Friday, 24 May 2013

Avenger Penguins

Avenger Penguins may seem like an unabashed parody of Biker Mice From Mars, but that was the beauty of Cosgrove Hall - they had the ability to poke fun at the latest "fads" going on in America with a slight British spin on them in the humour dept.

This 1993 series focused on Marlon, Bluey and Rocky, a trio of bike-riding penguins who protected Big City (no relation ;-) ) from the evil mastermind Caractacus. P Doom with whatever creature he was able to create from the Monstertron.

It really is a mad little show, but in a good way. There's no end to the in-jokes and pop culture references that went on here, likewise with the kooky customers who visited Bella's Cafe for a Haddock Milkshake - which included the brilliant Badly-Drawn Brothers. Cosgrove Hall proved it wasn't shy in keeping up with the times and giving us more characters alongside Danger Mouse, Count Duckula and Victor and Hugo to adore. Heck, even "Planet Cute" makes a cameo in a Penguins episode...!

By this time also, long-time writer Brian Trueman had left Cosgrove Hall to spread his wings, which left Jimmy Hibbert to handle the "new crew" who had come on board. And having watched both seasons, it's safe to say he and his team did a very good job here, which included Roger Stennett and animator-turned-writer Malcolm McGookin. It was also one of the last of CH's shows that was cel-animated as by this time, all animation studios were slowly converting to digitally-painted methods to speed up production.

And what other animated series could include the vocal talents of Mike McShane and Lorelei King as part of the voice cast? Whether it was the heroes, heroines, villains or minor characters, Mike and Lorelei did wonders alongside Jimmy and, newcomer at the time, Rob Rackstraw, who would later contribute vast amount of voice work for Bob the Builder among other productions.

Throw in a kick-ass theme song by Paul Young, and you've another reason why 90's Animated Shows were considered the Silver Age. So "Bike Up!" and nab the 3-disc DVD Collection if you can!


2 comments:

  1. Really enjoyed working on this series. Roger Stennett

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  2. Really enjoyed working on this series. Roger Stennett

    ReplyDelete