Pretty much all of the later series from Hanna Barbera included a group of snot nosed teens solving crime along with some odd sidekick. After “Scooby Doo” the company repeated the successful formula thirty times with varied results. Often times it was incredibly awful like “Jabberjaw” and sometimes it was fun like “Space Ghost.” One of the last Hanna Barbera shows to feature that awkward laugh track addition, “Captain Caveman” mixes the studios odd fixation on the stone age, with crime solving teens, and the whole “Scooby Doo” formula to create a pretty decent animated adventure show.
I remember thinking as a kid who would show up to laugh during an animated show, but I was told that the laugh tracks Hanna Barbera insisted on were just canned laughter with no actual live audience. From the Warner Archives comes the Complete Series release of “Captain Caveman” one of the more amusing of the Hanna Barbera hero gallery. The Teen Angels are a spoof of Charlie’s Angels, a trio of crime fighting girls who discover Captain Caveman. Branded “The world’s first superhero,” Captain Caveman forms a bond with the girls, and learns about the modern world. Voiced by the great Mel Blanc, Captain Caveman is a generally amusing and charming cartoon character that operates with asides to the audience about everyday life.
All the while the goofy trio of girls stumble in to crimes that they decide to solve with the help of their furry superhero friend armed with his club and his trademark cry “Captain Caaaaaaaaavemaaaaaan!” Considering all of the derivative shows from the seventies that stemmed from “Scooby Doo,” the two disc, forty episode DVD set of “Captain Caveman” is a generally entertaining and amusing little relic that is worth a watch. It’s plainly influenced by “Scooby Doo” but is still a very funny and raucous concept that makes for a fun time killer. Captain Caveman is so much more entertaining than his other Scooby Doo clones, and it’s a shame he never blossomed beyond being featured in episodes of “The Flintstones Kids.”