The Archie Show
The Archie Show (also known as The Archies) is an American animated musical comedy series produced by Filmation for CBS. Based on the Archie Comics, created by Bob Montana in 1941, The Archie Show aired Saturday mornings on CBS from September 1968 to August 1969, when it was replaced by an hour-long version, The Archie Comedy Hour. Filmation continued to produce further Archie television series until 1978.
|The Archie Show|
|Created by||John Goldwater (comic)|
Bob Montana (character designs)
|Directed by||Hal Sutherland|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||17 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||30 mins. (With commercials)|
20-22 mins. (DVD Release)
|Distributor||Vitt Media International|
|Original release||September 14, 1968 –|
January 4, 1969
|Followed by||The Archie Comedy Hour|
The show revolves around 17-year-old Archie Andrews and his teen-age pals from Riverdale High School including: his best friend and food fiend Jughead Jones, wise-cracking Reggie Mantle, beautiful, spoiled-rich girl Veronica Lodge, and attractive, blonde, girl-next-door tomboy Betty Cooper. On the show, the friends appeared as a bubblegum pop band featuring Archie on lead guitar. The Archies had a real-life #1 hit single in 1969 with their song, "Sugar, Sugar", written by Jeff Barry and Andy Kim.
The Archie Show utilized a laugh track, the first such example of the colloquially-titled Saturday morning cartoons. Owing to the success of The Archie Show, most animated series would begin using laugh tracks until the early 1980s. Previous animated series that used laugh tracks, such as The Flintstones and The Jetsons, were broadcast during prime time with the target audience being adults.
A typical episode started with the first Archie story, introduced by Archie and occasionally a different character. Next was a "dance of the week" segment starting with a teaser, then after the commercial break Archie introduced the dance, followed by the song of the week performed by The Archies. After that was a short joke followed by the second Archie story. All 17 episodes were presented in this format.
- Dallas McKennon – Archie Andrews, Hot Dog, Mr. Weatherbee, Pop Tate, Mr. Lodge, Coach Kleats
- Jane Webb – Betty Cooper, Veronica Lodge, Miss Grundy, Big Ethel
- John Erwin – Reggie Mantle
- Howard Morris – Big Moose Mason, Jughead Jones, Dilton Doiley
- Ron Dante – The singing voice of Archie
- Toni Wine – The singing voices of Betty and Veronica
|Title||Original air date|
|"Episode One"||September 14, 1968|
|"Episode Two"||September 21, 1968|
|"Episode Three"||September 28, 1968|
|"Episode Four"||October 5, 1968|
|"Episode Five"||October 12, 1968|
|"Episode Six"||October 19, 1968|
|"Episode Seven"||October 26, 1968|
|"Episode Eight"||November 2, 1968|
|"Episode Nine"||November 9, 1968|
|"Episode Ten"||November 16, 1968|
|"Episode Eleven"||November 23, 1968|
|"Episode Twelve"||November 30, 1968|
|"Episode Thirteen"||December 6, 1968|
|"Episode Fourteen"||December 13, 1968|
|"Episode Fifteen"||December 20, 1968|
|"Episode Sixteen"||December 27, 1968|
|"Episode Seventeen"||January 4, 1969|
The franchise's most notable effort was the music element in the form of the animated band, The Archies. With vocals provided by Ron Dante and Toni Wine, the fictional group released a series of real-life albums and singles. Their most successful song is "Sugar, Sugar", which stood at the top of the pop charts for four weeks in 1969. "Sugar, Sugar" became the number 1 song of 1969 on the Billboard charts. (There are also many songs, however, that only appeared on the show and its various spin-offs.)
- The Archie Show (1968–69)
- Archie and His New Pals (TV special; 1969): Big Moose and Reggie compete against each other for Class President; Sabrina is introduced as a new Riverdale High student.
- The Archie Comedy Hour (1969–70): all new material, now in an hour-long format, contains two Sabrina segments, one at the start of the show, and one at the end, with a new "The Funhouse" joke segment in the middle that is loosely based on Laugh-In, and contains regular segments such as Sabrina's Magic Trick and Dilton Doily's Inventions. There was a "Side Show" segment of one-liner jokes, followed by an Archies music segment.
- Archie's Funhouse (1970–71): expanded version of the previous season's "Funhouse" format, now featuring an audience of live-action kids and the "Giant Jukebox"; a music-heavy incarnation of the series, originally padded to one hour with repeats of The Archie Show segments.
- Archie's TV Funnies (1971–73): Archie and the gang run a TV station, presenting a selection of cartoons featuring characters from classic comic strips.
- Everything's Archie (1973–74): repeats of previously released material.
- The U.S. of Archie (1974–76): Archie and the gang interpret various events from American history.
- The New Archie and Sabrina Hour (1977–78): new Archie and Sabrina episodes plus repeats of earlier material. The series was divided into two separate 30-minute shows: The Bang-Shang Lollapalooza Show (Archie) and Super Witch (Sabrina).
- Hero High (1981): part of The Kid Super Power Hour with Shazam! was to have featured Archie and the gang as superheroes; however, this series was altered at the last minute because Filmation's rights to the "Archie" characters had expired during production and was not renewed.
The New Archie and Sabrina Hour was subsequently divided into The Bang-Shang Lalapalooza Show and Super Witch during its original network run. While the earlier Archie programs were broadcast by CBS, these last two series were on NBC. It was later repeated in syndication, and on The Family Channel in a half-hour format as The Archie and Sabrina Surprise Package; this is the version offered by Universal Television, the current rightsholder for most Filmation programs, including The Archies franchise; a previous rightsholder, Entertainment Rights, was acquired by Classic Media in 2009, followed by DreamWorks Animation's purchase of Classic Media in 2012.
Most episodes from all of these series were syndicated in 1976 as The Archies (excluding material produced for The New Archie and Sabrina Hour, which did not debut until a year later). The music segments from "Comedy Hour" were missing in this syndication package, for unknown reasons.
In 2010, the show began airing on Retro Television Network.
Single-disc DVD compilations featuring four episodes each were released in 2004. There were four volumes in all:
- Archie & Friends Featuring The Archie Show includes three episodes of The Archie Show (#9, #3 and #5 as per Genius Entertainment's Complete Series DVD set; #9 has the song and dance segments substituted from #16). Also included is one episode of U.S. Of Archie ("The Star Spangled Banner") and a segment from The Archie Comedy Hour (from show #1, "Coke Machine," as per the Genius Entertainment Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series DVD set).
- Archie & Friends Featuring Sabrina The Teenage Witch includes three Sabrina half-hours ("Pet Shop"/"Funny Bunny," "Blue Whale"/"Football Game," and "Frankie"/"Beached"), one episode of U.S. Of Archie ("The Day Of The Ladies") and a segment from The Archie Comedy Hour ("Shadow Boxing" from show #1 as per Genius Entertainment's Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series DVD set).
- Archie & Friends Featuring Archie's TV Funnies includes three episodes of Archie's TV Funnies ("Riverdale Grand Prix Auto Race," "The Riverdale Air Circus," and "The Ghost Of Swedlow Swamp"), one episode of U.S. Of Archie ("The Wright Brothers"), and a segment from The Archie Comedy Hour ("Jughead Pulls Fire Hose" from show #3 as per Genius Entertainment's Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series DVD set).
- Archie & Friends Featuring Archie's Classic Cartoons includes one episode each of The Archie Show ("Rocket Rock"/"Par One"), The Archie And Sabrina Surprise Package ("Tops In Cops"), Archie's TV Funnies ("Flying Saucer"), U.S. Of Archie ("The Roughrider"), and a segment from The Archie Comedy Hour ("Telephone" from show #6 as per Genius Entertainment's Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series DVD set).
On July 31, 2007, Genius Products released The Archie Show on DVD in Region 1 for the first time. According to the packaged booklet, the negatives for the dance (the "Drag")/song ("Hide and Seek") segment on the "Kids' Day/Jughead 'Sampson' Jones" episode were lost and had to be sourced from a mediocre video transfer; not even the PAL video transfers were available (many of Entertainment Rights' Region 1 Filmation releases are sourced from PAL-based video transfers, including this series). The video transfer is NTSC-based. In addition, the introduction to the dance segment which occurs before going to the commercial is also lost, along with the "joke" segment featured between the weekly song and second Archie story.
On March 4, 2008, Genius Products released Archie's Funhouse on DVD in Region 1 for the first time. Unlike the previous release however, there is no packaged booklet, and thus there is no additional information other than the bonus features contained on the discs. Additionally, while the original negatives for the "Sugar, Sugar" video were found, the "Jingle Jangle" video was sourced from an NTSC-based video transfer (however, the negatives were recovered for two episodes of the show: episodes 15 and 16; all other episodes [including the "Funhouse" segments from The Archie Comedy Hour] were sourced from the PAL video masters). The 16 episodes themselves are presented in re-edited half-hour formats. Missing are brief bumpers and repeated segments from The Archie Show, already released in their own collection. The set also includes the TV special Archie And His New Pals and seven compilation episodes culled from The Archie Comedy Hour (but featuring the Archie's Funhouse opening and closing titles). The seven compilation episodes account for the "Funhouse" and "Side Show" segments from 14 episodes of The Archie Comedy Hour. No other music segments from that season (apart from "Sugar, Sugar," "Jingle Jangle," and a performance of "Get On The Line" from Archie And His New Pals) are included. This leaves two original episodes of The Archie Comedy Hour unrepresented altogether; that season's original opening, closing and bumpers are also absent. Genius Entertainment released the Sabrina The Teenage Witch segments from that season on DVD as part of their own set on April 29, 2008.
|DVD Name||Ep #||Release Date|
|The Archie Show: The Complete Series||17||July 31, 2007|
|Archie's Funhouse: The Complete Series||16||March 4, 2008|
|Sabrina, the Teenage Witch – The Complete Animated Series||31||April 29, 2008|
Hal Erickson, author of Television Cartoon Shows, An Illustrated Encyclopedia described The Archie Show as "not what one could call inspired." Erickson criticized the humor that was described as "executed in a fragmented fashion" and "made doubly obvious by the overuse of a canned laughtrack."
- Sabrina and the Groovie Goolies (1970): repeats of Sabrina plus the Groovie Goolies.
- Sabrina the Teenage Witch (1970–1974): rebroadcasts of The Archie Comedy Hour episodes, plus new episodes in its own dedicated timeslot.
- Groovie Goolies (1970): rebroadcast of the previous series in its own timeslot.
- Super Witch (1977): originally part of the aforementioned The New Archie and Sabrina Hour.
- The Groovie Goolies and Friends (1978): syndication package also featuring episodes from other Filmation series.
The "individual" versions of Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Groovie Goolies (both first seen in 1971) are currently offered by present owner DreamWorks Classics.
- CD liner notes: Saturday Mornings: Cartoons’ Greatest Hits, 1995 MCA Records
- 2007 Interview with Lou Scheimer from The Archie Show: The Complete Series (1968) DVD, Disc 2
- Erickson, 2005. p.92
- Lead singer Ron Dante and the songwriters of "Sugar Sugar", Andy Kim and Jeff Barry have verified that "Sugar, Sugar" was always meant for The Archies.
- Jim Hill Media: 2003-12-04[permanent dead link]
- "tvshowsondvd.com". tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on 2011-05-08. Retrieved 2010-12-27.
- Erickson, 2005. p.93