Robert Lamb ~ Filmation Studios ~ BraveStarr

1987 -  The Wild, Wild West in Space!

Check out Shawn's fantasy series, Allon, at her website.

Robert Lamb caricature


more to tell about BraveStarr, but that will have to wait until I finish other shows.

BraveStarr promotional book cover

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Tex But No Hex

My only BraveStarr script was written for two reasons: one, to address elements of crime and punishment missing in most animated series; and two. to further my cost-cutting goals as storyboard production coordinator.

BraveStarr featured a lawman and a judge as two of the main characters. Bringing criminals to justice would naturally be a recurring theme in the show. However, the leading bad guy, Tex Hex, had supernatural powers that enabled him to evade capture. Though I understood the dynamics that an ongoing series imposes on individual stories, I still chafed at justice continually being thwarted.

If Marshal BraveStarr was to get a fair shot at capturing the villian, Tex must lose his "Hex." Since Stampede was the source of Tex's powers, he was the one to take them away. Considering past exchanges, it didn't take much for Tex Hex to provoke Stampede to anger. In a showdown reprise of the BraveStarr feature, Tex Hex calls out the marshal without knowing his finger isn't loaded. BraveStarr has no trouble arresting the varmint and putting him behind bars. Then J. B. presided over the case she had been waiting for: Tex Hex vs. the People of New Texas!

The trial of Tex Hex perfectly suited my efforts to economize production by using flashbacks of sequences from past shows. Live action series usually refer to these as "morgue shows." Whereas reusing stock animation or individual shots from other shows does save costs, lifting groups of scenes for flashbacks made this show even more economical. In my draft of the script I listed storyboard and script scenes to be used when witnesses gave their testimonies. Some of my choices were replaced by Don Heckman, another staff writer. He selected scenes he was more familiar with from scripts he had written. I was a bit annoyed by this but I had made major edits to other writers' scripts when I was in his place, so I couldn't complain too much. All that said, I still tried to make the story as entertaining as possible.

In the end Stampede had to rescue Tex's sorry butt so the show could go on, but I added a twist. Tex doesn't want to go back. He would rather rot in prison than be under Stampede's thumb, or hoof. Alas, the tragic fellow has no choice and Stampede yanks him back in a cloud of smoke.

My favorite line is Stampede calling Tex Hex a "misbegotten cactus kisser!"

Dingo Dan model

Thirty Thirty Goes Camping

Shawn Elizabeth Lamb, my better half and a wonderful novelist, pitched this idea to Arthur Nadel, the head of the writing department. Shawn was just getting started in her writing career and Arthur loved to give new writers a break. I came in after Arthur's critique of Shawn's first draft script. He liked her story but felt the opening needed to be stronger.

That night Shawn bounced some ideas off me. I made a few suggestions and at the end of the brainstorming session Shawn had devised the prison break action sequence. We acted out the parts of Moribund and Dingo Dan in our living room pausing only to jot down notes. The next day Shawn added the prison break and edited her script as per Arthur's other notes.

Arthur was pleasantly surprised that Shawn had risen to the challenge so well. With his approval the script went into production.

Moribund model
Allon, a fantasy series by Shawn Lamb