The Trouble with Miss Switch (1980)

Forty-three years ago today, The Trouble with Miss Switch premiered on ABC. It is a 1980 animated television special produced by Ruby-Spears Productions and based on the 1971 children’s book of the same name by Barbara Brooks Wallace. It originally aired in two parts on ABC Weekend Special series on February 16 and 23, 1980.

Title: The Trouble with Miss Switch
Genre: Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Family, Fantasy
Written by: Sheldon Stark
Directed by: Charles A. Nichols
Voices of: Janet Waldo, Eric Taslitz, Nancy McKeon, June Foray, Frank Welker
Music by: Dean Elliott
Country of origin: United States
Original language: English
Executive producer: Joe Ruby and Ken Spears
Producer: Jerry Eisenberg
Running time: 60 minutes
Production company: Ruby-Spears Productions
Distributor: ABC
Original network: ABC
Picture format: Color
Audio format: Mono
Original release: February 16 – 23, 1980

Rupert Brown and Amelia Daley are classmates at Pepperdine Elementary School who discover that their substitute teacher, Miss Switch, is a witch complete with a magical talking Lykoi-Breed cat named Bathsheba. She tells the children that the wicked witch Saturna has taken control of the Witches’ Council and has condemned the fair Miss Switch with the aid of her Compute-O-Witch. Rupert suggests bewitching a certain football player’s number at the big game to ensure victory, but Saturna causes the spell to backfire so that the visiting team wins. Rupert comes up with another plan, but asks Miss Switch to let him and Amelia accompany her.

Miss Switch and Bathsheba fly to Witch Mountain with Rupert and Amelia. Saturna sends out her bats to attack them, which causes the broom to splinter; some bats carry Miss Switch away, while the others drop Rupert, Amelia and Bathsheba down a well. Miss Switch finds herself in the council room, where the Witches’ Council prepares their verdict. The children and Bathsheba get out of the well, and sneak in disguised as witches. Just as Miss Switch agrees to be banished, her friends reveal that her ability to spread love and joy is the most original witchcraft idea of all. After the Compute-O-Witch explodes from Rupert and Amelia’s speech, the Witches’ Council banishes Saturna and appoints Miss Switch the new Head Witch. The next day, Miss Switch tells the kids that she’s to return to Witch Mountain as she says goodbye to Rupert and Amelia.

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