Friday, February 24, 2023

The Hot Hero Sandwich Project

by G. Jack Urso 

Title card shot from the show.

The Hot Hero Sandwich Project is an effort to historically document the innovative children’s television show, Hot Hero Sandwich, which ran from 1979-1980 on NBC and produced by Bruce and Carole Hart, both of whom helped develop material for the first season of Sesame Street. Bruce Hart, in fact, co-wrote the Sesame Street theme and Carole wrote some early episodes. Both Harts were involved with Marlo Thomas’ noted children's entertainment TV special Free to Be . . . You and Me (1972) and together wrote, with Bruce directing, actor/rocker Rex Smith’s 1979 film Sooner or Later (Smith also performed on episode 10 of Hot Hero Sandwich).

Often described as Saturday Night Live for teens, the show was a mix of sketches, short films, animation, celebrity interviews, musical guests, and of course the awesome in-house Hot Hero Band. Despite running for just eleven episodes, the show struck a nerve with its fans who, for the past four decades, have quietly kept the show alive with social media and sharing the precious few clips still available from the show.

With the gracious assistance of some of the former members of the show, I have put together a behind-the-scenes look with interviews, the first complete episode guide, never before seen photos, video clips, and much more. Not just to document the show, but also to preserve it as a case study for those in education and entertainment looking for new ways of reaching a difficult demographic with positive and inspirational programming that addresses the issues teens deal with using multimedia integrated with a common theme.

Below is a list of the current articles detailing the show. More articles are coming so STAY TUNED! 

The Hot Hero Sandwich Project: A Historical Retrospective of the 1979-1980 Innovative Emmy-Award Winning Children’s Television Show

A Second Serving! 
What’s the series about? Dig into these articles and interviews and find out!

Original series production documents and primary source materials provide a unique and rare behind-the-scenes look at the show. 

A variety of posts on different aspects of the series.

Clip Jobs!
Collections of related video segments from the series.


In Conversation With . . .
Interviews with key individuals providing a behind-the-scenes look at the series and the industry.


On the Flip Side with the Hot Hero Band
Learn more about the guys behind the classic rock sound of the show!


Off-Script with the Writers
Working closely with Bruce and Carole Hart, the writers were tasked with interpreting their vision for the teen audience.

Off- Stage with the Cast Members
These interviews with the actors lay out the low-down on our favorite characters and sketches and provide insight into the industry. 

These scene-by-scene walkthroughs provide short descriptions and links to a clip for each scene in each episode. This is a work in progress, so check back often for new entries!

Short Takes
These brief profiles turn the spotlight on those who worked behind the camera!

YouTube Channel

Bookmark the project's web address:
For media and other inquiries, please email

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  1. I think the article is right -- HHS is a positive template for shows for kids/teens. Good overall job. Thanks for sharing.

  2. The index is easy to read, well organized and concise - always a good thing. Being able to check out all the vids gives you the sense of how well done and important HHS is. Great work.

  3. Wow, what a compendium. Great show, deserves to be archived and remembered. Good job.