Sunday, May 8, 2011

Saturday Morning's Forgotten Heroes: Inch High, Private Eye (1973)

Inch High, Private Eye was one of two freshman series Hanna-Barbera sold to NBC in 1973 (Butch Cassidy was the other), part of a revamped lineup built around the animated revival of Star Trek.

Some sources have tried to explain Inch's origin, claiming he was originally meant to be a normal sized sleuth who could shrink down to an inch tall and back to normal size, but as we would see, Inch (Len Weinrib) was permanently at Tom Thumb-size and a on-again, off-again operative for the Finkerton Detective Agency (a play on Pinkerton, of course). Aided by his normal-sized niece, Glory, chauffeur-bodyguard Gator, and faithful St. Bernard, Braveheart, Inch bumbled his way into solving case after case, but viewers tuned him out, and the series was cancelled after 1 season, although it would make its way into syndication a few years later.

Here's the intro:

Much like George Jetson a decade earlier, Inch would be fired and rehired periodically by his boss, a running gag that got old rather quickly. Would Warner Bros. revisit this concept today? Considering how many of H-B's characters of the past have been run through the wringer by the jesters of [adult swim] for no other reason than to tick off old-school fans, it'd require a knockout script, including a detailed origin, to bring Inch back. Don't hold your breath, though.

Rating: B.


magicdog said...

I can definitely see this show getting rebooted with a modern sensibility.

Perhaps make him a three way cross between his HB self and DCAU's The Atom & The Question. He'd be a crack detective who had the ability to shrink at will to help solve cases.

If an HB version of the Justice League were to come to fruition, he'd be a great reserve member!

hobbyfan said...

As I noted, that might've been the original concept.

You could explain away his being at 1" rather permanently due to a failed experiment.