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Corey Anders, an average California teenager, finds an unusual-looking bottle on the beach while surfing. He opens it, and a beautiful genie named Jeannie emerges. Her bumbling, corpulent sidekick genie Babu also emerges, and the two become Corey's servants. Most of the series' plots found Corey trying to live a normal teenager's life, while keeping the genies' identities secret, and teaming up with Jeannie to repair the damages caused by Babu's bungling. Written by
Marty McKee <email@example.com>
Hanna-Barbera wanted the series to have absolutely no link whatsoever to the 1960s NBC television series (save for the title character). At the time the series was produced, the studio had just spent an enormous amount of money having celebrities such as Sonny and Cher, Phyllis Diller, and the Harlem Globetrotters provide their voices for The New Scooby-Doo Movies (1972). That being said, Hanna-Barbera's budget did not allow for bringing in the likes of original cast members such as Barbara Eden, Larry Hagman or Bill Daily. Hence, the premise of I Dream of Jeannie (1965) was completely reworked for animation. See more »
Yep, that's right: our own Mark Hamill got an early gig as the voice of Corey, the teen who finds the magic bottle from which pops forth the "Jeannie" of the title in a kiddie show that doesn't manage to do as well as the original.
Cashing in on good memories of the live-action gem of '60s stalwart "I Dream of Jeannie", this cartoon take moves things into a more kiddie-like realm as Corey takes on the Major Nelson part as the lucky (?) finder of the genie bottle. The hijinks that ensue aren't really as wild as what the good Major found himself getting into, and considering the possibilities offered by animation, that's a shame.
Of course, many familiar voices lend their talents like Hastings and Messick, but they saved the big guns for the likes of Joe Besser (of Three Stooges fame) as Jeannie's bumbling assistant genie Babu who, with a "yapple-dapple", manages to make a mess out of the simplest incantation. Of course, things were set right by the end of every episode.
One more quibble - was Barbara Eden really so busy that she couldn't have lent her voice to Jeannie? Could have been magical, but....
Four stars for "Jeannie" - a genie with little magic for the kids.
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