Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Family Toons: Dinky Dog (1978)

If there was a deterrent to Hanna-Barbera's All-New Popeye Hour during its 4 year run on CBS (before the series was shrunk to a half-hour and reformatted), it was the studio's seeming insistence on an original feature added to the show that had zero connection to Popeye himself.

Dinky Dog is about an adorable puppy that grows to mammoth proportions, much to the dismay of its owners, Sandy (Jackie Joseph, ex-Josie & the Pussycats, making her return to H-B) and Monica (Julie Bennett), and their uncle, Dudley (Frank Nelson, ex-Oddball Couple). The theme song, sung by the two actresses, is derivative of the classic theme to The Brady Bunch, while Dinky himself (Frank Welker) may have been loosely derived from Brad Anderson's comic strip, Marmaduke (which would transition to TV 3 years later), even though the breed is different. Dinky, though, could also be construed as the forerunner to the "Beethoven" movie series, and, yep, Beethoven would also transition to cartoons in due course.

The Wikipedia entry on Dinky Dog claimed it was the first H-B series created & produced in Australia, but that is incorrect. That distinction belongs to Funky Phantom, which aired 7 years earlier on ABC. Oh, Dinky might have gotten Down Under in a series of episodes where he, Dudley, Sandy, & Monica were on a world tour, but he was developed in the good ol' USA.

BeAStarEnt uploaded the theme to YouTube. I'm sure you'll get the Brady Bunch connection by listening to the lyrics.

Rating: B-.


joe said...

Back in the day there weren't many HB cartoons I didn't watch.

magicdog said...

It reminded me too much of the "Clifford, The Bog Red Dog" books I used to read as a child. At least Clifford got his own series which was a lot better than this toon despite the talented folks behind it.

hobbyfan said...

Dinky predated Clifford by at least 20 years, and the concept for Clifford was much different, too.