A Lovely Bunch Of Coconuts, Gold Rush Gumby, Gumbasia, Gumby Concerto, Gumby On The Moon, Hot Ice, In The Dough, Mirror Land, Mirror-aculous Recovery, Moon Trip, Mysterious Fires, Robot Rumpus, Stuck On Books, The Indian Challange, The Small Planets, The Witty Witch, Too Loo, Trapped On The Moon, Tricky Train.
Dreamed up by Art Clokey (from a small town called Millington, Michigan), Gumby had its genesis in a 1953 theatrical 3-minute short called Gumbasia, while studying at the University of Southern California under the direction of Slavko Vorkapich. It was a surreal short of moving and expanding lumps of clay set to music, in a parody of Fantasia. Gumbasia was created in a style called Kinesthetic Film Principles that Vorkapich taught. Described as "massaging of the eye cells" this technique based on camera movements and editing is responsible for much of the Gumby look and feel. In 1955 Art showed Gumbasia to movie producer Sam Engel who immediately funded a 15 minute short film later titled Gumby Goes to the Moon. This was ultimately seen by Tom Sarnoff at NBC who loved it so much that he put the wheels in motion for a full audience test during the Howdy Doody Show. Gumby himself first appeared on the Howdy Doody show in 1956 and was given his own NBC series in 1957.
Gumby was inspired by a suggestion Clokey's wife made that he base his character on the Gingerbread Man. He was green simply because that was Clokey's favorite color. Gumby's legs and feet were made wide for pragmatic reasons: they ensured the clay character would stand up during stop-motion filming. The famous slanted shape of Gumby's head was based on the hair style of Clokey's father in an old photograph.