Top Cat (1961–1962)

TV Series   |  TV-G   |    |  Animation, Comedy, Family

Episode Guide
Top Cat (1961) Poster

Top Cat is the leader of a group of alley cats, always trying to cheat someone.




  • Top Cat (1961)
  • Arnold Stang in Top Cat (1961)
  • Top Cat (1961)
  • Arnold Stang in Top Cat (1961)
  • Arnold Stang in Top Cat (1961)
  • Top Cat (1961)

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Cast & Crew

Top Series Cast


Joseph Barbera, William Hanna

Reviews & Commentary

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User Reviews

22 August 2006 | pizzawarrior1956-1
| All-time classic series; now complete on DVD
I must admit that I was never a big fan of this show, but after learning that at long last, Warner Home video had issued the COMPLETE SERIES on DVD recently, I just had to take a look; especially since this may be the ONLY chance to view it unless my cable system decides to offer the Cartoon Network's BOOMERANG channel sometime soon.

Despite the fact that the original run of this series was only from 1961-62, "TOP CAT" still has a cult following, as well as a high place on the top 100 Cartoons of All-Time.

From my point of view, the only apparent fault I could find was that some of the episodes could have much shorter; though I am sure the purists out there would disagree.

The four DVD set contains all 30 original episodes, and includes the pilot about the gang's trip to Hawaii, as well as some priceless background information for the serious fanatic out there.

Like other animated prime-time series ("The Flintstones", "The Jetsons", "Rocky & Bullwinkle"), this played to an adult audience as well as the kids; which explains the wide appeal of this program, and its continued durability after 40+ years.


As for quality, all of the episodes have been digitized and restored to their uncut brilliance, complete with the original laugh tracks, that is if you like that kind of thing.

As a result, the show seems not to have aged at all, and consiering that the scripts were first-rate to begin with, it really hasn't.

It is hopefully apparent that along with our other favorites from this Golden Age of 'TV-toons', Warner will make sure that this trend continues; and considering that Hanna-Barbera virtually owned Staurday morning as well as prime time, we should be looking forward to other collections very soon; allowing us baby-boomers to relive our childhoods once more, and share with future generations who otherwise have been deprived of genuine quality entertainment.

After all, if people are willing to pay top dollar for these 'blasts from the past', there isn't much out there anymore to watch.

Critic Reviews

Did You Know?


The show was a parody of The Phil Silvers Show (1955), with Arnold Stang imitating Sgt Bilko's voice for the character of Top Cat. Benny the Ball was voiced by Maurice Gosfield who played Pvt Duane Doberman in The Phil Silvers Show. Benny and Pvt Doberman both shared the same demeanor and rotund appearance.


Professor Zimbach: This man has artistic temperament, like Van Gogh. You know, the painter who cut off his ear and sent it to his girlfriend.
Top Cat: Oh, yeah, to ask her why he hadn't heard from her.


In the opening title song "Top Cat" (seen in every episode) the waiter should be shown in front of the lunch box on the table. His torso is behind the box until Top Cat jumps up and runs for the taxi. At that point the waiter "pops" fully in front of the lunch box. This was related by Arnold Stang on the DVD commentary and he was very annoyed (even years later!) that the studio would let such an error occur every week.

Crazy Credits

The opening credits feature Top Cat entering a high-class restaurant to have lunch... which he picks from a construction worker working across the restaurant. He escapes from the maitre'd and the worker into a taxi and gets away (originally the series title appears on a blind TC pulls down in the taxi - later versions feature the title as TC gets into the taxi).

Alternate Versions

UK broadcast versions replaced the last shot of the opening titles with a freeze frame of TC standing next to the title BOSS CAT on a blue background. However, he was still referred to as 'TC' and 'Top Cat' in the episodes and the title song as it was not re-dubbed. The end titles were edited to remove the 'Top Cat' billboard at the start, beginning instead with the pan down to the trash can. There was then an abrupt jump where the 'Top Cat' title normally appears to the 'A Hanna Barbera Production' title, missing out TC reaching for his hat, and jumping straight to him reaching for the lid, making his hat inexplicably appear on his head. These titles looked extremely grainy and washed out compared to the episode. The UK VHS releases from Guild/Worldvision however retained the original title, although they had the same grainy opening/closing titles. These were a slightly different edit - not having the missing footage from the end of the opening titles, the missing jump cut footage from the end credits was edited into the opening titles to keep the song fully intact, but inexplicably had TC going into bed at night following the restaurant scene. The end titles re-inserted the missing footage of TC into the end credits too, but had to freeze frame the last few seconds of the footage to make up for lost footage as the opening billboard scene (as per the broadcast version) was still missing (this kept the closing song intact also).


Plot Summary


Animation | Comedy | Family


Release Date:

27 September 1961



Country of Origin


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