Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Hunter

Lately I've been taking a look at the old Total TeleVision cartoons from the 1960s. They produced shows such as Tennessee Tuxedo and Underdog, with many more segments inbetween. They are often confused with Jay Ward because the animation was farmed out to Gamma Productions in Mexico, which Ward has also used.

Despite having the same animators, the producers are different. Jay Ward was based in Hollywood and utilized west-coast voice actors such as June Foray, Paul Frees, and Daws Butler. Total TeleVision, on the other hand, was an east-coast operation based in New York, with actors such as Allen Swift, Bradley Bolke, and Jackson Beck.

While TTV's outputs aren't as witty as Ward's, they still did good work. One of them is The Hunter.

The Hunter was in production 1960-64 for 65 segments, each running no more than five minutes. The first 39 was made as part of King Leonardo and His Short Subjects, which aired on NBC from 1960 to '63. Additional 26 was made for the first season of Tennessee Tuxedo and His Tales.

The Hunter featured a bumbling dog detective who went after The Fox, who has stolen everything from the Lincoln Tunnel to Brooklyn Bridge to every single spoon in the world. Despite his bumbling behavior, he always catches the Fox in the end.

I wonder how many kids thought of Foghorn Leghorn when hearing his voice. Some may be surprised to learn that the Hunter's voice is actually the original. Kenny Delmar was a radio star who portrayed a character named Senator Claghorn. Mel Blanc used that as a basis for his voice on Foghorn.

Oddly enough, when King Leonardo was starting up, they were planning on using an impersonator for the Hunter as well. But producer Treadwell Covington suggested getting Delmar himself. As it turned out he was gracious for the job. According to co-producer Buck Biggers, Delmar was sick of hearing his voice being impersonated in Foghorn Leghorn and was gracious that they were willing to use the real deal. Delmar ended up voicing on other TTV series, including Commander McBragg.

No comments: