1 9 7 9 – 1 9 8 0 (USA)
13 x 30 minute episodes
In this lame Hanna-Barbera revival for NBC, a quintet of Globetrotters could transform into crime fighters with fantastic powers thanks to an amulet found by player-coach Nate Branch.
Bald Curly Neal (voiced by Stu Gilliam) became Sphere Man (an oversized basketball), Twiggy Sanders (Buster Jones) became Spaghetti Man, Geese Ausbie (John Williams) became Multi-Man, and Nate (Scatman Crothers) became Liquid Man.
And when Sweet Lou Dunbar (Adam Wade) became Gizmo Man, he had perhaps the biggest Afro ever seen on network television. It contained a seemingly unlimited supply of gadgets.
Three of the team’s super-heroic identities and powers were taken from the characters in the 1966 Hanna-Barbera cartoon The Impossibles. The transformation sequences and many of the Super Globetrotters’ moves were identical to their Impossibles counterparts.
The five basketballers could also fly and liked to say in unison while battling as superheroes, “Super Globetrotters, away!”
Over 13 episodes, the Globetrotters came up against villains, including Museum Man, Bwana Bob, Facelift, Whaleman, Robo (and his Globots), Tattoo Man, Movie Man, the Phantom Cowboy, Time Lord, Count Bragula, Bull Moose, Attila the Hun, and Merlo the Magician and his knights of the crooked table.
Guiding them in their crime-fighting endeavours was the megaphone-like Crime Globe (voiced by Frank Welker). Michael Rye narrated.
Each show ended with a wild basketball game, but the series dribbled off the NBC schedule within three months and reappeared just briefly a few months later in repeats before ending.
Nate Branch/Liquid Man
Curly Neal/Sphere Man
Twiggy Sanders/Spaghetti Man
Sweet Lou Dunbar/Gizmo Man