There's always a debate about whether violent cartoons are good for kids and whether some cartoon characters are actually gay. But some cartoon heroes just aren't good for kids. Maybe they're darkly depressed Vietnam vets, maybe they were on the A-Team or maybe they're a stripper. Whatever the reason, these heroes just plain aren't good role models.
John Rambo made his name in First Blood as a brooding, PTSD-ridden Vietnam vet, then eventually became a killing machine that just made a bloody mess of Burma in Rambo. So of course he'd make a good role model for kids, right? That's what producers must have been thinking when they green-lit Rambo and the Forces of Freedom, a cartoon that put Sylvester Stallone's hero on the TV screens of children across the nation. They toned down the PTSD implications that made Rambo such a complex hero in David Morell's book First Blood and ramped up the witty one-liners. Rambo was united with a team of crime-fighters to fight the forces of S.A.V.A.G.E., a criminal empire led by General Warhawk. Somehow, Rambo managed to thwart Warhawk's plans (among them were stealing art from Venice and buying South America) without killing anyone, instead compelling most of the bad guys into simply surrendering. Not surprisingly, Rambo didn't translate well to the realm of kid's TV and the series was cancelled after its first season.