Space Ghost is a fictional superhero created by Hanna-Barbera Productions and designed by Alex Toth for CBS in the 1960s. He started out as a superhero who, with his sidekick teen helpers Jan, Jace and Blip the monkey, fought supervillain in outer space. In more recent years, the character has been brought back as a fictional late-night talk show host on Cartoon Network and Adult Swim and revamped in a DC Comics mini-series.
The original series debuted in 1966 where it shared time with an unrelated segment called Dino Boy in the Lost Valley. Space Ghost was voiced by Gary Owens along with Tim Matheson as the voice of Jace and Ginny Tyler voicing Jan. Don Messick also added his voice talent to Blip. (Previously, Matheson was the voice of "Jonny" in Jonny Quest, another Hanna Barbara adventure cartoon.) Space Ghost and his helpers fought supervillains with the recurring of them being Moltar (voiced by Don Messick), Zorak (voiced by Don Messick), Black Widow (voiced by Ginny Tyler and also named the Spider Woman in one episodes), Metallus (voiced by Ted Cassidy), Brak (voiced by Keye Luke), and Creature King (voiced by Vic Perrin).
The original series comprised 42 Space Ghost and 18 Dino Boy episodes ending in 1968. 22 new Space Ghost segments appeared on Space Stars in 1981. The episodes introduced a new assortment of villains including an evil version of Space Ghost called Space Spectre who came from an alternate universe. His space ship, the Phantom Cruiser, was also given a sleeker and more modernized look. Similar to the original series, Space Ghost often came to the aid of The Herculoids and vice versa. They also frequently crossed paths with the Teen Force, and it appeared that Jan and Teen Force member Kid Comet were dating as well. Gary Owens reprised his role as Space Ghost, but Tim Matheson was replaced by Steve J. Spears as the voice of Jace, Ginny Tyler was replaced by Alexandra Stewart as the voice of Jan, and Don Messick was replaced by Frank Welker as the vocal effects for Blip.
The character Space Ghost hosts a talk show, Space Ghost Coast to Coast, which began broadcasting in on Cartoon Network. One-time villains Zorak (a giant Praying Mantis or Locust, depending on the particular episode) and Moltar (a lava creature inside a metal suit) were Space Ghost's sidekicks (with guest appearances from many other old Space Ghost villains, most notably Brak). The show, as well as the short-lived Cartoon Planet, was a spoof of late-night shows such as the Late Show with David Letterman. Celebrities interviewed by Space Ghost included Beck, Bill Nye the Science Guy, Magicians Penn and Teller, Cassandra Peterson aka Elvira, Joel Hodgson, Carrot Top, Jim Carrey, Jon Benjamin, Conan O'Brien, Charlton Heston, Thurston Moore, Pavement, Thom Yorke, Bjork, "Weird Al" Yankovic and Mark Hamill. In this series he is played by George Lowe.
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Official Site: Hanna Barbera
Links: Wikipedia Entry Original Space Ghost FAQ Adult Swim's SG: C2C page