The Hound says "Welcome to Toonhound!" TheHound - an irregular round up of toon news and chatter from the uk...cartoon news interviews and views from the UK!  Union Jack


  british toon
  news & chatter
  animated films
  & shorts

  animated series

  animation studios

  & people

  string, hand
  & finger puppets

  characters, strips
  & comic books

  British animators
  & illustrators


Toonhound presents...






      March 2008
 Extra! Extra! - Read all the Toon News!

    Mad March Art - Part 2
New Robert Harrop goodies....

    A Likeaball record
And a DVD...

    Mad March Art - Part 1
New SmallFilms giclees...

    Mad March Art - Part 5
One last Dredd-ful selection...

    Mad March Art - Part 4
A Captain Scarlet replica puppet...

    Mad March Art - Part 3

   Roobarb + Rupert giclees, and more...

    Bakewell tart
Wallace's new sweetheart...

    Thomas Land

A brand new theme park...

    200 at last!
   A milestone is finally reached...  more »

   news archive »     interviews »      giveaways »

    Mad March Art - Part 5    

    Goodness, this is tight. But here we are, on March 31st, and
    there's just enough time for one last mad selection of new Brit-toon
    art to get collectors and fans in a spin...

    Prog. 403 cover  Prog.228 cover - Rogue Trooper

    This final selection brings us full circle, back to our friends at
    The Animation Art Gallery. And as you can see, they've just
    unveiled the first pieces in a new selection of fine art prints taken
    from the pages - and indeed, covers - of "2000ad". Their first
    giclee selection includes classic cover art from Brian Bolland
    and Dave Gibbons. These two numbered pieces are restricted to
    just 150 editions...

   Prog. 169 by Mike McMahon

    Then there's a BIG line art giclee by Mike McMahon. It's the
    ridiculously detailed wraparound cover to prog 169. This one's
    restricted to just 50 editions and measures a whopping 36"x24".
    Big enough to get in all that detail, that's for sure....

    Judge Dredd by Mike McMahon

    Finally, in this first selection, there's a classic standalone piece
    starring ol' mean eyes himself, Judge Dredd. This one's available in
    both regular and mega sizes, to suit your wallspace...

    Given the wealth of fantastic artwork that's been generated for this
    comic over the years, it's safe to say the range has plenty of room
    for expansion!

    And - phew-ee! - I reckon that'll do for the month. Now some folks
    reading these recent entries may be forgiven for thinking that
    Toonhound has become nothing more than a walking, talking
    advert for the companies we've been writing about. But you know,
    this old dawg's a fan of all things brit-toon related. His kennel is
    stuffed-to-busting with giclee prints, original art and figures. It's
    a natural extension of his cartoon enthusiasm... so it surely
    makes sense to fanfare some of these tie-in goodies, one in
    a while...

    Er, doesn't it? - If you disagree with me, let me know. And similarly,
    if you've been tempted by the trinkets highlighted here, drop me a
    line and share your enthusiasm. Should The Hound continue with
    these intermittent round-ups, or should he simply stick to good
    old-fashioned toon news....?

    Mad March Art - Part 4   

    Call yourself a Gerry Anderson fan? Really? Oh. Then you'll
    already have one of these on order...

    Captain Scarlet Replica Puppet - order yours now from Forbidden Planet!

    What we have here, folks, is an extraordinary Captain Scarlet
    Replica Puppet brought to us by geniuses at Iconic Replicas.
    And by that we mean a complete, authentic scale replica of the
    puppet used in the original series. The official site features lots
    of mouthwatering pictures of the puppet in production. And it
    lets us know that there are only going to be 500 of these beauties
    made, with each presented in its own display case, complete with
    a handsome plaque. These are more than just replicas, though,
    more like museum pieces. And of course, they're not cheap.
    They'll set you back somewhere in the region of £300 each.
    But if you count yourself as a hardcore Scarlet fan... and this
    here Hound is most certainly one of them... well... you just have
    to dig deep... you really do... And what's more, Captain Black
    will be following on, later this year... Oh... My... Goodness...

    You can order your Captain Scarlet replica direct from Iconic's
    store or via the likes of Forbidden Planet.
    The folks at Iconic previously brought us three eyebulging replica
    Thunderbirds vehicles. Yep. We've had Thunderbirds 1, 2,
    and 3 presented in fantastic prop form. They've been amazing.
    And again, they don't come cheap. But a certified Anderson fan
    just can't afford to miss out... And Iconic have devious plans
    to bankrupt us all, because there are a line of Thunderbirds
    puppets under construction now too... Plus iconic vehicles
    from Space: 199, U.F.O. and more. Wow.. Wow... Wow...

    Phew-ee. March really has been a mad month for collectors.
    But even now, as we close in on April, there's still more amazing
    Brit-toon art to fanfare here at Toonhound - as you'll soon see... 

Forbidden Planet


    Mad March Art - Part 3   

    Here we go again with some more Spring releases...

    This time, we're trumpeting some brand new giclees, prints and
    canvasses from the folks at Riviere Publishing. All the editions
    profiled below are available right now, from Lollipop Animation.

    "When Custard Cried With Laughter" "When Roobarb Outsmarted Custard"
    First up is that great green wobbling pooch, Roobarb, and his
    pink pal Custard. Riviere's range is ushered in with two rather
    desirable giclee prints. The storyboards/sketches stripped beneath
    the key art are a super touch. "When Custard Cried With Laughter"
    and "When Roobarb Outsmarted Custard" measure 46cm x 30cm
    and both are restricted to just 250 numbered editions...

    "When the Snow Came Tumbling"

    Riviere have also produced a selection of hugely affordable canvas
    editions. Canvas art has become all the rage of late, and our pink
    and green stars look just great in this format. They're big colourful
    wall-fillers, these, and they're available in a variety of sizes. But
    some folks will still simply want a traditional, old school print to
    hang on the wall, irrespective of edition sizes, or fashion trends,
    so Riviere have made the same images available as down-to-earth,
    happy-go-lucky 35.5cm x 28cm prints, too - Yay!

    Now. Let's move on from wobbling teatime wonders, to the clean lines
    of Nutwood. The great John Harold has put his signature to a divine
    selection of giclees, prints and canvasses starring Rupert Bear and

    We'll start with the giclees. These feature two panel and four panel
    reproductions and each piece is restricted to just 200 numbered and
    signed editions. What's more, they're completely beautiful things.
    The Hound's favourites include "Spooky Surprise". That one's a
    28cm x 28cm delight:

    "Spooky Surprise"

    And "Flight of the Firebird" is a super example of a two-panel edition,
    measuring 58cm x 36cm:

    "Flight of the Firebird"

    Then, as with Roobarb, there are umpteen different canvasses and
    standard prints to choose from, in all sorts of sizes and prices.
    But the best of the bunch by far is this wondrous Wintery thing:

    "A Yuletide Promenade"

    This is "A Yuletide Promenade". It's a fine art giclee print on canvas
    measuring 60cm x 40cm. It's taken from the endpapers of the 2006
    Annual, and it's restricted to just 100 hand signed editions. It's
    Harold at his very best indeed, and it's got an ethereal twilight feel
    that's just a joy to behold...

    Ah me... So much merry art, and not enough pennies in my wallet
    for them all. The glut of new toon goodies this Spring is really rather
    extraordinary. And we're still not finished, as you'll see very soon!...

                                                           More: Lollipop Animation

    Bakewell tart   

    Do excuse the cheeky headline, but you see, Wallace has a
    new sweetheart. That's Wallace, as in, "Wallace & Gromit" of
    course. And this particular sweetheart is Miss Piella Bakewell,
    who's costarring in the duo's latest animated outing from
    Nick Park, Aardman Animation and the BBC.

    In "Trouble 'at Mill" Wallace and Gromit's West Wallaby Street
    home is transformed into a Dough-to-Door bakery, complete with
    a grinding windmill on the roof. The new film was announced last
October, and Piella also had a name check in the press releases.
    But, but, but... whilst her name was there in black and white, the
    voice behind her had not yet been cast...

    Sally Lindsay

    Well now it has. I mean, "she" has. And stepping up to the
    microphone is the lovely Sally Lindsay. She became a household
    name here in the UK a wee while back, when she played Shelley
    Unwin the reet mouthy barmaid in the ITV soap "Coronation Street".
    Apparently, Nick Park picked her out after hearing her on
    the radio. And it must be said, she's the perfect voice choice.

    But hang on. In the midst of the BBC's report, there appears to
    be a title change. The new film is no longer being billed as
    "Trouble 'at Mill". Instead, we're told it's now called "A Matter
    of Loaf and Death". Which is a fab title change, indeed. Presumably,
    the original billing was just too colloquial for the world market. The
    new Powell/Pressburger spoof works just as well, mind.

    It's not the first time Nick Park and Aardman have swopped titles
    mid-production. If you recall, "Curse of the Were-rabbit" was
    originally billed as "The Great Vegetable Plot". But what ever
    title is eventually used, the new toon sounds like
    a - um - breadwinner...

    Thomas Land  (15.03.08)

    Toot-toot! - Thomas the Tank Engine now has his very own UK theme
    park. Thomas Land is a £5.5m theme park based in Drayton Manor Park
    near Tamworth, where visitors can take a ride on the Troublesome Truck
    or the Runaway Coaster, they can stop by Cranky's Drop Tower, and
    brush up their skills at Terence's Driving School. They can take a trip
    with Thomas himself, on to to Drayton Park Zoo, or pause for a cuppa
    at Mrs Kindley's Kitchen, or the Knapford Station Cafe and if they're
    lucky, they might spy the Fat Controller himself, strolling around the

    Here's what the BBC have to say.

    The theme park doors open to the public today, March 15th. And
    if it's anything as popular as its Japanese predecessor, well, it's sure
    to be a chuffing success...

    Theme parks can be very risky ventures, of course. Witness the rise
    and fall of Mr Blobbyland. And for a whole lot of years, there was
    talk about a Dan Dare theme park that, alas, came to nowt. But
    all this theme park chatter gets you wondering.. Imagine.. West
    Wallaby Street... a Bristol-based theme park
where you get to meet
    Wallace and Gromit and friends, and take a crazy ride on some
    of their latest hare-brained inventions... Or Cosgrove Hall
    World, in Chorlton-cum-Hardy, where you're greeted by a giggling
    Happiness Dragon, before you take a spin on a wild Wheeliworld
    ride.. or Beanotown.. or a real-life Trumptonshire, or... or..
Thomas Land

    Mad March Art - Part 2   

    More March madness now, with our second round-up of collectable
    goodies, hitting stores any day now...

    What we have here are some of the latest releases from Robert Harrop
    Designs. No one does this kind of figurine quite like Harrop. Their
    ongoing collections continue to amaze and delight.

    Mr Benn & The Clown Car

    This year's Spring collection is ushered in via two beautiful new
    Mr Benn pieces. "Mr Benn & The Clown Car" is restricted to just 350 
    colourful editions. And it's supreme. And I want one. Now. Before they
    all sell out. Fortunately, its companion, "The Costume Shop Front"
    has no such restriction on it, being an open-ended release. But
    that doesn't make it any less desirable!

   The Costume Shop Front

    It's a great idea, that, producing facades from our favourite toon
    series, to sit behind the indivual 3D figures. And it's a notion that's
    taken even further with a brand-new Ivor the Engine collectable.
    It's "Ivor & The Signal Box", in which Peter Firmin's delicious artwork
    is transformed into three stand-up facades. There are just 600 editions
    out there, on the collectors market. And if you spin down to our first
    round-up, you'll see that this is the same artwork used in that
    "On the Railway" giclee we've been salivating over. Last year's
    ltd edition Ivor figurine has long sold out from most dealers,
    so it's a safe bet this new release will quickly follow suit:

    Ivor The Engine & The Signal Box

    Robert Harrop have so many top toon creations on their books, it's
    always difficult choosing ones to fanfare here. And to make
    matters worse, they're constantly introducing new ranges to
    get us hopping and huffing. Due very soon is a magnificent new
    range of Paddington Bear figures, in celebration of his 50th
    anniversary . And it's not just any old Paddington here, either.
    Oh no. This new range is based upon our favourite bear's FilmFair
    appearances. There are four introductory pieces, including the
    edition below, which depicts Paddington's magnificent
    rendition of "Singin' In The Rain", as witnessed in his film
    special "Paddington Goes to the Movies". Ain't it great?

    Paddington Bear: Singin' In The Rain

    Well, as great as that is, there's yet one more crowning delight
    for us to fanfare here. You see, the Harrop team have also produced
    an amazing Paddington Musical Box. Wind it up to hear that famous
    FilmFair theme tune:

     A Paddington Music Box!

    Now take heed. There's only 1000 of these blighters available, so
    get 'em whilst you can!

    It will be very interesting to see how this range develops. Given how
    Harrop have started producing those lovely new facades... well..
    Paddington will surely lend itself to that format very handsomely indeed...

    Meanwhile, as if all that wasn't enough, there's a brand-new range in the
    pipeline for Autumn this year that will really get you in the collecting
    "moog".. Tee-hee... But they'll be more on that one at a later date...

    As always, you can purchase all the new Harrop releases, and all 
    their current ranges and pieces, from the fine folks at Boojog

                                    More: Robert Harrop  Boojog Collectables


    A Likeaball record  (12.03.08)

    The Likeballs have been making records recently. Last week,
    they joined forces with 1,200 school kids from 212 schools, up and
    down the country, who clubbed together in an effort to break the
    keepy uppy World Record... And they duly broke it, with 634 children
    successfully keeping their uppies - er - "uppy" simultaneously for
    10 seconds...

    The record attempt was all for Sport Relief, folks, with all the
    kids involved raising money for the big event. You can read more
    about their endeavours here.

    The Likeaballs - now on DVD!

    Oh, and whilst we're talking about those Likeaballs, you might
    want know that their first DVD has just hit stores.
The Likeaballs:
   Kick Off
features five episodes for our viewing pleasure, and the
    extras include some early production line art for this popular

Sport Relief  The Likeaballs

    Mad March Art - Part 1   

    Wow. March is shaping up to be a busy month for Brit-toon collectors.
There are several new giclee ranges launching at our favourite galleries,
    over the coming weeks, and a bunch of new limited edition figures to
    get super-excited about ...

    Here's the first of the bunch, then. It's a wonderful collection of
    SmallFilms giclees, coming to us from the folks at The Animation
    Art Gallery. There are prints from Bagpuss, The Clangers and
    Ivor the Engine to look out for. Many are signed too, by Oliver
    Postgate and Peter Firmin. How fab is that?

    "On the Railway"

    The Hound has a particular liking for the two Ivor the Engine prints.
    Tea With Ivor and On the Railway measure approx. 22"x19", and
    are restricted to just 200 editions. Peter Firmin's artwork here is just
    exquisite, and "On the Railway" is already heading for The Hound's
    kennel wall - Woof!...

    "The Ballet Shoe"

    Oh, but, the two larger Bagpuss prints are classy too. And like those
    Ivor editions, The Ballet Shoe and The Pilots are also signed and
    so very desirable. If you're on a tighter budget, there's also a
    smaller Bagpuss giclee, and two fun Clangers designs for your
    consideration - including a cute pair of Froglets:


    Drop by the Gallery now to see the entire range in all its glory. But,
    but, but... These are just the first few tempting trinkets in this
    month's ongoing round-up, as you'll soon see!

                                                   More: The Animation Art Gallery


   200 at last!  

    This time last year, The Hound was celebrating the imminent arrival of
    a very jolly milestone. He was closing in rapidly on the big 200. That is
    to say, the 200th animated series to have entered the TvToons index.
    He had his streamers and party poppers at the ready... The cake was
    in the oven...

    And then, fate intervened. 2007 has been a ridiculously busy year.
    I've been pulled everywhichway, offline and on, and the amount of new
    additions to the various indexes have slowed to a mere trickle of late...

    But finally, twelve months later than planned. We've done it. We've hit
    that double century, courtesy of Roger Hargreaves and those fantastic
    Little Miss, who joined the site this week. And it's rather apt because,
    Mr Hargreaves was a masive influence on this dawg's formative years.
    His Mr Men books were my first love when I was five, and their
    elegant simplicity encouraged me to pick up a pen for myself and
    get drawing... Why, those are just felt pen drawings.. I could do
    what he did... Easy-peasy...

    But of course, that's the beauty of the Mr Men. They are, in fact,
    defiantly sophisticated. Oh for sure, my young hand could draw a
    big wobbly shape, colour it purple and call it "Mr Greedy". But
    Mr Hargreaves' original had such splendid control to it. A perfect
    smile... dinky little fingers on the tummy... I spent a whole Summer
    drawing Mr Men over and over, but they were never as good as
    those originals.... and maybe I'm not alone, given the furore that's
    been building over "The Mr Men Show"!

    Anyways, let's not get mired in that debate. Instead, let's celebrate
    that 200th addition to the index. Of course, there are still plenty of
    missing shows - Roger Hargreaves' "Timbuctoo" amongst them -
    but you can bet the index will keep growing, slowly but surely.
    As long as they keep makin' them, Toonhound will keep on
    Till next time!

        Pooch says 'Stay tooned!'

      home »   news archive »    

all characters © their respective creators and licensees / F2008