Who Remembers the Weird Harlem Globetrotters Cartoon from the 70s?
The world-famous Harlem Globetrotters will be at the Don Haskins Center this Saturday, April 16th. I’m not a gambling man but if I were I think I’d take the Globetrotters to cover the spread against the Washington Generals.
I mean, the Generals are fundamentally solid but it’s really hard to defend against ladders and buckets of water.
I’ve been a fan of the Globetrotters ever since I saw them as a child. Actually, I was a fan long before that since the ‘Trotters had made all KINDS of weird cameos on the cartoons and television shows of my childhood. Like the time they showed up on Gilligan’s Island:
…the time they helped Scooby-Doo and the Gang solve a spooky mystery:
…and, their funky live-action variety show:
But by far the weirdest Globetrotter project was their Saturday morning cartoon “Super Globetrotters” in which they weren’t JUST players and global ambassadors…they were also superheroes.
Responding to the emergency alerts from an orbital satellite (in the shape of a basketball) the members of the Globetrotters would transform into their super-alter egos.
Curly Neal’s power was that his head was shaped like a basketball and he could bounce all over the bad guys. Twiggy Sanders turned into “Spaghetti Man” whose limbs were like ropes. The best, though, was “Sweet” Lou Dunbar.
The real Sweet Lou had a sweet afro in real life. Cartoon-Lou had an even BIGGER afro. But Lou’s super-persona had a ginormous afro from which, and I want you to know I am absolutely NOT making this up, he could pull any kind of tool, weapon, or animal out of, as the situation warranted. Lou Dunbar’s super-power was that his hair was basically a Tardis.
In a weird little Mandela effect that I just realized, Meadowlark Lemon was NOT a character in Super Globetrotters. I would have bet ANY amount of money that Meadowlark was in this cartoon. He wasn’t but another one of the Globetrotters, Nate Branch, was voiced by Scatman Crothers. Scatman had voiced Meadowlark in a PREVIOUS Hannah-Barbera cartoon that ran in the early 70s. It’s only now becoming clear why I always thought Meadowlark Lemon sounded like Hong Kong Phooey.