with a serious case of Pac-Man Fever in 1982, ABC released two
(count ‘em, two!) series featuring that omnivorous - and at
that time omnipresent - yellow orb of video game fame. The
Pac-Man/Little Rascals/Richie Rich Show aired immediately
before Pac-Man in the network’s Saturday morning lineup.
Joined by Ms. Pac-Man, who was
now Pac's wife, as well as the newly created Baby-Pac, Chomp
Chomp the dog, and Sour Puss the cat, the Pac family lived in
Pac-Land (making "Pac" the most overused word since "Smurf").
On Pac-Man's own show, the family also gained a powerful
friend in Super Pac, who was the star of his own arcade game.
Near their home was the Power
Forest, where Pac-Man worked as chief of security, guarding
the precious power pellets that grew there. These pellets, the
source of all Pac-power, were coveted by the evil Mezmaron,
who constantly sent his ghosts Inky, Blinky, Pinky, Clyde, and
Sue after them.
Unlike the arcade game, Pac-Man
would only attack the ghosts defensively, since this was an
era of toned-down violence in cartoons. When necessary, Packy
would chomp at the ghosts and force them to disappear, until
they could recharge themselves with a new ghost costume from
Mezmaron's wardrobe closet.
The second season paired repeats
of Pac-Man with another 80's fad-inspired cartoon, Rubik the
Amazing Cube, for The Pac-Man/Rubik the Amazing Cube Hour.
In an odd case of game becomes
'toon becomes game, the animated Pac-Man spawned a video game
of its own, titled Pac-Land. Though graphically superior, the
side-scrolling adventure game never caught on in the same way
as its simpler, yet undeniably infectious predecessor.