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Toonhound presents...






It's A Puppet!

'Mr Sage and Mr Onion' - copyright Rollinclover Limited

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The Leprechauns     (1995 - 2001)
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puppets: hand puppets
          creators: Darryl Worbey, John Eccleston 
                         and Don Austen

   appearances: 150 appearances on
                          BBC tv's Live & Kicking.


Bejeezus and begorrah! - Here's Mr Sage and Mr Onion, two of the daftest "oirish"
    fellas ever to have graced our tv screens. These fine creations first appeared on
    the second series of the BBC's "Live and Kicking" saturday morning entertainment
    show. They popped up on show number 21, on the 4th February 1995. Their role
    was simply to titillate, twitterpate and titter in between segments of the live show,
    but they quickly went on to steal the whole darned thing. No star guest was big
    enough to outshine the sparkling pair, with their nonsensical banter and patter.

    So whom was Mr Sage, and whom Mr Onion? - Who knows! - What is known is
    that they successfully outlived presenters Phillip Scofield and Emma Forbes,
    flourished through the Good Old Days of Zoe Ball and Jamie Theakston and stayed
    on right up to the show's demise in 2001. In the end they joked, joshed and jested
    with the star guests on more than 150 shows and notched up in excess of 500
    sketches with luminaries as diverse as Brittany Spears, The Spice Girls,
    Westlife, Cher, Nanette Newman, French and Saunders, BoyZone, Rolf Harris
    and Lionel Blair.
    The Sage and Onion puppets were brought to life through a combination of
    hand puppetry and animatronics by Darryl Worbey, John Eccleston and
    Don Austen - puppet designers, builders and operators at the forefront of
    their industry. John and Don have individual credits on the likes of "Labyrinth",
    "Little Shop of Horrors" and "Muppet Treasure Island". All three muppeteeered
    in various capacities on "Muppet Christmas Carol" and Darryl Worbey Studios
    have built Emlyn the CBBC Gremlin, "The Timekeepers", and recently the
    boom-booming new-look Basil Brush.

    Trivia Hounds will note that John and Don also manipulated The Wolves
    on STV's "What's Up Doc!" - the Big Saturday Morning Rival to the BBC
    just prior to 'L&K's launch!

    "Live and Kicking" may be gone now, but Mr Sage and Mr Onion remain. And
    who knows, with the luck of the Irish they may yet return...


     The weakest Leprechauns!

      The Weakest Leprechauns

     Actually, on 28th december 2007, Mr Sage and Mr Onion did indeed return
     to our screens, courtesy of hit BBC quiz show "The Weakest Link". They
     appeared alongside a jolly bunch of similar tv puppets in a celebrity charity
     special. But alas, they were deemed the weakest link of all, and were voted
     off the show in the very first round!

     For the record, the winning "guest" was Soo, who collected £11,500 for
     the W.W.F. (for their work with pandas, naturally).


     On the web


     Need a puppet for your new series? - This is the place to go.
     This official details all the puppets built by the studio, together with
     a selection of press cuttings, behind-the-scenes photos,
     contact information and more...

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© Rollinclover Limited / F2008