Mr. Squiggle from the 1990s
|Also known as||Mr. Squiggle & Friends|
|Genre||Children's television series, Science fiction|
|Created by||Norman Hetherington|
|Voices of||Norman Hetherington|
|Country of origin||Australia|
|No. of seasons||41|
|Running time||30 minutes|
|Picture format||Black & White (1959-1975)
|Audio format||Mono (1959-1979)
|Original run||1 July 1959 – 9 July 1999|
Norman Hetherington 
Hetherington voiced and operated all of the show's puppets, while his wife Margaret wrote the scripts. The last episode went to air just over 40 years later on 9 July 1999.
Mr. Squiggle 
Mr. Squiggle (the character) was a marionette with a pencil for a nose, who visited his friends from his home at 93 Crater Crescent on the Moon, flying in his pet rocket (named Rocket). In every episode he would create several pictures from "squiggles" sent in by children from around the country.
Mr. Squiggle was helped by a human female assistant in all of the show's incarnations; they included Miss Gina (Gina Curtis), Miss Pat (Pat Lovell), Miss Jane (Jane Fennell), and later series featured Roxanne (Roxanne Kimmorley) and Rebecca (Rebecca Hetherington, Hetherington's daughter).
The show has been presented in many formats, from five minute slots to a one-and-a-half hour variety show featuring other performers, and has had several name changes, originally airing as Mr. Squiggle and Friends.
Other puppet characters that appeared in the show included:
- Blackboard, the grumpy blackboard that Mr. Squiggle used for an easel, whose catchcries were "Oh Hurrry uuup" and "Hmmph" and double "Hmmph". And "Booorrriing".
- Gus the Snail, who had a TV for a shell and later, a flower pot.
- Bill the Steam Shovel, who liked to tell corny jokes and belched steam out of his "nose" when he laughed.
The basic premise of the show remained the same: children wrote in with their "squiggles" and Mr. Squiggle would turn them into a recognisable drawing by connecting lines with his pencil nose. More often than not, the picture would be drawn upside down (Hetherington manipulated the puppet from above by viewing the drawing upside down), and then Mr. Squiggle would gleefully declare: "Upside down! Upside down!" – asking his assistant to turn the picture the right way up and reveal the completed drawing.
Mr Squiggle was a cheery, scatter-brained character who would often be distracted and would occasionally go for "space-walks", and his assistant would need to calm him down to get him to focus on the task of drawing.
After the show ceased production, the entire cast of puppets from 'Mister Squiggle and Friends' were owned by the show's creator, Norman Hetherington. They have been loaned for display at exhibitions, such as at the National Film and Sound Archive and as part of the "50 Years of TV" exhibition at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in 2007. Hetherington and his puppets appeared on the ABC's Collectors TV series in 2010.
Death of Norman Hetherington 
On 6 December 2010, Norman Hetherington died in Sydney after a long illness. This prompted an outpouring of tributes in newspapers from many generations who had grown up with this long running children's television show. Mr Hetherington is survived by his wife, son, daughter and two grandchildren.
See also 
- Timeline – 50 Years of Kids TV, Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
- Quinn, (2001).
- "Mr Squiggle rockets to 50th birthday". ABC Online. 2009-07-01.
- . Australian Times. 2010-12-07 http://www.australiantimes.co.uk/news/VIDEO--Tribute-to-Mr-Squiggle-creator-dies-aged-89. Missing or empty
- ABC TV programme: Australian Story: 30 October 1996: "Mr. Squiggle".
- ABC TV programme: The Collectors: 2010: Episode 21: (Friday 30 July 2010): "Mr. Squiggle".
- Anon, "Wonderbox", The Australian Women's Weekly, (Wednesday, 28 October 1964), p.17.
- Anon, "Prime Minister gets Squiggled", The Herald Sun, Thursday, 28 May 2009.
- Anon, "Man behind Mr Squiggle dies", ABC News, Tuesday, 7 December 2010.
- Bradshaw, R.,"Norman Hetherington 1921 - 2010 (Eulogy)", O.P.E.N., No.11, (December 2010), pp.2-4.
- Design and Art Australia Online Biography: Norman Hetherington.
- Foyle, L., "Creative Mind Thrilled Children", The Sydney Morning Herald, Wednesday, 8 December 2010.
- Guss, Naomi, "Australian puppetry - Mr. Squiggle", School of Puppetry, Monday, 6 December, 2010).
- Johnson, C., "Award-winning Stuff from Mr. Squiggle", The Sydney Morning Herald, (Monday, 11 June 1990), p.3.
- McDonald, T., "Mr Squiggle's creator dies", A.M. (ABC Local Radio), Tuesday, 7 December 2010.
- Miller, A., "Squiggle: an ABC survivor", The Age: Green Guide, (Thursday, 5 July 1979), p.7.
- Miner, J., "Mr. Squiggle is still drawing the children, The Sydney Morning Herald, (Wednesday, 11 July, 1984), p.17.
- Morris, J., "Squiggle's friends make a fine team", The Age: Green Guide, (Thursday, 5 April 1984), p.4.
- Mosman Art Gallery: Tribute to Norman Hetherington, 10 December 2010.
- Musgrove, N., "Many Happy Returns to Mr. Squiggle", The Australian Women's Weekly, (Wednesday, 24 July 1974), p.57.
- O.P.E.N., Theme Issue: Norman Hetherington OAM, O.P.E.N. (Oz Puppetry Email Newsletter), No.11, December 2010.
- Panozzo, S., "Norman Hetherington: The 2009 Stanleys: The Jim Russell Award for Outstanding Contributions to Cartooning", Inkspot, No.60, (Summer 2009), pp.26-27.
- Perkins, M., "Mr Squiggle rockets in", 720 ABC Perth, 4 April 2008.
- Quinn, Dhana, "Five things you didn't know about . . . Mr Squiggle", "The Age", (Thursday, 17 May 2001), p.2.
- Samandar, L., Puppetmaster draws final masterpiece, The Daily Telegraph, Tuesday, 7 December 2010.
- Shearer, G., "Thank you Mr Squiggle for the moon", (Thursday, 9 December 2010.
- Toshack, M., "Pulling the strings in a magic world", The Sydney Morning Herald, (Wednesday, 24 November 1971, p.20.
- Tuohy, Wendy, "Mr. Squiggle: Magic on a String", The Age Green Guide, (Thursday, 24 October 1996), p.10.
- Vasek, L., "End of the line for Mr. Squiggle animator", The Australian, Tuesday, 7 December 2010.