Next week will bring us the 237th birthday of our nation. 237 years of freedom, independence and jokes about President Washington’s wooden teeth. I can’t think of any better way of celebrating the occasion than taking a look back at The Disney Afternoon.
The Disney Afternoon evolved from three shows Disney had already been producing at the time, Adventures of The Gummi Bears, Ducktails and Chip N’ Dale Rescue Rangers.
Gummi Bears had been running for several years on NBC and ABC as a saturday morning cartoon. Ducktails and Chip N’ Dale got a similar start, but by 1989 were running in a back to back in a syndicated hour block. Even though it would not official start until a year later, stations were already calling the hour “The Disney Afternoon”. Stations would play the credits for both shows at the end of the hour, as not to disrupt the two back to back shows with credits in between.
On September 10, 1990 The Disney Afternoon official debuted at 3pm as a two hour block on independent and some FOX stations (FOX stations that carried the programing would drop it once “FOX Kids” started) across the nation.
Each year the show that aired at 3pm was removed from the lineup, and every show would move up in the lineup by 30 minutes, with a new show debuting at the end of the two hour block. At least that’s how it went until the seventh and last year for The Disney Afternoon. That year Darkwing Duck was put back into the lineup and both Goof Troop and Bonkers got the boot, Aladdin stayed at it’s 4pm time, and three different shows shared the 4:30 time.
For our Disney Afternoon week we will be concentrating on the original lineup that aired that day, one show a day. Here’s what you can expect from cheesegod next week:
Monday July 1st: Disney’s Adventures of the Gummi Bears
Tuesday July 2nd: Ducktails
Wednesday July 3rd: Chip N’ Dale Rescue Rangers
Thursday July 4th: Tale Spin
So what about other Disney Afternoon classics, such as Darkwing Duck, Goof Troop, Gargoyles and The Mighty Ducks (just kidding, no one considers The Mighty Ducks cartoon a classic. Except for a classic example of the death of The Disney Afternoon). We’ll have to get back to those in a future week.
So tune in next week to learn some stuff about the shows you use to watch between the end of school and dinner time.