On Cartoons and Turtles

Have you ever read a blog so good you find that you like it more and more each day? Besides this one of course. Lately the blog I can’t get enough of belongs to writer Joe Posnanski. Today Joe takes a break from his usual favorite topics, baseball and hot moms, to discuss cartoons and this sent me on a quest to find some cartoons. Pretty soon I was reminded of a decades old cartoon mystery that was solved on this blog last year involving a mostly forgotten Hanna Barbara character called Touche Turtle. Last year when I posted about the show I was unable to locate any clips but thanks to the magic of YouTube a few episodes are now online. This meant that I was able to see a cartoon I haven’t seen in probably 28 years, a cartoon I assumed for years I had imagined (like another show I did make up called Murder Couch) and a cartoon that is responsible for a scar on my face.

Clips of the show and the original post after the jump. Click Keep Reading to do just that.

First, here’s a clip:

There are several others here.

Now for the original post from about a year ago.

Mystery Solved

Last night we solved a 30 year old mystery at our home detective agency with a big assist from WFMU.

If you look closely you can see that I have two scars on my face, both come from accidents as a child that required stitches. The more prominent of the two is well documented, a vertical line almost dead center on my forehead, I got it when I ran into a wall pretending I was riding a motorcycle at about age 4. I don’t remember this happening but my family does because pretending to ride a motorcycle in the house was strictly forbidden after my uncle who was only six years older than me had been playing the same game and ran into the same wall; he also has the same scar. The second scar is next to my left eye and has always been somewhat mysterious to me. Just like the other scar I got the one next to my eye when I ran into something playing a game. Since I was still no more than four years old I don’t remember this one happening either but I asked my mother how it happened when I was about ten years old and she said.

“You hit the end table when you were playing Touché Turtle”
– “What was Touché Turtle”
“A game you were playing with your cousin Gina”
– “What kind of game was it”
“One you just made up, the kind where you hit your head and needed stitches”

My mother’s joking aside she couldn’t remember how Touché Turtle was played and neither could I but I always assumed that it was just something I had made up. I made up a lot of things like a game based on a fake TV show called “Murder Couch” and Carpo, my imaginary friend with the incredibly permissive parents so it made sense to me that I’d invent some game with a ridiculous name and then hurt myself playing it. For years I just assumed that I had imagined Touché Turtle.

Last night I was reading through the WFMU archives looking for things from Listener Kliph who writes excellent pieces about old time show biz types, usually focusing on character actors or overlooked legends of comedy. He also maintains the spectacular Generation Exploitation blog and podcast. Listener Kliph (aka – Kliph Nesteroff) appears about once a week but sometimes I can’t wait that long so I was going through the archives and I found something I had missed, an article on Bill Thompson who is best remembered as the voice of Droopy Dog in the Tex Avery’s MGM shorts. The article outlined Bill’s work on radio, then on TV; I learned he was the original choice to voice Fred Flintstone but then the real surprise was waiting at the end. Bill Thompson was also the voice of a largely forgotten Hanna Barbara character one Touché Turtle. I hadn’t invented him; Touché Turtle was a real cartoon fencing turtle. I was relieved to find out that the cartoon existed because for years I thought I had just invented a very stupid game but now that I have seen clips of Touché I see that he’s pretty awesome, I can’t wait to go home and pretend to be a fencing turtle again. This also gives me hope that there are other things my mother told me I imagined that might turn out to be real, like a time machine or the dentist.

I think we can all agree that a fencing turtle and a dog with a scarf = hilarious.
Do you remember this turtle?



Filed under General Tomfoolery

3 responses to “On Cartoons and Turtles

  1. Ahh yes. “Touché and please go away!” Grumpy turtle.


  2. yeti9000

    Oh my God…I so remember that fencing Turtle. His theme song is kind of scarily familiar to me too…wow! What a total blast from the past, man!

    But the really strange thing is that I also vividly remember watching “Murder Couch” with my Grandma on Saturday nights…is that weird or what?

  3. OK, the thing that has me lying here next to my sleeping husband with tears in my eyes, trying to stifle laughter? The bit about the fake motorcycle driving in the house…that’s funny enough, but when you add in the part about your uncle, showing a GENETIC PREDISPOSITION TO INDOOR PRETEND-MOTORCYCLING CASUALTIES? That, my friend, is comedic gold.

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