Comedians pick their favourite fictional cats and dogs
- Brian Donaldson
- 27 November 2019
From Top Cat to Jake the Dog, a line-up of funny people reminisce about their favourite furry friend in support of Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home
With The Stand set to host a benefit evening for the Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home, we thought we'd ask some of the acts taking part to name their favourite fictional pooch and moggy.
My favourite cartoon dog and cat are Snoopy and Garfield. I love how sarcastic and dismissive they both are of their owners. I identify quite closely with Snoopy as he always has these massive fantastic plans that never quite work out. I loved him so much that in my 20s I got myself my own beagle who was loveable, loyal, a pain in the arse and similarly dismissive of his (really quite nice) owner.
Actually I've never noticed that both the cartoon animals I love have a healthy disrespect of authority. Garfield and I share a love of lasagne, laziness and snarky sarcasm. I'm also not keen on Mondays and love coffee. I may well be Garfield in human form.
My favourite cartoon dog has to be Jake the Dog from Adventure Time: one of the greatest modern cartoons has one of the best cartoon dogs. A good dog should be loyal, brave, loving and able to change his shape-like liquid to fit the job at hand and Jake fits every bit of that criteria.
I've had both cats and dogs growing up: my cat decided to leave and live with the neighbours when he was 18. That's most parents dream, but I was a bit miffed to be honest. For that reason I'd say I'm more of a dog person. As such, my favourite cat would have to be Cat from the Nickelodeon cartoon CatDog, and that's mostly because he's 50% dog.
Mr Tinkles from the film Cats & Dogs is the classic Bond villain cat who has moved up from evil cat sidekick to the main antagonist. Mr Tinkles is an evil genius. I suspect my own cats are busy being evil geniuses when I'm not at home. My favourite quote from the film is: 'Make them quake at the mention of my name' while maid the shouts 'Mr Tinkles!' in a sing song voice. Makes me laugh every time.
When I was a kid, my sister had severe asthma so we weren't allowed a cat or dog. Every Saturday morning I watched Champion the Wonder Horse about a boy called Ricky, his horse, and a dog called Rebel. After the programme finished, I'd ride around on my imaginary horse and Rebel the German Shepherd would accompany me on my adventures. Happy days before games consoles.
In my formative years I used to enjoy reading Snoopy. The Observer used to come into our house every Sunday and it was the only cartoon strip I could understand. There was a definite tone, an undercurrent of sadness, in Peanuts. I think the dog I maybe like best of all is Spike from Tom and Jerry. From the good old Tom and Jerry: he was a hard-done-by canine, and that was my favourite cartoon as a child. If I had to choose a cat it's Top Cat: I liked his style.
My all-time favourite fictional dog is Wishbone, a wee Jack Russell who was on Channel 5 when I was growing up. He had his own TV show which had a VERY catchy theme tune (I'd recommend having a Google). He travelled back to the past and had starring roles in great pieces of literature such as Romeo and Juliet and The Time Machine (renamed Bark to the Future, obviously). He also had a variety of outfits to fit each occasion, including hats and sometimes shoes. There are episodes on YouTube and I promise you won't regret it.
My favourite cat was Oliver from the 1988 Disney classic Oliver & Company, which also had a belter of a theme tune. He was a wee ginger cat who got left out in the rain after all his pals were adopted. If I remember correctly he meets a stray dog who teaches him how to steal food and then he meets a wee girl who is very wealthy and wants to adopt him: he has to choose between his friends and a comfortable life. Looking at it now it all seems a bit heavy. And very discriminatory against redheads.
My favourite dog is Poochie from The Simpsons (season 8, episode 14). Homer's addition to the Itchy & Scratchy-verse is hated on impact. The rapping, basketball-playing, guitar-soloing dog is killed off before we really get to know him. As someone who has spent years watching terrible new comedians blossom into not-that-bad comedians, I can empathise with his plight. Plus he shouts 'remember to recycle kids … to the EXTREME!' This was 22 years ago. Poochie has a better climate policy than most political parties.
My favourite cat is the one from the Coronation Street credits. I am, at heart, a lazy man. When I see that cat walk along a wooden gate, I think: 'what a life'. That cat has burrowed its way into the national consciousnesses without doing anything other than balance for a bit. Truly, the dream. I've asked my agent if I can audition for the new series.
I loved Top Cat, that sassy cop-annoying cat and his adventures. I was addicted to the cartoon and drove everyone mad with constantly drawing him on the walls of my house with a big pen. But my favourite cat was from The Cat in the Hat, the first book I ever learned to read. It was nothing like our cat Biff who was covered in fleas and fought all the dogs in our street and would sit with my mum in her local pub stealing sips of beer. Deputy Dawg was my favourite dog growing up: I could do all the voices.
Benefit in Aid of Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home, The Stand, Edinburgh, Tuesday 3 December.