Part 0: How I discovered this cartoon[edit | edit source]
When it comes to CGI in cartoons, people normally think the first full on CGI cartoon was ReBoot by Mainframe Entertainment, now called Rainmaker Studios. While it may be the 1st one produced in Canada, there was actually a cartoon from France that came out earlier called Insektors. For a long time, I believed that Insektors was the first all CGI cartoon produced. I mean, it came out earlier than ReBoot, so it had to be the first for crying out loud, or at least the first for when it comes to CGI cartoons that aired on TV as VeggieTales was a direct to video series.
Then, just 2 weeks ago, I found 5 strange tapes at a thrift store under the name of Junkyard Classics. These 3 VHS tapes had 4 words on all of them, all saying "Beyond the Turbo Zone". Not just that, but they all had the dates of 1991 on them. I didn't know what to expect out of these tapes, but I thought it would be nice to see what they involve. When I went to the cashier to pay for these tapes, the cashier said that he remembered a friend of his liking the cartoon a lot back in the early 90s. He remembered it airing on some funky channel under the name of PowerTV. After all that, I went on to my home, & popped in the earliest dated tape of this cartoon.
Part 1: Tape 3/2/1991[edit | edit source]
This tape first started off with a bunch of commercials, nothing out of the ordinary really, except that there was a commercial for some weird looking lawnmower which I felt was most likely shelved. Then the show started, & I was in shock. No, it wasn't because it looked terrifying(though let's be honest, early CGI can look rather uncanny), no not that. I was shocked because everything was in CGI. All of it, not just the landscape, even the characters were in CGI. I was seriously shocked to see that there was a full on CGI cartoon that aired 3 YEARS before Insektors even came out!
The intro had a theme song that was like a mix between a triumph, & a rock song. It had a triumph melody, but it had some rock n' roll sounds to it mixed in with what I believe sounds like SID usage, which I find to be very unique for this cartoon. After the intro, it then went into the episode which was titled, "Become the Mighty Legend". It started off in a cool looking techno city. It was very alive too with people walking around minding their own business. The camera then started heading towards what I assume was a circular dome at the other side of a canyon. It then goes into the insides of that base where I felt as if we're going to see the big bad of this entire show, & indeed as I heard a really, super dark pitched laugh play before even showing who he was. Then, I saw the big baddie himself sitting on his techno chair, & yes, just about every object in this show somehow has to be at least a bit techno. The door then opens to reveal what I assume to be is flunkies. The flunkies then says his first line.
"Hey boss, we got some bad news for you!", shouts out flunkie #1.
"Yeah, some really bad news!", came flunkie #2, shaking all the way.
The big baddie then says in his evil pitch, "What is this bad news?".
Flunkie #1 then tells him that they lost the final crystal of portal power that survives, which makes their boss furious, & boy do I mean it.
"WHAT!?!? YOU ABSOLUTE IDIOTS!!! That was what I needed in order to finally be able to finish the Ultra-Tech X, which I would use to finally take over the universe, but you scundrels just had to mess up, & lose that precious crystal that I needed. Go, go get that crystal before someone else does!".
The flunkies then get to finding the crystal. Then, the scene changes to another place, this time presumably someone's house. It was a house between another house, & a small junkyard. There, we see what I think to be the main protagonist. He walks into his house very calmly with a smile on his face for peer pressure of what he could do next. Then, we he got to his room, he found something strange. "What was that strange thing?" you may be asking. Well, this strange thing was a green statue with binary code on it that translated to, "You have found the statue with the very last crystal of portal power that survives. Brake this open, & take the portal from under your bed. We'll meet you at your destination.". He was absolutely shocked to see that, but decided to maybe do it as it may mean saving the world to him. So, the crystal revealed the portal from of course under his bed, & there he met the 2 people that were waiting to meet him, Buster Blammis, the person who sent the statue to him, & Ed Spagter, the strong one of the group, all in what I believed to be a different city. The main character then introduces himself to them, thus revealing his name to be David Scruncho. Afterwards, Buster says that Ultaniux is planning to take over the universe with the Ultra Tech-X, a torture device that he has almost completed.
"Almost? What are the missing pieces?", David asks.
"That crystal you're holding is the one he's missing", Buster answers.
"Well, if that's so, then I ain't letting him get it. I won't let him take over the universe at all if that's what he wants to do!", David then replies with.
"Now that's the spirit of words, David! That's the first sign that you are the one to save mankind.", Buster claims.
"Whoa, what!? Heck yeah, I want to save a world. I already felt like things were about to go haywire, so it's about time we clean up this place from such evil.", says David.
Then it jumps back to the base of Ultraniux, where he shouts out this.
"WHAT!?!? You mean someone has already found the crystal!?".
One of the flunkies exclaim, "Yeah, boss.".
"Ohhhh, those terrible pests. You two cheapies, go get someone from the evil dimension to defeat them, & once they're defeated, we'll bet se to go with the crystal.", says the big bad.
It then goes back to our three main heroes, with David asking why Ultraniux wants to destroy the universe with Buster then saying that he wanted to do it so he can finally have the evil dimension consume all of time & space.
"Woah there, that guy is being a jerk towards the human species.".
"He is against us humans due to us being the most populated of them all, outweighing his own race by 10 billion.", exclaimed Buster.
"Dang, we really whacked him down the food chain.", said David.
Suddenly, the ground starts shaking like it's about to be chopped open. Part of the ground then becomes loose as they fall into the sewers. The sewers looked as if they hadn't been washed, nor operated for decades. Not just that, but there was very few water left inside this part of the sewers. After walking a bit to the nearest portal the crystal can identify through its arrow it projects, a giant lizard-like creature suddenly jumps at them.
"You're going down you buffoons. Now, give me the crystal!", this creature said.
"No, we'll never give you the crystal, no matter how much you try. You look too evil to trust!", said David.
"Then I'll strangle you to death, & boil you down the drain if it's the last thing I do!", shouted the creature.
The creature then attacked them as many times as he could until David does an indy ploy. He decides to take one wire, 4 batteries, & a nail along with 3 light bulbs he found at the deep end of where they were at before they drowned away. He then powered it on, & threw them into the creature's body, thus shocking him with the amount of wire coils(30,000,000 coils to be exact), batteries, & light bulbs used as well as how fast it was going. The creature's body then melted into nothing, thus leaving the trio to escape from this part of the sewers, & find the portal. Thanks to the projection of the arrow, they were easily able to track it down, & now they were at the city David lives in just near his house.
"We've done it dudes! That bugger is toast!", David yells in joy.
"Now that David, was a clever move not even I thought of.", Buster replied with.
They then go in the house as David prepares dinner for him, & the other 2 of the trio to eat. After that, the episode ends there in which made me space in the next tape.
Part 2: Tape 8/5/1991[edit | edit source]
This episode(named Icy Revenge) begins with David riding to a store called Wow! Palace, a weird name for a store. The store he goes into has a lot of knockoffs of real life brands there, & I mean a lot. I mean, it had Coldie Flakes, Fruiter Swoopers, G&G's, Cobber-Cobbo, Repsi, Boxotron 7800, etc. However though, one item interested him, a lava lamp that spells out "The crystal will tell you where to go to meet us". He then follows the crystal's arrow projection leading to the employees only door. He then decides to think that it's not in there, but the crystal then reveals that it is indeed in there.
"Guess if you gotta save a life, you sometimes have to take one too", David says, & busts open the door into the portal without triggering any alarms.
He was then sent into an extremely cold area where Buster, & Ed. This is what I believe to be the episode where he finally gets introduced. Buster claims that Ed's evil rival, Warmeat, has came back from the dead to finally defeat Ed once, & for all.
He then tells David about Warmeat's backstory. It goes like this:
"Several years go, Warmeat was part of a gang known as The Steel Hellforce Men. This gang littered places with crime all over it, & none of their actions were for any good reason. The people in the gang were Warmeat of course, Xtra Parts, Deadly Sinner, Firelock, & Avengore. They were the ones responsible for building Ultraniux's base as a way to have a place where he could plan about taking over the universe. All of them are now dead, except for Warmeat, whom of which is now a zombie, a smart zombie I should say.".
They then see a passageway to a secret underground base run by a group of scientists working to erase the effect of LSD(called Zpalko most likely for legal reasons, but I knew it was LSD when they explained the effects) from the drug itself. Unfortunately for them, Warmeat was under the base, but it took some time for him to get into the floor they were at. However though, once he gets to the floor, he jumps onto Ed, almost hitting him until David kicks him from his way. Warmeat then starts attacking them in a battle for survival.
Warmeat then said, "I was sent by Ultraniux's followers, Varkanoid, & Rezklo to destroy you all, & get the crystal! Now, BRING ME THAT CRYSTAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!".
After Ed, & Warmeat duked eachother out for 5 minutes straight, David then thinks of an idea. He throws 2 bottles of still effective LSD at Warmeat, which leads to him becoming drugged. He then starts thinking Ed was at the bottom of the cave, only to dive himself into lava.
The scientists thank David for his successful trick he had done to Warmeat saying he was a clever thinker outside the box, & afterwards the trio go to the portal led by the crystal. They were then ported to a jungle where they find a special power force that shoots beams. With that, this might be after the second episode since they don't usually do that in the second episode especially considering the date of this tape. Heck, this might be the start of season 2(where it finally stops being a straight up Mighty Max ripoff with few changes despite being made earlier, so it really isn't), but who knows? David then does a victory pose only to suddenly change scenes.
"Warmeat was DEFEATED!?" Furiously shouted Ultraniux.
"Yeah boss, he wasn't powerful enough to defeat David, & his friends", said Rezklo.
"That buffoon, now he's got the Suit of Hyper Damage, & once he has that, we must get some stronger warriors. Find someone powerful enough to the trio immediately, OR ELSE!".
"Y..y...yes sire!", said both flunkies, & off they went finding someone that was truely powerful enough to defeat the trio with the episode ending there.
Part 3: Tape 9/22/1991[edit | edit source]
The episode, titled Bound To Nowhere, starts off with David cooking up some breakfast when suddenly during the time he was eating, he gets a note from Buster saying to get the crystal, & go to Blaster Bowling Palace as well as that the crystal will tell him exactly where in that place he needs to go to in order to get to where they are. David then goes there only for the portal to be on the seat of the arcade machine for Radio Yolk. He jumps into it, & gets transported into a swamp filled with snails, frogs, & for some absolutely strange reason, a species of what seems to be a combination between a giraffe, & a beetle. With his trusty power force suit, & lucky enough to be on grass, he got into the power suit on from his pocket(for reasons unknown to me(these tapes are all I have for this series), it can be folded to a very small shape). With his pocket suit on, he tracked down for anything even remotely suspicious. He then meets Buster, & Ed at a lake of the swamp that supposedly leads to where they're heading to.
"Why you have made it just in time David. Let's go, there's no time to say anything other than someone from the evil dimension has came to destroy us, & he's looking for us way down there.", Buster said, & down down down they went into the lake to reach the tail end of it where they end up at what seems to be an entire underground city. Seriously though, what's with this show, & underground places?
This underground city was sadly covered in mud by an army of mud troopers. These mud troopers meant no good to any of them as they then set out their mud guns, & shot them down at rapid fire speeds. Fortunately, they were weak as always with armies in most cartoons, except for one that almost kicked them into quicksand. This one could teleport anywhere to just 5 inches away making it hard to defeat him. Thankfully, Ed had successfully axed him with his sword, thus killing him off.
The underground city residents, all of which were giant ants thanked them for their kind efforts to stopping them, but it wasn't over yet however as then came the leader of that army, Slick Slipper. Slick Slipper was the strongest of the baddies that I've seen so far on the show. He could teleport anywhere to just 8 feet, shoot hyper bullets at rapid fire speeds, & could run super fast. This led him being a real tricky one for the trio, but David had shot him at the heart which had him implode from reality. The underground city was now saved, & all its residents were joying over the saving. They decided to help clean off all the mud in the city, & then went back home for more adventures to come. I say, "more adventures to come" as I didn't see any single bit of defeat from Ultraniux at all. In fact, he wasn't even in the episode, nor his flunkies. It seems as if Slick Slipper met the flunkies, Varkanoid, & Rezklo in secret, but who knows?
Part 4: Conclusion[edit | edit source]
Well, I must say, that was so far, while mostly a show that feels like Mighty Max despite being made earlier, it is a good series. The characters were fleshed out, the settings had some imagination put into it, it actually had its own original concepts not in Mighty Max, it had a great atmosphere and tone, & best of all, the CGI was rather impressive for the time it came out. If anyone has anymore tapes of this series let me know, I really want to watch the whole series, & see how the show truly ends.
Oh, & let's not forget, this was truly the first full on CGI cartoon ever made. 1991 for crying out loud, 3 YEARS before Insektors. With that, it really tells me that sometimes, even the smartest of historians make wrong info. Oh, & remember to keep looking around, & if you do, you might find something truly unbelievable.