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Inspector Gadget is an animated television series developed in joint-venture between France, Canada and the United States about a clumsy, simple-witted detective named Inspector Gadget, who is a human being with various bionic gadgets built into his body. Gadget's arch-nemesis is Dr. Claw, the leader of an evil organization, known as "M.A.D." This was the first syndicated cartoon show from DIC Entertainment (as well as the first from the company to be created specifically for American viewers, along with The Littles and Heathcliff and the Catillac Cats). It originally ran from 1983 to 1986 and remained in syndication into late 1990s.
The series was a co-production between DIC Entertainment (now Cookie Jar Entertainment) in France (the main headquarters did not move to the US before 1987) and Nelvana in Canada; the animation work was outsourced to foreign studios such as Tokyo Movie Shinsha in Japan and Cuckoo's Nest Studio in Taiwan.
[hide]*1 Cast of characters
- 2 Plot
- 3 Episodes
- 4 Inspector Gadget's gadgets
- 5 The Gadgetmobile
- 6 Penny and Brain's gadgets
- 7 MAD
- 8 Conception
- 9 Music
- 10 Reception
- 11 DVD releases
- 12 Film
- 13 Broadcast history
- 14 See also
- 15 References
- 16 External links
Inspector GadgetInspector Gadget is the main protagonist of the series and movies. His fashion sense resembles that of Inspector Clouseau from the Pink Panther movies; his mannerisms also appear to draw on the character of Maxwell Smart, portrayed by Don Adams in the 1960s.
Often cluelessly stumbling through any case he is given, Gadget frequently ignorantly makes foolish and insufferably clumsy mistakes pertaining to surroundings and current environment, mistaking innocent bystanders (and sometimes Brain, his niece Penny's dog) for enemies, and believing that the real enemies are friends. His ineptitude always leads him into danger, but he always gets out of trouble through either his trusty gadgets (most notably his springs), Penny's interference, or pure luck.
The episode "M.A.D. Trap" is one of the few episodes in which Gadget actually shows some competence. When Dr. Claw traps him in a steel foundry, he uses his gadgets flawlessly to save Penny and Brain. Later, in "The Moral," Penny and Brain muse that it was a good thing his gadgets were in top shape. Another example where he shows some genuine police skill occurs in another episode when he makes an earnest effort to catch Claw during a car chase and becomes infuriated when Claw gets away.
In the early episodes Gadget is halfway brilliant and acknowledges Dr. Claw is nearby. After the first few episodes, however, Gadget has become incompetent. Occasionally, he also inadvertently helps Penny solve the case, with his bungling either distracting Dr. Claw or setting things up for Penny to do her work.
The nearest Gadget ever gets to capturing Dr. Claw is in the opening teaser of each episode in which Gadget handcuffs a decoy metal glove, only to have a bomb explode in his face. However, this is meant to demonstrate that Claw always manages to escape justice and was never seen in any actual episode. Gadget's catchphrase is "Wowsers!".
In #9, "Race to the Finish", #11, "A Star is Lost", #22, "Sleeping Gas", #43, "No Flies on Us", #65, "Quizz Master", #73, "The Incredible Shrinking Gadget", #77, "Bad Dreams are Made of This", and #80, "N.S.F. Gadget", Gadget falls victim of the M.A.D. spells. He is voiced by Don Adams.
Main article: Penny (Inspector Gadget)Penny as seen in the show's openingPenny is Gadget's precocious niece and partner. Inspector Gadget is her guardian and caretaker, though often she seems more suited to be his caretaker because of Gadget's clumsiness. Unknown to any of the recurring characters other than Brain, she is a master of investigation and technology who is the one truly responsible for foiling M.A.D.'s schemes. Penny's principal crime-fighting tool is a high-tech Computer Book capable of breaking codes, surveiling buildings and overriding practically any sort of machine or device. Using the book, Penny is able to monitor Gadget's activities and—with Brain's help—surreptitiously help him avoid numerous potential catastrophes that result from his absent-mindedness while uncovering the true nature of Dr. Claw's plot and foiling it. Penny has blonde hair in pigtails and green eyes, and wears a red and white shirt, green pants and red shoes. She has a number of outfits which are worn for certain assignments or free times rather than her normal clothes. In the second season, Penny mostly wears a jacket. She has a number of the perils and plays the helpless damsel-in-distress role, rescued by Brain usually, and escaping by herself sometimes. In the second season, Penny mostly does not have any perils. She is voiced by Cree Summer (then by Holly Berger).
Main article: Brain (Inspector Gadget)BrainBrain the Dog is Inspector Gadget's and Penny's faithful pet dog and companion. He assists her in keeping Gadget out of danger and solving the crime. He is a master of disguise and dresses up in order to watch over Gadget and save him from attempts on his life. Although Brain is in contact with Gadget almost the entire time while he is supposedly solving a case, Gadget never sees through his disguises (and as often as not, Gadget assumes Brain is a M.A.D. agent while ignoring all the real ones). Brain's collar is outfitted with a retractable video communications system linked to a computer wristwatch Penny wears that allows her to relay information on Gadget's activity, or warn Brain as to the whereabouts of M.A.D. agents, like with Flipper the dolphin. Brain can speak a human language, though in a gruff "dog" voice (with a speech impediment featuring constant uses of the letter "r"), similar to Astro of The Jetsons or Scooby-Doo. Sometimes it is impossible to understand what Brain is saying. In a pinch, Brain will resort to pantomime and physical gestures to communicate effectively. Brain usually walks on 2 legs, and is able to function with anthropomorphic capabilities. He is voiced by Frank Welker.
Main article: Doctor ClawDr. Claw is the main antagonist of the series and movies. He is the leader of the evil organization known as M.A.D. He speaks in a deep, menacing, ominous-sounding voice and his face and the majority of his body are never shown throughout the series; only his arms and gloved hands are visible. He is usually at a computer terminal where he monitors his various schemes, often in a creepy old castle. Even though he is aware of Gadget's stupidity, he believes the Inspector to be his greatest nemesis, never fully realizing that it is actually Penny and Brain who foil his plots in each episode (although he or his M.A.D. agents have captured Penny and sometimes Brain a number of times). He is voiced by Frank Welker (and in a few episodes in the first season by Don Francks).
M.A.D. Cat is Dr. Claw's fat pet cat. M.A.D. Cat is always at Dr. Claw's side, usually curled up next to Claw's control panel. M.A.D. Cat serves as a foil for Dr. Claw, often being petted when Dr. Claw is happy, to the point of getting beaten up when Dr. Claw gets angry. M.A.D. Cat "talks" in cat sounds. M.A.D. Cat has an evil, hissing laugh. He is voiced by Frank Welker.
Chief Quimby is Inspector Gadget's short-tempered boss and the chief of Metro City. He has a moustache and is usually seen with a pipe in his mouth. He appears disguised at the beginning of each episode with his own theme music to deliver Gadget his mission only to be blown up by the self-destructing message because of Gadget's obliviousness; he appears again at the end of most episodes to congratulate Gadget on a job well done. He is voiced by Dan Hennessey (then by Maurice LaMarche).
Corporal CapemanCorporal Capeman, voiced by Townsend Coleman, was introduced in the second season and appears in nine non-consecutive episodes as Inspector Gadget’s sidekick. Capeman acts in the manner of a stereotypical crimefighter who is a self-proclaimed superhero and is buck-toothed. He is equally as inept as Inspector Gadget. The two have a student-mentor relationship, though Gadget is rarely teaching anything nor is Capeman learning. (Gadget generally mispronounces his name "Capman" and Penny generally calls him by the nickname "Capey"). Capeman is obsessed with learning to fly and often mistakenly believes he has miraculously acquired the power of flight while in the midst of dire circumstances. His last appearance is in the series' last episode: "Gadget and the Red Rose" (#86). His eight other appearances are in six consecutive episodes, starting with his first appearance in #69, "The Capeman Cometh" and continuing with #70, "Crashcourse in Crime", #71, "Gadget's Gadgets", a brief appearance in #72, "Gadget in Minimadness", #73, "The Incredible Shrinking Gadget", and #74, "Gadget Meets the Grappler". Afterwards, Capeman returns in #78, "Focus on Gadget", where he wants to go into space with Gadget on his mission, but can not because he is sick, but returns in the next episode, #79, "M.A.D. in the Moon". Additionally, Jim Carrey once auditioned for the part of Capeman.
Professor Von Slickstein, voiced by Don Francks in the first season, and in the second season by Andy Goldberg, is a scientist and a creator of Gadget's gadgets. Appeared in one episode of the first season (#5, "The Amazon"), and in three episodes of the second season in which Gadget time travelled with Penny and Brain to stop M.A.D. plans to eliminate Gadget's ancestors.
- Cave Gadget: The earliest documented ancestor of Gadget. Dr. Claw dispatches Thelma Botkin to travel back in time, using a time machine she built, to eliminate Cave Gadget, in order to keep all of Gadget's future ancestors from being born, and at the same time build an army of dinosaurs to destroy Metro City. Gadget, Penny and Brain must go back in time to protect Cave Gadget from the M.A.D. plot. Cave Gadget has a niece resembling Penny and a dog resembling Brain which appears to look more like a mammoth. Appeared in #81, "Tyrannosaurus Gadget".
- Gadgetorum: Ancestor of Gadget, residing in Ancient Rome. Thelma Botkin, a M.A.D. agent, is sent back in time by Dr. Claw to eliminate Gadgetorum, in order to prevent Gadget from being born. Appeared in #82, "Gadget's Roma".
- Char and Chimney Gadget: Ancestors of Gadget, residing in 19th century Victorian era London. Char and Chimney are, as their names imply, chimney sweeps. Thelma Botkin, a M.A.D. agent, is sent back in time by Dr. Claw to eliminate Char and Chimney, in order to prevent Gadget from being born. At the same time, Thelma is dispatched to steal the crown jewels of Queen Victoria. Char and Chimney speak in a Cockney accent. Both appeared in #83, "Gadget's Clean Sweep".
- The Ringmaster: The head of a circus when M.A.D. agents infiltrate the circus, to use as a freely moving base for robberies. Voiced by Dan Hennessey. Appeared in #4, "Gadget at the Circus".
- Madame: A female M.A.D. agent and the owner of the M.A.D. health spa. Voiced by Melleny Brown. She tried to eliminate Gadget, but failed. Appeared in #6, "Health Spa".
- Lana Lamour: An actress and M.A.D. agent. Voiced by Melleny Brown. She is recruited by Dr. Claw to be the female lead in a movie being filmed on location near a top secret military base, as a cover to reveal military secrets. Gadget is convinced she's beautiful and can never be a M.A.D. agent. Appeared in #13, "Movie Set".
- The Prophet: A phony prophet and M.A.D. operative in Hawaii. He appears to be an old man. He tries to warn tourists in Hawaii that a volcano and a shark are coming. Incidentally, M.A.D. has set up both the shark and the volcano, and these are both fake. Gadget appears to befriend him. Appeared in #16, "Volcano Island".
- Prest-O Change-O: An impersonator from England. Voiced by Frank Welker. Presto Change-O is recruited by Dr. Claw to infiltrate a police secrets meeting in London and reveal the secrets. He can morph into any kind of person and has stereotypical "bad" English teeth, even in his various guises. Appeared in #18, "The Infiltration".
- A M.A.D. agent pretends to be Mr. Greenfinger, the scientist responsible for developing a scientific formula that can grow giant vegetables. The agent kidnaps the real Greenfinger and seeks to deliver the formula to Dr. Claw. The phony Greenfinger has an appearance and voice close to that of Henry Kissinger. Gadget thinks he is the true Greenfinger. Appeared in #24, "Greenfinger".
- Rattlesnake Bart: A bandit in the Wild West working for M.A.D. as an operative. Voiced by Greg Duffel. Appeared in #25, "Gadget Goes West".
- The Cuckoo Clockmaker: An insane M.A.D. scientist and inventor from Switzerland. Voiced by Dan Hennessey. He created a watch which will make Gadget's gadgets go berserk on the top of every hour. The factory's clock he designed contains Swiss gold he stole (although Gadget wound up destroying his factory). He attempted to execute Penny, but Brain rescued her before it was too late. Appeared in #28, "The Coo Coo Clock Caper".
- Iji Waruda-san: Dr. Claw's Japanese counterpart. Claw sends Waruda-san the "Pip-1" computer superchip when they are hellbent on world domination. Appeared in #30, "The Japanese Connection".
- Mr. Chow: Dr. Claw's Chinese counterpart, based in Hong Kong. He pets a shi tzu, and had briefly joined forces with Dr. Claw to merge his organization with M.A.D. Gadget is convinced Mr. Chow runs a circus. Appeared in #35, "Eye of the Dragon".
- Dr. Focus: A M.A.D. scientist at the North Pole. His face becomes red and acts freaky when someone calls him mad. He exclaims, angrily, "I'M NOT MAD!" Created a weapon called "Sneezooka" to destroy Metro City, but it was destroyed by Penny's computer book. Appeared in #39, "Gone Went the Wind".
- Pegleg Peg: A female pirate working at M.A.D. She kidnaps millionaires on board a cruise ship in the Caribbean, and demands that the passengers sign over their life savings to her, which she will give to Dr. Claw. Appeared in #41, "Pirate Island".
- Macho Miguel: A M.A.D. agent. He stolen the emerald duck. When he appears, two men appear playing the guitars. Gadget appears to befriend him. Appeared in #47, "The Emerald Duck".
- Dr. Stench: A M.A.D. scientist and the inventor of a formula that changes gold into a green and stinky substance. Voiced by Jeri Cradden. Gadget thinks that he is a medical doctor when he has the flu. He then asks the doctor to find a cure. Appeared in #54, "Smeldorado".
- Professor Mongul: A Tibetian M.A.D. scientist. Hired by Dr. Claw to find crystals which he can then use to build a weather machine with an unusual tropical climate on a mountain housing a compound of Dr. Claw which normally receives snow. Appeared in #56, "Weather in Tibet".
- Sven Vinceton and Pierre LaChop: Two Canadian M.A.D. agents posing as lumberjacks. The agents are recruited by Dr. Claw to destroy the forests of the fictional Thunderbird Park with a formula designed to instantly rot wood. Sven and Pierre are portrayed in a stereotypical Canadian manner, including ending sentences with "eh?" Gadget appears to befriend Sven and Pierre. Sven is voiced by Don Francks and Pierre is voiced by Jeri Cradden. Appeared in #60, "Tree Guesses".
- Louise Lane: A female M.A.D. agent posing as a television reporter. Voiced by Melleny Brown. She tried to steal the treasure of the North African country of Fezug. Gadget appears to befriend her. Appeared in #62, "So It is Written".
- LaDipp: The head of LaDipp's School of Pickpockets, in Nice, France. Voiced by Jeri Cradden. LaDipp's School of Pickpockets is an institution set up to train criminals to be pickpockets, on behalf of Dr. Claw. Students of the school are set up to operate at the carnival in Nice, and are recruited to steal a new "Gadget Watch" which can freeze criminals for ten seconds. Gadget is assigned to shut down the school while on vacation in Nice. Appeared in #64, "School for Pickpockets".
- Angelique: A female student of Ledeppe's School of Pickpockets. Appeared in #64, "School for Pickpockets".
- The Quiz Master: A host of a television game show, Quiz Master, working as a M.A.D. agent. Voiced by Don Francks. Quiz Master is using contestants to rob armored cars across Metro City through the "Cone of Seclusion" by being brainwashed by Dr. Claw and, after this, hearing the words "Going my way?". Dr. Claw will use grand prize winners, and makes Gadget his target when Gadget wins the grand prize on the show, framing Gadget in carrying out his dirty work. At the end of the episode, Quiz Master ended up being brainwashed by Penny after she returned her uncle back to normal. Appeared in #65, "Quizz Master".
- The Great Wambini: A famous magician and a M.A.D. agent. Voiced by Louis Nye. Gadget loves him, but is unaware that he is a M.A.D. agent. Appeared in #66, "Magic Gadget", #67, "The Great Wambini's Seance", and #68, "Wambini Predicts".
- The Lesser Wambini: The Great Wambini's assistant. Voiced by Frank Welker. As a running gag, his magic tricks go wrong. Appeared in #66, "Magic Gadget", #67, "The Great Wambini's Seance", and in #68, "Wambini Predicts".
- Dr. Noodleman: A mad doctor heading a M.A.D. operation to deprive Gadget of his gadget powers. Voiced by Frank Welker, Dr. Noodleman speaks in a German accent. Appeared in the second season, in #71, "Gadget's Gadgets".
- Professor Doomkauf: An inventor, scientist, and operative at M.A.D. Voiced by Louis Nye. Also called Dr. Doomkauf. His name is a play on the word Dummkopf. Doomkauf appears in three consecutive episodes in the second season. He first appears to bring five small creatures resembling rats named the Linguinis to devour Gadget, who thinks they should be protected. In his second appearance, Doomkauf returns to appear at an inventors' convention to show off his new invention, a ray gun that can shrink anything or anybody. Dr. Claw wants him to use the ray gun to shrink Gadget. He does, but then he is shrunken by Corporal Capeman when he finds the gun in Gadget's house. In his third appearance, Doomkauf returns with the Grappler to eliminate Gadget. Appeared in #72, "Gadget in Minimadness", #73, "The Incredible Shrinking Gadget", and #74, "Gadget Meets the Grappler".
- Dr. Spectrum: A M.A.D. scientist and inventor. Voiced by Louis Nye. In his first of three consecutive episodes, Dr. Spectrum is the inventor of a chemical that can make ghosts appear. He then offers to remove the ghosts, like in the movie Ghostbusters, but charges high prices to his customers. His other inventions include using telephones to teleport M.A.D. agents to perform heists and controlling a TV station antenna to make M.A.D. appear in the dreams of citizens of Metro City. Appeared in #75, "Ghost Catchers", #76, "Busy Signal", and #77, "Bad Dreams Are Made of This".
- Dr. Null & Dr. Void: A pair of twin M.A.D. agents appearing in two consecutive episodes in the second season to do Dr. Claw's dirty work in space. In the first of two appearances, Null and Void kidnap scientists on board a space station and build a giant magnifying glass capable of evaporating the Earth's water supply. In their second appearance, they are sent to the moon to strategically place bombs in the disguise of dolls to change the face of the moon to the M.A.D. symbol for Dr. Claw's birthday. Null and Void make a third appearance when they are ordered to control microwave transmissions from satellites and steal money from bank accounts. Gadget is sent into space in all three appearances to stop Null and Void. Null is voiced by Andy Goldberg and Void is voiced by Frank Welker. Both appear in #78, "Focus on Gadget", #79, "M.A.D. in the Moon", and #80, "N.S.F. Gadget".
- Thelma Botkin: A female M.A.D. agent. Voiced by Rita Taggart. Botkin teleported herself with the two M.A.D. agents back to the dinosaur era and send them to the cavemen era to eliminate Gadget's first ancestor. In her second appearance, she teleported herself with the two M.A.D. agents to eliminate Gadgetorum and steal the treasure of Roma. In her third appearance, she travelled to the 19th-century London to eliminate Char and Chimney Gadget and steal Crown Jewels. Gadget time travelled back in time in all three appearances to stop Botkin. Appeared in #81, "Tyrannosaurus Gadget", #82, "Gadget's Roma", and #83, "Gadget's Clean Sweep".
- Les Renowned: Dr. Claw's former teacher and mentor. Voiced by Ron House. Les Renowned resides in a retirement home for former criminals, and offers criminals Dr. Claw wants to recruit in his nefarious plots. Dr. Claw will tend to get these recruits to come out of retirement. Appeared in the last three episodes of the second season (and of Inspector Gadget) in a three story arc, #84, "Gadget Meets the Clan", #85, "Gadget and Old Lace", and #86, "Gadget and the Red Rose".
- G.G.G. Clan: A clan of mobsters in which the leader is former criminal, The Great Great Godfather, who is now in a wheelchair. The clan is based in Sicily. He has five sons. One of them named Eugene is very stupid. Appeared in #84, "Gadget Meets the Clan".
- Sadie and Viola: Two female former criminals. They invite Gadget to their house for tea, picnic, and dinner. One of them mistakenly refers to "Dr. Craw" and makes repeated mishearings of the name "Inspector Gadget", including "Mr. Gizmo". Both appeared in #85, "Gadget and Old Lace".
- Spuds Malone: A former criminal. Voiced by Ron House. He created a weapon called "Red Rose". He was recruited by Dr. Claw and Less Renowned to use the "Red Rose" to eliminate Gadget. Appeared in the final episode of the series, #86, "Gadget and the Red Rose".
- Knuckles: A former criminal and associate of Spuds Malone. Voiced by Andy Goldberg. He was originally called Fingers, but became Knuckles after he lost his fingertips and Spuds Malone still continues calling him Fingers. He usually says he doesn't have the key. Appeared in #86, "Gadget and the Red Rose".
This is a sampling of selected M.A.D. agents or counterparts of Dr. Claw who, with certain exceptions, appeared in one episode. All of the selected agents or villains are those who have names. Other numerous unnamed M.A.D. agents appear in different episodes.
Gadget reading one of the Chief's many exploding messagesGadget works as an inspector for the Metro City police department. His missions often take him to a different exotic locale, generally without giving any explanation as to how a crime on the other side of the earth would be of any interest to, or even within the jurisdiction of, a city police department like the Metro City police, which included in one episode solving a rash of disappearances in the Bermuda Triangle, which turned out to be another M.A.D. plot.
Although there are rare exceptions, almost every episode of the first season follows a standard plot with little variation (many of these elements were tinkered with in season 2):
1: Gadget, Penny, and Brain are engaged in a typical family activity that is interrupted by Police Chief Quimby calling on the Top Secret Gadget Phone. He then appears in an outlandish disguise, anything from a gas barrel, a Gypsy fortuneteller, a turtle shell to even a gargoyle on Gadget's house. In many episodes, Quimby appears accompanied by his theme music.
2: Quimby gives Gadget a mission on a self-destructing sheet of paper. As Gadget reads the message, his eyes dart back and forth while the sound of a typewriter, fax machine, or a camera's shutter (in servo mode) is heard in the background. Often, Penny and Brain are near Gadget and listen to what he reads. A few times, Brain listens by himself. Very rarely, Penny listens by herself. Occasionally, neither one of them listens to what Gadget reads. The last line of the message always reads "This message will self-destruct.", a spoof of the exploding taped messages from Mission: Impossible. The second season often had "Caution: This message will self-destruct" as the final line in the message. Gadget says his catchphrase, which is "Don't worry, Chief, I'm always on duty.", before he crumples the paper, and then unintentionally throws the message back at the Chief and walks away. The message explodes seconds later in Quimby's face (his smoking pipe normally turns black and disintegrates after every explosion). Often, he will groan after the message explodes in his face and he will make some kind of comment afterwards, the most common being "Why do I put up with him?" The only episodes without the exploding paper are "Gadget's Replacement" (#23), where Gadget is replaced by a computer, and "Health Spa" (#6), in which Gadget does not even get a mission. Instead, Gadget slams the door in the Chief's face shortly after Quimby says, "At last, an assignment that didn't blow up in my face." In "M.A.D. Trap" (#20), Gadget does not get an assignment from Quimby, but when it appears that Dr. Claw does not intend to commit any crimes that day, Gadget gives Chief Quimby a paper that reads, "Have you got any assignments for me today? This message will self-destruct." Quimby panics at this and drops it in front of the pigeons he was feeding. While attempting to rescue them, Gadget's message blows up in Quimby's face.
3: Dr. Claw is always somehow visually monitoring this event on his computer from his desk or car, the M.A.D.mobile, and introduces his scheme and usually a new super villain employee to the viewers. The schemes nearly always include trying to eliminate Gadget as well as stealing valuable things. Later on in each episode, when the agents fail in their attempts to eliminate Gadget, Dr. Claw will berate his men for their failures. In some episodes like "Movie Set" (#13), he will restrain his anger towards his female agents, yet he will still let them know that he is disappointed for their inability to get rid of Gadget. In virtually all episodes, Dr. Claw does not hesitate to convey his displeasure whenever his agents fail during their missions.
4: Usually, Gadget tells Penny and Brain the mission is too dangerous for them to come along, and he leaves to carry out the assignment, followed by Brain, and usually, Penny as well. Very occasionally, Gadget takes Penny and Brain along on the mission.
5: Gadget bumbles through his mission oblivious to the dangers and overall situation around him. He frequently makes ridiculous assumptions (such as thinking that the sound of explosions is thunder). His bumbling has gotten him into dangerous situations, yet more often than not, he will also bumble his way out of danger. This will aggravate the M.A.D. agent who is trying to get rid of him. Sometimes, Gadget's actions will injure the M.A.D. agents and, to add insult to injury, Gadget will make a comment to the agent, making him or her feel worse. He also almost always mistakes enemy agents for helpful allies, and vice versa. In "Winter Olympics (a.k.a. Gadget in Winterland)" (#1), "Amusement Park" (#14), "M.A.D. Trap" (#20), "Luck of the Irish" (#44) and "Ghost Catchers" (#75), he is trying to arrest the real enemy agents. In #73, "The Incredible Shrinking Gadget", when Gadget is shrunken twice by Dr. Dummkopf with his shrinking ray gun (later accidentally used by Corporal Capeman inside Gadget's bedroom), Gadget is convinced that M.A.D. has sent him to a giant replica of the Gadget house (despite that most of the episode takes place there), and that the real Penny, Brain, and Capeman are giant M.A.D. replica robots.
6: Brain is always instructed by Penny to follow Gadget to make sure that he does not get hurt: "I'm worried, Brain. You'd better follow Uncle Gadget." Brain makes use of various costumes (although how he gets them is not explained) and often interacts with Gadget, who never recognizes him. Gadget usually considers the disguised Brain to be the main suspect. When intervening to save Gadget from M.A.D. agents, Brain often becomes the victim (along with the agents themselves) instead of Gadget. Gadget himself rarely comes to any harm, and if he does, it is usually self-inflicted. Even when Gadget falls into a M.A.D. agent trap, he always escapes by using his gadgets. Often, Penny calls Brain to discover if her uncle is all right.
7: Meanwhile, Penny investigates the crimes and is usually the one to solve the case with the help of her Computer Book. With it, she can override the controls of just about anything electronic. Penny usually uses her computer book to figure out Dr. Claw's plan. Occasionally, Penny discovers M.A.D. plan by overhearing.
8: Penny often becomes captured while snooping around, and is usually rescued by Brain, although she occasionally escapes herself. This occurred less in the second series.
9: Usually, before Penny solves the case, she calls Chief Quimby to the crime scene. In #49, "Did You Myth Me?", Gadget calls Chief Quimby. In #75, "Ghost Catchers", Brain calls Chief Quimby. By this time, the current super agent in each episode will be close to completing their mission for Dr. Claw.
10: Penny often uses her computer book to save the day. Occasionally, Gadget saves the day by accident. More often than not, Brain aids Penny in saving the day in addition to his job of keeping Gadget safe. Gadget then always gets the credit for solving the mission, with everyone believing that he has in fact stopped Dr. Claw single-handedly. Chief Quimby appears and congratulates him. No one ever suspects that it was in fact Penny and Brain who did all of the work. Typically, they show up and Gadget does not even know how they got there, but he is delighted to see them.
11: After this, Dr. Claw is seen either in his hideout or escaping in his MADmobile, which can turn into an advanced jet or submarine, delivering his catch phrase: "I'll get you next time, Gadget... NEXT TIME!". Dr. Claw's cat, M.A.D. Cat, will usually hiss in agreement. This is not seen in #73, "The Incredible Shrinking Gadget"; instead, Dr. Claw's henchman, Dr. Dummkopf says "I'll get even next time!" when, after he is shrunken by Brain and Capeman, he escapes in a toy airplane owned by Penny. This phrase is also played towards the end of the end credits in every episode.
12: In common with many 1980s children's TV shows, Inspector Gadget's last scene is usually a safety tip (known as a Gadget Team Alert) often relating to the episode (similar to Captain Planet's Planeteer Alerts or the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog "Sonic Sez" segments, which were both DIC cartoons as with Inspector Gadget). During these segments, Gadget is ironically enough teaching intelligent and responsible safety tips - in direct contrast with his dangerous job and risk-taking behaviour in the show; though most of the safety tips (especially those in season 1) had some connection with problems Gadget had experienced during the episode. Every episode from both seasons includes a safety tip.
Main article: List of Inspector Gadget episodes== Inspector Gadget's gadgets== Inspector Gadget's gadgets were the most unusual aspect of the show, and although they are central to his character, they rarely actually do him any good when it comes to solving his case. When using his gadgets, he would say "Go-Go-Gadget...", and then the name of the gadget to be used. However, the gadget he said would not always be the gadget that appeared. Even when he did get the gadget he requested, it would often malfunction.
The Inspector has an indefinite supply of gadgets located all over his body. However, there are several that appear regularly.
- Gadget Binoculars: Binoculars lower down out of his hat and over his eyes.
- Gadget 'Brella: A hand holding an umbrella that comes out of his hat. It can be used as a parachute. More often than not, he will fall rapidly when using his 'Brella' when it turns inside-out.
- Gadget Coat: His trench coat inflates when he pulls one of its buttons and enables him to float — in water or in the sky. It is almost always deflated by being punctured, causing him to shoot through the sky as the air is released before falling from a great height. However, in "Winter Olympics" (Pilot episode, Season 1), Gadget refers to it as "Gadget blimp".
- Gadget 'Copter: Helicopter propeller blades that come out of his hat that enable him to fly. Gadget has a second, "Spare" unit available in the event of failure (episode 9).
- Gadget Cuffs: A handcuff comes out of his forearm just above his hand.
- Gadget Hands: Several mechanical hands can pop out of Gadget's hat. These hands will sometimes hold various objects including a camera, a motorized fan, a spotlight, a can opener, and other useful things. Of course, there are times when they will also be holding something useless or unhelpful to the situation.
- Gadget Legs/Arms/Neck: His neck, arms, and legs can telescope and extend to great lengths. Embedded into his left hand is a crank that can be used to retract the arm (episode 1).
- Top-Secret Gadget Phone: A telephone in his hand. The earpiece is in his thumb, while the mouthpiece is in his pinky finger. This is one of the few gadgets that is not voice activated; Instead, Chief Quimby activates it by calling Gadget. (There is also a regular telephone inside Gadget's hat.)
- Gadget Skates: Roller skates come out of the bottom of his shoes. He is often very clumsy and struggles to keep his balance on the skates. Later in the series, he tries adding his own modifications in the form of rockets that come out from the sides. These have even more glitches than most of his gadgets for their first few appearances.
- Gadget Springs: A spring comes out of his hat, enabling him to bounce, usually when falling head first and hitting his head against the ground. His legs can also extend with springs, which he uses often for jumping and landing.
- Gadget Flower: A mechanical hand holding a big sunflower emerges from his hat and can either spray water or sleep gas towards an enemy.
- Gadget Ears: Metal cones that deploy from his head, around his ears, allowing him to hear better.
- Gadget Lanyard: A mechanical lanyard extends from his belt buckle allowing him to attach himself to various objects
- Gadget Flaps: Mechanical Flaps extend from his waist allowing him to glide smoothly, often used in conjunction with the above allowing him to attach to various forms of transport and escape precarious situations.
- Gadget Hat Doff: When Gadget greets a lady, instead of doffing his hat, a mechanical hand emerges from his hat, in the hand is another hat; from this other hat emerges a second mechanical hand, which is also holding a hat. This gadget was only seen once, in the episode, Do Unto Udders.
- Gadget Periscope: His hat opens and a periscope emerges to see over high objects or when underwater.
- Gadget Tie: His necktie becomes a lasso.
- Gadget Magnets: Magnets come out of the bottom of his shoes. More often than not, the magnets end up sticking to any metallic object with a magnetic attraction, just like Captain Planet's "magnetic" personality. It is sometimes useful when attempting to avoid slipping on slippery surfaces.
- Gadget Mallet: A wooden hammer held in a robotic hand that also comes out of his hat. It usually winds up bopping someone it should not—sometimes even the Inspector himself.
- Gadget Parachute: A relatively small, red parachute which was used only in episode #48, Do Unto Udders; he usually relies on the faulty 'Brella.
- Gadget Respirator: A self-contained breathing mask and the only gadget that Gadget has to physically reach for and pull on as he said his "Go-Go-Gadget" command for it.
- Gadget Refridge-a-Gadget: A gloved hand holding an unmarked aerosol can appears out of his hat and sprays a substance that immediately reduces the surrounding area to subzero temperatures. This gadget was only used in Gadget's Gadgets.
- Gadget Siren: A police light and siren emerge from the top of his hat, it is used in the starting credits.
- Gadget Heel Boosters: flaps at the heel of his feet open and flames thrust out boosting his speed when using Gadget Skates only used in episode #52, Follow That Jet.
- Gadget Skis: a pair of skis that extend out of the front and back of his shoes.
- Gadget Teeth: Gadget's teeth deploy from his mouth and fly about.
- Gadget Wind Sail: A huge wind sail emerges from his hat, which, when combined with Gadget Skis, allows him to wind sail down a snowy track (used in Winter Olympics and Bad Altitude)
- Gadget Radar: A radar emerges from his hat (used in A Clear Case and Dutch Treat)
- Gadget Eyeballs: He could pop out his eye balls and he could control them remotely to roll around and feed back an image for spying purposes (used in episode #12, Bad Dreams are Made of This)
- Gadget Pulley: A mechanical hand holding a pulley on a handle emerges from Gadget's hat to allow him to travel down a gondola cable (used in Amusement Park).
- Finger Gadgets: There are several gadgets inside his fingers, accessed by taking the end off his finger to expose the gadget. These include a flashlight, skeleton key, laser, pen, screwdriver, drill bit, snow gun, corkscrew, water pistol, whistle, balloon inflator, bubble blower, breath freshener, lighter, pez dispenser, scissors, it can snip itself through spring mechanism and toothpaste.
- Gadget Compass: A compass emerges from his hat driving to the north, west, south, and east.
- Gadget Grappling Hook: Activates from Gadget's hat shooting out a hook connected to a line.
- Gadget Gadzooka: He used their gadzooka to shoot down dr claw mobile.
The Inspector can activate each of his gadgets by calling its name, "Go-Go-Gadget Arms!" (for example), but there are times when gadgets appear to be activated by reflex rather than being called, as in Episode 1, Winter Olympics. In this episode, the Inspector also activates some of his gadgets (such as a third hand in his hat, and his extending neck) by simply thinking about it, which is accompanied by a "thinking" or "computer is busy" electronic sound effect. Quite often, either the requested gadget will malfunction, or the wrong one will be activated. When this happens, the Inspector will muse that he desperately needs to get them fixed, although he apparently neglects to ever actually do so. Gadgets also have a tendency to activate en masse whenever the Inspector falls over, sneezes, et cetera — this often occurs at the end of an episode, accompanied by all the characters laughing. The gadgets occasionally seem to have a bit of a mind of their own: in episode #48, Do Unto Udders, one of the hands uses a severe pointing finger to stop Gadget from buying more than one of the expensive MAD products.
Similar to his body, Gadget's car, the "Gadgetmobile", is also fully loaded with a seemingly limitless arsenal of gadgets. It has all of the clichéd features of any fictional crime fighting vehicle (such as the Batmobile or the Mach 5 or a James Bond car, or K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider for instance) including a smoke screen, a siren, laughing gas (referred to as "hilarious gas"), the ability to drop a trail of tacks to blow out a pursuing vehicle's tires, ejector seat, glue rockets, and a claw on the front (referred to as the Gadget Claw). The Gadgetmobile seems to resemble a Mark II Toyota Supra, a Mitsubishi Starion (similar style car, with vents behind the window), or a Bricklin SV-1. A Supra makes a cameo in the Inspector Gadget film, even though in the film, the Gadgetmobile was changed to a Lincoln Continental.
Besides having all of the typical features, it has many specialized ones as well, such as the ability to extend its wheels (not unlike Gadget's arms and legs) to great lengths, and to completely transform into different vehicles altogether, most notably the Gadgetvan, even while in motion. In episode #38 "Don't Hold Your Breath" we see that it can transform into a boat for speeding along water and can also travel underwater in submarine mode. The Gadget Boat features very minorly compared to its other forms of the Gadget Car and Gadgetvan.
At the start of almost every episode the Gadgetmobile is in van mode, probably as it acts as the family vehicle in between adventures. During the course of the episode, usually during a chase of a suspect or rushing to a crime scene after Quimby's briefing, Gadget will call out "Go-Go-Gadget Car!" and the van will transform into a car and speed off faster than the van could go. All of the Gadgets on the Gadgetmobile are voice activated in the same way that the gadgets on his body are activated, by calling its name, "Go-Go-Gadgetvan!" (for example), although when changing into the van and back, he usually moves a lever while saying it.
In The Ruby, Gadget summons the Gadgetmobile while on foot ("Go-Go-Gadget Car!"). The Gadgetmobile then arrives on the scene and, responding to the command improperly, drives straight past him.
It is also, for the most part, quite invulnerable. There are a few occasions where it has taken head-on collisions, attacks, or has fallen from great heights and remained completely intact. While the Gadgetmobile did not have a voice in the series, in all related films, an off-camera voice actor provides one. Its voice actors have been D.L. Hughley (Inspector Gadget, Inspector Gadget 2), Jaleel White (Inspector Gadget's Last Case), and Bernie Mac (Inspector Gadget's Biggest Caper Ever).
As well as the Inspector, Penny and Brain have a few of their own gadgets:
Penny's Computer Book A phonebook-sized machine similar to a modern-day laptop computer. It is capable of hacking into and interfacing with any piece of electronic equipment, and some non electronic equipment, like a safe. The 'book' apparently does not have multiple pages, as exactly the same control configuration is shown whenever Penny is using it. Penny usually carries her computer book in her backpack (she is only seen wearing it when the book is to be used shortly after). In episodes "Down at the Farm" and "Art Heist" she uses her computer book to call Chief Quimby. In episodes "The Invasion" and "Gadget's Gadgets" the book is stolen when Penny is captured. Gadget never knows what Penny is doing on her computer book, but in episode "Gadget's Clean Sweep" when Penny used her computer book to locate the time machine, Gadget finally sees what Penny is doing on her computer book.
Penny's Wristwatch Penny's wristwatch has five known functions:
- It is primarily used to communicate with Brain (in a manner very similar to a modern cellular videophone).
- It is used in most episodes to contact Chief Quimby. While the viewer never hears the Chief speak through the watch, Penny can be heard speaking as though she were responding to him, and he has appeared at least once on the watch's screen during a call (episode 13).
- It can fire a directional laser beam, capable of cutting through a heavy metal door (as seen in quite a few episodes) or merely force it to open.
- It has magnetic abilities, as seen in one episode, while Penny is locked in a prison cell, she uses the watch to attract the keys from a distance to the cell, hence allowing her to free herself.
- It seems to have a weaker version of the book's powers (it was once used to hack into a combination lock and find out the combination).
Whenever the wristwatch's standard time screen is seen in an episode, the time is always the same: 02:30PM.
Brain's communication collar Used for communicating with Penny, Brain's communicator is hidden in his dog collar. When a call is received, the collar's studs extend out around Brain (usually three studs are shown extending, but this number does vary). Normally, the three studs contain a speaker, microphone, and antenna. It also has a tracking device that can direct Brain towards Penny (although he only uses it once). In one episode, the third stud carries a video camera and in another his standard antenna cannot pick up her whereabouts so a satellite dish extends out of the collar (visually similar to an Elizabethan Collar) which helps to triangulate her global position.
MAD is an organization whose chief operation is committing crime, wreaking havoc and operating above the limits of the law. Headed by the mysterious Dr. Claw, MAD would seem to have numerous agents working for it, but on the series only six or seven are seen repeatedly and only the special ones hired from the outside crime world, including Knuckles, Presto Change-O, and Dr. Noodleman, are named. MAD is obviously a spoof on large-scale evil organization (such as SPECTRE and KAOS) with grandiose schemes for world conquest. On some merchandise, MAD is shown as an acronym for "Mean and Dirty" or "Malevolent Agency of Destruction". No mention of this fact is ever made in the series, and it is not considered canon.
MAD corporate identity For a criminal organization, MAD seems oddly enthusiastic about self-promotion and branding. Everything MAD creates seems customized to incorporate the MAD logo, or MAD-like imagery (a stylized cat head with fangs). All MAD agents are given corporate clothing, emblazoned with the MAD logo, even down to the underwear (as seen in Did You Myth Me and Do Unto Udders). All MAD agents drive around in trucks with 'MAD' written on the side. Only once does Gadget recognize the MAD insignia, on a tennis ball that was rolled down a staircase to lure him into a trap.
MAD salute MAD agents often show their respect/allegiance to Dr. Claw by performing the MAD salute. This involves swiftly putting a clenched fist to the side of one's head (occasionally with enough force to knock one unconscious). The salute is used more in later episodes.
MAD Academy MAD has a facility it uses to train prospective agents located under a Metro City skyscraper (MAD Academy). Trainees are indoctrinated in MAD's philosophy and tendency toward self-promotion, as they already wear the official MAD uniform. The facility includes a driving course that is littered with traps. Dr. Claw personally instructs the school's students, and its official slogan is "We Hate Gadget."
The MADmobile The MADmobile is Dr. Claw's personal vehicle. Like the Gadgetmobile, it has a variety of deterrents for use against pursuing vehicles. It is also able to transform into a jet and a submarine. It also has at least one fault, in that the fumes/smoke produced by the "Backfire" weapon carried by the car will back up into the cab of the vehicle if the nozzle is pinched shut (episode 9).
The show was created by Andy Heyward, Jean Chalopin and Bruno Bianchi. The initial idea for Inspector Gadget came from Heyward, who also wrote the pilot episode, Winter Olympics (often syndicated as episode #65, Gadget in Winterland), in 1982 with the help of Chalopin. Chalopin, who at the time owned the DIC Audiovisual studio, helped him develop the format and concept for the rest of the episodes together with Bruno Bianchi, who also designed the final versions of the main characters and served as supervising director.
According to the DVD bonus film "Wowsers", a retrospective featurette with co-creators Andy Heyward and Mike Maliani on the four-disc DVD set Inspector Gadget: The Original Series, Gadget went through around 150 sketches before reaching his final design.
Nelvana writer Peter Sauder was the head writer for Season One, which was co-produced by DiC and the Canadian Studio Nelvana (exactly which/how many writers the first season had is unknown). In Season Two, as Nelvana was no longer part of the production, the show was written by Eleanor Burian-Mohr, Mike O' Mahoney, Glen Egbert and Jack Hanrahan (a former Get Smart writer, among many other things). (Hanrahan and Burian-Mohr would later write the Christmas special Inspector Gadget Saves Christmas as well as the Gadget Boy series - see also Inspector Gadget spinoff incarnations.)
In the pilot episode, "Winter Olympics", Gadget had a moustache. The episode also featured slightly different opening and closing credits. The opening was nearly the same as the regular opening, except for the clips of the Gadgetvan turning into the Gadgetmobile, Penny discovering her watch (an altered version of her discovering her Computer Book), and Brain helping Gadget across a wire are not shown; instead clips from the pilot appear during those scenes. Also, after he activated his Gadget-Copter and spun away, and before cutting to the turnaround shot of Penny discovering her Computer Book, Gadget landed safely on the road in front of an oncoming MAD car, using his Gadget Legs to spring out of the way. The main title of the show was also presented on a green background instead of an orange background. The theme music was exactly the same (only a few on-screen sound effects differed somewhat), as well as on the closing credits, which featured little animations of Gadget using his gadgets. The original credit on the pilot episode also had Dr. Claw watching Gadget from his monitor, saying "I'll get you next time, Gadget... NEXT TIME!" and MAD Cat doing his snarling meow on screen. When the new end credits were made, the same music and voices were reused, something which explains why Dr. Claw's voice is heard during the regular credits while Chief Quimby is seen speaking.
Also noteworthy is that Gadget actually says early in this episode that he is "off duty", while in many following episodes he would say, "I'm always on duty."
- The first had Gary Owens voicing Inspector Gadget in a deep, British-sounding way, which the producers felt didn't quite nail the character. The version with Gary Owens can be found on the Australian "Inspector Gadget - The Original Series, Box Set 1" DVD set. It also has an intro which differs somewhat from the second version.
- Version 1
- For the second version, Jesse White voiced Gadget, this time in a style sounding much closer to the voice of Maxwell Smart (Don Adams) of Get Smart, one of the series' inspirational sources. The producers still weren't completely satisfied with the voice, though, and eventually decided to hire Don Adams himself rather than a sound-alike (Adams began voicing the character from #2, Monster Lake). This version of the pilot episode became the one that was used to sell the rest of the show, and as the first one it has a somewhat unique intro, with several scenes taken directly from the episode rather than being all-original (such as both the Gary Owens version's intro and the regular one). This version was first publicly seen when DiC repackaged the series in the early 1990s, and it carries the title "Winter Olympics" (originally, none of the episodes had their titles displayed onscreen). It can be found on the American DVD releases "Inspector Gadget - The Gadget Files" and "Inspector Gadget - The Original Series".
- Version 2
- When the entire series eventually made it onto the air in 1983, a lot of changes had been made. The changes were so many, in fact, that the pilot episode was no longer coherent with the rest (the biggest and most obvious difference being the Inspector's moustache). This led to a third sound version of the pilot episode being made, with only one scene differing from the second version. In the first scene inside their cabin in Winterland, Penny and Gadget have a re-dubbed dialogue explaining that Inspector Gadget's mustache is only a disguise for the holiday. It has been rumoured that Frank Welker played both Penny and Gadget in this small redub. This version of the pilot, known as "Gadget in Winterland", was used when the show initially aired - it used the regular intro and end sequences and was sorted as episode 65 of the first season. In addition, all syndicated television reruns showed the episodes in this order. It wasn't until DiC repackaged the series in the early 1990s that version 2 was released to the public. Today, the syndicated version 3 of the pilot may be difficult to find.
- Version 3
The first sixty-five 22½-minute episodes were written, designed, storyboarded, and voice-recorded in Canada at Nelvana Animation Studio (which produced the series under DiC's supervision), while being directed (long distance) by French director Bruno Bianchi. Most of these episodes were animated in Tokyo, Japan by Tokyo Movie Shinsha, the studio that animated most DiC cartoons of the 1980s (perhaps also most well-known for their work on Lupin the Third, Tiny Toon Adventures and Animaniacs), while a few episodes were animated in Taiwan by Cuckoo's Nest Studio and Wang Film Productions (the pilot was animated by Telecom Animation Film), before being finished in post production by Nelvana. Since DiC was a French company looking to expand its operations to the US, the show was produced for release in both France and the USA. It was broadcast in the North America in September 1983. A month or so later, the series premiered in France, whose version also featured a theme song with French lyrics and the French title Inspecteur Gadget appearing in front of the episode.
The first season was aired from September to December 1983, comprising sixty-five 22½-minute long episodes. The original pilot episode had a slightly higher budget than the rest of the series. After the first season, the show was a worldwide hit.
In the first season, nearly every episode saw the introduction of some new supervillain who had come to be employed by Dr. Claw to commit a crime suited to their special skills. They are typically arrested at the end of the episode, and do not appear again in the series.
The first season episodes were repeated during the 1984 – 1985 season, with 21 new episodes premiering during the second and last season of Inspector Gadget from September 1985 to February 1986 making 86 in all. Several significant changes were made to the established formula in the cheaper episodes in the second season:
- In the second season, the episodes would be divided into "threes", i. e. three episodes in a row sharing the same general theme (and often the same villains).
- Evil henchmen have recurring roles, appearing in as many as three episodes in a row and, more often than not, not even being arrested after their final appearance.
- The crime would increasingly be simplified down to MAD just trying to get rid of Gadget.
- The Gadget Team moved into a high-tech house filled with many gadgets, where a few of the episodes were actually located.
- Penny didn't get into trouble as often, and her role in the episodes was reduced considerably.
- In the season's fourth episode, the writers introduced Corporal Capeman, Gadget's sidekick. Capeman appeared in nine non-consecutive episodes.
- The animation increasingly began to resemble a typical 1980s Japanese anime cartoon, most likely because it was animated by a different Japanese studio (many season 1 episodes were animated by TMS Entertainment in the first season and often mimicked typical American animation, akin to their work on Tiny Toon Adventures). It was not uncommon for Gadget to briefly freeze in an "anime" pose when shocked, or slower frame rates when characters would move.
- The music would often be misplaced; music cues meant for foreign locations (such as a cue used for a Swiss festival, or one for Ireland) would be played while the Gadget team were right in Metro City or even in their home, etc.
- When production moved from Canada's Nelvana to DiC's headquarters in L. A. for the second season, several of the voice artists (including Cree Summer and Dan Hennessey, who played Penny and Chief Quimby) were replaced. Frank Welker still filled secondary roles, and reprised his roles from the first season.
- Penny added a few items to her wardrobe: While she still sported the patched green pants and her red and white striped shirt, she could occasionally be seen wearing a varsity jacket or a vest as well as carrying a tote bag.
- The characters from Heathcliff and the Catillac Cats make various cameo appearances in the second season, just as Gadget would have cameos in their series.
- In this season, it was often simplified to only Gadget, Brain and the hired MAD agents getting the action parts.
Although these differences lessened parts of the repetition, many of the stories were far weaker and thinner in content and structure than those of the first season, and the animation visibly cheaper. The full reason for the show's cancellation is still unknown.
The theme music for the show was composed by Shuki Levy. Levy has had a long-running partnership with his friend Haim Saban, with Levy composing the music and Saban running the business. Their records company, Saban Records, (now Saban Music Group) has provided music for many DiC cartoons and children’s shows in the 80s and 90s, and is still running today.
Most of the background music cues are some sort of variation of the Gadget melody. Even at festivals or dances in the cartoon, the Gadget theme is usually played. Occasionally during an episode, such as in Launch Time and Ghost Catchers, Inspector Gadget will hum or even sing his theme. Levy also had a range of other musical cues for each character as well as for the various moods of the scenes. Penny and Brain each have several different versions of their respective musical themes.
The theme music is based on Edvard Grieg's movement, "In the Hall of the Mountain King," from his opera Peer Gynt.
A soundtrack LP to accompany the series, named "Inspecteur Gadget - Bande Originale de la Serie TV", was released in France in 1983 by Saban Records. The LP is extremely rare.
The soundtrack features the following tracks:
- Inspector Gadget (with French vocals)
- Penny's Theme (with French vocals)
- Brain The Dog — The Song (with French vocals)
- Gadget on Mars
- Mad Art in Museum
- Gadget in Japan
- Chocolate Factory
- Mad's Theme
- Heroes in African Jungle
- Gadget with the Incas
- Look Out
- Gadget in Trouble
- Arabian Desert
- Sophisticated Gadget
- Train Machine
- Car Race
- Penny's Theme
- Inspector Gadget (Instrumental)
With the exception of the first three tracks, all the music on this album is incidental music directly from the TV series. The album is far from a complete soundtrack, although this would be impossible as there were probably several hours of source music used in the series. Some tracks on the album are more location/episode-specific or for special sequences. There were also at least two other records released by Saban Records (both in French). One of these was the single of the theme music (with French vocals, released both in 1983 and 1985 with different sleeve covers), and another was an audio story named "La Malediction du roi Touthankamon", based on the episode "Curse of the Pharaohs".
An English version of the album was also released in Australia at around the same time through ABC Records. It is substantially similar to the French version with the obvious major change that the vocals are the original English language vocals.
In 2006 — for the first time in 22 years — Cree Summer and Frank Welker reprised their Inspector Gadget roles for the animated sketch show Robot Chicken in a segment of the episode “Adoption's an Option”. The parody was based on the 1983 original series, with Dr. Claw and Brain voiced by Frank Welker; and Penny voiced by Cree Summer. Gadget himself was voiced by Joe Hanna (Don Adams died in 2005), with a brief appearance of Chief Quimby, voiced by Seth Green.
In January 2009, IGN named Inspector Gadget as the 54th best in the Top 100 Best Animated TV Shows.
Inspector Gadget: The Original Series — a four disc DVD set collecting the first 22 episodes, released in North America on April 25, 2006 by Shout! Factory. There are errors on the box concerning which episodes are on each disc. The last episode listed on each disc is actually the first episode on the next disc. 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment would later acquire the rights to the cartoon.
|Cover Art||DVD Name||Ep #||Release Date||Additional Information|
|||Volume 1||22||April 25, 2006||
Inspector Gadget: The Gadget Files — a single disc DVD released by UAV Corporation on July 6, 2004; containing the first five episodes and an interview with Andy Heyward answering 10 questions voted upon by fans.
Inspector Gadget Saves Christmas — a single disc DVD released by UAV Corporation on August 31, 2004; containing the 1992 special Inspector Gadget Saves Christmas and episode 56, 61 and 62 of the original series: "Weather in Tibet", "Birds of a Feather" and "So It is Written". No special features regarding background were included.
Inspector Gadget: The Go Go Gadget Collection — a single disc DVD released by Fox on September 9, 2009. It features 10 episodes not on the volume 1 release.
Australia has had 3 volume sets released by MagnaPacific on November 9, 2006, July 3, 2007, and October 11, 2007.
Inspector Gadget: 25th Anniversary Collection (9 Disc Box Set) — released in Australia by MagnaPacific on November 5, 2008. This release contains the first 64 episodes from the original series' Season One.
Inspektor Gadget: Die komplette Staffel 1 (eng. Inspector Gadget: The complete Season 1) will be released in Germany by More Music and Media on March 19, 2010. It's a 10 Disc Set which includes all 65 episodes from the first Season, but only with german Audio.
(dubbed into Irish and entitled "Gearóid na Gaisce". The literal translation for this title is "Gerard of the Gadgets", the name presumably chosen for its catchiness rather than its meaning)
- ^ a b "Saban Music Group". Saban. http://www.saban.com/html/music.html. Retrieved 2009-06-29.�
- ^ a b "Inspector Gadget". Cookie Jar Entertainment. http://www.cjar.com/cj_shows_gadget.php. Retrieved 2009-06-29.�
- ^ Top 100 Classical Music, http://www.kickassclassical.com/classical-music-popular-famous-best-composers-a-z.html
- ^ "54, Inspector Gadget". IGN. 2009-01-23. http://tv.ign.com/top-100-animated-tv-series/54.html. Retrieved 2009-01-24.�
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