June 27, 2007

Memories of Uncle Bob and The Lucky 7 Club

There was a time when children's shows weren't overfilled with unecessary production gimmicks, and a show's simplicity was its charm. Robert "Uncle Bob" Stewart was one of the first to conceive a wholesome show for children which he called, Uncle Bob's Lucky 7 Club. Co-hosted by two liveley puppets named Spanky and Pancho, the show was the epitomoe of children show fun in the early years of television broadcasting.

Our good friend Kuya Geezer was lucky enough to be part of the live studio audience, and was also one of the many proud club members. In this very special feature, he shares with us his fond memories of the show, and its gentle host Uncle Bob.

I got this back in ’66 like it says in the picture after I joined Uncle Bob's Lucky 7 Club. I also got my membership card with my "secret code" typed on the back of the card.

I joined Uncle Bob’s Lucky 7 Club probably even before I could read. I remember my Mom and Dad taking us to the studio to be part of the live audience. I was only four at the time. I remember because Uncle Bob interviewed my brother and me on TV, and he asked how old we were. He asked me first, so I said I was 5. I was wrong, but I didn’t know that yet. My older brother corrected me right away, right there on national TV, "NO YOU’RE NOT, I’M 5, and YOU’RE ONLY 4!" Of course he was right but who cares when you’re 4 years old? We started an argument right there. I think Uncle Bob went to commercial.


CLICK ON IMAGE FOR LARGER VIEW

Here is a genuine letter from Uncle Bob typed on the RBS letterhead dated May 7, 1970. I was just 11 years old!!

Later on when I could already write semi-literately, this was when I was around 6 or 7 I asked to "officially" join the club. So after what seemed like an eternity I finally got my Lucky 7 membership card in the mail complete with my own "secret code number" in the back which I wasn't supposed to show anyone. What a thrill! Kids would write letters to Uncle Bob and he would always have a portion of the program where he would read them on the air. Whenever I wrote him, I wouldn't miss the show for the next three weeks so I could hear him read my letter to all the viewers. A lot of times we would draw something at the bottom of the letter and he would hold it up to the camera to show the artwork to the viewers.

Some of the advertisers I remember from his show were Royal Gelatin (pum pa rum pum pum…), Crazy Foam Gun, Pan Pizza, Marisol Manor, G.I. Joe, Panacraft Handicrafts, and the Popcar, the first battery ride-on toy car from Japan . I still remember him saying it only cost P200.00. I’m sure that was quite a bit of change for that time.

Also, would you believe that my older brother Pancho, was on of Uncle Bob’s puppeteers? I think he started in 1978 or so until he left for the States in 1982. Anyways that was way after my time as a member of Lucky 7 club in the sixties.

I'm glad I kept this all these years and brought it with me even when I came to America . Thanks for the great TV times Uncle Bob We all miss you! Uncle Bob passed away in his home in Phoenix, Arizona in 2006.



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14 comments:

Totoy Time Machine said...

Kuya Geezer, I enjoyed your piece alot! I remember wondering as a child how Uncle Bob, who was obviously so "American", ended up on Philippine TV. He often used catch phrases like "Hot Diggidy-Dog!", diba?
Keep 'em coming, Geez!Welcome back to your regular postings, Nostalgia Manila! Sabi nga ng iba, puyatan na naman!

Vince said...

I was a member of Uncle Bob's lucky 7 Club too! I had the little ID card and everything. I wanted so bad to go to channel 7 to be on the TV show and meet Uncle Bob, but alas that never happened. I remember the name of one of the puppets was 'Spanky the Elephant', remember? Good memories!

ka daniel said...

wow...great memories from this piece! i enjoyed reading it...

sayang at di ako pinanganak noong heyday ni uncle bob mismo...although i did grow up watching "uncle bob's lucky 7 club" every saturday and being awed at all the toys i saw, i never got to watch THE uncle bob himself...at that time kasi, nung late '80s, his son jodie (or tito jodie to all the viewers) already took over hosting chores...

monchito said...

amazing! i remember that when it was Uncle Bob's son who took over the show, things really started to change and the magic was gone.

Do you know when the show 1st went on air? :)

ka daniel said...

monchito: it was, if im not mistaken, in 1962 or '63 when the original "uncle bob's lucky 7 club" first aired...i remember coming across some old sunday magazines from that period (at the ateneo library)--those mags used to have tv guides along with it, at may listing na ng "uncle bob's..." at that time...it was also one of the very first local shows that GMA produced...

gcel said...

Hello, I'm with GMA and we are working on a 60th anniversary book. I would like to ask permission to use the Uncle Bob photo and letter you have, with proper citation.
If you have other Uncle Bob memorabilia, I would also appreciate if you can share it with us, too.

Nostalgia Manila said...

Gcel of GMA7,

Feel free to use any materials. Please use credits: Nostalgia Manila & Kuya Geezer.

Thank you,
--NM

Anonymous said...

I used to burn with envy with those affluent spoiled brats playing with them bad-ass toys. I was always dreaming to be a part of the show, iniisip ko kasi noon binibigay nila ng libre yung mga toys dun sa mga bata pagkatapos ng show eh....

SiopaoMan said...

Did Uncle Bob do some voice over commercials back then? What comes to my mind is that Del Monte Ketchup commercial where there was a boy who was talking while putting ketchup on his food. The voice over sounded so distinctly Uncle Bob's.

Kids learned so much from the Uncle Bob's show. Not only was it one of the first locally produced children's program, kids of our generation can rightfully claim that Uncle Bob was our Mr. Rogers
"rum pum pum pum pum pum pum pum pum...."

wayne moises said...

I watch all the classic cartoons when I was six years old at that time during childhood years all my favorites like popeye Casper gumby beany&cecil sinbad jr.three stooges
Mightor wacky races gigantor marvel heroes etc and also I read pinoy comics newspapers as well playing toys like toy soldiers cars airplanes toy guns etc all the kiddie memories remains a historic reminder from the past and a part of world culture.thanks for the information about your comments in your opinion .from:Wayne

wayne moises said...

I missed all the classic cartoons during my childhood memories when I was six years old at that time since the 1960's era all my favorites like Popeye Casper Gumby Beany&Cecil Sinbad Jr.Wacky Races Mightor Marvel Heroes and other favorites from the past childhood years and remains the reminder from the past.Thanks for the information .From:Wayne

wayne moises said...

I missed him now the show from the 1960's aired on Channel 7 talk/variety/kids show plus classic cartoons like Popeye Gumby Casper Beany and Cecil Sinbad Jr Three Stooges and other favorites from the past decades during childhood years in the Philippines for a long time.Thanks!From:Wayne

wayne moises said...

I like Popeye he is my idol turns 85 years old celebrated as the spinach eating superhero recognized around the world.Thanks!!!!From:Wayne

wayne moises said...

A legacy come true that Uncle Bob he is the wartime journalist turned broadcaster started in 1950 as the news reporter on radio and later to television created channel 7 in 1961 nearly 55 years ago.Thanks!!!!



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