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Series / Käpt'n Blaubär

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Käpt'n Blaubär (Captain Bluebear) is a hybrid puppet/animated show created by Walter Moers as a recurring segment for the German Edutainment Show Die Sendung mit der Maus. It stars a blue bear who is a retired seaman, living on his beached ship with his three grandchildren (one green, one yellow, one pink) and his old first mate Hein Blöd.

Every episode starts with a puppet sequence, during which the Captain's grandchildren usually discover a strange object on the cramped ship which they start to ask their grandfather about. When he starts telling the story behind the object, his tale is shown in an animated sequence, often switching back to a puppet sequence when the grandchildren add their opinion on the tale. Almost every episode starts with a ridiculous premise about transporting a cargo of Visual Puns, and it usually gets crazier with every passing moment. Usually an episode ends with the grandchildren accusing their grandfather of just having made everything up.


Kapt'n Blaubär has been adapted into other media; in 1999 he starred in Walter Moers' first novel of Zamonia, which told of his youth (and which was later on adapted into a stage musical, and the same year there was also a full-length animated movie that focused on the present-day Blaubär and his fight against his archnemesis, Prof. Dr. Feinfinger.

The Captain Bluebear TV series provides examples of:

  • Amazing Technicolour Wildlife: The Captain himself and his three grandkids.
  • Barefoot Cartoon Animal
  • Been There, Shaped History: The Captain, constantly. Wheter it's true or a lie, or up to the viewers interpretation, varies.
  • Breakout Character/Spin-Off: Käpt'n Blaubär started as a segment in Die Sendung mit der Maus, but got so immensely popular that he later got his own show.
  • Captain Colorbeard: Or Captain Color Bear, in this case.
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  • Christmas Miracle: On the Christmas Episode, appropriately enough. Even though everything that could go wrong with the preparations for the celebration all turns out right in the end.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Hein Blöd. Hein is of course technically a given name in German, but... let's just say his full name could plausibly be translated as Hey, Stupid.
  • Cool Boat: Käpt'n Blaubär's home is a ship sitting on a cliff above the sea.note  While not spectacular by itself note , it's crammed up to the deck with weird stuff.
  • A Day in the Limelight: In one episode, Hein Blöd tells a story instead of starring in one told by the captain.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Hein calls him Käpt'n while the little bears call him Opa ("grampa").
  • Father Neptune: Käpt'n Blaubär is of course one.
  • Finishing Each Other's Sentences: The three grandkid bears spoke like this in the classic sketches. In newer stories, this is largely absent.
  • Glass-Shattering Sound: Pah! The Käpt'n shatters whole America (he was in danger of colliding with the cliffs in a storm) by singing the high Z. Thus creating the Panama canal.
    • Also the ping-uins, formerly pong-uins. (The Captain taught them to break the ice in a very harsh winter.)
  • Gone Horribly Right: Sometimes the little bears try to prove their grandfather wrong by trying out the supposed magical devices he found on his travels. Quite often it turns out they really do work as claimed. In other episodes, things just so happen to prove that the Captain hasn't been lying after all.
  • Half-Identical Twins: Triplets, as you can see on the photo. One guess which one is the girl.
  • Indy Ploy: The little bears often point out severe flaws in the captain's stories, which he then resolves by just making stuff up as he goes. Though the way the stories end (and are concluded in the puppet segments) often make it seem that he wasn't prevaricating after all.
  • "Just So" Story: Some of his stories.
  • Meaningful Name: Hein Blöd. Blöd is german for stupid.
  • Monster Clown: Subverted. The Monster Clowns were just part of a giant lie to scare the little bears out of their free circus tickets.
  • The Münchausen: The Captain.
    • There was an episode where he claimed he had a lying competition against the real Baron Münchhausen... and won.
      • And from the first Zamonia novel, we learn that in his youth he had been an accomplished and celebrated Congladiator.
  • No Name Given: Käpt'n Blaubär's name is never given, and his grandchildren are always identified as die Bärchen (the little bears).
  • Plant Person: Karin, see image above. She's the one with the petals.
  • Poirot Speak: Both the captain and Hein Blöd speak with a heavy north German accent, but use Standard German vocabulary unless the meaning of a word is obvious by context — regional accents in Germany can be incomprehensible to people from other parts of the country and often can vary considerably in their vocabulary.
  • Raised by Grandparents: The little bears arrive at the ship in the first episode, but are never shown to leave again, even temporarily. It's unclear whether they are living permanently with their grandfather or are just regularly staying over. No other relatives are ever mentioned.
  • Reality Warper: The captain can lie things into existence, as the episode with the Oktoputz ("Octoclean") clearly proves - he is severely nonplussed when *he* gets a gratis tentacled cleaning.
  • Refuge in Audacity
  • Retired Badass: The captain, obviously.
  • Snark-to-Snark Combat: The little bears always bitch about the Captain's stories. Sometimes, he fires back.
  • Stealth Pun: The Captain is a bear and his stupid first mate a rat. note 
  • Tall Tale: The Captain's stories ... or are they?
  • Visual Pun: Both the cargo and the destination of the captain's voyages are most often visual puns.
  • You Didn't Ask: Käptn Blaubär is hopelessly behind modern times. When he catches a computer virus (resulting in a Humiliation Conga with (paper!) spam, furniture getting deleted and himself turning into a badly animated CGI version), the tech-savvy Bärchen enjoy it before giving him the cleanup advices and saying these words.