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Western Animation / Piggsburg Pigs!

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Piggsburg Pigs! is a forgotten little series released in 1990 by Ruby-Spears as part of the very first season of the Fox Kids block. It took place in the town of Piggsburg, which as the name implies was inhabited by anthropormophic pigs, and focused on the adventures of the Bacon brothers Bo, Portly and Pighead, and their (pet?) duck Quackers.

They were constantly ducking the schemes of the wolves Huff and Puff to eat them for lunch, but supernatural danger would also frequently appear from the Forbidden Zone, the menacing swamp on the edge of town. The heavy usage of some pretty genuinely menacing monsters for a cartoon where the main characters were silly anthropomorphic animals probably explains a lot about why this show isn't more remembered.

The series had a limited Region 2 DVD release, but has yet to be seen again in the States.

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Tropes:

  • Aerith and Bob: Bo, Lorelei and Dottie might be slightly unusual names, but they're real ones. Portly isn't that weird, but "Pighead"??
  • Baleful Polymorph: The power of Artemis Night from "Carnival of Evil." Seeing his true undead face turns people into merry-go-round animals, of all things.
  • Chekhov's Skill: In "Case of the Troublesome Monster" Pighead's learning to imitate voices at the beginning of the episode. At the end it lets him imitate the voice of the only person who can say a magic spell to de-animate a giant killer statue, saving everybody (even though he doesn't sound a thing like the person he's supposedly copying).
  • Circus of Fear: Or "Carnival of Evil."
  • Even Evil Has Standards: The episode "Creatures" has a pair of monsters packing the Critters-expies into a crate and throwing them into Piggsburg to get rid of them.
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  • Excited Show Title!
  • Expository Theme Tune: Two versions. The song is the same, but one was done by a singer with a distinctly rougher voice.
  • Forbidden Zone: The swamp outside town, and actually called the Forbidden Zone, even. Home to all manner of swamp monsters, evil spirits, undead and more than one Mad Scientist. However since every episode ended up there eventually, there was really nothing keeping anybody from going in (or out...), so the "forbidden" part seems to have been more of a suggestion that nobody really followed.
  • Fully Dressed Cartoon Animal: The entire porcine cast, though their shoes were cut to resemble pig hooves. The wolves are instead Half-Dressed Cartoon Animals.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: One episode has the girl pigs sneaking into a men's locker room and then an occupied shower room to catch a pair of little monsters. In a 1990 Saturday morning cartoon.
  • Hurricane of Puns: Every pig-related bit of wordplay they could come up with.
  • I Don't Like the Sound of That Place: The Carnival of Night. And no wonder, it's being run by zombies.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Huff and Puff, who were there mainly to keep the episodes from getting too scary.
  • Invisible Holes: In one episode the wolves accidentally end up in a carnival shooting gallery. They escape, then have a drink and find out they didn't get away unscathed after all.
  • Kids Driving Cars: The title pigs drive around in motor vehicles. In fact, the episode "Vampire Dogs of Mars" actually has Pighead and Portley stopping at a gas station to fuel up their car.
  • Lions and Tigers and Humans... Oh, My!: The show featured both Funny Animals and humans.
  • Living Statue: In one episode a pair of gargoyles are trying to find out the secret spell to bring a giant gargoyle statue to life.
  • Mineral MacGuffin: The Crystal of Darkness that an evil spirit needs to escape his prison under the Forbidden Zone. It was being displayed in a jewelry store when his henchman found it!
  • Monster of the Week: The plot was always driven by some supernatural evil escaping the Forbidden Zone, which is kind of an unexpected choice for a cartoon about talking pigs.
  • No Ontological Inertia:
    • At the beginning of one episode a vampire brings the eponymous Vampire Dogs From Mars to life from a movie at a drive-in. When the vampire's destroyed at the end of the episode the dogs turn into a poster for the movie.
    • Likewise in "Carnival of Evil" the monster falling victim to his own power automatically changes all his victims back to normal.
  • Rich Bitch: Male example with Rembrandt Proudpork.
  • Swiss-Army Superpower: Quackers was often used as a replacement for whatever tool the pigs needed to get out of the current problem, from a harpoon to a squirt gun to an axe (!) to an outboard motor. One of the more common (and weird) uses he was put to was having a flashlight shoved in his bill with the pigs then walking around holding him up by the feet.
  • They Called Me Mad!: The Freudian Excuse used by Dr. Sargasso in "Pighead's Brain".
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: There were a couple episodes such as "Pighead's Brain" and "Mystery of the Swamp Mansion" with human characters who never thought anything at all of meeting anthropomorphic pigs and wolves or vice versa. A few times the guys pigs were shown being attracted to beautiful human women, with the girl pigs getting jealous of the beautiful human women too.
  • Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: As noted the talking pigs are pretty typical of most Funny Animal fare, but each episode ends up being about some monster or other being that's portrayed as menacing as they could get away with on a Saturday morning cartoon.
  • Whole Plot Reference: The episode "Creatures" is basically a G-rated version of Critters.

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