From left to right: Duck, Emily, Little Bear, Owl, Cat, Hen, Mother Bear, Father Bear
Little Bear, a series of books written by Elsie Minarik and a 65-Episode Cartoon adaptation by Nelvana. It follows the stories of a...well, little bear, his friends Hen, Owl, Cat, Duck, and Emily, who's human. Later, they are joined by Mitzi, a monkey. The series was created by Else Minarik and the books were illustrated by Maurice Sendak. It currently runs in syndication on Nick Jr..In Christmas of 2000, a film based on the animated series was released in theaters, and later to video in 2001. It revolves around Little Bear meeting a mysterious bear around his age named Cub, and trying to reunite him with his parents upon learning that they had been separated.
Bittersweet Ending: Season 1's "Your Friend, Little Bear" ends with Emily leaving, but Little Bear writing to her.
Although sources vary on whether it or "Falling Leaves" is the last segment of the episode, or even if it's the last episode of the season.
Brutal Honesty: The close-captioning on "Little Bear's Band". It describes their music as being "off key and offbeat", later says "they resume playing, still awful", although it does say they play well at the end.
Carnivore Confusion: Little Bear is a bear, but is friends with a cat, a hen and a duck, all of which can be prey animals to a bear. The only meat he is seen eating is fish, and this is mostly because No Cartoon Fish is in appliance.
There are also Cat and Owl. They are said to hunt at night and when Little Bear meats a mouse, he knows that he has to hide it from them.
Food Porn: Considering how far back the show is, one of the things that the characters do for pleasure is eating. With titles like "Father's Flying Flapjacks", "Applesauce", and "Little Bear's Sweet Tooth", you can tell it's pretty much a trademark of the show.
Averted in "Little Bear and the Cupcakes". See Lethal Chef.
Friendly Tickle Torture: Occurs with startling frequency, with the Little Bear almost always involved as either the tickler or ticklee. All the characters shown in the opening end up getting tickled at least once.
The Movie is even more confusing. For one Little Bear is shown drinking from a river like a regular bear, right after putting a carton down. A Mountain Lion appears, and he is shown in a manner that emphasizes the fact he's a predator.
In Case You Forgot Who Wrote It: The TV show was initially advertised as "Maurice Sendak's Little Bear." However, this is peculiar, as Maurice Sendak only illustrated the Little Bear books—Else Minarik was the author.
Lethal Chef: In the episode where Little Bear and Emily make cupcakes, they go so far as to put a fish in the batter. And that's the least of those cupcakes' problems...
No Cartoon Fish: Fish are essentially the only animals that don't talk, or at least show some level of sapience. One episode even had a talking moth. Probably a good thing, as two of the primary cast are animals well-known for eating fish...
There's even a scene where we see Owl grab a fish, which was clearly alive and jumping, in his beak and subsequently eating it.
No Name Given: All of the characters are named after what they are, except Tutu the Dog, Mitzi the Monkey and Nofeet the Snake.
Old-Timey Bathing Suit: Surprisingly averted. In one episode where Emily was shown in a bathing suit during a swimming scene, she wore a swimsuit that wouldn't look out of place in the time the series was made (the 1990s) but definitely would during the time the series is set (1910s or 1920s).
One Mario Limit: Averted. Despite the great popularity of this series, a number of other authors have released picture books featuring a main character named simply "Little Bear."
Sixth Ranger: While Little Bear met Emily during the series, she was introduced in the first season, so it's debatable whether or not she counts. However, Nofeet the snake and Mitzi the monkey definitely do.