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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Goofy Hawaii Cartoon

I read this morning that an actor named Arnold Stang has passed away at age 91. You may think you’ve never heard of him, but you have probably heard from him, he performed more than 100 roles between 1942 and 2002, often doing voice work. His distinctive voice held the starring role in a 1961 Hanna Barbera cartoon series, Top Cat.

HONOLULU Magazine readers may be amused to learn that the first episode of Top Cat was called “Hawaii Here We Come,” in which the scruffy band of con artist alley cats conspire to stowaway on a ship to Hawaii, pursued by their nemesis, Officer Dibble. Watch it here, in three parts on YouTube.

Interesting to think that in 1961, Hawaii was so famous and desirable on the Mainland that someone would premier a kid’s TV series around the concept of getting to the Islands no matter what it takes, knowing that the audience would get it. By 1961, tourists were flooding into Hawaii by jet planes, but the cartoon is set aboard a cruise ship. Did people still think that was the ideal way to reach Hawaii, or was it just convenient for the stowaway plot?

Most dated joke: “Most men go to Hawaii for the hula girls.”

Best line: “Cop and counterfeiter overboard!”

Eye-catching tiny detail: There’s an “M” on the ship’s smokestack of the S.S. Aloha Hooey—for Matson, I'd guess.

(Hat tip: Instapundit.)

Posted on Tuesday, December 22, 2009 in Permalink

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