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Western Animation / Super 4

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Super 4 is a French computer-animated series based on Playmobil.

The setting is a world composed of several dissimilar lands, mainly Kingsland (a medieval setting), the Enchanted Island (inhabited by fairies), Gunpowder Island (inhabited by pirates), Technopolis (a futuristic setting) and The Lost World (an uncivilized island with dinosaurs).

The four main heroes are Prince Alex from Kingsland, Ruby from Gunpowder Island, Twinkle from the Enchanted Island, and Gene from Technopolis. They travel around the world in their ship, the Chameleon, and face several villains, mainly the pirates led by Captain Sharkbeard, the witch Baba Cara, the Black Baron or Dr X.

On July 1st, 2017, the show debuted on over-the-air television in the US as part of the KidsClick block of shows.


Super 4 provides examples of:

  • All-CGI Cartoon
  • Action Girl: Ruby aggressively so, though Twinkle is no pushover, either.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Gene adamantly insists that ghosts don't exist in a world already including fairies and dragons. Sure, their first two encounters were "Scooby-Doo" Hoaxes, but there are genuine ghosts too, including one prisoner of a vial in Alex's castle.
  • Beam-O-War: Witch Baba Cara and the Queen Fairy have a magical duel under this form in "Some Like It Magical".
  • Berserk Button:
    • Telling Ruby that she should Stay in the Kitchen, or any variation thereof, is a sure way to get into a sword fight. Even invoked by Alex in "The Final Countdown".
    • For Gene, doing anything to the Chameleon. The only time he ever loses his cool is when it gets stolen.
    • The mere sight of Twinkle on the Enchanted Island is this for the Fairy Queen. Even after Twinkle turns her back to normal in one story. Yes, her grudge against Twinkle is that bad...
  • Bewitched Amphibians
    • The backstory of Twinkle the Fairy is that she got exiled from Enchanted Island for (accidentally) turning the Queen Fairy into a (talking) frog. Attempts to turn her back all fall short thanks to Status Quo Is God. The one time it works, the Queen then tries to punish Twinkle... only to have her spell bounce off a mirror, and back at her, turning her back into a frog.
    • Although Twinkle can't quite be called an Inept Mage, when attempting any other kind of transformations, a mishap most commonly defaults to "turned into frog" (sometimes a giant one, though).
  • Call-Forward: In Ruby's origin story, Captain Sharkbeard ponders that they ought to stock their gunpowder in a safer place than the tower at the port's entrance, preferably the volcano. This nearly causes the whole Pirate Island to blow up later.
  • Colossus Climb: Alex climbs upon the Black Colossus (actually the Black Baron in disguise) to fight him while reduced to tiny size. Not that he's doing any damage to the armored giant, but he takes him out by Deadly Dodging.
  • Cool Car: The Chameleon, which can change form to fit into whatever world they visit.
  • Cutting the Knot: The gang has once to retrieve a precious item from a room where the floor is trapped. Ruby and Gene starts to argue on the best way, Ruby being ready for some daredevil acrobatics while Gene insists on a technological solution. Meanwhile, Twinkle just flies inside the room and retrieve the item.
  • Damsel in Distress:
    • This is the whole job of Princess Léonore, Alex's sister. She has dozen of stories to tell her friends about former kidnappings.
    • On the other hand, don't try to put Ruby in this role: she really hates it, and will violently express her disapproval as soon as freed.
    • The pirates once attract the team into a trap by luring them with a "damsel" in distress... in fact a pirate Disguised in Drag.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Gene is always deadpan, and it doesn't take much for him to lay out the sarcasm.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: Dr. X calls Rock Brock an idiotic idiot.
  • The Ditz: Twinkle's naïveté can reach extreme levels sometimes.
  • Expy: Alex is very similar to Prince Valiant.
  • The Fair Folk: The inhabitants of Enchanted Island.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: There are fairies, knights, pirates, robots, dinosaurs, etc.
  • Fashionable Asymmetry:
    • Alex wears chainmail on the left arm, but bracer and shoulderpad on the right. Also, his pants are yellow on one leg and white on the other.
    • Ruby wears a gold earring, er, hair-ring only on the left.
  • Flight: Twinkle, like all fairies, has translucent wings and can fly. In fact, she moves around this way more often than by ever walking.
  • Giant Mook: The Baron's Black Colossus.
  • Gratuitous English: The title is Super Four even in the French version. Although the way it's pronounced, it sounds like "Super Forts" (i.e. "Super Strong/Awesome").
  • Hand Cannon: Literally, in the case of one of the pirates, who has a small military cannon in place of a hand.
  • Happily Adopted: Ruby was found by a pirate, Rubens, who quit piracy to rear her. While she didn't like the peaceful life and wanted to be a pirate herself, she still loves her father.
  • Harmless Villain: Fourchesac the Wizard shows elements of this trope, especially in the now-notorious episode "Song of the Stork" which involves a Love Potion (albeit at G-Rated Drug levels). He's not quite a Knight of Cerebus, but often gets Hoist by His Own Petard.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: Alex and Ruby.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • Happens a fair bit to Fourchesac; first of all gaining Red Eyes due to a Love Potion in "Song of the Stork", and then Shapeshifting into King Kenric (when Alex said "We may as well have two kings then").
    • This happens to the Fairy Queen after Twinkle turns her back into a fairy. When the Queen tries to turn Twinkle into a frog like she once was, it bounces off a mirror and turns the Queen back into a frog.
  • Insufferable Genius: Dr. X.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: While Alex may not be as armored as other Kingsland knights, he fits the personality to a T.
  • Limited Wardrobe: A stricter example than most: the character models are always identical, keeping the same clothes even when sleeping, bar a few instances of disguises.
  • The Magic Touch: Ruby in "The Goose with the Golden Eggs". However, Twinkle lampshades the Blessed with Suck aspect; soon enough, Sharkbeard and the other pirates use her as their titular "golden goose".
  • McGuffin: The Golden Teapot of Kingsland is a frequent target of theft.
  • Merchandise-Driven: In the sense that the series is based on the Playmobil toyline. There are even sets made based off the show.
  • Motivation on a Stick: The episode "Chasing the Chameleon" has the team pursuing their vehicle seized by pirates, by riding a pterosaur they're directing with a fish dangling from a stick. The ride ain't exactly smooth, though.
  • My Greatest Failure: Twinkle is no longer welcome in her homeworld after accidentally turning the Queen of Fairies into a frog.
  • Only Six Faces: Naturally, since they are Playmobil figures, there is basically Only One Face. The characters are differentiated by clothes, hair, facial hair, eyes and skin color — and nothing else. They have a variety of body types to make up for this, though.
  • Pirate Girl: Ruby the Red. Reared on Pirate Island as a tavern wench, her dream was to join a pirate crew for a long time, but she had trouble imposing herself among the macho pirates. She's as rough and rowdy as any of them, however; don't try to have her play Damsel in Distress or tell her to Stay in the Kitchen if you're not ready for a swordfight.
  • Ragtag Band of Misfits: All of the heroes are outcasts in their homelands (especially Twinkle) and come from a variety of backgrounds.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure:
    • King Kenric, the ruler of Kingsland.
    • Inverted by the Fairy Queen, who continues to hold a grudge against Twinkle, even after Twinkle turns the Queen back into a true self.
  • Retractable Weapon: Alex's sword blade is retractable, being half as long when in its sheath. He once elongates it much further to use as an impromptu perch, although that's in an Imagine Spot.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Alien.
  • Security Cling: Sir Archibald jumps into Sir Garrett's arms upon seeing a ghost.
  • Status Quo Is God: Invoked for (dark) humor. Twinkle manages to cure the curse she had placed on the Fairy Queen. However, the less-than-grateful queen then tries to inflict the same curse on Twinkle, only for it to bounce off of a mirror and hit her. And all because of (in the Queen's eyes) the mistake Twinkle made in the first place.
  • The Stoic: Gene is very serious. However, he seems a happy guy when compared to other inhabitants of Technopolis.
  • Super Wrist-Gadget: Gene's wristband is a portable computer with a holographic display. He uses it about all the time for many diverse functions, including an Everything Sensor.
  • Theme Tune Roll Call: "Ruby, Twinkle, Alex, and Geeeeene!"
  • Throwing Down the Gauntlet: Literal example, several times, in "A Colossal Challenge", to defy the Baron by throwing a gauntlet at his head. After the third or fourth times, he just shakes his head in annoyance.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Ruby is a family-friendly version of the trope, as she tends to be focused on stealing treasure, but is still loyal to her friends.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Ruby and Twinkle.
  • Two Girls to a Team: Ruby and Twinkle.
  • Wild Card: Dr X, the ruler of Technopolis, can be either an ally or an enemy depending on the episode.
  • X-Ray Sparks:
    • Dr X, while holding a robot that gets hit by lightning, turns into a luminous skeleton.
    • The Tyrannosaurus rex in the "Origins" episode, while trying to attack the Chameleon, gets quite the shock when Gene activates the defense system, highlighting its whole skeleton.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: Twinkle finally succeeds in turning the Fairy Queen back into her true self... only for the Queen to be ungrateful, and continue to hold a grudge due to the mistake Twinkle made in the first place. This leads her to try turning Twinkle into the frog she once was. In other words, despite making it right, it didn't make any difference, and as a result, Twinkle is still exiled from her home...
  • Zombie Apocalypse: A G-Rated version in "Song of the Stork".


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