Friday, March 24, 2017

1970-Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp

Occasionally you come across a series that defies categorization. A Saturday morning action-adventure live-action comedy starring animals with dubbed-over voices and a laugh track? Okay.
With plots that make the skits of The Monkees look like high art (see what I did there?) the series featured Lancelot Link and his female colleague, "Mata Hairi," working for A.P.E., the Agency to Prevent Evil. They fought against C.H.U.M.P., the Criminal Headquarters for the Underworld's Master Plan. If this sounds really similar to Get Smart!, you're right. Two of the creator/producers, Stan Burns and Mike Marmer, were both former writers of Get Smart!
Actors Dayton Allen, Bernie Kopell and Joan Gerber provided almost all of the voiceover work, much of it done ad-lib to match the mouths and actions of the already filmed animals.
The series ran from Jan-April 1970 on Saturday mornings at 8am central and was the first show on the ABC network feed for the day. There were 17 episodes total. The somewhat politically incorrect opening theme can be seen here.
A DVD of this series is actually available.

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