The Hillbilly Bears
|The Hillbilly Bears|
|Directed by||William Hanna
|Voices of||Henry Corden
Jean Vander Pyl
|Theme music composer||Hoyt Curtin|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||26|
|Running time||6 minutes (per short)|
|Production company(s)||Hanna-Barbera Productions|
Warner Bros. Television Distribution (current)
|Original release||October 2, 1965– September 7, 1967|
|Related shows||The Atom Ant/Secret Squirrel Show|
The Hillbilly Bears played on a social stereotype of the "hillbilly", with a gun toting, mumbling father Paw Rugg (voiced by Henry Corden) who was always "feudin" ("feudin" was usually a lethargic operation, in which the protagonists fired the same bullet back and forth from the comfort of their rocking chairs) with the neighbors the Hoppers.
Paw Rugg's voice was a mumble, splattered with a few understandable words. Particularly in the first episodes, Paw Rugg's voice was incomprehensible; his speech improved with the later episodes. His wife Maw (voiced by Jean Vander Pyl) was a homemaker who appeared as the more level-headed parent; their daughter Floral (voiced by Jean Vander Pyl) had lemon-colored fur (as opposed to the darker-colored fur of Maw, Paw and Shag); she was the southern belle and most sophisticated member of the family while Shag (the youngest and smallest of the family, voiced by Don Messick) was a troublemaker who looks up to his father. The voices and personas of Floral and Shag were nearly identical to Elroy and Judy Jetson from The Jetsons.
Season 1 (1965-1966)
|1||Detour For Sure||Oct-02-1965||A construction crew is attempting to evict Maw and Paw Rugg out of their house so they can put in a new highway; however, the Ruggs are content to stay where they are.|
|2||Woodpecked||Oct-09-1965||A woodpecker is disturbing Maw's beauty rest; Paw and Shag try to get rid of it, but it outwits them at every turn.|
|3||Anglers Aweigh||Oct-16-1965||Maw sends Paw to catch a catfish for their dinner and gets more than he bargains for when he runs into Ol' Whiskers.|
|4||Stranger Than Friction||Oct-23-1965||Disgusted with Paw's shooting strangers, Maw makes him swear to invite the next one to dinner: along comes an escaped chimpanzee.|
|5||Goldilocks and the Four Bears||Oct-30-1965||A movie star named Goldy Looks gets a flat tire and finds the Bears' house while looking for help; she ends up eating their food and sleeping in their beds and she runs off when the Bears get home with an idea for a movie.|
|6||Going, Going Gone Gopher||Nov-06-1965||Paw is put in charge of guarding the garden when Maw goes to town, but he winds up having to defend it from a very hungry gopher.|
|7||Courtin' Disaster||Nov-13-1965||A truce is called between the Ruggs and the Hoppers so that Floral and Claude can begin dating.|
|8||Picnic Panicked||Nov-20-1965||At the annual Hog Woller picnic, Claude Hopper chases Floral, hoping to share her picnic basket, while Paw chases Claude.|
|9||Judo Kudos||Nov-27-1965||Sumo the Japanese fighting bear is on his way to the circus when he falls out of the truck when it hits a bump; Sumo helps Paw learn karate so he can use it on his rival, Claude Hopper.|
|10||Just Plane Around||Dec-04-1965||Experimental plane X-Ray-X lands near the Rugg house and Paw goes for an unexpected ride with agent 00700 and his pal who are trying to steal the plane.|
|11||War Games||Dec-11-1965||The Pentagon decides to conduct war games in the Ruggs' backyard.|
|12||Bricker Brats||Dec-18-1965||Shag and the Hopper boy keep getting in fights over who has the toughest dad threatening to start the feud back up.|
|13||Slap Happy Grandpappy||Dec-25-1965||Grandpa Rugg comes for a visit much to the excitement of Shag and Floral; Grandpa wants to shoot some Hoppers not knowing that Paw has just ended the feud with them.|
|14||Pooped Pops||Jan-01-1966||It's July and time for Paw's yearly bath; when he's finished, Maw makes Paw play a Robin Hood game with Shag even though he is very tired.|
|15||Leaky Creek||Jan-08-1966||Maw sends Paw down to the creek to take a bath even though he just took one last year and doesn't think he needs another one; When he gets to the creek he finds it has gone dry due to a pesky beaver that has built a dam.|
|16||My Fair Hillbilly||Jan-15-1966||Maw is tired of Paw being such a slob so she sends him to the J.P. Snobbs School of Charm and they try to turn Paw into a gentleman.|
|17||Rickety-Rockety-Raccoon||Jan-22-1966||Paw battles with Rickety Raccoon after he steals eggs from the hen house.|
|18||Modern Inconvenience||Jan-29-1966||Maw and Paw are selected as the Hillbilly family of the month by Good Hillbillying Magazine and are given every modern convenience for one month.|
|19||Rabbit Rumble||Feb-05-1966||Maw sends Paw and Shag to hunt for a rabbit for dinner.|
|20||Speckled Heckler||Feb-12-1966||Professor Beetlebottom arrives at the Rugg house looking for a rare butterfly, the Speckled Fleeby Doo, and offers a $1,000 reward if they capture one.|
Season 2 (1966)
|21||Whirly Bear||Sep-10-1966||Paw goes on an unexpected ride while trying to fix the windmill.|
|22||Saucy Saucers||Sep-17-1966||Paw is captured by aliens who take him back to their planet for observation.|
|23||Chipper Chirper||Sep-24-1966||Paw's out hunting a meal for dinner when Maw's pet bird gets out of its cage and runs away.|
|24||Gettin' Paws Goat||Oct-01-1966||Paw battles with the neighbor's goat that is eating everything in his garden.|
|25||Buzzin' Cuzzins||Oct-08-1966||Gorzo the Wild Man escapes from a truck delivering him to the circus and is mistaken for Paw's cousin Fud when he shows up at the cabin.|
|26||Do the Bear||Oct-15-1966||Maw tries to wake up Paw from his between-naps rest period so he can go to the store for her; music producers offer Paw a lifetime music contract after hearing him play the guitar in the store.|
- Henry Corden - Paw Rugg
- Paul Frees - Claude Hopper
- Don Messick - Shag Rugg
- Jean Vander Pyl - Maw Rugg, Floral Rugg
The episode "Woodpecked" is available on the DVD Saturday Morning Cartoons 1960's vol. 1. The episode "Picnic Panicked" is available on the DVD Saturday Morning Cartoons 1960's Vol. 2.
Paw and Maw Rugg appeared in Yogi's Treasure Hunt.
The Hillbilly Bears appeared in a Cartoon Network Shortie, "Miss Understanding," where Maw takes them on a Jerry Springer-like show due to the fact she can't understand Paw, although the audience assumes that she means she doesn't "understand" him in the sense that she doesn't know who he is anymore. This results in Paw shooting on the wall "I luv you Maw".
On the Dexter's Laboratory episode, "Chubby Cheese" an animatronic Paw Rugg is seen playing the xylophone during Chubby's song.
The Hillbilly Bears appear in the Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law episode "Guitar Control" defending their home from the SWAT team and Bear. Paw Rugg's name can also be seen in Harvey's black book in "BabySitter" and Paw can be seen using a crowbar to tear off the logo for Sebben and Sebben in "The Death of Harvey."