A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this offbeat Hanna-Barbera cartoon is a hilarious snapshot of 1960s pop culture. Although it's quirky and creative, it's void of diversity and overall educational value. For a classic cartoon, the violence is mild, and the villains are far goofier than they are menacing. Still, beware of guns and explosives, even though no one is seriously hurt.
What's the story?
THE IMPOSSIBLES are a Monkees-like pop group that transforms into an unlikely team of superheroes, including Coil-Man (Hal Smith), who becomes powerful, stretchy coils; Fluid-Man (Paul Frees), who can turn to liquid; and Multi-Man (Don Messick), who creates multiples of himself. When these "secret fighters for justice" get a call from their boss, Big D., through a TV screen on Coil Man's guitar, they give the tunes a rest and set off to catch the bad guys, zooming around in their Impossicar, which morphs into a flying craft, and shouting "Rally-Ho!" as their battle cry. Their comical enemies are Fero the Fiendish Fiddler, who can crash an ocean liner with some mean music, and the Diabolical Dauber, who can turn pictures of weapons to life with a trick paintbrush. In one episode, the Perilous Paper Doll folds himself up and slips into the Pentagon to steal top-secret plans. He threatens Fluid-Man with "I'll staple you to the wall with my sonic speed stapler," but Fluid-Man simply turns to liquid to save himself.
Is it any good?
The fight scenes are silly, brief, and not especially violent. But guns are prevalent, and sometimes explosives blow up in a villain's face. And while there's great camaraderie among the group, this show doesn't pretend to impart any lessons, moral or otherwise. Gender and racial diversity are nonexistent. This is pure fun, circa 1966.
When the heroes prevail (they always do), justice is served up with a little humor. For example, when the Diabolical Dauber is caught, he is sentenced to hang…on the wall for 20 years (flash to the villain caught in a picture frame). "I've been framed!" he complains.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the nature of justice. Does the punishment (it's often quite funny) fit the crime? Kids, if you were a superhero, what unusual power would you want to have? How could that strength help you catch the bad guys? Would it be more fun to be a superhero or a rock star?
Themes & Topics
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