Many baby boomers spent a huge part of their Saturday mornings with his shows.
Sid and Marty Krofft created various TV shows that entertained an entire generation.
And now legendary Producer Marty Krofft, who created classic TV shows, left fans sobbing.
Marty Krofft, who co-created iconic children’s television shows, including “H.R. Pufnstuf” and “Land of the Lost,” died in California at age 86.
An icon of children’s television
Krofft’s publicist, B. Harlan Boll, said family and friends surrounded Krofft and that the cause of death was kidney failure.
Krofft co-created many of his groundbreaking children’s shows with his brother Sid from the 1960s.
They got their start in the business after coming from a family of puppeteers.
By far, their most popular show was “H.R. Pufnstuf.”
The show centered around a shipwrecked boy named Jimmy, portrayed by teenage actor Jack Wild.
Jimmy was 11 years old when he arrived on the island and met the talking dragon, H.R. Pufnstuf.
Jimmy and a talking flute named Freddy take a ride on a mysterious boat, but the boat is actually owned by a wicked witch named Wilhelmina W. Witchiepoo (played by Billie Hayes).
Witchiepoo rides on a broomstick called the Vroom Broom. She uses the boat to lure Jimmy and Freddy to her castle on Living Island, where she plans to take Jimmy prisoner and steal Freddy.
H. R. Pufnstuf was performed by Roberto Gamonet and voiced by the show’s writer Lennie Weinrib, who also said many of the other characters as the Mayor of Living Island.
The dragon rescues Jimmy and protects him from Witchiepoo, as his cave is the only place where her magic has no effect.
The show premiered in 1969 and was immediately celebrated for its imaginative set design, master puppetry, and its catchy theme song.
“Its success spawned a feature film, produced with Universal Pictures as a partner and distributor,” Krofft’s representative wrote.
Land of the Lost and D.C. Follies
The Krofft brothers’ next big hit was “Land of the Lost,” which premiered in 1974.
The show’s plot centered around a family transported into another dimension ruled by dinosaurs, primates, and lizard creatures.
Each episode focused on their attempts to try and get back to reality.
The show ran from 1974-1977 and spawned a “Land of the Lost” movie in 2009 starring Will Ferrell and Danny McBride.
In the 1980s, the brothers created the show “D.C. Follies,” which, while it ran for only two seasons from 1987 to 1989, was lauded by critics and fans alike for its cutting-edge satire of prominent cultural and political figures of the time.
The show featured life-size puppets portraying celebrities and politicians such as Ronald Reagan, Mike Tyson, Richard Nixon, George Bush, Princess Di, and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Krofft’s shows were often psychedelic in nature, introducing different colors and concepts to their young impressionable audiences.
“We screwed with every kid’s mind,” Marty Krofft once in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. “There’s a Krofft look — the colors. There’s an edge. Disney doesn’t have an edge.”
But the Krofft brothers’ shows weren’t just limited to trippy kids’ shows.
They also created popular variety shows like “Donny & Marie,” “The Brady Bunch Hour,” and “Barbara Mandrell and the Mandrell Sisters.”
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