Search on Google today and you’ll see this tribute to “the man from the moon”, Mr Squiggle.
Artist,cartoonist and puppeteer Norman Hetherington was born in Sydney’s inner-west on May 29 in 1921. He created one of Australia’s greatest children’s TV shows, Mr Squiggle, which became the ABC’s third longest running kid’s show, behind Playschool and Behind the News.
It’s Australia’s fifth longest running show, spanning four decades between 1959 and 1999.
Mr Squiggle was a marionette with a pencil for a nose, who lived on the moon, but flew down to earth to draw pictures from squiggles child viewers sent in. The drawings sat on a grumpy easel called Blackboard, another marionette that always told him to hurry up, while his friend Bill the Steam Shovel told corny jokes. Mr Squiggle had a series of female assistants, including Hetherington’s daughter, Rebecca, as well as “Miss Pat”, actress and film producer Patricia Lovell, who died last year.
Hetherington was Mr Squiggle’s voice and puppeteer. The pictures were often drawn “upside down” because that was Hetherington’s perspective
Mr Squiggle was the Peppa Pig of its time, back in the days before kids could watch the show on smartphones and iView.
Norman Hetherington died, aged 89, in 2010.
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