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Western Animation / Testament: The Bible in Animation

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Testament: The Bible in Animation is a 1996 Animated Series produced by Sianel 4 Cymru. It features animated versions of stories from The Bible, each story using its own unique style of animation. It ran for two seasons in the United Kingdom and won one Emmy, with three nominations, in the United States.

Not particularly well known, it still managed a DVD release.

Testament provides examples of:

  • Aerith and Bob: Elijah and Ahab. Michael and Lucifer. However, all or most of these were common names at the time; we've only decided which ones to pass on to our children, and these have become normal.
  • Animal Stereotypes: The raven and the dove used in "Creation and the Flood".
  • The Antichrist: Shows up in "Creation and the Flood".
  • The Apprentice: Elijah gets one. He eventually takes over once Elijah assends into heaven.
  • Art Shift: Each episode used a unique style of animation.
  • Asshole Victim: The priests from Daniel who try to get him fed to the lions. Guess what happens to them.
  • Badass Cape: Elijah's spotted coat thing.
  • Badass Preacher: Elijah is most definitely one. Standing up to Jezebel is enough by itself even without everything else he did.
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  • Baleful Polymorph: The king of Babylon in "Daniel" is turned into a beast by God.
  • The Bible: Obviously. Each episode was a story taken from it.
  • Big Bad: Satan in "Creation and the Flood". He's this for all of humanity, obviously.
  • British Brevity: Two seasons, only nine episodes.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Satan tries to overthrow God. It doesn't go well since He's, you know, God.
  • Cain and Abel: Not the Trope Namer as might be expected, but Moses and Merneptah, the Pharaoh not realizing until after the Israelites have left that Moses was his friend. It is an interesting variation as Moses and Merneptah are not adopted brothers but, if we take the original text into account, rather adoptive nephew and uncle who are the same age.
  • The Chosen One: Saul and David were both the chosen one. Saul sees David as a rival to be eliminated, while David respects Saul's position enough to refuse to kill him—and in fact orders Saul's killer executed.
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  • Darker and Edgier: Most definitely more than your average animated show about the Bible. It tended to adapt stories directly without any sanitation and some of them were quite bloody or disturbing or both.
  • Don't Look Back: Lot's wife is turned to salt for looking back as God destroys Sodom and Gomorrah.
  • Downer Beginning: Ridiculously so in "Ruth". We're introduced to Naomi, then her husband dies, then one son, then the other. The episode Starts with Their Funeral...
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Anyone who doesn't follow God or sins against Him too badly is in for some pretty epic punishment. These include being beaten to death, turned to salt and burned alive.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Each episode, except for "Creation and the Flood", is named after its lead character.
  • Evil Former Friend: Merneptah to Moses.
  • Final Solution:
    • Happens to all of mankind (save Noah's family) in "Creation and the Flood".
    • All the residents of Sodom and Gomorrah.
    • Ramesses does this to the first-bond Israelite children. Ironically this is done many years later to the Egyptian children by the Angel of Death.
  • Fire and Brimstone Hell: Seen in "Creation and the Flood"
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Jezebel is far worse than Ahab.
  • The Good King: After the corrupt Babylonians, Darius is a refreshing example, making Daniel his governor.
  • Humans Are Bastards: Bastardly enough for all of them to be drowned aside from one family.
  • Irrevocable Order: The Medes and Persians had a law that if the king's ring was used to seal a proclamation, then it could not be undone even if the king changed his mind. In "Daniel", King Darius made a decree that anyone who prayed to a God other than him for a period of a week would be fed to the lions—and sealed it with his ring. Daniel continued to pray, and despite Daniel being the King's favorite, and the King not wanting to go through with it, Daniel was still thrown to the lions.
  • Last of His Kind: Elijah is the last prophet of God left in Israel.
  • Kill It with Water: The Red Sea closing on the Egyptian soldiers in "Moses".
  • Nefarious Pharaoh: Merneptah following in the footsteps of his father Rameses II.
  • Nice Hat: The High Priest of Baal.
  • Pride Before a Fall: Satan grew proud, Satan fell...
  • Protagonist-Centered Morality: Inevitable thanks to Values Dissonance. Special mention goes to Elijah ordering the execution of all the prophets of Baal, even though the slaying of God's prophets had earlier been shown as an atrocity.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Satan's serpent form is particularly creepy in this version.
  • Rivers of Blood: The Nile turns to blood in "Moses".
  • Secret Test of Character: God's command to Abraham to kill his son, Isaac.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": The accepted spellings for the individual portrayed as the Pharaoh of the Exodus are "Merneptah" and "Merenptah." The "Moses" episode, according to the credits, has his named spelled as "Mernefta", apparently a misspelling of the former spelling.
  • Spiritual Successor: To Shakespeare The Animated Tales, right down to having some of the same actors, using the same styles and using an anthology format with each episode being a standalone adaptation of a Shakespearean play or tale from the Bible.
  • Stop Motion: Three episodes were made this way.
  • The Unfavorite: Anyone who isn't one of the Jews/Israelites.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Ahab and Jezebel.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: A few times characters try to go against the path that God has laid out for them. None of them manage it.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: After Adam and Eve break the rules in the Garden of Eden, they are cast out forever. Though there will be a way back, eventually.

Example of: