Inch High Private Eye is a somewhat lesser known product of Hanna-Barbera Productions. The animated series originally ran on Saturday mornings in 1973-74 for just a single season. The title character was literally a one inch tall private investigator. Though apparently not popular enough to warrant a standard DVD release, the show has developed enough of a cult following over the years that Warner Archive has released all 13 episodes as a two DVD-R set.
The episodes follow a formula that involves Inch High, the “world’s biggest little detective,” being assigned a new case by his employer, The Finkerton Detective Agency. Inch High works cases with his team of assistants–primarily his niece Lori and Braveheart the dog (both full-sized). It’s never really addressed why Inch High is of such short stature, the show just capitalizes on the gimmick with lots of sight gags. Inch High’s boss, Mr. Finkerton, is a typically cantankerous type who always seems to be butting heads with his star employee.
Inch High was voiced by the late Lennie Weinrib, perhaps better known as the voice of H.R. Pufnstuf and other characters from Sid and Marty Krofft’s productions. Weinrib had a ton of voice credits, including numerous characters from Scooby-Doo as well as the late-‘70s The New Adventures of Batman. Hanna-Barbera regular Kathy Gori voiced Lori. The legendary Don Messick, who voiced Scooby-Doo from that character’s debut in 1969 right up until Messick’s death in 1997, provided the voice of Braveheart.
For ‘70s nostalgia buffs, Inch High Private Eye will likely be a desirable release to acquire. Though not accompanied by any extra features, the DVD-R presents relatively strong transfers of each episode. Despite being nearly 40 years old, the picture is sharp, the colors are strong, and the audio is serviceably clear. The only annoying flaws are the speckles that pop up fairly frequently, but Warner can hardly have been expected to treat this cult show to a full restoration. The manufactured-on-demand DVD-R set can be purchased directly through the official online store of Warner Bros. Studios.