The Duck Factory

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The Duck Factory
The Duck Factory VHS Cover.jpg
The Duck Factory cover
Created by Allan Burns
Herbert Klynn
Starring Jim Carrey
Country of origin USA
No. of episodes 13
Production
Running time 30 min (per episode)
Production company(s) MTM Productions
Distributor 20th Television
Broadcast
Original channel NBC
Original run April 12, 1984 – July 11, 1984

The Duck Factory is a 1984 NBC television series produced by MTM Enterprises that is perhaps most notable for being Jim Carrey's first lead role in a Hollywood production.

The show was co-created by Allan Burns. The premiere episode introduces Skip Tarkenton (Carrey), a somewhat naive and optimistic young man who has come to Hollywood looking for a job as a cartoonist. When he arrives at a low-budget animation company called Buddy Winkler Productions, he finds out Buddy Winkler has just died, and the company desperately needs new blood. So Skip gets an animation job at the firm, which is nicknamed "The Duck Factory" as their main cartoon is "The Dippy Duck Show".

Other Duck Factory employees seen regularly on the show were man-of-a-thousand-cartoon voices Wally Wooster (played by real-life cartoon voice artist Don Messick); rival cartoon voice Dippy Duck (played by real life cartoon voice artist Frank Welker); comedy writer Marty Fenneman (played by real-life comedy writer Jay Tarses); artists Brooks Carmichael and Roland Culp, editor Andrea Lewin, and business manager Aggie Aylesworth. Buddy Winkler Productions was now owned by his young, ditzy widow, Mrs Sheree Winkler (Teresa Ganzel), who had been married to Buddy for all of three weeks before his death.

The Duck Factory lasted thirteen episodes; it premiered April 12, 1984. The show initially aired at 9:30 on Thursday nights, directly after Cheers, and replaced Buffalo Bill on NBC's schedule. Jay Tarses, an actor on The Duck Factory, had been the co-creator and executive producer of Buffalo Bill, which had its final network telecast on Thursday, April 5, 1984.

The show changed timeslots in June, moving to Wednesdays at 9:30. The last original episode of The Duck Factory was broadcast on July 11, 1984.

Cast[edit]

Home video[edit]

In 1995, two VHS videocassettes were released in the United States, one containing the first three episodes, the other the last three episodes. The two volumes were released in the United Kingdom in 1997(Pictured above), slightly expanded to the first four and the last four episodes of the series (which had never been broadcast in the UK). A full-season VHS or DVD set has yet to be released.

Episode guide[edit]

Title Directed by: Written by: Air date
1 "Goodbye Buddy, Hello Skip" Gene Reynolds Allan Burns April 12, 1984 (1984-04-12)
Skip Tarkenton finds his dream of becoming an animator coming true a lot sooner than he expected when he arrives L.A.
2 "Filling Buddy's Shoes" Rod Daniel John Steven Owen April 19, 1984 (1984-04-19)
Someone must fill Buddy's shoes as the Dippy Duck showrunner. But who?
3 "The Annies" Victor Lobl Barbara Hall April 26, 1984 (1984-04-26)
A series of mishaps arise when the staff attend the Annies, where Buddy is to receive a posthumous award.
4 "No Good Deed" Harry Winer Steve Kline May 3, 1984 (1984-05-03)
Skip learns that no good deed goes unpunished when he gives Ginger a job she doesn't deserve and Marty's script a kinder review than it deserves.
5 "The Way We Weren't" Victor Lobl Katherine Green May 10, 1984 (1984-05-10)
Aggie plans to attend a reunion with her old Navy pals, but when she can't scrounge a date, she asks Skip to accompany her.
6 "Can We Talk?" Peter Baldwin John Steven Owen May 17, 1984 (1984-05-17)
Marty's plagiarism becomes Skip's problem.
7 "The Education of Mrs. Winkler"
"The Education of S*h*e*r*e*e W*i*n*k*l*e*r"
Rod Daniel Jordan Moffet May 24, 1984 (1984-05-24)
In hopes of being smarter, Sheree decides to finally get her high school diploma, and Brooks gives her a helping hand — and a little something extra.
8 "Ordinary People, Too" Kim Friedman Bob Stevens June 6, 1984 (1984-06-06)
Skip helps come up with the cash to fund Andrea's film project, yet doesn't get the thanks one might think.
9 "It Didn't Happen One Night" Burt Brinckerhoff Jordan Moffet June 13, 1984 (1984-06-13)
The gang begin to suspect that Skip and Andrea are romantically involved. Meanwhile, Marty isn't happy about his friend's new girlfriend — Sheree.
10 "The Duck Stops Here" Victor Lobl John Steven Owen June 20, 1984 (1984-06-20)
Wally decides to throw his hat into the Shakespeare ring after his Dippy Duck voice escapes him.
11 "The Children's Half-Hour" Rod Daniel Thad Mumford,
Dan Wilcox
June 27, 1984 (1984-06-27)
It's Children's Night at the Apollo when Brooks' son and Wally's daughter both want to further their artistic careers — to the joy of Brooks and the dismay of Wally.
12 "You Always Love the One You Hurt" Jim Drake Thad Mumford,
Dan Wilcox
July 4, 1984 (1984-07-04)
Roland is pressured to quit the animation business and follow in his father's footsteps — as a dentist. Meanwhile, the staff consider changing the show when a parents group vote it one of the most violent kids' programs on TV.
13 "Call Me Responsible" Gene Reynolds Stuart Silverman July 11, 1984 (1984-07-11)
The ball is in Skip's hands when the show needs someone to fight for it at the network, or it will be cancelled.

External links[edit]