The Hathaways is a 26-episode situation comedy, which aired on ABC from October 6, 1961, to March 30, 1962, starring Peggy Cass and Jack Weston as suburban Los Angeles "parents" to a trio of performing chimpanzees. Weston portrayed Walter Hathaway, a flabby real estate agent. Cass is his zany bride Elinore, "mother" and booking agent to the Marquis Chimps, named Candy, Charlie, and Enoch. The chimps had earlier appeared on CBS's The Ed Sullivan Show, a Jack Benny special in 1959 and several commercials in 1960.
From left, Charlie, Enoch, Peggy Cass as Elinore Hathaway, and Candy, 1962
Mary Grace Canfield
|Theme music composer||Herbert W. Spencer|
|Composer(s)||Herbert W. Spencer|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||26|
|Executive producer(s)||Robert Sparks|
|Running time||30 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Screen Gems, in association with Gloucester Productions, Inc.|
|Distributor||Sony Pictures Television|
|Original release||October 6, 1961 – March 30, 1962|
Supporting roles were filled by character actress Mary Grace Canfield as Mrs. Amanda Allison, a housekeeper; Barbara Perry as Elinore's friend and neighbor, Thelma Brockwood, and Harvey Lembeck as Jerry Roper, the theatrical agent of the chimps, Another neighbor, Mrs. Harrison was played by Belle Montrose, the mother of comedian Steve Allen.
The premiere episode is entitled "Love Thy Neighbor": the Brockwoods decide to purchase the house next door despite reservations about the chimps being their neighbors too. Joe Flynn, guest-starred as Freddie Winkler in the third episode "Walter Takes a Partner", which aired on October 20. Vaughn Taylor played a veterinarian Dr. Dorsey in "Candy's Tonsils" (November 10). Robert Q. Lewis portrayed Barney Holt in "TV or Not TV" on (November 24). Other episodes were entitled "The Hathaways Sleep Out", "Grandma's Lamp", "TV or Not TV", "The Practical Joker", "Help Wanted", "The Shrewd Trader", "A Man for Amanda", and the series finale, "Elinore's Best Friend".
Ratings for the Screen Gems series were so low that ABC had largely to self-sponsor the program (although the series was sponsored on alternate weeks, throughout most of the season, by Ralston-Purina). The writers included Tom Adair and James B. Allardice; story consultants were Hugh Wedlock and Howard Snyder, who co-wrote the premiere episode with Dick Wesson. Some of the directing was handled by Richard Kinon. The series followed another short-lived ABC series, Straightaway starring John Ashley and Brian Kelly as race-car enthusiasts. It preceded the popular cartoon series The Flintstones. Its principal competition was the Clint Eastwood western series Rawhide on CBS.
Despite the lack of television success, The Hathaways produced a comic book of the chimpanzees in 1962.
|Episode #||Episode title||Original airdate||Episode Summary|
|1-1||"Love Thy Neighbor" (pilot)||October 6, 1961||Walter sells the house next door to a client who can't stand pets.|
|1-2||"Elinore Buys A Hat"||October 13, 1961||Elinor buys a hat and ends up in jail when Charlie pockets her parking ticket.|
|1-3||"Walter Takes A Partner"||October 20, 1961||Walter and Freddie start a synthetic soda pop business.|
|1-4||"Elinore's Guilt"||October 27, 1961||Elinor is stricken with remorse for having left the chimps home with a sitter while she and Walter sojourn at Palm Springs.|
|1-5||"Income Tax Rebate"||November 3, 1961||Walter is requested at the local office of the Internal Revenue Service to discuss deductions claimed on his "dependents".|
|1-6||"Candy's Tonsils"||November 10, 1961||Candy, the baby chimp, faces surgery unless she can be coaxed into taking her medicine.|
|1-7||"Trash Day"||November 17, 1961||Ex-newspaper thief Charlie becomes much too neighborly to Brockwoods, whose papers he's been stealing.|
|1-8||"TV Or Not TV"||November 24, 1961||Elinor and the chimps pinch-hit on Walter's television commercial when he becomes desert-bound.|
|1-9||"The Kids Go To School"||December 1, 1961||The chimp classmates prove popular with everyone at the day nursery—with the exception of one shocked mother.|
|1-10||"The Practical Joker"||December 8, 1961||Charlie borrows Elinor's purse, containing club funds, as bait in a sidewalk prank.|
|1-11||"Double Birthday Party"||December 15, 1961||Walter sees himself as a forgotten man on his birthday and sulks.|
|1-12||"The Hathaways Sleep Out"||December 22, 1961||Walter thinks Elinor has run away when she moves the paint-allergic chimps to a motel.|
|1-13||"The Jingle Contest"||December 29, 1961||Walter and Bert base their entry in a jungle contest on a tune that Charlie plays on the piano.|
|1-14||"Waltzing With Walter"||January 5, 1962||Elinor wins dancing lessons for two.|
|1-15||"Foxy Chimp"||January 12, 1962||Elinor takes an ailing chimp from the zoo to recuperate at her house.|
|1-16||"It's In the Cards"||January 19, 1962||A neighbor sees something in Charlie's cards and steers Elinor into a visit to Walter's office.|
|1-17||"The Headliners"||January 26, 1962||Walter is supposed to stay home for a business conference while Elinor and the Chimps board a Honolulu-bound plane for a nightclub engagement.|
|1-18||"The Paint Job"||February 2, 1962||Elinor campaigns for a new color job on the family "bus".|
|1-19||"Grandma's Lamp"||February 9, 1962||Walter plots to get rid of Elinor's antique horror, a gift from her family.|
|1-20||"Help Wanted"||February 16, 1962||Elinor secretly works as a cigarette girl to buy Walter a special surprise.|
|1-21||"Swami Chimp"||February 23, 1962||The Hathaways' chimp act is threatened by a mind-reading rival chimp.|
|1-22||"A Man For Amanda"||March 2, 1962||About to lose their lovelorn housekeeper Amanda, Walter and Elinor round up some eligible mates.|
|1-23||"Pop Goes the Budget"||March 9, 1962||Walter encounters family opposition when he tries to enforce an economy wave.|
|1-24||"Charlie Goes To the Races"||March 16, 1962||Beanstalk, a race horse, takes a shine to Charlie, and mopes for him on race day|
|1-25||"The Shrewd Trader"||March 23, 1962||The chimps pick up Elinor's knack of swapping and practice it until perfect.|
|1-26||"Elinore's Best Friend"||March 30, 1962||Elinor is elated when a college chum, now a wealthy world traveler, comes to visit.|
Latter-day television critics Castleman and Podrazik (1982) have called The Hathaways "possibly the worst series ever to air on network TV", criticizing the production, scripts, acting, the "utterly degrading" premise, and the overall "total worthlessness" of the program.
- TVparty, The Hathaways: http://www.tvparty.com/fall61.html
- Geocities, The Hathaways:https://web.archive.org/web/20080318164613/http://www.geocities.com/TelevisionCity/Stage/2950/US/Comedy/Hathaways.htm
- Castleman, Harry; Walter J. Podrazik (1982). Watching TV: Four Decades of American Television. New York: McGraw-Hill. pp. 147–153. ISBN 0-07-010269-4.