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Western Animation / Flash Gordon (1996)

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Flash Gordon was a 1996 animated TV series loosely based on the comic strip of the same name. In this version, Flash and Dale are teenagers with a fondness for skateboarding — or in this case hoverboarding — who accidentally get trapped on the planet Mongo thanks to their bumbling scientist friend, Dr. Zarkov. There they are thrown headlong into a rebellion against the reptilian dictator, Emperor Ming. But they aren't alone in their fight; they have help from some of the natives including the gallant hawk man, Prince Talon, and the fierce yet honour-driven lionid, Princess Thundar.

The people behind this series also did Phantom 2040, which depicted Flash Gordon's King Features stablemate The Phantom (or rather, his descendant) as a teenager with a flying motorcycle.

The entire series can be watched on Tubi.


  • Action Figure File Card: They consisted of the heroes and villains describing each other.
  • Adaptation Name Change: "Flash" is merely the title character's nickname in this version, not his first name, which was changed to "Alex" in honor of his creator Alex Raymond.
  • Adaptational Dye-Job: The traditionally black-haired Zarkov is portrayed with red hair.
  • Adaptational Species Change: As opposed to most versions where he's humanoid, Ming is a lizardman here. Presumably this was to avoid the Yellow Peril that previous versions of the character had going.
  • Alien Invasion: As with previous versions, Ming the Merciless is trying to invade Earth. This is mentioned directly in the first and last episodes.
  • Amazon Brigade: With "Prince Thun" being rewritten in this version as "Princess Thundar", her people, the Lionidsnote  are also portrayed this way.
  • And the Adventure Continues: The final scene shows the heroes still trapped in the alien dimension but confident that their loved ones will mount another rescue attempt in the near future. They then continue with their regular adventures while saying that things are looking interesting.
  • Appease the Volcano God: There were no gods involved, but Dale and Dr. Zarkov were almost thrown into a volcano by some crazy cave people.
  • Brainwashed: Dr. Zarkov suffered this at the hands of Sulpha; the entire team was almost wiped out because of this.
  • Cat Girl: Thundar, due to her being a lionid.
  • Enemy Mine: "Enemy Ming" has Flash, Ming, and Aura all be forced to work together after they all end up stranded on one of Mondo's moons together.
  • Dashing Hispanic: Prince Barin is portrayed as one.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Dr. Zarkov tends to be this when he's not repeatedly saying that they're all doomed.
  • Decomposite Character: While Vultan does appear as a character, his role as Flash's ally is transferred to his son Talon, a new character.
  • Enemy Mine: In one early episode, Ming and those rebelling against him grudgingly ally against invaders from another planet who attack both sides indiscriminately. The other aliens are Ming's people in disguise, and he is just trying to lure the resistance into a trap under the guise of cooperation.
  • Gender Flip: In this version, Flash's ally Prince Thun of the Lion People became Princess Thundar of the Lionids.
  • Green-Skinned Space Babe: Princess Aura in this version, although here, she's more of a "turquoise skinned space babe".
  • Hoverboard: Flash, Dale, and even Dr. Zarkov use these to get around Mongo (when they're not using starblazersnote ), coming naturally to Flash and Dale, since it's just like using a skateboard on Earth
  • Human Aliens: While most of the inhabitants of Mondo appear to be Beast Men, there are also completely human-looking residents like Katie.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • When we first meet Flash, he's playing a space simulation arcade game called "X-9". Named after Secret Agent X-9, a comic strip drawn by Flash Gordon creator Alex Raymond.
    • The dyna-crystals appear to be a reference to the Dynak-X computer in Defenders of the Earth and its crystal core.
  • One-Gender Race: Male lionids are mysteriously absent
  • Only in It for the Money: Kobalt is introduced with a comment that he serves whoever pays him the most. Flash correctly guesses that that generally means Ming.
  • Our Wormholes Are Different: Travel between Earth's solar system and Mongo's is by an Unrealistic Black Hole.
  • Power Crystal: Dyna-crystals are Mongo's main power source.
  • Protagonist Title: Flash is the protagonist, and the show is named after him.
  • Shout-Out: "Vandals from the Void" has a likely unintentional one to Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog when Flash defeats Ming yet again:
    "I hate that Earthling!"
  • Tuckerization: As noted under "Adaptation Name Change", this Flash's first name is now Alex after creator Alex Raymond.