September 9, 1968: Hector’s House first broadcast on BBC1

Hector’s House (1965-1970)

Hector’s House is a children’s television series using hand puppets. Like the better-known The Magic Roundabout it was a French production revoiced for a British audience. A gentle series, it was first broadcast in 1965. Its French title was La Maison de Toutou written by Georges Croses. La Maison de Toutou translates as “The House of the Doggie” and in the French version, Hector is known as Toutou and Zsazsa is known as ZouZou. In the United Kingdom, it was first shown on the September 9, 1968 and the series of 78 episodes continued as a repeat cycle until September 12, 1975 for its 5-minute-long screenings on BBC 1 at 5:40 p.m. before the News.

The main characters, affable Hector the Dog (voiced by Paul Bacon) and cute Zsazsa the Cat (Lucie Dolène), live in a house and beautiful garden. Kiki the Frog (Denise Bryer), dressed in a pink smock, is a constant and at times an intrusive visitor, through her hole in the wall. Despite Hector’s willingness to endlessly help them out, Kiki and Zsazsa often played tricks on him to teach him a lesson, leading him to say his catchphrase at the end of the episode, “I’m a Great Big [whatever he was] Old Hector.”

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