Can you judge a character by the quality of their theme tune? If so, then even before you hear Dogtanian speak, with his ‘one for all and all for one’ refrain, you know you’ve been sold a pup. Quite who came up with the concept of an animated canine version of Alexandre Dumas’ novel, I have no idea. I’m guessing the brainstorming session got no further than that the stunning thought that ‘d’Artagnan? That sounds a bit like … Dogtanian!’ Rabies apparently, by the way. Sadly rife in revolutionary cartoon France.
What’s that Iggle Piggle? Someone’s shredded the sail on your little boat? Oh that is a shame, especially with that storm brewing as well. What’s that? You want to know if I can get word to the Pinky Ponk to come out and rescue you? Well, I’d love to, but unfortunately I can’t understand a single squeak you’re saying …
I’m not saying Heidi was dubbed badly, but she was still droning on about her beloved grandfather well into the subsequent edition of John Craven’s Newsround. This 213-part adaptation of the Johanna Spyri novel went on and drearily on like a Children’s TV version of Groundhog Day (I’m exaggerating, though only slightly). The most thrilling thing that happened in several years’ worth of Alpine ‘drama’ was when Peter the goatherd pushed sickly Clara’s wheelchair off the mountainside to prove she could walk. Careful now, Heidi: dangerous things, the sides of mountains...
I have this little character called Lola and she is extremely annoying. She thinks she is the most amazing and the best character ever because she can speaks in a girlie voice that is the most full of cutesy little linguistical mistakes. I’m waiting for the episode when she discovers why she is named after that song by the Kinks.
The only way this cartoon character could be more aptly named was if his full name was revealed to be Scrappy Doo Doo. Scooby’s nephew was the scrappy scrapings of the Hanna Barbera barrel, the runt of the litter who had to be held back three times an episode from his empty threat to ‘let me at ‘em’. Stop being so over-protective, Uncle Scoobs, let’s see what Scrappy can do against the caretaker with the baseball bat. Oh, you were right. He wasn’t ready, after all.
The entire cast of 'Why Don't You'
Smug, self-satisfied do goody theatre school twunts to a tee. When they weren’t doing side-splitting joke routines with sock puppets, the Why Don’t You ‘gang’ were telling readers to switch off and go and do something less boring instead. Well, ‘gang’, we viewers actually like watching TV, so if you think you’re better than us, you can always sod off and do something you think more worthwhile (I don’t know, brass rubbing or something), and leave the rest of us with the Battle of the Planets repeats we’d far rather be watching. Last seen, I think, as murdered extras on The Bill.
I wish I could fly. You can. I can’t. You can. Actually, you can’t Orville. That’s because Keith Harris has got his hand shoved firmly up your backside, preventing you from taking off by clinging on tightly to what amounts to the last shreds of his dignity.
The revolution, according to the late, great Gil Scott Heron, will not be televised. Which is a real shame, frankly, because if it was, an updated version of controversial eighties programme Death of a Princess would be a absolute ratings winner. That and the spin-off show in which Jane Horrocks is charged with being a collaborator, her voice-overs found guilty of causing mass suffering among parents everywhere, and after losing the subsequent phone in vote, taken quietly round the back.
I could cite the almost creative non-creativity of his name. I could mention a costume change to superhero so transparent you worry for all the other ‘Where’s Prince Adam gone?’ characters. But really, it was the moralising Jerry Springer style ‘final thought’ at the end that took the entire pack of Hob Nobs. Every week, He-Man would piously lecture the viewer about how lying is bad, being nice to people is good, and that writers making cheap innuendo about a character discovering the ‘power’ of his ‘sword’ are neither big or clever.
Daddy, Daddy! Why isn’t Peppa Pig on Milkshake this morning? I’ve no idea, love, but come and eat your breakfast while it is still warm. Now, do you want brown sauce or ketchup to go with your bacon sandwich?
Tom Bromley’s latest book, All In The Best Possible Taste, is out now in paperback.