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Western Animation / The Bluffers

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"In the immense map of the heavens, among the billions of stars and planets, there is only one globe expensive enough to show Bluffonia, homeworld of The Bluffers!"

Has absolutely nothing to do with cliff faces or people who are good at card games.

The Bluffers is a short-lived animated series from the mid-late 1980s that originated from the Netherlands. It received a wide distribution, and the English dub has surprisingly good lip synch.

It follows some Woodland Creatures who live in the only patch of forest left in a desolate land known as Bluffonia, which is ruled by the nasty dictator Clandestino. The Bluffers, as these critters are called, are obsessed with stealing Clandestino's "Secret to Getting It All," which they hope will save their forest.


  • Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: Blossom is a pink mouse with a heart-shaped tail-tip, Zip the squirrel is blue, although he could be meant to be actually grey, and Honey Boy the bear has yellow stripes on his chest.
  • Ax-Crazy: Prickly Pine, a hyperactive and grouchy porcupine who'd launch a volley of quills before even looking at you, can be considered a rare heroic version of this trope (scaled down for kids, of course).
  • Beleaguered Assistant: Clandestino's butler Sillycone, who is a robot. A cheerful British Robot.
  • Crapsaccharine World: Bluffonia is a whimsical Funny Animal world...that's been taken over and reduced to a polluted wasteland by Clandestino, except for a very small section of forest inhabited by the last remaining resistance.
  • Cunning Like a Fox: Sharpey is a zigzagged example; he wants to live up to the archetype, but is never really able to pull off the more villainous aspects of the trope.
  • Cut Short: The series was canceled before they could reveal what Clandestino's secret was.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Sharpey the Fox, who tries to lie, cheat, and steal like a "real fox," but never seems to do it right.
  • Evil Is Petty: The second episode revolves around Clandestino trying to stop time because, having been born on February 29th, he feels cheated out of all the birthday parties he should have gotten.
  • Feather Fingers: Zocrates, Regal Eagle, and Gin-Seng (who are all bird characters) are perfectly capable of using their wings like fingers to make gestures and manipulate objects. In "Follow the Bio-Brick Road" for example, Gin-Seng can, at one point, be seen grasping the Redberries that fell onto the grass and putting them back into the basket.
  • Friendly Enemy: Glum, whilst officially the Bluffers' enemy as Clandestino's guard-dog, never actively tries to hurt the Bluffers or even stop them from their schemes. In one episode where the Bluffers try to steal some paint from Clandestino's castle, Glum actively helps them by showing them where the paint is stored, and even reminds them that he is Clandestino's guard when they worry about getting caught.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Glum, Clandestino's mistreated watchdog, though due to distrust on the part of the Bluffers and a desire for a warm bed he never gets to act on it aside from a few complaints.
  • Hope Spot: The series ended on a hopeful note for the Bluffers, with Clandestino inadvertently flooding the lower portions of his castle and making it impossible for him to access the vault containing his precious secret.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: All three villains are this, to varying degrees.
    • Clandestino, whilst definitely the most actively malicious and cruel of the villains, is also a petty, greedy, vainglorious buffoon. Whilst not necessarily "sympathetic", it's quite hard to imagine how he could have conquered Bluffonia all on his own, thus adding to the impression of power that "The Secret of Getting It All" must have and why both sides are so convinced that its ownership will determine the world's ultimate fate.
    • Sillycone is a British butler-themed male Robot Maid who is cheerful, friendly, good-humored and always polite to everyone, but who is completely and unshakably loyal to Clandestino.
    • Glum is the purest example of this trope; having betrayed the Bluffers for the dubious promise of comfort and security as Clandestino's underling, he regrets his choice on some level, but hasn't got the courage to actively rebel against his master and is understandably distrusted by the Bluffers.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold:
    • Sharpey wants to be a villain, but between his own soft-hearted nature and the pragmatic realization that Clandestino is a far greater threat to all Bluffer-kind, he ultimately is firmly on the heroes' side.
    • Prickly Pine loves to fight and attacks at the slightest opportunity, but he does his best to direct his violent urges against Clandestino.
  • Legacy Seeker: One episode begins with the villain Clandestino having a dream where he dies and ascends to the Hall of Fame, where a godly voice declares that he has earned his place among history's greats. However, the voice points out that Clandestino neglected to leave behind a monument or edifice to his greatness on Earth, and thus he will eventually be forgotten. Clandestino awakes and vows that the dream will not come true, and begins building a memorial gallery to himself. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Lyrical Dissonance: Zigzagged with the English version of the main theme. Both the introduction and the ending credits versions have a bouncy, bubbly, up-beat sort of melody. However, in the intro version, the lyrics are extremely depressing, calling the listener a foolish dreamer who is doomed to suffer and fail, and whose plans will never work. In the end credits version, though, the lyrics initially starts in the same vein, but then it changes direction in a "tough love"-themed motivational song, encouraging the listener to never give up without a fight, no matter how hard it is.
  • MacGuffin: The Secret of Getting It All. What is it? We don't know. All we know is that Clandestino used it to conquer Bluffonia, and that the Bluffers want to steal it from him, as they believe it will help them reclaim their homeland. This belief is given further support by the fact that Clandestino is openly terrified of the possibility of their success, and even threatens to kill his underlings Sillycone and Glum if they dare to lay eyes on it.
  • Minion with an F in Evil: Both Sillycone and Glum to Clandestino. While Sillycone dotes over Clandestino and even helps think up schemes, he lacks much of a wrathful streak. Glum, meanwhile, has no animosity towards the Bluffers at all and whilst he never actively helps them, he never actively tries to stop them either.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Clandestino. Subverted with shy Psycho the Snake whose name comes from his minor Psychic Powers.
  • The Narrator: Gene Deitch (of Tom and Jerry and Terrytoons fame) on the English dub.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: In the English dub, Blossom has a Southern drawl. When she feels like it.
  • The Owl-Knowing One: Zocrates is not only named after Socrates, he is even dressed like a stereotypical ancient Greek, complete with laurel wreath on his head. He also has a Greek column carved in the bark of his tree.
  • Riddle for the Ages: What exactly was "the Secret of Getting It All"? The audience never finds out.
  • She's Not My Girlfriend: As Zipper insists to the ever clingy Blossom.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Blossom the Mouse's sole purpose on the show seems to be "be a girl" and "flirt with obviously annoyed Zipper", though she is the only one who takes Glum's Heel–Face Turn as genuine.
  • Sssssnake Talk: Subverted with Psycho the snake in that his speech impediment is putting silent P's in front of words starting with S. He still has a slight lisp, though.
  • Status Quo Is God: The animals would always foil Clandestino's schemes, but never get any closer to stealing his secret. Zigzagged in the finale; the Bluffers still fail to get his Secret... but they flood his special vault and send the Secret washing away, meaning Clandestino can never use again himself!
  • Token Evil Teammate: Sharpey the Fox wants to be a lying, cheating thief, as he feels that these are the things that a fox is supposed to do. But between the pragmatic realization that he needs to work together with the other Bluffers to oust Clandestino and his own ill-suited temperament, he's ultimately on the side of the heroes.
  • Vile Villain, Laughable Lackey: Clandestino is a greedy, polluting tyrant, and has a guard dog named Glum who is a Minion with an F in Evil and is frequently mistreated.
  • Villain Exclusivity Clause: Clandestino.