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Puppet Robots

Major Domo - Outer space robot on the puppet satire program JOHNNY JUPITER/DUM/ABC/1953-54.

Major Domo, Chief of the robots - JOHNNY JUPITER
Major Domo

Major Domo was the chief of the Robots on the planet Jupiter. He interacted with a Jovian alien named Johnny Jupiter who received interplanetary TV transmissions from earthling E.P. Duckweather (Wright King), a janitor of a T.V. Station (later a general store clerk).

1954 Opening: "This is the story of Ernest P. Duckweather who invented the strangest television set in the world. On this set he could look through endless space, 600 million miles away to the far off planet Jupiter. In a Jupiterian television station he found three friends: Johnny Jupiter, a human (more or less); Major Domo, chief of the robots; and Reject, the factory rejected robot who was able to appear and disappear at will. Soon Duckweather found he could turn to the Jupiterians for help whenever he was in trouble. But alas, no one believed the young inventor, not even when his friends sent Reject the Robot to the planet Earth."

Johnny, Reject & Duckweather

Reject the Robot, a factory rejected robot from the Planet Jupiter, was the dutiful companion of Johnny Jupiter whom Johnny often sent to earth to aid Duckweather. Reject could appear and disappear at will. 

When Johnny Jupiter needed to send an emissary to Earth, he touched Reject the Robot, and said "Super Jelly Bean Power." Arriving on earth, Reject could only be seen by Mr. Duckweather. Rejects favorite TV show is "The Robot Club."

In later episodes, Reject the Robot appeared human-sized. Inside the clunky robot suit was a young puppeteer named Gene London who would later have his own popular TV series in Philadelphia entitled CARTOON CORNERS.

Examples of Reject the Robot interacting with Duckweather include:

  • Episode 3: September 19, 1953 "Buried Treasure" Duckweather and  Reject the Robot search for buried treasure.
  • Episode 5: September 3, 1953 "Masquerade Party" Reject the Robot and Mr. Duckweather attend a masquerade party.
  • Episode 23: February 6, 1954 "The Genius" Reject the Robot answers  the questions to Duckweathers correspondence exam which makes Mr. Frisby think that Duckweather is a genius.
  • Episode 32: April 10, 1954 "The Geiger Counter" Reject the Robot body sets off a geiger counter and convinces Mr. Frisby there is a deposit of Uranium under his store.
  • Episode 34: April 24, 1954, "The Penny Arcade" Duckweather takes Reject the Robot to the penny arcade where the robot falls in love with a wax dummy.
  • Episode 38: May 22, 1954, "Reject's Defect" Duckweather discovers that Reject the Robot's evil twin brother has come to earth.

Jerry Coopersmith (the series writer)  and Gilbert Mach provided the voices for the show.  The hand puppets were animated by Carl Harms and Philip (Gene) London.

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