Tooncrap #38 - The Power Team

Acclaimed Crap
Saban: 1990

Written by: Raymond Gallant

You may recall a couple articles ago I looked back once more at Captain N: The Game Master. And for all its terrible animation errors and annoying characters, I realized the thing that bothers me the most about it is the poor handling of some of the most beloved video game characters of all time. From a frog voiced Mega Man to a prissy Simon Belmont. It was an affront to our perceptions of these great game icons. So if Dic could screw up a cartoon based on beloved game characters...

Imagine what Saban could do with characters nobody gave a damn about.

In 1990, video game publisher Acclaim wanted to try to get their hands in the pot of the video game cartoon craze. And they would do so through the creation of a show called Video Power. Video Power served as a video game tips and tricks show, hosted by Johnny Arcade.

Who I still consider to be the humanized version of cocaine.

But while for many the most enticing thing about Video Power was its tips and tricks, the focal selling point for its first season was The Power Team. A cartoon that featured all your "favorite" Acclaim video game stars. You know, characters like...

Umm, that guy from NARC

That guy from Wizards and Warriors... You know, that Fabio guy.

Some guy from Arch Rivals

The Bigfoot Monster Truck because why not?

And Kwirk, who Johnny Arcade refers to as "America's favorite Tomato". Ah yes, I remember the heyday of Kwirkmania. You couldn't walk outside your house without seeing bootleg Kwirk shirts and everyone singing the praises of him. Not bad for some forgettable game boy game.

There's also Johnny Himself who kind of acts like the Captain N of the group. Only where Kevin actually gets in on the action, he's more of the Charlie who leads his gaming angels into action.

Ladies and gentlemen, your protagonists. The god damn White Castle Kids Club!

Complete with Hammerman Toothpaste so you'll never forget the taste.

Let's get into an episode of the Power Team to see just how powerful they actually are. So let's get into the power and review this thing. Specifically the first episode "Yes, We Have No Tomatoes". Not even America's favorite tomato? Well, this episode dsisapoints me already.

We open the episode with two truck drivers carrying a haul of tomatoes down the road, when they see a motorcyclist on the ground in a heap. They go to check on him, but discover it's the old "fake injured motorcyclist" gag. Damn. That one gets me every time.

Turns out the motorcyclist works for the main villain of the series, the evil Mr. Big, stereotypical fat mobster extraordinaire. He chases off the drivers with his car as he happily exclaims that yes, we have lots of tomatoes. Wait, we do? Dammit title, you lied to me. I thought we were friends!

He has his hired goons shoot the tomatoes in the truck, and commandeer the truck for themselves.

Boy, Albert Wesker really needed the money, didn't he?

Meanwhile, the Power Team are hiding out in tomatoes as they try to protect one of the few remaining shipments not destroyed by Mr. Big. Though I don't see the point in hiding in the tomatoes, especially since they're riding Bigfoot, you know, an easily recognizable Monster Truck? Tyrone (The Arch Rivals guy) complains about hiding in tomatoes, which Kwirk finds to be very offensive towards tomatoes.

He just said he didn't like hiding in them, he didn't slight tomatoes themselves. Nobody likes a social justice tomato, Kwirk.

Meanwhile, Mr. Big has his cronies set up fake cows on the road, so that the next tomato shipment will have to stop. Or, you know, any other vehicle that has to stop. I mean, this isn't just a world where Tomatoes are the only thing sent via truck... is it? Turns out the cow trap works as Bigfoot (who has a redneck accent. Because monster trucks are a redneck sport, get it?) sees the boarded bovine and comes to a halt.

Tyrone confronts Mr. Big, who shoots a missile at him. Turns out a simple toss of a basketball is all that needs to be done to put a stop to heat seeking missiles. I guess the Pro Stars weren't as terrible an idea as I thought. Before Tyrone can get blasted by lasers, Bigfoot makes a bee line toward Mr. Big. Mr. Big however has a plan for that as he literally throws a brick wall at the truck, and splatters ink in its headlights, somehow blinding the truck.

Before Spike (The Wesker looking crony) can ram Bigfoot, Kuros (Fabio), puts a stop to it) as his other crony Joe is stopped by Max Force (The NARC guy). Before they can celebrate, Mr. Big threatens to lob a grenade at Bigfoot, and advances on the Power Team with black cartridges, which I guess send them back to their video game worlds. However, when he mispronounces tomatoes as "tomahtoes" this sends Kwirk into a rage as he tosses his brethren at the girthy goomba. He was defending the rights of tomatoes, and now he's just straight up killing them. No wonder he got like one video game.

The power team manage to defeat Mr. Big's gang with more basketballs and tomatoes, before sending them into retreat, as they head to "Tomahto" warehouse.

Sometime later, Kwirk (dressed as a detective for some ungodly reason) arrives at the warehouse to confront Mr. Big in his tomato sauce warehouse. Turns out Mr. Big's plan is to extort the pizza companies as with them being the only sauce game in town, they plan to charge the companies ten times what they're worth.

Kwirk confronts Mr. Big's gang, and manages to beat them by strategically knocking down a bunch of well placed boxes and cans. He eventually gets cornered, and before he can get kick some heinz quarters, he gets placed on a hook, as Mr. Big plans to can him for good. And what are the rest of the Power Team doing?

Staying at home, saying how it was pretty stupid of Kwirk to go on his own to confront Mr. Big. You know what's stupider? NOBODY GOING TO HELP HIM!

They follow a pizza truck, as a pizza man named Pops provides a distraction for the Power Team to go on the attack of Mr. Big. They easily beat him and save Kwirk, managing to put a stop to their tomato... err... tomahto plan.

Tomato, tomahto, let's call the whole thing crap.

And that's The Power Team in a nutshell, and while it's a crappy cartoon for it's rushed stories, dull characters, and overall foolishness, I didn't have a hatred for it as much as I did Captain N. It was a much easier cartoon to sit through as it never got to the point of being really bad. However, as a glorified commercial for Acclaim products, it fails miserably. In the end, I'm no more interested in Wizards and Warriors or Double Dribble as I was before watching this. And that's probably the biggest problem of all. So, in the end, it's tolerable tooncrap.