Victor and Hugo

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Victor and Hugo
Also known as Victor and Hugo:
Bunglers in Crime
Format Animated series
Starring Jimmy Hibbert
David Jason
Brian Trueman
Composer(s) Dave Roylance
Country of origin United Kingdom
No. of series 2
No. of episodes 30
Production
Running time 22 minutes
Production company(s) Cosgrove Hall for
Thames Television
Distributor Fremantle Media
Broadcast
Original channel ITV Network (CITV)
Picture format 4:3
Original run 6 September 1991 (1991-09-06) – 29 December 1992 (1992-12-29)

Victor and Hugo, Bunglers in Crime is an animated series made by Cosgrove Hall for Thames Television and screened on CITV from 6 September 1991 to 29 December 1992 and is a spin off from Count Duckula.

The series centres on the exploits of two bumbling French criminals - the eponymous brothers of the title. Despite referencing the French author Victor Hugo in their names, both brothers are unintelligent.

The plot of each episode dealt with Victor and Hugo and their English-based business "Naughtiness International" being hired by crime figures to steal something. Victor would come up with a "meticulous plan" to achieve this goal, which was routinely botched by Hugo. The episodes would traditionally end with the brothers imprisoned.

Recurring characters[edit]

Victor[edit]

The taller of the brothers, Victor is also clearly the leader of "Naughtiness International". Victor's two most striking characteristics are his fedora hat (worn all the time) and his manicured moustache, which enables him to appear suave. Victor's English is significantly better than Hugo's, although he is constantly at risk of spoonerisms. Despite his constant raging at Hugo, Victor has shown more than once that he secretly cares deeply about his brother, such as in the episode "Dummy Run" when he thought that Hugo had frozen to death. Victor was voiced by Jimmy Hibbert.

Hugo[edit]

Victor's little brother, Hugo always wore a beret and looked like a burglar (right down to his ever-present eye-mask). Always subservient to "My Victor", Hugo was often the butt of slapstick comedy. While his intelligence and English skills were notably inferior to Victor's, Hugo was able to make sense of some of his brother's spoonerisms, and he would often describe their chosen profession as "criminiminals". Hugo, despite the notable handicap of a lack of ability, was always given the job of driving the van. Hugo's voice bears a striking resemblance to the Goon Show character Bluebottle, and the two characters often make similar exclamations. Hugo was voiced by David Jason.

Interpoll[edit]

A talking parrot with attitude, Interpoll lived in Victor and Hugo's van and provided a voice of reason in rapid-fire Cockney English. It is not saying very much to comment that Interpoll was by far the most intelligent of the group. Aside from residing in the van constantly, Interpoll was also able to function as a telephone - his beak was put to the person's ear. Victor also used him to dial out by pressing his chest like a keypad. In one episode, Hugo used Interpoll as a makeshift pair of scissors. Interpoll was also voiced by David Jason.

Lord and Lady Hobbes-Suttclyffe, Piers Flimsy and Ponsward the butler[edit]

The token "English country family" from which the brothers would often have to burgle, the Hobbes-Suttclyffes lived at Hobbes-Suttclyffe Hall, where Lord Hobbes-Suttclyffe kept his elephant gun and his wife hosted dinner parties. Their butler Ponsward, was the brains of the household while their nephew Piers fancied himself as something of a detective, in the manner of Lord Peter Wimsey.

The Dog[edit]

A small dog played a very important role in every episode. At various points - often when the plot appeared to be flagging, this dog would run up one of Victor's trouser legs, remove his underpants and run off with them down his other leg. This running gag also appeared at the end of every episode, prefaced by the statement by a glum Victor that "At least in here, nothing else can possibly go wrong!". Hugo particularly enjoyed the appearances of the dog, often muttering "good doggie!". In production material from the studio, the dog's name is given as Baskerville (as in the Sherlock Holmes tale The Hound of the Baskervilles), although, he is never referred to as such on screen.

Penelope[edit]

Penelope was Hugo's pet earwig who lived in a matchbox. Hugo would always affectionally refer to her as 'My Penelope'. Penelope did not actually speak, instead communicating by squeaking, and rarely came out of her matchbox. On the rare occasions, that she did come out, she looked like a small grey bug with blonde hair and a dress.

Monsieur Meccaneaux[edit]

Despite his French name, Meccaneaux was a working-class accented English rat who was frequently called by the brothers to repair the van (generally, after Hugo's driving had caused an accident) and, on occasion, to provide other forms of technical expertise - such as the building of the Concrete Destruction Ray (known by Victor as the "Discreet Correction Ray"). Meccaneaux was almost unintelligible, due mainly to his habit of interrupting his own trains of thought as he went along and punctuating certain observations with laughter. On one occasion, Hugo politely asked Victor what the mechanic had just said, only to be met with the response "he say...he say...I am not sure what he say.". He would also appear very quickly at the scene of the accident once requested over the radio by Victor.

The plot[edit]

The Opening Crime[edit]

Most episodes began with the brothers on the run from having committed another crime. These are usually heard reported via radio or TV news report. However, as the opening dialogue continued, it always became apparent that Hugo had done precisely the wrong thing. One episode, for example, has Victor asking Hugo about how he thought they went in robbing "The Duke of Battersea's Home". Hugo's response is "The Duke of Battersea, he is having a lot of doggies, yes?", to which Victor corrects him, "The Duke of Battersea, he is having a lot of doggies, no! That was the Battersea Dogs Home!" Similarly, an episode begins with a news broadcast about the theft of the Christmas lights from Piccadilly Circus. Over this report, we hear Victor telling Hugo that, "I said 'Pull up the van at the lights in Piccadilly Circus.', not 'Pull down the lights in Piccadilly Circus and put them in the van.'!"

The Phone Call[edit]

With only one exception, the brothers receive their latest commission (around which the plot of the episode revolves) by telephone. The phone is located in the van and Victor answers it - as Hugo is engaged in driving (badly). In one episode, Hugo attempts to assume superiority in the partnership and answers the phone himself. The standard greeting on the phone is "Hello, this is Victor of Victor and Hugo: Naughtiness International, no crime too big, no crime too small. How may I help you?", delivered in the cod-French accent adopted by Victor. Hugo's alternate rendering begins, "Hello, this is Hugo of Hugo and Victor: Naughtiness International, no big small crime too..." before trailing off.

The Meticulous Plan[edit]

In his capacity as the brains of the partnership, Victor would devise a "meticulous plan" and explain it to Hugo - who at one point refers to it as a "ridiculous plan". Hugo would then repeat it back to Victor in a garbled form, full of spoonerisms and other puns. One example of this, is the plan to steal a quick-growth formula from Professor Peak at St Spooner's Hospital in order to let a criminal mastermind grow an army of giant ants to devour the world. Hugo renders this as "We peek at the spoon in the hospital and grow quickly a professor's formula that will take the ants to the train.". Invariably, the plan goes awry. This is usually flagged by Victor's question of "Hugo, did you [perform a particular action]?" Hugo's response takes the form of, "Yes" (at which Victor looks pleased) "And no" (at which he looks crestfallen) "But mainly...no" (at which time something exceedingly dangerous occurs).

The Arrest[edit]

Generally as a result of the dangerous omission by Hugo, the brothers are arrested and jailed. Victor takes this opportunity to explain that "At least in here, nothing else can possibly go wrong!" - at which point the dog steals his underpants. Victor sometimes chases after the dog. After the dog steals Victor's underpants, Hugo scolds the dog for being naughty...only to whisper about how he likes the dog.

Catchphrases[edit]

Much of the humour of the series came from catchphrases. Among these were:

  • That is what I said. - Victor, on being corrected (by anyone).
  • Yes, my Victor. - Hugo
  • What is it that it is, my Victor? - Hugo, using a direct English translation of the French phrase "Qu'est-ce que c'est, mon Victor?", which would more usually be translated as "What is it, Victor?"
  • Nothing else can possibly go wrong. - Victor (normally), the cue for the dog to remove his underpants.
  • Where's me tablets? - Interpoll expressing surprise and consternation.
  • That's what I think, anyway. - Hugo's summation of the situation.
  • Do you understand the plan? - Victor, to Hugo, who rarely did.
  • Yes and no, mainly no. - Hugo, answering Victor's question.
  • Victor and Hugo, Naughtiness International, no crime too big no crime too small, how may I help you? - Victor answering the phone
  • Bon! What? Good! Oh!
  • Help, the police! No, help!! - Hugo's panic attacks on hearing the word "police".
  • Mama always wanted for me to be a [occupation]. - Hugo's reaction to Victor's disguise ideas (including a general and a doctor).
  • We are famous international criminals. - Hugo inadvertently revealing his identity.
  • Brain of a ... - Victor, on realising Hugo's innate stupidity. This is followed by something else, usually an inanimate object - "You have the brain of a letterbox" for example.
  • This is all your fault.
  • But Victor it was not my fault [lists things that happened]. - Whenever the duo get caught.
  • This is usually followed by Victor's famous saying to Hugo: "It is your fault. It is all your fault. It is ALWAYS your fault."
  • The monies and the jewels and the golds and the so-forths. - Victor's traditional litany of what they will steal.

Opening sequence[edit]

The opening sequence features the two brothers preparing to blow up a safe as the theme music is sung. Unfortunately for them, the explosion propels the safe through the ceiling and, in the confusion, they both run out of what is revealed to be an upper-storey window.

Having fallen to the ground, they enter their van and prepare to drive off. Victor, laughing, tells Hugo "You know Hugo, it will be alright this time. Nothing can go wrong!" Hugo responds "Yes Victor, I know!" and begins to drive. At this point, the van falls to pieces and the brothers escape that disaster only to find their way blocked by police cars. They turn around and are immediately hit by the falling safe, the door of which falls off to reveal Hugo making his alternative suggestion of the title - "Hugo and Victor. That's what I think, anyway.".

Episode list[edit]

Season One:

  1. Pandomonium! - First broadcast: 6 September 1991
  2. Special Event - First broadcast: 13 September 1991
  3. Water Boobies - First broadcast: 20 September 1991
  4. Cowboys and Indiscipline - First broadcast: 27 September 1991
  5. Hyp-Not-isn't - First broadcast: 18 October 1991
  6. Automanic Transmission - First broadcast: 25 October 1991
  7. The Hole Truth and Nothing... - First broadcast: 1 November 1991
  8. The Case of the Vose Vase - First broadcast: 8 November 1991
  9. Dummy Run - First broadcast: 15 November 1991
  10. Scout's Dishonour - First broadcast: 22 November 1991
  11. Escort Red-Handed - First broadcast: 29 November 1991
  12. Private Ears - First broadcast: 6 December 1991
  13. Blunder on the Orient Express - First broadcast: 13 December 1991

Season Two:

  1. Acting the Goat - First broadcast: 11 September 1992
  2. Artful Dodgers - First broadcast: 18 September 1992
  3. Is There a Doctor in the House? - First broadcast: 25 September 1992
  4. Woof and Tumble - First broadcast: 2 October 1992
  5. Treasure Haunt - First broadcast: 9 October 1992 (Count Duckula, Igor and Nanny make a guest appearances)
  6. Tempers Fugit - First broadcast: 16 October 1992
  7. French Exchange - First broadcast: 23 October 1992 (Dangermouse makes a guest appearance)
  8. The Poultry-Geist - First broadcast: 30 October 1992 (Nanny, from Count Duckula, makes another guest appearance. Also featuring Castle Duckula)
  9. Jester Moment - First broadcast: 6 November 1992
  10. Stone Me! - First broadcast: 13 November 1992
  11. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Dolt - First broadcast: 20 November 1992
  12. Pie in the Sky - First broadcast: 27 November 1992
  13. Unstable Fable - First broadcast: 4 December 1992
  14. The Hound of the Hobbes-Sutclyffes - First broadcast: 11 December 1992 (Guest appearances by Count Duckula bit-players: Hawkeye Soames and Dr. Potson)
  15. Yule be Sorry! - First broadcast: 18 December 1992
  16. But Me, No Butlers! - First broadcast: 24 December 1992
  17. Do-in Yourself - First broadcast: 29 December 1992 (Another appearance by Count Duckula bit-players: Hawkeye Soames and Dr. Potson)

Credits[edit]

Season 1[edit]

  • Voices: David Jason, Jimmy Hibbert, Brian Trueman
  • Written by: Brian Trueman and Jimmy Hibbert
  • Original Music by: Dave Roylance
  • Designers: Andy Roper, Jon Doyle, Paul Salmon, Stephen Simpson and Jez Hall
  • Supervised by: Ben Turner
  • Layouts: José Maria Zumel, Ricardo Machuca, Miguel Angel Aisa, Jamie Diaz Studios, Tom Bailey, Ted Pettengell, Neil Graham and Trevor Ricketts
  • Colour Models: Bruce McNally, Carol A. Hughes and John Martin
  • Storyboards: Jaime Diaz Studios, Dan Whitworth, Andy Janes, Wayne Thomas, Harold Whitaker, Dino Athanassiou, Bruce McNally, Keith Scoble, John Offord, Andy Roper, Vincent James, Jean Flynn, Jez Hall, Mike Whaite, Billy Allison, John Martin and Gregory Tiernan
  • Special Effects: Carlos Alfonso, Garry Owen, Jackie Mitchell, Roy Huckerby, David Birkinshaw
  • Backgrounds: Milagros Banares, Conchi Echare, Roberto Garcia, Miguel Angel Gil, David Jariaz, Higashi Taruma, Beverly Bush, Maggie Riley, Pete Hillier, Weston Samuels, Philip Jackson, Rosie Mafrici
  • Supervised by: Carlos Alfonso
  • Key Animators: Mariano Rueda, Luis Varela, Eduard Sasu, Francisco Tena, Bujor Stefanescu, Angel Jariego, Valentin Cain, Fernando Jariego, Manuel G. Galiana, Pedro Delgado, Carmen Sanchez, Pedro Jorge Gil, Ignacio Amero, Sergio Alfonso, Valentin Domenech, Angel Garcia, Vicente Rodriguez, Jose Luis Torres, Paca Morena, Manuel Sirgo, Maria Elena Marquez, Baltasar Pedrosa, Pedro Jose Molina, Fernando Gallart, Juan Antonio Serrano, Big Jack Bradley, Meryl Edge, Dave Livesey, Denise Heywood, Alistair Fell, Andy Wilson, Claire Grey, Malcolm McGookin, Adrian Bell
  • Animators: Les Brooksbank, Paul Greenall, Mair Thomas
  • Animation Checkers: Phil McMylor, Andy Bax
  • Assistant Animators: Sandra Sasu, Julio Altozano, Maria Luisa Ruis, Luis Amor, Armando Berdones, Borja Montoro, Mario Moroillo, Fernando Ollero, Angel Marcano, Mercedes Manzanvo, Marta Diaz, Jesus Albiol, Juan Jose Mora, Maria Isabel Fernandez, Jennie Langley, Bob Sparkes, Judy Pilsbury, Karen Heywood, Helen Michael, Helen Smith, Steven A. Pleydell-Pearce, Bill Tapp, Craig Whittle, Michael Whaite, Steve Horrocks, Paul Jesper
  • Checkers: Carmen G. Sangrador, Maribel Lopez, Laura Cosgrove, Sue Halliwell, Yasodha Huckerby, Bev James, Katie Nutter
  • Cel Painting Supervisors: Laura Cosgrove, Lorraine Thomas
  • Colourist: Joan Jones
  • Cel Painters: Carmen G. Sangrador, Angeles Vacas, Maribel Lopez, Marimar Fernandez, Loli Pina, Marta Vegue, Susana Diez, Asuncion Tomas, Maria Jose Alvarez, Evelia Rodriguez, Julia Garcia, Angeles Sanz, Maite Garcia, Antonia Ucar, Tere Diego, Ana de la Guerra, Elvira Hernandez, Concha Calabuig, Elena Garcia, Mari Carmen Rivas, Herminia Burgaleta, Pilar Quesada, Maria Dolores Torres, Carla Abraham, Althea Deane, Marie Dembinski, Joyce Flowers, Helen Frazier, Mark Fulton, Stefania Giani, Lynn Hardie, Andrea Hough, Christine Kershaw, Anne Place, Karl Scoble, Gloria Vassiliou
  • Xerox: Alex Alphonso, Jose Luis Aisa, Marta Rodriguez, Julio Angel Garcia, Agustin Sepulveda, Tony McAleese, Don Geering, Joan Simmons
  • Camera: Victorio Gonzalez, Guillermon Rodriguez, Peter Kidd, Frank Hardie, Wendy Senior, Mark Sutton
  • Video Line Test: Eva Maria Montera, Phil Atack, Lesley White
  • Film Editors: Leo Casserly, Nibs Senior
  • Sound Effects Editors: Bob Ashton, Jane Hicks
  • Dubbing Mixer: John Wood
  • Music Coordinator: John Merrifield
  • Digital Dub Editors: Darren Cox and Simon Hall
  • Animation Director: Carlos Alfonso, Jean Flynn, Willard Kitchen
  • Assistant Animation Director: John Offord
  • Pre-Production Coordinator: Ed Williams
  • Production Controllers: Julio Diez, Sian Thomas
  • Production Co-Ordinator: Simon White
  • Post Production Manager: Chris Phillips
  • Executive Producer: John Hambley
  • Directed by: Brian Cosgrove
  • Produced by: Brian Cosgrove and Mark Hall
  • A Brian Cosgrove / Mark Hall Production for Thames Television
  • Copyright MCMXCI Cosgrove Hall Productions Limited, Thames Television plc

Season 2[edit]

  • Voices: David Jason, Jack May, Edward Kelsey, Brian Trueman, Jimmy Hibbert
  • Written by: Brian Trueman and Jimmy Hibbert
  • Original Music by: Dave Roylance and Bob Galvin
  • Design Supervisor: Ben Turner
  • Designers and Layouts: Andy Roper, Jon Doyle, Paul Salmon, Stephen Simpson, Jez Hall, Tom Bailey, Neil Graham, Ted Pettengell and Martin Edwards
  • Colour Models: Colour Crew
  • Storyboards: Jaime Diaz Studios, Ian Whitworth, Dino Athanassiou, Bruce McNally, Ellen Meske, Keith Scoble, Jez Hall, Chris Randall, Ian Jackson, Jean Flynn, John Millington, Martin Edwards, Stephen Simpson
  • Special Effects: Garry Owen, Jackie Mitchell, Roy Huckerby and David Birkinshaw
  • Backgrounds: Maggie Riley, Beverly Bush, Michelle Graney, Pete Hillier, Philip Jackson, Weston Samuels, Rosie Mafrici, Milagros Banares, Conchi Echare, Roberto Garcia, Miguel Angel Gil, David Jariaz, Higashi Taruma
  • Key Animators: Big Jack Bradley, Meryl Edge, Dave Livesey, Denise Heywood, Alistair Fell, Andy Wilson, Claire Grey, Malcolm McGookin and Adrian Bell
  • Animators: Les Brooksbank, Paul Greenall, Mair Thomas, Mark Povey, Alan Lee Moult, Tim Window, Sandra Ryan, Richard Bazley, Rick Villeneuve, Brian Ainsworth, Ian Whitworth, Lloyd Sutton, Phil McMylor, Keith Scoble and Robert Brown
  • Assistant Animators: Jennie Langley, Bob Sparkes, Judy Pilsbury, Karen Heywood, Helen Michael, Helen Smith, Steven A. Playdell-Peuroy, Bill Tapp, Craig Whittle, Michael Whaite, Steve Horrocks and Paul Jesper
  • Checkers: Laura Cosgrove, Bev James, Sue Halliwell, Katie Nutter and Yasodha Huckerby
  • Colourist: Joan Jones
  • Cel Painters: Carla Abraham, Stefania Giana, Althea Deane, Lynn Hardie, Marie Dembinski, Andrea Hough, Joyce Flowers, Christine Kershaw, Helen Frazer, Anne Place, Mark Fulton, Karl Scoble, Gloria Vassiliou, Carmen G. Sangrador, Angeles Vacas, Maribel Lopez, Marimar Fernandez, Loli Pina, Marta Vague, Susana Diez, Asuncion Tomas, Maria Jose Alvarez, Evelia Rodriguez, Julia Garcia, Angeles Sanz, Maite Garcia, Antonio Ucar, Tere Diego, Ana de la Gierro, Elena Garcia, Mari Carmen Rivas, H. B., P.G., Maria Dolores Torres
  • Supervised by: Lorraine Thomas and Laura Cosgrove
  • Xerox: Tony McAleese, Don Geering and Joan Simmons
  • Camera: Peter Kidd, Frank Hardie, Wendy Senior and Mark Sutton
  • Video Line Tests: Phil Atack and Lesley White
  • Film Editors: Leo Casserly and Eilis Ward
  • Sound Effects Editors: Steve Perry and Geoff Lawson
  • Dubbing Mixer: John Wood
  • Music Coordinator: John Merrifield
  • Digital Dub Editors: Darren Cox and Simon Hall
  • Animation Directors: Willard Kitchen, Jean Flynn, John Offord and Carlos Alfonso
  • Assistant Animation Director: John Offord
  • Animation Checkers: Phil McMylor and Andy Bax
  • Pre-Production Coordinator: Ed Williams
  • Production Controllers: Sian Thomas and Julio Diez
  • Production Coordinator: Simon White
  • Post Production Manager: Chris Phillips
  • Executive Producer: John Hambley
  • Produced by: Brian Cosgrove and Mark Hall
  • Directed by: Brian Cosgrove
  • A Brian Cosgrove / Mark Hall Production for Thames Television
  • © Cosgrove Hall Productions Limited, Thames Television plc MCMXCII

External links[edit]