As I stare at the floppies and videocassettes, Lori explains, “Specifically, he’s Heathcliff the Cat.”
I charge headlong into a morass of my own making. “Fat cat, a gourmand, lazy, sarcastic.”
Unimpressed, Lori observes, “That’s Garfield. Very different from Heathcliff.”
I sigh, feeling like a dolt. Lori picks up on this. She sits in a chair opposite me, her tone softening. “Don’t beat yourself up. You’re still new to children’s television.”
She’s right. Plus Lori’s been around a long time and she knows the business. She says, “We’ve already produced sixty-five episodes of Heathcliff and the Catillac Cats.”
I know better than to ask who the Catillac Cats are, figuring I’ll find out in due time. As I relax, Lori shifts and says, “But you should have known about Heathcliff. The first thing you should have done when you came on staff was research all the series we’ve produced.” Showing me she’s not saying this just to make me feel bad, Lori adds “If Jean or Andy ask you something about Pole Position or Inspector Gadget or Rainbow Brite you want to know about it in advance.”
“Got it,” I say, determined to start my research on all the DIC series tonight.
“And,” she adds, pushing the floppy discs and videocassettes across my desk to me, “since you’re going to be story editing the next twenty-one episodes of Heathcliff and the Catillac Cats, you might as well start with this.”
The words are stuck in my throat but she knows how I feel.
She stands, says, “Get to work” and leaves. I’m pretty sure I see a faint glint of fairy dust in her wake.