Wednesday, December 28, 2011


After finding success with psychedelic live-action Saturday morning kid’s shows like H.R. PUFNSTUFF, LIDSVILLE and THE BUGALOOS and a prime time variety show starring Donny & Marie Osmond, producers Sid & Marty Krofft combined the two formats and came up with THE KROFFT SUPER SHOW, which ran on ABC from 1976 to 1978. A children’s variety hour hosted by the fictitious (and irritating) bubblegum rock band Kaptain Kool & the Kongs, this “super” show consisted of several 15-minute live-action programs that were threadbare even by Krofft standards and probably wouldn’t have flown on their own in a 30-minute timeslot. One of the more tolerable segments was ELECTRA WOMAN AND DYNA GIRL, a female knockoff of Batman and Robin done on a $1.98 budget, starring future soap opera celeb Deidre Hall and pigtailed Judy Strangis (Helen from ROOM 222) as reporters Lori and Judy, respectively, who transform into the titular super heroines and use an array of wacky gadgetry to protect humanity from such cut-rate villains as the Spider Lady (Tiffany Bolling, featured in this View-Master pack), the Genie (Sid Haig), the Empress of Evil (Claudette Nevins), the Pharoah (Peter Mark Richman), Ali Baba (Malachi Throne), King Alex (Michael Blodgett), and the Sorcerer (Strangis’ ROOM 222 co-star Michael Constantine). The Kroffts may have envisioned these spandex-clad cuties as role models for little girls, but we're willing to bet the real audience for EW & DG were their older, teen-aged brothers.

For whatever reason, ELECTRA WOMAN AND DYNA GIRL was dropped from the show at the start of the second season (along with DR. SHRINKER) to accommodate two newer segments, BIGFOOT AND WILDBOY and MAGIC MONGO. Kaptain Kool & the Kongs were replaced by the Bay City Rollers for the third season, when the show moved to NBC and was re-titled THE KROFFT SUPERSTAR HOUR. Eight episodes later the "Superstar Hour" was shortened to 30 minutes and renamed THE BAY CITY ROLLERS SHOW, but that format lasted for only five episodes before the show was axed altogether. The Krofft name wasn't seen on Saturday mornings again until five years later, when Sid & Marty tried to turn Richard Pryor into a kiddie show star (!) with PRYOR'S PLACE.

It's been a long time since we’ve done one of these View-Master entries, and unfortunately we still haven't figured out how to post any the eye-popping 3-D images. However, the booklet that was issued with the pack has been scanned for your amusement. Enjoy.

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