Way back in kindergarten, we were asked to draw pictures about Thanksgiving. (Coincidentally, this was right before the Thanksgiving holiday.)
Most kids drew turkeys, pies, and families at tables. Some poor girl even tried drawing stuffing, and wound up with a disappointing, brown-crayoned blob for her noble efforts. Still, student output was mostly feast-related.
Not my picture, though. I drew Underdog, who was represented at the time by a balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving parade — discontinued in 1984, probably for the Winston Smith balloon. Underdog was only one among many gargantuan cartoon characters floating down Fifth Avenue… but for that wee version of myself, that balloon WAS Thanksgiving. The Super Energy Pill-popping canine was my hero.
Ladies and gentlemen, you can have your Dark Knightses and your Men of Iron. They’re amusing, I suppose, but there’s only one superhero who:
1) Speaks in rhyme. Always. (Standard pre-flying announcement: “When someone’s in trouble, I am not slow… It’s hip-hip-hip and away I go!”)
2) Has the humility to be a shoeshine boy in his secret identity, as opposed to an aloof gazillionaire. (Exception: Prince of Space.)
3) Wears a baggy, ill-fitting costume that actually makes him look dumpier than his secret identity (see 2).
4) Is a dog. (Exception: Wolverine. Kind of?… oh right, he’s a wolverine.)
5) Could defeat the dreaded Overcat.
6) Has an awesome theme song, which promises that Underdog will fight “all who rob or plunder.” See? You get both! Most superheros will battle robbers, but not many bother mopping up the plunderers too.
Speaking of that wonderful song…here’s I, Tube: UNDERDOG edition!
THE ACTUAL THEME version!
BUTTHOLE SURFERS version!
EN ESPANOL version!
BURN HOLLYWOOD, BURN! version!
DIZZY RAMBLER BAND version!
SPEBSQSA version! (about two minutes in…)
COOL TEACHER version!
IN MY ROOM version!
THERE’S A REASON FOR PUTTING STUFF ON VIDEO INSTEAD OF MP3s version!
**BONUS CONTENT!**… if for some bizarre reason you’ve made it down this far….
NOT the theme, but an equally important Underdog-related artistic endeavor!