11/27/08

The Boob Tube #1: The New Zoo Revue

If you remember Romper Room and Captain Kangaroo, chances are you remember the New Zoo Revue. It generally came on in the morning for the early riser pre-school crowd. The main characters were "Freddie the Frog", "Henrietta Hippo" (whose voice was like nails on a chalkboard), and "Charlie the Owl" (a pompous ass who treated Freddie like crap).

The mastermind behind the show, Doug Momary, wrote over 600 songs for 195 episodes. What an output! And really, the music was not that bad.

Somehow, the goofy looking Doug (easily the nerdiest guy ever) ended up marrying the smoking hot Emily Peden who played "Emmy Jo" who pranced around in a micro mini-skirt and go go boots in every episode. I mean, Doug made Jamie Farr look handsome.... how did he pull this off? My guess is some sort of hypnosis was involved.


In any case, Doug and Emily are still married and run a successful business called Laguna Productions, a producer of commercials, PSAs, and industrials. Emily is the vice president of finance!

Remember the toothless idiot "Mr. Dingle"? He's in the picture above, no doubt drooling with lust in his heart over the young Emmy Jo. Mr. Dingle was played by none other than my main man, Chuck Woolery!

In the 1980's a disturbing outtake from the show surfaced. Clowning around on the set, Freddie the Frog and Charlie the Owl are filmed dropping the F bomb and displaying acts of disturbing crudity while the off screen cast and crew laugh it up. Before clicking on the YouTube clip, be forewarned that frog and owl use some pretty offensive language.
Not only are the actors in the costumes having a bit of X rated fun, but the voice actors are also involved. The sailor mouthed owl was voiced by Bob Holt who also provided the voice for Grape Ape!

I'm guessing Woolery had some hand in this business as well. I can't prove it. It's just a hunch.

Before you go, here's a clip of the intensely nerdy Doug and an annoying curmudgeon (actor Jesse White) singing about fornication to a bunch of animals. "The miracle of birth, the breath of life..." - it's actually quite good. Good job, Doug.



Related post: Ode to Emmy Jo

5 comments:

  1. I remember this show and liked it actually a lot. As a kid I preferred this show over some of the other shows at the time. I even liked Mr. Rogers and Captain Kangaroo. If you want to delve into something really obscure you can research Captain Guss, a local host in San Antonio Tx, where I grew up mostly. There was a late night horror show there too called Project Terror and it gets a nod in Robert Rodriguez's Planet Terror, as Rodgriguez, I believe, spent some time growing up in San Antonio. It is so close to Mexico that I actually sued to watch bull fights on our old b/w TV. Awesome or what?

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  2. As a Kangaroo fan you must of had the misfortune of becoming acquainted with a certain Slim Goodbody. Skin tight unitard, billowing fro, lifelike internal organs.... I've posted on him recently -the textbook definition of a childhood trauma.

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  3. Another bit of trivia you might want to include, the girl in the Henrietta Hippo costume was former contract dancer Larri Thomas (look her up). Besides being the "Cafe' Dancer" in "Curucu: Beast of the Amazon" and one of the Goldwyn Girls to promote Guys and Dolls, she was also Marilyn Monroe’s dance stand-in for "How to Marry a Millionaire," and Julie Andrews' stand in for "Sound of Music."

    Which opened the doors needed to become a Character on a beloved children's show.

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    1. Which one was played by original Mouseketeer Sharon Baird?

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    2. Ms. Thomas unfortunately died in 2013 from a fall .

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