Tom Fremgen's Blog about all things cool at

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Posted by tom on December 9, 2014 in Uncategorized with No Comments


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Hey party people, so yeah I missed last week- duho! It’s the old story, I put something off for a day, then I got superbusy! Anyway, here’s my post for this week. Showing off a little artwork and talking about some of my favorite cartoons- Hanna-Barbera’s superheroes shows!

As I’ve mentioned many times, growing up in the 70’s meant watching a lot of Hanna-Barbera and Filmation! While Filmation is my fav, H-B was many times just as great. But the one thing H-B managed to do better than Filmation, and nearly anyone else, was to create some good original superheroes. Typically, if the character wasn’t from Marvel or DC, it was crap character. But back in the 60’s, in the superhero animation boom, amidst Spider-man, the Fantastic Four, Superman, Aquaman, Batman and more; H-B managed to create some original superheroes worth watching: Space Ghost, Birdman and Mightor!

One thing weird about these three characters, and I’m not even sure H-B realized this- as I’ve never seen it mentioned before. Is that H-B created a superhero of the future (Space Ghost) and superhero of the present (Birdman) and a superhero of the past (Mightor). What unique range. One thing I think that really helped sell these characters was Alex Toth- the master comicbook artist, who H-B got to design pretty much all of there action adventure shows- post-Johnny Quest (though he did do some work on Johnny).

First off there was Space Ghost, who has one of the greatest designs for a superhero ever! Seriously, he is just perfect to look at. While I was never a fan of Jan and Jace, Space Ghost was still the best show around. That lava monster in the opening credits- awesome! For helping design Space Ghost alone, Toth could be remember forever!

Next Birdman, now while Toth did a lot of designs for the show he did NOT design Birdman. I’ve seen many people give credit to Toth, but seriously look at the model sheet (not only does it not look like one of Toth’s drawings) it’s signed Hi Mankin! Also, I’m sorry Hi, but it’s also not as strong as one of Toth’s designs (the mask is way too complex). But the whole secret agent/superhero angle is very cool. Especially in the 60’s during the height of the cold war.

Lastly, Mightor, who was designed by Alex Toth. And despite the fact that Toth hates caveman stuff, Mightor looks awesome! Interestingly enough, Mightor had two things in it that Filmation would borrow later. One, a side-kick that causes more trouble than help. Little Rok wanted to be a hero like Mightor but was usually just nuisance. Just like Bat-mite in the New Adventures of Batman and Robin. Two, by holding his club over his head Tor would become Mightor! And same club could change his pet dinosaur Tog into bigger tougher dinosaur- yet no one knew the two (or four) were the same. Just like in He-man- as Adam would hold his sword over his head and affect his pet tiger.

Anyway, here are some recent sketches I did of these guys. As you might imagine, I’d love to be able to work on them for real- but until then you just have to enjoy these.

 

Catch ya on the flipper.