From The TV IV
Wacky Races is an animated comedy that aired on CBS.
Eleven screwball drivers engage in countrywide cannonball runs to determine "the world's wackiest racer." It's catch-as-catch-can racing, with Dick Dastardly scheming week in and week out to find a way to thwart the other drivers in order to win the race himself, which he never does. Dastardly's Mean Machine obviously is of superior power to overtake the others legitimately, but as the token villain, he resorts to chicanery along with his canine sidekick Muttley.
The show was to originally have had a live game show segment prior to each race with children predicting the winner of each race. CBS nixed the idea, but Hollywood Squares producers Merrill Heatter and Bob Quigley, who were to have produced the game segment, were given on-screen credits anyway. Peggy Charren, of Action For Children's Television, blackballed the show, charging that it enticed kids to make monetary wagers on the races. It spawned two spinoffs, Dastardly and Muttley in Their Flying Machines and The Perils of Penelope Pitstop. Dastardly and Muttley would show up in three other Hanna-Barbera shows, Yogi's Treasure Hunt, "The Fender Bender 500" (segment of the syndicated Wake, Rattle and Roll), and Yo, Yogi!.
A made-for-TV animated movie, Around the World with the Wacky Racers, was proposed in 1988 as part of the Hanna-Barbera Superstars 10 series of animated movies, but it was never produced. More recently, a revival--Wacky Races Forever, featuring the sons and daughters of the original racers--had a pilot made for Cartoon Network but the pilot never aired and the show never made.
Hanna-Barbera Productions and Heatter-Quigley Productions co-produced Wacky Races. Warner Bros. Television distributes the show.
| Season || Premiere || Finale || #
| Season One || September 14, 1968 || January 4, 1969 || 17