About Jack a Nory,
And now my story's begun,
I'll tell you another,
Of Jack and his brother,
And now my story is done."
Long-running BBC show later moved to CBBC, in which a famous person would read a well-known children's book, typically in 15-minute chunks over the course of a week. The stories ranged widely, with Fairy Tales, Roald Dahl, Winnie-the-Pooh, The Land Of Green Ginger and The Moomins amongst many others. The storyteller would be in a location reflecting the story, and illustrations would appear.
The show was relaunched in 2007, with John Sessions reading Muddle Earth and Sir Ben Kingsley reading The Magician of Samarkand. These had more of a dramatisation aspect to them than the originals, especially Muddle Earth. This did not lead to a further season, although Jackanory Junior was launched, reading picture books on CBeebies.
This show contains examples of:
- Don't Try This at Home: Unfortunately, not used during Rik Mayall's famous reading of George's Marvellous Medicine, during which he acted out mixing up the famous medicine. There were some complaints after several kids copied Mayall and filled their parents' baths with paint, floor polish and various other household chemicals.
- Long Runner: The first series lasted from 1965 to 1996. That's longer than Doctor Who!
- Lemony Narrator: One or two of the readers piled on the mannerisms a bit. Kenneth Williams did a good job on, for example, The Land Of Green Ginger (which is written that way) and other books.
- The Narrator: The point of the format.
- Poorly Disguised Pilot: The relaunch didn't lead to Jackanory continuing, but it did lead to an Animated Adaptation of Muddle Earth.
- Spin-Off: Jackanory Junior; Jackanory Playhouse, a series of half-hour plays.
- Transatlantic Equivalent: