Davey and Goliath is the title of a 1960s stop-motion animated children's Christian television series. The programs, produced by the Lutheran Church in America (now a part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America), were produced by Art Clokey after the success of his Gumby series.
Each 15-minute episode features the adventures of Davey Hansen and his "talking" dog Goliath (although only Davey and the viewer can hear him speak) as they learn the love of God through everyday occurrences. Many of the episodes also feature Davey's parents, his sister Sally, as well as Davey's friends; Jimmy, Teddy, and Nathanial in earlier episodes; Jonathan, Jimmy, Nicky (who looked a lot like Teddy) and Cisco on later ones (all were members of the "Jickets" club).
The introductory music is based on the popular Christian hymn "A Mighty Fortress is Our God", written by Martin Luther around 1529 (in German, "Eine feste Burg").
The show was aimed at a younger audience, and generally dealt with issues such as respect for authority, sharing, and prejudice. Eventually these themes included more serious issues such as racism, death, religious intolerance, and vandalism. In general, the characters found themselves in situations which had to be overcome by placing their faith in God. Davey's friends, Nathanial (in the 1960s episodes) and Jonathan Reed on the 70's episodes, were African-American, and some of the first African-American characters to appear as a friend of a television show's lead character. While Our Gang in the 1930's and 1940's had African American children as friends of lead characters, that was a film series prior to television.
The Davey & Goliath series lasted until 1965 originally, but several holiday 30 minute special episodes were created in the late 1960s. The series resumed with some new characters in 1971 and continued until 1973. In 1975, a final 30 minute summer episode was created. In 2004 Art Clokey's son, Joe, produced a new episode, "Davey and Goliath's Snowboard Christmas."
Critics cite the show as tastefully prompting the spiritual curiosity of children, without coming off as preachy.