The Raccoons and the Lost Star was a precursor to the critically-acclaimed animated series The Raccoons and debuted in 1983. It came after the first Raccoons seasonal specials, which were The Christmas Raccoons in 1980 and The Raccoons on Ice in 1981. There are some thematic elements that don't exist in the first specials, such as the Raccoons' world being separate from that of the humans.

    The story begins when Schaeffer the sheepdog, voiced by veteran actor Carl Banas[1] is playing with his human owners, Dan the Forest Ranger voiced by John Schneider, and his children Tommy and Julie, performed by Hadley Kay and Tammy Bourne, respectively when there is a surprise that takes the humans inside their cabin in the Evergreen Forest. As things progress, a plane lands in front of the cabin which takes Schaeffer to the planet where the Raccoons live. Upon his arrival, he runs into Sophia Tutu, performed by Sharon Lewis who looks familiar to him, although she doesn't seem to know Schaeffer. This is perhaps where things don't make sense at least based on the previous specials, as Schaeffer is a mystery to all the other characters who he supposedly knew in the Evergreen Forest. Sophia takes Schaeffer to meet Bert Raccoon, voiced by the late Len Carlson, Ralph Raccoon, voiced by Bob Dermer and Melissa Raccoon, performed by country singer Dottie West.

    The crux of the Raccoons' concerns arises when they reveal to Schaeffer the contemptuous plans of Cyril Sneer, voiced by Michael Magee, who while always an adversarial figure for the Raccoons, was particularly malevolent in this special with designs on destroying earth. The only thing hindering Cyril from obtaining his pernicious goal is a powerful star which the puppy Broo wears around his neck. Cyril is joined in this special by his pigs, which later served as his employees in the series, who are his henchmen as Cyril takes on the role of an Otto Von Bismarck-type character with his lusts for dominating the world.

    As is true in the subsequent series to come, his son Cedric Sneer has a crush on Sophia and is fraternizing with the enemy, obviously against his maniacal father's wishes. Because of their knowledge of Cyril's need to procure the star, the Raccoons and Sophia do their best to prevent this mystical object from falling into his hands. About halfway through the special, Cyril discovers a "jungle rendezvous" Cedric is having with Sophia and he follows him to a place where he can get the star. After foiling their meeting, Cyril captures the Raccoons, Sophia, Schaeffer and Broo while seizing the star en route to destroying earth. Nevertheless, Broo initiates their escape and Bert, who has always had aspirations of being a fighter pilot helps the Raccoons and the other animals escape from Cyril's clutches while destroying his fortress in the process.

    After everyone is safe, Schaeffer feels a longing to go back to Earth, so Bert, obviously now an expert at flying, drops him off. Incidentally, when Schaeffer comes to he discovers that this was all a dream sequence, and in reality Cyril was never close to destroying the earth, supposedly. Anyway, after arising from his sleep, Dan, Tommy and Julie reveal their surprise which turns out to be Broo, who Schaeffer becomes a sort of father figure to. From this time on, the animated series debuted in 1985.