MITTEL-EUROPEAN GNOMIC adventures of Paulus, who lived in a tree trunk, resembled Popeye in red dungarees, and was menaced by Eucalypta the witch. Assorted examples of moth-eaten taxidermy served duty as his woodland associates. Imported and translated (to say nothing of dubbed with sub-Goon Show voices) from the Dutch, specifically the pen of Jean Dulieu, who not only created and wrote the long-running cartoon strip on which this was based, but made and manipulated all the puppets himself. As a result… Christ, the thing’s hideous. Misshapen fragments of fowl and sightless lumps of Plaster of Paris move about with disconcertingly jerky motion, making the show’s rather routine “bad witch gets foiled by ace chums” plots appear sinister and claustrophobic, scarring many a child’s psyche in ways Bagpuss could never dream of. The theme’s lyrics (sung by the upper registers of a plummy children’s choir) are the easiest part: “Let’s take a holiday, there’s a little wood where we can stay/Paulus, the little wood gnome welcomes you to his home/Crackers and Hoppy are there/Hoo-Roo and the Bear/Snatch, Bristles and Gregory too/They’re waiting all for you/Something’s brewing, that’s quite plain/The witches cauldron’s boiling again/Paulus, you’d better take care/She’s out to get you/She’s up to get you/She’s out to get you, beware!” Indeed.
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Creamguide's Pick of the Day
We’re pleased to see this series turn up on heavy rotation on this channel because we’ve always been very fond of it. We first saw it via the frequent BBC2 repeats in the early nineties, after the success of The Naked Gun, though you may have caught it earlier depending on where you live because in the eighties, when it had just been shown in the USA, it was picked up by some ITV regions – some even showed it in primetime – while some didn’t screen it at all. We’ve all seen it now, but we’ll happily see it again
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Points of View
- In 'Red Hand Gang, The', Ged Burke says: "I rememember this show well when I was a kid."
- In 'Clangers, The', Richard Freeman says: "IT RETURNS!!!!"
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- In 'Words and Pictures', Graham Pearson says: "Watch the episode of Words and Pictures in which Henry tells the story of a pumpkin scaring members of the public until a pig thwarted him...."
- In 'PICK OF THE DAY', Richard16378 says: "You did mention this a few days ago, it was one show I was too young to click with when it was first on. The titles & music do feel like..."