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Western Animation / Salty's Lighthouse

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Salty's Lighthouse is a show about a young boy named Salty and his adventures with his seaside friends in a lighthouse.

The show was created by Sunbow Entertainment and TLC in 1997. The show is often remembered for the dubbed TUGS segments.

This show provides examples of:

  • Accessory-Wearing Cartoon Animal: Sophie and Sadie both wear ribbons in their hair. Sophie wears two, while Sadie wears one.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Many characters get this in the series;
    • The Z-Stacks go from rivals of the Stars to allies, however Zorran does act antagonistic on the occasion.
      • On the contrary Zorran does help out and is nice at times thereby making him more of a Jerk with a Heart of Gold in this version.
    • Burke and Blair went from devious scrap merchants to movie producers who were looking for tugs to use for their next movie.
    • While not necessarily evil, Bluenose is a lot more reasonable here and doesn’t use his authority to screw over the tugs.
    • Johnny Cuba went from an evil gangster to a lonely tanker who only wants friends.
    • Nantucket became a friend of the Tugs.
  • Adaptational Name Change: Quite a few in the series;
    • OJ became Otis, likely due to the O. J. Simpson case still being fresh in everyone's minds.
    • Big Mac became Big Stack to avoid legal issues with McDonald's.
    • The Zed Stacks became the Zero Fleet.
    • Zebedee became Z.B. (even though his original name on his hull wasn't censored like it was for Big Mac/Big Stack and OJ/Otis).
    • Johnny Cuba became Steamer.
    • Burke and Blair became Mr. Boffo and Mr. Socko.
    • The Coast Guard and his Messenger were merged into a single character and became Cappy.
    • Puffa became Chooch.
    • Jack became Scoop.
    • Nantucket became Tramper.
    • The Quarry Master was given the name Stoney.
    • Bigg City Port became Snug Boat Harbor.
  • Adaptational Nationality: Every character in the show was changed to have an American accent, the most obvious example being Izzy Gomez.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: Top Hat is a lot nicer here than he was in the original series.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Sea Rogue went from a tug who was forced into doing evil, into a pirate who stole barges for kicks.
  • Adapted Out: A few characters don't have roles in Salty's Lighthouse, mostly inconsequential characters.
  • All Just a Dream: Sea Rogue is revealed to simply be a dream of Top Hat.
  • The Big Race: The Star Fleet and Zero Fleet compete in a race in one episode.
  • Bothering by the Book: When Bluenose protests being towed to dry dock by Grampus, the latter points out that he's just following the rule book.
  • Brooklyn Rage: Zak And Z.B have Brooklyn accents.
  • Composite Character: The Coast Guard and his messenger were merged into the character Cappy.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Due to the above mentioned trope of the Z-Stacks in this version their black and red color scheme applies here.
  • Dub-Induced Plotline Change: The storylines of the Tugs segments here bear little to no resemblance to the originals.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Sea Rogue is only called Sea Rogue once, by Top Hat, everyone else just refers to him as "Pirate".
  • Frankenslation: The Tugs segments regularly consisted of clips from different episodes edited together. This commonly leads to things like the weather or time of day switching between cuts, and Sunshine changing liveries.
  • Funny Octopus: Ocho is an octopus who is friends with Salty. He likes to paint and often uses his tentacles to squirt paint onto his canvas. He also likes to pretend to be a pirate named Captain Calamari.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: Steamer's reason for sneaking into the harbor in this version.
  • Inconsistent Coloring: As mentioned above, Sunshine often switches between having yellow and white paintwork.
  • Injured Limb Episode: In "Let's Wing It", Sadie sprains her wing and has it put in a sling. This makes it difficult for her to sponge-paint with the rest of her friends.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Zorran. He's not as nice as the rest of the Zero Fleet but he is shown to help out and be nice at times, examples include:
    • Trying to cheer Izzy up with a joke when he was feeling glum about not being able to do his work due to him waiting for repairs.
    • Giving Lillie her fuel immediately instead of trying to give it to Vienna like in the original Deep Freeze episode.
    • After a disagreement with Hercules about bringing in the Princess Alice through the south entrance and refusing to help at first, he comes to assist after Sunshine gets blown off by the wind and crashes, apologizes about being stubborn and even decides to teach Ten Cents and Sunshine some tricks of how to tow in windy conditions.
  • Lighter and Softer: A lot of the darker elements of the original TUGS series were removed. The segment loosely adapting "Munitions", for example, sees the fire being put out in short order, with almost all of the explosions and Big Mickey's death being tactfully edited out.
  • Mythology Gag: From "The Big Birthday Splash" from "Big Birthday Bash"
    Ten Cents: I said I was sorry! What do you want me to do? Sink myself?
    Sunshine: Not a bad idea...
  • Meaningful Name: Mr. Boffo And Mr. Socko are successful movie producers. Boffo and Socko both mean successful.
  • Picnic Episode: In "Some Guys Have All the Luck", Salty and his friends want to have a picnic on the beach, but when rain spoils their plans, Aunt Chovie suggests they spend their picnic in the lighthouse.
  • Punny Name: Aunt Chovie.
  • Pulled from Your Day Off: Happens to Grampus in "Bluenose Buds In".
  • Recycled In Space: Shining Time Station IN A LIGHTHOUSE.
  • Related in the Adaptation: In addition to changing gender, Sunshine is reinterpreted as Ten Cents' little sister.
  • Series Continuity Error: When Boomer first appeared via a flashback/story in the TUGS segment of "Banana Splits", his bad luck ended after he was built into a house boat like in Tugs. Later he reappeared in "Some Guys Have all the Luck" where it is instead stated that he lost his bad luck by successfully towing a schooner out to sea. Another problem is that the way Ten Cents tells his story he acts as if Zip and Zug don't know who Boomer is, however in his next appearance in "Some Guys Have all the Luck" they share a scene with him.
  • She's a Man in Japan:
    • Sunshine, Captain Starr, and Little Ditcher all became female, most likely to appeal to a wider set of audience. The latter being a very jarring case of Vocal Dissonance as the last one's voice becomes that of a little girl.
    • The Fultan Ferry is an interesting example as it was referred to as a male and female, it was genderless in Tugs.
  • Shout-Out: In "Otis the Movie Star", Mr. Boffo and Mr. Socko tell Captain Star about some of the movies they've made in the past. These include Beauty and the Boat, Jurassic Harbor, and Tugrats.
  • Speak in Unison: The Clams almost always speak this way.
  • Take That!: In "Otis the Movie Star", when looking for an old boat to star in Rock the Boat, Mr. Boffo and Mr. Socko consider hiring Grampus, then decide against it because they don't want to remake Underwaterworld.
  • Talk Like a Pirate: Sea Rogue, due to actually being a pirate in this version.
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: Sophie and Sadie both wear ribbons on their heads.
  • Theme Twin Naming: The Seagull twins are named Sophie and Sadie.
  • Unreliable Illustrator: The Tugs look almost nothing like their physical models in the opening theme, with Top Hat missing his monocle, Sunshine being incredibly tiny (he, or she in this case, is the same size as Ten Cents in the actual TUGS footage), and everyone overall looking much lumpier and rounded around the faces. The rest of the animation doesn't fare much better thanks to the low budget, changing look from episode to episode. The clams suffer the worst of this.
  • Vocal Evolution: Boomer’s voice changes drastically from his first appearance, going from sounding like Zug to having a far more distinct voice in his second appearance.