USA Cartoon Express

A decade before Cartoon Network, and almost two decades before Adult Swim, there was the USA Cartoon Express.))

Just The Facts

  1. The USA Cartoon Express, on the air from 1982-1996, was the first daily block of cartoon programming in the history of ever.
  2. Why the USA executives decided they needed the padding of animated train footage to justify a block of solid cartoon awesomeness is a mystery that haunts children of the 80s (and early 90s) to this day.
  3. That voice sound familiar? It was narrated by Keith Olbermann. No, seriously.

"All Aboard The Cartoooooooooooon Express!"

The USA Cartoon Express was a daily solid programming block of all cartoons, the very first of it's kind, that first went on the air in 1982. It's a consistent nostalgia staple for anyone born between 1975-1985 who had a relative with cable, and was likely quite a relief to their parents.

In it's early days, The Cartoon Express was pretty much the dumping ground for the massive archives of late-70s Hanna Barbera cartoons. Playing back to back, you'd think it would be blatantly obvious how derivative and devoid of ideas the studio was at that point, but instead it was awesome because kids are kind of stupid and definitely not very picky when it comes to cartoons, even when we're talking about dozens of similar wise-cracking mutts, teenage mystery-solvers that just happened to also play music, families of cavemen/barbarians/romans/retro-future people(?) and what have you.

Don't even pretend you don't know half these cartoons. Don't even pretend you do know the other half.

In A Minute!

Because this was the 80s, cartoons needed to have life-lessons or something. So, stuffed in-between ancient Huckleberry hound reruns and the same 30 seconds of animated train footage, they'd have these "In A Minute" segments where other kids told you to brush your teeth and stuff. Believe it or not, this was considered educational.