It recently dawned on me that I've never known who provided Gadget's distinctive voice. To be honest, as kids, we couldn't give a rats. But as an adult these are the questions that keep me awake at night. I couldn't believe what Google was telling me! Inspector Gadget was... <Spoiler Alert> ... DON ADAMS! Aka Maxwell Smart! Who knew!? Probably lots of people. But not me. And now I know. Aint that something?
Gadget's niece, Penny, could give NASA a run for their money with the technology she got around with. And it's a good thing Gadget had her around too; if he was left to his own devices (haha, Gadget pun) he'd have been in all sorts of trouble. But I think we all knew who the real hero was though. Penny's trusty dog, Brain. Who's a good boy then?
Of course, being a cat person since I was knee high to a grasshopper, Dr Claw's cat M.A.D. was totally my favourite, even though technically he was a baddie. Meh, you win some; you lose some.
Inspector Gadget inspired a plethora (I just don't get to use that word as much as I'd like) of merchandise. Board games, hand held games, figurines with detachable
choking hazards parts, even a mini pinball game. He was one popular dude, and as kids we lapped it allll up.
There was even a mad Inspector Gadget Commodore 64 game!
But there was one Inspector Gadget toy that surpassed all of the other Inspector Gadget toys... Gather 'round kids, cause this big kid is about to blow your fragile little minds...
The Inspector Gadget Action Figure
This Go Go Gadget toy had everything! Things that attached to his hat, like: his helicopter, his hammer, an umbrella, and an extra arm/hand. One of his arms extended out to twice it's original length; the other arm had a hand that projectile shot right out of its socket. His neck extended; his legs extended. And he came with handcuffs & his signature trench-coat - which on their own would make Gadget quite a shady character that you probably wouldn't want your kids playing with. But luckily he came with all of his gadgets & he was the coolest toy around.
Looking back, my folks were incredibly on point with Christmas & Birthday toys! And this Inspector Gadget action figure was no exception.
There's been a whole heap of Inspector Gadget spinoffs, reboots, and a movie with Matthew Broderick starring as Gadget. But those of us who tuned in every weekday through the mid '80s know that the original is definitely the best. Lucky for us there's a YouTube channel with hours & hours of full episodes to watch all over again. Huzzah!
And to my knowledge, Dr Claw STILL hasn't got Gadget... 'next time' maybe?