Sooty & Co.

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Sooty & Co.

Sooty&co.jpg

Sooty and Co. opening theme (1995-1998).
Created by Matthew Corbett
Starring Matthew Corbett
Brenda Longman
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 6
No. of episodes 85
Production
Running time 20 minutes
Production company(s) Granada Television and Cosgrove Hall Films (Opening sequence only)
Broadcast
Original channel ITV Network (CITV)
Original run 6 September 1993 (1993-09-06) – 14 December 1998 (1998-12-14)
Chronology
Preceded by The Sooty Show (1955–1992)
Followed by Sooty Heights (1999–2000)

Sooty & Co. is a British children's television series that was produced for six series by Granada Television, that aired on ITV from 6 September 1993 to 14 December 1998. The series centres on Matthew Corbett, and puppets Sooty, Sweep, Soo and Little Cousin Scampi, as they try to run a junk shop in Manchester.

Plot[edit]

Matthew Corbett runs a shop in Manchester, with puppets Sooty (a yellow bear that can perform magic), Sweep (a squeaking dog), Soo (a female panda), and Little Cousin Scampi (another, if smaller, bear). Sooty and the gang are often getting up to mischief, and it is usually Soo and Matthew that are the more sensible ones.

A regular visitor at Sooty & Co. is Mo (from the market) (played by Brenda Longman, the voice of Soo), and most episodes involve Matthew getting into a mess due to the puppets, whether it is having water poured over him or having cream cakes thrown at his face. Some episodes finish with a song, usually performed by Matthew and the group. Most episodes conclude with the sooty gang and Matthew waving "Bye Bye, Everybody, bye bye".

Full episodes of Sooty & Co. are also available to watch on the Classic Sooty Show YouTube Channel.

Characters[edit]

  • Matthew Corbett - presenter.
  • Connie Creighton - guest presenter
  • Sooty - a mute yellow bear who is the protagonist of the show. He owns a magic wand whose power is invoked using the words "Izzy wizzy, let's get busy".
  • Sweep - a dim-witted grey dog with a penchant for bones and sausages.
  • Soo - a calm and collected female panda who acts as the foil for both Sooty and Sweep. Usually wears a red skirt. Voiced by Brenda Longman.
  • Little Cousin Scampi - he is very cheeky and a serial troublemaker. He wears a navy blue school uniform and, like his Big Cousin Sooty, is mute.
  • Maureen "Mo" Clinton - a regular customer with a blonde perm. Always introduces herself with "Hello, it's only me, Mo from t'market." Played by Brenda Longman (the voice of Soo).
  • Dwayne Pipe - Mo's nephew. A stereotypical geek who is balding and wears thick glasses.

Episodes[edit]

Setting[edit]

The show was initially shot on the same studio set as Coronation Street, with a few of the sets were visible whenever Matthew and the gang would go outside. A notable episode featured Les and Toyah Battersby appearing on the Season 6 Episode 'Estate Agents' and they were very rude to Matthew. For later series' scenes for the shop frontage were filmed on Whittaker Lane, Prestwich.

Controversy[edit]

A particular controversial episode of the show was "Soo's Babies", where Soo pretended to be pregnant. It received complaints from viewers, made it into the newspapers, and made E4's Top 20 Most 'Controversial TV Programmes' at number 20. On E4's show, Brenda Longman (who plays 'Mo' and voices 'Soo' in the show), said the idea came about because Matthew tended to write for his daughter. Matthew stated that he recalled his daughter wandering into his room with a pillow up her jumper, saying she was going to have a baby. He also said how it was a sort of educational piece.

In the same episode Soo says she feels she has got the whole of the Manchester football team inside her, a joke also seen as unsuitable for children by some. In the show's defence, Longman stated how the show was also watched by parents, and that there were jokes in it for parents. Uri Geller said the story was played in a 'nice' and 'humorous' way.

UK VHS & DVD Releases[edit]

DVD Title Release Date Episodes
Sooty & Co - Sooty's Magic Box Of Tricks: Part 1 2007 Pulling The Wool, Tidy Box, Delgrub, The Stain Remover
VHS Title Release Date Episodes
Sooty & Co - Moving In/Bubble Trouble (VC1332) 7 March 1994 Moving In, Bubble Trouble
Sooty & Co - Scrap Idea/Buddy Jolly (VC1333) 7 March 1994 Scrap Idea, Buddy Jolly
Sooty & Co - Canal Capers/Staff Training (VC1336) 11 July 1994 Canal Capers, Staff Training
Sooty & Co - Sooty's Magic Solutions/New Friends (VC1337) 11 July 1994 Sooty's Magic Solutions, New Friends
Sooty & Co - Splashing Out/Soo to the Rescue (VC1338) 3 October 1994 Splashing Out, Soo to the Rescue
Sooty & Co - World Of Fun/Clocks Galore (VC1339) 3 October 1994 World Of Fun, Clocks Galore
Sooty & Co - Camping Out and Other Stories (VC1383) 1 May 1995 A Magical Voice, Bun Fight, Camping Out
Sooty - Speedy Sweep and Other Stories (VC1419) 2 September 1996 Speedy Sweep, Sweep's Little Accident, Breakdown
Sooty - Sooty's Elastic Tricks and Other Stories (VC1414) 2 September 1996 Soo's Spring Cleaning, Sooty's Elastic Tricks, Home Alone Sweep
My Bumper Sooty - Little Shop Of Mischief (VC1441) 12 May 1997 Soo's Babies, Fun Park, Shop-Keeping, Sweep's Family, Dog Trouble
Sooty & Co - An Izzy Wizzy Christmas 9 November 1998 Sooty's Christmas Panto, The Gift, World Of Fun, Bun Fight
Sooty & Co - Animal Magic 28 February 2000 Pony and Trap, Kennels, Chaffinch
Sooty & Co - Sooty's Magic Box Of Tricks 21 August 2000 Splashing Out, Sooty's Magic Solutions, The Stain Remover, Talent Night, Twins, Moose Loose in the House, Now You See Him, Pulling The Wool, Tidy Box, Delgrub

Other Sooty-based shows[edit]

Below is a list of other Sooty-based shows, before and after Sooty & Co.

Title original run
The Sooty Show 1952–1992
Sooty & Co. 1993–1998
Sooty Heights 1999–2000
Sooty (TV series) 2001–2004
Sooty 2011–present

External links[edit]