Fangface is a 30-minute Saturday-morning cartoon produced by Ruby-Spears Productions for ABC, which aired from September 9, 1978. to September 8, 1979. The executive producers were Joe Ruby and Ken Spears.
Highly derivative of Scooby-Doo (which was also created by Ruby and Spears) with a bit of Warner Bros.' Tasmanian Devil and I Was a Teenage Werewolf thrown in, Fangface features four teenagers: the buff, brave, independent, friendly, fearless, benevolent, intellectual, funny, feisty and handsome leader, Biff; his brainy, kind-hearted, independent, mature, knowledgeable, intelligent, merciful and beautiful dusky-skinned girlfriend, Kim; short, stocky, pompous, understanding, grouchy, good-hearted, selfless, negative, prideful, uncompromising, gruff, generous, smart, rude and pugnacious Puggsy, and tall, selfless, heroic, encouraging, rational, mature, accountable, nice, friendly, affectionate, nurturing, goofy, spineless, fearless, astute, naive, good-natured, sweet-tempered, well-behaved, observant, respectful, trustworthy and happy-go-lucky skinny simpleton Sherman "Fangs" Fangsworth (Puggsy and Fangs being based on Leo Gorcey and Huntz Hall of The Bowery Boys fame). Fangs transforms into a wildly whirling werewolf named Fangface whenever he looks at the full moon, a picture of the moon, or anything resembling the moon. Fangface has one large fang in the middle of his upper jaw which protrudes over his lower lip, and he has brown fur with tan paws, muzzle, and lupine tail tip. The four kids drive around in a sleek convertible dune buggy called the Wolf-Buggy, and catch crooks and solve crimes involving monsters and evil masterminds. Fangs sits in the back seat next to Puggsy, but as Fangface he rides on Puggsy's shoulders.
Despite the temporary difficulty of Fangface always attacking Puggsy after he first transforms, the gang never hesitates to initiate the transformation to take advantage of the werewolf's power to cope with any danger. Indeed, they often refer to Fangface as their "secret weapon", even though very few people are afraid of him. Fangface and Fangs are unaware of each other, but Fangface lives in the moment, so he never seems to question why he's suddenly in a new place, whereas Fangs is always bewildered upon reversion.
Oddly, if perhaps not surprisingly, considering how much Puggsy bullies the cowardly Fangs in his weak-willed human form, whenever Fangface sees food or hears a food word like "turkey", he eats Puggsy whole, although he doesn't chew or swallow him and just contentedly leaves him trapped in his hugely bulging chipmunk-like cheeks. The only way to get Puggsy out of Fangface's jaws is for either Biff or Kim to rub Fangface's foot, thereby calming him down and releasing Puggsy.
Another bizarre personality trait is that whenever Fangface sees his reflection in a mirror, he goes completely wild and starts to howl uncontrollably. In this feral state he only relies on instinct, usually to the detriment of Puggsy or whoever else is with him, although even this can sometimes be used to the good guy's advantage, sometimes with an addition of an order given to him, as demonstrated near the ending of "A Heap of Trouble", as well as "Dr. Lupiter and the Thing from Jupiter", "A Creep from the Deep", and "Westward Ho to the UFO".
Even though Fangs and Fangface are completely different in their personalities, they have similarities to one another. Fangs and Fangface both wear a backwards-facing orange cap, although the rest of Fangs' clothes disappear when he transforms, and both are loyal friends of Kim, Biff, and Puggsy. Fangs and Fangface also say the phrase "Ooh! Ooh!" (the trademark exclamation of Joe E. Ross) before expressing an idea, as heard in the episode "The Evil Design Of Vulture-Man's Mind".
Fangs is basically comic relief on the show, having no real use as Fangs and getting changed into Fangface when he's needed, although Fangs does show a spark of use whenever he's super scared. When he's super scared, he loses his normal dimwittedness and comes up with a super-good idea to save his super-scared neck.
Another interesting occurrence are the barrage of invented words that the character Puggsy says, such as 'scramify' and 'rescuefy' in the episode "The Ill-Will of Dr. Chill", which can be heard throughout the entire series.
In the episode "Don't Abra When You Cadabra", it is revealed that Fangs has an uncle named Arnie (rumored to be possibly the baby werewolf Fangpuss's father) and that he runs a video arcade in New York City called Arnie's Arcade.
During Season 1, Fangface would see the sun, or a representation of it, and transform back to Fangs at inconvenient times (without remembering anything), as shown in the episode "Space Monster Mishap", long before the gang's case would be over. As a result, the gang would have to transform him back into Fangface in order to complete their case.
Sixteen 30-minute episodes of Fangface were produced for the 1978 season.
When the series first aired, there was no TV Parental Guidelines rating system, but with repeats the show has been rated as TV-G.
The opening title narration, voiced by John Stephenson, for each episode consists of the following:
Every 400 years, a baby werewolf is born into the Fangsworth family, and so when the moon shined on little Sherman Fangsworth, he changed into Fangface, a werewolf! Only the sun can change him back to normal, and so little Fangs grew up and teamed up with three daring teenagers – Kim, Biff and Puggsy – and together they find danger, excitement and adventure! Who can save the day, who can wrong the rights and right the wrongs .... none other than Fangface!
Fangface and Fangpuss
In 1979, the second season, titled Fangface and Fangpuss aired as a segment on The Plastic Man Comedy/Adventure Show and introduced a new character: Baby Fangs, Fangs' infant cousin, who turns into a baby werewolf called Fangpuss (which contradicts the opening narration stating that only one werewolf is born into the family every 400 years, but, of course, that werewolf could be born through another family which may be married to the Fangsworth family). The show remained in the same mystery-adventure style as the first season, but episodes were now shortened to 15-minute segments. Sixteen episodes of Fangface and Fangpuss were produced for the 1979/80 season.
The episodes "The Creepy Goon from the Spooky Lagoon" and "Dr. Lupiter and the Thing from Jupiter" are the only second-season episodes in which Baby Fangs/Fangpuss did not make an appearance.
Just as Fangs is unaware that he is Fangface, Fangs is also unaware that his cousin, Baby Fangs, is Fangpuss. When Fangs sees Fangpuss in the episode "There Is Nothing Worse Than a Stony Curse", Fangs becomes scared and runs off.
During Season 2, Fangface and Fangpuss would never see the sun, or a representation, as shown in the episode "There Is Nothing Worse Than a Stony Curse", and transform back to normal before the gang's case would be over.
Fangface and Fangpuss ran from September 22, 1979, to September 27, 1980; it then became a separate series in 1981 and, like the original Fangface, ran for just one season. After this series, Fangface and company faded into obscurity until reruns began to air on Cartoon Network and Boomerang.
- Susan Blu as Kim
- Bart Braverman as Puggsy
- Jerry Dexter as Biff
- Frank Welker as Sherman "Fangs" Fangsworth aka Fangface
This section needs to be reformatted as a table.
Nº Title Original air date 1 "A Heap of Trouble" September 9, 1978 Professor Arnos uses his invention to change into a hulking blue Heap creature, and plans on changing everyone on the university's campus into monsters for revenge. 2 "A Creep from the Deep" September 16, 1978 Grueller and his men steal an ancient tablet that will lead them to lost treasure, defying the consequences of its curse. 3 "The Shocking Creature Feature" September 23, 1978 Dr. Cybron, an evil scientist, plans to create numerous energy creatures and use them in his plot to take over the world. 4 "Westward Ho to the UFO" September 30, 1978 A race of spider creatures from space cover the city in webs, trying to take over the world. 5 "The Great Ape Escape" October 7, 1978 Professor Ling is captured by Ape Creatures on the Misty Islands, and it's up to the gang to rescue him. 6 "Dinosaur Daze" October 14, 1978 A live Tyranosaurus breaks surface during an earthquake and is being controlled by a mysterious figure. Fangface must stop it before it causes damage to the city. 7 "Don't Abra When You Cadabra" October 21, 1978 Mysto the Magician creates a super wand that can bend buildings over sideways, and with it, he plans to take over the world. 8 "Space Monster Mishap" October 28, 1978 A Space Monster gains entry into a space station and uses a device to drain the minds of the most brilliant scientists. 9 "The Invisible Menace Mix-up" November 4, 1978 The Sky Ghost kidnaps airplane daredevil Su Chang in order to get information on where her uncle hides a valuable black pearl, the only thing that can power his invisibility machine. 10 "The Cuckoo Carnival Calamity" November 11, 1978 The evil swami Zorak uses a control device to turn Harold 'Hal' Hercules into a monster in order to get the world's strongest teenager to help him steal gold. 11 "Begone, You Amazon" November 18, 1978 During a storm, the gang land in the Amazon jungle where Fangface rescues Sheba, an Amazon queen. Fangface and his friends must help her reclaim her throne from her evil cousin, Thera. 12 "Snow Job Jitters" November 25, 1978 The gang's ski-trip turns into a delivery when they help take Charlie (a cat with a formula on how to make synthetic gold hidden on him) to a laboratory while trying to avoid a villain named the Scorpion. 13 "The Goofy Gargoyle Goof-Up" December 2, 1978 The gang go to a Hollywood costume party, where they meet the glamorous Raquel Taylor. Unfortunately, Crula plans on making the actress a bride for her gargoyle. 14 "A Toothy Shark Is No Lark" December 9, 1978 Neptune, a sea-creature from Atlantis, uses a device to control a shark in order to enslave humanity into building him a new empire. 15 "Where's the Wolf That's the Werewolf?" December 16, 1978 A werewolf is stealing the animals in the Jungleland Animal Safari and Fangface is to blame. What they don't know is that a staff member named Zorlaff is stealing the animals using a special potion in order to create a potion that will turn him into different animals. 16 "Don't Get Mean with the Cobra Queen" December 23, 1978 Cobra Queen sends her giant cobra to abduct Gloria Vanderfeller in order to claim her fortune.
Fangface and Fangpuss (1979/80)
Nº Title Original air date 1 "There Is Nothing Worse Than a Stony Curse" September 22, 1979 The evil Medulla possesses an amulet that gives her the appearance and powers of Medusa. She uses her powers to turn the top scientists to stone and auction them off to the highest bidder. 2 "Evil Guider of the Giant Spider" September 29, 1979 Upon crashing onto Spider Island and an encounter with a giant spider, the group ends up stumbling upon the lab of Dr. Lazarus Web who plans to use a formula to enlarge the insects and take over the world. 3 "Dr. Lupiter and the Thing from Jupiter" October 6, 1979 When astronaut Steve West lands on Jupiter, Dr. Lupiter opens a trap door in the shuttle where the gases of Jupiter turn Steve into a molten monster in a plan to tap the Earth's energy supply. 4 "Who Do the Voodoo" October 13, 1979 Nigel Winslow helps Count Drako escape from prison by using black magic to change Count Drako into a mist monster. 5 "The Creepy Goon from the Spooky Lagoon" October 20, 1979 Dr. Vincent Blackmire has invented a machine that transfer the contents of one's brain to another. The results end up different when he switches the brain contents of a Lagoon Monster with Fangface. 6 "A Scary Affair in the Skullman's Lair" October 27, 1979 A race of Skullmen have kidnapped Professor Ortega and Carmen. They have also shrunken them in a plot to enter a crack in the Earth and retrieve a Skull Coin containing the superpowers of the Skullmen's ancestors. 7 "A Time-Machine Trip to the Pirate's Ship" November 3, 1979 Our heroes are transported in time where they stumble upon pirates led by Ironmask, who has plans to rob a Spanish ship. 8 "The Ill Will of Dr. Chill" November 10, 1979 Dr. Chill uses a heat ray to melt the polar ice caps. He plans to flood the Earth if his demands aren't met. 9 "The Romantic Plot of the She-Wolf Robot" November 17, 1979 Countess Zarla creates a robotic female werewolf to seduce Fangface into helping her steal the Maltese Diamond Cat from its museum. 10 "The Sinister Plan of Lizard Man" November 24, 1979 Lizard Man uses a ray that turns his victims into small reptiles. He uses the device to steal a meteor that will give him enough super-strength to rule the world. 11 "Royal Trouble with the King's Double" December 1, 1979 Count Basil kidnaps King Rudolph to prevent his coronation. Seeing as Puggsy resembles the king, he takes his place while the others rescue the real king. 12 "The Stone-Cold Dragon of Gold" December 8, 1979 A golden dragon statue lies within Hong Kong. 13 "The Evil Design of Vulture-Man's Mind" December 15, 1979 Vulture-Man is abducting Peruvian natives with his giant condor and is making them his slaves to mine for the precious metals located in Vulture Mountain. 14 "The Defiant Casablanca Giant" December 22, 1979 Abdul the Giant captures a nuclear physicist named Zatci Hafid and plans to sell him to aliens in exchange for diamonds. 15 "The Film Fiasco of Director Disastro" December 29, 1979 Disastro is an alien director who plans to make a movie called "The Day the Earth Exploded" with special effects that are too real. 16 "A Goofy Bungle in the Filipino Jungle" January 5, 1980 On the Philippine Islands, a tribe of Filipino Cavemen have been discovered by Zeno, who uses his ring to hypnotize them into stealing Professor Batack's invention which can make a man 100 times stronger than normal.
- Fangface at the Internet Movie Database