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Western Animation: Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds
From left to right: Pip, Porthos, Dogtanian, Athos and Aramis.
"One for all and all for one,
Muskehounds are always ready.
One for all and all for one,
Helping everybody.
One for all and all for one,
It's a pretty story.
Sharing everything with fun,
That's the way to be."
—First verse of the opening theme
Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds is a 1981 cartoon based on the novel The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas. The cartoon was created by Spanish animation studio BRB Internacional and co-produced in Japan by Nippon Animation.

This was a remarkably faithful 26-part adaptation (with some inevitable bowdlerisation; for instance, Dogtanian's love interest Juliette, is M. Bonacieux's niece rather than his wife), with one major difference: the principal characters are all dogs, as is most of the supporting cast, with the occasional cat, pig, bear or rabbit.

Young Dogtanian is a child of poor but honest parents, living in a small village in Gascony, scrapping with his puppy pals and dreaming of becoming a Musketeer (the title notwithstanding, they're called "Musketeers" throughout - at least in the English dub). When a messenger arrives from his father's old friend Monsieur de Treville, head of the Musketeers, asking that Dogtanian be sent to Paris to train under him, our hero sets off armed with a sword, a decrepit old horse and an ointment that can heal any wound.

On his journey he falls foul of a mysterious cavalier, the Man with the Black Moustache, and ends up walking to Paris with no money and a broken sword. He arrives at last and falls in with the trio of friends known as the Three Musketeers: The Leader Porthos, portly Athos and romantic Aramis (the book roles of Athos and Porthos are swapped).

Dogtanian's spirit and swordsmanship soon make him an indispensible part of the team, and he settles down to a life of duelling with the Cardinal's Guards, wooing the lovely Juliette and foiling villainous plots against nice-but-weak King Louis and his wife Anne of Austria. His ultimate aim is to prove himself and be accepted into the ranks of the Musketeers.

Anyone who grew up in the UK and Spain in the 1980s will almost certainly remember this show, as it seemed to be on permanent loop along with The Mysterious Cities of Gold and Around the World with Willy Fog. A sequel series was made in 1990 that continued with a new story based on The Vicomte de Bragelonne, although changing "the man in the iron mask" for "the man in the golden muzzle".


Tropes:

  • Absurdly Sharp Blade / Artistic License – Physics / Implausible Fencing Powers: In the intro Dogtanian tosses an apple into the air with the point of his sword and cuts through it eight times while it inexplicably hovers in the air unaffected by gravity and catches it on the point of his sword seemingly intact. He then blows on it and it becomes a shower of over fifty wafer thin slices that float down to the floor. So somehow Dogtanian is able to use a rapier (a type of sword that doesn't even have an edge!) to slice through an apple, while it hovers in the air for no legitmate reason, using a number of cuts insufficient to make that many slices, to a degree of accuracy that permits each slice to be light and thin enough to float down in the air rather than falling to the ground normally, in such a way that the apple retains it's overall structure until he blows on it. Right...
  • Animal Stereotypes: The Three Musketeers' strong loyalty is highlighted by them being dogs. Meanwhile, Milady, a villainous cat, showcases classic feline cunning.
  • Animesque: It was co-produced in Japan after all. It definitely shows in the characters facial expressions.
  • Anthropomorphic Animal Adaptation: Dogtanian is, of course, a dog, as are the Musketeers. Most of the other characters are also dogs, though some are other animals like pigs.
  • Art Evolution: The 1990 sequel series switched from Japanese studio Nippon Animation to Taiwanese studio Wang Film Productions. As such, Wang's animation is much noticeably different than Nippon's in color and design.
  • The Big Guy: Athos is World's Strongest Man so of course he's the muscle on The Team.
  • Cats Are Mean: Milady, a feline, is notably more devious than the other baddies.
  • Compilation Movie: A 90-minute one, called One for All and All for One, was produced, condensing the episodes as well as providing a new script and dub.
  • Defiant Captive: Juliette has her moments, like the one when she gives Rochefort's squire a sound thrashing while tied up in a sack.
  • Dub Name Change:
    • Dogtanian is "D'Artacán" in the original Spanish.
    • Also, the musketeers were called "mosqueperros", a pun using "mosqueteros" ("musketeer" in Spanish) and "perros" ("dogs").
    • The three musketeers had punny names in Spanish too: Antos, Pontos and Amis. The puns come from the original character names and dog breed names.
  • Frothy Mugs of Water: Averted: "they drink their beer and swear they're faithful to their King". Also, Athos is shown visibly drunk on at least one occasion.

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alternative title(s): Dogtanian; Dogtanian And The Three Muskehounds
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