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Toonhound presents...






British TV series

      The Raggy Dolls - from Melvyn Jaconson and Yorkshire TV

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  Raggy Dolls
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   producers: Yorkshire TV
   animation: cel animation
     episodes: 112 x 10mins

    "The Raggy Dolls, Raggy Dolls, are happy to just to be,
     Raggy Dolls, Raggy Dolls, dolls like you and me!"

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     Made imperfectly, like you and me, the seven Raggy Dolls were rejects from
     Mr Grimes' Soft Toy factory cruelly cast aside into the Reject Bin. But of course,
     these seven fellows were the most special toys of all, coming to life when no one
     was around and embarking on numerous adventures wherein their disabilities
     were put to constructive use.

    The seven original Raggy Dolls!

     The seven original dolls were:

     Hi-Fi - a talking toy, with a st-st-stammer...
     Back-To-Front - handy man doll with a head the wrong way round...
     Lucy - a doll with faulty threads and loose limbs...
     Dotty - splashed with blue paint...
     Princess - dressed in rags instead of riches...
     Claude - made for export to France, but he missed the ferry...
     Sad Sack - too stuffed, and hence, too pricey to make

    "Raggy Dolls" was the brainchild of Melvyn Jacobson, and the catchy theme,
     voices and stories were provided by that ex-Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band member,
     part-time Monty Python star, and sometime Rutle, Neil Innes. It was a sweet
     series, attempting to show kids that although we're not all perfect, everyone's
     got something to offer.

     Old dolls/new dolls

     After the first 26 episodes had been filmed, Yorkshire TV reassessed
     the series, and in what was to become a "first" for the broadcaster, an
     independent production company - Orchid Productions -  was asked to
     spruce up the show. Amongst the personnel was first-time director
     Mark Mason, who brought to life new characters including a scarecrow
     called Pumpernickel, and an eighth Raggy Doll called Ragamuffin.

     Incredible as it may sound, in all, 112 "Raggy Dolls" episodes were made!

     Orchid Productions closed its doors in 1995. As for Mark Mason, he runs
     his own self-titled studio now, handling work on shows like Microscopic
     Milton, Angel Mouse, William's Wish Wellingtons and Toonhound fave,
     the wonderfully daft Philbert Frog.

     A trio of Raggy Dolls books...
    » The opening credits show us that Princess is the last of the original
        Raggy Dolls to take up residence in the Reject Bin...
» Raggy fans should hunt down Boxtree's tie-in books published around 1990
        and featuring art by series artist Steve Smallman - at least 8 titles were

» Many people confuse the Raggy Dolls with Annie the rag doll and Teddy the
        stuffed bear from "The Forgotten Toys" special and series (1995-1997). But
        although some of the talent behind the camera was the same, the production
        was a wholly independent creation adapted from the books by James
        Stevenson. What's more, Annie and Teddy were merely "forgotten" and
        not "rejected"...
       Mr Grimes in "The Raggy Dolls"
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    The Flying Machine              Roman Ramblers
    The Big Top                       The Great Expedition
    The Pigeon Race                 The Twitcher
    The War of the Wizards       Too Bossy
    The Special Offer                The Toy Fair
    The Litter Bugs                   Ragamuffin
    The Dark Wood                  Grand Prix Dolls
    The Funfair                        Fond Farewells
    Too Many Cooks                 Doctor Dolls
    After the Storm                  Old-Fashioned Dolls
    Christmas Dolls                   Lady Luck
    The Trouble with Claude       Invisible Dolls
    Happy Binday                     The Great Outdoors
    The Genius                        The Lonely Echo                  
    Speaking French                  Homeward Bound
    The Winter Swan                Railway Dolls
    The Terrible Twins              Windy Weather
    Sports Day                        Purple Diamonds
    To the Rescue                    The Giant Bumblebee
    Spring Toys                       The Return of the Roo 
    A Trip to the Sea                The Boomerang Games
    The Royal Tour                   Down on the Farm
    Onion Soup                        The Royal County Show
    Moving House                     Open Day
    Factory Mice                      The Town Carnival
    A Trip to France                  Cave Dolls
    Hot Air Balloon                    Barbeque Ball
    Ghosts                              High and Dry
    The Tree House                  Smugglers Cave
    The Memory Machine           William the Conker
    Doll Overboard                    Bonnie Scotland
    The Unlikely Hedgehog         On the Town    
    Easter Bunny                     Danger, Men at Work
    In Days of Old                    Sight-Seeing Dolls
    The Old Clock Lady             Dolls on Wheels 
    Peace and Quiet                 Robot Canteen
    We Are Not Amused            Mister Mole
    The Lost Puppy                  The Empty House
    Horse Sense                      Mon Repose
    The Terrible Storm              The Runaway Monkey
    The Stolen Parrot               Lucy's Greenhouse
    Crazy Golf                         The Horrible Princesses
    Pumpernickle's Party            The Town Gala
    So Safari                           Mr Grimes in Love
    Making Faces                     Wedding Bells
   The Old Windmill                  Off on a Honeymoon
   The Little Carthorse             A Mediterranean Cruise
    Making Jam                        Stormy Weather
    The Teddy Bear's Picnic       When in Rome    
    Mr Marmalade                     Just a Minotaur
    The Treasure Hunt              The Eyes of Rani
    Rupert the Roo                   Elephants Do Forget
    Witch is Which?                 What's the Time
    Bonfire Night                     The Russian Doll
    Rainbow's End                    Bored
    Lost in Space


     The Raggy Dolls on DVD

     UK DVD
The Raggy Dolls: Series One
                Region 2 / thirteen episodes / Revelation Films / June 2010

     UK DVD
The Raggy Dolls: Series Two
                Region 2 / thirteen episodes / Revelation Films / Oct 2010

     UK DVD
The Raggy Dolls: Series Three
                Region 2 / thirteen episodes / Revelation Films / Feb 2011

     UK DVD
The Raggy Dolls: Series Four
                Region 2 / thirteen episodes / Revelation Films / June 2011

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    Original series credits

     series created by Melvyn Jacobson

    producer:                  Joy Whitby

    writer:                        Neil Innes
    music & script
               Neil Innes
    original drawings:      Steve Smallman
    animation director:    John Marsden
    & animation:             Roy Evans
    graphic design:         Michael Gilbert
    rostrum camera:       Paul Allen, Mike Gates,
                                   Mark Wright
    sound dubbing:         Keith Quirk
    film editor:               Roy Lafbery   
    voices:                    Neil Innes

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     On the web

     Mark Mason Animation 
     This site is great. Mark Mason identifies his company's contribution
     to the later Raggy Dolls series...

     Neil Innes
     All about the man....

     Neil Innes - biography
     A handy biography page here, for those who need more doo-dah...

      index »    previous »   next »

© Melvyn Jacobson / Yorkshire TV / F2011