Rocky and His Friends (TV Series 1959–1961) Poster

(1959–1961)

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take a trip in the way-back machine
movieman_kev5 October 2005
I watched this all the time as a kid (reruns of course, I'm getting old, but I'm not THAT old) I loved laughing at Bullwinkle and his trusty friend Rocky, always wondering what would happen next. I got a kick out of the fractured Fairy Tales as well. But I think my favorite part of the show would have to be the Mr. Peabody segments. Even as a kid I loved anything to do with time travel so Peabody and Sherman's adventures in the Way-back machine thrilled me to no end. I'm so glad that the episodes are now on DVD so I can introduce my niece to them and not subject her to the awfully lame brain-rotting cartoons of today.

My Grade: B+
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10/10
Bugs was clever .. this was brilliant!
A_Different_Drummer9 November 2013
Huge irony, as animation (aided by computers) is being re-discovered in the present, that the highest compliment one can pay to an animated feature in our current age is to say that "the market is kids, but adults will find things in the script to enjoy also." Folks, here is big revelation. That trick is not new. In fact, the producers of this ground-breaking series, Jay Ward and Bill Scott, not only invented that approach, they virtually patented it. The segments, especially the poetry, fractured fairy tales, and trips back in history, had puns within puns within puns. And, of course, puns only work if you already know the answer, so in effect this series was written by adults, for adults, and, in order to bring home a paycheck, I am sure these guys had to console themselves with the inevitable truth that the vast majority of their audience would, unfortunately, be children. (But, through the magic of DVD, streaming video and God-knows-what-new-media will arrive in the decades to come, adults can finally get a chance to match wits with the writers of this half-century old show.) And the casting? William Conrad was a "force" in Hollywood in those days, directing behind the scenes, doing voice-overs, and ultimately had his own show (Cannon). Horton had one of the most distinctive voices in the history of TV, with a pitch un-matched even to the present. And Hans Conried actually appeared on talk shows of the era to show how many different voices he could do. Even the intros to the commercials were unique and ahead of their time -- "SAY ROCKY WATCH ME PULL A RABBIT OUT OF A HAT!" Defines the word "classic."
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"Hey, Rocky!" or "Hat Tricks Aren't Necessarily Hockey"
ccook4516 January 2005
Rocky and Bullwinkle is "Must See TV" today as it was for me when I was four years old. Back then, the story lines went over my head, but the star characters were so strong, their personalities so vivid that they have stood the test of time while many of their contemporaries and those that followed have languished in obscurity.

Looking back at the very onset of the show with the Adventures Of Rocky & Bullwinkle DVD set, the show seemed to attempt to find itself both from a story nature and the art (Rocky's appearance changes quite drastically between episodes seven and eight of the "Rocket Fuel" serial and again between episodes five and six of "Box Top Robbery"), but once the show found itself deservedly attracting a grown-up audience, the story writers let it all hang out. Pop culture wasn't the target of the show, it was culture of all persuasions. It came fast and furious and that's what made the show so funny. Consider the following from the "Treasure Of Monte Zoom" serial, when Boris Badenov sets fire to a bridge:

Bullwinkle: "This is an ethical dilemma fraught with portents!"

Rocky: "What does that mean?"

Bullwinkle: "I dunno...I heard it on 'Meet The Press'."

Rocky and Bullwinkle has shown that brilliant writing and terrific heroic characters can offset the low-budget animation, and that heroes that can thrill us and make us laugh will have a spot in our hearts for life.
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10/10
Four decades later, this is still a winner
corner-222 July 2006
As a kid, I wasn't a big fan of the Saturday morning kid shows, even though I was a TV addict. But then I discovered "Rocky and His Friends". What a difference! Clever, witty plots and dialog - even the episode titles were hilarious. Then some network executive with brains and imagination (a rare breed) apparently noticed that some of the jokes were going over the heads of the kids, and adults would enjoy them more. Theshow moved to a different network and to a Sunday evening time slot, so the whole family could watch. The format changed slightly, and the title became "The Bullwinkle Show." But the wit remained, and the show became a long-running success.

Now, more than four decades later, the show has held up very well. It is still funny, still full of surprises. And the humor is still far above the level of most of the comedy shows on TV (live or animated).

As a teenager, I thought I understood the humor in the name of the villain Boris Badinov (bad enough, get it?) It took me another fifteen years to realize that it is also a pun on the name of the Russian opera Boris Gudinov. I wonder how long it will take before I get ALL the plays on words in all the episodes.

By the way, fans of this show should look out for "Sheep in the Big City", which, though by no means a copy, is obviously inspired by Rocky and Bullwinkle.
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Classic Parody
Sargebri26 October 2004
Long before Bart, Homer and the rest of the Simpsons came along; this show revolutionized animated cartoons and showed that cartoons could not only be entertaining, but could also provide a great deal of social satire. This was definitely the crowning achievement of Jay Ward and his troop of actors and writers. This also was the first cartoon series that could appeal to both adults and children. It appealed to children because its two titular stars were a couple of fuzzy animals and the adults were able to get into it because of the fact that it provided a great deal of social and political satire that they could relate to, especially in the dark days of the Cold War. Also, the supporting features (Peabody and Sherman, Fractured Fairy Tales and Aesop and Son) all helped make this one of the most entertaining and influential cartoon series ever.
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Precursor to The Bullwinkle Show
briankistler2 October 2000
Who would have ever thought, when this show came out, in 1959, that between this cartoon, and its successor, The Bullwinkle Show, that these cartoon characters would have five years of episodes?......kind of modelled in the old radio episodic format, I would say.

I wonder if Jay Ward would have also been surprised that his creation had lasted that long. He had done Crusader Rabbit, back in 1949---TV's first animated show ever----but certainly that cartoon could not hold a candle to this one.

From what I have read, there were no other cartoon TV series, up until this point, which had lasted 5 years (shortly AFTER this series began, The Flintstones ran 6 years---1960-1966). After Rocky, Bullwinkle (and Hanna Barbera's Flinstones) I think that it was EXTREMELY RARE that any animated series lasted 5 or more years......Until The Simpsons came along!.....

The story that I have read, as to why Jay Ward switched the name, from Rocky and His Friends, to The Bullwinkle Show, is very simple. In 1961 the show switched networks. The new station would only pick the series up if Ward renamed it The Bullwinkle Show (for what reason, I will never know). The rest is history......
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10/10
no matter what you call it...
lee_eisenberg26 May 2007
No matter what you call it - "Rocky and His Friends", "The Bullwinkle Show", "Rocky and Bullwinkle", or something else - you can't deny how great this show is. A total parody of the Cold War, they hit everything right on the mark.

Equally as great as the parts where Rocket J. Squirrel and Bullwinkle J. Moose battle the evil-and-proud-of-it Soviet spies Boris Badenov and Natasha Fatale, are the Fractured Fairy Tales (narrated by Edward Everett Horton), Mr. Peabody's Improbable History, and Dudley Do-Right. Whether Prince Charming turns Sleeping Beauty into a circus attraction, Galileo needs help with a scientific experiment, or whichever dastardly scheme Snidely Whiplash is plotting, it's one of the greatest shows of all time. The "Simpsons" of its era, if I may say so.

So, June Foray has every reason to be proud of her work on this. I'll always love it. I never saw the 2000 movie, but every review said that it sucked.
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10/10
One of the best and most revolutionary cartoons of all time
TheLittleSongbird28 December 2011
I also love The Bullwinkle Show as well as the superb Rocky and His Friends. The animation is some primitive moments but also a number of appealing ones too. The story lines may go over the heads of some younger viewers, but I always found them entertaining and interesting, especially the Peabody segments. The characters are incredibly strong with some of the most vivid personalities of any cartoon characters in the history of cartoons, and the writing has such a smart and subtle satirical edge. The voice work, with veteran June Foray among the most notable, is excellent. All in all, a revolutionary cartoon yet proves itself to be much more than that. With such great characters and outstanding writing, Rocky and His Friends is one of the best animated shows I've seen. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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I love this show!!!
cheffychic12 November 2000
Hey, Rocky and Bullwinkle is the best cartoon around. Now, I am a big fan of cartoons and the first time I saw Rocky and Bullwinkle, I had to watch more and more. It is such a corny show, yet, it is so funny to watch. Bullwinkle, lights it up, with his dimwittedness and dumb punch lines. I love the other segments of the show like Aesop and Son, Fractured Fairy Tales and the "infamoose" Dudley DoRight. This is classic, and frankly, I don't think there will be another show quite like it. "Now, here's something you'll really like!" (P.S. the only disappointment of R&B history, if you haven't seen it, I warn you, you'll waste your time and money).
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10/10
A cartoon for smart adults...and, smart children! :D
gilligan196525 January 2015
Warning: Spoilers
I must be getting irritable in my old age of 49; and, with an inquisitive young Son who's proving me an idiot by being smarter than I...I'm seeking out old shows I used to watch as a child of his age.

Along with this great show, I can NEVER find "Jonny Quest;" "Star Trek" TOS; "The Wild Wild West;" "The Twilight Zone" Original Series, or, any "Twilight Zone" at all; "The Six Million Dollar Man;" nor, any other "CLASSIC" show on TV; even on TV-Land - the 'supposed' classic TV channel - besides "Bonanza" and "Gunsmoke." Both GREAT SHOWS!

"Rawhide"and "The Rifleman" ARE now on AMC...God Bless them!

I said..."What the heck!" And, I bought all of these great shows on DVD due to my impatience of waiting for a 'classic' TV channel to show' classic' TV shows.'

This cartoon, "Rocky and His Friends," is such an amazing, clever, and, creative cartoon! Although the cartoon graphics are simply done, they're simply-amazing! This actually adds to the ambiance of the show; and, along with its imaginative stories, crazy antics, and, clever 'twists-and-turns' in segments like "Grimm Fairy Tales;" "Peabody and Sherman;" and, my personal favorite, "Fractured Fairy Tales;" this all becomes a 'PERFECT' variety show for kids!

SPECIAL NOTE - I just love that June Foray, the lovely lady with the lovely voice of 'Rocky," is from Springfield, Massachusetts...right near where I grew up! :)

This show incorporates so much of classic prose, poetry, and, history, that, I don't believe that people nowadays can even begin to understand the jokes because they were never exposed to and don't understand the stories and histories that the jokes are poking fun at! Especially, in the US!?!? Although unimportant, does a 17 year-old in the US even know who "Goldilocks" is or was? How about "Little Red Riding Hood!?!? What about George Washington? Probably not! :(

In other words - you can't run until you can walk...and, as far as what this 'cartoon' jokes about, most people nowadays wouldn't understand the jokes that this cartoon provides because they have no prior knowledge of the classic stories and histories that are being joked about!?!? This show, even though it's a cartoon, is great...if you have a 'simple' background of 3rd grade education in 1964...which equals at the very least...an associates degree nowadays!?!?

If you have a classical, historical, and, geographical background..."Rocky and His Friends" is classically-historically-geographically background-groundbreaking; and, especially GREAT for you!

If you're a slug; or, have an associates or bachelors degree in liberal arts; or, work as a social worker; a children's therapist; a lawyer, or, a judge, in any capacity...this show, nor, any other show that views complexity of the mind or intellectuality of the soul, as a virtue...is "NOT" for you! :)
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The 50's were a strange place.
OrangieTooDope9 May 2017
Although this show has held up well for over half a century, there's no denying that it's extremely strange and probably not something that today's kids would even get.The first bizarre thing to happen is Peabody explaining how he has come to own a boy.It seems like the kind of origin story that could mess up a kid.After the first episode they make an intro for them and it shows Peabody in various places in time even though he explained in the first episode that he built the Way-Bac machine just so his boy could have a place to play.But it's weird in a good way and I love the constant recapping of the story for some reason.I was going to watch the whole first season before I reviewed this but after hearing Bullwinkle read a poem called "I Love Little Pussy", I had to get this done.Yes that's really a poem that he read.Game over, Bullwinkle wins.
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