[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/TopCatsGangofCats.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:350:From left to right: Officer Dibble, Fancy-Fancy, Benny the Ball, Top Cat, Choo-Choo, Spook, Brain]]

Creator/HannaBarbera produced this AnimatedSeries for Creator/{{ABC}} in 1961. Unlike the studio's earlier series, ''Top Cat'' was set in the midst of UsefulNotes/NewYorkCity. Even before the first episode was broadcast, Bill Hanna knew that ''Top Cat'' was going to be popular.

Top Cat led his gang of alley cats through one ZanyScheme after another, keeping the cats ahead of Officer Charlie Dibble, the local beat cop. The series obviously took a page from ''Series/ThePhilSilversShow'', with "T.C." (as his gang called him) based on Phil Silvers' Sgt. Ernie Bilko.

In the late 1980s, Arnold Stang [[RoleReprisal reprised]] his Top Cat role in the syndicated series ''WesternAnimation/YogisTreasureHunt'' and the MadeForTVMovie ''Top Cat and the Beverly Hills Cats''. In 1990, T.C. and Choo-Choo had an entry in the ''Fender Bender 500'' segment of ''WakeRattleAndRoll''. Top Cat and his gang have also appeared on ''WesternAnimation/HarveyBirdmanAttorneyAtLaw''.

A traditionally animated [[WesternAnimation/TopCatTheMovie Top Cat movie]] has [[http://www.cartoonbrew.com/feature-film/mexican-top-cat-movie-in-3d.html been released]] in 2011 in Mexico, where the show has been especially popular in the past decades [[note]] where it's known as "Don Gato y Su Pandilla"[[/note]].
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!!This series provides examples of:
* AnimatedSeries
* AFatherToHisMen: Top cat is hinted to be this to his gang.
* ArsonMurderAndJaywalking: In one episode where Officer Dibble has been replaced by another, even more strict, police officer, who is so zealous that he is drawing public complaints to his superior for being excessive. To get rid of him, T.C. convinces said officer that the city's mayor is Cha-cha Charlie, a gangster wanted by police for extortion, smuggling and leading a dance school without permission.
* BigApplesauce
* BlackBeadEyes: Benny. Also Dibble in the show, but he gained sclerae in modern depictions, as seen above.
* ButtMonkey: Dibble and sometimes Benny.
* CaptivityHarmonica
* TheCasanova: Fancy-Fancy, in a PG-rated sort of way.
* CastingGag: Benny was the [[ThePhilSilversShow Doberman]] character and was fittingly voiced by Doberman himself, Maurice Gosfield.
* CatsAreMean: Averted--Top Cat may be a con artist, but he's also a pretty decent guy. He once helped out an immigrant hot dog vendor who had been conned (unbeknownst to the vendor) by another pair of swindlers.
** On the other hand, he was planning on scamming him himself...
*** The movie makes his decent side clearer, as he not only saves an old woman from being squashed, he makes it clear to his gang when they suggest stealing someone's tickets to an event that they will only steal from someone who deserves it. He is also shocked to learn that he has been accused of stealing from an orphanage.
* TheCharmer: TC, ''big time''.
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: Benny and Brain
* CoinOnAStringTrick: Seen in the opening credits.
* CompletelyDifferentTitle: ''Don Gato'' (kinda like ''Mr. Cat'') in Latin America. While most English-speaking tropers only hear the term Don in the context of a stereotypical mafia boss, the term as used in Mexico has nothing to do with criminals. It's more a term of respect and endearment for the topmost authoritative figure in a community, although usually only used in rural or low-income communities. It's a very fitting translation to the name ''Top'' Cat, that even better portrays how his followers feel about him.
** In Brazil is ''Manda-Chuva'', which is an old term used to design leaders.
* BrilliantButLazy: Though not the laziest bum in the box, T.C. tends to rely on the others to do the manual work while he does the mental work.
* TheButlerDidIt: "The Missing Heir" and "Top Cat and the Beverly Hills Cats".
* CoolCat: Top Cat and company, particularly Spook.
* DeadpanSnarker: TC.
--> '''TC:''' ''[to Dibble]'' I'd suggest a battle of wits, [[TakeThat but you're only]] [[StealthInsult half-prepared]].
* DepthDeception: Twice in the opening credits.
* TheDitz: Brain.
* [[FriendlyEnemy Friendly Enemies]]: TC and Dibble. The former will always find a way to humiliate the latter, while the latter is deliriously happy at every opportunity to arrest TC. But they'd give their lives for each other just as quickly.
* TheFettered: Officer Dibble. He's passionately devoted to his duty, even when his duty causes him great grief and makes him the butt of all jokes.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: All over the place.
--> '''[[TheCasanova Fancy]]:''' This is the job for me; I'm an expert on curves.
* HalfDressedCartoonAnimal
* HalfHourComedy
* HeroAntagonist: Officer Dibble
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: TC, and Officer Dibble.
* JiveTurkey: Spook.
* LandmarkSale
* LateToThePunchline: Getting the core joke of the series really required an understanding of period American street culture and of the likes of Creator/DamonRunyon. A lot of kids probably only understood that it was a show about a street gang full of colorful hoods some years later.
* LaughTrack: Except in the Mexican dub.
* LionsAndTigersAndHumansOhMy
* MeddlesomePatrolman: Officer Dibble
* MistakenIdentity: Benny is subject to a few of these.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: In the episode "The Tycoon", a millionaire in search of a needy person to receive a million dollars from him learned from Benny how badly off the gang was, so he wrote out a check to Top Cat. As a result, when all the merchants found out, Top Cat and his bunch were treated like royalty. [[EasyComeEasyGo But in the end, they lost everything again]] because Top Cat tore up the check, thinking it was for a 25-cent raffle.
* NiceJobFixingItVillain: If not for [[TheButlerDidIt the butler's plans to get rid of Benny and inherit Mrs. Vandergelt's fortune]], Top Cat and his gang wouldn't have found her missing niece.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Fancy's voice is basically Cary Grant.
* NonIndicativeName: Brain is not very smart. In the comics, however, he's just as intelligent as his name implies.
* OnOneCondition: In "The Missing Heir", a rich person's disappeared cat had a deadline to reappear or else the butler would get the inheritance. Benny [[MistakenIdentity was mistaken]] for the missing cat, turning him into the target of the butler's ire. The real cat then appeared and got the money despite having missed the deadline. The viewers were left to assume that it was because [[TheButlerDidIt it was the butler]] who caused the disappearance in the first place.
** ''Top Cat and the Beverly Hills Cats'': With the disappearance of Mrs. Vandergelt's niece Amy Vandergelt, Benny was the next in line for the inheritance. (Mrs. Vandergelt had other relatives but [[PassedOverInheritance despised them all]] for unspecified reasons.) Provided that Amy didn't return and nothing bad happened to Benny in the next 48 hours, he'd get the inheritance. If something happened to him, the butler would get the money.
* PlayingCyrano: Top Cat does it for Choo-Choo. As usual with this plan, it does not end well.
* PunnyName: The Mexican dub ''excelled'' at [[DubNameChange giving these to main characters and one-shots]]. The original version was more straightforward.
* RealVehicleReveal: In the opening credits, Top Cat appears to be riding in the back of a limousine. However, as the car turns a corner, it is revealed he is actually riding on the fender.
* RepeatingSoTheAudienceCanHear: Officer Dibble, every time he speaks to his superiors (or someone else) over the phone.
* RingAroundTheCollar
* SerialRomeo: Choo-Choo. Poor guy.
* ShoutOut: Lots. In ''Farewell, Mr. Dibble'', for instance, Top Cat paraphrases ''Theatre/FiniansRainbow''.
* SneezeOfDoom: Almost a Running Gag. Dibble sneezes while disguising himself as a statue when a curator dusts his face (curator says "Gesundheit"), Choo-Choo gives the gang away when they are hiding from gangsters (T.C. stops him with the finger trick, but then lets go) and Benny sneezes thrice in the show: first time he explodes a barrel, second time he explodes a safe and the third time he explodes a building.
* TalkingAnimal
* TrueCompanions
* VillainProtagonist: T.C. is only this in the [[DownplayedTrope loosest sense of the term]]. He runs a street gang of cats and constantly [[GetRichQuickScheme schemes to get rich,]] but he rarely does anything evil.
* ViolinScam
* WraparoundBackground: Well, this is Hanna-Barbera, after all.
* WritingAroundTrademarks: Known in the United Kingdom as ''Boss Cat'', as there was a British cat food brand called Top Cat. Only the on-screen title was changed, the theme tune still used "Top Cat".
** This has long since been a defunct trope however, everyone in the UK knows him as Top Cat where the series is still quite popular. The original title has been restored for many many years now.
* XanatosGambit: T.C. is a master at these, even when they devolve into XanatosSpeedChess. When his plans go terribly wrong, Top Cat never ends up worse than when he started, and someone, whether Officer Dibble or one of his gang, ''always'' comes out better off.
* YouGottaHaveBlueHair[=/=]AmazingTechnicolorWildlife: The cats have interesting fur colors.
* ZanyScheme
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