Robbie reins in an Emmy (25.11.03)
Congratulations all round today for Robbie
The Reindeer's triumph at
the International Emmys. Robbie's second
film, 'Legend Of The Lost Tribe'
was given the award in the Children's and
Young People category and
this shiny trophy will no doubt sit comfortably
next to the BAFTA his
first animated special - 'Hooves Of Fire'
This second animated offering premiered
on the BBC last Christmas.
The voice cast included Ardal O'Hanlon, David
Attenborough, Rob Brydon,
Rickey Gervais, Steve Coogan, Harry Enfield,
Jane Horrocks, Sean Hughes,
Jeff Goldblum, Alistair McGowan, Natalie
Imbruglia and Paul Whitehouse.
'Legend Of The Lost Tribe' was directed
by Peter Peake, who previously
brought us that gratuitously gleeful short
film 'Pib And Pob', and the
Oscar and BAFTA-nominated film 'Humdrum'.
Producer Jacqueline White
came to the Robbie films via 'The Morph
Files' and 'Rex The Runt'.
The film was executive produced by the 'lovely'
Richard Curtis, with
all net profits accrued to BBC Worldwide
being handed over to
Comic Relief - Gawd bless 'em...
Robbie's Emmy success follows in the illustrious
footsteps of FilmFair's
'Paddington' (1981) and Cosgrove Hall's 'Fool
Of The World And The Flying
Ship' (1991). Although, if you want to get picky,
you could argue that they
were fully-fledged Emmy wins, whereas Robbie's
is an International award.
But hey, quit with the negatives, an Emmy is
an Emmy folks and a fine and
very rare thing it is, too. Our Robbie is
definitely a reindeer with
hooves of gold...
The trailer is GO! (24.11.03)
Now online for our viewing pleasure is the
first proper trailer for the
live-action 'Thunderbirds' movie from Working
Title/Universal. And, well,
it's certainly a bright and busy affair. Take
a look for yourself over on
Title's web site. There's also some stills and behind the scenes
gumph to gander.
Interesting to see how those fx shots of
Thunderbird 3 taking to the
skies that were highlighted on the web and
on the BBC back in Summer
have now woven their way into this first
'true' trailer, plus a whole lot
more besides, like Thunderbird 5 experiencing
some serious collateral
damage and a flying FAB-1 (as identified
So is this a 'hit'? - The Hound can't tell
you. Frankly, it feels weird,
watching 'real' people operating those big plastic toys.
Folks like Yours
Truly remember the puppets so well. The film
is aimed at an audience
unfamiliar with the series, so maybe they'll
'dig' it. Let's hope so.
Regardless of the film and its merits or
failings, it's still a little sad
to see the demise of them there puppets
- indeed - any puppets from
our screens big and small nowadays. Sure
we have Basil Brush, and
there'll always be those Muppets fooling
around, but you just can't beat
those larger-than-life Anderson-style puppets
in extraordinary adventures.
It's difficult to put your finger on the
appeal, but it's probably just the
heightened sense of the fantastic you get
from that kind of show.
It's so - well - dynamic.
Oh well. Reminiscing aside, look out for
more 'T'birds' movie news soon...
Who's here (14.11.03)
Great news for 'Doctor Who' fans this week,
because the all-new animated
'Who' toon has at last materialized onto BBC-Cult.
As headlined back in
the new adaptation stars Richard E Grant as the time-travelling doc.
The toon has been animated by the folks at
Cosgrove Hall and the
production follows in the footsteps of their previous
with 'Ghosts of Albion'.
The new story is called 'The Scream of the
Shalka' and it's been
produced to coincide with 'Doctor Who's 40th
Joining Richard E Grant for the adventure
are some topnotch actors
including Derek Jacobi and Diana Quick.
The webcast runs for six
episodes in total, with a new episode being
made available each
week. Beam on over to http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/doctorwho
now for the
All together now: 'Oo-ee-oooh...'
Bloomin' Briggs (11.11.03)
Hmph. What's this here book thingy, then?
- A brand new guide to
the works of Raymond Briggs - Bah!
'Blooming Books' is a big new book by Nicolette
Jones, looking at the
works of one of The Hound's favourite authors
and illustrators, Raymond Briggs.
It's a weighty volume, split into sections and identifying
the underlying themes
of his work. Similar to the kind of thing The
Hound has been doing on his mini-site,
actually (but hey, who's quibbling?). As well
as a foreword from Mr Briggs, there
is also some previously unseen material, including
preparatory drawings for
published titles and work from several planned sequels
to 'Fungus the Bogeyman'.
Plenty of top material to 'dig' through, then, and
a must-buy for fans of his work.
'Blooming Books' is out now, courtesy of Bodley
Head, and you can
this here link to stop by Amazon.co.uk if you like, and help a
hardworking cyber chappie earn a crust-or-two
Of course, 'Fungus' will be on everyone's lips
again very soon because
TV adaptation with Martin Clunes is due to be
aired this Winter...
Leaping Leopards! (10.11.03)
As if the return of 'Beano' favourite 'Billy The
Cat' last month wasn't enough,
comics fan can now lick their paws in anticipation
of another returnee to the
comics scene. Young Billy Farmer, aka 'The Leopard
of Lime Street' is being
reprinted in all his action-packed glory in the pages of
'Starscape' - Meow!
Billy Farmer was The Leopardman, and he was a
'Buster' comic star of the
1970s. Scratched by a radioactive big cat, Billy
acquired a certain feline sixth
sense and agility. When the need arose he'd don
his leopard catsuit and take
to the rooftops of Selbridge, thwarting ne'erdowells
and bullies, but always
seemingly on the verge of exposing his secret
identity. And folks like 'Selbridge
Sun' news editor Thaddeus Clegg and Chief Inspector
Craddock were determined
to have that identity revealed. The strip first appeared
in 1976, and stories were
printed and reprinted off and on until the mid-1980s.
And 'Starscape'? Well, that's a new sci-fi, fantasy
and superhero comic
magazine from Superherostore Comics. Superhero's Christian
tells us they
have acquired repro rights going back to Billy's
very first origin strip, and that
Mr Farmer will be presented alongside new work
from a tasty selection of
2000AD, Marvel and DC Thomson writers and artists.
The first issue hits selected comics stores very
soon and can also be
purchased online direct from the Superherostore
web site. You can choose
between a traditional printed A4 format or
a thoroughly modern pdf file.
And just to whet your comics appetite even more
thoroughly, The Hound
has been told there are plans to rerprint other
top Fleetway toons from that
golden era too - Yummy!
My money's on 'March of the Mighty Ones', a top strip
robot dinosaurs which predated 'Jurassic Park'
by a decade-and-a-half...
That's yer lot, Wullie (07.11.03)
Och, will you look at that? - Compal's latest
comics auction has been
announced today, my, and there are some splendid
lots there for the
serious DC Thomson collector.
First up are the first six 'Oor Wullie' books,
dating from 1939 to 1955.
Very smart, but you'll need deep pockets
for these. The first edition
alone has an estimate of £2000 - £2500.
In addition, Compal are offering the earliest
piece of 'Oor Wullie' artwork
ever offered at auction. The piece dates
from 1939, as drawn by Dudley
Watkins for 'The Sunday Post' and the estimate
is set at £900 - £1200.
Methinks the wee lad might go a tad higher
than that, though.
A few early issues of the 'The Dandy' are
also listed: issues 4, 6, 7, 8
and 9 with estimates between £200
- £400. And then there's a tasty
original 'Desperate Dan' strip by Dudley Watkins,
dating from 1939.
Like the ' Wullie' art, this is said to
be the earliest piece ever offered
at auction, with an estimate of £550
Meanwhile, 'Topper' fans will notice the
first edition from 1953,
as well as issues number 2 and 3, all with
no reserve on them.
The Compal auction closes Thursday November
27, 2003 at 8pm GMT.
So what are you waiting for? - Get to their
web site and start perusing
Dust storm (03.11.03)
'Monkey Dust' returns to BBC3 this week, on the
crest of a whole new wave
of controversy. For those who don't know, 'Dust'
is the BBC's politically
barbed cartoon show, segueing together loud and
lewd animated skits
about current affairs, violence, sex and celebrity
and daring to tread
on toes that many would prefer to avoid altogether.
As reported previously,
the first series upset its commissioners so much
they pulled the tie-in web site and banned the
release of advance screener
tapes. Now the new series is in even hotter water for
its savage lampooning
of BBC director-general Greg Dyke. One particular
skit has reportedly been
reedited after it was revealed that a Dyke-like buffoon
is seen staggering
drunkenly around a lavish television party and
swearing profusely at all
and sundry, including a young boy. (The new version
keeps the drunkenness
but loses the explicit effing and blinding...)
Coo. There's nowt like a little controversy to
get your show in the papers,
is there? - The furor should guarantee a few more viewers
for the first episode
'Monkey Dust' starts Tuesday 4th November, 9.30pm
The Hound has never liked
clutter on his web site, so Toonhound has nearly
always been free of advertising and affiliate pop-ups.
I use the word 'nearly'
because there have actually been three exceptions.
The first was a rotten
tie-in with eBay which ended in tears when agreements
were breached and
coding went awry. And the second is one that's
still with the site today.
It's that little Hitbox ad box that sits and flashes
up links to casinos and
mortgages. It's a rather distasteful little critter,
but a necessary inclusion
because it enables Yours Truly to track visitors
without having to find
a chunk of money each month.
The third is an association which no one can complain
about, and that's
those links to ToonsToGo.com.
That particular site is run by myself
and, frankly, if I want to associate Toonhound
with our nifty little online
store, then that's up to me. So there. And anyway,
The hound has always
kept that particular association as low-key as
possible. Indeed, too low
key for some tastes. Many business associates
have urged me to splash
ToonsToGo around the site a bit more.
Well, from this month, there's a fourth association
for you to keep your eye
on. That's because The Hound has finally bitten
the bullet and signed up
to be an Amazon.co.uk affiliate. Now hold on,
don't get your knickers in a twist
just yet. This, like the rest, will be a very
low-key affair. But from time to
time I will indeed be trumpeting a link-or-two
through to a relevant Amazon
product. Why? Well, it simply makes sense, is
all. There are many items
out there which ToonsToGo doesn't stock, or can't
stock, and folks like
yourself might want to purchase. Why not nudge
you in the right direction?
At the end of the day, The Hound pours an awful
lot of time and money
in to Toonhound for no money - gratis - for free.
ToonsToGo is ticking
along very nicely, but Toonhound remains a wholly
separate entity which,
right now, doesn't put anything back into The
Hound's not-so-deep pockets.
Rest assured, there will not be affiliate video
or DVD links on every page.
But yes, there will be a link like the 'Blooming
Books' one every now and
again, when the time is right. And let's face
it, a new book release like
that is utterly valid here, and it's utterly relevant
to tempt you in to buying it.
Wouldn't you agree?
Till next time!