Pole Position is an animated cartoon series produced by DIC Entertainment which aired on CBS in the 1980s. Although the cartoon shares its name with the videogame Pole Position by Namco, there is no other connection between the two entities. The name Pole Position is copyright of Namco and used under license, and DIC apparently really wanted to use that name. note
The show featured three young sibling crime fighters, Dan, Tess, and young Daisy Darrett, the elder two of whom were stunt drivers and were part of a secret government operation under the guise of the "Pole Position Stunt Show" that was run by their Uncle Zachary. Pole Position itself seemed to be a way to disguise and protect top-secret scientific research. The youths inherited the role after their parents died in an unfortunate car accident. The team is equipped with two high-tech talking vehicles named "Roadie" and "Wheels".
The vehicles featured numerous hidden gadgets like water skis and hover jets. The vehicles' computers themselves are portable and can be removed from the dashboards and carried around using handles, (thus they are often referred to as "the modules"). They are characters that appeared as computer-drawn faces displayed on video screens.
Tropes found in this series:
- Action Girl: Tess.
- Animesque: A staple of mid-80s DiC, courtesy of AIC and some other studios.
- Cool Car: Roadie and Wheels. For extra points, Wheels seems to be a (heavily modified) 1960's Ford Mustang.
- Deadpan Snarker: Roadie and Wheels.
- Eenie, Meenie, Miny Moai: Booby-trapped statues like this show up in "The Trouble With Kuma."
- Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: Tess is obviously the responsible sibling while the hot-headed Dan is the foolish sibling.
- Gender Misdirection: The heroes once had to meet a T. D. Russel and were never told if Russel was a man or a woman. After getting rid of two men claiming to be Russel, they learn the real one is a woman.
- Girlish Pigtails: Daisy.
- Hubcap Hovercraft: Roadie and Wheels
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Several episodes have Punny Names derived from Alfred Hitchcock films.
- Idiot Hero: Dan.
- Invisible Parents: Implied to be the case, but is never explored in detail in the show. That is, it's acknowledged that the kids' parents were also members of Pole Position, but exactly where they are now is never brought up.
- The Mentor: Dr. Zachary.
- New Powers as the Plot Demands: Roadie and Wheels didn't have a consistent arsenal of gadgets; they'd manifest whatever was most useful at the time.
- Not Now, Kiddo: Happens often whenever Kuma figures out something and tries to tell the kids. He usually gets it from Dan, who always ends up regretting it later.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Roadie And Wheels - and their drivers. Tess is much more restrained and logical than her impulsive brother.
- "Scooby-Doo" Hoax: Happens in the episode "Dial 'M' for Magic", but without unmasking anyone. Instead, the main bad guy—an evil magician—uses an illusion of a demon in order to trick the residents of the town of the week into digging for gold from a nearby mine, and giving it to him in order to "appease" the demon.
- Tagalong Kid: Daisy.
- Team Pet/Non-Human Sidekick: Kuma.
- Voodoo Shark: 'Dial M For Magic', when a magician gives the heroes a staff that turns into a snake... it's explained as a snake hypnotized into being super stiff that resembles a wooden staff.
- Zeerust: At the time, Roadie looked like a suitably futuristic car. Not so today.