<em>Cheapo Cartoon Man</em> <em>Cheapo Cartoon Man</em>
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Cheapo Cartoon Man

I hadn’t seen this before, but thanks to You Tube we now know that long before Robert Smigel and TV Funhouse, a short-lived British sketch comedy show The End of Part One (1979-80), also featured a parody of limited animation TV cartoons:

(Thanks, John Dredge)

  • Tom Pope

    There are not enough capital letters to expressive how AWESOME that is.

  • Chris Sobieniak

    “Cheapo Cartoon Man! But a moment ago I was exactly the same drawing only turned over on the other side…”

    There’s a lot of clever lines here! It’s interesting in noting several American cartoons that took stabs at animation like this, including Bakshi’s Mighty Mouse and Animaniacs, along with Smigel’s TV Funhouse in the 90’s, but it’s interesting to see the Brit’s got it first with this parody done still in the period those cartoons were still being churned out. I first saw this a couple years ago, but I don’t know if I ever told you guys about it then. In light of the yesterday’s releases of the “Saturday Morning Cartoons” DVD sets, there’s no better time like the present I guess to check this out!

  • Saturnome

    Didn’t expected that, a sparkle of light in the dark ages. People weren’t so hopeless back then maybe!

  • Christopher Cook

    Anybody up to start a Cheapo Cartoon Man fan club?


    I just sent it to a client who I just told I have to cut down the frame rate to stay on budget… Damn now he’s reading this!


  • That’s all it takes! Where are the all the flash animators doing eye-blinks, and brilliant observations?

  • This is great stuff ! Pretty smart take for ’79-80. . . pretty smart take for ANY time frame ! Nice find !!

  • Oscar Grillo

    I saw this cartoon when it was shown for first time on the telly. I don’t know who made it but I always believed it was done at Jerry Hibbert’s studio in London.

  • Vixie

    This reminds me of a segment I saw once on Disney’s Raw Toonage back in the 90s called Badly Animated Man. This reminds me a lot of that, although obviously this was done first. Funny stuff, both of them.

  • RDee

    That was indeed awesome, love the lamp gag.

    Does Cheapo look like Stephen Colbert to anyone else??

  • uncle wayne

    That is a TRUE riot, than Q! Reminds me, Jerry, of one night (after-hours) at the Thalia we had run a Hanna-Barbera-alike film (but not this film)….do you remember what film that was. We were just howling!!

  • David Breneman

    As someone who spent my youth watching Saturday morning cartoons in the “handoff” phase from old theatrical shorts to made-for-TV, this captures is completely. Fantastic Four, Spider Man, Fantastic Voyage, Journey to the Center of the Earth, Fantastic Somethingelse, etc.

  • Chris Sobieniak

    I Knew J.J. would LOVE this, and thanks to Grillo for suggesting what studio might have worked on this (I sorta wondered that myself). It still fascinates me somewhat that somebody across the pond got the right idea nearly 30 years ago, though I don’t know how many Americans had ever seen this since the show wasn’t shown here anyway until clips on YouTube started to happen (which is how these lost treasures get put on worldwide display).

  • vzk

    I wish it was a bit more subtle with the things it parodies.

  • Hans W.

    This little film only shows that (very) limited animation CAN be entertaining…:)

  • It’s all in the writing.

  • HA! i wonder if this is a bit of a poke at his own stuff considering he only really uses limited stuff. Obviously brought on by production costs and schedules… but how much of it could be a shot at his own productions to add some more to the layers to the whole joke.

  • Enoch Allen

    Yeah, this was some good stuff. Please excuse my limited commenting, as I was just laughing too hard to expand this substantially.

  • I think the UK take on this sort of thing will be a little different. When I grew up in the 80s/early 90s, there was certainly a lot of crap cartoons on TV, but it’s my understanding that UK TV laws about Advertising and Product Placement might have spared us from “toy cartoons”, forcing UK channels to go into the archives for animated entertainment.

  • Chris Sobieniak

    You could be right there about that, but I have the impression a lot of those ‘toy cartoons’ probably gravitated to the cable/satellite channels anyway if available (a lot of familiar 80’s American cartoons still found some place to dwell on the dials then I think).

  • As a native Brit, I was intrigued to have heard about The End of Part One coming from an interesting era of British TV comedy- the late 1970s and early 1980s provided shows like The Kenny Everett Video Show, Yes Minister and Not the Nine O’Clock News( a show in which Andrew Marshall and David Renwick, who were behind The End of Part One, later wrote for)

    According to the limited sources about the show in general (the BBC’s Comedy site, and IMDB) this was meant a spin-off version of a radio show called The Burkiss Way. The TV show featured a lot of spin-offs of shows on at the time, including Generation Game and Nationwide- there a few sketches online to view the live-action sketches too.

    Cheapo Cartoon Man is a great send up, particular of those Alex Toth action shows, like Space Ghost. I would be very interested in seeing who was the animation company, but I fear, just like this show, has been lost in the midst of time… until someone kindly finds that info and shares it with the world once more!