Television Tuesday bannerAlfred Hitchcock Presents – “There Was an Old Woman”

Alfred Hitchcock Presents Season 1 DVD

Original Air Date: March 18, 1956
Starring: Estelle Winwood, Charles Bronson, Norma Crane
Directed by: Robert Stevenson

Cat Out of the Bag Alert!  This review contains some spoilers for this episode!

Synopsis: A desperate couple named Frank and Lorna Bramwell (Charles Bronson and Norma Crane) visit the home of the elderly Monica Laughton (Estelle Winwood) hoping to rob the senile woman of her hidden riches.

Featured Feline: Monica Laughton owns an orange tabby cat named Tippie who is featured in several scenes.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents - There Was an Old Woman - orangy tabby cat Tippie on chair behind Monica Laughton Estelle Winwood

The Bramwells are surprised when they are invited inside the Laughton home and find Monica staging a funeral with a body and guests who are not really there. Monica talks to her invisible guests and then scolds Tippie, who is lying on a chair. She says he is getting fat and lazy and not going after the mice like he should.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents - There Was an Old Woman - orangy tabby cat Tippie on chair with Monica Laughton Estelle Winwood

Tippie is also present at the dinner thrown by Monica for the same imaginary guests complete with imaginary food. The Bramwells are more than disappointed.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents - There Was an Old Woman - orangy tabby cat Tippie on table with Estelle Winwood Charles Bronson and Norma Crane

Alfred Hitchcock Presents - There Was an Old Woman - orangy tabby cat Tippie on table with Lorna Norma Crane

The next morning Monica finds Tippie with his nose in a bowl in the kitchen.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents - There Was an Old Woman - orangy tabby cat Tippie with nose in bowl in kitchen

Alfred Hitchcock Presents - There Was an Old Woman - orangy tabby cat Tippie scolded by Monica Estelle Winwood

She scolds Tippie and explains that she is making cupcakes for the mice and includes rat poison to get rid of them.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents - There Was an Old Woman - orangy tabby cat Tippie beside mixing bowl

It is very likely that members of the cat team known as Orangey played the role in this episode.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents - There Was an Old Woman - orangy tabby cat on chair behind Monica Laughton Estelle Winwood

Final Mewsings: Cats have no problem sharing space with imaginary people.

Many thanks to Ted Davis who spotted this Television Tabby for us!


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Hot Stuff (1971)

National Film Board of Canada (NFB)
Starring:
 Don Arioli, Gerald Budner, John Howe
Directed by: Zlatko Grgic

Cat Out of the Bag Alert!  This review contains some spoilers for this film!

Synopsis: A cautionary animated tale about man’s relationship with fire from ancient times to the present.

Cartoon Cat: The cat comes in during the modern section of the film when we see a man named Ralph, his wife and their cat at home. The cat is pink with purple spots on his tail.

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail and Ralph angry

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail and Ralph watching television

Ralph just wants to watch television but his wife wants to watch while ironing and then asks him to make some coffee and toast for her during a commercial break. As Ralph does this the cat follows him around asking for cream.

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail and Ralph in kitchen

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail and Ralph still in kitchen

As the tension builds and more and more appliances get plugged in dangerously the cat keeps asking for some cream.

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail and Ralph by refrigerator

The cat finally asks for anything, not being choosy, but continues to be ignored.

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail pats Ralph's head

Ralph returns to the television and the cat reminds him that cats need their cholesterol.

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail and Ralph by television

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail panting with Ralph watching television

Ralph’s wife brings him the sugar in a canister and the cat asks if there’s a mouse in there.

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail looking down at canister

Eventually everything catches fire and Ralph and his wife scramble to put it out. But the cat sits back and waits for a hot mouse. “A Mouse Flamboo!”

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail looking at fire

Hot Stuff - pink cat with purple spots on tail licking lips

Final Mewsings: Cats become less choosy the hungrier they get.


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Zoo Piece (1990)

Les Films du Jeudi
Directed by:
 Chris Marker

Synopsis: The fifth of a series of short films focusing on animals by director Chris Marker. Animals at the zoo and behind bars and cages are featured.

Reality Cats: Most of the film focuses on wild animals such as bears, wolves, rhinos, etc. But at the end several cats are seen in cages and behind bars.

Zoo Piece - white cat in mesh cage

Zoo Piece - white cat claws on mesh cage

Zoo Piece - black and white cat behind bars

Zoo Piece - close up of cat's face behind mesh cage

Zoo Piece - white and tabby cat in mesh cage

Final Mewsings: Are cats usually found in a zoo?


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Chandu the Magician (1932)

Chandu the Magician poster

Fox Film Corporation
Starring:
 Edmund Lowe, June Vlasek, Bela Lugosi
Directed by: William C. Menzies, Marcel Varnel

Cat Out of the Bag Alert!  This review contains some spoilers for this film!

Synopsis: Chandu (Edmund Lowe) uses his training as a mystic yogi to try to stop madman Roxor (Bela Lugosi) from coercing scientist Robert Regent (Henry B. Walthall) into giving up the secret of his death ray.

Cat Burglar (Scene Stealer): In one scene a bad guy attempts to lure Regent’s daughter, Betty Lou (June Vlasek) from her room by placing a white kitten outside the door while a sandstorm is taking place.

Chandu the Magician - white kitten outside door

If you look closely at the shot of the man’s hand placing the kitten by the door it’s clear the kitten is tethered to the door with some kind of filament or wire. As such the kitten is unable to move away from its mark.

Chandu the Magician - white kitten outside door animated gif

Betty Lou look out and sees the kitten. Chandu then sees her reaching for the kitten in his crystal ball as the bad guy grabs her arm and pulls her outside. Moments later when everyone runs outside to help her the kitten is nowhere to be seen.

Chandu the Magician - white kitten tethered outside door

Chandu the Magician - white kitten looking up at door

Chandu the Magician - white kitten outside door in crystal ball

Final Mewsings: Kittens don’t like helping bad guys or being tethered.

Many thanks to Ted Davis for reminding us of this screen cat!


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Hand in Hand (1961)

Hand in Hand poster

Associated British Picture Corporation (ABPC)
Starring:
 Loretta Parry, Philip Needs
Directed by: Philip Leacock

Synopsis: Rachel Mathias (Loretta Parry) and Michael O’Malley (Philip Needs) are childhood friends in England who grow attached to each other despite their different religions.

Kitty Cameo: Michael’s family owns a Tortoiseshell cat named Sam. One day when Rachel is over she spots Sam who has come into the room.

Hand in Hand - tortoiseshell cat Sam walking into room

Rachel picks up Sam and sits down with him on her lap. She pets him as Michael moves to the end of the couch to join her.

Hand in Hand - Rachel Loretta Parry sitting with tortoiseshell cat Sam on lap and Michael Philip Needs

Michael comments on how Sam usually doesn’t like people but likes Rachel.

Hand in Hand - Rachel Loretta Parry  and Michael Philip Needs petting tortoiseshell cat Sam

She sings the verse about the pussycat going to see the Queen which gives the children an idea for their next adventure.

Hand in Hand - Rachel Loretta Parry  and Michael Philip Needs with tortoiseshell cat Sam

Hand in Hand - Rachel Loretta Parry holding tortoiseshell cat Sam with Michael Philip Needs

Final Mewsings: Cats like gentle and thoughtful children.


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