The Big Garage is a Canadian/British puppet show aimed at preschoolers, which aired from 1995 to 2001 on Family Channel and Global Television Network in Canada, CITV in the UK, and The Learning Channel in the United States.
The setting of this show is Taxitown, where the eponymous Big Garage is. Said garage is home to four taxi cabs, London, Yorkie, Zigzag, and Mimi, who are always under the watchful eye of Pump, a gas pump who serves as their mentor. Close to the Big Garage is Scrapland, a scrapyard serving as the home of an anthropomorphic trash compactor named Scrap who wants to destroy the taxis. Scrap's helper, a tow truck named Rusty, alternates back and forth between being an enemy of the taxis and a friend.
Provides examples of the following tropes:
- A Dog Named "Dog": A gas pump named Pump.
- An Aesop: There's an aesop in every episode. It is a preschooler-aimed show, after all.
- Animate Inanimate Object: Any character that isn't the taxis or Rusty is still a sentient object in some way. Pump, the taxis' mentor, is an anthropomorphic gas pump. Scrap, the enemy of the taxis, is a trash compactor. Other characters include Tooly, a toolbox, the Spanners, the wrenches that Tooly works with, Flash, a traffic light, Stop, an animated stop sign who stars in her own short segments in the show, and various animated tools who have short segments of their own as well.
- Big Bad: Scrap.
- Comically Missing the Point: In the episode "Welcome to the Big Garage", Rusty tries to teach Scrap how to make friends, and he pretends to be a stranger so that Scrap can have someone to practice with. After Rusty tells him that saying "Go away, I'm busy!" in a mean tone is not a good way to make friends, Scrap proceeds to try again... by saying "Go away, I'm busy!" in a nice tone.
- Edutainment Show: Yup.
- Every Episode Ending: Every episode ended with Pump saying that things should quiet down now that the taxis are done with their adventure, followed by Scrap calling for Rusty to come home to Scrapland.
- Gender-Equal Ensemble: The four taxis, consisting of two males (London and Yorkie) and two females (Zigzag and Mimi).
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: In the episode "An Eensy Weensy Lie", London lies about having a flat tire to enter Scrapland and find a taxi sign to give Rusty. Scrap, who believes the lie, actually asks for help from the other taxis to aid London! He doesn't even mind London singing in his presence. Lampshaded by Yorky.Yorky: Huh? You're not gonna stop us?
- Medium Blending: A minor example. There are two 2D animated segments (the Stop the Stop Sign segments and the segments featuring the tools) in what is otherwise a puppet show.
- Minion with an F in Evil: Rusty is supposed to be Scrap's minion, but he tends to visit the Big Garage anyway and acts completely friendly towards the taxis, much to Scrap's dismay.
- Once per Episode: Every episode had a song in it, which would get a reprise near the end of the episode.
- The Place
- Sentient Vehicle: The show's main characters are taxis. There's also Rusty, a tow truck.
- Shout-Out: One episode is named "What About Mimi?", which is also the name of a Canadian cartoon.
- Signing-Off Catchphrase: Or some variation thereof:
- Title Theme Tune: "Time to get those wheels a-rollin'! Big, Big, Big Garage! Time to get those horns a-blowin'! Big, Big, Big Garage!"
- Welcome Episode: "Welcome to the Big Garage" is the episode that introduces Mimi, and by the end of the episode she is firmly established as a member of the Big Garage.
- You Look Like You've Seen a Ghost: Said word-for-word by Yorky in "Boo! Who?" when he notices the other taxis look scared (which actually is because they saw what they assumed to be a ghost).