Jake Kong, Eddie Spencer and Tracy the Gorilla are The Ghost Busters. Together they fight against the evil forces of Prime Evil.
In the 70s of the last century a live action TV series about ghost hunters was broadcasted on TV in the US, made by Filmation. In this series actors Forrest Tucker and Larry Storch played two detectives, namely Jake Kong and Eddie Spencer respectively, who investigated 'ghostly' cases. In these investigations Jake and Eddie are assisted by a gorilla named Tracy. For lack of CGI in that period, and probably also lack of a decent budget, the role of Tracy was played by a man in a monkey suit - literally. If you thought the original Planet of the Apes movies were bad in terms of special effects with people in monkey suits, then you have not seen Tracy from the Ghostbusters.
If you didn’t live in the US, there’s a big chance you’ve never seen the series. In fact probably many people in the U.S. haven’t seen it because after only 15 episodes the plug was pulled on this series.
Fast forward to 1984 and the release of the live action movie Ghostbusters. This movie was written by Dan Akroyd and Harold Ramis who both also play the lead role along with Bill Murray. The film is a combination of comedy and science fiction, but has no relationship with the 70 live action TV series - other than the name.
The biggest difference between the Ghostbusters TV show and the Ghostbusters movie, is that the film Ghostbusters is a big hit at the cinemas. This success leads to a sequel, Ghostbusters II, and even a spin-off in the form of a cartoon. And no, that cartoon is not animated by Filmation. The cartoon spin-off of the movie Ghostbusters is called "The Real Ghostbusters" which is ironic because the "real" Ghostbusters are Jake Kong, Eddie Spencer and Tracy the gorilla from the 70's TV series.
Success often leads to free riders and so did the Ghostbusters movie franchise. After the success of the movie Ghostbusters Filmation pulls their Ghostbusters series from stable. This time Filmation decided to make a follow up to the TV series in the form of a cartoon and of course to capitalize on the Ghostbusters hype. This lead to the Ghostbusters cartoon series, which later was renamed to "Filmation's Ghostbusters" to avoid confusion with The Real Ghostbusters cartoon.
In Filmation's Ghostbusters the sons of Jake Kong and Eddie Spencer, Jake and Eddie Spencer Jr. (how original) take over the Ghostbusters shop. The creativity was definitely empty at Filmation when they had to come up with names for the main characters. Gorilla Tracy remains in service and so the trio ghost hunters are complete again.
Jake is the leader of the group. His nose twitches when ghosts are nearby. Eddie is the clumsy one and is oddly enough afraid of ghosts. Not a good trait if you’re a ghost hunter. Tracy the gorilla is actually the smartest of the group. All inventions used by the Ghostbusters come from him. Though he can’t talk, he more than makes up for it with his various inventions.
Aside from the ghost element, Ghostbusters has turned in a simplified good vs . evil cartoon show with the ghosts, how could it be otherwise, as the bad guys.
The headquarters of the Ghostbusters is Ghost Command. Almost all devices in Ghost Command feature a skull motif and almost all devices talk. Sort of like a ghostly Siri. For example, the phone is called Ansa Bone which can talk and even answer the phone by itself. It often functions as a telephone operator. If you thought interactive TV is cool, then you have not seen Skelevision. Not only can this tv talk, but it can show what the villains are cooking up - without ever using something like a camera. The car of the Ghostbusters is the Ghost Buggy, a talkative and complaining car that can take various forms such as a plane or train. It is the default mode of transportation for the Ghostbusters, often piloted by Tracy the gorilla. Yes, having a gorilla ride the care is supposed to be funny.
To combat the villains the Ghostbusters are aided by redheaded reporter Jessica Wray, a redhead babe whom Jake has a crush on. Futura is the other lady on the side of good, a Ghostbuster from the future with purple skin. In almost every Filmation series there’s a character that seems to have crawled out of the ass of an Ewok just to irritate viewers. Belfry is the annoying character that was added for comedic relief, but is anything but funny.
Jake Kong Jr. is the son of the original Jake Kong from The Ghost Busters. Jake is the leader of the Ghostbusters just like his father. He is often responsible for coming up with ideas to solve difficult Ghostbusting problems. His nose twitches when ghosts are nearby. Jake also is of Swedish heritage because of his paternal grandfather.
Eddie Spencer Jr. is the son of the original Eddie Spencer from The Ghost Busters. Eddie is often frightened by ghosts and though he means well, he is a bit of a klutz and frequently fumbles things up.
Tracy the Gorilla is the same ape from The Ghost Busters. Tracy is extremely smart and is credited with inventing all of the Ghostbusting gadgets and would often construct one to help a bad situation. Tracy is also very powerful and uses his strength to get out of tight spots. Unlike the live-action series where he only wore various hats (most commonly a beanie), in this series, he wears a fedora, backpack and khaki shorts.
Belfry is a pink-colored bat who can emit a sonic scream. Belfry calls it the Belfry Blast. Belfry will sometimes tag along on Ghostbusting adventures but often he is told it could be too dangerous. Belfry has three cousins: a Southern bat named Beauregard, a Brooklyn bat named Rafter, and an English bat named Yves. Belfry resembles Piglet from Winnie the Pooh. His name and species are a reference to the expression "Bats in the Belfry".
Jessica Wray is a TV news reporter. She often reports on the events the Ghostbusters will go investigate and sometimes accompanies them. Jake seems to have a crush on her and she for him. Originally had blonde hair in her initial design.
The evil ghosts are led by Prime Evil, an amalgam between a ghost and a robot with the voice of the latter. It is possible some rust formed in the circuits of Prime Evil because whole sentences can’t be spoken by him without adding “Kkrr” and “KGGG" to all his sentences. In every episode Prime Evilhas a plan to tumble the earth in darkness, because that’s what all super villains do.
Prime Evil has many minions who aid him in his quest to turn the earth into darkness. The ghosts who aid Prime Evil are laughable caricatures rather than monsters which you'd be afraid of. In terms of content, this is one of the biggest differences with Real Ghostbusters. Filmation 's Ghostbusters is an action comedy rather than being scary or serious at any time.
The primary villain is a wizard, although he appears to be a robot with an android-like human skull and garbed in flowing red robes. Prime Evil has many evil powers including the ability to shoot energy bolts from his fingers. Prime Evil's minions often find themselves getting zapped when they do not succeed in stopping the Ghostbusters. He encounter the Ghostbusters on the first episode; however, they outsmarted him and they imprisoned him for 100 years until he escaped. He went back in time to get his revenge. Prime Evil has a hard time saying "Ghostbusters" and will often refer to them as "Ghost Blisters", "Ghost Buzzards", "Ghost Brats", "Ghost Bozos" and "Ghost Bunglers". Originally designed to resemble Mumm-Ra from the Thundercats.
A Werewolf from the future who wears high-top gym shoes.
A robotic skeleton, similar in appearance to C-3PO. He is easily frightened and is often zapped to pieces by Prime Evil or falls apart on account of his own fright. Originally stockier in his pilot appearance. In the battle against Big Evil, he betrays Prime Evil's and turns himself Big Evil's henchman.
Resembles a safari hunter with an English accent. His vocal nuance exaggerates the letter "r" for the letter "w" such as pronouncing "dematerializer" as "dematewealwizer." Often gets in trouble for calling Prime Evil "old boy", "old bean" and other English endearments. According to the DVD guidebook, the Haunter's speech, mannerisms, and appearance are based on actor Terry Thomas. Sometimes will make his pith helmet extremely large to fly in or to assist in kidnapping people. His monocle has magic powers.
A pot-bellied, legless flying rat with an elongated nose, a lizard-like body, and an acute squint in one eye. He has no magic powers other than levitation since he has no wings. His name is loosely based on Burt Bacharach, and is also a master keyboard player.
Resembles Morticia from The Addams Family, wearing a long black hairstyle. She has power over mist and is known for calling people "darling". She is also known for her extreme vanity. Originally had a human appearance and a long red dress.
A skeleton knight with a Dalí-esque moustache who also rides a skeletal horse named Frightmare, and he wields the Trance Lance that fires beams that induce sleep. His name is a reference to Sir Lancelot.
The intro song of the series is very contagious. The text is minimal and is in fact only a catch phrase: "Let's go Ghostbusters, let's go . Let's go ! Let's Go !” Try getting that out of your head.
The Ghostbusters had its own toyline with several figures and even some playsets. For a toy from the 80s, with usually low production quality, the similarities of the toy figures to the cartoon version are remarkably well in general. In terms of features, not so much. Several vehicles and even the home of the Ghostbusters are also produced. The car of the Ghostbusters is one of the nicer playsets. In the cartoon the car can change into a plane for example. This is all included in the toy version and it actually works.