Tales of the Gold Monkey

The Show

Tales of the Gold Monkey aired from 22 September 1982 until 1 June 1983. It consisted of 21 episodes spanning over one season. The show was released following the success of Indiana Jones And The Raiders Of The Lost Ark Although very well received by the critics consecutive seasons were not considered. The viewer ratings did not justify the expensive filming and production. It also inspired Disney’s animated TV show Talespin.

Created by the legendary 80s TV guru, Donald P. Bellisario (also known for Magnum p.i. and Airwolf). Inspiration for the series was the 1939 drama film “Only Angels Have Wings”. Set in the South Pacific during the late 1930s, “Tales of the Golden Monkey” followed the adventures of Jake Cutter, a cargo pilot and adventurer portrayed by Stephen Collins. Jake’s trusty steed, a Grumman Goose seaplane, took him to various remote and exotic destinations. The show’s backdrop of lush tropical islands, azure waters, and dense jungles evoked a sense of wonder and nostalgia for a bygone era.


The whole plot of the show revolves around a mythical statue of a monkey made of solid gold. Protected by fierce tribes of monkeys reminiscent of the original Planets of the Apes. The elusive statue is never found and a brass replica was placed in the bar for the rest of the series.


Starring Stephen Collins as the pilot “Jake Cutter”. Together with Caitlin O’Heaney as ” Sarah Stickney White”. The U.S. government operative performs as a singer in the Monkey Bar and is a cover for her operation.


Jeff MacKay plays the role of the mechanic “Corky”, and in the mix is a one-eyed Jack Russel ironically called “Jack”


Cutter (Stephen Collins), an ex-army pilot, now operates a cargo-hauling business, with a red and white Grumman Goose seaplane, christened “Cutter’s Goose”. “Tales of the Golden Monkey” excelled in crafting episodic adventures with a touch of swashbuckling excitement. The series leaned into the romanticized vision of aviation in the 1930s and delivered daring escapades, from aerial dogfights to treasure hunts and encounters with pirates. The show’s willingness to embrace the adventurous spirit of the time period made it an appealing watch for fans of action and exploration.


The series had a knack for evoking a sense of nostalgia for classic adventure tales like “Indiana Jones” and “Casablanca.” It transported viewers to an era of intrigue, exploration, and derring-do, capturing the imagination of those who longed for adventure on the high seas and in uncharted territories.


Tales of the Gold Monkey received 4 Emmy nominations in 1983 and received one for Outstanding Art Direction for a Series. The show was a charming and adventurous series that transported viewers to a world of daring aviators, exotic locales, and thrilling escapades. While it may have been short-lived, its enduring appeal lies in its nostalgic homage to a bygone era of adventure storytelling. For fans of classic adventure and those seeking a thoughtful journey back in time, this TV show remains a treasure worth discovering or rediscovering.

Unfortunately, “Tales of the Golden Monkey” was canceled after just one season, leaving audiences with a mere 21 episodes to enjoy. However, its short run did not diminish its impact. The show developed a dedicated fan base that continues to fondly remember its adventurous tales and captivating characters. It also paved the way for future adventure series that sought to capture the spirit of exploration and heroism.


The Cast

  1. Stephen Collins
  2. Jeff MacKay
  3. Caitlin O’Heany
  4. Roddy McDowall

TV intro


Tales of the Gold Monkey – Wikipedia