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The Pink Panther is an heroic, moral cartoon cat with pink fur and the manners of an English aristocrat. He only becomes flustered or angry at obtuse or offensive humans who try to disrupt his existence, or at troublesome gadgets, rodents, or insects. In most of his cartoons, he stumbles into a difficult situation and stoically endeavors to make the best of it. Episodes of this series feature three theatrical cartoons, two with the Pink Panther, and one featuring the Inspector, a cartoon version of the accident-prone, bumbling French detective, Inspector Clouseau, played in movies by Peter Sellers. The Inspector is often assisted by a Spanish gendarme, Sergeant Deux-Deux, and together they fallibly battle villains of all shapes and sizes in various parts of the world, always on the orders of the long-suffering Surete Commissioner. Written by
Kevin McCorry <email@example.com>
Spun off from the opening titles of the hit movie with Peter Sellers and starting out as a series of theatrical cartoons, The Pink Panther came to TV in 1969 and became a long running cartoon hit for NBC. It ran under a number of titles for seven years until ABC gave the panther another life but it lasted only one season.
What I liked the most about the show were the Pink Panther cartoons. Done completely without dialogue (with a couple of exceptions), the episodes relied on sight gags and visual humor and to me that was one of the keys to the show's success.They were also very funny. There was one character who appeared in almost every episode, a little white man that my brother sometimes referred to as "Thing." Here's one mystery that's probably never been solved. What was the name of the little white guy in the Pink Panther cartoons? There were also a number of supporting segments throughout the show's tun. The two that were my favorites were "The Ant and the Aardvark" and "Misterjaw." To me, "The ant and the Aardvark" was a variation on tom and Jerry and the Road Runner cartoons as the aardvark tried to catch one ant for a meal. John Byner showed his versatility as a voice-over artist by portraying both characters. As for "Misterjaw", which capitalized on the success of the movie "Jaws", Arte Johnson, using pretty much the same voice as the military character on "Laugh-IN" was outstanding as the title character. His sidekick, Catfish was voiced by the same guy who voiced "Top Cat" in the 60s, Arnold Stang.
I also remember "The Inspector", a pint-sized version of Seller's Clouseau character. Pat Harrington Jr. did well as the inspector and it showed his ability to handle the French accent.
Later in the run, NBC made history when it expanded The Pink Panther to 90 minutes. Although this version wasn't a success, it started a trend for longer cartoon shows when ABC expanded Scooby-Doo to two hours and CBS expanded "The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Hour to 90 minutes.
The one constant that went through each of the Pink Panther cartoons was the theme composed by Henry Mancini. It added a jazzier touch to the show's soundtrack. I had a lot of memories of watching The Pink Panther on Saturday mornings and it got me, like many other fans to "Think Pink."
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