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''Babar'' is a series of popular French children's books first published in 1931, about a young elephant who leaves his jungle, visits a large city where he befriends an elderly lady and learns of human ways. After he returns to his jungle, Babar shares what he's learned about human ways with his fellow elephants, followed by the elephants deciding to construct a city they name Celesteville. Finally, Babar is made king of the elephants.

Seen by some as an allegory of French colonialism, with Babar a young native who goes to France for education and comes back to teach the ways of civilization (defined as "the way the French do things" to his fellow countrymen.)

An AnimatedSeries was produced by {{Nelvana}} and originally aired between 1989 and 1991 and in 2000. The series was broadcast in 30 languages in over 150 countries, making it one of the largest distributed animated shows up to that point. There have also been two movies, but both came and went at the box office with little fanfare.

A new AllCGICartoon version, ''WesternAnimation/BabarAndTheAdventuresOfBadou'', began airing on the Disney Junior block of DisneyChannel on Valentine's Day, 2011.

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!!Tropes featured in the ''Babar'' animated series include:

* ZeroPercentApprovalRating: Rataxes, in various Rhinoland polls. Despite his tendencies, this often worries Rataxes.
* ActionMom: Celeste (and, to a lesser extent, Babar's mother) when the situation calls for it.
* AddedAlliterativeAppeal: Pompadour's numerous 'Pachyderm Public Opinion Polls'.
* AerithAndBob: Babar and Celeste. Rataxes and his wife, Lady Rataxes, AKA Louise.
* AnAesop: You bet. Pretty much used in every episode.
* AIIsACrapshoot: Arthur’s robots “Bob” and “Bob Jr.”
* AlternativeForeignThemeSong: The Japanese version uses [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dabKIf_jygc "Graduation"]] by Arisa Mizuki as its theme song.
* AmbiguouslyGay: Pompadour. Tuskless and very effeminate.
* AnimalGenderBender: Madmoiselle Soretoza from "The Show Must Go On" is a female ostrich with black-and-white male plumage.
* AnthropomorphicShift: Willingly invoked by the characters themselves. After Babar returned from the city and shared his experiences there, the rest of the elephants (plus other jungle animals, all of them being {{Talking Animal}}s) found such human civilization aspects (houses, cars, books, clothes, walking upright, etc.) as highly appealing, and decided to adapt them for themselves and become {{Civilized Animal}}s, including building the city of Celesteville.
* BearsAreBadNews: Ursa Major and his polar bear pack in "Land of Ice", who terrorize the neighboring penguins and refuse to negotiate when Babar and his family try to reason with them.
* BeleagueredBureaucrat: Pompadour, Cornelius and Basil occasionally suffer from this.
* BigNo: Babar when he discovers his mother's dead body.
* BoisterousBruiser: Rataxes.
* BowtiesAreCool: Babar sports a red one.
* CanonForeigner: Pompadour, Trubadour and Basil.
* ChildhoodFriendRomance: Babar and Celeste.
* CivilizedAnimal: The citizens of Celesteville.
* DoesNotLikeGuns: All animals, including the rhinos.
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: Perhaps unintentional; Pompadour is a tall, [[AmbiguouslyGay effeminate]], KnowNothingKnowItAll elephant in a yellow/golden outfit, and his companion Trubadour is a [[ShorterMeansSmarter short, smart]], [[TheSpeechless mute]] elephant in a blue outfit. [[Franchise/StarWars Now replace "elephant" with "droid"...]]
** Considering the characters were created back in the 1930's, and Babar's never been all that big in the US, we may safely assume it was accidental.
*** However, these two specific characters were created specifically for the TV show in 1989, and it's safe to think that ''Franchise/StarWars'' was big in Canada and France. Nelvana animated the Boba Fett segment of ''Film/TheStarWarsHolidaySpecial'' and the ''Droids'' and ''Ewoks'' animated series to boot.
* DramaBomb: "The Coin". Babar is held to a promise by a pirate artifact, three shards of a gold medallion, and whoever hands him one of the pieces gets whatever they want from him, [[ArcWords without question, without compromise]]. [[spoiler: One of the shards is obtained by Rataxes, who uses his wish to [[TakeOverTheWorld take over Celesteville]]. It didn't last long thanks to Cornelius, but it was easily one of the darkest episodes in the series, not counting the premiere.]]
* EverythingsBetterWithMonkeys: Zephyr, Babar's best friend.
** Other monkeys or apes appear in certain episodes as well, such as a gorilla princess Babar is supposed to escort at a palace ball in the episode ''Babar's Choice'', and a Film/KingKong-like giant ape in ''Conga the Terrible''.
* EverythingsBetterWithPenguins: Freeo and the other penguins from "Land of Ice".
* EvilSoundsDeep: Rataxes has a rather deep voice.
* FantasticRacism: Rataxes' contempt for all things elephantine is a running gag.
* FiveEpisodePilot: The first five episodes chronicle Babar's dealings with the Hunter and his attempts to bring civilization to the jungle. The status quo achieved at the end of the fifth episode and remains for the rest of the series.
* FullyDressedCartoonAnimal: The majority of the cast.
* GoofyPrintUnderwear: One of Zephyr's pranks in the episode ''Monkey Business'' is replacing the royal flag with Cornelius's underpants.
* GoodParents: Babar and Celeste are very loving and supportive towards their children.
* HappilyMarried: Babar and Celeste.
* HenpeckedHusband: Probably the only person Rataxes is scared of is Lady Rataxes.
* HighClassGlass: Pompadour, and Babar in "City Ways" when he tries to be someone he's not.
* HonorableElephant: The elephants live in TheKingdom, while the rhinoceroses seem to be a military dictatorship ruled by an InsaneAdmiral.
* HyperCompetentSidekick: Basil, who seems to put in more effort in running Rhinoland than his boss Rataxes.
* HyperspaceHolmesHat: In the episode ''The Missing Crown Affair'', Zephyr produces a deerstalker by turning his usual hat inside-out.
* IAmTheNoun: Mademoiselle Soretoza in "The Show Must Go On." - "I am the show."
* IMissMom: Young Babar does this in some of the earlier episodes.
* InevitableWaterfall: Used in "The Land of the Underground" in the final season, when Babar jumps into the rushing river to save one of the mole brothers.
* InsecuritySystem: Rataxes has Basil design and install one of these in the Rhinoland royal pyramid in one episode.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Rataxes.
* KillItWithFire: The Hunter attempts to do this to ''every animal in the forest.'' [[spoiler: He ends up getting [[KarmicDeath killed by]] [[HoistByHisOwnPetard his own fire]] in the end.]]
* TheKingdom: A kingdom of elephants, no less.
* LimitedWardrobe: Most of the cast, though they can often be seen sporting situation-specific costumes in various episodes (raincoats, racing jumpsuits, party costumes, fishing clothes, swimwear). Lampshaded in one episode when Zephyr, temporarily acting as Babar's personal assistant, has ''all'' of Babar's trademark green suits sent to the cleaners, resulting in the King of Celesteville having to give a public address in his bathrobe.
* LionsAndTigersAndHumansOhMy: The Old Lady, Babar's surrogate mother is the [[TokenHuman only human]] in Celesteville, living among {{Civilized Animal}}s.
* MischiefMakingMonkey: Zephyr is often mischievous.
* TheMovie: More or less a remake of cartoon series though.
* NeverSayDie: ZigZagged. In early episodes death is discussed and even shown, but after the construction of Celesteville things have become so safe that the worst thing an assassin can be said to have planned for Babar is kidnapping.
* NotAllowedToGrowUp: Averted somewhat with Babar and Celeste's youngest daughter, Isabelle, who goes from baby to toddler over the course of the series.
* ObstructiveBureaucrat: Pompadour and Basil can both throw literal mountains of paperwork at you on a moments' notice.
* PermissionToSpeakFreely: Babar's subjects occasionally ask this of him. Though Babar is so cool-headed that they could probably just speak their minds without having to ask it.
* PolarBearsAndPenguins: "Land of Ice". Justified in that the titular land is fictional.
* ThePrimaDonna: Madmoiselle Soretoza, the ostrich ballet dancer, from "The Show Must Go On".
* PutOnABus: Arthur, Pompadour, Trubador, Basil, Lady Rataxes, and Victor in the final season. Rataxes only makes a cameo appearance in a story told by Babar.
* RaisedByHumans: Babar was raised by Madame.
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Babar could very well be the type's exemplar. Cornelius is also a good example.
* ReTool: The final season of the original series featured a major shift in direction, sending Babar and his family on a hot-air balloon through a number of {{Magical Land}}s including the Land of Toys and the Land of Mysterious Water, journeying for the great Land of Happiness. To signify this, the opening credits sequence was altered for the only time in the show's history and the opening and closing themes were changed to a remixed version of the theme that had previously been used for the closing credits. This version of the program is technically an {{Anime}} - it was made in part by Ellipse Anime and the episodes were written by Japanese writers.
* RhinoRampage: Happens several times in the earlier episodes.
** There's also a Rhinoland holiday of the same name.
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Babar (and his family). Possibly also Lord Rataxes.
* SameSexTriplets: Averted: Pom and Alexander are boys, Flora is a girl.
* SelfServingMemory: Affects Celeste and Zephyr's accounts of the fenderbender that lands them in court in one episode.
* SherlockHomage: Zephyr in "The Missing Crown Affair" puts on a deerstalker hat and walks around with a magnifying glass when he helps Babar find his stolen crown.
* ShorterMeansSmarter: Basil has often shown being more intelligent than Rataxes, but is a lot shorter than him.
** Trubadour is somewhat smarter than Pompadour, too.
* ShoutOut: Many, to everything from Literature/TheWarOfTheWorlds to ThePhantomOfTheOpera to old [[Creator/AlfredHitchcock Hitchcock]] films.
* TheSpeechless: Trubadour.
* TalkingAnimal: Of course.
* TitleThemeDrop: The opening and closing themes are regularly featured as background music.
* TortureCellar: Rataxes' son Victor implies that the basement dungeon of the family pyramid was like this, until "Mom had it redecorated".
* {{Tsundere}}: Lady Rataxes
* WholeEpisodeFlashback: The episodes of the first season or consist entirely of these, with each being introduced through the device of the adult Babar recalling some incident from his childhood to his children as a bedtime story. Later episodes take place entirely in the present, mostly focusing on the kids (Pom, Alexander and Flora}.
* WithDueRespect: Another phrase that crops up, given the setting
* [[YouKilledMyFather You Killed My Mother]]: What the hunter did to Babar's mother.
* YourSizeMayVary: Correlates with the AnthropomorphicShift. While walking on all fours, the elephants are as big as real elephants should be compared to humans, but after starting to walk on two legs and wear clothes, they become not much bigger than large humans.

!!Tropes featured in the original books include:
* AnthropomorphicShift
* CarnivoreConfusion: In "Babar Comes To America", Babar and his family were shown [[AscendedToCarnivorism eating meat]]. Becomes AccidentallyAccurate in that such behavior was observed in elephants in real life.
* ChristmasEpisode: The book ''Babar et le Père Noël'' (''Babar and Santa Claus''), later made into an animated episode.
* KarmaHoudini: Unlike in the TV series, the hunter who kills Babar's mother receives no comeuppance (and only appears in the first book).
* KissingCousins: In the books, Babar and Celeste were cousins. This aspect was ignored/changed for the TV series' and film, which made them unrelated to one another.
* NoNameGiven: The Old Lady.
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: At least [[OnceAnEpisode once a book.]]
* TokenHuman: The Old Lady is the only human in many of the books. No one remarks on this, ever.


!!Tropes featured in TheMovie include:
* AdaptationalVillainy: Rataxes is far more menacing than in previous incarnations.
* AlternateContinuity: May be the case, considering the ContinuitySnarl below.
* AwardBaitSong: "The Best We Both Can Be."
* CharacterTitle
* ContinuitySnarl: Celesteville (which is not referred to as such in this movie and instead called Elephant Land) seems to already be built on Babar's first day as king here, unlike the books and original TV series.
* EvilOverlord: Lord Rataxes, which is quite surprising considering his character is more complex in the series. He captures elephants from villages, enslaves them, and ultimately tries to conquer their kingdom. (A last-minute ruse from Babar sends him and his rhinos fleeing—quite literally, from his property.)
** "Well, you'll have to excuse me, Your Majesty, BUT I'M OFF TO CRUSH YOUR PUNY KINGDOM TO A PULP!"
* NeverSmileAtACrocodile: Croc appears to play this straight at first but turns out to be a subversion.
* {{Rescue}}

!!Tropes featured in ''Babar: King of the Elephants'' include:
* AgeProgressionSong: "I Can Take Good Care of Me."
* AlternateContinuity: This movie is a retelling of the original books and ignores the TV series and previous movie.
* NeverSmileAtACrocodile: A crocodile attacks Alexander only to be hit by an anchor thrown by [[PapaWolf Babar]].
* SeldomSeenSpecies: TheNarrator is a marabou stork.
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