Song Lyric Sunday/Song of the Day: “Smells Like Cartoon Planet”

Jim’s prompt for today is "Odor/Scent/Smell/Taste," and this is what I thought of. Apologies in advance…

Over 20 years ago, I was teaching in Cary, North Carolina (a suburb of Raleigh). One afternoon, I got back to my hotel, turned on the TV, and started flipping through the channels. When I got to Cartoon Network (owned at the time by Ted Turner, one of the wealthiest men in Atlanta, who operated a bunch of cable TV stations), I had to stop and watch, because what I was looking at was insane. Some clever individuals had taken some characters from a late ’60’s-early ’70’s Saturday morning cartoon called Space Ghost and had them interacting in a manner I can only classify as puerile. There was Space Ghost, of course, and two of his archenemies, Zorak (who looked like a grasshopper or mantis and was locked in a prison pod) and Brak (who looked like a cat and was clearly not terribly bright). The show was mostly short skits with the occasional song or cartoon thrown in there. I had found Cartoon Planet, which was a spinoff from another show that ran on Friday night, Space Ghost Coast-to-Coast, which featured Space Ghost "interviewing" real people, including Greta Van Susteren, who was a commentator on CNN (also based in Atlanta and also owned by Turner), Fran Drescher, and Russell Johnson and Dawn Wells from Gilligan’s Island.

Anyway, I was hooked on Cartoon Planet, and when I got home I told Mary about it. As you can imagine, she rolled her eyes and shook her head, but after watching it a few times agreed that it was enjoyable. The "cast" issued three albums, of which I own the first, Modern Music For Swingin’ Superheroes. "Smells like Cartoon Planet" is the theme song for the show and the first cut on the album. It was written by Pete Smith and Andy Merrill and performed by George Lowe (Space Ghost), C. Martin Croker (Zorak), and Andy Merrill (Brak).

The lyrics, from Genius:

I smell turkey
Tuna fish!
Big beef-jerky!
Potato knish
I smell onions
Pizza too
The dog needs washing
And so do you

It smells like
(What does it smell like, Space Ghost?)
It smells like
(Pork and beans!)
It smells like
It smells like Cartoon Planet

Zorak, prison pod
Brak Brak
Barnyard animals
Zorak upside down
Sing it, fuzzy
I’m a little teapot short and stout

It smells like
(Asparagus and cabbage!)
It smells like
(Boxer shorts!)
It smells like
It smells like Cartoon Planet

And that’s the last Song Lyric Sunday for 2020, and Song of the Day for December 27, 2020. Happy New Year!

22 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday/Song of the Day: “Smells Like Cartoon Planet”

    1. Funny thing was that they all lived in the Atlanta area, and you used to hear George Lowe, who played Space Ghost, on lots of commercials. There was a local kids’ show host named Don Kennedy, and his voice would pop up on the show occasionally. He used to do the Popeye cartoon show in the afternoon as “Officer Don,” dressed in a policeman’s uniform. It gave me more of a feel for what it used to be like here…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I only lived in the Atlanta area for 8 years but remember visiting back in the seventies and eighties. Atlanta has changed a lot, which I guess most cities do. Back in the day seemed to be a lot more fun. Sigh.


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