Kissyfur is an American animated children's television series which aired on NBC in the 1980s. It was produced by Jean Chalopin and Andy Heyward and created by Phil Mendez for DIC Animation City. The series was based on a half-hour NBC special called Kissyfur: Bear Roots and was followed by three more specials until its Saturday morning debut. The show ran for two seasons. It also aired on the BBC (as part of its But First This lineup becoming the only cartoon made for the BBC during that block), TCC and Nickelodeon in the UK, ATV World in Hong Kong, SABC1 and SABC2 in South Africa, TVP in Poland, TV3 in New Zealand, Sirasa TV in Sri Lanka, SBT in Brazil, MediaCorp Channel 5 in Singapore, JBC, SSTV and Television Jamaica in Jamaica, RTB in Brunei, Namibian Broadcasting Corporation in Namibia, GMA Network in the Philippines, Armed Forces Network in Germany, Canal+ in France, Israeli Educational Television in Israel, NCRV in the Netherlands and Seven Network in Australia.
|Created by||Phil Mendez|
|Voices of||Michael Bell|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||26|
|Executive producer(s)||Jean Chalopin|
|Running time||30 minutes|
|Production company(s)||NBC Productions|
DIC Animation City
Saban Entertainment (1988)
|Original release||September 13, 1986 –|
August 25, 1990
The show follows the adventures of Gus and Kissyfur, a father and son bear duo who had joined the circus. One day on a circus trip, the train they are riding in derails and the bears escape to a new life in the swamps of Paddlecab County. There, they protect the local swamp's inhabitants from the local bumbling alligators Floyd and Jolene. Kissyfur and his father use the skills they have acquired from the human world to create a boat tour business transporting other animals and their products down the river.
- Gus (voiced by Ed Gilbert) - Kissyfur's widowed father, who owns a Paddlecab company, taxis animals from one side of the swamp to the other. He can be a bit goofy at times, but is a very good father. He's the only one of all the swamp parents who can take on both alligators, Floyd and Jolene, and run them off.
- Miss Emmie Lou (voiced by Russi Taylor) - A blue bear who wears a flower behind one ear. She's the schoolteacher in the swamp and has a southern accent. She has a sister named Jimmie Lou and a cousin named Ernie. She's also sweet on Gus.
- Charles' (voiced by Lennie Weinrib) — A warthog and Lenny's father, Charles thinks he has everything figured out most of the time, but is usually more brawn than brains.
- Ralph — A packrat who has a bad habit of stealing things from the residents of Paddlecab County.
- Howie — A mocking bird who can throw his voice and can mimic anything and everyone. This talent often gets him into trouble.
- Uncle Shelby (voiced by Frank Welker) - A wise turtle who is the elder of the swamp.
- The Cackle Sisters — Two chicken sisters. One of them talks and is very prim and proper, while the other one just clucks, usually agreeing with whatever her sister says. She is referred to as Claudette.
- Floyd (voiced by Stu Rosen) - An alligator who along with Jolene is always hatching a plan to try and capture the swamp cubs so they can eat them for dinner. He isn't the brightest, often making dim-witted remarks.
- Jolene (voiced by Terence McGovern and later Doug Parker) - An alligator who wears a red wig. She and Floyd are always trying to capture the swamp cubs so they can eat them for dinner. She would be considered the brains between the two, but not by much. She has a low tolerance for Floyd's dim-wittedness, which usually results in her smacking him with her wig.
- Flo (voiced by Marilyn Lightstone) - A smug buzzard.
- Kissyfur (voiced by R.J. Williams and later Max Meier) - Gus's son and the title character of the series. He and his father used to work in a circus, along with Kissyfur's mother, who died in a performance accident. After the circus train they were in crashed, Kissyfur and his father ran into Paddlecab County and that's when they have been living since. He is an eight-year-old bear cub who loves to pretend and occasionally gets into trouble with the rest of the cubs.
- Stuckey (voiced by Stu Rosen) - A purple porcupine who is very gloomy. He talks slowly and is the quiet one of the group.
- Beehonie (voiced by Russi Taylor) - A white bunny who has a crush on Kissyfur, she is the only female swamp cub and tends to act as the voice of reason at times.
- Duane (voiced by Neil Ross) - A pig who loves to clean and freaks out if he gets dirty.
- Toot (voiced by Russi Taylor) - A six-year-old beaver, Toot is the youngest of the swamp cubs. He looks up to and idolizes Kissyfur. His Nose changes from Pink to black in Season 2.
- Lenny (voiced by Lennie Weinrib) - Charles's son, Lenny would technically be the bully of the group. He tries to act tough, though this sometimes fails if he's really scared of something. Enjoys being bossy and pushing the other cubs around. Refers to Kissyfur as "Sissyface".
- Donna (voice by Russi Taylor) - Miss Emmy Lou's niece. Her only appearance is in the second special, "The Birds and the Bears".
1. Bear Roots
- Kissyfur is a circus bear cub who recently lost his mother, who was tragically killed during a circus performance. After a particularly taxing night performing in the circus, Kissyfur and his father Gus escape captivity in order to live a better life in the forest. However, instead of living peacefully, the two soon discover that their new home (the swamp), while much more friendly than the circus, has its shares of dangers... namely the local alligators! Will Kissyfur and Gus be able to adjust to swamp life, or are they set to be a gator's meal?
2. The Birds and the Bears
- The arrival of a new, female swamp cub has the boys making a serious personality change (except Toot)! Is there a way to snap them out of this new (and unpleasant) demeanor, or are the kids doomed to be troublemakers and thugs for the rest of their lives?
3. The Lady is a Chump
- Tired from caring for their kids and the other stresses of life in the swamp, the adults hire a seemingly reputable nanny to care for the swamp cubs. Unbeknownst to all, the "nanny" is really Floyd in disguise! Can the adults discover the ruse in time, or are the cubs going to bed for good?
4. We Are the Swamp
- A massive drought has turned the swamp into a veritable wasteland, with all the big figures keeping the water that still remains for themselves. How can the swamp cubs hope to beat the heat?
Season 1 (1986)
- Here's the Beef/Jam Wars
- The Humans Must Be Crazy/To Tell the Tooth
- Whale of a Tail/Kissyfur P.I.
- Home Sweat Home/Pooped Pop
- The Bear Who Cried Wolf/Egg McGuffin
- Drop Me a Lion/The Wishing Box
- Gatoraid/Basket Case
- The Incredible Hunk/Double Dare Bear
- Bearly a Bodyguard/The Duck Who Came to Dinner
Season 2 (1988)
- The Great Swamp Swami/The Shell Game
- Just in Time/Three's a Crowd
- My Fair Lenny/G’Day Gator and G’Bye
- Fork-Tongued Frog/Like Father, Like Son
- Berried Alive/Toot's Treasure
- Cub's Club/You Ain’t Nothin’ But a Hound Dog
- Stuck on Stuckey/Flipzilla
- The New Cub/Comrade Kissyfur
- See Ya Later, Annie Gator/Evilfur
- Swarm Outside/Halo & Goodbye
- The Ballad of Rebel Racoon/Somethin’ Cajun's Cookin’
- Got Those Baby Blues/Home Sweet Swamp
- The Great Swamp Taxi Race/Weight Not Want Not
The Los Angeles Times observed that "the lush backgrounds and some of the character designs owe a lot to Walt Kelly’s “Pogo”; all that’s missing is the imagination, wit and draftsmanship" and criticized that "the directors time the comedy material so badly that the jokes land with a thud." In 2014, Rob Bricken of io9 included Kissyfur in his list of a "dozen '80s cartoons that don't deserve to be remembered at all, let alone fondly."
Home media releases
- Erickson, Hal (2005). "Kissyfur". Television Cartoon Shows: An Illustrated Encyclopedia, 1949 through 2003. 1 (A—L). McFarland & Company. p. 483. ISBN 978-0-7864-2099-5.
- "Saturday Morning: Good And Bad". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-10-15.
- Bricken, Rob (11 November 2014). "12 Cartoons From The 1980s No One Will Ever Have Nostalgia For". io9. Retrieved 11 September 2016.