Felix the Cat (TV series)

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Felix the Cat
Felix the Cat TV series title.jpg
Genre Cartoon series, Adventure, Comedy
Created by Joe Oriolo
Voices of Jack Mercer[1]
Theme music composer Winston Sharples
Composer(s) Winston Sharples
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 5
No. of episodes 126
Production
Producer(s) Joe Oriolo
Running time 30 min.
Production company(s) Felix the Cat Productions
Paramount Cartoon Studios
Trans-Lux
Distributor NBCUniversal Television Distribution
Release
Original network Syndication
Original release October 2, 1958 – May 16, 1962
Chronology
Related shows The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat (1995–1997)

Felix the Cat is a television series featuring the cartoon character Felix the Cat.[2][3]

In 1954, Otto Messmer retired from the Felix daily newspaper strips, and his assistant Joe Oriolo (the co-creator of Casper the Friendly Ghost) took over. Oriolo struck a deal with Felix's new owner to begin a new series of Felix cartoons for television. Oriolo starred Felix in 260 television cartoons produced by Famous Studios which was renamed to Paramount Cartoon Studios, and distributed by Trans-Lux.

Like the Van Beuren studio before, Oriolo gave Felix a more domesticated and pedestrian personality, geared more toward children, and introduced now-familiar elements such as Felix's "Magic Bag of Tricks", a satchel that could assume the shape and characteristics of anything Felix wanted. Those cartoons were divided into two parts, because when Felix was in distress, or in a jam, the announcer would intone before the concluding episode: "What will happen to Felix, in the next exciting episode, in the Adventures of Felix the Cat?"

Background[edit]

The show did away with Felix's previous supporting cast and introduced many new characters. These characters were performed by voice actor Jack Mercer. Oriolo's plots revolve around the unsuccessful attempts of the antagonists to steal Felix's Magic Bag, though in an unusual twist, these antagonists are occasionally depicted as Felix's friends as well. While the cartoons were a ratings success, critics have dismissed them as paling in comparison to the earlier Sullivan-Messmer works. Oriolo aimed the cartoons at children. The series used limited animation (owing to a limited budget) and simplistic storylines.[4]

This TV series also helped introduce the character of Felix the Cat to audiences in Japan. A Japanese language dub of the series aired on NHK in 1960 and was rerun three years later on Fuji TV. Four decades later, Felix would be the star of his own anime series.

Characters[edit]

Felix the Cat 
The main character and star of the show. He has many adventures with his secret bag of tricks that often helps in dangerous situations. Two different patterns were used for the magic bag, one is the earlier version pattern that is a dot and cross pattern. The latter series bag was a houndstooth pattern that replaced the dot and cross. All the episodes having the houndstooth pattern are missing from the market place.

No matter what the situation, he almost always ends up laughing. A few of the episodes end with Felix on the losing end without the laughter, or his other signature line, "Righty-o!"

The Professor 
He is Felix's archenemy or foil and, in most appearances, is trying to seize the Magic Bag of Tricks. He has a very amusing speech impediment and is quite eccentric. He is depicted as a mad scientist, very intelligent, yet very obsessed. He attempts many tricks such as the use of his inventions and many disguises to get Felix's magic bag, but always winds up failing in the end. In some episodes where his nephew Poindexter is involved, the Professor becomes a reluctant ally of Felix, particularly when they battle the Master Cylinder. In some of the episodes, when the professor gives up on his episodic schemes, he intones with the words: "Oh, what's the use!!!!!"
Poindexter 
He is the nerdy young nephew of the Professor. He is depicted as a stereotypical scientist; he is very intelligent and always wears thick Coke-bottle glasses, a lab coat, and a mortarboard. A button on the chest of his lab coat acts as a control for whatever device the plot calls for. Despite the Professor being his uncle, he is also one of Felix's best friends. Whenever he talks to Felix, he refers to him as "Mr. Felix".
Rock Bottom 
The Professor's bumbling sidekick (a bulldog who walks and dresses like a human being) who tries to help the Professor steal Felix's Magic Bag. Rock Bottom's full name is Rock Bottom Age. He occasionally works for Master Cylinder. Like the Professor, in some of the episodes, when Rock Bottom's schemes fail, he intones with the words: "Oh, what's the use!!!!!"
Master Cylinder 
An evil, cylindrical robot who first appeared in the 1960 cartoon "Master Cylinder-King of the Moon". He is always trying to kidnap Poindexter so that he can use his intellect to build weapons and equipment. It is revealed that he was once a pupil of the Professor at an academy until an explosion destroyed his original body.
Martin the Martian 
The good Martian who always helps Felix and his friends whenever they are in a space jam.
General Clang 
The evil general in space who also wants the rocket formula in order to destroy the Earth,
Vavoom 
A small, unassuming and friendly Inuit whose only vocalization is a (literally) Earth-shattering shout of his own name "VAVOOM!" (but who is powerless if his mouth was taped shut). He first appeared in "Felix and Vavoom".

Theme song[edit]

The program is also remembered for its distinctive theme song. It was written by Winston Sharples and performed by 1950s big band singer Ann Bennett.[5]

Episodes[edit]

Episodes and Title
(Note: each episode was originally presented in two parts)
  1. "The Magic Bag" -- 1959.10.02
  2. "Into Outer Space" -- 1959.10.05
  3. "Abominable Snowman" -- 1959.10.06
  4. "Felix Out West" -- 1959.10.07
  5. "Felix the Cat Suit" -- 1959.10.08
  6. "Electronic Brainwasher" -- 1959.10.09
  7. "Do-It-Yourself Monster Book" -- 1959.10.12
  8. "Blubberino the Whale" -- 1959.10.13
  9. "Ghostly Concert" -- 1959.10.14
  10. "Captain No-Kiddin'" -- 1959.10.15
  11. "Felix in Egypt" -- 1959.10.16
  12. "Detective Thinking Hat" -- 1959.10.19
  13. "Balloon Blower Machine" -- 1959.10.20
  14. "Friday the 13th" -- 1959.10.21
  15. "Stone Making Machine" -- 1959.10.22
  16. "Penelope the Elephant" -- 1959.10.23
  17. "The Money Tree" -- 1959.10.26
  18. "Oil and Indians Don't Mix" -- 1959.10.27
  19. "The Glittering Jewels" -- 1959.10.28
  20. "The Gold Car and County Fair" -- 1959.10.29
  21. "Sheriff Felix vs. the Gas Cloud" -- 1959.10.30
  22. "Felix's Gold Mine" -- 1959.11.02
  23. "How to Steal a Gold Mine?" -- 1959.11.03
  24. "Private Eye Felix and Pierre Mustache" -- 1959.11.04
  25. "The Gold Fruit Tree" -- 1959.11.05
  26. "The Flying Saucer" -- 1959.11.06
  27. "Felix Baby-Sits" -- 1959.11.09
  28. "Instant Money" -- 1959.11.10
  29. "Master Cylinder – King of the Moon" -- 1959.11.11
  30. "The Invisible Professor" -- 1959.11.12
  31. "Venus and the Master Cylinder" -- 1959.11.13
  32. "The Termites of 1960" -- 1960.01.04
  33. "Moo Moo Island Oysters" -- 1960.01.05
  34. "The Mouse and Felix" -- 1960.01.06
  35. "King Neptune's S.O.S." -- 1960.01.07
  36. "Relax-a-Lawn Chair" -- 1960.01.08
  37. "The African Diamond Affair" -- 1960.01.11
  38. "Felix's Prize Garden" -- 1960.01.12
  39. "Finally, the Magic Bag Is Mine!" -- 1960.01.13
  40. "Felix and the Rhinoceros" -- 1960.01.14
  41. "Felix-Finder and the Ghost Town" -- 1960.01.15
  42. "Snoopascope, a Magic Bag of Tricks" -- 1960.01.18
  43. "Stone Age Felix" -- 1960.01.19
  44. "The Gold Silkworms" -- 1960.01.20
  45. "Felix and Vavoom" -- 1960.01.21
  46. "The Jubilee Dime" -- 1960.01.22
  47. "Movie Star Felix" -- 1960.01.25
  48. "Youth Water" -- 1960.01.26
  49. "Game Warden Felix" -- 1960.01.27
  50. "Master Cylinder Captures Poindexter" -- 1960.01.28
  51. "Atomic Drive Explosion of Master Cylinder" -- 1960.01.29
  52. "Supertoy" -- 1960.02.01
  53. "The Jewel Bird" -- 1960.02.02
  54. "The Atomic Rocket Fuel" -- 1960.02.03
  55. "The Hairy Berry Bush" -- 1960.02.04
  56. "General Clang and the Secret Rocket Fuel" -- 1960.02.05
  57. "The Rajah's Elephants" -- 1960.02.08
  58. "The Exchanging Machine" -- 1960.02.09
  59. "The Leprechaun" -- 1960.02.10
  60. "The Master Cylinder's Spacegram" -- 1960.02.11
  61. "The Leprechaun's Gold" -- 1960.02.12
  62. "Felix and the Mid-Evil Ages" -- 1960.02.15
  63. "The Capturing of the Leprechaun King" -- 1960.02.16
  64. "Martin the Martian Meets Felix the Cat" -- 1960.02.17
  65. "The Professor's Committed No Crime!" -- 1960.02.18
  66. "The Martian Rescue" -- 1960.02.19
  67. "The Portable Closet" -- 1960.02.22
  68. "Redbeard the Pirate" -- 1960.02.23
  69. "A Museum, The Professor, and Rock Bottom" -- 1960.02.24
  70. "The Professor's Instant Changer" -- 1960.02.25
  71. "The Vacation Mirage" -- 1960.02.26
  72. "Cat-Napped" -- 1960.02.29
  73. "The Sea Monster and Felix" -- 1960.03.01
  74. "The Diamond Tree" -- 1960.03.02
  75. "King of the Leprechauns" -- 1960.03.03
  76. "The Magic Apples" -- 1960.03.04
  77. "Oysters and Starfishes" -- 1960.03.07
  78. "The Haunted House" -- 1960.03.08
  79. "Gold Digger Vavoom" -- 1960.03.09
  80. "The Wizard and Sir Rock" -- 1960.03.10
  81. "The Coal Diamonds" -- 1960.03.11
  82. "Out West with Big Brownie" -- 1960.03.14
  83. "Love-Sick Squirt Gun" -- 1960.03.15
  84. "Mechanical Felix" -- 1960.03.16
  85. "The Ski Jump" -- 1960.03.17
  86. "Felix and the Beanstalk" -- 1960.03.18
  87. "The Milky Way" -- 1960.03.21
  88. "The Super Rocket Formula" -- 1960.03.22
  89. "The Weather Maker" -- 1960.03.23
  90. "The Giant Magnet" -- 1960.03.24
  91. "The Instant Truck Melter" -- 1960.03.25
  92. "The Pep Pill" -- 1960.03.28
  93. "Leprechaun Gold from Rainbows" -- 1960.03.29
  94. "The Magnetic Ray" -- 1960.03.30
  95. "The Instant Grower" -- 1960.03.31
  96. "The Professor's Ancestor? The Wizard" -- 1960.04.01
  97. "Luring the Magic Bag of Tricks" -- 1960.04.04
  98. "The Uranium Discovery" -- 1960.04.05
  99. "Chief Standing Bull" -- 1960.04.06
  100. "The Strongest Robot in the World" -- 1960.04.07
  101. "Stairway to the Stars" -- 1960.04.08
  102. "Cleaning House" -- 1960.04.11
  103. "Vavoom Learns How to Fish" -- 1960.04.12
  104. "The Golden Nugget" -- 1960.04.13
  105. "The Genie" -- 1960.04.14
  106. "Felix and Poindexter Out West" -- 1960.04.15
  107. "The Bad Genie" -- 1960.04.18
  108. "The Rajah's Zoo" -- 1960.04.19
  109. "The Loan Business" -- 1960.04.20
  110. "A Treasure Chest" -- 1960.04.21
  111. "The Essence of Money" -- 1960.04.22
  112. "Mercury's Winged Sandals" -- 1960.04.25
  113. "The $10,000 Vacation" -- 1960.04.26
  114. "Brother Pebble Bottom" -- 1960.04.27
  115. "The North Pole and a Walrus Hunt" -- 1960.04.28
  116. "Cleopatra's Beauty Secrets" -- 1960.04.29
  117. "The Trip Back from the North Pole" -- 1960.05.02
  118. "The Golden Whale Baby-Sitter" -- 1960.05.03
  119. "North Pole Jail Hole" -- 1960.05.04
  120. "Felix the Handyman" -- 1960.05.05
  121. "Public Enemies Number One and Two" -- 1960.05.06
  122. "Horse Thieves" -- 1960.05.07
  123. "Adventures of Felix" -- 1960.05.08
  124. "Felix the Cat Bottles the Genie" -- 1960
  125. "Felix the Cat Finds the Golden Bug" -- 1960
  126. "Felix the Cat Finds a Genie" -- 1960

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Jack Mercer, Provided Voice Of Popeye in Film Cartoons". The New York Times. December 9, 1984. Retrieved August 21, 2010. 
  2. ^ Cart, Michael (March 31, 1991). "The Cat With the Killer Personality". The New York Times. Retrieved August 21, 2010. 
  3. ^ Mendoza, N.F. (August 27, 1995). "For fall, a classically restyled puddy tat and Felix the Cat". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 24, 2010. 
  4. ^ Solomon 37.
  5. ^ Sanders, Rebekah (8 April 2009). "Glendale singer marks 'Felix the Cat' theme's 50th year". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 28 April 2016. 

External links[edit]