The Great Grape Ape Show
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The Great Grape Ape Show is a 30-minute Saturday morning animated series produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions and broadcast on ABC from September 6 to December 13, 1975. ABC continued to air it in reruns until 1978.
|The Great Grape Ape Show|
|Directed by||Charles A. Nichols|
|Voices of||Bob Holt|
|Theme music composer||Hoyt Curtin|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||16|
|Executive producer(s)||William Hanna|
|Running time||30 minutes (10 minutes per segment)|
|Production company(s)||Hanna-Barbera Productions|
|Distributor||Warner Bros. Television Distribution|
|Original release||September 6 –|
December 13, 1975
The title character is a 40-foot purple gorilla (voiced by Bob Holt) with the mind of a child. His catch phrase is saying his name twice ("Grape Ape, Grape Ape") after anything anyone says, usually as a form of agreement or acknowledgement of what was said. He travels the countryside with his canine pal Beegle Beagle (voiced by Marty Ingels), whom he calls "Beegly Beagly".
Grape Ape's immense size tends to initially shock and frighten those unfamiliar with him, and his presence alone has often terrified people and animals, causing them to run off screaming invariably: "YEOW! A gorill-ill-ill-ill-la!". The only exception to this was the character Rosie O'Lady (voiced by Janet Waldo), who appeared in Episode 11, "The Indian Grape Call". When asked by Beagle why she did not yell in fear like everyone else did upon seeing Grape Ape, she simply said, "You've see one 40-foot purple ape, you've seen them all". In "Ali Beagle and the Forty Grapes", a wooden city limits sign reacted to Grape Ape's presence (after "overhearing" that no one else had) by progressively displaying the "YEOW!" phrase, with Beegle reading aloud as the sign changed, unfolding additional segments for the several "ill[a]" syllables (after which it folded itself up and hopped away in fear).
Grape Ape and his friend Beegle Beagle usually move in a small yellow van driven by Beegle Beagle with Grape Ape sitting on the roof which can somehow support his weight. A recurring bit of business would be for him to 'rev up' the tiny vehicle like a child with a friction toy, then hop aboard as the van would start on its way. Also, Grape Ape's steps would often bounce Beegle into the air, where his legs would keep walking without breaking stride.
Given his size, Grape Ape's sneezes were equivalent to a hurricane; and when he cried, which was sometimes when he was homesick for his family, his tears could cause flooding in areas. When he does wrong, he also famously says, "I'm sorry!", which is done so often Beegle Beagle knows when it is coming and sometimes says it along with him, though often in a playful way.
The Great Grape Ape Show was broadcast in these following formats on ABC:
- Tom and Jerry/Grape Ape Show (September 6, 1975 – September 4, 1976, ABC Saturday 8:30-9:30 AM)
- Tom and Jerry/Grape Ape/Mumbly Show (September 11, 1976 – November 27, 1976, ABC Saturday 8:00-9:00 AM) (rerun of Tom and Jerry and Grape Ape)
- The Great Grape Ape Show (September 11, 1977 – September 3, 1978, ABC Sunday 11:00-11:30 AM) (rerun)
The show was originally broadcast as a segment of Tom and Jerry/Grape Ape Show during the 1975–76 season; for the 1976–77 season, the show became Tom and Jerry/Grape Ape/Mumbly Show, and in 1977–78, The Great Grape Ape Show became its own half-hour show on Sunday mornings. Thirty-two 10-minute installments of Grape Ape were made; two were aired per 30-minute episode.
Grape Ape also appeared as a member of "The Yogi Yahooeys" team on Scooby's All-Star Laff-A-Lympics / Scooby's All-Stars from 1977 to 1979 and would often team up with Yakky Doodle in sporting competitions. In Britain, the BBC ran The Great Grape Ape with the cartoon series Bailey's Comets during 1977–78. The Tom & Jerry Show also appeared elsewhere in the BBC schedules, whereas the other part of the U.S. Saturday fare, Mumbly was shown by ITV.
In the 1980s, repeats of The Great Grape Ape Show were shown on USA Cartoon Express; they were later restored and run on Cartoon Network and can also be seen on Boomerang, often as part of the Boomerang Zoo package. The full half-hour version was not shown on Boomerang until November 22, 2012.
Like many animated series created by Hanna-Barbera in the 1970s, the show contained an inferior laugh track created by the studio.
|Nº||Cartoons||Original air date||PC|
|1||"That Was No Idol, That Was My Ape / The All-American Ape"||September 6, 1975||79-2
|2||"Movie Madness / Trouble at Bad Rock"||September 13, 1975||79-3
|3||"Flying Saucery / There's No Feud Like an Old Feud"||September 20, 1975||79-5
|4||"The Grape Race / The Big Parade"||September 1975||79-7
|5||"A Knight to Remember / S.P.L.A.T."||October 4, 1975||79-9
|6||"G.I. Ape / The Purple Avenger"||October 11, 1975||79-11
|7||"Grapefinger / Return to Balaboomba"||October 18, 1975||79-13
|8||"Amazon Ape / Grape Marks the Spot"||October 1975||79-15
|9||"The Invisible Ape / Public Grape No. 1"||November 1, 1975||79-18
|10||"The Incredible Shrinking Grape / What's a Nice Prince Like You Doing in a Duck Like That?"||November 8, 1975||79-17
|11||"Who's New at the Zoo / The Indian Grape Call"||November 15, 1975||79-14
|12||"A Grape Is Born / The First Grape in Space"||November 22, 1975||79-23
|13||"S.P.L.A.T.'s Back: Part 1 / S.P.L.A.T.'s Back: Part 2"||November 27, 1975*||79-20
Part 1. The Chicken has been training birds to steal goods. Grape Ape and Beegle Beagle are assigned to the case. They trace the villain to a bird sanctuary, but only meet a human birdkeeper. After the Chicken kidnaps the Chief, Beegle and Grape Ape disguise themselves as a bird and tree, respectively. The Chicken orders his newest "recruit" to chop down the tree and take care of the Chief.
Part 2. Beegle, disguised as Big Bad Bird, pretends to follow the Chicken's orders. The Chicken heads out to sea, along with his birds, while Grape Ape secretly follows them underwater. Eventually, Beegle reveals that the birds were merely controlled by a whistle. As for the Chicken, he turns out to be the birdkeeper in disguise.
|14||"To Sleep or Not to Sleep / Olympic Grape"||November 29, 1975||79-27
|15||"Ali Beagle and the 40 Grapes / Grape Five-O"||December 6, 1975||79-29
|16||"The Purple Avenger Strikes Again / The Grape Connection"||December 13, 1975||79-30
* Telecast at Noon (EST), Thursday afternoon, November 27, 1975, as part of ABC's Thanksgiving Funshine Festival.
Home media releasesEdit
The episodes "That Was No Idol, That Was My Ape" and "The All-American Ape" are available on the DVD Saturday Morning Cartoons 1970's Vol. 2.
Norbert Fersen adapted the TV show into a comic strip in the 1970s, under its French translated name Momo et Ursul.
- Grape Ape had his own short-lived comic book series called The Great Grape Ape that ran 2 issues in September and November 1976 published by Charlton Comics. He also appeared in Laff-A-Lympics #1 to #11 and #13 as well as TV Stars #1. Both titles were published by Marvel Comics in 1978–79. He also appeared in Hanna-Barbera Presents #6 published by Archie Comics in 1996. Outside of these American comics, Grape Ape was featured in three annual comics published in England from 1978 through 1980.
- Grape Ape appeared in the "Laff-A-Lympics" segment as part of "The Yogi Yahooeys" team on Scooby's All-Star Laff-A-Lympics / Scooby's All-Stars (1977–79). His size varies on the show, sometimes being his normal 40 feet and other times about 6–10 feet.
- Grape Ape made a cameo appearance in the episode "Nebuloc–The Prehistoric Planet" on Yogi's Space Race (1978).
- In the Dexter's Laboratory episode "Chubby Cheese", Grape Ape (voiced by Jeff Bennett) was among the animatronic Hanna-Barbera characters in the animatronic show as he closes out Chubby's song.
- Grape Ape also made a cameo in an episode of The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy called "Giant Billy and Mandy All Out Attack".
- Grape Ape was featured in the episode "Grape Juiced" of Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law with Grape Ape voiced by John Michael Higgins and Beegle Beagle voiced by Doug Preis.
- In Episode 539 of Saturday Night Live that was hosted by Queen Latifah, the TV Funhouse segment The X-Presidents featured Grape Ape. In a Pro-War propaganda cartoon that Ronald Reagan shows to Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, and George H.W. Bush, Grape Ape was shown taking part in the Invasion of Grenada where he scares the big-toothed Grenada soldier into hiding in a log as a skunk (which was previously seen in a Bugs Bunny cartoon about the Korean War) says "P.U." When Gerald Ford asks "Who's Grape Ape," Ronald Reagan quotes "He had a show. We were saving The Smurfs for Nicaragua."
- In the Robot Chicken episode "I'm Trapped", Grape Ape is seen dead and a crowd of policemen are around his body and realize that they did not hear the G in his name, which would explain why they shot him.
- Grape Ape and Beegle Beagle make a cameo in a 2012 MetLife commercial entitled "Everyone".
- Grape Ape was mentioned on the October 1, 2014 episode of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, during his "Audience Suggestion Box" segment. Bystanders were asked in Times Square to name as many animals as possible in a few seconds, and one mustachioed man answered "grape." When asked why, he stated "I was thinking about Grape Ape."
- Grape Ape appeared in Brak Presents the Brak Show Starring Brak voiced by Dave Willis.
- Grape Ape had a cameo on Cartoon Planet episode 10 " Tom Foolery".