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Kiko-1-

Kiko the Kangaroo was one of Terrytoons' earliest stars.

Characteristically, Terrytoons came up with Kiko after there was already another cartoon kangaroo to "inspire" him. Disney's Mickey's Kangaroo, which had come out on April 13, 1935, concerned the protagonist being unexpectedly gifted with a pet kangaroo, from a friend in Australia, and the antics that ensued from that. Terry's Kiko the Kangaroo (aka Farmer Al Falfa's Prize Package), released on July 31, 1936, was also about the protagonist unexpectedly being given a kangaroo, only the protagonist was good old Farmer Al Falfa, and the gift giver was his brother Hank, whom the viewers had never heard of before.

Not surprisingly, Kiko turned out to be fun-loving and mischievous. He wasn't exactly a blockbuster hit, but he was well enough received to star in another cartoon, Kiko & the Honey Bears, a few weeks later, and another, Kiko Foils a Fox, after that. Altogether, ten Kiko cartoons were made, ending with Kiko's Cleaning Day, released on September 17, 1937. One of them, Ozzy Ostrich Comes to Town, introduced another proposed series character, but that one went nowhere.

Decades later, in an interview, Bill Hanna, one of the two founders of Hanna Barbera, referred to a proposed 11th Kiko cartoon. He'd storyboarded it early in his career, when he worked briefly at a succession of studios, including Terrytoons, before settling down at MGM, where he co-created Tom & Jerry. But Terry rejected the story, and that was the end of Kiko the Kangaroo.

Kiko was long gone by the time Marvel Comics became the first to license the Terrytoons characters for that medium, and thus never was adapted into anything outside of cartoons. He was part of the Terrytoons cartoon package that appeared on early television, but when television switched to color, Kiko, who had appeared only in black and white, was left behind.

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