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Jul 152015
 

There are many different villains in pop culture. Some live on to become as iconic as the heroes who fight them while others, not so much. So I put together a list of old villains from movies and TV shows that seem underrated, but still stand out as favorites of mine.

#10) Mouser from The Super Mario Bros. Super Show: Originally featured as a bomb-throwing boss from the Super Mario Bros. 2 NES game, this talking mouse often serves as King Bowser Koopa’s right hand man. Mouser is a stooge but a worthy adversary. However, he hasn’t been featured in the Super Mario Bros. franchise for a long time, among other old characters that seemed to have disappeared off the radar. I wonder why that is.

#9) The Witches from the Volcano of Gloom from My Little Pony (1986 version): They are known as Hydia and her two daughters Reeka and Draggle and come from a long line of evildoers. This trio, along with their giant spider monster Ahgg, is intent on turning the world dark, dank, and dreary and the little ponies are the only ones standing in their way. The witches were the main villains on My Little Pony the Movie (1986) and the ten-part episode The End of Flutter Valley. After that, the witches never returned. It would’ve been nice if they did but this series was not known for its consistency when it comes to villains.

#8) Hurricane Harry from Cool McCool: It does seem that the villains on this show are very similar to the ones in the Batman franchise. That’s mainly because the series was co-created by Bob Kane, the original creator of Batman. However, Hurricane Harry stands out the most. His lungs are so powerful that a single deep breath can easily affect the world’s weather. The most impressive example is when Harry shows his ability to inhale the power of the sun and spit fire like a dragon. It’s unknown how Harry acquired this power to begin with, but it is enough to overlook his lisp.

#7) Jean- Baptiste Emanuel Zorg (Gary Oldman) from The Fifth Element: Gary Oldman has had quite a few villainous roles before. Unfortunately, this was not labeled among his best. Zorg is an industrialist who believes that preserving life comes from destruction and chaos. He may come off as a lame villain at times, but don’t underestimate him. Zorg is ruthless and never likes to be disappointed by anyone. When that happens he won’t hesitate to blow you up.

#6) Mr. Freeze (Arnold Schwarzenegger) from Batman & Robin: I know this sounds strange since Mr. Freeze is a popular Batman villain. However, this particular version is often frowned upon due to the fact that this movie was constantly mentioned as a box office flop, based on many reviews. Sure his dialogue mostly consists of ice puns but Mr. Freeze is highly skilled. He can move around smoothly in that extremely heavy suit and his freeze gun is amazing. It can encase people and objects within ice in only a matter of seconds. The special effects really blew my mind, especially when compared to the effects used in this movie’s predecessor Batman Forever. Seriously, how can you not find this interesting?

#5) Velasca (Melinda Clarke) from Xena: Warrior Princess: This amazon warrior from season 2 was the adopted daughter of Queen Melosa and intended to be queen of the Amazons. When Gabrielle was selected as heir, Velasca became incredibly jealous. Soon after, she ate ambrosia and became a goddess completely intent on killing Gabrielle. Velasca was eventually plunged into a lava pit along with Callisto, leaving the possibility that they would both return. Although Callisto did return in the third season, Velasca didn’t. There were plenty of opportunities to bring Velasca back throughout the series run but it never happened. Any ideas why?

#4) Beastur from My Pet Monster: He’s the evil master of Monster Land and always pops into the real world in his many attempts to bring Monster back with him. The confrontations are always big chases, but I always liked how Beastur keeps getting sent back to Monster Land when he’s defeated. He does have his hilarious moments too and that’s what makes Beastur so memorable.

#3) Tweeg from The Adventures of Teddy Ruxpin: It’s no surprise that this troll grunge makes this list. Although Tweeg’s biggest evil trait is his greed, many of his evil plots are focused on trying to meet the standards of MAVO (The Monsters and Villains Organization) as well as his troll mother Eleanor. Tweeg is sneaky and cunning, but even with a group of bounders serving him Tweeg always seems to fall short. He can’t even hit anything with a cannonball. Sometimes you just can’t help but feel sorry for the guy.

#2) Prince Gasket and Archerina from Power Rangers Zeo: The oldest son of King Mondo had fallen in love with the daughter of King Aragon (not featured in the series). Since their families were at war with one another, the two of them eloped. That scenario is much like in Romeo & Juliet, except that Gasket and Archerina mostly lived in hiding from their fathers. These two are both skilled fighters intent on conquering the Earth and ruling the Machine Empire. Once King Mondo caught up with them, Gasket and Archerina retreated and were never seen or heard from again. It leaves you wondering what could’ve become of this duo since they only appeared in 10 episodes out of 50.

#1) Prime Evil from Ghostbusters (1986 version): Who better to take the top spot than the Ghostbusters’ biggest archenemy. This creepy character is intent on taking over the human world and has many different ghosts and ghouls serving him. Of course, Prime Evil has his comedic moments also. He takes insults as compliments, struggles to say “Ghostbusters”, and has a hot temper when putting up with his henchmen. Unfortunately, with the other version of Ghostbusters completely overshadowing this series, Prime Evil went down with it but he’s one villain I’ll never forget.

Special Note: It wasn’t easy putting this list together since there were so many underrated villains to choose from. I was also going to include Scorpina from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers as an honorable mention, but after learning the reason behind her disappearance from voice actress Wendee Lee at Anime Festival Orlando 2011, I’m going to let that one pass.

Jun 272012
 

Like My Little Pony, Glo Friends (1986-1987) was also an animated series based on a popular toy line. These characters glow in the dark. The glow fascinated me because of how it was shown on all those commercials.

The first Glo Friends cartoon was a Christmas special fom 1985, where they had to rescue Santa Claus from Blanche the wicked witch of the North Pole. In a way, the Glo Friends are like the Smurfs. Think about it, a race of tiny creatures living at a village in the forest and having adventures in a land of fantasy.

When the Glo Friends series came along as part of My Little Pony and Friends, it went in a completely different direction. The Glo Friends rely on a life source called moon drops and have animal allies that also glow. The same hats as well as similar personalities, like Slugger and Bully Frog, match up most of them. Like the Smurfs, the Glo Friends have names based on their personas, like Doodle Bug, Book Bug, and Bashful Bug, as well as names based on what animals they are, like Glo Snail, Glo Cricket, Glo Butterfly, and Glo Grasshopper. I don’t know for sure if there are as many Glo Friends as there are Smurfs.

The Glo Friends also have archenemies called the Moligans, who want the Glo Friends as light fixtures to mine for gold.

 

One of my favorite characters was Rook the blackbird because he’s a funny impressionist. Rook started out as a leader of a gang of blackbirds, who also worked for the evil red ants. Then eventually he joined up with the Moligans. But whatever happened to those red ants and blackbirds Rook used to side with?

There are episodes when a Moligan helps the Glo Friends in a dangerous situation. Then by the next episode, they’re back to being enemies again. That used to confuse me. Which Moligans are on which side?

Like My Little Pony, this show also has its exciting points and the characters break into song, which I also think, was unnecessary. Most of the episodes are at least two-part episodes, including the ten-part pilot. I looked forward to those each day also.

I’ll tell ya, this show is an 80s classic. Though I am surprised it never came to DVD. At least not yet.

Feb 032012
 

Based on the toy line, My Little Pony (1986-1987) is filled with fantasy adventure as various talking multicolored ponies defend Pony Land from various enemies.

Each pony has a different personality, but I always had trouble identifying any of them. They all have names based on the designs on their butts. I don’t know if those designs were tattooed, or branded, or what.

There are many different types of ponies. There are Earth ponies, ponies with wings, unicorns that can teleport from place to place, sea ponies, and many others. The more the toy line expands the more types of ponies there are in Pony Land.

The little ponies also have other allies that were not merchandised like; The elf wizard Muchik, the Bushwollies, Spike the baby purple dragon, and their human friends Molly, Danny, and Megan who are all siblings. Megan leads the group and is keeper of a magic locket called the Rainbow of Light.

The adventures do get exciting at points, but it starts to die down when the characters break into song, so I don’t see a reason for it.

There are many times when the enemies become allies during the adventure. Then at the end of each adventure, the enemy leader either becomes an ally or gets destroyed. It appears more unlikely than any other adventure series I have seen. Oddly, none of the enemies turned friendly ever return in later episodes.

I remember when My Little Pony included other shows like The Potato Head Kids, Glo Friends, and The Moon Dreamers, all of which were also based on popular toy lines from the 80s.

Even if My Little Pony was meant to be a little girls show, I still found it interesting. Since most of the episodes are at least two-parters, it’s difficult to have to wait until the next day to see what happens next. Thank goodness for the DVD releases.