Saturday, May 28, 2011

South Pacific Sunday! Two Fisted Tales On Television! Tales Of The Gold Monkey!

Turn your wayback dial on your television for a moment to 1982 on ABC & there were more then a few quality shows that brought my family running! Indy had come the year before & suddenly television excutives had pulp on the brain. Tales Of The Gold Monkey's promo flashed up on the screen & made my young heart stop. Here was everything that was needed for a fragile mind!
Pulp Action!
Characters with shady connections!
The plot goes something like this: 1938, somewhere in the South Pacific. High above the clouds, ex-Flying Tiger airman-turned-adventurer Jake Cutter (Stephen Collins), cigar stump firmly clenched in his teeth, pilots his rickety Grumman Goose amphibious seaplane--dubbed Cutter's Goose--over the tiny islands of the Marivellas chain, looking to land at his home base: Boragora Island. Jake's constant co-pilot, Jack, a one-eyed terrier who understands English, isn't found of take-offs and landings, so he usually can be found curled up on a cushion in the back cargo hold, balefully glaring at Jake with his one good eye. Skimming the water and docking the Goose at the small harbor, Jake invariably makes his way to the Monkey Bar, a fabulous watering hole of bamboo and carved mahogany, owned by Boragora's French Magistrate, 'Bon Chance' Louie (Roddy McDowall), a seen-it-all cosmopolitan plunked down in the middle of this primitive island paradise. As regular a fixture at the Monkey as the carved primates that decorate the place, drunken, forgetful mechanic and Jake's best friend, Corky (Jeff MacKay), will no doubt be propping up the bar when Jake busts in. Over by the piano, scrapper Sarah Stickney White (Caitlin O'Heaney) supposedly stranded on Boragora and singing for her supper at the Monkey, is in actuality an espionage agent working for the American government. She's a pretty little thing, and she has it bad for Jake (likewise for the pilot), but she's loathe to admit she likes the charming rogue. Also keeping an eye on the comings and goings of the active Japanese military in the area is good-natured, bumbling German Nazi agent Willy (John Calvin), who, like Sarah, has adopted a cover for his covert activities: he's posing as Reverend Willie Tenboom, a Dutch missionary who "blesses" all the pretty, naïve native girls. Not so bumbling--in fact, quite cunning and deadly--is Jake's sometimes nemesis/sometimes ally, Koji (Marta DuBois), a beautiful, deadly (and let's face it: stacked) Japanese 'Dragon Lady' princess who runs Matuka Island with ruthless authority and who engages in all manner of illegal smuggling and trade.
The show lasted for 21 episodes & was canceled due to the high production costs. It made a very lasting impression on my young mind. It was light, breezy, & most of all fun! 
Might make a great adventure outing for Call of Cthulhu or your favorite pulp rpg. 
Resources include: 
Fan site
Wiki entry


  1. TotGM was a great show--at least for its era. I'd love to see a higher budget remake.

  2. What a great show! Remembering that put a smile on my face! Thanks

  3. I'm going to try to cover a number of shows each Sunday guys. This was my acid test to see how this came off today!
    Trey -I totally agree!
    Bill - You are very very welcome.
    Thanks guys for the feed back. If I run out of television shows then I'll switch over to classic movies.


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