The Original Beatles Cartoons

With the Beatles-inspired Beat Bugs premiering today on Netflix, we thought it might be nice to revisit the Beatles cartoons that kids were watching some 50 years ago – namely the Saturday morning series called simply The Beatles. Each week’s show featured two cartoon shorts titled after specific Fab Four songs, which the cartoons also included.

King Features produced 39 episodes of The Beatles for ABC between 1965 and 1967. The shows were rerun in the late ‘80s, first on MTV and later on The Disney Channel. Then in the early ‘90s, the Beatles’ own Apple Corps finally gained control of The Beatles cartoons– and they haven’t been seen since.

Officially, that is. We’ve located a big bunch of episodes posted nine years ago on DailyMotion. Here, in decidedly low definition, is the final show, originally aired Oct. 21, 1967. It features “Wait” and “”I’m Only Sleeping” cartoons, plus an interstitial of audience sing-alongs (with on-screen lyrics) to “Penny Lane” and “I’m Only Sleeping”:

With the TV series history, the same King Features team proceeded to produce – this time with Apple’s involvement — the more adult, much-beloved and never-suppressed 1968 animated movie Yellow Submarine. You can rent Yellow Submarine on iTunes for $3.99 SD or $4.99 HD. Here’s the original trailer:

About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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