Bibi Blocksberg

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Bibi Blocksberg is a German radio drama series for children, created in 1980 by Elfie Donnelly. The main character is a girl called Bibi Blocksberg, who is a witch. As of winter 2008, there have been 92 episodes. The original title of the series was Eene meene Hexerei. This title was used for the first seven episodes, after which the series was renamed to Bibi Blocksberg. The first episodes were later released under the new title and with a new cover. The old episodes are very sought after among collectors. The length of the episodes originally varied between 35 and 40 minutes and nowadays between 40 and 45 minutes. An exception is episode #78 with a length of 52 minutes.

In the series, Bibi, who is fond of playing practical jokes, experiences numerous adventures with her friends. Magic often plays a major part, and often leads to trouble, and Bibi's mother, who is also a witch, must come to set things straight. Bibi's antagonist is often the mayor of Neustadt, who is presented as lazy and incompetent. This leads to conflict with the helpful Bibi.

The surname of Bibi is a reference to the old name of the Brocken, a mountain in Saxony-Anhalt in its native Germany that is traditionally connected with witches (Walpurgis Night), most famously in Goethe's Faust.

Characters[edit]

Bibi Blocksberg[edit]

Brigitte "Bibi" Blocksberg is a 13-year-old girl, depicted on the cover with blonde hair tied to a pony tail with a red bow and wearing a green dress (green is her favourite colour), white socks and no shoes. Bibi likes to use her magical powers to make practical jokes. Not only the mayor, but also the school principal, the teachers and many other people of Neustadt fall victim to her jokes. Her favourite mode of transport is her broomstick Kartoffelbrei (mashed potato) which she can make fly by chanting spell rhymes, such as Eene meene Mei, Kartoffelbrei mein Flugzeug sei, or Eeene meene Schmieg, Kartoffelbrei los, flieg. Often, the journalist Karla Kolumna reports her jokes and adventures. Apart from her tendency to make jokes, Bibi has a big heart. She rescues the townspeople in many episodes, tries to help her friends and is opposed to injustice in the world.

Bibi's family[edit]

Bernhard and Barbara Blocksberg are Bibi's parents. Barbara is also a witch, and flies to the Walburgisnacht every year on her broomstick Baldrian (Baldrian is a common sleeping draught). In the first episodes, her eccentric cooking is a source of annoyance for her family. Barbara insist on cooking witches' food with ingredients such as spiders and frogs, even though no member of her family likes it. Once, she admits that she doesn't even like the food herself, but merely tries to uphold old witch traditions. When Barbara is tired of her family, she flies to visit her friend Amanda. She has a witch's laboratory, in which she often makes foul-smelling magical potions and experiments with various herbs. She feels responsible for upholding a "normal" life in her household and has thus set many rules in the Blocksberg house (for example no flying in through the window, no flying to school on the broomstick, use magic only in an emergency), but these rules are often broken. She frequently reminds her daughter of the witches' honour code, which for example forbids conjuring up money. Like many other adult witches, Barbara is a member of the Hexenrat (witches' council).

Bernhard Blocksberg has no magic powers, as these are exclusive to women. He would like to have a normal family, which he mentions in nearly every episode. He often forbids Barbara and Bibi to use magic, but they never listen to him. However, he is proud of "his" witches. He has a habit of reading the town newspaper every morning. Although Bernhard and Barbara often have arguments, which sometimes escalate to divorce threats, they love each other and in some later episodes go on romantic cruises, for example to Venice.

The first seven episodes also feature Bibi's little brother Boris. He is often very jealous of Bibi's magical powers, which leads to many arguments between them. According to episode #1, he is eight years old. In episode #9, he moves to his grandparents' house at the North Sea. The reason that is given is that he has a cough and needs fresh sea air. He is never mentioned again and doesn't return to his parents and sister, not even on important occasions, such as when the Blocksbergs are moving into a new house.

Monika[edit]

Moni (Monika) is Bibi's best friend. She first appears in episode #10 Bibis neue Freundin (Bibi's new friend), when she comes to Bibi's class. Originally, she was unpopular. She often was unfriendly to her classmates. Because of her old-fashioned clothes and the fact that she used to live in a small village, she was called a Landpomeranze (derogatery term used for a girl from the countryside). Only when Bibi found out that Moni has trouble with her very strict parents, she decided to help her, and they have been good friends since.

Marita[edit]

Marita is Bibi's best friend in later episodes. Bibi meets her in episode #19. Marita is a lot more self-confident than Bibi's other friend, Moni. Even though they sometimes have arguments, Bibi and Marita remain close friends. Marita appears often in later episodes and has many exciting adventures with Bibi.

Florian[edit]

Florian is one of Bibi's best friends and a computer guru. In later episodes, he also became a fan of Sherlock Holmes. He has helped Bibi raise a dinosaur and was present at many other adventures, which would often involve him looking up things on his computer. Bibi and the others often call him "Flori". It is sometimes implied that Bibi's friend Moni might have a crush on Florian.

The Mayor[edit]

The Mayor's name is Bruno Presssack (A Pressack is a type of German sausage, as well as a derogatory term for a corpulent person), but he is nearly always referred to as "The Mayor". He often makes many good promises, but his motive is always only money. He refers to Bibi as "Bibi Blocksbergi". This is due to the fact that in episode #3 Die Zauberlimonade (The magic lemonade), Bibi made him drink magic lemonade that forced him to add an "i" to every word he said. He has kept the habit ever since. He is dominant and rude to his secretary Pichler. He loves food and is portrayed as overweight. He is sometimes presented as megalomanic. In episode #64 Die neue Schule (The new school), for instance, he orders a new city hall to be built in the shape of a castle, and in episode #63 Die Wahrsagerin (The fortune-teller), he visits a fortune-teller, who tells him he is going to be King of Neustadt, which causes him to order a regal robe and sceptre. He often appears a bit stupid and gullible, and his character is defined by a lust for profit and a habit of emphasising his own importance. However, he is never cruel. He has a good heart hidden deep inside of him.

Karla Kolumna[edit]

Karla is a reporter, who is always looking for a big story. She is good friends with the Blocksberg family and often helps them. She often rides a motorcycle on her job. Her notable attributes are her high-pitched voice and loud laugh, her habit of talking very quickly and her catchphrase Sensationell!. She sometimes refers to the Mayor as her "dearest enemy". She enjoys presenting him as greedy. Karla also appears in the radio drama series Benjamin Blümchen and the Bibi Blocksberg spin-off, Bibi und Tina.

Flauipaui[edit]

Flauipaui is a young witch who is friends with Bibi and Schubia. She is obsessed with her appearance, often combing her long hair and looking at herself in the mirror. She is very easily scared. She is afraid of her magic teacher Tante Mania, because she never understands her homework. However, she can be very brave in dangerous situations. She goes to magic school with Schubia Wanzhaar and Bibi Blocksberg. Her broomstick is called Gänseblümchen (Daisy).

Schubia[edit]

Schubia Wanzhaar is a young punk witch. She attends magic school with Bibi and Flauipaui. She has green hair and a motor broomstick called Kawakasi (probably a pun on the motorcycle manufacturer Kawasaki). She often has problems with her magic teacher Tante Mania because she's inattentive. She is overconfident, but is good friends with Bibi and Flaupaui, whom she often teases. She appears tough, but has a soft heart. She wears punk clothes and always wears deep red lipstick.

Amanda[edit]

Even though Bibi refers to her as "Tante" (aunt), Amanda is not actually related to the Blocksbergs. She is a friend of Barbara's, who doesn't only have magical powers as well, but also shares her passion for witchcraft. In episode #77, it is revealed that she is the chairwoman of the witches' council's progressive wing.

Mania[edit]

Mania is the oldest witch in and a foundation member of the witches' council. In early episodes, she is portrayed as the typical evil witch of fairy tales, with a strong dislike for other people. In episode #35, she even conjures up eternal winter, only to spite her fellow witches. In later episodes, she is shown as friendlier, but still very strict and set in her own ways. She becomes the teacher of the young witches Bibi, Flauipaui and Schubia. She doesn't care much for Flauipaui and Schubia, but she likes Bibi's kindness and her good heart, as well as her talent in witchcraft. Mania owns several cats, owls and a black raven named Abraxas (which is also the name of The Little Witch's raven [Otfried Preußler]), whom she uses to send messages, as well as to keep her company.

Walpurgia[edit]

Walpurgia is the head of the witches' council. She is very strict and insists on rules to be followed. In addition to her position in the witches' council, she runs a boarding school for young witches, to which Bibi, Flauipaui and Schubia are sent temporarily in episode #77.

The Thunderstorms[edit]

Cecily Thunderstorm is Bibi's aunt from Ireland and also a witch. She first appears in episode #8, and afterwards in episodes #36 and #82. She is married to Patrick Thunderstorm, who, like Bernard Blocksberg, has no magic powers. Patrick owns a flying car, which has been enchanted by his wife. Their daughter Margie first had problems with Bibi, but when Bibi learned of the castle's financial problems, she helped Margie and they became friends. The two girls have stayed in touch since. Despite the fact that the Thuderstorms are Irish, they always speak German, even among themselves. Only occasionally do they use English terms or phrases, such as "darling" or "Oh yeah!".

Cast[edit]

Character Voice actor (German) Voice actor (English)
Narrator Ulli Herzog (episodes 1–7), Joachim Nottke (episodes 8–68), Gunter Schoß (since episode 69)
Bibi Bocksberg Susanna Bonaséwicz, Katja Nottke (episodes 3–5) Angie Beers
Bernhard Blocksberg Bodo Wolf (since episode 93), previously Guido Weber Paul Hudson
Barbara Blocksberg Gabriele Streichhahn (since episode 93), previously Hallgard Bruckhaus Elinor Holt
Boris Blocksberg Frank Schaff-Langhans
Karla Kolumna Gisela Fritsch Mariette Sluyter
Mayor Heinz Giese, Richard Hemmo (since episode 89) Jonathan Love
Secretary Pichler Wilfried Herbst Ethan Cole
Schubia Ghada Al-Akel (since episode 65), previously Sabine Thiesler
Flauipaui Melanie Hinze
Aunt Amanda Edith Teichmann (episodes 18, 35, 41), Barbara Ratthey (episodes 41–86), Daniela Strietzel (since episode 109)
Aunt Mania Luise Lunow (since episode 73), previously Tilly Lauenstein
Aunt Walpurgia Maria Axt (episodes 18, 35), Astrid Bless (episodes 77–87), Helga Sasse (since episode 100)
Moni Julia Ziffer (since episode 66), previously Natascha Rybakowski
Marita Uschi Hugo (since episode 74), previously Tatjana Gessner Lori Barnes-Smith
Florian Gerrit Schmidt-Foß (since episode 68), previously Oliver Elias
Frau Müller-Riebensehl Eva-Maria Werth Michelle Warkentin

Further works[edit]

There have been two films about Bibi Blocksberg:

There is also an animated series with three seasons with 26 episodes each, and an animated film Geht's auch ohne Hexerei?. There are also two spin-offs: Elea Eluanda, appearing as a guest in episode #78, and Bibi und Tina, in which Bibi has adventures on a riding farm with her new friend, Tina.

Bibi has several cameo appearances in the series Benjamin the Elephant, also by Elfie Donnelly. In fact, Bibi was first introduced in that series alongside Benjamin, and the general setting and some of the characters (especially Karla Kolumna) are the same in both audio play series.

The official mobile game "Bibi's Stardust Chase" was released in 2013.

Episodes[edit]

Animated series[edit]

  • Season 1
    • 1. Der Wetterfrosch ("The Weather Frog")
    • 2. B.B. als Prinzessin ("B.B. as a Princess")
    • 3. B.B. als Babysitter ("B.B. as a Baby Sitter")
    • 4. 3x schwarzer Kater ("Three Times Black Cat")
    • 5. Der Superhexspruch ("The Super Spell")
    • 6. B.B. im Dschungel ("B.B. in the Jungle")
    • 7. B.B. und das Dino-Ei ("B.B. and the Dinosaur Egg")
    • 8. B.B. und die Vampire ("B.B. and the Vampires")
    • 9. Wo ist Kartoffelbrei? ("Where is Kartoffelbrei?")
    • 10. Das Wettfliegen ("The Flying Competition")
    • 11. Die Mathekrankheit ("The Math Sickness")
    • 12. Die neue Schule ("The New School")
    • 13. B.B. im Orient ("B.B. in the Orient")
  • Season 2
    • 14. B.B. und die Weihnachtsmänner ("B.B. and the Santa Clauses")
    • 15. B.B. verliebt sich ("B.B. Falls in Love")
    • 16. Geht's auch ohne Hexerei? ("Do Things Work Even Without Magic?")
  • Season 3
    • 17. Der weiße Kakadu ("The White Cocktaoo")
    • 18. Superpudel Puck ("Puck, The Super Poodle")
    • 19. Das verhexte Dromedar ("The Magical Dromedary")
    • 20. Abenteuer bei den Dinos ("Adventure Among the Dinosaurs")
    • 21. Der Hexenbann ("The Magical Ban")
    • 22. Die Computerhexe ("The Computer Witch")
    • 23. Der Hexengeburtstag ("The Witch Birthday")
    • 24. Die Schlossgespenster ("The Ghosts in the Castle")
    • 25. Hexerei im Zirkus ("Magic at the Circus")
    • 26. Mamis Geburtstag ("Mummy's Birthday")

Radio drama[edit]

  • 1. Hexen gibt es doch ("Witches Do Exist")
  • 2. Hexerei in der Schule ("Magic at the School")
  • 3. Die Zauberlimonade ("The Magical Lemonade")
  • 4. Der Bankräuber ("The Bank Robber")
  • 5. Ein verhexter Urlaub ("A Magical Holiday")
  • 6. Die Kuh im Schlafzimmer ("The Cow in the Bedroom")
  • 7. B.B. heilt den Bürgermeister ("B.B. Heals the Mayor")
  • 8. Die Schloßgespenster ("The Ghosts in the Castle")
  • 9. B.B. verliebt sich ("B.B.Falls in Love")
  • 10. Bibis neue Freundin ("Bibi's New Friend")
  • 11. Der Schulausflug ("The School Trip")
  • 12. B.B. hat Geburtstag ("B.B.'s Birthday")
  • 13. Ein verhexter Sonntag ("A Magical Sunday")
  • 14. B.B. in Amerika ("B.B. in America")
  • 15. Die schwarzen Vier ("The Black Four")
  • 16. Das Schulfest ("The School Party")
  • 17. Der kleine Hexer ("The Young Wizard")
  • 18. Auf dem Hexenberg ("On the Witch Mountain")
  • 19. Das Sportfest ("The Sports Festival")
  • 20. Papa ist weg ("Daddy is Gone")
  • 21. B.B. zieht um ("B.B. Moves House")
  • 22. Dreimal schwarzer Kater ("Three Times Black Cat")
  • 23. B.B. und der Autostau ("B.B. and the Road Congestion")
  • 24. B.B. und der Supermarkt ("B.B. and the Supermarket")
  • 25. B.B. reißt aus ("B.B. Runs Away From Home")
  • 26. Die Schnitzeljagd ("The Scavenger Hunt")
  • 27. Die verhexte Hitparade ("The Magical Hit Parade")
  • 28. B.B. im Dschungel ("B.B. in the Jungle")
  • 29. Der neue Hexenbesen ("The New Broom")
  • 30. B.B. in der Ritterzeit ("B.B. in the Age of the Knights")
  • 31. Auf der Märcheninsel ("On the Fairy Tale Island")
  • 32. B.B. als Prinzessin ("B.B. as a Princess")
  • 33. B.B. als Babysitter ("B.B. as Babysitter")
  • 34. B.B. darf nicht hexen ("B.B. Must Not Use Magic")
  • 35. Der Hexenfluch ("The Witch Curse")
  • 36. Die weißen Enten ("The White Ducks")
  • 37. Der Flohmarkt ("The Flea Market")
  • 38. Die Weihnachtsmänner ("The Santa Clauses")
  • 39. Unverhofftes Wiedersehen ("A Surprising Reunion")
  • 40. B.B. und die Vampire ("B.B. and the Vampires")
  • 41. Ohne Mami geht es nicht ("It Won't Work Without Mummy")
  • 42. B.B. im Zirkus ("B.B. at the Circus")
  • 43. Der Reiterhof Teil 1 ("The Riding Stable, Part 1")
  • 44. Der Reiterhof Teil 2 ("The Riding Stable, Part 2")
  • 45. Das Lufttaxi ("The Air Taxi")
  • 46. Karla gibt nicht auf ("Karla Won't Give Up")
  • 47. Das Reitturnier ("The Riding Competition")
  • 48. B.B. ist krank ("B.B. is Sick")
  • 49. Der Hexengeburtstag ("The Witch Birthday")
  • 50. B.B. im Orient ("B.B. in the Orient")
  • 51. B.B. wird entführt ("B.B. Gets Kidnapped")
  • 52. Wo ist Kartoffelbrei? ("Where is Kartoffelbrei?")
  • 53. Der Superhexspruch ("The Super Spell")
  • 54. Die Computerhexe ("The Computer Witch")
  • 55. Mamis Geburtstag ("Mummy's Birthday")
  • 56. Der Wetterfrosch ("The Weather Frog")
  • 57. Der blaue Brief ("The Blue Letter")
  • 58. B.B. und das Dino-Ei ("B.B. and the Dinosaur Egg")
  • 59. B.B. und Dino ("B.B. and Dino")
  • 60. Der Geisterkater ("The Ghost Cat")
  • 61. Der Flaschengeist ("The Genie of the Bottle")
  • 62. Das feuerrote Nashorn ("The Fire-Red Rhinoceros")
  • 63. Die Wahrsagerin ("The Fortune Teller")
  • 64. Die neue Schule ("The New School")
  • 65. Das Wettfliegen ("The Flying Competition")
  • 66. Das verhexte Osterei ("The Magical Easter Egg")
  • 67. Der weiße Kakadu ("The White Cockatoo")
  • 68. B.B. und die Piraten ("B.B. and the Pirates")
  • 69. Verhexte Weihnachten ("A Magical Christmas")
  • 70. Das gestohlene Hexenkraut ("The Stolen Witch Herbs")
  • 71. Die Hexenschule ("The Witch School")
  • 72. Der verhexte Kalender ("The Magical Calendar")
  • 73. Freitag der 13 ("Friday the 13th")
  • 74. Der Brieffreund ("The Pen Pal")
  • 75. Die neue Lehrerin ("The New Teacher")
  • 76. Schubia dreht durch ("Schubia Goes Crazy")
  • 77. B.B. im Hexeninternat ("B.B. at the Witch Boarding School")
  • 78. B.B. und Elea Eluanda ("B.B. and Elea Eluanda")
  • 79. Papis Geburtstag ("Daddy's Birthday")
  • 80. Das Schmusekätzchen ("The Cuddly Kitten")
  • 81. Mami in Not ("Mummy in Trouble")
  • 82. Hexspruch mit Folgen ("Magic Spell with Consequences")
  • 83. Die Klassenreise ("The Class Trip")
  • 84. Das Hexenhoroskop ("The Witch Horoscope")
  • 85. Die Hundebabys ("The Baby Dogs")
  • 86. Kann Papi hexen? ("Can Daddy Do Magic?")
  • 87. Die vertauschte Hexenkugel ("The Switched Crystal Ball")
  • 88. Superpudel Puck ("Puck, the Super Poodle")
  • 89. Die Junghexenbande ("The Young Witches Gang")
  • 90. Oma Grete sorgt für Wirbel ("Grandma Grete Causes Trouble")
  • 91. Maritas Geheimnis ("Marita's Secret")
  • 92. Das geheimnisvolle Schloss ("The Mysterious Castle")
  • 93. B.B. braucht Hilfe ("B.B. Needs Help")
  • 94. Die verhexte Zeitreise ("The Enchanted Time Travel")
  • 95. Die verbotene Hexeninsel ("The Forbidden Island of Witches")
  • 96. Das traurige Einhorn ("The Sad Unicorn")
  • 97. Überraschung für Mami ("Surprise for Mum")
  • 98. Die Prinzessinen von Thunderstorm ("The Princesses of Thunderstorm")
  • 99. Die kleine Spürnase ("The little Good Nose")
  • 100. Die große Hexenparty ("The Big Party of Witches")
  • 101. ... und Piraten-Lilly ("... and Pirate Lilly")
  • Special edition: Der verrückte Staubsauger ("The Crazy Hoover")
  • 102. Die Ballett-Tanzgruppe ("The Ballet-Dancing Chorus")
  • 103. Der Hexenschatz ("The Treasure of Witches")
  • 104. Der verhexte Bürgermeister ("The Bewitched Mayor")
  • 105. Die Hexenküche ("The Kitchen of Witches")
  • 106. Der verrückte Staubsauger ("The Crazy Hoover")
  • 107. Die Geheimsprache ("The Secret Language")
  • 108. Der Familienausflug ("The Family Trip")
  • 109. Der Hexenball ("The Ball of Witches")
  • 110. Die kleine Elfe ("The Little Elf")
  • 111. Der Hexenbesen-Dieb ("The thief of the witches broom")
  • 110. Das TV-Hex-Duell ("The duel of witches in the TV")

Theme song[edit]

Originally, the series had an instrumental theme. In the new episodes there is a vocal theme song. The melody was arranged by Heiko Rüsse. Since episode #83, there has been a new theme song, arranged by Wolfgang W. Loos and Heiko Rüsse.

Criticism[edit]

Bibi Blocksberg is generally considered a good, entertaining and educational children's series.

It has however received criticism from the scientist Gerd Strohmeier. The cause of the criticism is the character of the incompetent and corrupt mayor of Neustadt, which Strohmeier claims will give a negative view of politics to children.[1]

External links[edit]

References[edit]