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Prod. and Airdates:

 

September 1969 - January 1971, CBS

Hanna-Barbera Productions

Theme Song: The Perils of Penelope Pitstop

 
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enelope Pitstop must have, at some point, wondered why a masked villain calling himself the Hooded Claw persistently kidnapped and attempted to do away with her. It turns out Penelope was heiress to a vast fortune and the only way her "trusted and devoted" guardian, Sylvester Sneekly, could gain the inheritance for himself was if Penelope were not around. So Mr. Sneekly disguised himself in a hat, green cape and mask and adopted the sinister alias Hooded Claw to do just that - eliminate the person standing between himself and the easy life.

 

The Hooded Claw hatched schemes that would do a Bond villain proud - instead of just doing away with Penelope, he'd capture her then attempt to carry out some cleverly convoluted plan that afforded her plenty of time to escape. Assisting him were two henchmen called the Bully Brothers, who looked, dressed and spoke exactly alike.

 

 

Penelope had the bearing of a southern belle, very ladylike and proper, which was apparent by the way she formed phrases and by her southern accent, such as yelling "hay-ulp" (help) when in danger. Time and again she fell easily into the Hooded Claw's clutches, then proved incredibly resourceful when it came to escaping. Looking out for Penelope's welfare were a group of pint-sized gangster types called the Ant Hill Mob. Whenever Penelope was in danger (which was all the time) they'd race to her rescue in their vehicle Chug-a-Boom, a self-aware car that could respond to directions. At times the Ant Hill Mob were successful, but a good deal of the time their efforts resulted in their own need of rescue, and Penelope would end up having to save not only herself, but her would-be saviors as well.

 

Clyde was leader of the Ant Hill Mob and gave the orders. A good many of the Ant Hill Mob's failures were in consequence to Clyde telling Dum Dum to do something, then Dum Dum carrying out the order in the worst possible way. There is no mystery how Dum Dum got his name. Another member of the mob was Softy, a sensitive soul who cried constantly, in good or bad situations. Softy's polar opposite was Yak Yak, who thought everything was funny and never stopped laughing. Snoozy had trouble staying awake and shared driving responsibilities with Dum Dum. If an item was needed, such as a bridge or a trampoline, Pockets could pull the item out of his coat pocket, ready for use. Lastly, Zippy was a speedster who could move with incredible quickness.

 

During the show a narrator (voice of Gary Owens), gave a running dialogue of the action as it unfolded, instilling a tongue-in-cheek sense of drama to developments, while at the same time serving the audience a healthy helping of alliteration; for instance, "Poor Penelope, is there no way that this terrible torpedo trap can be tripped up?" Occasionally the Hooded Claw or Penelope responded to the narrator or made a comment directly to the viewing audience - the Hooded Claw gloating upon his foreseeable success or upset that his plans were being openly broadcast, or Penelope calmly expressing her concern when her life was in mortal danger.

 

The Perils of Penelope Pitstop was not the first show that Penelope and the Ant Hill Mob were a part of. They were members of the cast of Wacky Races which aired the previous television season in 1968. Wacky Races had a large cast of characters who participated in races all over the globe in far-out vehicles. Penelope's mode of dress (helmet and racing goggles) was a carry over from her look in the Wacky Races series. The Ant Hill Mob were also part of that series, but their names were different. In Wacky Races their car was called the Bullet Proof Bomb and they were named Clyde, Danny, Kurby, Mac, Ring-a-Ding, Rug Bug Benny, and Willy.

 
   

 

Cast

Penelope Pitstop

Janet Waldo

Sylvester Sneekly/Hooded Claw

Paul Lynde

The Bully Brothers

Mel Blanc

Yak Yak

Mel Blanc

Chug-a-Boom

Mel Blanc

Clyde

Paul Winchell

Softy

Paul Winchell

Zippy

Don Messick

Pockets

Don Messick

Dum Dum

Don Messick

Snoozy

Don Messick

Narrator

Gary Owens

 

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The Terrible Trolley Trap

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The Treacherous Movie Lot Plot

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The Diabolical Department Store Danger

Hair Raising Harness Race

North Pole Peril

Tall Timber Treachery

Cross Country Double Cross

Big Bagdad Danger

Bad Fortune in a Chinese Fortune Cookie

Big Top Trap

Game of Peril

London Town Treachery

 

 

 

 

 

The Bully Brothers
The Hooded Claw
 

 

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