Charlie and Lola

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Charlie and Lola are fictional children created by the English writer and illustrator Lauren Child in 2000. They were introduced in a series of picture books and later adapted as animated television characters. Although their main audience is children three to seven years old, the books and shows are popular with adults for their humorous storylines. Lola is an energetic, imaginative little girl; Charlie is a patient and kind older brother who is always willing to help Lola learn and grow.

The first book, I Will Never NOT EVER Eat a Tomato (US title, later printing with Greenaway Medal seal, 2000)

The first "Charlie and Lola" book was I will not ever NEVER eat a tomato, published by Orchard Books in 2000.[1] The U.S. edition was published in the same year by Candlewick Press, with the title: I Will Never NOT EVER Eat a Tomato. Charlie and Lola's parents, as well as their friends' parents, are often mentioned, but never seen.

For that first book in the series, Child won the 2000 Kate Greenaway Medal from the Library Association, recognising the year's best children's book illustration by a British subject. For the 50th anniversary of the Medal (1955–2005) it was named one of the top ten winning works, selected by a 2007 panel to compose the ballot for a public election of the all-time favourite.[2]

Publications[edit]

Original "Charlie and Lola" books by Lauren Child
  • I Will Not Ever Never Eat A Tomato (Orchard Books, 2000); US title, I Will Never Not Ever Eat a Tomato (Candlewick Press, 2000)
  • I Am Not Sleepy and I Will Not Go to Bed (2001)
  • I Am Too Absolutely Small for School (2003)
  • Slightly Invisible (2010)
Spin-off books based on the television series
  • I've Won, No I've Won, No I've Won
  • Snow Is My Favourite and My Best (US title: "Snow Is My Favorite and My Best")
  • But Excuse Me That Is My Book (TV episode title: But That Is My Book)
  • We Honestly Can Look After Your Dog (TV episode title: We Do Promise Honestly We Can Look After Your Dog)
  • My Wobbly Tooth Must Not Ever Never Fall Out (TV episode title: I Do Not Ever Never Want My Wobbly Tooth To Fall Out)
  • Say Cheese!
  • I'm Really Ever So Not Well
  • Whoops! But It Wasn't Me! (TV episode title: It Wasn't Me!)
  • This Is Actually My Party.
  • I Can Do Anything That's Everything All on My Own
  • You Can Be My Friend
  • I Am Going to Save a Panda
  • You Won't Like This Present As Much As I Do!
  • But I Do Know All About Chocolate (special edition for Comic Relief)
  • My School Play Sticker Book (Based upon the episode There Is Only One Sun and That Is Me!)
  • My Haircut Sticker Book (Based upon the episode I Like My Hair Completely the Way It Is)
  • My Very Busy Sticker Book (Based upon the episode I'm Far Too Extremely Busy)
  • My Picnic Sticker Book (Based upon the episode The Most Wonderfullest Picnic in the Whole Wide World)

Various colouring books and a magazine are also available in the UK.

The "Charlie and Lola" books have been translated into Welsh under the name Cai a Lois and into many other languages.

Characters[edit]

Charlie Sonner[edit]

Charlie is the loyal and older brother to Lola. He has short blonde hair, just like Lola. He is seven years old. Charlie is often asked to look after Lola, and he sometimes has to think of creative ways to keep her busy. He has proven to have a very quick temper and to be a neat freak. He's the antagonist in the majority of the episodes due to the way he treats Lola.

Lola Sonner[edit]

Lola is an imaginative four year old girl, the younger sister to Charlie; and the best friend to Lotta. She always wears blue butterfly hair clips. She has black eyes and blonde hair.

Marv Lowe[edit]

Marv is Charlie's best friend. He has a younger brother named Morten and an older brother named Marty. Marv also has a sausage dog called Sizzles and a pet mouse called Squeak. He is the same age as Charlie.

Lotta Zehybe[edit]

Lola's best friend, Lotta. She has black curly hair and she is the same age as Lola.

Soren Lorensen[edit]

Soren Lorensen is Lola's imaginary friend and is always rendered as monochrome and translucent. When Lola and Soren Lorensen are playing, Soren Lorensen is rather detailed and has the look of a real person only grey and translucent. When someone interrupts them (such as Charlie), Soren Lorensen loses detail and he becomes more transparent. As soon as the person leaves, Soren Lorensen goes back to normal.

Minor or background characters[edit]

Marty Lowe: He is Marv's older brother. He does not throw anything away. Marty does not seem to like people in his bedroom. His voice is heard in the episode Look After Your Planet. He said "Get out of my room, now!" and, "Who's been in my room?"

Minnie Reader: She is a classmate of Lola and Lotta and is very clever.

Morten Lowe: He is Marv's younger brother, he is quite shy and quiet.

Arnold Wolf: He is Lola's neighbour. Arnold is only featured in some of the episodes, and in one he stops being friends with Lola, after not sharing his ice cream with Lola when she drops hers, but then Arnold and Lola are able to build their friendship back up when lets her and Charlie use his paddling pool.

Granny and Grandpa: Charlie and Lola's grandparents. Granny paints for a hobby, while it appears that Grandpa is good with ponies.

Evie: A ruddy girl in Lola and Lotta's class who was new in the episode, "My Best, Best Bestest Friend" with red hair which she wears in ponytails.

Jack: Marv's cousin who Lola and Lotta thought was Marv's new best friend in the episode, "But Marv is Absolutely Charlie's Best Friend"

Other background characters[edit]

Pets[edit]

Sizzles - Marv's dog. Sizzles is a dachshund (sausage dog).

Nibbles - Charlie and Lola's short-lived mouse.

Casper - Charlie & Lola's Grandparent's cat who loves Charlie more than Lola. Jerry - That's Nibbles' mouse sister.

Other[edit]

Bat Cat - A character from one of Charlie and Lola's favorite comics. He is grey/black upright cat that goes about doing heroic deeds, usually for other cats.

Pirate Squidbones - Another of Charlie and Marv's favorite comics and cartoons, Pirate Squidbones tells of the adventures of a notorious one-eyed pirate and his motley crew.

In other media[edit]

Television series[edit]

The books have been adapted by Tiger Aspect into a cartoon series, using a collage style of animation which accurately captures the style of the original books. Directed by Kitty Taylor and Claudia Lloyd. 2D cel animation, paper cutout, fabric design, real textures, photomontage, and archive footage are all employed and subsequently animated in a software application called CelAction.[3] The cartoons are also notable for their use of children's voices, rather than adult voice actors, a technique pioneered by the Peanuts television specials.

The first series of 26 episodes (11 minutes each) was first broadcast on 7 November 2005. .[4] The second series of 26 episodes (again, 11 minutes each) started broadcasting on Cbeebies on 2 October 2006 (with the morning broadcast also being shown on BBC Two) a third series followed. In the television series, Charlie is seven and Lola is four, and goes to school (her teacher is called Mrs. Hansen). In episodes of both the first and second series, Charlie celebrates his birthday (in "It's a Secret..." and "This Is Actually My Party"), although this doesn't seem to affect his age in other episodes. The third series, a final 26-episode run, was broadcast in the UK and the US in the 2007-2008 television season. With two special episodes broadcast in 2006 and 2007, a total of 80 episodes were produced.

Theatre[edit]

Charlie and Lola's Best Bestest Play was first performed at Polka Theatre on 26 April 2008 and has subsequently been performed at the venue again in 2010 and 2012. It will be staged for the first time at Glow, the events and exhibition space at Bluewater in Kent, by Watershed Productions over the Christmas period of 2013. [5]

Charlie and Lola's Best Bestest Play is based on the characters created by Lauren Child and adapted by Jonathan Lloyd, Artistic Director of Polka Theatre.

The Charlie and Lola Album[edit]

Charlie and Lola's Favourite and Best Music Record was released on 19 March 2007, aimed at parents as well as children. The music is largely a development of existing interstitial and theme music taken from series 1 and 2. There are elements of easy listening, lounge, big band jazz, reggae, bluegrass, eastern European, sci-fi, Latin, classical and film music. There are 17 tracks plus one hidden track, with the programme's theme tune opening and closing the album.

Each track includes spoken word extracts from the series. In many cases, these are manipulated to fit with the musical accompaniment.

"The Bestest in the Barn" was released as a single on 12 March 2007. It features Lola and Lotta teaching various animals on their farm how to sing, dance and play music. This is the only track on the album which does not appear in any episode. Lola and Lotta do however appear as farmers in "I Do Not Ever Never Want My Wobbly Tooth To Fall Out". They also have a tendency to imagine that animals are capable of developing impressive human skills, as seen in "We Do Promise Honestly We Can Look After Your Dog" and "I Will Not Ever Never Forget You Nibbles".

The album is a collaboration between various composers and musicians who write and perform for the TV series. Much of the music is programmed but many tracks feature performances by musicians from London based bands – Menlo Park, Polar Bear and Acoustic Ladyland.

Four of the tracks have been animated by Tiger Aspect Productions: "The Bestest in the Barn", "Sizzles", "Batcat" and "It's Snowing". "The Bestest in the Barn" video is encoded as an mpeg on the album CD, and all four videos are included as DVD extras on the series 2 DVD collection.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Charlie and Lola Theme Tune"
  2. "I Really Want To Play Music"
  3. "The Bestest in the Barn"
  4. "Boo!"
  5. "Sizzles"
  6. "I Will Not Ever Never Eat A Tomato"
  7. "Milk Monkeys"
  8. "Germs"
  9. "Magic"
  10. "Bat Cat"
  11. "Lolaland"
  12. "Greendrops"
  13. "I Am Not Sleepy"
  14. "Martian Attack"
  15. "All Sleepy"
  16. "Can You Maybe Turn The Light on?"
  17. "Charlie and Lola Theme Tune" (Extended Version)
  18. ".... It's Snowing" (secret track)
  19. "Jerry, Where Are You?"

Music credits[edit]

Theme Tune written by Tom Dyson and Soren Munk
Production & Arrangement with John Greswell

All other tracks written by John Greswell and produced by Greswell / Taylor for MPM London Ltd.

Except:

  • 3 written by John Greswell, Christopher Taylor, Benjamin Nicholls
  • 6, 12 written by John Greswell, Christopher Taylor
  • 7 written by Tom Dyson, Soren Munk
  • 16 written and produced by David Schweitzer

Additional musicians[edit]

  • Andy Mellon – Trumpet / Flugel horn / Piano / Vocals / Clarinet
  • Benjamin Nicholls – Guitars / Banjo / Jews harp / Double bass / Bass guitar
  • Pete Wareham – Tenor saxophone / Trumpet
  • Sebastian Rochford - Drums / Percussion
  • Joe Bentley – Trombone

Demon Music Group Ltd.

BBC Worldwide Ltd.

All tracks published by Tiger Aspect / BMG Music Publishing

Sleeve Package design by David Mackintosh

Voices[edit]

  • Charlie – Jethro Lundie-Brown, Daniel Mayers (series 2), Oriel Agranoff (series 3)
  • Lola – Maisie Cowell, Clementine Cowell (series 2), Holly Callaway (series 3)
  • Marv – Ryan Harris
  • Lotta – Morgan Gayle
  • Soren Lorenson – Stanley Street

Animation of promos[edit]

"The Bestest in the Barn", "Dancing Dogs", "Batcat" and "It's Snowing" promos animated by Tiger Aspect Productions. Tom Beattie, Betti Doherty, Alistair Douglas, Catherine T. Elliot, Tim Fehrenbach, Claudia Lloyd, James O'Shea, Caroline Parkinson, Mark Patterson, Steve Perkins, Kitty Taylor, Clare Winkworth, Andrew Zein.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ (Greenaway Winner 2000). Living Archive: Celebrating the Carnegie and Greenaway Winners. CILIP. Retrieved 2 July 2012.
  2. ^ "70 Years Celebration: Anniversary Top Tens". The CILIP Carnegie & Kate Greenaway Children's Book Awards. CILIP. Retrieved 2 July 2012.
  3. ^ Tiger Aspect Productions
  4. ^ BBC - Press Office - Charlie and Lola press pack introduction
  5. ^ http://www.ticketmaster.co.uk/Charlie-and-Lola-tickets/artist/1409577

External links[edit]