Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers, by Lee
Strange that this article features two instances of chipmunks carried away by balloons, but no story of balloon-powered flight is complete without Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers. In case you need a refresher:
(Do you have that theme song stuck firmly in your head? Good. You can thank me later.)
Admittedly, the Rescue Rangers aren’t really “carried away” by a balloon; rather, they fly in a plane that prominently features an oblong red balloon. But this is perhaps the most extraordinary balloon you’ve ever seen. According to The Ranger Wiki, the internet’s most reliable source of Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers knowledge:
[The Ranger Plane] is supposed to apply most of the lift to the Ranger Plane and help it hover in the air, so the gas in it has to be lighter than air. However, in Ghost of a Chance, the Rescue Rangers rode the detached balloon as they descended to the ground without the Ranger Plane, and afterwards, the balloon stayed on the ground. Another explanation may be that the balloon is more of a safety device in case the wings fail. Three Men and a Booby is a good example for the Ranger Plane being able to fly without it after it had been released to distract the falcons.
It’s not filled with hot air or helium. Instead, it’s filled with a mysterious gas that changes density depending on the circumstance. Remarkable? Unbelievable? Not when you consider its extraordinary inventor and pilot Gadget Hackwrench. Very little was outside of the realm of possibility for this genius inventor, engineer, scientist…and warrior:
If she could invent a steel-armored tank that balances on a rotating ring of plungers and an electromagnetic projectile shield, then why not invent a special gas for the Ranger Plane balloon?
The other Rescue Rangers held aloft by this red balloon make up quite the motley crew. The thinly veiled Indiana Jones ripoff. The candy addict. The cheese addict. The green housefly that doesn’t speak English. On top of it all, rampant sexual tension between Chip, Dale and Gadget threatened to tear the group apart. But in spite of it all,
No, No, it never fails
Once they’re involved
Somehow whatever’s wrong gets solved
And they fly off into the sunset in a bleach bottle held aloft by a red balloon filled with a mysterious gas.
Calvin and Hobbes always wins, but that was really a nice stroll through my childhood afternoons. Rescue Rangers was the best Disney Afternoon cartoon, although Darkwing Duck came in at a strong second.
Missing Option: Gonzo in the Muppet Movie.
I would have nominated this book:
wow, I just finished a impromtu travel through my childhood. While I wasn’t around much for ‘the Chipmunks’ I remember quite well ‘Resuce Rangers’ and ‘Doug’ as part of my afternoon viewing, but I have to say that ‘Calvin’ beats them all.
Calvin was a kid who refused to grow up and still have fun with Hobbes even though to adults it was just a stuffed tiger. Also his view of the world eerily mirrors my own.
By the way, I just looked up the 5th Dimension Song “Up Up and Away” on Wikipedia.
It won the Grammies for Best Song and Best Record in 1968.
Aretha Franklin’s “Respect” and Sam and Dave’s “Soul Man” won R&B awards that year, but weren’t even nominated in the top categories.
Awards shows are ridiculous.