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Anime / Pecola

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Pecola is a CG kids' anime produced by Yomiko Advertising with help from the world-famous Canadian animation studio Nelvana. It is based on a series of children's picture books by Naomi Iwata.

On the shores of Crescent Bay is a town full of Funny Animals rendered in cube shape, appropriately named Cube Town. Living there is Pecola, a young penguin that constantly gets into trouble despite his heart of gold. His friends include a nerdy mouse named Little Chu a.k.a. Chewy, a fox named Rudy, and a female penguin named Coco.

The show ran for 26 episodes with 52 segments lasting 11 minutes each from 2001 to 2002. It aired on TV Tokyo, but many also remember it from its time on Canadian television, where the Nelvana-produced English dub was shown on Teletoon

Not to be confused with a similar sounding hololive Virtual Youtuber with a similar sounding name (Usada Pekora).



  • Actor Allusion: This isn't the first time Austin Dilulio has voiced the child protagonist of a Nelvana cartoon. Not only that, but Pecola's shirt is blue and white-striped, almost exactly like Timothy's normal shirt.
  • Ageless Birthday Episode: Mayor Papazoni has a birthday in "Operation: Papazoni", but his age is never mentioned.
  • Alternative Foreign Theme Song: The English version uses a completely different theme song from the Japanese version.
  • Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: Mayor Papazoni is a pink elephant.
  • Audible Gleam: In "Spring Cleaning", after all of Cube Town is cleaned from Pecola overloading Aunty Yorkshire's washing machine with detergent, Mr. Saruyama comments on how sparkling clean his melons are and holds up a melon, which has an audible sparkle sound accompanying it gleaming.
  • Advertisement:
  • Bait-and-Switch Comment: In "Hurricane Pecola", when Chewy shows concern over Pecola using one of Dr. Chu's canned tornadoes to give him some wind to fly his kite, Pecola responds with "You're right, Chewy. It's not a good idea... it's a great idea!"
  • Beach Episode: Much of "Gazelle's Goof" is set on the beach. Much of the cast tries to enjoy a day at the beach until Gazelle bothers them with his jet-ski.
  • The Big Race: "The Cube Town Tri-Brag-a-Thon" is about the people of Cube Town preparing for the Cube Town Triathlon. As Coco prepares Bongo to race, Rudy keeps bragging about how he could win the first part of the race with a bag of flour strapped to his back, the second part of the race by pulling his friends in the rowboat he has to use, etc., which comes back to bite him when Coco and the others actually challenge him to win the race under those conditions.
  • Binocular Shot: In "Gazelle's Goof", there is a shot shown through Mrs. Bernard's binoculars as she looks around the beach to see how things are going. There are two more when Pecola borrows her binoculars, once when he uses them to look for Golagola and once when he notices Gazelle struggling to stay afloat in the water.
  • Blah, Blah, Blah: In "Pecola's Island", when the townsfolk go to see Officer Kumada coming to shore on a boat serving as the prize for the fishing competition, they ignore Mayor Papazoni's speech, which is rendered as him repeating "blah blah blah".
  • Blush Sticker: Aunty Yorkshire has permanent blush stickers.
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: At the end of "Monster Moth", Pecola uses Rudy's catch-phrase of "That's what I was gonna say!" when Rudy admits he started the entire monster moth story.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: In the episode "Golagola", the theme song plays on the TV when Pecola turns it on.
  • Brought to You by the Letter "S": Pecola's shirt has a big "P" on it.
  • Butt-Monkey: Mr. Saruyama can't seem to go one day without his melons rolling away.
  • By the Lights of Their Eyes: In "Hide n' Go Sleep", the mysterious alligator hides from Pecola by jumping into a mailbox. Right before he lights up the inside and finds Rory the lion is hiding in there for the hide and seek competition, the only thing visible in the mailbox's dark interior is the alligator's eyes.
  • Cat Up a Tree: In "Fire Drill Frenzy", one of the emergencies Pecola sets up for Jabatt and Bashatt is to have Robbie climb up a tree to be rescued. Pecola couldn't find any cats to use.
  • Catchphrase:
    • Pecola has two catch-phrases, "Flappin' flippers!" and "Let's get hopping!"
    • Rudy often responds to what other people say with "That's what I was gonna say!" or some variant of it.
  • Closest Thing We Got: In "Robbie to the Rescue", Robo-Pecola mimics Max von Villainator, the villain of Robbie's video game. In the game, Max steals a sacred flying horse, but there are no flying horses in Cube Town, so when Robo-Pecola notices Mayor Papazoni riding his helicopter, he says "CLOSE ENOUGH." and tries to hijack the helicopter.
  • Cool Car: Gazelle owns a convertible, which he and sometimes Hillary drive around with.
  • Dance Party Ending: Inverted as the opening titles show the entire cast dancing happily.
  • Deserted Island: One episode has Pecola and his friends stranded on one. They're actually still on the mainland, downshore from Crescent Bay.
  • Diegetic Soundtrack Usage:
    • The opening theme is the song that Pecola and his friends perform in "Coco's Concert". Coco tries multiple times throughout the episode to practice for the performance by singing the song.
    • In "Golagola", Pecola turns on some cartoons for Golagola to watch. The television plays the Pecola intro, complete with the theme song playing.
  • Disappeared Dad: This and Missing Mom are played straight. Pecola and Chewy are Raised by Grandparents with no mention of their biological parents. We never see the parents either of Coco, Rudy or Robbie.
  • The Door Slams You: This happens twice to the mysterious alligator in "Hide n' Go Sleep", once when Mr. and Mrs. Bernard slam their bakery's door on him and once when Hillary slams the art museum's door on him. The second time, the alligator is also Squashed Flat, mistaken by Hillary for being a poster that doesn't fit with the museum, and thrown away in a nearby trash can.
  • Eating Machine: In "Pecola's Penguin Special", Robo-Pecola, who helps Pecola to run Cori's cafe while she's taking a break to watch a movie, eats all of Mayor Papazoni's spaghetti for him when he points out he didn't eat spaghetti with motor oil on it.
  • Eccentric Townsfolk: Every member of Cube Town has one quirk or another.
  • Embarrassing Hobby: As shown in the episode "Mysterious Pecola", several of Cube Town's citizens have hobbies and interests that they find to be rather embarrassing:
    • Dr. Chu, a scientist, enjoys comic books even though they're not exactly scientific.
    • Bongo collects toy cars.
    • Gazelle seems to be a fan of Elvis Presley, given the snazzy belt he receives in the mail and his brief imitations of Elvis's voice.
    • Mr. Saruyama loves ballet dances, and is even working on his own ballet called "The Dance of the Melons".
    • Rudy plays with a jump rope, even chanting rhymes as he skips. note 
  • The End of the World as We Know It: In the episode "Constellation Pecola", Dr. Hornbender notices that one of the planets in the solar system has been knocked out of orbit and is headed right towards Cube Town. Cue Pecola spreading Hornbender's warning to the rest of Cube Town, and the townspeople reacting accordingly. However, there is no planet colliding with Cube Town at the end of the episode, as Pecola had rearranged the stars and planets on a rendering of the solar system in Hornbender's lab to look like his face, and the arrangement of the stars only made it look like the planet was knocked out of orbit.
  • Everything's Better with Monkeys: Mr. Saruyama and Bongo, although the latter is technically a gorilla.
  • Everything's Better with Penguins: Pecola, his grandfather, and Coco.
  • Eyes Always Shut: Rory the mailman has eyes like this.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: Steamer will never fix Cactus.
  • Fantastic Fireworks: In "Mayor Muddle", Pecola promises everyone fireworks every day upon becoming the mayor of Cube Town. Among the fireworks he sets off are ones that are shaped like flowers.
  • Fictional Video Game: In "Robbie to the Rescue", Robbie plays a video game called Sir Lancehop vs. Max von Villainator. Pecola has Robo-Pecola play the game as well, which causes him to act like the game's villain, Max von Villainator; to stop him, Pecola has Robbie take on the role of Sir Lancehop.
  • Fingerless Hands: All of the characters have stubby, fingerless hands, or at the most mitten-like hands that don't have visible fingers apart from a visible thumb.
  • Fruit Cart: Mr. Saruyama's melon display, which spills Once an Episode.
    "My melons!" (starts crying)
  • Glad I Thought of It: In "Painting Pecola", Pecola suggests painting the town hall with bright colors so that more people will show up when Mayor Papazoni gives his speeches. Mayor Papazoni likes the idea so much that he refers to it as "his" idea.
  • Glass-Shattering Sound: In "Coco's Concert", Coco's terrible singing repeatedly causes nearby glass objects such as windows, a blender, etc. to shatter.
  • Growling Gut: In "Yeti or Not", Coco and Rudy both mistake Pecola's stomach growling for a roaring yeti.
  • Heavy Sleeper: Mr. Bernard, often to his wife's dismay.
  • Hollywood Tone-Deaf: Coco. One episode has her practice singing for Pecola's band, which was assaulting on the ears of everyone in Cube Town. Towards the end of the episode, she strains her voice, causing her to lose it... but it makes her singing beautifully smooth.
  • Hurt Foot Hop: At the beginning of "Coco's Concert", Coco's terrible singing causes Puggalski to bump his cans, sending one dropping on his foot. He hops around holding his foot as Coco passes by.
  • I Do Not Like Green Eggs and Ham: In "Pecola's Penguin Special", Mr. Lonely spends most of the episode staring in horror at one of Pecola's peanut butter, cream, jellybean, and blueberry sandwiches. Towards the end of the episode, he takes a bite of it and realizes it's actually not that bad.
  • I Don't Think That's Such a Good Idea: In "Hurricane Pecola", Chewy reacts this way to Pecola using one of Dr. Chu's canned tornadoes to help him fly his kite.
    Chewy: I don't think this is a good idea, Pecola.
    Pecola: You're right, Chewy. It's not a good idea... it's a great idea!
  • Impact Silhouette: In "Cool It", while Chewy and Robo-Pecola race Pecola and Coco down a snowy mountain, they hit a big mound of snow. The resulting hole in the mound is shaped like Chewy.
  • Improvised Parachute: In "Double Troubles", Pecola uses a sheet hanging on Aunty Yorkshire's laundry line to catch Robo-Pecola, who then starts to fly around in the sky. When Robo-Pecola runs out of energy, Pecola uses the sheet as a parachute to slow down his landing.
  • In-Series Nickname: Little Chu is often referred to by the nickname Chewy.
  • Interspecies Romance:
    • Hillary the giraffe and Gazelle the, um, gazelle are in love with each other.
    • Pecola (a penguin), Chewy (a mouse), and Rudy (a fox) all have a crush on Steamer (a cat).
  • Invisibility: In one episode, a machine created by Dr. Chu accidentally turns Pecola invisible.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Rudy
  • The Klutz:
    • One of the reasons why Pecola gets into trouble.
    • Jabbatt and Bashatt, the two tortoise brothers and Cube Town's local firefighters, seem to cause more property damage than Pecola when they drive their fire truck.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Rudy. It's evident in his catch phrase.
  • Lighter and Softer: Than Gregory Horror Show, Another series created by Naomi Iwata which does not have Horror in the name for nothing due to it having several dark concepts such as gore. Pecola on the other hand has the exact opposite demographic. strangely both share the same art style.
  • Local Hangout: Cori's Cafe, run by the squirrel Cori. Characters can be seen eating or drinking there and much of "Pecola's Penguin Special" is set there.
  • Look, a Distraction!: How Mayor Papazoni makes everyone asking him questions look away before using a Secret Underground Passage. They fall for it every time.
  • Nap-Inducing Speak: Mayor Papazoni's speeches are that boring.
  • Never Smile at a Crocodile: Played with Al Agator. He has an intimidating appearance with a scarred face, but all he ever does is sneak around Cube Town and take pictures, which goes unexplained.
  • Non-Mammalian Hair: Pecola the penguin has a little tuft of orange hair on his head.
  • Not-So-Forgotten Birthday: In "Operation: Papazoni", everyone rushes to get a Surprise Party ready for Mayor Papazoni's birthday, but he and Pecola think they all forgot.
  • Nothing Exciting Ever Happens Here: The residents of Cube Town would like that. Unfortunately for them, Pecola is in there with them.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: In "Melancholy Pecola", Pecola acting much sadder than usual and abandoning his prankster tendencies is enough to get the other townsfolk genuinely concerned. They think they may have scolded Pecola to the point that it got to him. In reality, he was worried about how pudding comes in packs of six and there are seven days of the week, so he's always one pudding short.
  • Old-Timey Bathing Suit: Pecola, Chewy and Rudy are seen wearing the striped one-piece version in the Beach Episode "Gazelle's Goof".
  • One-Word Title: Pecola is only one word.
  • Paper People: In the English theme song, the first line of spoken lyrics is "Some say the world is round, they do, they do/Or that it's flattened down, but here's some news". The latter part of the line is accompanied by a flattened Pecola falling down next to Chewy, who is reading a newspaper.
  • Personality Swap: One episode has Coco, Robbie, and Bongo switch personalities with one another when Chewy's cleaning vacuum malfunctions.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Pecola wears a blue-and-white striped shirt and Coco wears a pink shirt.
  • The Prankster: Playing practical jokes is one of Pecola's specialities, which understandably gets on the nerves of the other townsfolk quite often.
  • Premiseville: Cube Town is so named because of the characters' heavily cube-based art style.
  • Precocious Crush: Pecola, Rudy, and Chewy, all of whom are children, have a crush on the much older Steamer.
  • Protagonist Title: The title Pecola is also the name of the main character.
  • Pun-Based Title:
    • The episode title "Bot and Switch" is a pun on the phrase "Bait-and-Switch". The episode is about Pecola pretending to be Robo-Pecola to show Chewy who's better.
    • The episode title "Yeti or Not" is a pun on the phrase "ready or not". The episode itself follows Pecola and his friends as they try to find a yeti.
  • Raised by Grandparents: Pecola and Little Chu are both raised by their respective grandfathers.
  • Riddle for the Ages: We never learn anything about Al Agator during the series, like where he's from, why he takes photographs and what is his motive. This is never addressed in the series or by the show's creators. So what's up with him?
  • Robot Me: Robo-Pecola is a robotic version of Pecola made by Dr. Chu.
  • Rump Roast: In "The Cube Town Tri-Brag-a-Thon", Bashatt accidentally trips and falls on a grill, causing his bottom to catch on fire. He winds up speeding around the race course, dragging two of the other racers with him in the process.
  • Scooby-Dooby Doors: Happens in "Mysterious Pecola" when Pecola, the gator and other characters run in and out of doors in pursuit of each other.
  • Seldom-Seen Species: Coco is a gentoo penguin, as shown by the white stripes across the top of her head.
  • Short-Lived Leadership: One episode features the main character participating in an election for becoming the town's mayor. Due to everyone getting the idea to jokingly vote for him, he ends up winning in a landslide and promptly launches his victory fireworks, much to everyone's horror. After about 30 seconds of utter chaos, Pecola announces he's resigning from his position. Why? Because he got a stomachache from eating all the pudding he filled the town hall with.
  • Show Within a Show:
    • In "Good Deeds", Pecola and Rudy try to do as many good deeds around Cube Town as they can so that they can appear on Good Samaritans, a show that Robbie described to them that is about catching people doing good deeds on camera. The show was actually made up by Coco and Robbie so that they could get Pecola and Rudy to help people for a change rather than prank them.
    • There are two that are mentioned in "Miss Lucky's Bloopers". One is a reality show called Big City Life, which has a bunch of interviews with people with big stories and is the highest-rated show in Cube Town, and Bloopers, Pecola's favorite show, which shows a lot of people having their own, well, bloopers.
  • Sickeningly Sweethearts: Hillary and Gazelle are like this during most of "Not Seeing Is Disbelieving".
  • Skyward Scream: In "Robbie to the Rescue", Robo-Pecola screams "NOOOOO!" towards the sky when he discovers that Aunty Yorkshire messed with the Lasertron so that it can only hit the big piles of garbage scattered around Cube Town.
  • Slippery Skid: In "Detective Pecola", Mr. Saruyama slips on the melons that fall and roll on the ground after Pecola tries to help him put them on display.
  • Snot Bubble:
    • In "Fire Drill Frenzy", Bashatt has a snot bubble coming out of his nose when he rests after the weekly fire drill.
    • A snot bubble is seen coming out of a sleeping Mr. Bernard at one point in "Spaceman Pecola".
  • Superheroes Wear Capes: In "Power Pecola", Pecola dons a red cape as part of his superhero costume.
  • Surprise Jump: At the beginning of "Detective Pecola", Pecola surprises Mr. Saruyama by saying hello to him, causing him to jump off-screen for a split-second.
  • Surprise Party: "Operation: Papazoni" has everyone plan a surprise party for Mayor Papazoni's birthday.
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: Hillary and Miss Lucky both have visible lipstick to distinguish them as females.
  • That Cloud Looks Like...: The episode "A Career Day" begins with Pecola, Coco, and Rudy watching the clouds and seeing clouds shaped like Jabatt and Bashatt's fire truck, Officer Kumada's hat, and a cup of pudding. At the end of the same episode, they and the other townsfolk watch the clouds together, and they all see clouds shaped like their heads.
  • Those Two Guys: Jabatt and Bashatt are never seen apart.
  • Toothy Bird:
    • Pecola, his grandfather Pecolius, and Coco are all penguins that have visible teeth.
    • Jabatt and Bashatt are tortoises with teeth.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: The kid characters love pudding, especially Pecola. There's also Mr. Saruyama with melons.
  • Treasure Map: One episode has Pecola and his friends go on a treasure hunt with a map they found. It is the same map that the adults used when they were kids.
  • Tunnel Network: There's one underneath Cube Town. As explained by Mayor Papazoni, generations of Cube Town's mayors have used it to dodge questions.
  • Two Shorts: Every episode comprises two segments that are around 11 minutes long.
  • Unwanted Assistance: Often, any help Pecola tries to give.
  • Valley Girl: Hillary the giraffe has the accent and speech patterns typical of a valley girl.
  • Was Too Hard on Him: In "Melancholy Pecola", when the grownups find Pecola in a state of depression, they fear that it is the result of them scolding him the other day. It wasn't.
  • White Bunny: Robbie the rabbit has white fur.
  • Wingding Eyes:
    • In "Robo-Rocket", Robo-Pecola gets hearts in his eyes upon first seeing Steamer's train, Cactus.
    • In "Lights, Camera, Pecola", Chewy gets hearts in the lenses of his glasses several times as he admires Steamer.
  • Wins by Doing Absolutely Nothing: In "Hide n' Go Sleep", everyone in the hide and seek competition has trouble finding Puggalski, who is sick and can't make it to the competition. He's still declared the winner of the competition anyway.
  • Word Schmord: In "Prince Puggalski", after Pecola, who has been appointed Prince Puggalski's squire, loudly announces to Miss Lucky that Prince Puggalski has returned to his town hall quarters, he apologizes and tries to explain, only to be cut off by Prince Puggalski saying "Sorry schmorry!"
  • World of Funny Animals: All of the characters are anthropomorphic animals with no humans in sight.
  • Wrench Wench: Steamer. She's usually seen fixing her steam engine, Cactus, complete with tools. Hilarity Ensues when Pecola, Chewy and/or Rudy try to help.
  • Writer's Block: In "Ode to Pecola", Pecola tries to cheer up Mr. Lonely so that he can make happier poems. Unfortunately, when Mr. Lonely tries to write a thank-you poem, he gets writer's block, and Pecola tries to help him to get ideas by making him have some fun for a change.
  • The X of Y: The episode title "The Curse of Cube Town" uses this naming convention.
  • You Look Like You've Seen a Ghost: Said by Chewy in "One Lonely Night" after he jokingly asks everyone why they're so scared, which is because they think they actually did see him as a ghost.


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