When Penelope Pitstop made her debut on Wacky Races in 1968, it was clear she was destined for stardom. Therefore, no one was surprised when she was given her own spin-off in 1969. In The Perils of Penelope Pitstop the young lady was, once again, involved in a road race aboard her Compact Pussycat.
The twist to the plot was that Penelope was an heiress, whose vast fortune would go to her lawyer if anything ever happened to her (presumably, the lady had no next of kin). Her lawyer, Sylvester Sneekly, decided to follow his lawyerly instincts by spending every episode trying to do away with Penelope so that the fortune would be his. Disguising himself and using the pseudonym "The Hooded Claw," Sneekly launched a variety of assaults on the heroine. Of course, the Fates always seemed to be smiling on Miss Pitstop, and she always managed to escape harm, usually by inadvertently turning the tables on Sneekly so that he would become the victim of his own bad deeds.
Assisting Penelope whenever they could was the Ant Hill Mob. Previously seen on Wacky Races as well, the Mob was a collection of pint-sized gangsters, each of whom had a distinct persona. Clyde, the leader, sounded just like Humphrey Bogart. Softy always found something to cry about. Yak Yak could barely control his laughter. Pockets was always prepared. Zippy was quick on his feet. Dum Dum was not very smart, and Snoozy was the mob's narcoleptic driver. Even though they were entered in the race as well, they couldn't resist coming to the aid of the beautiful Penelope.
Sneekly had his own henchmen, of course- the Bully Brothers, two twins who spoke in unison, most likely because they shared a brain. With only half a brain each, the brothers actually did very little to assist Sneekly and most often ended up being a hindrance.
The series was modeled after the silent films of the 1920's, specifically The Perils of Pauline, and was narrated by Gary Owens, who managed to add a generous portion of mock drama to the cartoon.
Veteran actor Paul Lynde performed the voice of Sneekly but went uncredited. One can only assume Lynde was worried that his Hollywood Squares associates would find out and make fun of him, which is understandable, considering how nasty George Gobel could get.
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