Snagglepuss is an animated cartoon character created by Hanna-Barbera, the studio behind other classics like The Flintstones and Yogi Bear.
Making his debut in 1959 on “The Quick Draw McGraw Show,” Snagglepuss quickly endeared himself to viewers with his unique persona.
This pink mountain lion, known for his phrases like “Exit, stage left!” and “Heavens to Murgatroyd!”, is characterized by his flamboyant, theatrical demeanor and distinctive, cultured voice that closely resembles that of actor Bert Lahr, who played the Cowardly Lion in “The Wizard of Oz.”
Snagglepuss: Unraveling the Tale
Initially a minor character, Snagglepuss’ popularity led to his series of shorts on “The Yogi Bear Show” and, later, his own show. In these episodes, Snagglepuss usually found himself in comedic predicaments, often trying to avoid hunters, particularly the pint-sized Major Minor.
Voiced by: Daws Butler (1959–1988)
Snagglepuss: Pouncing From Page to Screen
Even if you haven’t been tickled pink by seeing a mountain lion wearing cufflinks and a collar, you’ve probably heard of Snagglepuss, Hanna-Barbera’s famously fabulous feline.
This larger-than-life character first leaped onto television screens in 1959 as a supporting act for Quick Draw McGraw. His infectious charm didn’t take long to win hearts and earn him a starring role.
Life Lessons from the Pink Puma
“Exit, stage left!” You probably heard this signature catchphrase even if you didn’t know where it came from. Snagglepuss, known for his flamboyant inflection and theatrical flourishes, was always ready with a dramatic exit or witty quip.
As viewers, we learned the importance of having a memorable exit strategy, not to mention a love for the dramatic. If life is a stage, Snagglepuss was a master of living it to the fullest.
The Power of Pink
Finally, who can forget Snagglepuss’ vibrant pink fur? While the color choice may have been purely aesthetic, it inadvertently made Snagglepuss an early pioneer in challenging gender norms. In a time when pink was primarily associated with femininity, our heroic mountain lion strutted his stuff, setting a striking example for self-expression.
Snagglepuss is not just a cartoon character but a cultural icon. His flair for drama, love for language, and distinctive pink fur continue to inspire viewers, proving that even in animation, life can be a vibrant, dramatic adventure.
Unraveling the Creative Genius: Daws Butler
From the moment Snagglepuss opened his mouth, audiences were enthralled by his voice, a unique amalgamation of the mellifluous tones of a Broadway star and the grandiloquence of a Shakespearian actor. All thanks to the genius of Daws Butler, a man often referred to as the Laurence Olivier of the cartoon world.
With each “Heavens to Murgatroyd!” Butler etched Snagglepuss into the heart of pop culture. His skillful voice acting imbued Snagglepuss with a larger-than-life persona that has since become a part of our collective cultural consciousness.
The Mark of Hanna-Barbera: Unforgettable Sidekicks
Snagglepuss wasn’t a solitary character, often sharing screen space with some of Hanna-Barbera’s most unforgettable sidekicks. Who can forget Major Minor, Snagglepuss’ nemesis, whose sole mission in life was to capture him? Or Yakky Doodle, the sweet duckling who regularly appeared in Snagglepuss’ episodes?
These characters added complexity and hilarity to the show, ensuring that each episode was a roller-coaster ride of fun and adventure. Their interactions showcased Snagglepuss’ quick wit and eloquent problem-solving skills, keeping viewers hooked week after week.
A Different Time, a Different Snagglepuss
In 2018, DC Comics reintroduced Snagglepuss in “Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles,” a series that saw our beloved character navigating the McCarthy era as a gay playwright. A brave step by DC Comics, the reinvention was a sharp departure from the original cartoon, presenting an opportunity to explore mature themes.
The nuanced handling of Snagglepuss’ character earned critical acclaim and showcased the limitless potential of cartoons in addressing profound societal issues.
The Subtle Social Commentary
Throughout the years, Snagglepuss has also served as a mirror to society, often showcasing the absurdity of our actions through his cartoon world. Whether it was Major Minor’s relentless and pointless pursuit or Snagglepuss’ own bemusement at human behavior, the show cleverly used humor to hold a mirror up to our own world.
This subtle social commentary wrapped in a layer of humor is a testament to the genius of Hanna-Barbera, proving that cartoons can be both entertaining and thought-provoking.
The Pink Cousin: The Huckleberry Hound
Although not a frequent presence, Huckleberry Hound, another famous Hanna-Barbera creation, shared a unique relationship with Snagglepuss. Huckleberry Hound’s calm demeanor served as an excellent counterbalance to Snagglepuss’ boisterous personality.
In the rare episodes where the two appeared together, viewers were treated to hilarious exchanges and unexpected camaraderie, deepening our understanding of Snagglepuss’ character. Their friendly interactions were a testament to the brilliant character dynamics that the creators at Hanna-Barbera were so adept at crafting.
The Lovable Yakky Doodle
Another character who often shared screen space with Snagglepuss was Yakky Doodle, a small, innocent duckling. His naivety contrasted sharply with Snagglepuss’ worldliness, creating a dynamic that was both humorous and heartwarming.
Yakky Doodle’s misadventures often revealed a protective side in Snagglepuss, showcasing the mountain lion’s softer side. The interplay between these two characters added depth to the show, ensuring it appealed to audiences of all ages.
Major Minor: The Inept Nemesis
Major Minor, Snagglepuss’ primary nemesis, was a pint-sized hunter with a large personality. With his booming voice, overly formal speech, and relentless determination to capture Snagglepuss, Major Minor was the perfect foil for our witty protagonist.
Despite his many attempts, Major Minor was never successful in his pursuits, with Snagglepuss always managing to slip away at the last moment. These cat-and-mouse chases added an element of excitement and suspense to the show, keeping viewers on the edge of their seats.
Crossing Over: The Hanna-Barbera World
Snagglepuss also made appearances in other Hanna-Barbera productions like “Wacky Races,” “Yogi’s Gang,” and “Laff-A-Lympics,” among others. Whether participating in zany races or embarking on wild adventures, Snagglepuss always brought his signature flair to the screen.
These crossover appearances expanded the vibrant Hanna-Barbera universe and allowed Snagglepuss to interact with a wider cast of characters, much to the delight of fans.
Jim Parsons Will Be Voicing Snagglepuss
Big Bang Theory’s star, Jim Parsons, is painting the town pink! In a sit-down with The Hollywood Reporter, he walked down memory lane, revisiting his impressive career. The cherry on top? A surprise announcement! Parsons is all set to lend his voice to the legendary Snagglepuss in an upcoming Hanna-Barbera animated series. The actor shared how the character resonated with him as the “first gay totem” of his life.
“I remember feeling, ‘Well, you seem familiar to me. Why is that?’ (Laughs.) To get to bring an extra layer to Snagglepuss, if we get that chance? Oh yeah.”
- Major Operation / 1961-01-30
- Feud for Thought / 1961-02-06
- Live and Lion / 1961-02-13
- Fraidy Cat Lion / 1961-02-20
- Royal Ruckus / 1961-02-27
- The Roaring Lion / 1961-03-06
- Paws for Applause / 1961-03-13
- Knights and Daze / 1961-03-20
- The Gangsters All Here / 1961-03-27
- Having a Bowl / 1961-04-03
- Diaper Desperado / 1961-04-10
- Arrow Error / 1961-04-17
- Twice Shy / 1961-04-24
- Cloak and Stagger / 1961-05-01
- Remember Your Lions / 1961-05-08
- Remember the Daze / 1961-05-15
- Express Trained Lion / 1961-09-16
- Jangled Jungle / 1961-09-23
- Lion Tracks / 1961-09-30
- Fight Fright / 1961-10-07
- Lions Share Sheriff / 1961-10-14
- Cagey Lion / 1961-10-21
- Charge That Lion / 1961-10-28
- Be My Ghost / 1961-11-04
- Spring Hits a Snag / 1961-11-11
- Legal Eagle-Lion / 1961-11-18
- Don’t Know It Poet / 1961-11-25
- Tail Wag Snag / 1961-12-02
- Rent and Rave / 1961-12-09
- Footlight Fright / 1961-12-16
- One Two Many / 1961-12-23
- Royal Rodent / 1961-12-30
What was up with Snagglepuss?
What is Snagglepuss’ most famous catchphrase?
Snagglepuss is best known for the catchphrase “Exit, stage left!” which he often says when making a hasty retreat.
What kind of animal is Snagglepuss?
Snagglepuss is a mountain lion, often portrayed in a bright pink color.
Is Snagglepuss based on a real person?
Snagglepuss’ voice and mannerisms are often compared to actor Bert Lahr, best known for his role as the Cowardly Lion in “The Wizard of Oz.” However, it’s unclear whether Lahr was the official inspiration for the character.
How did Snagglepuss’ character evolve?
Snagglepuss began as a minor character, but his wit and charm quickly resonated with viewers, leading him to star in his show. His character has also been reimagined in comic books, providing a more nuanced portrayal and delving into deeper themes.
Did Snagglepuss ever have his comic book series?
In 2018, DC Comics published “Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles,” reimagining the character as a gay Southern Gothic playwright in the 1950s.