tek's rating: ½

Dungeons & Dragons, on CBS
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You know how sometimes you're on an amusement park ride with your friends, when suddenly you're transported into a fantasy realm, given new clothes and magic weapons, and forced to fight demons and dragons and put up with crazy little old sorcerers who talk in riddles all the time, while constantly searching for a way home? Yeah... man, someone ought to look into that, put up a warning sign on the rides, or something. I dunno.

Anyway, this was what happened to a group of friends in this Saturday morning cartoon from 1983. It was kinda based on the D&D RPG that was popular at the time, but... I dunno. I never played the game, but I always liked the cartoon. I think it kind of suffered in a couple ways... I'm given to understand that a lot of D&D players didn't like it because it was too... I dunno, cartoony, I guess. Not really like the game so much. But it also caught flak from folks who were all up in arms against the RPG for being "occult" or whatever. You know the type. Don't even have to watch a show to know they hate it and it's evil and stuff. Feh.

Anyway... The characters were on this ride, and got sucked into a magical world where they met a sorcerer called Dungeon Master, who gave them each a magic weapon. Hank became a ranger, getting a magic bow; Diana, the acrobat got a magic javelin; Sheila, the thief got a cloak of invisibility; her little brother Bobby, the barbarian, got a club; Presto, the magician, got a magic hat, though the spells he cast generally came out wrong; and Eric, the cavalier with a cavalier attitude, got a shield. He was normally rather sarcastic and self-centered and cowardly, constantly complaining, rarely helping. He was also the funniest character, and the one most determined to find a way home. Kind of hard to understand why the others kept putting up with him, but perhaps that says something about their own character. The group also were befriended by a young unicorn called Uni (who didn't talk, btw). Bobby was especially close to Uni.

So, while they all traveled around searching for a way home, they'd sometimes help people or whatever. Dungeon Master would occasionally pop up unexpectedly, to give them advice they never really understood; Eric found him especially annoying. Anyway, they often had to fight Venger, who was like this evil, powerful wizard or whatever, who more or less seemed to rule the world, or most of it. He was an enemy of Dungeon Master, and he always wanted to get his hands on the kids' magic weapons. He had a servant called Shadow Demon, and hordes of orcs or whatever. And there was also a five-headed dragon named Tiamat, who was an enemy of both the heroes and Venger. And I suppose there were other random threats sometimes. Not really sure what else to say.

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