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Western Animation / The Saga of Noggin the Nog

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In the lands of the North, where the black rocks stand guard against the cold sea, in the dark night that is very long the Men of the Northlands sit by their great log fires and they tell a tale... they tell a tale of Noggin the Nog, the king of a land that strongly echoes popular culture's depiction of viking culture.

The Saga of Noggin the Nog is a British children's television series that originally aired in 1959.

This work provides examples of:

  • Adults Are Useless: This happens in the very last film "Noggin and the Pie" — no-one will take Knut's concerns about the gigantic and suspicious pie seriously. It is thus left to him and the other children to save the day.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: In "The Omruds", Nogbad the Bad and his crows capture Noggin's castle.
  • Anti-Magic: Olaf has a jewel that apparently grants him immunity to the effects of magic.
  • Bungling Inventor: Olaf the Lofty, court inventor, whose inventions have mixed results; some work, some partly work and some do the opposite of what he wanted.
  • Chain of Deals: In one of the spin-off books, Olaf the Lofty invents money and uses it to buy something off Thor Nogson, who then spends a frustrating day in the (barter-based) marketplace trying to find somebody else who'll take the coins as payment. Eventually he meets a fisherman who sees the coins as weights for fishing lines and gives him a fish for them, allowing him to set up a chain of deals running back through all the people he's talked to and ending with him getting the thing he'd come to the market to buy in the first place.
  • Cool Chair: King Knut's chair of stone. Placed at the top of a very tall, steep hill, King Knut would walk up to it every dawn and sit there to watch the sunrise, and watch over his Kingdom.
  • Cool Sword: The closest Nogbad ever got to ruling the Northlands (not to mention the world) was when he obtained the Sorcerer's Sword in "Firecake". It was a longsword that gave the wielder control over all living beings in the world, except for the stone giants. It was useless as a melee weapon, as Prince Knut was able to shatter it into pieces on a rock like glass, making it more like a magic wand than a sword.
  • Ditzy Genius: While clearly a competent inventor, Olaf has a knack for making poor decisions and getting things wrong.
  • Enchanted Forest: The Great Black Forest of Troldeskow is a brief obstacle in "The Ice Dragon". The trees move around, allowing no paths and confounding any who enter.
  • Ethnic Magician: The politically-incorrect (by modern standards) Arab in "The Flying Machine".
  • Evil Weapon: The Sorcerer's Sword is explicitly said to be full of evil magic.
  • Harmless Freezing: The Ice Dragon's breath encases an object or person in ice, but if they are thawed out soon enough, they suffer no ill effects.
  • Loophole Abuse: Nogbad can never steal again, lest he face the wrath of the dragons, so he instead trains a murder of crows to steal for him.
  • Magically-Binding Contract: Nogbad is forced to sign a promise written on Dragon Paper, which lets the dragons know if he ever steals again.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Olaf has this reaction after Nogbad's crows steal his firecake recipe. This disaster could have been avoided if Olaf had followed Noggin's repeated orders to destroy it.
  • Nice Guy: Noggin himself.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Olaf's inventions have a habit of leading to this; both his failed shrinking potion and his recipe for firecake land in the hands of Nogbad the Bad, who uses them to create an army of huge crows and uncover the Sorcerer's Sword respectively.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: Nogbad the Bad never fights (even when Thor Nogson challenges him) and usually has his crows do his dirty work; the latter is at least partly justified after he is forced to sign a contract with the dragons never to steal again.
  • Non-Fatal Explosions: Olaf's discovery of gunpowder (called "firecake") blows him through the castle wall, completely unharmed. Olaf apparently has a habit of doing this; he quite happily blows himself through a wall whilst working on his fire machine, and later his explosive called "firecake".
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Noggin and Thor Nogson, while searching for the ice dragon, realise that the "hill" they have climbed is in fact the dragon's back.
    • Nogbad has this reaction when he sees that the Sorcerer's Sword is ineffective against the Stone Giants
    • Graculus follows a crow that has stolen one of Olaf's formulas into a cave, and runs straight into Nogbad the Bad
  • Old Soldier: Thor Nogson, Captain of the King's Guard and Noggin's constant companion. He gets bored in times of peace and is eager to challenge Nogbad to a duel when the opportunity presents himself. He is less than eager when it comes to new experiences though, such as flying or fighting a dragon.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: Fire-breathing dragons are only mentioned, but a dragon that breathes ice and can only be in hot areas for a limited amount of time becomes an ally of Noggin.
  • Our Dwarves Are All the Same: Played with. No actual dwarves appear, but Ronf (the only really characterised one of the Little People of Hot Water Valley) is a belligerent, heavily bearded warrior with a Scottish accent; while his people don't normally live underground (except when hiding from the dragon), they do use tunnels to get through the Glass Mountains. Meanwhile, the other little people - the Omruds - DO live underground and are ingenious engineers and craftsmen. So basically dwarf tropes are divided between the two.
  • Plot-Triggering Death: The first episode involved the death of King Knut, which set off Prince Noggin's first quest; to find his bride and Queen.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Noggin undertakes the various quests himself, usually with Thor Nogson and Graculus. In his spare time, he helps with the gardening.
  • Summon Bigger Fish: Faced with the pretender Emperor, Noggin summons the benevolent genie that he borrowed from Haroun. The Emperor summons his own genie, a much larger genie that can actually fight. Noggin uses his talisman to summon Groliffe, who happens to be the one type of dragon that can kill the black genie.
  • Tears from a Stone: In the episode "Firecake", the statues (revealed to be hibernating guardians of the Sorcerer's sword) can cry when faced with death/rejection.
  • Throwing Down the Gauntlet: In "The Omruds" Thor Nogson challenges Nogbad the Bad to single combat. Nogbad accepts but, being the Dirty Coward that he is, immediately uses a magic potion to triple his size. Thor Nogson tries again in "Firecake"; this time Nogbad refuses until he has unearthed the Sorcerer's Sword.