Joe Harris, Co-Creator of Underdog, Has Passed Away
The illustrator and cartoonist was 89 years oldApril 6, 2017
Fans of animation will be saddened to learn Underdog co-creator and animator Joe Harris passed away last month at age 89 at this home in Stamford, Conn., according to an Instagram post published recently by his daughter Merrie (below).
Good bye to my dad. I will always remember you creating: cartoons and ads, writing books, drawing, painting and even carving crazy totem poles. May heaven be a big studio. You will be missed.
A post shared by Merrie Harris (@merrieharris) on
The advertising illustrator, who also created the iconic Trix Rabbit, was part of the team—along with Chet Stover, W. Watts Biggers, and Treadwell Covington—who created Total TeleVision, which churned out fondly-remembered Saturday morning cartoon characters like Tennessee Tuxedo (mentioned on Monday during Howard’s interview with Hank Azaria), King Leonardo, Biggie Rat, Tooter Turtle and Mr. Wizard. Of course, the team’s 1964 creation of Underdog remains their most enduring. Harris animated for “The Underdog Show” and is credited with co-writing the famous theme song.
The news will no doubt be upsetting to Underdog Lady, who has dedicated her life to spreading the good word of the caped canine. Here’s Underdog Lady comparing Underdog to other, more mainstream superheroes, and check out her conversation with Shuli Egar, blaming Batman for Underdog’s lack of popularity (below).
Read more about the life and career of Joe Harris here.