Honeycomb Animation for TSW animation: 2D animation episodes:
26 x 5mins
never steal - that's what we say
We only use what's thrown away!"
The Mouse Code
The Tube Mice live in London's ever-busy
Underground system, at Oxford Circus,
from where they spend their days travelling
the network in the hunt for fun and
frolics. They get around alongside
the humans, via miniature doors and carriages
in the tube trains, and their tunnel homes
and rooms are constructed of old bits of
Underground trash and litter, seconded
under the terms of their oft-quoted
The principal mice are a Bubble, Squeak,
Vernon and Toaster and this jolly
gang are introduced en masse in the very
first episode "We are the Tube Mice".
In the next four episodes we learn more
about each mouse, and we meet their
other mouse friends Mickelmouse, Derby,
Bo Heemy and Rapper. Stories take
us to Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament,
London Zoo and even a strange
"Tube Mice" reached our
screens around the same time as those Ratties.
The series features wild watercoloured
background angles and perspectives.
akin to some crazy childrens' drawing.
The scenery is littered with old drinks
cans, sweet wrappers and rubbish,
as well as inumerable disembodied human
legs which step through frame, over
and past the mice stars as they progress
on to trains, or up and down escalators
and tunnels. The mouse tunnels
incorporate old drinks straws for
piping, cotton reels and suchlike, in a Wombling
kind-of-way. Meanwhile, the mice stars themselves have noses
that are constantly twitching - or "boiling",
if you want to use the proper
animation term. It's the same technique
employed by Bob Godfrey for Roobarb,
and it's used to give extra life to the characters.
"Tube Mice" boasts the voices
of Dennis Waterman and George Cole in the
roles of Toaster and Vernon, and the
characters are an unashamed copy of
the roles they played in "Minder",
which was a big hit series for ITV back then.
This spritely series was obviously super-cheap
to produce and many sequences
are repeated en masse: Hence we regularly
witness Squeak having a jolly notion,
mice businessmen heading down the
escalators, Bubble and Squeak going up,
the mice on the same blustery tube
platform, and the mice entering their tube
train via the same door, with the
very same nougat box seat on display.
The tight budget may also have extended
to the scripts, with at least two stories
featuring an escape from a high fall
by means of a hankerchief parachute!
"Tube Mice" was a very early
production from Simon and Sara Bor and
Honeycomb Animation, who are currently
having great success with their
BAA winning series Grizzly Tales
for Gruesome Kids, and the tales of Binka
the black and white cat...
He's a posh Field Mouse who gets lost in
the system whilst searching
for his Great Uncle Pipsqueak's
inheritance. He enjoys his adventures
so much he decides to stay.
She harks from the 31st floor of a tower
block. But an encounter with
Vernon and Toaster sees her and them
being chased by a cat in to
the Tube system.
A scavenger mouse in Teddy-Boy gear, he's
always on the scrounge
for hooky goods and deals.
Bug-eyed Toaster follows his nose and his
stomach, and Vernon,
slap-bang in to trouble all the time.
He's a pin-striped mouse MP at the Mouse
This uniformed atrtendant looks after the
platforms, when he's awake!
She thinks she's an artist. She was freed
from a lab cage by
the gang in episode four, "Escape".
He's a street-wise mouse who "talks"
in rapping riddles.
Tube Mice episodes
We are the Tube Mice
From the 31st Floor
Mouses of Parliament
The series first aired on ITV, on
5th September 1988...
created, designed and directed by Simon
and Sara Bor
written by Simon and Sara Bor and Dave
Paul Stewart-Laing music: "Tube
Mice theme" by
Moran and Simon Bor
opening theme "Mousa" by Mike Amatt
music by Dave moran animation:
Simon Bor, Sara Bor, Sarah Vincent,
Roberts, Martin Collis,
Osbourn, Clive Dawson artwork: Lind
Marmont, Judy Beake, Hester Smith,
Deborah Crow, Pauline DeWitt,
Croft, Caroline Cole backgrounds: Alison
Rivers rec enginer: Simon
Capes dub engineer: Trevor
Barber camera: Chris
Williams, Matthew Ferris editor: Peter
Weekes voices: Rupert
George Cole (Vernon)