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Western Animation / Purno de Purno

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Purno himself, ready to screw your mind up good.

What do you get when a Mind Screw and mature content have a baby? Purno de Purno, of course!

Purno de Purno (literally "Purno the Purno" in English and originally just Purno) is a Dutch "children's" cartoon created by Hans Peter Wessels that has been around for at least two decades now, and was broadcast by VPRO, a channel notable for airing rather mature "kids" shows. The show is about Purno, the eponymous purple-suited character, going on various bizarre adventures... and that's about it. At some point in the series, Purno would be joined by Sjakie, a completely tan-colored character, and Kiet (originally the Kietelaar), a blue character with red lips.

The show started around 1989-1990, and kept going until 1996. The show eventually got resurrected ten years later in 2006, and then ended again in 2007, for a total of five seasons. The show also had a spin-off called Purno Poseert, which depicted a CGI Purno mixed with live-action footage.


This work provides examples of:

  • All Just a Dream: It turns out that Purno turning into a girl and going on a vacation in the Middle East was just a dream.
  • Art Shifted Sequel: The 2006 revival series. The show was originally animated on an Amiga 2000, but usage of it for animation was dropped after Season 3.
  • Ascended Extra: Sjakie and Kiet were originally just supporting characters. In Season 4, they become main characters alongside Purno.
  • Asian Buck Teeth: Dr. Ha Chiu.
  • Asian Store-Owner: Dr. Ha Chiu, who owns a Chinese store that sells various potion-like liquids.
  • Attractive Bent-Gender: Purno is this in the episode where he drinks a potion that changes his gender. Kiet ends up having sex with "her" as a result.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall:
    • In the first episode of the show, one of the three people who challenge Purno to a race punches the screen and cracks it at some point.
    • Purno actually watches his own show in one episode. His television depicts exactly what is going on in the actual episode... which is literally just Purno watching himself watching himself. That is, until the TV loses signal and displays static.
  • Catch-Phrase: Purno's is "Sapperedosio!", which literally translates to "Oh, golly gee!".
  • Celebrity Paradox: Averted. Purno watches his own show in one episode, implying that the companies that made the show in real life exist in the Purno universe.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome:
    • Buuf disappears after Season 2.
    • Dr. Ha Chiu disappears after Season 3.
  • Conspicuous CG: Several instances, especially early on in the show.
  • Early Installment Character-Design Difference: Early on in the series, Sjakie and Kiet were more humanoid in appearance. In Season 4, Sjakie lost his body and basically became a walking version of his head, while Kiet was chibi-fied to some extent.
  • Endangered Species: In "Sunil Baba and the Forty Degrees", Purno states that his species, the Purnos, are an endangered species.
  • Gender Bender: Purno turned into a girl after drinking a gender-bending potion in one episode.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Exaggerated to monumental degrees. It's technically a kids show, and yet it gets away with enough mature content that it would be rated 18+ outside of the Netherlands. The reason the show got away with what it did was likely because Dutch TV was considered very good at the time and Moral Guardians feared they would get flamed if they attacked shows like Purno, so they flamed anime instead.
  • Giant Woman: One appears in "De Grote Blote Vrouw".
  • Gratuitous English: Characters occasionally use English in the series, e.g. Purno says "It was one of those nights..." in a couple of episodes.
  • Intentionally Awkward Title: The show's name contains a pun on "porno", so good luck telling someone what this show is called without them giving you a weird look.
  • Living Museum Exhibit: Purno and the gang become these in "Homomuseum".
  • Long Runner: The show's total runtime was from 1989 to 2007, a total of 18 years.
  • Lost World: Purno, Sjakie, and Kiet end up discovering a prehistoric world while trying to find a caveman that escaped the Homomuseum.
  • Love Interest: Purno had a girlfriend named Buuf in Season 2.
  • Mind Screw: Where do we begin?! The entire show is just a stream of constant weirdness, which isn't even saying much!
  • No Plot? No Problem!: Averted in Season 1; the plot of said season is that Purno must restore beauty to a princess. Played straight in all subsequent seasons, which lack a season-wide arc of any kind and are comprised entirely of Purno going on random wacky adventures, similar to shows like Fat Dog Mendoza.
  • Punny Name: Kiet's original name was the Kietelaar, which is a Dutch word for the clitoris.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Purno's hometown, Hootchie Cootchie Town, gets its name from Hootchie Cootchie Cartoons, which is one of the companies that worked on this show.
    • One of the humans in the Homomuseum is called the Homo Playstationus. He even has the PlayStation controller's buttons as toenails!
    • The name of the episode "Sunil Baba and the Forty Degrees".
    • Similarly, the name of the episode "Beauty on the Beach".
    • At the beginning of "Coconut Sjakie", Purno says "Now you're playing with power!"
    • Later on in "Coconut Sjakie", Bugs Bunny of all people pops out and helps Purno and Sjakie to find their way out of the video game.
  • Subverted Kids Show: How many people figured out the hard way that this actually isn't a kids show despite its target demographic is anyone's guess.
  • Surreal Humor: The show's main type of humor.
  • Vague Age: It's never explained how old Purno is in the show. Word of God is that Purno seems to almost literally be both an adult and a child at the same time, making matters more confusing.
  • Widget Series: Yup.
  • Win to Exit: Averted. Purno gets trapped in a video game, but Buuf literally pulls him out of the game before he has a chance to win.

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