Britain's answer to Eek! The Cat
. Noddy's Toyland Adventures
is a toymation
cartoon first broadcast on The BBC
in 1992, and ended in 2001. In case you don't know who Noddy was, then it will be explained. Noddy was originally seen for the first time in a series of books written by Enid Blyton
, The Enchanted Wood
, The Magic Faraway Tree
, The Wishing Chair
) between 1950 and 1962. Also, this was not the first time Noddy's adventures had been adapted for television - at least three other stop-motion series had preceded it, the first airing all the way back in the mid-1950s.
The show and the books follow the adventures of Noddy, a little wooden doll who wears a Nice Hat
and drives a little yellow car that goes Putt-Putt
. He somewhat echoes Mario
, as does his clothing. He lives next door to a Trickster Archetype
little teddy bear called Master Tubby Bear, who lives with Mr. and Mrs. Tubby Bear, and, of course, Noddy's girlfriend, Tessie Bear! Noddy's best friend besides her is Big Ears, who is Exactly What It Says on the Tin
. He's got big ears. The Toyland policeman is called Mr. Plod, who most of the time asks Noddy whether he can be Noddy's Special Constable.
You'd think there's No Antagonist
in the cartoon, would you? Well, think again! There are twin goblins, who like to cause mischief around Toyland by stealing ... but they never do anything that would ordinarily kill a person
, they just ruin Noddy's life for whatever reason! At the end of the episode, they get a punishment behind bars, which they deserve!
The series was also broadcast on PBS Kids
and Toon Disney
in America, with the cartoon getting sandwiched by a live action show that takes place in a toy store known as the Noddy shop. The characters got American voices, except Noddy and the Skittles. Although this show was broadcast in America, the VHS releases still made it to Britain.
In 2001, a CGI
spinoff- Make Way For Noddy
- premiered. It was a UK-Canada co-production and the producer was Sabella-Dern. As a result, the North American dub of the CGI show used the talents of The Ocean Group
. In the US, a short segment, Say It With Noddy
, was pinned on to the show to teach Spanish. In 2011, a second CGI revival, Noddy In Toyland
premiered, with an even Lighter and Softer
premise and some of the characters, notably Tessie Bear and the goblins, given a redesign.
This show contains the following tropes:
- Absentee Actor: Some characters get the shaft in Make Way For Noddy and even more in Noddy In Toyland. Miss Pink Cat also does not appear in the video games.
- Accidental Hero: In the Christmas Episode, the Goblins set traps for Santa to ruin Christmas. However Noddy, in a rush to meet him in person, falls into all of them instead, allowing Santa to make it through. Tessie and Dinah, interpreting this as Noddy pulling multiple Heroic Sacrifices to protect Santa, are sure to inform him what happened, leading to Noddy meeting him at last.
- Adaptational Heroism: Miss Pink Cat, while still occasionally retaining her pompous side, is noticeably nicer in Make Way For Noddy acting as the owner of Toyland's Local Hangout. Similarly Tubby is less obnoxious and spoiled, usually only acting up in his limelight episodes.
- Annoying Younger Sibling: Taken to the extreme with Master Tubby Bear, who likes to sometimes cause trouble.
- Bratty Half-Pint: Master Tubby Bear.
- Catch Phrase:
- Noddy: That's very naughty!
- Big Ears: Oh my goodness!
- Master Tubby Bear has the same Catch Phrase as Norman Price from Fireman Sam, another BBC cartoon. Aw mam!
- Mrs. Tubby Bear: Now, Master Tubby Bear, X may Y, but Z.
- Mr. Wobbly Man: Do be careful, Noddy!
- Mr. Plod: HALT IN THE NAME OF PLOD! The name of Plod was partly because most police officers say "HALT IN THE NAME OF THE LAW", but he keeps getting it all muddled up!
- Gobbo: Such mischief!!!
- Various characters: Oh dear!
- Cats Are Mean: Miss Pink Cat could get pretty bossy sometimes, but she's otherwise a nice cat.
- Character Focus: Toyland Adventures gave prominent use to the supporting cast, but the stories still focused mainly on Noddy. Make Way For Noddy uses A Day in the Limelight more often, with more episodes Noddy is a supporting character to another's dilemma.
- Cloudcuckoolander: Mr. Wobbly Man.
- Cool Old Guy: Big Ears.
- Cultural Translation: In France, the cartoon was called "Les Aventures de Oui-Oui" (literally meaning The Adventures of Noddy), whilst the Japanese version is called "Konichiwa Noddy". (literally meaning Hello Noddy, by analogy with Hello Kitty).
- The Cutie: Tessie Bear.
- Ditzy Genius: Big Ears is a bit befuddled, but still probably the smartest person in Toyland.
- Expy: What does Noddy look like? Pajama Sam or Super Mario? Your choice.
- Everybody Laughs Ending: Done in some episodes. It's a cartoon, after all.
- Everything Sounds Sexier in French: Miss Pink Cat speaks with a French accent in the British dub, but she is voiced by the girl who does all the voices for the females, as well as Noddy.
- French Jerk: Miss Pink Cat at her worst can be rude, uptight and bossy. She's probably more consistently a French Jerk with a Heart of Gold however.
- Friendly Enemy: The goblins have the odd kinder moment.
- Furry Confusion: Quite noticably. Bumpy Dog acts like a real dog, but what does Miss Pink Cat (among other animal characters in the show) act like? A human!
- The Grinch: Miss Pink Cat, Sammy Sailor and the goblins all act as this in the Christmas Special. Santa gets round all of them by the end of the episode.
- The Hyena: Sly and Gobbo.
- Inspector Javert: Some episodes have Mr Plod bothering Noddy after circumstances lead him to believe he is up to mischief.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Mr Plod and Miss Pink Cat are rather self important and quick to turn on Noddy, but well meaning otherwise. Tubby has odd moments of this too.
- Karma Houdini: Averted. The goblins will always get locked up near the end, and they deserve their punishment after the credits roll.
- Played straight in the opening to Make Way For Noddy, where the two are shown escaping out of jail and hiding at Noddy's party, leaving wonder as to how much punishment they exactly go through anyway.
- Keep Circulating the Tapes: While the CGI series have got some fair exposure on DVD, you'll be lucky to find much of Toyland Adventures (though most of the series was released on VHS). And don't even bother looking for the 50s-70s shows.
- Licensed Game: The first ever Noddy video games were released on the Amiga (but not on the SNES, unfortunately) in Britian in 1992 and 1993. Then in 1997, another videogame, called the Magic of Toytown was released, and there was a free Living Books clone inside. It was compatible with Windows 95, 98 and ME, but not with XP. In 1999, there was yet another video game based on the cartoon, called Playtime in Toyland (Let's Get Ready for School in Britian) which was compatible with Windows XP. There was a Crowning Moment of Funny in one game, when Master Tubby Bear would sometimes draw funny pictures to annoy Noddy. Both games use Macromedia Director. Also in 1999, there was a videogame for the PlayStation, Noddy's Magic Adventure, where Sly and Gobbo stole a magician's wand and decided to use it to cause trouble around Toyland. The game was released first in the United Kingdom, but it did get a release in France as well. There was a game for the Game Boy Color in the same year, called Noddy and the Birthday Party, where Noddy had to prepare for Big Ear's birthday in time.
- Lighter and Softer/Denser and Wackier: Make Way For Noddy. Not that the books or Toyland Adventures remotely neared dark or mature material themselves, but the CGI series clearly aims more to be an Edutainment Show for an even younger audience.
- Living Toys: A bigger offender than Toy Story.
- The Kiddie Ride: Several models, all of them are of Noddy's yellow car (the latest one, a carousel, still has the yellow car as one of the figures for kids to ride in). Evidently, the ride license changed hands several times from Bell Fruit to Amutec to OMC before finally resting in the hands of RG Mitchells, who promptly got bought over by Jolly Roger Rides. It can be said that the Noddy rides' popularity are only second to that of Postman Pat
- Meaningful Name: We dare you to find a character who doesn't live up to his or her name!
- Mouthy Kid: Noddy has nothing against starting arguments against adults or even the local bob (granted most of the time, they really aren't much more mature than he is).
- Nice Girl: Tessie Bear.
- Nice Hat
- Not-So-Harmless Villain: Sly and Gobbo are usually just thieves and troublemakers. In the Villain Episode "The Goblin's Stopwatch" however, they happen upon a magic stopwatch and use it to freeze the whole of Toyland (par Noddy).
- Our Goblins Are Different: Sly and Gobbo act more like gremlins than goblins.
- Overtook the Series: The 1975 series consisted of adaptations of the original novels. Toyland Adventures had some looser takes on some of the remaining stories of the 24 novel series, though naturally the 52 episode series soon went in it's own direction. Make Way For Noddy and Noddy In Toyland consist almost entirely of original stories.
- Recycled Script: Both Toyland Adventures and Make Way For Noddy have a loose adaptation of the novel story Noddy and Tessie Bear (Noddy loses Tessie Bear's farm goods on his runaway kite, which "rains" on the rest of Toyland).
- Southern Belle: Miss Pink Cat in the US dub.
- Those Two Bad Guys: Sly and Gobbo.
- Throw the Dog a Bone: Everyone, even the goblins, gets a Happy Ending in the Christmas Episode. This tradition is repeated in the CGI series.
- Toy Time: An example not from a video game, although the series did have video games.
- Trickster Archetype: Master Tubby Bear.
- Undying Loyalty: At least two episodes involve Noddy being falsely accused for the loss of someone's belongings. Only Big Ears and Tessie try to prove him innocent.
- Women Are Wiser: Downplayed example. Tessie Bear is more sensitive and tactful than Noddy at times, but has moments she is just as naive and careless. Most of the other females are similar. Big Ears is the most consistent Reasonable Authority Figure, and even he can be fallible.