Out of all of Hanna-Barbera's classic cartoon characters, none have the incredible staying power of Yogi Bear.
Introduced in 1958 as a character on The Huckleberry Hound Show, Yogi's pic-a-nic basket-stealing antics have never gone out of style, and odds are his cartoons are still in syndication on one of your local channels. Which is why it can be so surprising to learn that a revamped '90s spin-off starring Yogi helped kill America's Saturday morning cartoon tradition.
Yo Yogi! ran in NBC's Saturday morning lineup for just 19 episodes in 1991, but it had a huge impact on cartoon history. The show, which followed Yogi and his Hanna-Barbera pals as a group of crime-solving teenagers, was a ratings bomb. Older audiences were confused why Yogi had been transformed into a teen, and younger viewers didn't connect with the high school theme.
The show's signature gimmick didn't help either. The Yogi gang chased down the bad guys in Scooby-Doo style chase scenes animated in 3D. Kids could only watch the scene using special glasses included in Rice Krispies boxes, but it seems like none of them bothered to even tune in. If you didn't have the glasses handy, the scene was just a soupy mess.
But Yo Yogi!'s failure had a surprising outcome: it's the reason so many of our favorite shows went off the air...