Nah, MCA owned USA Network with a then Viacom-less Paramount. USA Cartoon Express had many Hanna-Barbera shows airing until Cartoon Network came around in 1992. Yogi Bear, interestingly enough, reran on Nickelodeon.Universal was in the running to buy Hanna-Barbera in 1991. Fitting, since they had distributed Jetsons: The Movie and had dedicated a ride at Universal Studios to the H-B properties. So was Hallmark, apparently.
If Turner hadn't made the winning bid, how much do you think that would have effected things? I can think of a few things.
If Universal had bought them:
- There wouldn't have been a Cartoon Network. CN's reason for being was to be an outlet for Turner's vast animation library.
- Related to the above, Dexter's Lab, The Powerpuff Girls, et al. wouldn't have made it to being full series or would have gone to Nickelodeon.
- The other H-B properties wouldn't be obscure today. WB infamously let most of the H-B properties fall out of pop-culture memory in order to go all in on Scooby Doo, but if Universal had bought them, the Flinstones, The Jetsons and Yogi Bear would have continued to be big franchises.
- The Funtastic World of Hanna Barbera would probably still be at Universal today.
If Hallmark had bought them:
- Hallmark would have shut down H-B and destroyed all their master film elements, like they did to Filmation when they bought them out.
- H-B would be even less culturally relevant than they are today. I don't even think Scooby Doo would have been spared.