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 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 6:53 PM   
 By:   Jon A. Bell   (Member)

In 1966, a TV show premiered called "T.H.E. Cat." Starring Robert Loggia as a former circus acrobat/cat burglar, the show only lasted one season (it apparently was cancelled quickly because of violence.)

Anyway, I've had the music for this show running through my head for 40 years, ever since I saw this as a little kid -- and after seeing some episodes recently (on *ahem* questionable DVDs), I was wondering: is there ANY chance whatsoever that tapes to these scores still exist? The theme was by Lalo Schifrin; the episode scores were by Schifrin and Gerald Fried (!), and they're dynamite! (Think super-cool 1960s jazz, similar to U.N.C.L.E., Mission Impossible or I, Spy.)

The show (and its original prints) are apparently long-gone (and it was a Paramount production, for NBC), but man... if there were any tapes still surviving of the episode music, I'd LOVE to get it on CD!

For more info:

http://epguides.com/THECat/guide.shtml
http://www.televisionheaven.co.uk/cat.htm
http://www.thrillingdetective.com/cat.html
http://www.tv.com/t.h.e.-cat/show/4586/summary.html
http://imdb.com/title/tt0060030/

-- Jon

P.S. If you want to see the show's opening, go to YouTube and search for "Loggia Cat." The direct link is:

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=loggia+cat

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 8:08 PM   
 By:   Stefan Miklos   (Member)



P.S. If you want to see the show's opening, go to YouTube and search for "Loggia Cat."



Fabulous!

For the anecdote, one year earlier, Robert Loggia appeared as a circus director and a counterfeiter-thief in the season 1 episode of "The Wild Wild West" entitled:

"The Night of the Sudden Death"

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 8:12 PM   
 By:   shadowman   (Member)

Yeah,I remember this one. It's one of my favorites. Jon, when you say the original prints are gone,then that means no possible chance of a DVD release? Say it ain't so!

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 8:12 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

Was this theme recorded anywhere for LP?

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 8:24 PM   
 By:   Jim Wilson Redux   (Member)

Yeah, I remember this. It debuted the year NBC hired film-poster artists to do artwork to sell the shows...I fondly recall the ones for "I Spy" "The Man from U.N.C.L.E." and some new series called "Star Trek." The one for Thomas Hewitt Edward just had his figure with his grappling-hook in full back-swing.

This was the show I really wanted to watch that year. The promos were great. Sadly, I didn't see too many of them.

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 8:38 PM   
 By:   Disco Stu   (Member)

The theme was by Lalo Schifrin; the episode scores were by Schifrin and Gerald Fried (!), and they're dynamite! (Think super-cool 1960s jazz, similar to U.N.C.L.E., Mission Impossible or I, Spy.)

I'd LOVE to get it on CD!


Gerald Fried and a action series in the time of U.N.C.L.E.! Oh man count me in on wanting that CD very veeeeeery much.

I never saw the series. I have comics of it, and a picture of an MPC kit that was made of his car. I never found out what the acronym stands for.
Man I sure hope FSM is reading this thread.

Kind regards.

DS.

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 10:15 PM   
 By:   Bill Finn   (Member)

Was this theme recorded anywhere for LP?

Jazz organist Jimmy Smith recorded this on one of his Verve albums, if I remember correctly. And that's a big IF.

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 10:36 PM   
 By:   Steve Johnson   (Member)



Gerald Fried and a action series in the time of U.N.C.L.E.! Oh man count me in on wanting that CD very veeeeeery much.

I never saw the series. I have comics of it, and a picture of an MPC kit that was made of his car. I never found out what the acronym stands for.
Man I sure hope FSM is reading this thread.

Kind regards.

DS.


I do remember the show, and it's odd that it didn't fare well enough for a season's renewal. By the way, T.H.E stood for Thomas Hewitt Edward , Loggia's character's name.

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 10:52 PM   
 By:   Disco Stu   (Member)

T.H.E stood for Thomas Hewitt Edward , Loggia's character's name.

Thanks for that info. The answer to a question I've had for decades (ever since I saw the picture of the that car modelkit).
I've looked up Robert Loggia, and now I know who he is, it would be fun to see that series. He plays bad guys mostly, and wouldn't be my first choice for an action hero. All the more fun that he wás choses. I love those un-obvious choices (like Patrick Mc Goohan in the prisoner). The same kind of thing that makes me wish that I could see what Star Wars would have been if Han Solo would have been portrayed by Christopher Walken (I think I would have liked the Han character more).

Kind regards.

DS

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 10:55 PM   
 By:   Jon A. Bell   (Member)

Yeah,I remember this one. It's one of my favorites. Jon, when you say the original prints are gone,then that means no possible chance of a DVD release? Say it ain't so!

According to one website, the prints (or maybe later tapes) of the show were discarded, but low-quality (*mumble*bootlegs*mumble*) survived from a set of Canadian prints/tapes.

Also, from what I've read, the show was the first of the 1966 season to get cancelled, specifically because of violence -- and having seen a few (low-quality) episodes, I'm not surprised. It's DAMN violent for a 1960s show, with shootings and stabbings galore.

It's very film noir-ish, and virtually every episode has Robert Loggia encountering some bad guys who've threatened/attacked/kidnapped/killed a friend of his... and then Loggia would wreak pretty serious violence upon them. (And for a hero/protagonist, he seemed to have no qualms about killing any bad guy who got in his way. I've heard that this was what also got "Wild, Wild West" cancelled -- Congress had hearings about TV violence in the 1960s, and James West's penchant for simply shooting bad guys had some serious consequences in the later seasons.)

But even as a 5 or 6 year old kid, I thought Robert Loggia was cool as hell. He wore black turtlenecks, drove a black 1966 Corvette, carried grappling hooks, scaled tall buildings, used martial arts moves (kicks and throws), and had a knife up his sleeve, which he would often whip out and throw at people -- sometimes to fatal effect.

And finally, two musical points: Al Hirt did a version of the "T.H.E. Cat" theme on his album "The Horn Meets the Hornet." I'm not a fan of this version, though, because the trumpet is WAY too "blatty-wah-wah" for my tastes.

Also (attention Bill Smith), Lalo Schifrin did the Jimmy Smith theme you mentioned above -- it's called "The Cat," but it's not the same as the "T.H.E. Cat" theme.

http://www.vervemusicgroup.com/product.aspx?ob=prd&src=list&pid=10255

-- Jon

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 11:03 PM   
 By:   Steve Johnson   (Member)

I remember reading back in 1969 when I was in 7th grade that CBS didn't renew WILD, WILD WEST due to criticism over violence. Frankly, I never saw it that way, if it was violent, it was wildly stylized.

 
 Posted:   Mar 13, 2007 - 11:05 PM   
 By:   Jon A. Bell   (Member)

I remember reading back in 1969 when I was in 7th grade that CBS didn't renew WILD, WILD WEST due to criticism over violence. Frankly, I never saw it that way, if it was violent, it was wildly stylized.

This was also the reason why the 1960s Hanna Barbera superhero cartoon shows (like Space Ghost, The Herculoids, etc.) were cancelled -- people thought they were too violent for kids.

-- Jon

 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2007 - 12:40 AM   
 By:   George Komar   (Member)

Lalo Schifrin did the Jimmy Smith theme you mentioned above -- it's called "The Cat," but it's not the same as the "T.H.E. Cat" theme.

http://www.vervemusicgroup.com/product.aspx?ob=prd&src=list&pid=10255

-- Jon


Henry Mancini also recorded Schifrin's The Cat, but alas it's not T.H.E. CAT.

http://www.amazon.com/Mancini-67-Band-Sound-Henry/dp/B000027S5T

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2007 - 1:04 AM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

Yeah, I remember this. It debuted the year NBC hired film-poster artists to do artwork to sell the shows...

YES! And do you remember the big sell?
"Are you ready...for NBC week? We'll be ready for YOU."
LOL haven't thought of this in ages; crap, I was like 10

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2007 - 1:07 AM   
 By:   The_Mark_of_Score-O   (Member)

Boy, this brings back memories, and pleasant ones, at that. I really liked this show when I was a kid, and was saddened when it was canceled.

What a treat to see the opening credits to the show on YouTube.

About five years ago I chatted up Robert Loggia, who was at a screening of some Showtime film at the Paramount Studios theatre, and asked him about T.H.E. Cat; his reaction was somewhere between surprise that anyone remembered it (though I didn't recall many details; there was a Dell Comics -- or Gold Key; I can't recall which -- tie-in published in '66 that I remember my aunt buying for me), and fondness for a piece of his lost youth. Since the show's first airing I've been a fan of his (one of my disappointments with BIG is that his character's relationship with the Tom Hanks character doesn't really go anywhere; after the memorable scene on the giant piano keys in F.A.O. Schwarz -- the only scene most people remember from that film -- the two characters' interaction just stops).

As for what the "T" in T.H.E. Cat stands for, if your name were Tom Cat (anticipating Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes by forty years, perhaps), wouldn't you hide behind a mysterious initial?

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2007 - 1:14 AM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

Any time I have seen him in anything his role as Cat immediately came to mind. Indelible thing. Weird how that works.

 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2007 - 1:29 AM   
 By:   CAT   (Member)

I vaguely remember this show being on the air, but never watched it. Strange, huh?

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2007 - 1:59 AM   
 By:   cryptkicker5   (Member)

The Wyncote All Stars do a really nice version of The Cat Theme on one of their Secret Agent cash-in records, which is really worth tracking down.

I bought my copy from a neighbor of mine down the street for a quarter at a garage sale. When I asked my neighbor about the show, he said he liked it and that was one of the reasons he bought the record originally.

Another candidate for Brilliant but Cancelled?

 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2007 - 3:47 AM   
 By:   Jon A. Bell   (Member)

The Wyncote All Stars do a really nice version of The Cat Theme on one of their Secret Agent cash-in records, which is really worth tracking down.

I'd love to hear it, but I'm having difficulty tracking it down on eBay or other web sources. If you could point me to a site that might have a copy, I'd really appreciate it. Thanks!

-- Jon

 
 
 Posted:   Mar 14, 2007 - 4:22 AM   
 By:   shadowman   (Member)

Yeah, I remember this. It debuted the year NBC hired film-poster artists to do artwork to sell the shows...

YES! And do you remember the big sell?
"Are you ready...for NBC week? We'll be ready for YOU."
LOL haven't thought of this in ages; crap, I was like 10


Do you remember any of the music which accompanied the promos for NBC week. The promos played frequently in between programs airing on NBC during the summer of 66'. I remember spending most of the daytime watching NBC game shows during the week just to hear that great music which accompanied the promos. The one
daytime game show which debuted earlier in 1966 which I recall was "Chain Letter"
hosted by Jan Murray. He would present a subject to the contestants,such as name
the states,and then one contestant would
name a state,and the other contestant
would have to name another state which began with the last letter of the state
named by the first contestant. For example: New York,Kansas,South Dakota,Alabama,Arkansas, etc. until one contestant was unable to continue the chain. I don't think the show lasted more than a year,possibly less,but a great show,and a great venue for a comic talent like Jan Murray. I waited with
high anticipation for those commercial breaks,hoping that the NBC week promo would come on, with that great music.
1966-1967,my favorite year for t.v. shows.

 
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