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KABLAM! Was the first and (to the best of my knowledge) only* cartoon variety show on television. It aired on Nickelodeon from 1996 to 2000. It featured many different forms of low budget animation. The hosts of the show were Henry and June, two young, poorly drawn kids (they were made with computer graphics, but you wouldn't know it looking at them), usually getting into some predicament (Like bringing out the mail bag and discovering it is all hate mail) or just getting into an argument between each cartoon. The show would start out looking like a comic book, with Henry or June turning each page to reveal the next segment.

Action League Now!

There was an episode of Action League Now! on every episode of KABLAM!, IIRC. It was filmed in "chuckimation" and stop motion, with the animators moving (or throwing) the characters between shots. The main characters were all custom made action figures. They were:
  • The Flesh He's super strong, and super naked!
    The Flesh was a buff, surprisingly enough, naked action figure. Probably the dumbest one of the league, his strength would usually do more harm than good. "Woopsies!" He was not anatomically correct, thank god.
  • Thunder Girl She flies... like thunder!
    Thunder girl was the only real super hero of the group, but was prone to flying into ceiling fans.
  • Stinky Diver His attitude is as strong as his smell!
    He looks sort of like a scuba diver, and gets flushed down the toilet a lot. He can also shoot a harpoon, but, following suit with the rest of the league, this really never did anything. Had a problem with authority, and if I'm remembering correctly, a Cockney accent
  • Meltman With the power to... melt!
    By far the most useless, Meltman would just tag along most of the time. Has self-esteem issues.
  • The Chief
    The chief would assign the Action League various missions. Was horribly injured in almost every episode.
  • The Mayor
    The mayor was the main villain of the show. His nefarious plots were always foiled at the end of the show, regardless of however horribly the Action League screwed up.


Life with Loopy

Made in stop motion with paper cutouts, (Think South Park) this show was narrated by Larry, and told of his adventures with his little sister, Loopy. Her strange imagination made for a very bizarre show. This can't really be described, you'd have to watch it.

Sniz and Fondue

A cel-animated cartoon, Sniz and Fondue were brothers, and also rodents of some kind. Sniz was short, sported a green Mohawk, always ready to take risks, and possibly ADHD. Fondue was tall, bald under a blue chef's hat, and always concerned about the well-being of himself and his brother. On a typical episode, they would wind up in danger of some kind, loan sharks, giant scorpions, that sort of thing. One episode featured Sniz attempting to jump the house on his new motorcycle. They always wind up safe in the end, thanks to plot devices the likes of which I had never before seen, e.g. flicking the scorpion off Fondue's back, letting it land in a sandbox, complete with little girl. Don't worry, she kills it with her toy shovel.

Prometheus and Bob


The filmed record of an alien trying to teach the caveman, Bob, a variety of things, from farming to ice skating. Every attempt was a failure, either ruined by Bob's stupidity, or by the mysterious monkey that appears every episode. This is filmed in claymation, and is completely without dialog (Unless you count Prometheus' extremely distorted English).

The Offbeats


This wasn't a regular cartoon on the show, but I think it deserves to be noted here. The main characters were the Offbeats, a group of kids consisting of: Betty Anne Bongo, a not-so-talented bongo player, Tommy, a quiet kid prone to violent outbursts, Repunzil, a gentle, loving girl with long hair, August, a nerdy inventor desperate to be one of the populars, and September, August's talking dog. They would usually be made fun of by the populars, and afterwards consoled by Grubby Groo, a beatnik and the only adult on the show.



KABLAM! featured other shorts on occasion, and even the occasional music video from They Might Be Giants. I think Action League Now! was a spin off show for a short time. KABLAM! was among the last of the good shows on Nickelodeon, before it was replaced by garbage like Rocket Power, The Wild Thornberrys, and Rugrats: All Grown Up. Highly reccomended.


*Thanks to ClockworkGrue for pointing out that KABLAM! Was far from the first and only cartoon variety show.

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