The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan
The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan, a cartoon series produced by Hanna-Barbera in 1972, aired on Saturday mornings on CBS television. The series consisted of 16 half-hour episodes and featured Keye Luke, Charlie Chan’s Number One Son in the Twentieth Century-Fox film series, as the voice of Charlie Chan. The cartoons starred the Chinese detective who was assisted in his cases in a big way by his multitudinous clan of ten children, in order: Henry, Stanley, Suzie, Alan, Anne, Tom, Flip, Nancy, Mimi, and Scooter (plus their dog, a Pekingese named Chu-Chu). This followed, in an expanded way, the established Charlie Chan movie formula of featuring one or more offspring, which fit in well with the Hanna-Barbera convention of that time of having kids often stumbling their way through the process of successfully solving mysteries and providing comedic moments along the way. In another Hanna-Barbera cartoon norm of the time, a number of Chan’s offspring comprised a band called The Chan Clan. The family also had a “Chan Van,” created by mechanical whiz, Alan, which could, with the press of a button, transform into another type of vehicle, following Hanna-Barbera’s common use of mechanized gimmickry prevalent in many of their cartoons. Other Hanna-Barbera traits abound such as the usual sound effects, laughter track, and visual gags.
Besides the already noted actor, Keye Luke, many of the other actors who provided voices for characters in The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan continued careers in acting, most notably Jody Foster who provided the voice of Anne Chan. When originally produced, the series’ characters featured voices provided by actors of Asian descent. However, it was later decided to recast nearly all voices as it was felt that the thicker accents of the characters would prove to be confusing to younger viewers. It is also interesting to note that the name “Henry” for Charlie Chan’s Number One Son was carried over from the original Chan stories by Earl Derr Biggers. Also, as was the case in the later phase of the Charlie Chan film series, there was no mention of a Mrs. Chan.
The Amazing Chan…
…and the Chan Clan
Listed below are all 16 episodes of The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan. Titles are in the form of links that lead to information for each episode.
Episode 1: The Crown Jewel Caper
At the City Museum, priceless Burmese crown jewels are protected by high-tech security. However, in what appears to be an inside job, the jewels are taken under the noses of everyone present, including the Chans who jump into action and pursue the thieves.
Episode 2: To Catch a Pitcher
Following a World Series game, the Chan boys seek the autograph of star player Boo Blew. However, they witness Blew’s kidnapping which sends the Chan Clan and their famous Pop into action.
Episode 3: Will the Real Charlie Chan Please Stand Up?
While on vacation with his family in Hawaii, Charlie Chan is accused of stealing jewelry from their hotel. Chan’s kids assist the detective in proving his innocence as it becomes apparent that someone is impersonating their Pop while pulling off a series of thefts.
Episode 4: The Phantom Sea Thief
Charlie Chan and all his kids are on a relaxing ocean cruise. Mrs. Van Norton, a millionaire, is transporting her favorite painting which is worth a million dollars. Charlie Chan suggests that she put the painting in the ship’s vault, but she declines. While everyone is watching the Chan Clan band perform, the painting disappears. The painting must be recovered before the ship reaches port!
Episode 5: Eye of the Idol
A wealthy man from India has just arrived by ship with an idol containing a valuable jewel, The Eye of the Idol. When a distraction results in the jewel being removed from the idol and stolen, Charlie Chan and the Chan Clan snap into action, sifting through a number of suspects.
Episode 6: The Fat Lady Caper
As the Chan family visits the Zambini Circus, its owner, Mr. Zambini, informs Charlie Chan that someone is out to ruin his circus. When Dimples the fat lady is stolen, Chan and the kids, suspecting an inside job, seek to find the missing star performer and solve the case.
Episode 7: Captain Kidd’s Doubloons
Charlie Chan and the kids are on vacation in Trinidad. During a Buccaneer Days celebration, a prized exhibit, the Captain Kidd doubloons, is stolen, which brings Chan and his family into action.
Episode 8: The Bronze Idol
Arriving at a South Seas island on a small, private vessel, Charlie Chan and his family learn from the tribal leader that the Great One, in the form of a large bronze idol, is threatening the inhabitants with destruction if they do not continue to make offerings of valuable pearls to him. Realizing that there is much more to the story, Chan and the kids search for the answers.
Episode 9: Double Trouble
An Arab prince, Prince Harim, is due to sign extremely important documents for his country the next day, so he is under strict security precautions, even though he is taking part in an automobile race. However, during the race he is switched for a look-alike, and, later, when the double himself disappears, the Chans join in on the hunt for the missing prince.
Episode 10: The Great Illusion Caper
Charlie Chan is brought in to investigate Hamid Bey, a jewel thief, who is hiding among the performers of a magic show. Once involved, Chan and his family find themselves involved in the disappearance of the show’s star performer, a dog named FiFi.
Episode 11: The Mummy’s Tomb
While visiting an archeological dig in Egypt, the Chans search for the missing golden mummy of an ancient pharaoh, facing a curse in order to solve the theft.
Episode 12: The Mardi Gras Caper
In New Orleans, Charlie Chan and his family investigate the theft of a valuable ring that once belonged to Marie Antoinette.
Episode 13: The Gypsy Caper
Charlie Chan and the family step in when the mayor of an Alpine town accuses a band of Gypsies of stealing a valuable icon.
Episode 14: The Greek Caper
Charlie Chan and the Chan Clan step in to find the statue of the Winged Venus of Athens that has been mysteriously stolen, replaced by a plaster copy.
Episode 15: The White Elephant
Sing Ha, an elephant belonging to an Indian Majaraja, is apparently stolen, and Charlie Chan and the Chan Clan are on the case to recover the missing animal.
Episode 16: The Chan Clan at Scotland Yard
When the Stone of Scones, a priceless artifact, is stolen from Westminster Abbey, Charlie Chan and the Chan Clan take on the job of getting it back.