The Many Faces Of Hector Ramirez

So Eduardo M. Freyre observed:  "Hector Ramirez sure gets around.  Does this mean GI Joe, Transformers, Inhumanoids, and Jem take place all take in the same universe???"

Why, yes.  Yes, it does.

And I almost managed to add My Little Pony to that same shared universe.

Hector Ramirez is the host of the popular TV news program "20 Questions" -- well, in the tooniverse, at least.  A parody of pompous newscasters, Hector turned out to be one of the most serviceable characters we came up with at Sunbow while making the Hasbro-based cartoons.

Whenever we needed some jerk character to make a big exposition dump in the middle of a program, Hector got the nod.

The real explanation is somewhat prosaic: After I created the Hector Ramirez character for GI Joe, Hasbro's legal team checked to make sure he wasn't based on any real life person.[1]

Tho originally intended as a one shot character for the "20 Questions" episode, I brought him back for the 2nd part of "The Traitor," a 2-parter about a Joe accused of treason.

Rather than do the standard "In our last episode..." re-cap, I opened part two with Hector anchoring his news program, 20 Questions.  His topic that night?  Dusty Rudat, the Joe accused of treason who had escaped custody and was now presumed to have joined Cobra.

Once they had cleared a TV news reporter character for one series,[2] it was just easier to plug him in whenever another show needed such a character. Hector proved to be a remarkably resilient foil:  Logically he could be expected to know & deliver all sorts of detailed background information.  He was also dumber than box of frozen chimichangas & irritatingly full of himself.  Whenever info had to be dumped, he was the lad to dump it.

And now you know...and knowing is half the battle...[3]

Oh, and as for almost tying My Little Pony in with Joe/Jem/Trans/Oids, at the same time we were doing the My Little Pony: The Movie, we were also working on the Transformers: The Movie and GI Joe: The Movie.  I suggested one of the Ponies go look for help against the menace facing them.  The first person she would have asked would have been Optimus Prime, the second would have been Shipwreck (who would assume he was suffering from DTs & pour out the beer he was drinking).

Alas, humorless spoilsports cooler heads prevailed and those scenes were never animated...




[1]  Standard movie/TV legal practice; while Hector was based loosely on Geraldo Rivera, Hasbro's legal department wanted to make sure that wasn't another real life Hector Ramirez working in journalism who might sue the bejeebers outta them take umbrage at the character's name.

[2]  Coincidentally, just about the time the first GI Joe episode with Hector went into production, the infamous serial killer Richard Ramirez was captured.  Hasbro wanted to change Hector's last name but we persuaded them not to, Ramirez being a fairly common Hispanic surname.

[3] Red lasers and blue lasers making up the other half...

Hector Ramirez sure gets around. Does this mean GIJoe, Transformers, Inhumanoids, and Jem trake place all take in the same universe???

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