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Manimal

By Wikipedia Manimal was a 1980s sci-fi television series about a shape-shifting man who could turn himself into any animal at will, starring Simon McCorkindale.

The opening words from the narrator, William Conrad:

"Dr. Jonathan Chase - wealthy, young, handsome. A man with the brightest of futures. A man with the darkest of pasts. From Africa's deepest recesses, to the rarest peaks of Tibet. Heir to his father's legacy and the worlds darkest mysteries...Jonathan Chase, master of the secrets that divide man from animal, animal from man, Manimal."

Overview

By modern standards its special effects are relatively low-quality, not surprising given the time period and other constraints. Though Dr. Chase was meant to have the ability to change himself into any animal, in practice his onscreen transformations were almost always into a hawk or black panther, presumably to save on the budget.

The show was cancelled after only eight episodes. In the years since, its name is often invoked by science fiction fans when asked to name the worst series ever made for television. (Which is not to say that it has no fans at all.)

Cast

Simon MacCorkindale as Jonathan Chase
Melody Anderson, Brooke Mackenzie
Michael D. Roberts, Tyrone 'Ty' C. Earl
Reni Santoni, Lt. Nick Rivera
William Conrad, Narrator

 

Share Your Memories!

Do you have a favorite episode of Manimal? What do you remember about the series? Share your stories with the world! (We print the best stories right here!)

Your Memories Shared!

"This was the first TV show I EVER watched. I was a 5 years old girl who loved animals, and I was amazed by JC's powers of turning into any animal he wanted. I loved it especially when he transformed himself into a black panther, and I was a bit scared by the "morphing" sequences. I had my mom tape a couple of episodes, and sometimes I still watch them. It's a very "Awesome80s" TV show, and kind of lame at some points, but on the other hand it had an original premise, and a cute leading actor."

--ALittaM

"The thing I rember most was how Simon's hand turned into the talons of a hawk. The talons are a birds feet. I was 12 and felt insulted by it."

--Anonymous

"Best part was the transformation FX, where Jonathan Chase turned into a panther, hawk, and on one occasion, a snake. The snake transformation was the one that has stuck in my mind since."

--Dan

"All i remember from when i was very young (5) is that this show was all about a guy who could change into different animals! When he started to change bubbles would appear under his skin.. then there were some flashes, lights and he would be the animal i.e eagle, monkey etc! I used to watch it religiously round my friends house because they could get it on there TV and I could not watch it at home. The theme tune sticks out in my mind as well... i remember it being rather odd!"

--Youngs!

 

TV TIDBITS

Aired: September 30, 1983 - December 31, 1983

Cast: Simon MacCorkindale, Melody Anderson, Michael D. Roberts

Network: NBC

Genre: Police Drama

Theme song

Image courtesy of NBC


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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from this Wikipedia article, which is probably more up to date than ours (retrieved August 12, 2005).

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