1 9 8 5 – 1 9 8 6 (USA/Canada/Japan/France)
65 x 30 minute episodes
Like many other cartoon shows of the mid-1980s, Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors was created to promote a line of toys – in this case, Mattel’s ‘Wheeled Warriors’ range.
The central character was a 19-year-old lad named Jayce, who led the Lightning League in battle against the Monster Minds while roaming the universe searching for his father, Audric.
The cartoon leaned heavily on the Star Wars story.
Aided by his elderly wizard mentor Gillian (an Obi Wan Kenobi-like figure) Jayce was locked in a struggle with the evil Saw Boss, who threatened to take over the universe (and had the same condition that caused Darth Vader to speak so hoarsely).
Flora was a flower created and developed into a humanoid by Gillian and Audric, who had telepathic powers and could sense Monster Minds and communicate with animals and plants (she travelled about on a flying fish).
Other regular characters included Oon, an Eternal Squire created by Squiresmith Wixland and Herc Stormsailor, a mercenary who was the proud owner and pilot of the space barge The Pride Of The Skies II (modelled on the character of Han Solo).
The other Monster Minds included Gun Grinner )the sub-boss of the Monster Minds who commanded the Gun Trooper clones); Terror Tank (another sub-boss of the Monster Minds who led the Terror Trooper clones); KO Kruiser (who commanded the KO Trooper clones); Beast Walker Commander, and Saw Trooper Commander (the only Monster Mind other than Saw Boss that could take a humanoid form).
They were aided by a scientist called Dr Zorg.
The Lightning League and the Monster Minds had several special vehicles (based on the Mattel toy range).
The animation was done in Japan, and the dialogue and soundtrack were dubbed in Canada with dinner theatre veteran Darrin Baker as Jayce, leading a crew of all Canadian voices.
The series was to have ended with a feature-length film in which Jayce finally reunited with his father, but because the action figure range was a flop, the movie was scrapped, and the series was left with an open ending that never concluded.
Released in France as Jayce et les Conquérants de la Lumière.
Herc Stormsailor/Terror Tank
KO Cruiser/Audric/Saw Trooper