Jem and the Holograms was one of the first science fiction and action cartoons ever created for girls. The cartoon was a joint production between Hasbro, Marvel and Sunbow Productions — the same team that had created the popular G.I. Joe and Transformers cartoons. The show was created by Christy Marx, a writer who had worked on both G.I. Joe and Transformers, based on a new doll line that Hasbro had developed.
Jem was the no. 1 Nielsen rated syndicated cartoon series in November 1986. It was the third most watched children’s program in syndication with 2.5 million viewers weekly in 1987. The cartooon was syndicated in multiple countries including Australia, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands, United States, Italy and France.
Hasbro got into a nasty sales war with Mattel, who had introduced a similar doll like “Barbie and the Rockers.” Sales for both lines suffered badly as a result, leading Hasbro to discontinue the toy line. The cartoon lasted an additional season before Hasbro pulled the plug in it as well.
Jem became a cult classic for women that grew up in the 1980s, leading Hasbro to develop a live-action movie without Marx’s input. Underfunded, the film was forced to jettison all of the science fiction and action elements that made the cartoon popular and the movie was a financial and critical flop — reviled by both fans and the general public.
Webzine The Front recently interviewed Marx about creating the creation of the show.
The Front presents Off Hollywood.
In the premiere episode of Off Hollywood, we meet Christy Marx, writer and co-creator of Jem and The Holograms, a new-wave cartoon featuring an iconic head of pink hair and a braininess that transcends glamour ‘n’ glitter, fashion ‘n’ fame.