Yogi Bear (1961-1962)
This is yet another Hanna-Barbera cartoon, and it is also one of the most famous and enduring, having been around since the early-60s, even if the original run wasn’t that long. This one was all about the adventures of Yogi Bear in Jellystone Park, accompanied by his friend Boo-Boo. And in the rather packed world of fictional bears (Bungle, Paddington, Pudsey, Rupert, etc.) they still managed to stand out.
Yogi was notable for wearing a hat and tie but no other clothes, an observation made by comedians for many years. He thought he was smart, and he would do anything to get some food, often going to look in people’s “pic-a-nic baskets” (as he would call them). The other main character was Ranger Smith, who once again seemed to have some difficultly with controlling what was happening in the park.
He was just like Top Cat‘s Officer Dibble, and Help! It’s The Hair Bear Bunch‘s Mr Peevly, and there really does seem to be an alarming amount of cackhandedness by authority figures in these cartoons it seems. Yogi Bear was shown in this country as long ago as the early-70s, but once again, I saw some of the various repeats on CBBC going into the 90s as a second-generation viewer.
Unlike some of the other Hanna-Barbera characters, Yogi Bear did well enough to appear in several spin-off series, comics, computer games, and so on. One of the other cartoons that he featured in was Laff-A-Lympics in the late-70s. This was where several characters alongside Yogi Bear, including Scooby-Doo and Captain Caveman, took part in competitive sporting events around the world.
His team was Yogi Yahooeys, and they would do anything that they could to succeed. It was a right menagerie of madness! I don’t think that I ever saw this myself (this was shown in this country briefly in the late-70s), but when I was going through some old things recently, I found a Laff-A-Lympics annual, and I had never preciously made the connection that this was based on a TV show.
Going on into more recent years, there was also a film made, that was a mixture of live-action and computer-generated animation, that did rather well, and must’ve won over yet another generation of younger viewers, and there was also a parody in a episode of Family Guy, and you really haven’t made it until that happens. That’s why you shouldn’t leave your food lying around if you visit the park.
One thought on “CBBC Memories – Yogi Bear.”
Hey there, i like Yogi Bear because he is (and in his own words) smarter than the average bear. His voice was provided by the late Daws Butler from 1958 until 1988, and Boo-Boo Bear and Ranger Smith’s voices also being provided by the late Don Messick (who died on 24th October 1997) and Cindy Bear who was voiced by both the late Julie Bennett from 1961 to 1988 and by the late Janet Waldo in Yogi’s First Christmas (1980).
Greg Burson also took over the voice of Yogi Bear in The New Yogi Bear Show (1988) after Daws Butler died on 18th May 1988 from a heart attack.
Also of note, there are three Yogi Bear animated films as part of the Hanna-Barbera Superstars 10 series which included Yogi’s Great Escape and Yogi Bear and the Magical Flight of the Spruce Goose (both 1987) and Yogi and the Invasion of the Space Bears (1988).
Yogi Bear and Boo-Boo Bear also appear in Casper’s First Christmas (1979) which also features other Hanna-Barbera characters including Huckleberry Hound, Snagglepuss, Quick Draw McGraw, Augie Doggy and Doggie Daddy.
There was also Yogi the Easter Bear (1994) in which it is also one of Don Messick’s final voice-acting roles of Boo-Boo Bear and Ranger Smith, respectively before Messick suffered a debilitating stroke in late September 1996 and died the following year on 24th October 1997.
Yogi and Boo-Boo also even appeared in the Flintstones episode called Swedish Visitors as well IIRC. There’s also Yogi’s Gang, Yogi’s Space Race, Galaxy Goof-Ups, Yogi’s Treasure Hunt, The New Yogi Bear Show (1988) and Yo Yogi!
Penelope Pitstop from Wacky Races also makes cameos in two episodes of Yogi’s Treasure Hunt called “Snow White and the Seven Treasure Hunters” and “Goodbye Mr Chump”, respectively.
Yogi Bear, Boo-Boo Bear, Penelope Pitstop and other Hanna-Barbera and Looney Tunes characters also even make cameos in the cameo appearances in the “Suffragette City” song in the episode of the same name of the Animaniacs (2020 revival) as well.
I wonder if The New Yogi Bear Show (1988) would have featured the 1988 Worldvision Enterprises logo at the end after the Hanna-Barbera CGI Swirling Star from 1986 with the blacked-out Taft byline? Perhaps those prints of that show which aired on Pop in the UK might have the 1987 Turner logo at the end instead?
What are your thoughts about Yogi Bear anyway?