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What's New Mr. Magoo?

USA



Original Air Date:
1977
Channel:
CBS
Prod. Co.:
DePatie-Freleng
Genre:
Series
 

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Characters & Voices
Mr. Magoo - Jim Backus
McBarker - Robert Ogle
Waldo - Casey Kasem
 
Mr. Magoo was a snooty, incredibly near-sighted character who was constantly getting himself into comedic trouble due to his intense myopia and chronic stubborness. Despite his lack of vision, Magoo had been entrusted as the caretaker of his little nephew Waldo, who was always drawn in to his uncle’s mishaps.

Jim Backus, perhaps best known as millionaire Thurston Howell III from Gilligan’s Island, provided the ornery voice for Magoo, before, during, and after the actor’s island stay.

This final TV version of the headstrong old codger premiered on September 10, 1977, with former Magoo studio UPA replaced by the team of DePatie-Freleng. The character was now softened by age and by the producers' desire to see the character more "loveable."

Magoo was also now accompanied by the nearsighted dog McBarker, who was essentially Magoo in canine form. Magoo’s usual tendency to get himself into precarious and hilarious situations was doubled by the presence of McBarker, who was hardly the efficient seeing eye dog his master so obviously needed.

Twenty-six new Magoo cartoons were created under this new title, spread over two seasons. The character subsequently faded into pop culture limbo until a 1997 live action film starring Leslie Nielsen in the title role.
 
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In 1935, cartoonist Sidney Smith signed a contract that would instigate a fatal accident.