Talking Cricket

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Talking Cricket
The Adventures of Pinocchio character
File-Grillo parlante.jpg
Il Grillo Parlante, as illustrated by Enrico Mazzanti
First appearance The Adventures of Pinocchio
Created by Carlo Collodi
Information
Species Cricket
Gender Male

The Talking Cricket (Italian: Il Grillo Parlante) is a fictional character who appears in Carlo Collodi's 1883 book The Adventures of Pinocchio (Le avventure di Pinocchio).

Role[edit]

The Cricket, who has lived in Geppetto's house for over a century, makes its first appearance in Chapter IV. Pinocchio's mischief has landed his creator Geppetto in prison. The Cricket explains to him that children who are lazy and disobedient never come to any good in the world, and are often sorry afterwards for what they have done. He insists that Pinocchio must either attend school or get a job in order to function properly in the world. When Pinocchio refuses to listen, the Cricket tries to be sympathetic explaining that "You are a puppet and what's worse is that you have a head of wood." In response, Pinocchio angrily throws a mallet at the cricket, killing it.

The Cricket reappears subsequently in Chapter XIII as a ghost. He appears to Pinocchio in a dark wood, telling him to return home rather than keep an appointment with The Fox and the Cat (Il Gatto e la Volpe) who have deceived Pinocchio into following them on a fool's errand. Pinocchio refuses and in chapter XIV he is subsequently injured in an encounter with the Fox and the Cat (who are disguised as two bandits). The Cricket reappears again in Chapter XVI, where he is revealed to be a doctor. He and his colleagues the Crow and the Owl tends to Pinocchio's injuries though the Cricket reveals his prior experience with the puppet to the others describing him as "...a disobedient rascal, who will cause his poor father to die heartbroken!"

The Cricket makes his final appearance in Chapter XXXVI, where he is living in a house given to him by The Fairy with Turquoise Hair. He forgives Pinocchio and allows him and the ailing Geppetto to stay while Geppetto recuperates.

Quotations[edit]

Trouble awaits boys who rebel against their parents and capriciously abandon their paternal home! They will never experience goodness in this world, and sooner or later, they will have to pay for it sourly.- Chapter IV

My boy, do not trust those who promise to make you rich overnight. They are usually either mad or charlatans! Heed my words, and turn back.- Chapter XIII

Now you call me “your dear little cricket”, true? But do you not recall when, to banish me from your house, you threw a mallet at me?- Chapter XXXVI

Media portrayals[edit]

  • In the 1940 Disney film Pinocchio, the Talking Cricket is renamed Jiminy Cricket (voiced by Cliff Edwards) and is portrayed very differently from the relatively minor character of the book. He takes on a much more prominent role in the film as Pinocchio's inseparable companion and conscience under instructions from the Fairy with the Turquoise Hair (renamed the Blue Fairy). His relationship with Pinocchio is much less adversarial than in the book. He never provokes Pinocchio to the point of getting himself killed as in the book (although he is still stern when he needs to be), and there is no indication he is as old as the Cricket of the novel. Jiminy Cricket also appeared in Fun and Fancy Free as the host of the two story segments and he later appeared as the Ghost of Christmas Past in Mickey's Christmas Carol and Jiminy also appeared as a Disney mascot. Jiminy Cricket later appears in Disney's House of Mouse and Kingdom Hearts voiced by Eddie Carroll. In later projects following Eddie Carroll's death, Phil Snyder voices Jiminy Cricket.
Il Grillo Parlante, as portrayed in Giuliano Cencis Un burattino di nome Pinocchio
  • In Giuliano Cencis' 1972 adaptation Un burattino di nome Pinocchio, the Cricket (voiced by Lauro Gazzolo) though anthropomorphized, differs little from the character of the novel; he is stern to Pinocchio, resulting in his death and subsequent reappearance as a shade and later, the owner of a little cottage where Pinocchio and Geppetto lodge after escaping from the Terrible Dogfish, thereupon reminding Pinocchio to change his ways for good. The only difference in characterization is that he does not reappear in the Fairy's house as a doctor.


  • In the 1987 film Pinocchio and the Emperor of the Night, he appears initially as a wooden cricket (voiced by Don Knotts) made by Geppetto for Pinocchio to play with and comes to life early on to act as Pinocchio's companion. He is given the name Gee Willickers as it's the first thing Pinocchio says to him.
  • In the 1992 direct to video adaptation from GoodTimes Entertainment, the Cricket (voiced by Cam Clarke) is portrayed very much like Jiminy Cricket, an inseparable companion to Pinocchio, though he acts by his own choice and not under orders from the Blue Fairy and accompanies him on his adventures by staying in his left pocket.
  • In Steve Barron's 1996 live action film The Adventures of Pinocchio, the Cricket is a CGI character named Pépé (voiced by David Doyle). As with Jiminy Cricket, he is portrayed in a more light-hearted manner than his stern book counterpart who dies early in the story. He is an optimistic character who tries to teach Pinocchio that "Miracles don't grow on trees. Miracles are made in the heart!" at the time when Pinocchio was tricked by Volpe and Felinet.
  • In the sequel The New Adventures of Pinocchio, Pepe the Cricket reappears and is voiced by Warwick Davis (replacing David Doyle who has died in 1997). He helps Pinocchio, Geppetto and Lampwick on their adventures after Pinocchio and Geppetto were turned into puppets and Lampwick was turned into a sea donkey fish while drinking a potion. He was first seen in the form of a Dwarfish Showman (also played by Warwick Davis) working for Madame Flambeau's circus. Towards the end of the film, he is seen allowing everybody to see Lorenzini as a Sea Monster after the magic river transformed Pinocchio, Geppetto, and Lampwick back into humans.
  • In the Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child episode "Pinocchio," the Cricket is actually a termite named Woody (voiced by Chris Rock) and is portrayed very much like Jiminy Cricket as an inseparable companion to Pinocchio a.k.a. Pinoak and has instructional orders from the Blue Fairy a.k.a. the Blues Fairy.
  • In Roberto Benigni's 2002 live action film Pinocchio, the Cricket also made an appearance and is played by Peppe Barra with John Cleese doing his English voice-dub. Like some of the animal characters depicted in this film, this version of the Cricket is a small human with antennae. The Cricket acts more similar to Jiminy Cricket and is a companion to Pinocchio.

References[edit]

  • Collodi, Le Avventure di Pinocchio 1883, Biblioteca Universale Rizzoli