Lidsville was this really campy, corny and hokey (but still fun to watch) 70’s live action kids show produced by Sid and Marty Krofft. It starred Charles Nelson Reilly, Butch Patrick (yes, Eddie Munster from the 60s sitcom The Munters) and Billie Hayes. Mark (Patrick) was at an amusement park one day and took in the act of Merlo, the Magician (Reilly). So amazed at the tricks the magician did, Mark decided to sneak backstage after the magic show to examine the magician’s hat. When he picked it up, it began to grow in size, till finally he was able to crawl onto the brim and look down into it. Then it shook and rocked and he fell into it and landed in Lidsville, the land of living hats.
This land was ruled by an evil wizard name Horatio J. HooDoo who had green skin, bright red hair and beard and was able to fly around the land on his over size hat called a hatamaran zapping all the good hats. He had kept Weenie the Genie (Hayes) prisoner until Mark was able to set him/her free. The series lasted for two seasons, with 17 episodes to its credit and I seem to recall that they never did figure out a way to get Mark back home, so he has been stuck in the land of the living hats all these years.
The series has been released onto DVD some time ago, and is out of print, so be prepared to spend some serious money to get your hands on a copy, as the last time I checked Amazon, the sellers there wanted over $100 for the set and EBay wasn’t looking much better!
The Lidsville Comic Book Series
Of course, as with a lot of cartoons and kids shows of that decade, there was a comic book series as well. Published by Gold Key, with five issues to its credit:
#1 October 1972: World in a Hat and The Plaid Hatter’s Tea Party
#2 January 1973: Mommy Hoo Doo and Pen Pal Plot
#3 April 1973: The Crabby Crabgrass and The Calico Conspiracy
#4 July 1973: The Giant Hat-erpillar and Bunsmoke
#5 October 1973: Sir Rip Van Helmet and The Red Hooded Hatpeckers
As a side note: At least three of the issues (1, 3 and 5) and maybe even all of them were also released under the Whitman name and all of them used the same cover art and had the same stories. I am not sure of the reasoning behind this, maybe some out there has a the answer and will share?
© 2016 Glory Miller/Graple is Starstruck