Budgie the Little Helicopter is one of these, who actually has quite a regal back-story.
Jimbo and the Jet Set, Dilbert, Harold the Helicopter - but Budgie had such an appeal with his airborne adventures that the Sleepy Kids Company and Fred Wolf Films got together to create a series from the books, to be broadcast on CITV (UK) and Fox Kids (US) respectively.
Based in Dublin, Ireland, the quality of Fred Wolf Films's shows are just an example of what can still be achieved with traditional animation today - since they helped bring to life James Bond Jr, Dino Babies, Disney's The Wuzzles or the 1990 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. So it's little wonder why the character designs in Budgie have such a Disney-type feel to them, but the setting of Harfield Airfield was strictly British nonetheless.
Another remarkable note of this series was that all three seasons (bar a few episodes) were written by Cosgrove Hall veteran Brian Trueman. You know it's a Trueman episode when there are chunks of continuity, adventure, imagination, research and comedy - but above all, true characterisation throughout.
|Budgie and Pippa|
Despite production running between 1994 - 1997, the series is still being shown today overseas, and has done extremely well with its success. Merchandise galore included tie-in books, comics, toys, bath-towels, audio CDs, VHS cassettes...and yet the demand for a complete DVD set is minimal, with just a few measly releases scattered here and there. Perhaps Classic Media should be a little more considerate with the UK Programmes they now have as part of their Product Catalogue - we Brits care, too, you know!
|Dedication from the Duchess!|
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