Back in the 60s and 70s, when life was colorful, flashy, and a bit more naive, two brothers dominated the daring world of Saturday morning cartoons. Their names? Sid and Marty Krofft, television producers extrodinaire. They were the creators of the most imaginative, creative programming for children that was on TV.
Most of the shows produced by these brothers revolved around the basic story of a child being lost and trapped in a strange and unfamiliar world. Imagined places like Lidsville and Living Island, the farthest reaches of outer space, and a land where a sea monster could become “lost” in an alien world among humans! These were not your ordinary Saturday morning cartoons, and because of that they were loved even more. With shows like H.R. Pufnstuf, Land of the Lost, The Lost Saucer, and Sigmund and the Sea Monsters to name just a few, Sid and Marty Krofft made great contributions to “off the wall” entertainment for children and adults alike.
H.R. Pufnstuf is a show about a shipwrecked boy named Jimmy. He and his friend, a talking flute named Freddy, take a ride on a mysterious boat, which promised adventures across the sea, to kooky Living Island, home of dancing trees and singing frogs, but the boat actually belongs to a wicked witch named Wilhelmina W. Witchiepoo who wants Jimmy’s flute! Luckily, the Mayor of Living Island is a friendly and helpful dragon named H.R. Pufnstuf, who takes in Freddy and Jimmie to protect them for the evil Witchiepoo and her terrible plots.
Lidsville is about a teenage boy named Mark who falls into the hat of an evil magician named Merlo. Mark falls and falls and magically arrives in Lidsville, a land of living hats (huh?!). The vain, short-tempered, but somewhat naive villain of the show, Horatio HooDoo, flies around in his Hatamaran, blasting the good citizens of Lidsville with bolts of magic (referred to as “zapping”) and keeping them in fear, demanding that they pay him their Hat Checks. On the show Mark helps the good hats resist as he tries to find a way back home.
Sigmund and the Sea Monster is the bizarre tale of a a nice sea monster, Sigmund, who was not good at his sea monster job (scaring people), so his family throws him out of their haunted cave until he learns. But instead, Sigmund goes home with two very boys, Johnny and Scott, and moves into their room!
There a ton more amazing shows by these two “geniuses,” please do yourself and a favor and check them out on their website!