Thursday, September 29, 2011

Saturday Morning's Forgotten Heroes: The Inspector (1965)

Loosely based on Peter Sellers' legendary Inspector Clouseau in the "Pink Panther" movies, The Inspector starred in his own series of DePatie-Freleng theatrical shorts, beginning in 1965. 4 years later, the series was used as the backup feature when Pink Panther debuted on NBC.

Comic Pat Harrington (later of One Day at a Time) voices both the Inspector and his aide, Sgt. Deux-Deux. In addition, taking his cue from Dragnet's Jack Webb, the Inspector narrates his own adventures.

"Le Quiet Squad", produced in 1967, uses an old plot that was used in other shorts years earlier. In this case, the Inspector must ensure that his boss gets some much needed peace & quiet. When this aired on NBC, the intro music used for the Panther's shorts was also used here.

Interestingly, when DFE produced new bumpers for The Pink Panther Show, Harrington was not brought back, as the shorts had come to an end. Instead, actor Marvin Miller, who was the 3rd man to essay the voice of the Commissioner, a role more commonly associated with Paul Frees in the minds of most fans, took over as the Inspector, in pursuit of the Panther, in a way tying this to the movie series.

Rating: B.


magicdog said...

This show was amusing, plus it wasn't until I started taking French in 7th grade before I realized the double joke (or perhaps triple joke?) in Deux-Deux's name!!

hobbyfan said...

Oh, I think there's at least a double-meaning there. If you say it fast enough, Deux-Deux may be misinterpreted as Doo-Doo, as in animal poop.

magicdog said...

Not to mention that "deux" in French means "2" as in "number two"!!

Amazing how they got the "doo-doo" pronunciation past the censors!

hobbyfan said...

They did it by having the Inspector pronounce it as "Ju-Ju". That's how I thought it was spelled for the longest time.