Saturday 27 December 2008

Top Cat Cartoon

Here's some more on the Top Cat Cartoon. This is an expansion of the Cartoon Cats page on the main website.

The Inspiration

You can tell that this cartoon cat was inspired by Phil Silvers playing Sergeant Bilko by Top Cat's voice. It is very reminiscent of Sergeant Bilko. He is pretty bossy too. In fact in the UK (when shown for the first time in 1962) he was called Boss Cat because the name Top Cat was the name of a brand of cat food.

The Creators

The Top Cat cartoon was created by that talented duo of cartoonists, William Hanna and Joseph Barbera, or do we call them animators; I am not sure. Together they worked as Hanna-Barbera Cartoons, Inc., and Hanna-Barbera Enterprises, Inc. They won many awards and created other well known cartoon characters. When Hanna and Barbera formed the company in 1944 they were working as animation directors at MGM.

The Characters

Top Cat is a bicolor cat technically, at least. He is white and yellow. I don't know of any yellow cats in real life but some approach it. He is a bad boy really, a con cat but has a likable side to his character. He is laid back and is the leader of this motley gang of anthropomorphic feral cats. He is though simply surviving under difficult circumstances and uses all the ploys he can to get on. He tends to overdo the motivational talk, "Go like the wind boy, go, go, go, Mercury -- fly, fly!"

Benny the Ball is Top Cat's chief aide and right hand man. He is rotund of shape, a little slow but thinks straight. He is based (quite closely, it seems) on the actor who provided Benny's voice, the actor Maurice Gosfield (see photo and see rationale for publishing it here at base of post), who played opposite Phil Silvers in Sergeant Bilko.

Choo Choo is a tall pink cat with the eyes of a Siamese cat. He is sometimes second in command. He is also stupid (no criticism meant).

The Brain is not actually brainy. He is in charge of the little money they might briefly possess and he is orange (see a great Orange Persian cat).

Fancy-Fancy is a smooth talking cat who likes to chat up the girls. His character and voice is based on Gary Grant.

Spook look like Fancy-Fancy and is a sweet talking cat with a "beatnik" character.

Office Dribble is the poor policeman who has to deal with Top Cat and his gang as their home area in within the officers beat.

The Series

The Top Cat cartoon series started in September 27, 1961 and ran until April 18, 1962. There were 30 episodes of the Top Cat cartoon on the ABC network:
  1. "Hawaii Here We Come" 1961 -- see episode 3 of this above.
  2. "Maharajah of Pookajee" Oct 4, 1961
  3. "All That Jazz" Oct 11, 1961
  4. "The $1,000,000 Derby" Oct 1961
  5. "The Violin Player" (Oct 25, 1961)
  6. "The Missing Heir" (Nov 1, 1961)
  7. "Top Cat Falls In Love" (Nov 8, 1961)
  8. "A Visit From Mother" (Nov 15, 1961)
  9. "Naked Town" (Nov 22, 1961)
  10. "Sergeant Top Cat" (Nov 29, 1961)
  11. "Choo-Choo's Romance" (Dec 6, 1961)
  12. "The Unscratchables" (Dec 13, 1961)
  13. "Rafeefleas" (Dec 20, 1961)
  14. "The Tycoon" (Dec 27, 1961)
  15. "The Long Hot Winter" (Jan 3, 1962)
  16. "The Case of the Absent Anteater" (Jan 10, 1962)
  17. "T.C. Minds the Baby" (Jan 17, 1962)
  18. "Farewell, Mr. Dibble" (Jan 24, 1962)
  19. "The Grand Tour" (Jan 31, 1962)
  20. "The Golden Fleecing" (Feb 7, 1962)
  21. "Space Monkey" (Feb 14, 1962)
  22. "The Late T.C." (Feb 21, 1962)
  23. "Dibble's Birthday" (Feb 28, 1962)
  24. "Choo-Choo Goes Ga-Ga" (Mar 7, 1962)
  25. "King for a Day" (Mar 14, 1962)
  26. "The Con Men" (Mar 21, 1962)
  27. "Dibble Breaks the Record" (Mar 28, 1962)
  28. "Dibble Sings Again" (Apr 4, 1962)
  29. "Griswald" (Apr 11, 1962)
  30. "Dibble's Double" (Apr 18, 1962)
(List reproduced under Wikipedia® license)

Click on this link to see the Wikipedia® License src: Wikipedia® published under GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version, November 2002 Copyright (C) 2000,2001,2002 Free Software Foundation, Inc. 51 Franklin St, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301 USA - - no other conditions to the license are added.

Top Cat Cartoon -- HB Logo -- The author of the Hanna-Barbera logo based on the actual logo is: The Man in Question. It is considered by the user to be in the public domain as it is not original enough.

Top Cat Cartoon -- Rationale for publishing copyrighted picture if Maurice Gosfield: I adopt the Wikipedia rationale with the exception and addition that this website if based in the UK and is for charitable purposes.

Top Cat Cartoon to Cartoon Cats

1 comment:

  1. Great Cartoon that i have watched it when i was a kid.


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