Growing up in the late 1950s and early 1960s, my favorite time of the week was Saturday morning. I enjoyed a variety of cartoon and live-action shows such as Sky King, Fury, Leonardo the Lion, Howdy Doody, Texas Rangers, and especially "Ruff and Reddy."
My keenest memory of this was the premiere on the Saturday morning right after I had my tonsils out. What a pleasant surprise just when I needed a lift, to see this great animated adventure show of a cat and dog drawn in to an adventure in the planet of robots called "Muni-Mula" which is aluminum spelled backwards. The evil leader, who literally would spin his head around between a kind face who would welcome you and the mean face that threatened you, was out to conquer the universe starting with Earth with his army of robots. The robots whizzing after our heroes on one wheel sometimes caught them, but in the end Ruff and Reddy managed to destroy the robot manufacturing assembly line and escape this planet just before it blows up. Hmm, come to think of it, I wonder if the authors of the film "Independence Day" might just have seen this show when they were little.
Ruff and Reddy beat all the bad guys, including the Pirate Captain Greedy. There was one villian who fired missiles from inside a barn that opened up. This was, of course, during the Cold War just after the Russians launched Sputnik.
My friends and I enjoyed many play adventures based on the Ruff and Reddy Episodes, and we also played World War II Marines and sometimes imagined World War III, especially on those Friday Afternoons when they tested the air raid sirens. The Cold War was a very real part of life, but we made the best out of it.
And yes, I did see the movie "Thirteen Days" and yes, we really did come that close.
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