Wednesday, May 1, 2024

Short Lived "Planet Of The Apes Cartoon Series" 1975

 


The "Planet of the Apes" cartoon series, based on the iconic science fiction franchise, emerged as a part of the broader cultural phenomenon sparked by the original 1968 film starring Charlton Heston. The cartoon series, titled "Return to the Planet of the Apes," aired in the United States from September to November 1975 and consisted of only thirteen episodes. Despite its short run, it left a lasting impact on fans of the franchise.

Here's a more in-depth look at the history and context surrounding the "Return to the Planet of the Apes" cartoon series:

  1. Franchise Origins: The "Planet of the Apes" franchise originated from French author Pierre Boulle's 1963 novel "La Plan├Ęte des Singes" (translated as "Planet of the Apes" in English). The success of the 1968 film adaptation, directed by Franklin J. Schaffner and starring Charlton Heston, led to a series of sequels, television adaptations, and other spin-offs.

  2. Cartoon Adaptation: "Return to the Planet of the Apes" was developed by DePatie-Freleng Enterprises, known for their work on other animated series such as "The Pink Panther" and "The Inspector." The series was produced in association with 20th Century Fox Television, which owned the rights to the film franchise.

  3. Plot: The cartoon series follows a group of astronauts who crash-land on a mysterious planet ruled by intelligent apes. The astronauts, led by Bill Hudson, find themselves in a world where humans are primitive and subjugated by their simian overlords. Throughout the series, they struggle to survive and find a way back to Earth while uncovering the mysteries of the planet.

  4. Divergence from the Films: While the cartoon series drew inspiration from the original 1968 film and its sequels, it also introduced its own narrative elements and characters. For instance, the character of Bill Hudson, the leader of the human astronauts, was a new addition not present in the original films.

  5. Animation Style: The animation style of "Return to the Planet of the Apes" was typical of Saturday morning cartoons of the era, characterized by limited animation techniques. Despite the constraints of its production budget, the series featured detailed backgrounds and character designs that captured the essence of the "Planet of the Apes" universe.

  6. Legacy: Although "Return to the Planet of the Apes" only aired for a brief period, it developed a cult following over the years, particularly among fans of the original film franchise. Its influence can be seen in subsequent adaptations and reimagining of the "Planet of the Apes" universe, including the acclaimed reboot film series starting with "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" in 2011.

Overall, "Return to the Planet of the Apes" remains a noteworthy chapter in the expansive history of the franchise, showcasing its enduring appeal and the creative possibilities it offers across different mediums.

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