Wacky Races was an American animated television series produced by Hanna-Barbera. The series, inspired by the 1965 slapstick comedy film The Great Race,it features 11 different cars racing against each other in various road rallies throughout North America,with each driver hoping to win the title of the ‘World’s Wackiest Racer.’ The cartoon had a large number of regular characters, with 23 people and animals spread among the 11 race cars.
Muttley, Do Something!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Drat and Double Drat
Dick Dastardly and Muttley in the Mean Machine
The villains of the series, in a purple, rocket-powered car with an abundance of concealed weapons and the ability to fly. Dastardly (voiced by Paul Winchell, in a manner that Winchell would use several years later to portray the Smurfs’ nemesis Gargamel) is an archetypal mustache-twirling villain; Muttley (voiced by Don Messick) is his trademark wheezily snickering, anthropomorphic dog henchman.
Dastardly’s rocket car was arguably the fastest car in the series, as evinced by Dastardly’s repeatedly zooming to a stunning lead from far behind. Dastardly never saw victory. He came close at least 3 times: once when he crossed the line first, and is seen to do so in the original and official footage, but a tampered replay viewed by the judges showed him cheating, and another time when he was battling with 3 other cars to finish first, but he stopped to pose for the photo finish. He also came close to winning another race, but he stopped again, this time to sign an autograph for Muttley.
This was one of several cartoon shows cancelled during the late-1960s/early-1970’s (Hanna-Barbera’s ‘Fantastic Four’ was another) due to parental protests about excessive violence in children’s programming.
The show was inspired by the film The Great Race (1965). Natalie Wood (playing Maggie DuBois) became Penelope Pitstop (even wearing the same pink racing outfit). Dick Dastardly was based on Jack Lemmon’s character Professor Fate and Dastardly’s sidekick Muttley was loosely based on Peter Falk’s Max Mean.
In the fictional world of The Smurfs, Gargamel the Evil Wizard is the sworn enemy of the Smurfs and always tries to capture them. He is the main antagonist in the show and comic books. His main goal in life is to destroy the Smurfs or to capture enough of them to create a potion to turn base matter into gold.