Friday, December 31, 2010


In Ohio, our backyard was a Winter Wonderland. Here, The Mother Kitty braves the wind and checks things out. (I have a feeling she won't be out for long!) 

Winter (December 24, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: December 24, 2010)

Happy New Year, everyone!

Monday, December 20, 2010


He puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore. Then Norman thought of something he hadn't before! Maybe Christmas, he thought, doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas... perhaps... means a little bit more!

And what happened then? Well, they say that Norman's small heart grew three sizes that day! And then, the true meaning of Christmas came through, and Norman found the strength of 10 Normans--plus two!

Mail (December 17, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: December 17, 2010)

I'm off to spend Christmas with my family in Ohio. (Maybe we'll get to watch my favorite Christmas cartoon, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!)

©1966 Chuck Jones/Time Warner
Max, The Grinch, and little Cindy Lou Who
Happy holidays, everyone!

Saturday, December 18, 2010


I was stuck on Illustration Friday's topic last week, but I think it was due to my mid-week deadline to create a Christmas postcard for Johnny Depp. As soon as I was done with that all-consuming task, The Kitties oldest phenomenon popped into my head: The inability of all kitties to ignore The Ribbon.

Phenomenon (December 10, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: December 10, 2010)

Am I right?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Merry Christmas, Johnny!

As I mentioned last month, Johnny's Angels--Depp Fans for Charity, a fan-run website that offers Johnny's fans a meaningful way to honor his charitable efforts, is running a holiday fundraiser benefiting Children's Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition. Johnny's Angels offered supporters the amazing opportunity to send a Christmas postcard to Johnny himself! Due December 15, who knew I'd obsess down to the wire over this little postcard?! 

Well, I guess that's not surprising. I hope he likes it! 

Here it is--minus my private little note to Johnny, of course. What do you think?

Johnny's Christmas Postcard 2010

Although the postcard submission deadline has passed, the Johnny's Angels holiday fundraiser continues through December 31. Supporting this wonderful cause will make these kids holiday season extra special! Read more about it here and donate today. The children and their families will thank you!  

Happy holidays, everyone!

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Johnny Kitties: Celebrating Johnny Depp--21 Jump Street (Season 3)

What is Johnny Kitties? See Johnny Kitties: Celebrating Johnny Depp for all the details. 

A little older and wiser...
Things changed in Season 3 of 21 Jump Street. Everyone seemed older. They all grew out their hair (except for Holly Robinson, who cut all of hers off). Peter Deluise’s Penhall stopped acting like the class clown, got a new job over the summer as an intelligence officer, grew a beard, and looked like a mountain man for the first few episodes. In his place, a new officer, Dennis Booker (Richard Grieco), was introduced as Hanson’s partner.  

No contest.
I never liked Dennis Booker. I admit, it was an instantaneous, irrational reaction. Fox advertised their new co-star with pulsating flashes of competing last names: DEPP! GRIECO! DEPP! GRIECO! DEPP! GRIECO! The in-your-face repetitive ads were shown so often that Saturday Night Live even made fun of them. I found them irritating for other reasons: Who is this guy? How dare he even try to be as cool as Johnny?! How do they compare?! 

For Johnny Kitties, I decided to wipe the slate clean and give Booker another chance. Watching these episodes again now, I found that--to my surprise--Hanson couldn't stand Booker either! I have no memory of that being the case in the '80s, but Hanson’s lack of endorsement must have solidified my opinion of his new partner. Booker was a wiseguy; Hanson didn't trust him. At the end of his first episode, Booker takes him to a seedy bar for a beer. “I’ve got a question for you, Booker.” Hanson says. “Do you act like a creep because you really are a creep or it’s just fun to act like one?” He never gets a straight answer.

I learned recently that Richard Grieco was brought into the cast because of Johnny's increasing frustrations with the show. (Fascinating!) Johnny started refusing to participate in episodes that he felt didn't adequately cover topics or had story lines that he was against. Some cases Booker took on involved the killing of an innocent teen and hate crimes. Okay, the addition of Dennis Booker may have had a legitimate purpose, but I will never forgive him for getting Hanson arrested for murder by the end of the season. Thanks for ruining my summer!

Season 3 of 21 Jump Street continued to tackle such subjects as racism, gangs, and drug use. But many of the episodes delved into the personal lives of the main characters. Aside from Hanson's little legal problem, Penhall struggles with his new job, Blowfish cheats on his wife, Hoffs becomes a victim of sexual harassment, and Ioki is shot while undercover. 

This season's guest stars included Dom and Michael Deluise, Bridget Fonda, Peri Gilpin, Kelly Hu, Christopher Titus, and Russell Wong.  

Here, The Kitties share the highlights from 21 Jump Street, Season 3

  • Episode 36. Fun with Animals: The first episode of the season reveals a noticeably aged cast. Maybe the stress of having Hanson's new partner Dennis Booker around caused this change.
  • Episode 37. Slippin' into Darkness: In this episode, Hoffs and Ioki join a gang of vigilantes dedicated to keeping the streets crime-free. Check out Ioki's cool moves here! This show also marks the first of many times that Captain Fuller gets in on the action. From now on, he becomes much more involved in all of the cases, checking in on his officers, making arrests, and generally helping to save the day.
  • Episode 38. The Currency We Trade In: Aside from an annoying new partner, Hanson also gets a new girlfriend this season. Jackie (Yvette Nipar) and Tom hate each other at first, but then they decided to go for it. Jackie, who works in the DA office, lasts for quite a few episodes, and I even started to like her. But then, she shared some private information from Tom with her co-workers. While her intensions were good, she gets Captain Fuller in trouble, and Tom can't forgive her for that. They break up.
  • Episode 41. Hell Week: This episode, in which Hanson and Ioki go undercover on a college campus to investigate a fraternity, is one I remember very clearly. During initiation into this fraternity, Hanson is forced to eat several raw eggs, drink excessively while climbing a ladder (and carrying the drunk guy who passed out before him), and slide into a pool--blindfolded with his hands and feet bound. He ends up saving someone from drowning after that. No wonder I never joined a sorority.
  • Episode 44. Swallowed Alive: In one of my favorites, Hanson is left undercover in juvenile lock-up and begins to question what good he's doing by sending teen offenders there. 
  • Episode 45. What About Love?: While Hoffs deals with the serious problem of an angry ex-boyfriend, the comic relief in this episode came from Penhall and Ioki. Recently kicked to the curb by his girlfriend Dorothy, Penhall has been crashing on Ioki's couch. A real odd couple, the arguments are on the rise. Undercover here to catch a flasher, Penhall asks for Ioki's forgiveness for his latest batch of messes.
  • Episode 46. Wooly Bullies: In another favorite episode, everyone recounts their worst case of school bullying. In fourth grade, little Tommy Hanson was tortured by the taller and meaner Maureen Moroney. Despite being rejected during dance practice, as pictured, he wins her over in the end. Did you ever doubt it?
  • Episode 51. High High: The best scene in this drug-related episode is the morning Hanson reports to work in a disheveled suit with his hair pointing in every direction, kind of like Beethoven after a rough night. His reasons remain a mystery.
  • Episode 52. Blinded by the Thousand Points of Light: This story follows a group of teenage runaways, one of whom goes missing. He meets an disturbing end. The good that came out of it is that his girlfriend--played by Bridget Fonda--decides to go back home. Here, she and Hoffs muse about the stars in her backyard.
  • Episode 54. Partners, Part 2: In an ongoing story, Booker wrongly arrests Hanson for murdering another police officer while investigating gang shootings--during one of which Ioki is critically injured. In his last episode for the season, Hanson is convicted and sent behind bars. Oh the horror!  
If you have a favorite episode from Season 3, please share! 

So, will Hanson ever get out of jail? Will Johnny ever get off this show? To find out, tune in next month for highlights from Season 4 of 21 Jump Street!

Tuesday, December 07, 2010


I finally watched Avatar this weekend, which--while not a prehistoric story--may have sparked The Mother Kitty's dream.  

Prehistoric (December 3, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: December 3, 2010)

I considered consulting with my 7-year-old nephew Liam about my drawing for this week's Illustration Friday topic. After all, he is full of encyclopedic expertise when it comes to dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals. In the end, though, I decided to make up my own creatures. Liam is through with dinosaurs and is probably busy casting Harry Potter's spells.

Thursday, December 02, 2010


Dad makes such good sandwiches that the rest of us always said he should open a shop. He hasn't done that yet, so only we get to enjoy his special talents for now. 

For Thanksgiving, Mom made a delicious dinner for about 16 people when there were really only 6 of us to feed. 

We had turkey, mashed potatoes with gravy, sweet potatoes, stuffing, turnip greens, shrimp covered in her own marinara sauce. The few things Mom didn't cook herself were the pumpkin pie with homemade whipped cream, cranberry sauce and Gram's cheese pie.

Taking the cue from Dad, Norman took a stab at creating his own sandwich with a little bit of everything that was leftover. 

Savour (November 26, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: November 26, 2010)

We're not yet sure how good this sandwich will be, but he'll probably eat it anyway. 

Can you hear Norman's pre-feast chant? Savour the sandwich...Savour the sandwich....

Monday, November 29, 2010


Sneaky (November 19, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: November 19, 2010)

This is Lily latest favorite game. She always goes for the sneak attack.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Johnny's Angels--Depp Fans for Charity

Hi everyone,

Johnny Kitties has made a connection! I'm pleased to link Melissa's Kitties to Johnny's Angels--Depp Fans for Charity, a fan-run website that offers Johnny Depp's fans a meaningful way to honor his charitable efforts. Specifically, Johnny's Angels provides fundraisers throughout the year to benefit Children's Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition, an organization that Johnny has supported for years. Founded in 2001, Children’s Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition aims to improve care for children with life-threatening diseases and their families though children's hospitals, hospices, home health and grassroots agencies, and individuals.

Johnny's Angels also helps to raise public awareness of the needs of these children and their families and to assist them in learning more about local children hospice options available to them. Don't miss the Johnny's Angels holiday fundraiser running through December 31. Make a donation and have your own holiday postcard sent to Johnny himself! Read about this exciting opportunity here.

Happy holidays!

Thursday, November 18, 2010


I had to think about this week's Illustration Friday topic for a few days. At the moment, I'm busy working on the Johnny Kitties' tribute to Cry-Baby, which is full of burning moments. Instead of focusing on Johnny Depp, however, I went to my other love, Sting. 

Working as an English teacher in Newcastle, Sting wrote a song called "I Burn for You" while his students took an exam. A few years later, he decided to move to London to follow his dream of becoming a full-time musician. You know how that turned out. 

"I Burn for You" ended up on the 1982 soundtrack of Brimstone & Treacle, a disturbing movie in which Sting stars. But I knew the song first from Sting's excellent 1986 documentary, Bring on the Night, which chronicles his first world tour as a solo artist. Supporting his first solo album, The Dream of the Blue Turtles, Sting was backed by a varied group of consummate jazz musicians, including saxophonist Branford Marsalis, pianist Kenny Kirkland, bassist Darryl Jones, and drummer Omar Hakim, among others. That band was the best.

Check it out! (Feel free to turn it up and bow down to Omar.)

(©A&M Records)

Granted, I didn't fall in love with Sting until 1987 when I bought my sister his latest effort, ...Nothing Like the Sun and then listened to it more than she did. But imagine me rummaging backwards in Sting's career and finding a performance like this. My hopeless devotion was inevitable! 

I listened to the Bring on the Night soundtrack quite often in those days. (Sting aside, it's one of the best concert albums ever!) Consequently, The Kitties became Sting fans too--whether they wanted to or not.

Honestly, I think their admiration is true. Back then, when The Mother Kitty was just known as The Kitty, she was very popular in our neighborhood. One time, I came home and found her in my room listening to this song full blast and eyeing one of her many boyfriends. How romantic! 

Burning (November 12, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: November 12, 2010)

Sunday, November 14, 2010


After a rainstorm, Simon's first order of business is to head outside and sniff out the mysterious changes.

Afterwards (November 5, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: November 5, 2010)

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Johnny Kitties: Celebrating Johnny Depp--21 Jump Street, Season 2

What is Johnny Kitties? See Johnny Kitties: Celebrating Johnny Depp for all the details. 

From Splice magazine, 1988 
I think it was during Season 2 of 21 Jump Street that I went bonkers for Johnny Depp. The Sunday night show became the highlight of my week, and I bought every teeny-bopper "Johnny Magazine" (i.e., any magazine featuring Johnny--which was all of them) I could find in our little Ohio town. As soon as I got home, I'd read it, tear it up, and cover my large bedroom closet's fold-out doors with Johnny's photos. 

©TV Guide magazine
Can you imagine how I felt when I found him on the cover of our copy of TV Guide? I loved getting TV Guide in the mail every week and reading its articles about all the stars and shows, so it wasn't unusual for me to ask as soon as I got home from school whether it had arrived. Here's how the conversation went between Mom and me that week: 

Me: "Did we get the TV Guide today?" 
Mom: "Yes. DON'T tear it up! You have to wait till the end of the week! I want to read it. We have to use it."  
Me, upon finding it: [Gasp!!!]
Mom: Remember what I said!

Jump Street's on a Roll
Season 2 of 21 Jump Street may be my favorite of the series. By then, all of the actors on the show were making the characters their own. The cast chemistry was golden. Johnny was most often paired with Peter Deluise, who he later said was his closest friend on the set. Watching their scenes together, you can tell! They had lots of fun working together and coming up with characters and back stories for their undercover assignments.

During Season 2, we all learned more about the personal lives and backgrounds of the show's characters, from the arrival of Penhall's high school sweetheart, Dorothy, to Ioki's harrowing escape as a teenager from Vietnam. Tom Hanson, who seemed a little more relaxed and cooler, had his own set of problems. In this season alone, he revealed the story behind his father’s death, was kidnapped, had a slight midlife crisis, considered quitting his job, witnessed his girlfriend’s murder, and got shot! Some of that was in consecutive weeks! 

No wonder I fell so hard for this guy: He needed several hugs!

The show continued to tackle difficult subjects, including AIDS, drugs, alcohol, weapons, and racism. Guest stars included Christina Applegate, Peter Berg, Mindy Cohn, Jason Priestley, and Ray Walston. Watching these episodes now, I found some that I knew entirely by heart, specific scenes and images that are still--after all these years--clear in my head, and moments that will remain there for at least another 20. There's no getting rid of them now. 

Here, The Kitties explore some of Season 2 episode highlights: 

Johnny Kitties: Celebrating Johnny Depp--21 Jump Street, Season 2 (1987-1988) [October 22, 2010]
  • Episode 24. Christmas in Saigon: This exciting episode delves into Harry Ioki's past as a Vietnamese refugee, a story based on actor Dustin Nguyen's real-life escape during the war. How intriguing it was to find out that Harry Ioki wasn't who he said he was! As he retells his childhood story, we relive his horrific memories. On the lighter side, everyone spends Christmas dinner at Sal's house where we meet his wife Rosa (Mindy Cohn) and their four kids. [Kitty Note: Welcome, Lily, who is thrilled to take the role of Rosa. Mindy Cohn reprises her role once more in episode 27, "Chapel of Love."] Also in this episode, Hanson brings his girlfriend Amy home to meet his mom. (In one of the episodes that I nearly remembered by heart, Orpheus 3.3, Amy is tragically killed during a convenient store hold-up, and Hanson--who feels he could have saved her--nearly drowns in guilt. That episode is stellar but too sad to highlight in the kitty tribute.) 
  • Episode 25. Fear and Loathing with Russell Buckins: In this episode, Hanson meets up with one of his childhood friends, who takes him on  road trip to crash the wedding of an old flame. During this trip, Hanson reveals a rebellious side--something he missed out on growing up. He gets a tattoo, wrestles a bear, misses a court date, considers quitting his job, and--as depicted here--crashes into a cow. 
  • Episode 26. A Big Disease with a Little Name: Considering the time, I think it's fantastic that 21 Jump Street featured a story about AIDS. This is another episode in which Hanson is confronted with his beliefs, mortality, and the direction of his life. He does a lot of soul searching this season! For some comic relief, we're treated with the arrival of Doug Penhall's high school sweetheart, Dorothy, played by Peter Deluise's then-real-life-wife Gina Nemo. Dorothy appears in a few more episodes before she leaves Doug for good. They reminded me of The Honeymooners while it lasted--always arguing, but clearly in love. 
  • Episode 27. Chapel of Love: It's Valentine's Day, and the Jump Street crew have no plans. Instead, they play poker and recount their worst dating stories. Judy shows up late to the game, having just returned from her worst date. This episode is really funny and entertaining until you get to Hanson's story. After dropping him and his date off at a Valentine's Day high school dance, Tom's father--also a policeman--went on patrol with his partner. During a stop at their usual coffee shop, he is shot and killed by a startled burglar! 
  • Episode 28. I'm OK, You Need Work: This week, Hanson goes undercover--without telling anyone--in a drug rehabilitation center to help one of the kids he busted during Season 1. Sadly, the kid dies during a lone escape attempt, and--for being a troublemaker--Tom is drugged up and nearly sent to a state institution to be "lost in the system." Luckily, Captain Fuller figures things out and comes to his rescue. Oh the drama!
  • Episode 32. Raising Marijuana: I didn't remember this episode when I watched it this time around. (Johnny's not in it. Is that why?) It's not a favorite, but it marks the first time that Harry Ioki lets loose and takes on a fun undercover character. Although usually paired with Judy Hoffs, he was teamed up with Penhall for this one. They play geeky Siamese twins with matching clothes, moles, and hairdos.
  • Episode 35. School's Out: During the last episode of the season, the Jump Street program is under threat to be shut down, so everyone is out looking for a back-up job. Judy Hoffs got the best one--to her great dismay--as Officer Milk Carton. On a field trip while teaching grade-schoolers about street safety, she spots a thief running out of a convenient store, orders the kids to stay put, runs him down, and saves the day. Thanks, Officer Milk Carton! (Holly Robinson in this costume is one of the images that has always remained in my head! Do you think she'd be pleased with that?)
What are your favorite episodes from Season 2? 

Tune in next month to catch highlights from Season 3 of 21 Jump Street. (Johnny is getting antsy.)

Did you miss the Johnny Kitties' tribute to Season 1? See it here! 

Thursday, November 04, 2010


For the last couple of months, my calendar has been full of travels and visitors.
My spare time has gone toward an online course, Blogging Your Way, and the resulting laundry list of things to do to improve my blog. While on a break from that, I've been watching the movies of TCM's October Star of the Month Fredric March.
Fredric March
Side note: While I usually fall in love with an actor and then go on a mission to see everything they've ever made, the opposite happened with this guy. I saw all these great movies and had a sudden realization that all had Fredric March in common. Lily and I have concluded that Fredric March is one of those actors that makes a movie better just because he's in it. While we still have a few movies to go in our marathon (Thanks, TCM!), and they've all been good so far, we still like and recommend our old favorites: The Best Years of our LivesInherit the WindNothing SacredA Star is Born, and Hombre. Do you have a favorite?
Lily has been equally occupied: Two weeks ago, she went on her first field trip. While our apartment was getting its annual pesticide treatment, she stayed in a friend's apartment for a day and didn't eat, play, or speak until she returned home.
Last week, I was off to the suburbs for a three-day work meeting and came home to find Dad who visited for the weekend. We were happy to attend The Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear on The National Mall Saturday, though I'm not sure the sanity we sought has returned.
This week, I'm fighting allergies while Lily battles the nightly shadows she finds on the walls. We're both exhausted by Project Runway's season-long drama and crushed by its finale.
Now, I'm finding it hard to stare at the computer as long as I have been, and Lily--as always--is annoyed that I'm sitting at the computer for any length of time at all.
In short, we are spent. Shhh...

Spent (October 29, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: October 29, 2010)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Racing (October 22, 2010)
(Illustration Friday: October 22, 2010)

When Ashes first arrived, she made Comet quite anxious. Eventually, though, he warmed up to her and now they are great pals. Finally, something other than worry gets Comet's heart racing.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Kitties have taken over.

Hello all!

What do you think of the new blog header? Too big, too small, too distracting, just right? I think I like it... and The Kitties are still playing up there. Thanks to Holly Becker and her wonderful online course, Blogging Your Wayfor giving me this easy tip for beautifying my blog. 


Wednesday, October 13, 2010


This weekend, I went home to Ohio to celebrate my nephew Liam's 7th birthday. While nearly every gift was somehow related to Star Wars, he had lots of fun outdoors in the sunshine throwing his new gliding airplanes from one end of the backyard to the other. 

When we took a break to build another Lego Star Wars Speeder, we found Simon testing this one out. He approves. 

Transportation (October 8, 2010)
[Illustration Friday: October 8, 2010]

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Johnny Kitties: Celebrating Johnny Depp--21 Jump Street (Season 1)

[What is Johnny Kitties? See Johnny Kitties: Celebrating Johnny Depp for all the details!]

Fox’s weekly hour-long drama, 21 Jump Street followed undercover cops who posed as students in high schools to investigate crimes. Creators Stephen J. Cannell and Patrick Hasburgh based the show on a real program in Los Angeles. 

Filmed in Vancouver, 21 Jump Street became the first big hit for Fox, a network fighting for an identity among the major stations. I didn’t watch the show from its start, so when the series became available on DVDs in 2004, I was first in line to buy them. 
The Cast
Meet the cast! [clockwise] Holly Robinson, 
Johnny Depp, Dustin Nguyen, 
Peter Deluise, and Frederic Forrest

The 2-hour pilot introduces officers Judy Hoffs (Holly Robinson), Harry Ioki (Dustin Nguyen),  Doug Penhall (Peter Deluise) and Tom Hanson (Johnny Depp) and Captain Richard Jenko (Frederic Forrest). 

Sal Jenco
The cast also includes one of Johnny’s childhood friends, Sal Jenco, as maintenance engineer (as he always called his position) Sal “The Blowfish” Balducci.  Sal is prominent in several episodes—mainly for comic reliefand you’ve got to appreciate that! [Trivia Alert: Sal appears in two of Johnny's later movies, Arizona Dream and Donnie Brasco. Johnny also mentioned his name in Dead Man.]

Officer Tom Hanson
In the series pilot, Tom Hanson is a recent police academy graduate, whose green behavior and baby face land him in trouble at his precinct. They reassign him to the Jump Street Program, where his young looks can work to his advantage in local schools.
Hanson reports to work, located in an abandoned chapel, dressed in full uniform and bogged down by procedure. He initially clashes with everyone, especially Captain Jenko. Captain Jenko, head of the Jump Street Program, acted like a hippie trapped in the ‘60s.  Frederic Forrest, who played him, was a big draw for the cast. Assuming that the series would not last more than a year, Johnny took the role of Hanson for the chance to work with him.

Like A Nightmare on Elm Street, someone else was originally cast in Johnny's role. Can you imagine??? Jeff Yagher filmed for the first few weeks before the producers realized that things weren't working with the character. They went back to the audition tapes and called Johnny. He reshot the scenes, and everything was a go! 

Tom Hanson shows up as a geeky, straight-laced, nonsmoking, saxophone-playing Republican who has no idea who Jimi Hendrix is. That's about as far away from Johnny as you can get. As he put it, “The only thing I have in common with Tom Hanson is that we look alike.” 

New captain, Adam Fuller (Steven Williams) 
takes the show in a different direction. 

A New Leader
Captain Jenko was killed off the show after six episodes and a new captain, Adam Fuller, took over and made some changes. Suddenly, the chapel is filled with employees, who bustled around in the background pushing paper and answering phones. Serious, imposing, and definitely in charge, Captain Fuller (Steven Williams) was just who they needed.
Once Captain Fuller arrived, my memories came flooding back with each new episode. Let the giddiness begin!
The Legacy
It is well documented that Johnny felt trapped by 21 Jump Street, as Fox fed off his looks and turned him into a teen idol to sell the show. He felt like a product in a massive machine, over which he had no control. “He had serious chops as an actor. He was beginning to realize that Marlon Brando wasn't going to be on the cover of next week's Teen Beat and maybe he shouldn't be there either," series creator Stephen J. Cannell said. "And maybe this show wasn't taking him where he wanted to go, so there was some frustration."
Johnny can rest assured that 21 Jump Street isn’t as dark a chapter in his career as he may think. I and millions of others loved and learned from the show. Season 1 covered such topics as burglary, vandalism, arson, drug use, gangs, and abuse. Guest stars included Jason Priestly, Josh Brolin, Blair Underwood, and Johnny's then-girlfriend Sherilyn Fenn.
The Tribute
Drawing something about 21 Jump Street was daunting. It wasn’t until I started watching Season 1’s 18 episodes—covering different topics, characters, and storylines—that I started to panic. I decided that each season deserved its own drawing. After all, this show represents four years of Johnny’s life and should not (and could not) be squeezed onto one page.  
Who's that girl?
The illustration concept is courtesy of the show’s ending credits sequence. As the credits roll, an unidentified woman with long red fingernails casually flips through a yearbook. My sister and I always wondered about this lady, and we were not alone. In his DVD commentary, Peter Deluise asks, “Who was this woman? Where does she come from? Is she a streetwalker?” Exactly. After the first season, they switched from the yearbook action to a montage of student sports and other activities. But, come on, the mysterious streetwalker is much funnier. I’m sticking with her.
Here, The Kitties share the highlights from 21 Jump Street, Season 1.

Johnny Kitties: The Johnny Depp Project: 21 Jump Street--Season 1 (1987) [October 12, 2010]

Meet the kitty cast with '80s flair!
  • Norman as Doug Penhall, who loved wearing his key earring.
  • Comet as Harry Ioki, who was always stylin' with bright colors, interesting ties, or shiny jewelry.
  • Ashes as Judy Hoffs, who rocked the biggest hair and a jean jacket smothered in pins and badges.
  • Gordon as Tom Hanson, who was awesome.
  • B.J. as Captain Adam Fuller, who always looked coolest in his shades. (B.J. is digging the beard.)
  • Simon as Sal Balducci, who was nicknamed "The Blowfish" because of a certain trick that Simon is still perfecting. 

Sing the song! 
I loved 21 Jump Street’s theme song, sung by Holly Robinson. But, now that I’ve heard it an infinite number of times on the DVDs, I’m over it. When I heard it on Sunday nights at 7, though, it was the greatest because it marked the start of a new episode.

Check out some episode highlights!
  • Episode 3. America, What a Town: Throughout the show, the Jump Street cast created different handshakes to pass the time and entertain themselves. (Watch the show and you'll find more!) The one that The Kitties demonstrate here ended up in the opening credits' montage.
  • Episode 4. Don't Pet The Teacher: Inherited from his father, Hanson's Mustang got a key role in this episode when one of its tires blew and Tom made a date with the woman who came to his rescue. I loved that car.
  • Episode 6. The Worst Night of Your Life: The Kitties insisted on documenting this moment. Investigating a possible arson threat, everyone dressed up to attend prom. You've got to love the '80s outfits!
  • Episode 9. Blindsided: This episode introduced The McQuaid Brothers. Hanson and Penhall created these covers, high school student bullies who became recurring characters for the next few years.
  • Episode 13. Mean Streets and Pastel Houses: Investigating rival gangs, Hanson went punk for this episode and enjoyed it! Here, Gordon dives into the crowd at a rock concert. (He does his own stunts.)

What are your favorite episodes from Season 1? 

Tune in next month to see some of my favorite moments from 21 Jump Street, Season 2! 

Note: Aside from my own illustration, all images ©Fox Broadcasting Company.