An iconic British children's programme broadcast in 1975, which follows the adventures of a round-headed boy called Bod and his four adult friends Aunt Flo, Frank the Postman, Farmer Barleymow and P.C. Copper. Fondly remembered for its Limited Animation, simplistic designs (all the characters were created from nothing more than basic geometric shapes), and catchy theme music. The Bod stories were narrated by John Le Mesurier, famed for his portrayal of Sergeant Wilson in Dad's Army.
Thirteen episodes were produced, and were accompanied by a short, interactive puzzle (most notably the matching card game Bod Snap), as well the adventures of Alberto Frog, who was the conductor of an animal orchestra. These segments were narrated by Maggie Henderson. However, due to the BBC's cost-cutting policy of taping over its archives, only seven of these have survived intact (all of the main Bod episodes survive intact).
The Bod stories originated as a series of picture books by its authors Joanne and Michael Cole in the late 1960s, which were adapted for a storytime segment on Play School, which Michael Cole was working on at the time, a year before the animated series was commissioned.
The series provides examples of:
- The Baby of the Bunch: Bod himself appears to be the youngest of the main cast.
- Catchphrase: P.C. Copper, like the policeman he is, usually says "Hullo, hullo!" whenever he appears on the scene.
- Every Episode Ending: The Alberto Frog stories end with Alberto receiving a milkshake as a reward for solving a problem.
- Leit Motif: Every character has one. They're pretty infectious too!
- Limited Animation: The series has some pretty limited animation going on. Movements are very limited and often recycled (the characters' walk cycles are repeated in every episode) but it fits with the simplistic character designs and minimalist backgrounds.
- Meaningful Name: P.C. Copper (a "copper" is a slang term for a British police officer), Farmer Barleymow (barley is a staple crop on British farms and farmers often have to mow fields) and Frank the Postman (even now you can rent a special machine that can "frank" a letter or parcel with prepaid postage).
- Minimalist Cast: If you don't count the occasional appearance of an animal (such as the dogs from Bod and the Dog and the birds from Bod and the Cherry Tree), only the core five characters ever appear.