I don't know about you guys, but I love Wacky Races, the animated television series produced by Hana - Barbera. The series features 11 different cars racing against each other in various road rallies throughout North America, with each driver hoping to win the title of the "World's Wackiest Racer." Wacky Races ran on CBS from September 14, 1968, to January 4, 1969. Seventeen episodes were produced, with each episode featuring two different races.
Dick Dastardly and Muttley:
The antagonists of the series, in a purple, rocket-powered car with an abundance of concealed weapons and the ability to fly. Dastardly (voiced by Paul Winchell, in a manner that Winchell would use several years later to portray the Smurfs' nemesis Gargamel) is an archetypal mustache-twirling villain; Muttley (voiced by Don Messick) is his wheezily snickering, anthropomorphic dog henchman. Dastardly concocts plans and traps in order to maintain a lead, but most of his plans backfire, causing him to finish in last place.Because of this, Dastardly has never won a Wacky Race or even officially finished in the top three. In fact, he has only crossed the line five times: thrice in last place, once in fifth place (beating the Surplus Special) and even once in first place (but in the replay was "disqualified for stretching a point"). He is often foiled by the finishing line itself, where he makes a sprint at the end to gain the lead but whilst sneering and looking behind him at the other competitors fails to notice that parts protruding from the mean machine (often sails or rockets) are too big to get under the finish banner and he subsequently crashes into it. Dick Dastardly and Muttley would also appear in Fender Bender 500, racing against characters like Yogi Bear and Quick Draw McGraw. In this series they were actually able to pull off a win.The Mean Machine appears to have been by far the fastest vehicle, providing Dastardly with a theoretically unbeatable advantage. But in every episode, after blazing far ahead of the others, Dastardly would stop to set up various booby traps for the other racers and this would eventually cost him the race. It never seems to occur to him to race fairly even though he would presumably triumph every time.
The Slag Brothers in the Bouldermobile 1:
Professor Pat Pending in the Convert-a-Car 3:
The Red Max in the Crimson Haybailer 4:
Penelope Pitstop in the Compact Pussycat 5:
Sergeant Blast and Private Meekly in the Army Surplus Special 6:
The Ant Hill Mob in the Bulletproof Bomb 7:
Luke and Blubber Bear in the Arkansas Chuggabug 8:
Peter Perfect in the Turbo Terrific 9:
Rufus Ruffcut and Sawtooth in the Buzzwagon 10:
- The new character of Mumbly (star of the 1976 The Mumbly Cartoon Show) bears a strong resemblance to Muttley.
- The new character of Captain Caveman (star of the 1977 Captain Caveman & The Teenagels series) bears a strong resemblance to the Slag Brothers.
- In 1977, Mumbly (who, in contrast to his role as a detective on his solo series, is now depicted as a villain) and Dread Baron (who strongly resembles Dick Dastardly) became the leaders of the Really Rottens team on the Laff-A-Lympics cartoon, which featured three teams of Hanna-Barbera characters (including Mumbly's villainous "Really Rottens" team, Yogi Bear's "Yogi Yahooeys" team that consisted of many of his friends from Yogi's Gang, and Scooby Doo's "Scooby Doobies" team that included many of the crime-solving characters from that era, including Captain Caveman) competing in races and competitions around the world. However, in the Latin American version ofLaff-A-Lympics, the Dread Baron and Mumbly were credited as Dick Dastardly and Muttley.
- The 1978 series Yogi's Space Race featured Hanna-Barbera stalwarts such as Yogi Bear, Huckleberry Hound, and others racing against each other throughout outer space while fending off a tall, thin villain (Phantom Phink) and his snickering dog (Sinister Sludge).
- Dick Dastardly and Muttley returned in the 1985 series Yogi's Treasure Hunt as they competed in a treasure hunt against Yogi Bear and many of his prior "Yogi Yahooeys" teammates. Instead of driving the Mean Machine, Dastardly piloted a submarine called The SS Dirty Tricks and a World War 1 biplane in this series.
- Dread Baron and Mumbly (once again replacing Dick Dastardly and Muttley) return to antagonize Yogi and many of his "Yogi Yahooeys" teammates in the 1987 film Yogi Bear & the Magical Flight of the Spruce Goose.
- The 1990 syndicated series Wake, Rattle & Roll featured a segment called Fender Bender 500. It featured Dick Dastardly and Muttley (and a revamped "Mean Machine" that is renamed "Dirty Truckster") racing against Yogi Bear, Winsome Witch, Quick Draw McGraw, and other Hanna-Barbera stars.
- In 1991, teenage versions of Dick Dastardly and Muttley appeared on the Yo Yogi! series with Yogi Bear, Boo-Boo Bear, Cindy Bear, Snagglepuss, and Huckleberry Hound.
- In 2006, the pilot for a spin-off series titled Wacky Races Forever was produced for Cartoon Network. The series depicted the sons and daughters of the original racers competing against each other, including Parker and Piper Perfect, the children of now married Penelope Pitstop and Peter Perfect. Other characters included Dick Dastardly and Muttley (working for Mr. Viceroy), the Slag Brothers, Professor Pat Pending, and a teenage version of the Gruesome Twosome. This series was not picked up by Cartoon Network.