It Is Puppet Time (in black and white)!
(remember - click picture to enlarge)
Remember the HOWDY DOODY SHOW with Buffalo Bob Smith and that cut little female Indian puppet, Mr. Whatz-hiz-name with the fuzzy gray sideburns, the Indian Chief, and Clarabelle the Clown with his seltzer squirt bottle and his horn? Wait, I forgot the main character, Howdy Doody – he was there too. He was the one that high stepped out or clomped out in front of the Peanut Gallery to lead the kids in a cheer or tried to sell them something.
And you would think Clarabelle would be woman, with a woman’s name, but no Clarabelle was a man, with no explanation why he had a woman’s name. It was none of our business.
Of course the HOWDY DOODY SHOW was televised nationally. Locally, on WSB-TV, was the WOODY WILLOW CLUB, that was a high stepping puppet marionette just like Howdy Doody. Woody’s girlfriend was Teresa Termite… which you would think she being a termite and Woody being wood would be mortal enemies… but they were the best of friends.
They had a an audience of kids too…. and they also had a man come in everyday and read the comic strips from the Atlanta Journal on the air and show the illustration as he read them. Cox Broadcasting owned both WSB and The Atlanta Journal, so I guess they were just plugging themselves.
Officer Don was the M.C. and he had the natural talent of knowing when a kid was about to say something obscene and head it off or steer the kid’s mind away from what he was about to blurt out, that his brother coached him to say… just ask Larry B’s younger brother. \
THE WOODY WILLOW SHOW set.
After WOODY WILLOW ran his course Officer Don next took was over the POPEYE SHOW. Which was just about the same format – birthdays and cartoon reading, but instead of high stepping puppets you had old black and white Popeye cartoons.
Which, I would like to say, the old B&W POPEYE cartoons where they mumbled and cursed to themselves was the best brand of cartoons of the day…yep.
I think Don’s last name is Elliot. He was a owner of a TV station not long ago, I suppose he still is, if he is still living.
The reason I am thinking of these puppets is that in Wal-mart in the $1 DVD section are some old re-runs, sitcoms, and the like…. And they have one called THE HOWDY DOODY SHOW. I have been tempted to buy it, but why? It would be embarrassing to buy for myself… I would have to say I was getting it for some one… and one lie will lead to another lie – I would just like to look at it to see if would generate some old memories… it is something like 94 minutes long…. Not hardly a dollar’s worth.
The first time I saw them on display they had about 20. The next time I checked they had about 16, then 9, and the latest, last week they had 6 left. What should I do?
Below are a few pages of MAD comic book’s lampoon of the HOWDY DOODY SHOW: