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Literature / Guess How Much I Love You

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Guess How Much I Love You is a best-selling series of picture books written by Sam McBratney and illustrated by Anita Jeram. The stories focus on the adventures of two hares in a meadow, Little Nutbrown Hare and Big Nutbrown Hare (who is addressed as his being his father in the TV series only). The original book in the series was first published in the mid 90s, and its success led to a number of follow-ups in the late 2000s. The original book has also been released in a number of formats, including pop-up, sweetheart edition and baby book. The stories have also been adapted for children's theatre, as well as animated storybooks.

The books in the series are as follows:

  • Guess How Much I Love You (1994)
  • Colors Everywhere (2008)
  • Let's Play in the Snow (2008)
  • When I'm Big (2008)
  • A Surprise for the Nutbrown Hares (2009)
  • The Adventures of Little Nutbrown Hare (August 2012 - 72 pages, compilation volume featuring four new stories, also released as Here, There and Everywhere)
  • Snow Magic (September 2013)
  • After the Storm (September 2013)
  • Looking for Blue (December 2013)
  • Finding Treasure (December 2013)
  • Will You Be My Friend? (September 29, 2020, described as a sequel to the original book)

In 2011, an Animated Adaptation, subtitled The Adventures of Little Nutbrown Hare was commissioned by SLR Productions and began airing on Disney Junior in a number of non-U.S. markets. The program began airing in the U.S. on March 23, 2012 with the premiere of the 24/7 Disney Junior network. The creators of the program employed a set of complex technical processes to give the program the appearance that a watercolor storybook had been brought to life on-screen. Notably, it's probably one of the few shows on Disney Junior that doesn't seem to be an Edutainment Show by not actively trying to teach anything, not even aesops or pro-social values. A second season of the program was announced in 2015. The second season never aired on Disney Junior and the show eventually left that network entirely, moving instead to Starz and certain streaming services. As of 2022, the series is available on Peacock. Two specials, both from the second season, have also been released - Christmas to the Moon and Back and An Enchanting Easter.

The various incarnations of Guess How Much I Love You features examples of:

  • Black Bead Eyes: For all the characters.
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: In "Taste of Sunset," Little Nutbrown Hare tells Little White Owl a story instead of the usual other way around. Afterwards, Little White Owl asks him if it was a true story and he says it's true that it was his story.
  • Canine Confusion: Little Redwood Fox is seen eating fruits and nuts on some occasions and is shown to be friends with Little Nutbrown Hare even though foxes are carnivorous in real life (their diet also includes hares).
  • Carnivore Confusion: Among Little Nutbrown Hare's friends is Little Redwood Fox and Little White Owl, both of whom's species are predators to his kind in real life.
  • Cassandra Truth: In An Enchanting Easter, none of Little Nutbrown Hare's friends believe that he saw Little White Fawn, not even Little Field Mouse. It's not until the end of the special when they see him for themselves that they finally admit that they were wrong.
  • Character in the Logo: The logo has Little Nutbrown Hare sitting in the bottom right corner.
  • Christmas Episode: "It's Okay / Snow White Hare"
  • Christmas Special: "Christmas to the Moon and Back" was released in 2017 and is a double-length story; one story filling the entire length of one of the show's episodes.
  • Constantly Curious: Especially in the television series, Little Nutbrown Hare is childlike curiosity personified, exploring and enjoying whatever he can find in nature.
  • Cunning Like a Fox: Little Redwood Fox likes to play tricks on her friends.
  • Disembodied Eyebrows: Disembodied whiskers, actually, seen when the characters are shown at certain angles. This was actually first seen in the original picture books and has carried to the TV series.
  • Does Not Know Her Own Strength: Little Redwood Fox goes through this in "Fall Down"; Her over-excited rambunctiousness accidentally ruins the games she and her friends are playing. Eventually, they compromise by playing a three-on-one game of acorn-throwing, her greater strength matched by their numbers.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The theme song is sung by Little Nutbrown Hare, with his father joining in at the end.
  • Expressive Ears: Quite noticeable with both of the Nutbrown Hares, though with Little Nutbrown Hare more so, due to his frequently shifting emotions as a youngster. Sometimes seen with some of the other characters, though it's not nearly as noticeable. In later episodes, Little Field Mouse is sufficiently sensitive to Little Nutbrown Hare's moods and ears that he's able to tell when Little Nutbrown Hare is getting a good idea just by watching his ears.
  • Friendly Tickle Torture: A little common, this is a few examples:
    • Big Nutbrown Hare did this to Little Nutbrown hare at the near end of the episode, "I Promise"
    • Little Nutbrown Hare did this to Little Field Mouse at the episode "Feather your Nest"
  • Full-Name Basis: Little Nutbrown Hare and Big Nutbrown Hare are father and son (at least in the TV series), but always refer to each other by their full names, which feels more than a little odd. In the TV series, most of the other characters are referred to by full names as well.
  • Insert Song: Happens in two specials, Christmas to the Moon and Back and An Enchanting Easter.
  • Instantly Proven Wrong: In "The Lucky Egg," Bluebird has two eggs of her own and agrees to adopt another, much larger egg that Little Nutbrown Hare and Little Field Mouse found that they call "the lucky egg." All three of them hatch at the same time. One day, Little Nutbrown Hare and Little Field Mouse take Big Nutbrown Hare to see the chicks. The proudly praise the bluebird chicks for their singing, but say that the lucky chick doesn't sing, that he's very quiet. In response to this, the lucky chick lets out a big, loud caw.
    Little Field Mouse: And full of surprises!
  • It's Always Spring: A conscious effort has been made to avert this in the TV series. The program is said to have been designed as a sort of romp through the seasons and each story finds the characters exploring the delights of a different one.
  • Mathematician's Answer: Whenever Little White Owl is asked if a story of hers is true, she replies "It is true that it is my story."
  • Missing Mom: It's a good thing Little and Big Nutbrown Hares' love for each other is so big, because Mom is nowhere to be seen. Given the young age group the series is targeted at, no attempt is made to explain this.
  • Mood Whiplash: As already mentioned, there's a lot of shifting emotions when it comes to Little Nutbrown Hare.
  • Once an Episode: "Guess how much I love you?"
  • Running Gag: One in the Christmas Special, Christmas to the Moon and Back, Little Brown Bear kept on squishing Little Field Mouse.
  • Same Language Dub: The first season aired on Disney Junior in the United States with U.S. English voices. When the show moved to Starz for the second season, they didn't bother, instead keeping the original British voices. note 
  • Scenery Porn: The TV series is lush with colors and beautiful backgrounds.
  • Sleepyhead: Big Nutbrown Hare is very fond of his afternoon nap, though he likes to claim that he's actually doing deep thinking. Despite this, he tends to be a good sport about it if Little Nutbrown Hare or Little Field Mouse wake him up, wanting to show him something.
  • Slice of Life: Very much so, particularly the TV series.
  • The Storyteller: Little White Owl.
  • That Cloud Looks Like...: In "Summer Days," Big Nutbrown Hare has Little Nutbrown Hare and Little Field Mouse lie down on their backs with him in a meadow when they're looking for something to do. At first, they're not sure of the point of it, as they want to get up and play, but then he has them do this.
  • Third-Person Person: Little Brown Bear is this in "Christmas to the Moon and Back." He also has the habit of referring to other characters in the third person instead of using pronouns.
  • Title Drop: Once an Episode, someone says "Guess how much I love you?"
  • Title Theme Tune: In the U.K. version of the TV series, performed by Little Nutbrown Hare only, but in the U.S. version, Big Nutbrown Hare joins for some of the song as well. An official video of the U.K. version can be found here.
  • Two-Timer Date: Little Nutbrown Hare tries to pull this in "The Promise" after he accidentally promises both Little Redwood Fox and Little Field Mouse after lunch. He's not very good at it, however, and quickly gets caught. Neither of his friends is mad at him, though, and they find a way to all play together, combining their talents, since they're all friends with each other anyway.
  • Vegetarian Carnivore: On several occasions, Little Redwood Fox is seen eating fruits and nuts.


Video Example(s):


They Laughed at Me

Little Nutbrown Hare's friends all laugh after he falls skating. They think it's funny and he claims to agree, but you can tell by his ears that he doesn't really think so. But they perk back up after his father promises to help him.

How well does it match the trope?

4.83 (6 votes)

Example of:

Main / ExpressiveEars

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