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Snagglepuss is a Hanna-Barbera cartoon character created in 1959,[2] a pink anthropomorphic mountain lion sporting an upturned collar, shirt cuffs and a string tie with a great desire to be a stage actor. He is voiced by Daws Butler,[1] and is best known for his catchphrase, "Heavens to Murgatroyd!",[1] along with phrases such as "Exit, stage left!" and "Heavens to Betsy!".[3]

Snagglepuss
The Yogi Bear Show character
Snagglepuss.png
First appearance The Quick Draw McGraw Show (1959)
Last appearance Yo Yogi! (1991)
Created by William Hanna
Joseph Barbera
Voiced by Daws Butler (1959-1988)[1]
Greg Burson (1989-1991)
Jeff Bergman (commercials, The Funtastic Four)
Stephen Stanton (MetLife commercial)
Victor Yerrid (Robot Chicken)
Chris Edgerly (Drawn Together)
Information
Aliases Snaggletooth
Species Mountain lion
Gender Male
Relatives Major Minor
Lila (girlfriend)

Contents

HistoryEdit

A similar-looking orange mountain lion, known as "Snaggletooth" and without collar or cuffs, first appeared in The Quick Draw McGraw Show in 1959,[4][2] before appearing as a supporting character in Augie Doggie & Doggie Daddy and Snooper & Blabber.[2] Snagglepuss appeared in his own series of shorts in 1961, becoming a regular segment on The Yogi Bear Show, featuring in a total of 32 episodes. He also appeared in other Hanna-Barbera series such as Yogi's Gang in 1973, as a co-host for Laff-A-Lympics in 1977 and 1978, Yogi's Treasure Hunt in 1985 and as a teenager on Yo Yogi! in 1991.

When the character of Snagglepuss was used for a series of Kellogg's cereal television commercials in the 1960s, Bert Lahr filed a lawsuit, claiming that the similarity of the Snagglepuss voice to his own might cause viewers to falsely conclude that Lahr was endorsing the product. As part of the settlement, the disclaimer "Snagglepuss voice by Daws Butler" was required to appear on each commercial, thus making Butler one of the few voice artists to receive a screen credit in a TV commercial.[citation needed]

Butler reused his Snagglepuss voice for two other Hanna-Barbera characters: Jonathan Wellington "Mudsy" Muddlemore from The Funky Phantom and Brutus the lion from The Roman Holidays.

In 2017, Snagglepuss appeared in a eight-page story in Suicide Squad/Banana Splits Annual #1 by Mark Russell where he is portrayed as a gay Tennessee Williams-type playwright in 1950s America.[5]

CharacterEdit

Snagglepuss lives in a cavern, which he constantly tries to make more habitable for himself. No matter what he does, however, he always winds up back where he started or worse off than he was before. In some episodes, Snagglepuss is chased by Major Minor (voiced by Don Messick), a tiny-sized hunter, whose chases seem similar to the ones which involve Elmer Fudd and Bugs Bunny (which was hardly a coincidence, since most of the scripts were created by Michael Maltese, one of Warner Bros. Cartoons' key writers in the '40s and '50s).

Butler's voice characterization is reminiscent of the more soft-spoken aspect of Bert Lahr's broad-ranging characterizations, specifically the Cowardly Lion in the 1939 MGM movie The Wizard of Oz. (Coincidentally, William Hanna and Joseph Barbera directed the Tom and Jerry cartoons for the MGM cartoon studio before opening Hanna-Barbera Productions in 1957.)[1]

Snagglepuss has three signature catchphrases. His most famous is his perpetual exclamation, "Heavens to Murgatroyd!" – a line first uttered by Bert Lahr in the film Meet the People (1944).[1] Before dashing off (whether to escape or for some other reason), he exclaims "Exit, stage left!" (or stage right, and sometimes even up or down), a phrase used in theatrical stage directions. Finally, Snagglepuss tends to add the word "even" to the end of his statements. This is done in a number of different ways:

  • After emphasizing a previous statement ("Somebody hurt! In dire pain, even!").
  • After stating a synonymous phrase ("On account of I must be a little rusty. Stale, even").
  • In a grammatically correct way, though out of order in the sentence ("I wonder if he knows my telephone number, even").
  • Simply added as an exclamation ("Heavens to Murgatroyd! A veritabububble frankenmouse monster, even!").[6]

Snagglepuss's pink color, lisping voice and theatrical manner of speaking have been interpreted as the character being gay.[7] This is explored in a 2017 comic by Mark Russell, which portrays Snagglepuss as a gay playwright in the style of Tennessee Williams, brought before the House Committee on Un-American Activities in 1950s America.[5][8]

TitlesEdit

  1. Major Operation
  2. Feud for Thought
  3. Live and Lion
  4. Fraidy Cat Lion
  5. Lions Share Sheriff
  6. Cagey Lion
  7. Royal Ruckus
  8. The Roaring Lion
  9. Paws for Applause
  10. Knight and Daze
  11. The Gangsters All Here
  12. Having a Bowl
  13. Diaper Desperado
  14. Arrow Error
  15. Twice Shy
  16. Cloak and Stagger
  17. Remember Your Lions
  18. Remember the Daze
  19. Express Trained Lion
  20. Jangled Jungle
  21. Lion Tracks
  22. Fight Fright
  23. Spring Hits a Snag
  24. Legal Eagle Lion
  25. Don't Know It Poet
  26. Tail Wag Snag
  27. Rent and Rave
  28. Footlight Fright
  29. One Two Many
  30. Royal Rodent
  31. Be My Ghost
  32. Charge That Lion

Other appearancesEdit

Hanna-BarberaEdit

Non Hanna-BarberaEdit

  • In The Simpsons episode "Lady Bouvier's Lover" (May 12, 1994), Comic Book Guy shows Bart a cel of Snagglepuss as an example of a cel that is actually worth something, as opposed to the cel of Scratchy's arm that Bart was trying to sell to him.
  • In The Simpsons episode "Sweet Seymour Skinner's Baadasssss Song" (April 28, 1994), Miss Hoover reminds Ralph Wiggum that he once reported seeing Snagglepuss outside in the schoolyard. Ralph responds, "he was going to the bathroom".
  • In the adult animated sitcom Drawn Together, Snagglepuss is featured in the episode "Gay Bash", but his face is blurred, referencing how strangers are blurred on reality programs. He is voiced by Chris Edgerly.
  • Snagglepuss made two cameos in a MetLife commercial in 2012, titled "Everyone". In a behind the scenes video, Snagglepuss (voiced by Stephen Stanton) acts and rehearses in front of the director of the ad, only for the director to tell him he does not have any speaking roles in the ad, and in response, Snagglepuss storms out of the trailer.
  • On a Season 34: Episode 8 "Weekend Update" segment on Saturday Night Live (November 15, 2008), Bobby Moynihan appears in costume as Snagglepuss to comment on California's ban on gay marriage. During the segment, Snagglepuss is outed by anchor Seth Meyers and then confesses that his domestic partner is fellow Hanna-Barbera cartoon character The Great Gazoo, who also makes a cameo.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e Martin, Gary (1996–2009). "Heavens to Murgatroyd". Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  2. ^ a b c "Cartoon Scrapbook".  Snagglepuss
  3. ^ "Excerpt". Youtube. 
  4. ^ Markstein, Donald D. "Snagglepuss". Don Markstein's Toonopedia. Archived from the original on June 12, 2017. 
  5. ^ a b "FIRST LOOK: 'Gay, Southern Gothic' Snagglepuss Comic Introduces Augie Doggie". 
  6. ^ Liberman, Mark (October 6, 2013). "Snagglepuss: early avatar of emphatic even". Language Log. 
  7. ^ Hughes, William (31 January 2017). "New comic series reimagines Snagglepuss as a gay 1950s playwright". AV Club. Retrieved 2 February 2017. 
  8. ^ "THIS: Look at those cavemen go – HiLobrow". Retrieved 8 February 2017. 

External linksEdit