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‘Hawaiian Eye’ Star Poncie Ponce Dies
Hollywood Reporter ^ | 7/26/2013 | Mike Barnes

Posted on 08/01/2013 12:55:02 PM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo

The Maui native played the cab driver with the straw hat and ukulele on the exotic 1960s ABC detective series.

Poncie Ponce, who played a wise-cracking cab driver on the 1960s ABC detective series Hawaiian Eye, the first network series to be set in the 50th state, has died. He was 80.

Ponce, a native of Maui, Hawaii, who also appeared opposite Elvis Presley in Speedway (1968), died July 19 at his home in Los Angeles, his family reported.

During Hawaiian Eye’s opening each week, Ponce was seen floating in the ocean on an inner tube, wearing his trademark straw hat and stroking a ukulele. His character Kazuo "Kim" Quisado had a lot of friends in Honolulu, and he helped the show’s handsome private investigators (Anthony Eisley and Robert Conrad) crack cases. Connie Stevens played a nightclub singer/photographer on the series, which was actually filmed on a lot in Burbank.

Ponce, who served as a corporal in the U.S. Army stationed in Germany during the Korean War, came to Los Angeles to pursue a career in show business after entertaining the locals in Hawaii. He sang and did impressions on a live weekend amateur talent show called Rocket to Stardom that was broadcast from the Wilshire Boulevard showroom of automobile dealer Bob Yeakel. (Phil Spector and Lenny Bruce, among others, would also appear on that show.)

Later, Warner Bros. execs spotted his act at a Santa Monica nightclub and signed him for the role of Kim. In 1962, the studio’s record label released his album Poncie Ponce Sings.

When Hawaiian Eye’s run of four seasons came to an end in September 1963, Ponce traveled the world, singing and performing in nightclubs in Australia, Argentina, Japan and elsewhere.

In addition to playing a member of race car driver Presley’s pit crew in Speedway, Ponce appeared as Kim in 77 Sunset Strip, another Warner Bros. exotic-locale detective series of the era. He also had a bit role as Pineapple in the comedy The World’s Greatest Lover (1977), starring Gene Wilder.

Survivors include his wife of 57 years, Sherry; his daughters, Debra, Paula and Margaret; grandsons Dane, Devin, Jack and Charles; sisters Feliza and Juanita; and brothers Alfred, Joseph and Delphine.

Services will be held Aug. 1 at 2 p.m. at St. Monica Catholic Church in Santa Monica.


TOPICS: TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: classictv
You probably are gray-haired or close to remember this TV show.
1 posted on 08/01/2013 12:55:02 PM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo
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2 posted on 08/01/2013 12:56:59 PM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

I remember the show and the others listed in the article.


3 posted on 08/01/2013 12:59:40 PM PDT by Old Grumpy
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

He outlived the entire cast of the original Hawaii Five-O, a much more recent show.


4 posted on 08/01/2013 1:01:37 PM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: Colonel Kangaroo
I remember the theme song.
Wasn't Fabian in this weekly show ?
5 posted on 08/01/2013 1:14:53 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
Whoops...Fabian was in 77 Sunset Strip, a similar show.
6 posted on 08/01/2013 1:16:08 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

Grey in the beard and smooth on top qualifies, right??

Yes, I remember the show.


7 posted on 08/01/2013 1:17:31 PM PDT by T-Bird45 (It feels like the seventies, and it shouldn't.)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
Or, maybe that was Ed “Kookie” Burns
8 posted on 08/01/2013 1:17:52 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

“Kookie Kookie lend me your comb”


9 posted on 08/01/2013 1:28:10 PM PDT by citizen (We get the government we choose. America either voted for Obama or handed it to him by not voting.)
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

Sad to hear this news. One of my favorite shows of all time . I was just 7 in 1959 when the show first came on the air but was fascinated by it , happily unaware that most of the filming was done on a lot in Hollywood and not in Honolulu . Have the first 3 seasons ( 4th with Troy Donohue I didn’t care for ) on DVD and will watch an episode tonight . Thanks for letting us know about Kimbo .


10 posted on 08/01/2013 1:33:59 PM PDT by sushiman ( .)
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To: y'all

At 0:54 in the link below. . .

During Hawaiian Eye’s opening each week, Ponce was seen floating in the ocean on an inner tube, wearing his trademark straw hat and stroking a ukulele.

>
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWgT43pWB4U


11 posted on 08/01/2013 1:43:14 PM PDT by deks ("...the battle...liberty against the overreach of the federal government" Ken Cuccinelli)
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

Patch me through to McGarrett!


12 posted on 08/01/2013 1:49:08 PM PDT by Elderberry
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To: deks

The theme music is a tune that really sticks with you over the years.


13 posted on 08/01/2013 1:54:53 PM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

“The soft island breeze brings you strange melodies
And they tell of exotic mysteries under the tropical spell of Hawaiin Eye. “


14 posted on 08/01/2013 2:01:45 PM PDT by sushiman ( .)
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To: sushiman

Hawaiian ! oops


15 posted on 08/01/2013 2:02:18 PM PDT by sushiman ( .)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

It’s EDD...not Ed...is it Byrnes??


16 posted on 08/01/2013 2:03:26 PM PDT by Ann Archy (Abortion......the HUMAN Sacrifice to the god of Convenience.)
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To: T-Bird45

“Book ‘em, Dano...”


17 posted on 08/01/2013 2:06:11 PM PDT by Noumenon (What would Michael Collins do?)
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To: sushiman

Poncie Ponce

The early Hawaiian prototype for Flavor Flav?


18 posted on 08/01/2013 2:07:29 PM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: Ann Archy
It’s EDD...not Ed...is it Byrnes??

EDD

It's just like ED. But with more D.


19 posted on 08/01/2013 2:08:56 PM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

Robert Conrad pre-’Wild, Wild West’...


20 posted on 08/01/2013 2:12:50 PM PDT by who knows what evil? (G-d saved more animals than people on the ark...www.siameserescue.org.)
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

I am grey haired, and I do remember it. Connie Stevens’ character’s name was Cricket Blake.


21 posted on 08/01/2013 2:16:20 PM PDT by GreyFriar (Spearhead - 3rd Armored Division 75-78 & 83-87)
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To: GreyFriar

Cricket Blake , Tracey Steele , Tom Lopaka and Kim Kusano !


22 posted on 08/01/2013 2:25:47 PM PDT by sushiman ( .)
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To: Old Grumpy

One of favorites was 77 Sunset Strip. How could we forget “Kookie, Kookie, lend me your comb?”


23 posted on 08/01/2013 2:27:01 PM PDT by Inyo-Mono (NRA)
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

Ooops - it was Quisado . Always thought Kusano which is a Japanese surname . Also forgot the Greg McKenzie character played by Grant Williams of Incredible Shrinking man fame .


24 posted on 08/01/2013 2:29:37 PM PDT by sushiman ( .)
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To: Inyo-Mono

It gradually became corny when Kookie and Roscoe’s roles became more prominent .


25 posted on 08/01/2013 2:31:53 PM PDT by sushiman ( .)
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To: Inyo-Mono

Right! If I remember correctly, I think it was Connie Stevens who sang that song.


26 posted on 08/01/2013 3:15:30 PM PDT by Old Grumpy
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

Another show, set in that period of time, was Surfside 6, which was (supposedly) filmed in Miami. Long time ago!


27 posted on 08/01/2013 3:21:59 PM PDT by Old Grumpy
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To: citizen

There you go !


28 posted on 08/01/2013 4:25:49 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: Colonel Kangaroo

RIP.


29 posted on 08/01/2013 5:02:05 PM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (Resist We Much)
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