Top Cat is the leader of a group of alley cats, always trying to cheat someone.




1962   1961  





Complete series cast summary:
Leo DeLyon ...  Spook / ... 30 episodes, 1961-1962
Allen Jenkins ...  Officer Dibble 30 episodes, 1961-1962
Arnold Stang ...  Top Cat 30 episodes, 1961-1962
Maurice Gosfield Maurice Gosfield ...  Benny the Ball 30 episodes, 1961-1962
Marvin Kaplan ...  Choo Choo / ... 30 episodes, 1961-1962
John Stephenson ...  Fancy-Fancy / ... 30 episodes, 1961-1962


Set in the Alleys of New York, "Top Cat" tells the story of a gang of low-life cats with their charismatic Leader, Top Cat. With ability and mischief, Top Cat will always try to get rich gambling, to eat for free, or to play jokes on someone, but he is always being watched by Officer Dibble, who is very strict and fierce with them, but in fact is a friend to all of them. Written by Tato

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He's the most tip-top!


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Did You Know?


When the cartoon was shown on British television in the 1960s and 1970s the title was changed to Boss Cat because there was a brand of cat food named Top Cat. However, the theme song and show's dialogue remained unchanged and contained countless mentions of "Top Cat", making the title change pointless. These prints were still being shown in the UK as late as 1989 by the BBC. The VHS releases from Guild Home Video in the early 80s however was allowed to use the series under it's original title and re-edited the opening and closing titles to feature the original name (albeit these were still not the officially made titles), making it rather confusing for viewers who may have bought or rented the videos some years before the late 80s repeats by the BBC under the alternate title. See more »


In the opening title song "Top Cat" (seen in every episode) the waiter should be shown in front of the lunch box on the table. His torso is behind the box until Top Cat jumps up and runs for the taxi. At that point the waiter "pops" fully in front of the lunch box. This was related by Arnold Stang on the DVD commentary and he was very annoyed (even years later!) that the studio would let such an error occur every week. See more »


Professor Zimbach: [admiring a contemporary painting] This man has artistic temperament, like Van Gogh. You know, the painter who cut off his ear and sent it to his girlfriend.
Top Cat: Oh, yeah, to ask her why he hadn't heard from her.
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Crazy Credits

The closing credits feature Top Cat returning to his alley and going to bed. The series title also appears on a billboard above the alley. See more »

Alternate Versions

UK broadcast versions replaced the last shot of the opening titles with a freeze frame of TC standing next to the title BOSS CAT on a blue background. However, he was still referred to as 'TC' and 'Top Cat' in the episodes and the title song as it was not re-dubbed. The end titles were edited to remove the 'Top Cat' billboard at the start, beginning instead with the pan down to the trash can. There was then an abrupt jump where the 'Top Cat' title normally appears to the 'A Hanna Barbera Production' title, missing out TC reaching for his hat, and jumping straight to him reaching for the lid, making his hat inexplicably appear on his head. These titles looked extremely grainy and washed out compared to the episode. The UK VHS releases from Guild/Worldvision however retained the original title, although they had the same grainy opening/closing titles. These were a slightly different edit - not having the missing footage from the end of the opening titles, the missing jump cut footage from the end credits was edited into the opening titles to keep the song fully intact, but inexplicably had TC going into bed at night following the restaurant scene. The end titles re-inserted the missing footage of TC into the end credits too, but had to freeze frame the last few seconds of the footage to make up for lost footage as the opening billboard scene (as per the broadcast version) was still missing (this kept the closing song intact also). See more »


Referenced in My Babysitter's a Vampire: Hottie Ho-Tep (2012) See more »

User Reviews

Top Cat Was My Hero
12 December 2002 | by Big Movie FanSee all my reviews

We all love Top Cat. If you didn't like Top Cat then you must be either a zombie or a robot.

In the show, Top Cat lived in a dustbin and along with his friends caused trouble for Police Officer Dibble. One thing T.C. did frequently was using the police telephone for his own calls. T.C. generally was always looking for ways to make money and mischief, the two things generally going hand in hand.

Top Cat kind of reminds me of my childhood many many years ago. I was a good child and I tended to hang around on the streets kicking balls around and trying to figure out games we could play with a stick and a tin can. There were also the constant trips to the shop to waste pocket money on cans of pop and sweets. I was never a naughty child but there always seemed to be miserable adults (of which I am now one) around trying to spoil the fun. I didn't have my own Officer Dibbles but I do remember one elderly guy who seemed to hate kids having any kind of fun.

That must be why I liked watching Top Cat as a child-because really I was looking at me and my friends in the mirror. But isn't hanging round on street corners with your friends something that kids having been doing since time began?

All in all, Top Cat was my hero and I urge you to check him out if he comes on your screen.

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Release Date:

27 September 1961 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Top Cat See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(30 episodes)

Sound Mix:



Color | Black and White (original broadcasts)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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