Wolf Rock TV (lost animated series; 1984)
|Wolfman Jack, the title character, and sidekick parrot Bopper|
Wolf Rock TV was an animated series produced by Dick Clark and originally broadcast in 1984 on ABC.
It starred famed radio DJ "Wolfman Jack" (real name: Robert Weston Smith) as a fictionalized cartoon version of himself.
In the show, he would host a rock music TV program with three teenagers, Sarah, Sunny and Ricardo, while playing some real live action music videos. A parrot named Bopper also appeared as their pet (and likely comic relief). They had a manager, Mr. Morris, who would show dislike towards the kind of music Jack showcases.
A segment was Wolf Rock News and another was The Rock N' Roll Museum with live-action interviews.
Only seven episodes were aired before it was cancelled as it received bad ratings. These episodes include:
- 1- "The Video Nappers"
- 2- "Bad News Birds"
- 3- "Bopper Goes Ape"
- 4- "The Nerds Who Fell to Earth"
- 5- "No Time for Sarge"
- 6- "Rockin' Robot"
- 7- "Wolfman's Granny"
It is likely more episodes were already produced beforehand (probably around 13), but no information on them has surfaced to confirm whether or not this is true.
The series was reaired in 1989 with the other animated series Kidd Video (also music-themed, featuring teen heroes and live action music videos) in a segment known as "The Wolf Rock Power Hour". While Kidd Video’s episodes survive on unlicensed VHS recordings, there are no known viewable copies of full Wolf Rock TV episodes.
It is very unlikely that the series would ever come out on DVD, due to the great number of music/music videos used in the episodes that would be very expensive to license (the same problem that happened with Kidd Video).
Several animation cels have popped out on websites such as Ebay or The Deep Archives. At least one of them has come out from the Van Eaton Galleries, in California.
Some merchandise from the time, such as stickers, coloring books and watches have also been noticed.
In a 2013 Dragon Con interview, famous voice actor Maurice LaMarche revealed that he did voice work for one episode of Wolf Rock TV, but didn't give more information on the subject.
A VHS recording of ABC's Saturday Morning Preview Park (dated September 7th 1984) has surfaced on YouTube, starring "Weird Al" Yankovic with two actors in full-body suits impersonating Scrappy-Doo and Scooby-Doo. The three characters are at the "Knott's Berry Farm" theme park while talking about three upcoming animated series: Turbo Teen, Dragon's Lair and Wolf Rock TV. A very short preview of each is given at first and then Yankovic, accompanied by the dogs, visits a ride that is theme-related to the cartoon (bumper cars for Turbo Teen and a cave that hides a fire-breathing dragon for Dragon's Lair) while more details about each show is given. However, the available VHS recording stops while the "dragon cave" skit ends, and the uploader claims this is the only part he has.
The short preview of Wolf Rock TV shows a dancing young man, Wolfman Jack in an extreme close-up and Hopper breakdancing and described by the voice-over as "hip-talking and moondancing" with no mention of the other characters.
In January 2017, Lost Media Wiki user Cyber Bishop got his hands on a 30-year-old cassette tape that contains a recording of the cartoon's theme song.
Despite the tape's age, Cyber Bishop has managed to record the audio from the tape and has subsequently uploaded it to YouTube. Many thanks to him!