Follow TV Tropes


Series / The Noddy Shop

Go To
The toy cast of the show.

"Once upon a time, there was a magical shop in a town called Littleton Falls. When I was a boy, I knew it was magic because things moved on the shelves when no one was looking. Then I grew up and went to sea and sailed around the world, but I always knew I'd come back and run this shop someday. Oh, I forgot to tell you. My name is Noah Tomten, and this is the Noddy Shop!"
—Noah's opening narration in the first episode.

The Noddy Shop note  is a Canadian Kid Com created by Rick Siggelkow that was the Spiritual Successor to Shining Time Station.

The show centered on three kids, Kate; her brother, Truman; and their friend, DJ, who visit a toy shop (the titular Noddy Shop) every day after school while their parents were at work, where they would visit with Noah, the shop's owner and Kate and Truman's grandfather. But the shop isn't any ordinary toy store — the residents of the toy store can come to life and talk to them.

One day, the kids discover a mysterious box and a key, which holds mischievous goblins that play tricks on people, as well as a map of an imaginary land and two dolls that turn out to be Noddy and Big Ears, which the kids decide to tell stories with that relate to real-life situations the kids face (which are represented by episodes of Noddy's Toyland Adventures). After the story had been told, the toys and Johnny would sing a song about the moral of the story to the kids. In some episodes, they would sing two songs, with the second one usually being a retelling of a popular story set to music.

The Noddy Shop contains examples of:

  • Alliterative Name: Most of the toys with two-part names are in this format except for Bonita Flamingo, the Dancing Ladies, Island Princess, Granny Duck and Johnny Crawfish.
  • Amateur Film-Making Plot: "Lights, Camera, Chaos" is about the children filming their own mystery movie called The Case Of The Missing Necklace.
  • Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better: The song in the episode "The Fish Story" is called "I Can Do Better Than You".
  • April Fools' Plot: One of the episodes took place on April Fool's Day.
  • Artistic License – Biology: The plot of "Jack Frost Is Coming To Town" revolves around Truman refusing to wear a new scarf Aunt Agatha has knitted him to keep warm. As a consequence, he catches a cold. The fact that coldness causes people to catch colds is a myth, as viruses are what actually cause them.
  • Baseball Episode: "Slugger". Two Little League baseball players refuse to let Truman play with them because he's too small. With Kate and D.J. backing him up, they challenge the Little Leaguers to a game. But the circumstances change when a ball possessed with goblin magic comes into play.
  • Bat Deduction: In "The Fish Story", Aunt Agatha believes that the Goblins are responsible for Kate's ring disappearing without thinking of other ways that it could have gone missing, and then dresses up as a cat.
  • Berserk Button:
    • For the toys, setting the goblins free from the box they were trapped in will make them panic.
    • For that matter Aunt Agatha hates seeing the goblins, which she believes are rodents.
  • Big Blackout:
    • The episode "Thunder and Lightning" takes place during one that is caused by a thunderstorm.
    • This is also the fear of the Crybabies.
  • Big Storm Episode: In "Thunder and Lighting" a thunderstorm hits the town and the kids have to deal with facing their fears after the storm knocks out the power.
  • Birthday Episode: In "The Birthday Party" the kids are throwing a party for Noah on his birthday but are hung up on what to give him for presents.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Johnny Crawfish often tells jokes to the viewers at home, and sometimes asks them other questions as well (like "Hmmm, give up?" when telling the audience a joke about Sherman and Rusty.)
  • Camping Episode: "Twinkle Twinkle Little Goblins" is about the kids having a camp out behind the shop, but they find it sabotaged by the goblins.
  • Captain Obvious: In "The Magic Key", Kate names one of the dolls in the box Big Ears because of his big ears.
  • Character of the Day:
    • Sometimes, the writers will throw in a character that would interact with the toy characters and Johnny in the shop who would only show up once (occasionally twice in some cases, like Disrupto and Bunkey) as a story element. A few examples of these include Jack Frost, The Sandman, Disrupto the robot, Angelina and Johnny Crawfish's new tankmate.
    • There were also human characters of the day as well. These include Jack Fable, Wally the Wanderer, Sam, Julie, the bullies in Big Bullies, Robbie MacRhino, Ed Caruso and Rodney Styx.
  • Christmas Episode: "Anything Can Happen At Christmas".
  • Clip Show: "Sing Yourself To Sleep", which was a collection of songs previously sung during the course of the series.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: Warloworth's punishment for playing tricks on the other toys is to take care of the Crybabies.
  • Cut Short: Happened to the British reversion of the show, Noddy In Toyland, that aired outside North America. The series ended at "Noah's Leaving", an episode that implied that there was still more to come, since Noah reconsiders his decision to close NODDY's at the end of the episode. This is likely because in the season that follows, Noddy frequently talks to Truman, and the creators would have to redub all of his lines over with Susan Sheridan's voice. The season did air dubbed in non-English speaking countries, though.
  • Demographically Inappropriate Humor: This show had many things that probably wouldn't fly on any other PBS Kids show aimed at preschoolers:
    • One of the characters, Stein, is a beer mug.
    • The song "The Day The Goblins Got Away" contains this verse:
    Don't give them any ideas!
    • The show has plenty of scenes in which the puppet characters (and on occasion the humans) quote or referencing things adults would only get, like Sudden Impact or Saturday Night Live.
    • The episode "Skunked" has Whiny and Whimper mistaking the skunk smell for one of them soiling their diaper, which could be considered this because PBS Kids shows, especially those for preschoolers, never tend to use Potty Humor for the purpose of a joke. note 
    • One character, Gertie Gator, has large breasts.
    • Johnny Crawfish's song "Special" has sexual innuendo (like saying that he's been "around the block", implying that he has lots of sex). It also says the word "hell". The music video was made to market the show to international broadcasters and wasn't for the public to see.
    • The series finale has a man trying to turn NODDY's into a cigar store. You read that right, mentions of smoking in a show for toddlers.
  • Diaper Check: In "Skunked", Whiny and Whimper ask each other if they've had accidents after smelling the skunk smell.
  • Dub Name Change: The Portugese and Hebrew dubs change Truman's name to Tomás and Ruby respectively.
  • Dub Species Change: The Portuguese dub changes the trolls into gnomes.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • The official website posted song lyrics from the various episodes, some of which referred to characters by their original names.
    • The most common stock artwork for Johnny Crawfish depicts him with a Tooth Strip, compared to his teeth looking more realistic in the actual show itself.
  • Educational Song: Most of the songs in the show are intended to get the moral of the episode across to the viewers and characters. For example, in "Mixed-Up Magic", Gertie and Johnny sing about cleaning up, in "Hooray For The Kids", the characters sing about how nice it is to have friends and in "It's About Time", Gertie sings a song about how to read a clock. There are some episodes where the song isn't educational at all and is instead related to the plot, like both of the songs sung in "Skunked".
  • Eek, a Mouse!!: In this show, this is used as a running gag for Aunt Agatha. The episode "The Fish Story" took this up to eleven by having her dress as a cat to find some mice who she thought took a ring belonging to Kate's mom.
  • Even the Subtitler Is Stumped: On the closed captioning used for PBS airings of the show, every single one of Stein's lines would be rendered as "Yeah", except for his "¡Hasta la vista, burrito!" line in "Recipe for Learning".
  • Expository Theme Tune: Quoted above.
  • Extra-Long Episode: "Anything Can Happen At Christmas" was an hour-long as opposed to the 28 minutes a normal episode runs for.
  • Fear of Thunder: Truman has this in the episode "Thunder and Lightning".
  • Framing Device: During the middle of each episode, Kate would tell Truman and DJ Noddy stories in the Book Nook, which were represented by episodes of Noddy's Toyland Adventures.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: "Let's Go Fly A Kite" has the kids switching places with the adults and vice versa.
  • Fun with Acronyms: The shop's name stands for "Notions, Oddities, Doodads and Delights of Yesterday".
  • Furniture Assembly Gag: In episode "Following Directions", the goblins have trouble assembling their new grill because they haven't read the directions.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: In music video "Special" (which was made for an investor in the series and was not meant for public consumption), Johnny Crawfish sings lyrics that suggest Intercourse with You and also uses the word "hell". The show itself is rated TV-Y, which usually doesn't allow these sorts of things.
  • Gift-Giving Gaffe: In "Telling The Whole Truth", Aunt Agatha's friend Charlene Von Pickings comes into the shop because she's been told that there are many good things to buy her 5-year-old nephew who she is not at all close to. Kate and DJ, who are watching the store for Noah, suggest a variety of fun, adorable and entertaining looking toys, but she doesn't think any of them look right, until she sees an antique clock on the wall.
  • Gratuitous Foreign Language: Bonita Flamingo puts Spanish in her sentences, and the pigs speak French.
  • Halloween Episode: "We All Say Boo" takes place on Halloween night and is about the characters having a Halloween party at the shop.
  • Happy Birthday to You!: The song "Partytime" from "The Birthday Party" is a strange example of this trope. Although it's a song about Noah's birthday, it's more about how giving to people is better than receiving and only says "Happy Birthday" once.
  • Heroic Dog: Planet Pup believes he is a superhero and tries to solve most of the problems at the shop.
  • Honesty Aesop: In the episode "Telling The Whole Truth" sees Kate, DJ and Warloworth Q. Weasel facing dilemmas where they hide mistakes they made. Kate and DJ accidentally break a clock they were trying to sell Charlene Von Pickings, while Warloworth accidentally breaks a toy elephant and makes a deal with the Crybabies to prevent the truth from getting out. When Noah sees what Kate and DJ have done, he tells them to confess the truth to the customer. Warloworth also confesses the truth after the other toys point out he has been lying.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: Angelina gets a song devoted to this in "Part of the Family".
  • Image Song: "Special", a song made to promote the show, is this for Johnny Crawfish.
  • Intentional Mess Making: In the episode "Mixed-Up Magic'', upon hearing that Noah is planning to have a sale at the shop, Warlow is worried that he and the other toys are going to be sold off, so he decides to wreck the store.
  • "I Want" Song: "Gimme, Gimme, Gimme" from "Big Bullies" is this for Disrupto.
  • Importation Expansion: The purpose of the show was to expand a 10-minute episode of Noddy's Toyland Adventures into a 30-minute show.
  • Incredible Shrinking Man: The kids get shrunk by Boobull in "Think Big".
  • Jerkass Ball: Although Kate is usually responsible and is just a kid, half of the time she and DJ can be mean to Truman, which causes problems, ranging from shooing him away which resulted in him acting out by spraying her and DJ with a hose and verbally bullying him for being too young to do anything (ie. Playing Catch, using bubble liquid and looking after a Rabbit).
  • Large Ham: Aunt Agatha.
  • Literal-Minded: Warloworth has done this a few times, and has caused trouble for others due to it:
    • In "Mixed-Up Magic", he mistook the shop having a sale for the toys being sold to others.
    • In "How Rude", he mistakes Noah saying the proverb "Rudeness is like a bad spell of magic" for him asking Warloworth to cast a spell on the others to make them misbehave.
  • Living Toys: The toys come to life when adults aren't around, but in Season 2, they can talk to Truman.
  • Mr. Imagination: Kate Tomten likes to tell stories using dolls of Noddy and Big Ears to help solve problems and Planet Pup loves imagining that he's a superhero from outer space.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: The toys usually sing songs to help kids overcome difficult and/or boring tasks. For example, "A Whole Lot Of Helping" taught them about how cleaning can be fun and "The ABC's of Fire" was a do-wop song about fire safety.
  • Narrating the Obvious: The purpose of the Ruby Reds and The Penguines. They will often repeat a statement someone else said in the form of a song, like when the Ruby Reds chorused "Not the goblins!" after one of the toys warned of their escape in "The Magic Key" or tell the viewer that a Noddy story or song is about to play, like when the Penguines sang "I feel a song coming on!" before the song in "Kate Loves A Parade" was sung.
  • Nobody Poops: Unlike most PBS Kids shows aimed at preschoolers at the time, note  this trope was averted, as the episode "Skunked" lets us know that Whiny and Whimper are able to use the bathroom.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Johnny Crawfish is based on Johnny Carson.
  • Non-Mammal Mammaries: Gertie Gator's dress clearly shows lines marking where her breasts would be.
  • Nursery Rhyme: In some episodes, the characters will read a nursery rhyme or fairy tale that's accompanied by a song reflecting the episode's moral.
  • Off-the-Shelf FX: This show features real toys as props in the background. Some of them were common, like a Folkmantis Emperor penguin puppet (wearing an unrelated blue hat) that can be seen in the image for this trope page, a purple carnival toy of a snake and the Little Miss Singing Mermaid doll. If the kids used Bumpy Dog in their story, it was occasionally portrayed as the actual Gund plush sold in stores at the time.
  • Official Couple: "Skunked" shows us that Bonita and Warloworth love each other and even get a musical number devoted to this.
  • Our Goblins Are Different: Like in the series the show frames, the goblins in this show act a lot like gremlins, causing mischief everywhere they go.
  • Once per Episode: This show has a lot:
    • The instrumental that signals the start of each episode.
    • Johnny Crawfish telling a joke.
    • The puppets singing a song.
    • The Noddy stories.
  • One-Steve Limit: The show has two characters named Jack: Jack Fable, a magician, and Jack Frost, who lives in a magic snowglobe.
  • Parental Bonus: Some of the pop culture references on the show are to things that only adults would get. Perhaps the most surprising was a Character of the Day using a catchphrase from Saturday Night Live.
  • Ping Pong Naïveté: The goblins (and on occasion Warloworth) often create trouble for others and learn their lesson afterwards, but after they've done bad deeds, they often will do them again.
  • Pun-Based Title: Many of the episode names are this:
    • "The Fish Story" is based on the phrase "fish story", meaning "an unbelievable story", and is fitting for three reasons: the first being that the episode has Aunt Agatha tell a story that "rodents" stole a ring belonging to Kate (which is a demonstration of the real meaning of the phrase), the second is that the kids play a fishing rod game with paper fish, and the third is that Johnny Crawfish has a new tankmate that lives with him.
    • "Jack Frost Is Coming To Town" is a play on the song Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town.
    • "Little Swap Of Horrors" is a play on Little Shop of Horrors.
    • "Lights, Camera, Chaos" is a play on "Lights, Cameras, Action".
    • "All Play and No Work" is a play on the phrase "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy".
    • "Going Bananas" is a pun on a phrase that means "going crazy".
    • Done with some of the song titles as well, usually referencing other songs. For example, "I Can Do Better Than You" is a play on "Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better", the song "Buddy, Can You Spare Some Time?" is a pun on "Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?" and "The Smallest Show On Earth" is a pun on "The Greatest Show On Earth".
  • Quieter Than Silence: During Take A Stand when the kids chase a customer away with their rival lemonade/ baked good stands they stop arguing and realize the customer’s gone. To really drive the point home a tumble weed rolls by them on the street!
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: The boat in the backyard of the shop was based on a similar boat in the backyard of Sean McCann's childhood home.
  • Recycled Premise: The show is basically a remake of Shining Time Station that is set in a toy store.
  • Recycled Title: One of the episodes of this show was titled "To The Rescue". One of the songs in the season two opener "Little Swap of Horrors" was also called "To The Rescue".
  • Rewritten Pop Version:
    • The Mister Rogers' Neighborhood CD "Songs From The Neighborhood" contains a pop cover of "Thank You For Being You" from the episode "Noah's Leaving", but with most of the lyrics changed to be about Mister Rogers. Unlike most examples of this trope, the song's original writer, Dennis Scott, rewrote the new version.
    • Dennis Scott's children's show "Just Imagine" features a rewritten version of the song "Bubble Trouble" from "Following Directions".
  • Separate Scene Storytelling: Whenever Kate would tell a story, it would show an episode of Noddy's Toyland Adventures that was related to the episode's theme.
  • "Sesame Street" Cred: Carol Kane played the Tooth Fairy, Harry Anderson played a magician, Gilbert Gottfried played Jack Frost, and Betty White played Santa Claus' wife Annabelle.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Sometimes before telling his jokes, Johnny Crawfish was announced by a voice saying "Here's Johnny!".
    • One of the lyrics of "The Burrito Song" is "Hasta la vista, burrito!".
    • In "Jack Frost Is Coming to Town", the titular character says "I am outta here!", which was Dennis Miller's catchphrase on Saturday Night Live.
    • In "Let's Go Fly A Kite", one of the Crybabies says "Make my day!" while in their alternate personality.
    • One episode was titled "Little Swap of Horrors".
    • In "Closing Up Shop", Granny Duck says "Of all the words spoken that cast a sad spell, the hardest to say is the wish of farewell", a reference to a similar line in the poem "Maud Muller" by John Greenleaf Whittier.
  • Smelly Skunk: In the episode "Skunked", Truman gets sprayed on by a skunk, and spends the whole episode lonely when everyone wants to get away from him.
  • Talking Animal: Most of the toy characters are animals, but Johnny Crawfish is a pet crawfish that talks.
  • That Reminds Me of a Song: Some of the songs, such as the fairy tale re-tellings and the two songs in the first episode, "The Magic Key".
  • The Tooth Hurts: During his song in "The Tooth Fairy", Johnny Crawfish wonders if teeth that have cavities are allowed to be given to the tooth fairy.
  • Toilet Humor: One of two PBS Kids shows aimed at preschoolers to use this note , one episode of the show has the Crybabies mistake a skunk smell for pooping in their diaper.
  • To the Tune of...: Most of the songs for this show are well-known melodies with new words added to them.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Warloworth likes chocolate bars and bubble gum.
  • Valentine's Day Episode: "Secret Valentine" takes place on Valentine's Day and is about Warloworth stealing the valentines from all the other toys because he thinks he did not get any. After seeing he did indeed get a valentine from everybody he has a change of heart. In addition Kate is trying to find out who sent her a secret valentine.
  • Very Special Episode: "Part Of The Family" was a Mother's Day episode that discussed foster children. The Child Welfare League of America assisted in writing the script.
  • Warning Song:
    • "The Day The Goblins Got Away" is sung by the toys and Johnny Crawfish in "The Magic Key" to warn Kate and Truman of the troubles that the goblins will cause in the shop.
    • The song "Another Nice Mess" from "The Big Mess" starts off with Johnny Crawfish warning everyone in the shop to run away from the vaccum cleaner that has gone awry in the shop before it escalates to the other toys singing about the trouble that it is causing.
  • Welcome Titles: The show's intro is a tour around the shop, where the camera focuses on the places where we see various characters. In order, we see a view of the shop, then Warloworth popping out of a jack in the box, then the characters by a train set, then Johnny in his aquarium, then Noddy and Planet Pup, then Gertie near the goblins in a dollhouse, then Island Princess, then a close-up of the babies and the group singing together.
  • What Does He See in Her?: Happens during the song "It's You" in Skunked, where the rest of the puppets don't understand why Bonita and Warloworth fell in love with each other. Granny Duck and Johnny say that the relationship will be short lived, the babies tell them that they are acting too mushy and to "knock off the goo" and Sherman just wants to forget it.
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: The show does not give any clue of where the town of Littleton Falls could be.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: In the song "I'm Not Scared" from "We All Say Boo!", the toys discuss their fears. They are, in order:
    • The Crybabies are afraid of the lights going out.
    • Stein is afraid of sauerkraut.
    • Bonita is afraid of bats. She also freaks out when something hurts her toe (as seen in The Big Mess and Skunked).
    • Gertie is afraid of cats.
    • Salt and Pepper are scared of the nighttime.
    • Johnny Crawfish has a fear of being bitten (but to rhyme, he says "a vampire's bite"). He also is scared of vacuum cleaners (as seen in The Big Mess where he warns everyone that it's causing trouble).
    • Warloworth's fear is the floor creaking.
    • Gaylord fears what's behind the closet door.
    • In an example not related to "I'm Not Scared", pretty much every toy in the show (as well as Aunt Agatha) is scared of the goblins.
  • Wicked Weasel: Warloworth loves to play tricks on the toys.
  • Wolverine Publicity: When the show was imported to the UK as Noddy In Toyland, the BBC had a particular fondness for Johnny Crawfish out of all the puppet characters created for the show for some odd reason. Two of the episodes where he's focused on note  played in weekly rotation, a couple of Noddy books and toy cars had him on it, despite not being made into a toy, and he even got his own music video to promote the show, as mentioned above.


Video Example(s):


The Noddy Shop theme

This theme song takes viewers on a tour of Notions, Oddities, Doodads and Delights of Yesterday.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / WelcomeTitles

Media sources: