were owned by Saban International and Jetix Europe.
The plot line of the series describes the struggles of Ulysses and his crew against the divine entities that rule the universe, the ancient gods from Greek mythology. The Gods of Olympus are angered when Ulysses, commander of the giant spaceship Odyssey, kills the giant Cyclops to save a group of enslaved children, including his son. Zeus sentences Ulysses to travel the universe with his crew frozen until he finds the Kingdom of Hades, at which point his crew will be revived and he will be able to return to Earth. Along the way they encounter numerous other famous figures from Greek mythology who have been given a futuristic twist.
In the United States, the show was broadcast as a half-hour segment in the 1986 anthology series Kideo TV. The entire series is available in English in a complete DVD box set in the UK released by Contender Entertainment, and in Australia by Madman Entertainment. In the United States, one DVD entitled Ulysses 31: The Mysteries of Time was released, containing only four selected episodes.
2. Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors
Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors (French: Jayce et les Conquérants de la Lumière) is a French/Canadian animated TV show which was first broadcast on TF1 on September 9, 1985. on the block Salut les p’tits loups !, and eventually on September 16, 1985 in the United States in syndication. It was produced by DiC Audiovisuel (originally distributed for syndication by SFM Entertainment) and animated by the Japanese animation studios Sunrise, Shaft, Studio Giants, Studio Look and Swan Production. The show, which ran for 65 thirty-minute episodes, was created to support Mattel’s Wheeled Warriorstoyline. The show had an ongoing plot which was left unresolved, with no series finale.
The show featured two duelling forces. The heroes are humans called the Lightning League who drive white and silver vehicles with assorted weaponry led by a teenager named Jayce. The villains are organic plant-based creatures called the Monster Minds who travel via large green organic vines, which can grow in and across interstellar space, and sprout seeds that grow rapidly into further Monster Minds. They are led by the very first of the Monster Minds, Saw Boss.
3. Visionaries – Knights of the Magical Light
The story is set on the fictional planet of Prysmos, a futuristic society where all technology and complex machinery suddenly cease functioning, and its citizens are forced to rely on ancient magic to survive. This happens when the three suns of the planet align and their combined radiation emissions deactivates all technology on the planet, like the EMP effect of a nuclear explosion. The titular Visionaries are knights who are split into two factions: the heroic Spectral Knights and the evil Darkling Lords. Everyone who wishes to gain the usage of magic is invited to a competition by the wizard Merklynn. After surviving traps, dangerous creatures, and each other, survivors are rewarded with unique animal totems affixed to their armor chestplates; these talismans are based on the bearers’ individual attributes while allowing them to transform into their specific creatures.
Some of the knights are given staffs enchanted with various magic powers that are activated by its holder reciting a special verse. They could be used only once before they needed to be replenished in the animated series, but had unlimited use in the comic series. Characters who could not use these weapons instead had the power to infuse vehicles with magical powers, the spells for which were printed on official toy packaging but never used in either the comics or the animated series. In the Star Comics series, the female characters were given shields which operated in the same manner as the male characters’ power staffs.