Parents' Guide to

The Mr. Magoo Show

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Vintage cartoon is rife with ethnic stereotypes.

The Mr. Magoo Show Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

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Is It Any Good?

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Whatever charm The Mr. Magoo Show still holds is due to the wonderful voice work of Jim Backus. He's just as funny muttering to himself in cartoon form as he was on Gilligan's Island. The animated hijinks he gets himself into are also funny, in a way that will be appreciated by very young children: Mr. Magoo mistakes a salad for a bag of money and tries to deposit it in the bank, which is actually a horse-betting track! Ha! Since children just love to watch adults making mistakes, this is high-octane stuff.

However, parents won't find the Magoo universe as easy to take as kids might. One of the show's main characters is a Chinese "houseboy" with buck teeth and a pigtail. His original voice, a stereotyped "Chinese" accent has been dubbed over; the new voice is charmless, but more PC; still, his image is shockingly racist. In another episode, a Mexican man in a giant sombrero and moustache yells "Enchilada! Taco!" as epithets. Ay ay ay, maybe this stuff flew in the 1960s, but it's awful to watch now.

TV Details

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