Lancelot Link: Secret Chimp (TV Series 1970– ) Poster

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Everyone thought I was crazy...
Luckysmine26 September 2001
When I described this show to people, they gave me the look over. NO ONE believed me when I said there was a show about a chimp in a high rise building, wearing a grey suit with a red tie, sitting in a leather chair, speaking English. And another girl chimp in a dress, also speaking English (Yeah, would YOU have believed me?).

I remember Nickelodeon briefly showed it, and it's one of the shows that I vividly remember when I watched back in the good ol' days of Nick with "You Can't Do that On Television," and "Double Dare" (aka the 1980s). I remember it either came on before, or after "The Monkees." I highly enjoyed this, because the chimps were talking! And it was so cool how they got them to interact, and I guess "act" human. It was so funny. And I was like, 4 or 5 or something. So basically anything that came on I got a kick out of.

I have searched high and low for information on this show. It has taken me forever to figure out what the title was. I heard it was on TV Land, but I don't think it is anymore. Everytime I see someone doing a "chimp" thing where they have clothes on, I totally think of this show. I finally have closure on it now. I know I'm not crazy.

If you have a chance...look around for it on TV! The one scene I described is the only thing I can remember. If I enjoyed it when I was 4, then it has to be good, something good for the kids.
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Call him Bonzo... James Bonzo
koconnor-12 August 2002
The earliest kids' show I can recall watching with any regularity, and probably still one of my favorite guilty pleasures.

In the grand tradition of "The Man from Uncle", "Secret Agent", and "The Avengers", comes this late 60s spy series, with a twist.

The twist? It was done ENTIRELY with live chimps acting out the roles of the characters, with voiceover artists providing the dialog. It was incredibly funny watching the chimps talk, brandish weapons, drive cars, ski, and doing just about anything we higher-order primates are capable of... and probably with more sincere acting!

Lancelot Link is a brilliant (though slightly inept) secret agent with the Agency to Prevent Evil (APE) fighting to thwart the evil schemes of CHUMP - a renegade syndicate bent on world domination, run by a vicious Baron, and his horde of evil-doers. Trotting around the globe waging a covert war against CHUMP, Link is aided in his battle against the forces of evil by his trusty lady agent sidekick, Matta Hairy, as they carry out the orders of the venerable Commander Darwin (who usually runs afoul of Link's attempts to be helpful).

The show provides a big tip of the hat to "Get Smart", which it parodies mercilessly (a spoof of a spy spoof!). Veteran character actor Bernie Kopell (Conrad Siegfried on Get Smart, and Doc on The Love Boat) even reads the role of the villainous Baron in all his "Goot Evenink Shmart!" nastiness. The episodes were always filled with simian puns (a rock group called "The Evolution Revolution", etc.) The Baron's Rogues Gallery of Bad Guys included the despicable strong monkey, Creto, the Hong Kong-based Dragon Woman, and the despicable Dr. Strangemind.

The real fun of this piece is that after a few minutes, you get so involved in the plot and the action that you almost forget you are watching a group of live monkeys performing tricks. You really begin to believe that they can talk and do all that other stuff. I loved it as a kid, and years later when a local affiliate ran a few reruns, I loved it as a teenager. I imagine if I see it again on cable, I will love it as an adult.

This series was semi-recreated years later on Fox with a series of bumpers for their Saturday morning series, called "Dynamo Duck" - a secret agent baby duckling thwarting the evil plans of guinea pigs, lab mice, and other small creatures. A little hipper and edgier than Link, but it's Link that everyone remembers.
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Who doesn't love chimps?
David V1 May 2002
I remember watching this show on Nickelodian, and I loved it. Think "Get Smart" done entirely with chimps. I still every once in a while see the villain character used in a promo for some tv station, I think it may be ESPN, but I'm not certain. Anyway, the stories were always funny to begin with, but made even funnier by using chimps as the actors. They never showed any humans, and you never missed them. If you find this show anywhere, check it out. It's definitely worth it!
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Chimpies !
RealLiveClaude15 April 2008
I remember this one when it was passing on the french CBC Network. A good and funny french-Canadian dubbing (among those voices: Ronald France, Benoit Marleau and Elizabeth Chouvalidze) who made those chimpanzees much more funnier.

However, it's this spoof of all spy and psychedelic series (James Bond, the Man from U.N.C.L.E. and the Monkees among others) which makes this series worth to watch. It maybe bad and dumb for others, but leave your seriousness at the door when you'll watch Lance and Mata Hairi make the move on the Baron, the Dragon Lady and all the CHUMP villains...

A.P.E. rules again. And like the Baron says at the end of each show: we'll meet again ! P.S. and that Ed Sullivan spoof, it is so funny !
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Lance Link,, Secret Chimp, whatcha gonna do when that Dr. Strangemind comes after you?
bcolquho2 February 2005
I remember this show. I really do. I was a kid in 1970 when Lance Link: Secret Chimp went on, and sadly, off, the air. Even after it was cancelled, it was still on in reruns on Saturday mornings. Lancelot Link was a pop star by day. He played in a rock band called The Evolution Revolution. (A good question for a JEOPARDY! Rhyme Time category.) He was also a secret agent for a spy agency called APE. (The Agency to Prevent Evil.) Lance's two enemies were Dr. Strangemind and the Dragon Lady. I loved it at first but as the show went on, I didn't buy it. I mean chimps playing musical instruments? Yeah, right! Lance Link, Secret Chimp, whatcha gonna do when that Dr. Strangemind comes after you?
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raysond13 September 2002
When I asked people about this seldom seen and forgotten show,I noticed I get a strange look. However,I vividity remember this show as a child back in the early 70's when it was shown mostly on Saturday Mornings. This was a show that had a combination of "The Monkees" mixed throughly with key elements of Robert Vaughn's spy spoof,"The Man From U.N.C.L.E" (in which you had a chimpanzee in the Robert Vaughn role and a man in a gorilla suit played the head agent in the Leo G. Carroll role)for good measure and believe me it didn't last long when it premiered in the fall of 1970. The series was cancelled that same year.

It may have been fun back in its heyday but executives at the network as well as kids weren't buying it one bit since it was pathetically stupid as one of the worst children's TV shows of all time--second to another monkey show called "Me And The Chimp"(case in point-kids were watching it). The show back in its day was part of ABC-TV's(which the show originally ran)grand and sometimes lame lineup of live action and cartoon shows which were mostly shown on Saturday Mornings under the supervision of the head of children's programming for ABC at the time--the late producer-animator Chuck Jones which in point had shows like during his tenture were "The Curiousity Shop","Make A Wish","The Funky Phantom","Goober and the Ghost Chasers","The Jackson Five",not to mention the animated shows like "Lassie's Rescue Rangers" and he also

had under his belt "The Superfriends"(the first two seasons only) and his own short lived series called "Chuck Jones Presents".

PS-THe producer of Lancelot Link was Alan Landsburg who produced several shows under his tenture which included the Leonard Nimoy documentary "In Search Of...","That's Incredible!",and the sitcoms "Gimme A Break",and "Kate and Allie".
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The craziest, most psychedelic children's show ever!
Alwood17 February 2007
I was a small child when this ran during its one season in 1970, and it had a profound effect on me, although at the time I had no idea why. While some people argue that "H.R. Puffinstuff" was the most psychedelic, drug-fueled kids' show of all-time (and of that period), I would say it comes in a close second to "L.L."! Watching "L.L" now, you can almost picture the haze of pot smoke and LSD trips the creators and writers of this show must have gotten their ideas from! It's like a stoner's PhD thesis! "L.L." is a surrealistic masterpiece worthy of Salvador Dali (wonder if the old boy ever watched it? Now THAT would be something to behold!). It's easy to understand why it only ran for one season, and equally easy to see how it has achieved the cult status it enjoys today. Truly a time capsule of the late 60s/early 70s, thank goodness that it's now preserved for posterity on DVD! Children and heads of the world unite!
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Long Live Lancelot Link!!
jgray-1815 March 2006
I absolutely loved this show when it came out in 1970, and I would be thrilled to have the episodes on DVD. It was clever, campy and utterly silly - qualities which some viewers may not fully appreciate. How could you not laugh at Ed Simian and the bad banana jokes? The parody of the spy-show genre was dead-on. Exotic locations (chimps skiing is a sight one never forgets), cool gadgets, villains with accents - this show had it all.

Of course, in today's world the chimps would be computer-generated so as not to upset the animal rights folks, and therefore the charm of the original would be totally lost.
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Silly talking ape shtick -
jonesy74-127 September 2005
Amusing at first... got old real fast. I thought it was cute for about ten minutes. It was inevitable that someone would create a series where Chimps acted and talked like humans (after all, Mules and Horses had talked in movies and on t.v., hadn't they? Why not Chimpanzees?).

Mel Blanc supplied the Humphrey Bogart voice for Link. What really got to me was Lance's Chimp girlfriend, Mata Hairy(?), with her smarmy voice bleating out, "Laaaanshalot," a la Edith Bunker.

It aired on Saturday afternoons in my town where the t.v. would be running but the family was involved in other pursuits and giving it momentary nods of attention.

Plot? What plot? Cute monkeys acting like a detective and his secretary/girlfriend. Why pay attention to a plot?

A lot of thought and creativity went into the show but it just couldn't hold my attention. I'm glad for those who liked it and were entertained by it.
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Not missing link...
Puck-2013 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This was actually a show about torturing animals; in this case, chimpanzee min-keys (as Clouseau would say). I remember this show when it first came out. My brother loved it; I thought it was sick stuff. Really sick stuff. I knew it was a satire on shows such as Get Smart!, but it made no difference. I simply watched in horror at the unnatural things they did to those hairy critters They would dress up these poor chimps in the most uncomfortable looking clothes and force them to do outlandish things, all while flapping their lips. Often they would do things like drop a barrel of bananas on their heads as they tried to scamper away. Seriously. If you watched the chimps closely, you could see that they were not amused. I don't mind seeing a chimp running around after Johnny Weissmuller, but this was over the top, especially when they did stuff that obviously scared the living crap out of those chimps (I don't envy the dude who had to change the chimp's clothing).
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