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British TV series
 

     Ealing Animation's El Nombre


 
 
    El Nombre   (1994 - 2003)
 

    producers: Ealing Animation for the BBC
    animation: stop-motion animation

      EL NOMBRE SERIES:
      2000 / 13 x 5mins
      2003 / 13 x 5mins

      EL NOMBRE ON NUMBERTIME:
      1994 / 5 x 3.5mins       1999 / 5 x 4mins
      1997 / 10 x 4mins         2000 / 10 x 4.5mins
      1998 / 10 x 2mins         2001 / 10 x 4mins
                 5 x 4mins           2003 / 13 x 2mins
                10 x 4mins

 

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      "Adios amigos....
                      ...and keep smiling!"

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     "Hola!" and welcome to the little Mexican border town of Santa Flamingo, the
     bright and busy desert home of Little Juan and his best friend Pedro Gonzales,
     Juan's Mama, Maria Consuela Tequilla Chiquita, Little Pepita Consuela Tequilla      Chiquita, Tanto the friendly tarantula spider, El Gelato the ice-cream seller,
     Leonardo de Sombrero the pizza delivery boy, Senior Calculo the Bank Manager,
     and Senora Fedorra.  Life in this rustic town of ramshackle stores and haciendas
     would be just idyllic without the continued attentions of 'nasty' Don Fandango.
     Who will rid them of this spiteful bully who cheats at egg and spoon races and
     steals birthday cakes and custard pies? - The townsfolk can't help, but
     Little Juan knows who to call...

       Don Fandango    El Nombre - what a hombre!   

     El Nombre is a masked hero in black, a legend, a star. When summoned he
     swings in to frame to rout the bad guy, free the spider, retrieve the escaped bird,
     find the missing birthday cake, foil the egg and spoon cheat, and - oh! - so much
     more besides. He's part Errol Flynn, part Zorro, all Mexican Gerbil and the
     townsfolk simply adore him.

     And you know what? - So does The Hound. "El Nombre" is a fantastic fun series
     from Ealing Animation and former children's tv presenter Christopher Lillicrap.
     It's a hoot. It's beautifully designed and animated, the voices are terrific, the title
     tune instantly memorable. This gentle pastiche of a thousand western movie
     clichés is as complete and as thorough as you could wish for.

     El Nombre first appeared on our screens in 1994, via a series of interstitial
     animations produced for 'Numbertime', the BBC schools program all about
     numbers and mathematics. The first series of short films looked at shapes.
     Later series dealt with numbers and money and calulation. El Nombre still
     appears on the series today. Some of the interstitials from 1998 were
     incorporated into the BBC video of the first series. "El Nombre to the Rescue"
     includes "Learn Your Numbers With Little Juan" in which we witness El Nombre
     from above as he 'walks' a number in the desert dust. The watching youngsters
     call out "Again!" and El Nombre repeats his heroic action. They're great fun.
     
     The first proper "El Nombre" series reached our screens in 2001, and now,
     in 2004 a second season is being broadcast, together with still more
     interstitial shorts. Don't let yourself be put off by the "schools" accent, though,
     "El Nombre" is perfect anytime viewing for Schoolkids and Big Kids alike.
     Indeed, as if to prove a point, March 2004 saw the release of a fabulous
     "El Nombre" record, called "He's The One" (or is that "Juan"?). That's right,
     our hombre even has a hit single - What a hombre!

    
     El Nombre - What a hombre!

      The opening credits to the series include a fab tracking shot taking us through
        Santa Flamingo, from the railway station into the heart of town. Look out for
        poor Leonardo de Sombrero as he loses control of his moped and
        crashes into a barn!...

      When El Nombre is 'summoned' he swings into frame on his whip from
        out of nowhere, rounds up the business of the day, and swings away again
        just as heroically - just like a real hero should...

      El Nombre's very fond of corny rhyming couplets, but the townsfolk don't
        mind, they're simply in awe of their hero - cheesy limericks and all...

      Listen to those voices. That's Janet "Blue Peter" Ellis and Sophie "Dr Who"
        Aldred you can hear on the soundtrack. Like Chris Lillicrap, Janet and
        Sophie are two enduring, popular presenters of children's TV shows...

      Now listen to Tanto. When he moves he sounds like a balloon being
       squeezed and rubbed - brilliant!

      Speaking of Tanto, look out for Don Fandango disguised as the spider
        in The Phantom Tanto - ridiculous!
     
      The showdown in the The Great Custard Pie Fight is pure Leone. Watch for
        Don Fandango, felled by custard pies with just his right leg twitching...

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     El Nombre on DVD

     UK DVD  El Nombre
                 
Region 2 / twenty-six eps / Maverick / October 2005

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     El Nombre on CD

     UK DVD El Nombre's 'He's The One'
                El Nombre's single is still available from Amazon.co.uk!

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      Series One Episodes

      Where's That Spider?            
The Giant Cactus
      Free as a Bird                      
The Great Custard Pie Fight
      Sports Day    
                      When the Balloon Goes Up
      
All the Fun of the Fair           The Great Escape
      The Great Train Robbery        The Ghost of Santa Flamingo
      The Phantom Tanto              
Match of the Day
      The Missing Birthday Cake     

      Series Two Episodes

      Going for a Song                  
Beside the Sea
      Runaway Train                     
The Last Dance
      The Tent    
                        Saved by the Whale
      
Stuck at the Top                 Up, Up and Away
      The Great Bank Robbery        
A Very Important Visit
      The Great Sand Race            Winter Wonderland

      The Lemon Tree     

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      an Ealing Animation production for BBC World-wide
 
      producer:            Jilly Joseph, Richard Randolph
      exec prod:           Theresa Plummer-Andrews
      directors:            Chris Mendham, Geoff Walker
      writer:                  Christopher Lillicrap
      orig designs:        Ealing Animation
      models:               Fin Leadbitter, Humphrey Leadbitter,
                                Katy Maxwell
      props:                 Graeme Owen, Fin Leadbitter,
                                Sophie Brown, Katy Maxwell
      sets:                   Graeme Owen, Colin Armitage,
                                Sophie Brown, Humphrey Leadbitter
      animation:           Humphrey Leadbitter, Tim Allen,
                                Chris Mendham, Dan Sharp
      editing & fx:         David Brylewski
      facilities:             Oasis Television
      theme tune
       composer:
           Christopher Lillicrap
      music & effects:   Steve Marshall
      sound:                 Adrian Sear
      voices:                Steve Steen (El Nombre / El Gelato)
                                 Kate Robbins (Pedro / Don Fandango)
                                 Sophie Aldred (Little Juan)
                                 Janet Ellis (Maria)


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      On the web


        El Nombre
        This "Juan"s the official series "Juan", with info and fun, including
        a Custard Pie Fight game...

        Ealing Animation
        Here's another "Juan" you'll like.... It's Ealing's own "Juan"...


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© Ealing Animation / Christopher lillicrap / BBC Worldwide / F2006