Western Animation: Yogi Bear

"I'm smarter than the av-a-rage bear!"
Yogi Bear

Originally a supporting character on The Huckleberry Hound Show, Yogi Bear was one of the most popular early Hanna-Barbera characters. Most episodes revolved around Yogi's attempts to do things that other Jellystone Park bears didn't do (or weren't allowed to do): make money, fly, dodge hibernation, escape—or simply relieve tourists of their pic-a-nic baskets. Yogi's sidekick, Boo-Boo, would often warn Yogi that "the ranger isn't going to like this!" Indeed, Yogi would invariably be scolded by Ranger Smith.

Basically, the premise was that Yogi and Boo-Boo would steal picnic baskets from visitors to Jellystone National Park, and hilarity would ensue.

The character was popular enough to headline his own series in 1961. Supporting segments on The Yogi Bear Show featured Snagglepuss and Yakky Doodle. In 1964, Hanna-Barbera released its first animated feature, Hey There, It's Yogi Bear!, through Columbia Pictures. In the 1970s and 1980s, Yogi and his contemporaries appeared in several Crossover series. There were also a few prime-time specials, the best-remembered of which is probably the TV movie Yogi's First Christmas.

A live-action/CGI Yogi Bear feature film, with Dan Aykroyd as the voice of Yogi and Justin Timberlake as the voice of Boo-Boo, was released in December 2010. A sequel is due in 2017, with Amy Adams as the voice of Cindy Bear.

Check the character sheet. Also see the memes page.
    Filmography 
  • The Huckleberry Hound Show (1958-1960 Syndication)- The series in which the Yogi Bear shorts debuted.
  • The Yogi Bear Show (1961-1962 Syndication): Yogi's Spin-Off series.
  • Hey There, It's Yogi Bear! (1964): A theatrical feature film in which Yogi and Boo Boo go on a road trip to rescue Cindy Bear from a circus.
  • Yogi's Gang (1973 ABC): An extremely politically correct crossover series in which Yogi, Boo Boo, and various other Hanna-Barbera stars travel around in a flying ark and do good deeds. Preceded by a television special, Yogi's Ark Lark.
  • Laff-A-Lympics (1977-1979 ABC): A massive crossover series with just about every popular Hanna-Barbera character around at the time. Yogi, Scooby-Doo, and Mumbly lead rival teams in a parody of "Battle of the Network Stars."
  • Yogi's Space Race (1979 NBC): A cross between Wacky Races and Laff-a-Lympics, Recycled INSPACE.
  • Galaxy Goof-Ups (1978-1979 NBC): A spin-off of the previous series in which Yogi, Huckleberry Hound, a poor man's Daffy Duck, and an easily frightened fill-in for Boo Boo act as space rangers and hang out at a disco.
  • Casper's First Christmas (1979 Syndication): A half-hour Christmas Special crossing Casper the Friendly Ghost with Yogi and his Hanna-Barbera cohorts.
  • Yogi's First Christmas (1980 Syndication): A TV movie recycling many of the songs from the previous special.
  • Yogi Bear's All Star Comedy Christmas Caper (1982 CBS): A half-hour Christmas Special packed with cameos by other Hanna-Barbera characters.
  • Yogi's Treasure Hunt (1985-1988 Syndication): Another crossover series, in which Yogi, Boo Boo, Ranger Smith, and other popular HB stars hunt for treasure. Known for fourth wall breaking Self-Parody.
  • Yogi's Great Escape (1987 Syndication): A TV movie in which Yogi and Boo Boo escape Jellystone Park with three adopted bear cubs.
  • Yogi Bear And The Magical Flight Of The Spruce Goose (1987 Syndication): A TV movie in which Yogi, Boo Boo, and their fellow HB stars go for a ride on the famous Spruce Goose.
  • The Good, the Bad, and Huckleberry Hound (1988 Syndication): A TV movie featuring cameos by Yogi and Boo Boo.
  • Yogi and the Invasion of the Space Bears (1988 Syndication): A TV movie in which Yogi and Boo Boo get kidnapped by aliens and are replaced by a mob of robot clones. Daws Butler's final performance as Yogi.
  • The New Yogi Bear Show (1988 Syndication): A new batch of cartoons, with Greg Burson replacing the deceased Daws Butler as the voice of Yogi.
  • Fender Bender 500 (1990-1991 Syndication): A ReBoot of Wacky Races in which Dick Dastardly and Muttley race against several classic Hanna-Barbera characters, including Yogi and Boo Boo.
  • Yo Yogi! (1991 NBC): Yogi and his radical Hanna-Barbera buds are now teenagers that hang out at Jellystone Mall and work as junior detectives.
  • Yogi the Easter Bear (1994 Syndication): An Easter Special in which Yogi and Boo Boo search for the Easter Bunny.
  • Scooby-Doo in Arabian Nights (1994 TBS): Yogi and Boo Boo play a couple of genies in a Gender Flip retelling of Aladdin. Don Messick's last performance as Boo Boo.

This series provides examples of:

  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Cindy Bear was blue furred in the original shorts, though became light brown in later interpretations (par John Kricfalusi's shorts). Ranger Smith's uniform also changes color throughout the early series (also parodied in the Spumco shorts) while Yogi's original design had light colored highlight around his eyes (again, used in the Spumco shorts).
  • A Day in the Limelight: Ranger Smith was billed the star character for two cartoon shorts created by John Kricfalusi in the late 1990s, though the second one focuses more on Boo Boo.
  • Ageless Birthday Episode: Two of them: one for Ranger Smith and one for Yogi, and The New Yogi Bear Show had another one for Yogi.
  • An Aesop: Primarily in Yogi's Gang.
  • Animated Series
  • Animation Bump: The New Yogi Bear Show is a bit more fluid than the original 1960s episodes. And let's not go through the John Kricfalusi cartoons...
    • Hey There, It's Yogi Bear is also noticeably higher budget, bringing Hanna-Barbera back up to the standard of their later Tom and Jerry shorts.
  • Batman Gambit: Ranger Smith tried enforcing rules in Jellystone Park in order to reduce Yogi to a feral state. It backfired when Boo Boo did this instead.
  • Bears Are Bad News: Well, they sure make Ranger Smith's job a lot harder.
  • Beary Funny: That's Yogi in a nutshell.
  • Big Damn Movie: Hey There, It's Yogi Bear!
  • Big Eater: Yogi, of course.
  • Big Guy, Little Guy: Yogi and Boo Boo, naturally.
  • Bottle Episode
  • Bowties Are Cool: Well, they are for Boo Boo.
  • Bragging Theme Tune: Two, the original...
    Who is always on the spot? Who is? Yogi Bear!
    Who keeps cool when things are hot? Who does? Yogi Bear!
    Who believes the world's a dream and falls for some fantastic scheme
    But always winds up on the beam? Yogi Bear!!
    Yogi Bear is smarter than the average bear,
    Yogi Bear is always in the ranger's hair.
    At a picnic table you will find him there,
    Stuffing down more goodies than the average bear.
    He will sleep till noon, but before it's dark,
    He'll have every picnic basket that's in Jellystone Park.
    Yogi has it better than a millionaire,
    That's because he's smarter than the average bear.
  • Camp Gay: Snagglepuss. Drawn Together runs with this character interpretation.
  • Can't Live With Them, Can't Live Without Them: The majority of times Yogi or Ranger Smith leave Jellystone Park, the other ends up pining for them. The key plot point of "Home Sweet Jellystone".
  • Captain Ersatz: Quack-Up from Yogi's Space Race and Galaxy Goof-Ups is Daffy Duck with white plumage. Mel Blanc even does almost the exact same voice for him.
  • Catch Phrase: "Smarter than the average bear!" Also Boo Boo's oft-repeated line, "Mister Ranger isn't gonna like this, Yogi!"
    • If the other segments count, there's Snagglepuss' famous "Exit, stage right" (or whatever direction it was) and "heavens to Murgatroyd"
  • Crossover
  • Deadpan Snarker: Boo Boo has become this in the most recent update.
  • Depending on the Artist:
    • In the original series, Ranger Smith's design changed frequently between episodes; they eventually decided upon his permanent design in Hey There, It's Yogi Bear!.
    • As if that weren't enough, though, his appearance on Yogi's Gang gave him blond hair.
    • This is parodied in a sequence from "A Day in the Life of Ranger Smith", where Smith suffers an Art Shift every time he passes by a tree, from prior Ranger Smith models to the more John Kricfalusi-esque designs (John K directed this cartoon, after all), accompanied with increasingly bizarre walk cycles in Limited Animation.
    • Yogi himself had his mussel fur expanded around his eyes initially (this design was also revived in the Spumco series; John Kricfalusi stated his fondness of it).
    • Cindy Bear was also initially just a female Yogi with a dress and blue fur before being redesigned to look more feminine. The Spumco shorts use her later design but reuse her blue fur.
  • Deranged Animation: Naturally, the Spumco shorts have their usual trademark style. Boo-Boo Runs Wild stands out in particular.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: Ironically, the original shorts themselves. As noted above, the characters' designs varied between shorts. The designs created for Hey There, it's Yogi Bear would eventually be used from that point on.
  • The Film of the Series: Hey There, It's Yogi Bear, and Yogi Bear (2010).
  • Hanna-Barbera
  • Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Cindy Bear
  • Have a Gay Old Time: In the Yogi's Gang theme song, "If those big goons were out of the way / the world would be so bright and gay."
  • Hero Antagonist: Ranger Smith, depending on your point of view.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Every episode of Yogi's Gang was named after the Villain of the Weeknote .
  • Live-Action Adaptation
  • Lovable Rogue: Yogi to a tee.
  • The Movie: Hey There, It's Yogi Bear!
  • Mythology Gag: The two gangsters in the 1958 episode "Big Brave Bear" were first used the season prior on The Ruff & Reddy Show as outlaws Killer and Diller.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The plot of the Hey There, It's Yogi Bear! film is kicked off thanks to this, with Yogi attempting to bluff Ranger Smith into thinking he's willing to leave the park and get transferred to the zoo unless he bends the "Do Not Feed the Bears" rules. The Ranger calls it and prepares to have him shipped to San Diego, which leads to a chain of events that ultimately end up with Cindy Bear trapped in a circus forced to perform for a cruel ringmaster and Yogi and Boo-Boo having to go and save her and then find their way back home.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Yogi's voice was based on Art Carney's character on The Honeymooners; further, Yogi Bear's offbeat philosophy (and name) was allegedly meant to remind people of baseball star Yogi Berra (William Hanna and Joseph Barbera denied it). Snagglepuss' voice was based on Bert Lahr, who played the Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz.
  • Phrase Catcher: In Yo Yogi!, whenever Yogi finishes kicking ass or his friends come to the rescue, his friends exclaim, "Yo Yogi!"
  • Punny Name: Jellystone Park, an obvious pun on Yellowstone National Park. Yogi's own name is a play on baseball great Yogi Berra, though Bill and Joe claim that this was unintentional.
  • Ring Around the Collar
  • Sentimental Music Cue: Played surprisingly straight on both The Yogi Bear Show in the early-1960's and The New Yogi Bear Show from 1988, such as in Slap Happy Birthday, when Yogi and Boo Boo are in their cave talking about Ranger Smith's birthday (for a double whammy, the exact same music is re-used at the end of the episode when Yogi reveals their surprise party to the ranger).
  • Sidekick: Boo-Boo.
  • Spin-Off Babies: Yo Yogi!
  • Take That: From Animaniacs, "Calhoun Q. Capybara".
  • Talking Animal: Both Yogi And Boo-Boo can communicate with the Ranger in English.
  • Worthy Opponent: Yogi admits this about Ranger Smith in "Home Sweet Jellystone", outright becoming an Antagonist in Mourning after he leaves the park, losing any sense of competition in stealing picnic baskets anymore.
  • You Say Tomato: Yogi's famous pronunciations of "av-a-redge" and "pic-a-nic".