Logo (in Russian) and characters. Back row, L to R: Berry, Olga, Dokko, Chiko, Krash, Carlin. Front row, L to R: Rosa, Wally, Pin.
|Directed by||Denis Chernov|
|Voices of||(See article)|
|Country of origin||Russia|
|No. of episodes||208 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||6 min., 30 sec. (cartoon shorts) (including 20 sec. intro)|
|Original channel||CTC and Russia 1|
|Original release||May 7, 2004 – 2012|
Kikoriki, known in Russian as Smeshariki (Russian: Смеша́рики), is a Russian animated television series consisting of 208 episodes of 6 minutes and 30 seconds each, aimed at children of 3 to 8 years. The first episode premiered in Russia on May 7, 2004. English-language distribution rights to the series were acquired by 4Kids Entertainment from worldwide distributor Fun Game Media, Munich and began airing as part of The CW4Kids block on The CW on September 13, 2008, under the name GoGoRiki. Fun Game Media is also producing a European version, which began airing on KI.KA on December 8, 2008.
The Smeshariki (the name is derived from смешные "smeshnye" meaning "funny", and шарики "shariki" meaning "little balls") are stylized rounded animals. Each of the nine characters has a unique personality and a range of interests with no negative characters among them. Plots are built not on the battle of opposing forces but on the unexpected situations the animated characters stumble upon in their interactions deemed similar to the ones that children may encounter in their everyday lives. Many of the topics foreground the guidance that friendship and community provide to the individual making his or her way in the world. Complex themes and specific cultural references place this cartoon firmly within the Russian tradition of animation. Much attention was devoted to the humor in the series, some of which has attracted adults as well.
GoGoRiki began its second season in the United States on August 22, 2009.
- 1 Creators
- 2 Characters
- 2.1 Pogoriki/Крош(Krosh)/Krash/Kurashi-Kun (Rabbit)
- 2.2 Chikoriki/Ёжик(Yozhik)/Chiko/Chi-Kun (Hedgehog)
- 2.3 Wolliriki/Бараш(Barash)/Wally/Basho-Kun (Ram)
- 2.4 Rosariki/Нюша(Nyusha)/Rosa/Bota-Chan (Pig)
- 2.5 Bigoriki/Кар Карыч(Kar Karych)/Carlin/Karasu-San (Crow)
- 2.6 Olgariki/Совунья(Sovunya)/Olga/Zukusensei-San (Owl)
- 2.7 Ottoriki/Пин(Pin)/Otto/Pingama-Kun (Penguin)
- 2.8 Docoriki/Лосяш(Losyash)/Dokko/Shika-Kun (Moose)
- 2.9 Boboriki/Копатыч(Kopatych)/Berry/Garudikuma-Kun (Bear)
- 2.10 Roboriki/Биби(Bibi)/Robo/Roboto-San (Robot)
- 3 Minor characters
- 4 Changes in the 4Kids adaptation
- 5 Film
- 6 Episodes
- 7 References
- 8 External links
The series was created as part of the cultural-educational project "World Without Violence" as part of the federal program "Forming bulwarks of tolerance and preventing extremism in Russian society". It is made with the help of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation and with the participation of the company "Master-Film" at the computer animation studio "Peterburg", which was created in March 2003 specifically for Smeshariki.
- Artistic supervisor: Anatoliy Prokhorov
- General producer: Ilya Popov
- Co-producers: Aleksandr Gerasimov, Vyacheslav Mayasov
- Leading director: Denis Chernov
- Leading writer: Aleksey Lebedev
- Art director: Salavat Shaykhinurov
In the English version, all nine of the main characters' American names have the suffix "-riki" in them.
Krash is a sky blue rabbit who firmly believes that everything in the world must be interesting and fun. He loves doing adventurous things such as hiking in the mountains (in the episode "Good News") and diving for treasures. He does not like to fulfill his promises if it is difficult (in the episode "Hives of Boboriki"). He once lost his entire crop of carrots to a slot machine (in the episode "Big Whoop"). He was voiced by Dan Green.
- Voice: Anton Vinogradov (Russian) / Dan Green (English)
Chiko is a magenta hedgehog who is quiet and behaved. He is not adventurous like his best friend Krash; this is because those adventures almost always end poorly for him (as in the episode "Good News"). He tries to fulfill all of his promises, no matter how unpalatable they are (as in the episode "Promises"). Unlike Krash, he believes in "Father Frost" ("Santa Claus" in English (in the episode "Operation 'Father Frost'"). His house is in the form of a mushroom and is surrounded by a small garden with apples. Chiko likes to collect various things, and this once almost cost him his friendship with Krash (in the episode "Collection"). He likes to grow cacti. He was voiced by Jason Anthony Griffith.
- Voice: Vladimir Postnikov (Before voice - Anton Vinogradov) (Russian) / Jason Anthony Griffith (English)
Wally is a lavender ram who is often dramatic. He loves to create poetry, though it doesn't always come to him. He sometimes goes to extraordinary lengths to find inspiration (in the episode "Play, Soccer!"). Wally is a "night owl" in that he goes to sleep late and wakes up late (in the episode "The Living Clock"). He's afraid of heights (in the episode "The Lucky One"). He dabbles in music sometimes, though sometimes with poor results (in the episode "La"). Sometimes through outside circumstances he finds himself in an adventure (in the episode "Go Sailing"). He feels that becoming sick is a good thing. Wally appears to be attracted to Rosa in turn, but is much less outgoing about it. He was voiced by Wayne Grayson.
His Russian name Barash (Бараш) is an abbreviation of Barashek (Барашек) that means a cute ram.
- Voice: Vadim Bochanov (Russian) / Wayne Grayson (English)
Beautiful Rosa is a light pink pig who wants to become a princess. More than anything else, she likes to beautify herself and read books about princes and knights (as in the episode "A Prince for Nyusha"). She is afraid of scary stories (as in the episode "A Scary Story for Nyusha" a.k.a. "Scary Stories"). She dreams of becoming a beauty queen (as in the episode "Miss Universe"). She can't cook blintzes, but is learning how to (in the episode "Maslenitsa"), and one time went on a submarine to look for pirate gold as ballast (as in the episode "Ballast") a.k.a. "Treasure Hunt". She loves when guests come to visit her, rather than when she comes as a guest to someone else's place (in the episode "How to Quickly Gather Friends" a.k.a. "It's About Time"). She seems to be attracted to Wally, She also helps Olga cook. She was voiced by Bella Hudson.
Her Russian name Nyusha (Russian: Нюша) means a little name from Russian Anastasiya, Anna, Inna or Tanya girl names. Also it can mean Piggy (as rhyme for Hryusha (Russian: Хрюша) or a shortening for svinyusha (Russian: Свинюша), a colloquial affectionate diminutive word for Свинья, pig).
- Voice: Svetlana Pismichenko (Russian) / Bella Hudson (English)
Carlin is a dark blue crow who is an artist in the widest sense of the word. Sometimes, his artistry leads to some bad results: for example, he once hit a goal into his own net because he tried to hit a goal into the opposing net in an artistic way ("Football, First Time"). He believes that one should sleep during the day as well. Carlin once destroyed eight telegraph devices with a hammer that Krash and Chiko found in Otto's stores, after they started communicating with each other exclusively through them (in the episode "The Telegraph"). He used to be a magician in the circus, and has a large interest in the rest of the world. His house is peculiar in that it is painted only on the front. Despite being a crow, he appears incapable of flight. He was voiced by Mike Pollock.
His Russian name Kar Karych (Кар Карыч) stands for name and patronymic. "Kar" means Caw. So a translation could be Caw Cawson.
- Voice: Sergey Mardar (Russian) / Mike Pollock (English)
Olga is a purple owl who is the doctor of the village. She can cure anything, though she often tends to misdiagnose illnesses. She lives in the den of a big tree on a high hill in the north-east of the country. She teaches Rosa how to cook pancakes (in the episode "Pancake Week") and had a book of recipes for almost any occasion until Rosa accidentally ruined it. If anyone is depressed, she tries to raise their spirits (as in the episode "Plywood Sun"). She can be a bit scatterbrained at times, as she often tries to do many things at once. As with Carlin, she, too, appears incapable of flight. Though nobody's age is revealed, she and Carlin seem to be the oldest. She was voiced by Jessica Calvello.
Her Russian name Sovunya (Совунья) formed from the word Sova (Russian: Сова, owl) with Russian suffix -unya (-унья), which mean "attend to", "someone who does it".
- Voice: Sergey Mardar (Russian) / Jessica Calvello (English)
Otto is a German black and white penguin who is a self-taught inventor. He constructs anything from anything and does not care how well it works; to him, the process is the most important thing. He once constructed a garbage incinerator that ate half of his own fence and notebook and Chiko's doormat (in the episode "The Snore Energy"). This machine helped them later when they found in their lagoon several dozen leaking barrels of oil (in the episode "Sea In Trouble"). He made a computer for Dokko (in the episode "Triumph of Reason"), a lawn mower for Boboriki (in the episode "Repair is a Collective Job"), a snowmobile for himself (in the episode "Where Does the Old Year Go?"), a fireworks machine (in the episode "Day of Fairness"), a robot for Krash and Chiko, whom they couldn't take (in the episode "Metallic Nanny"), and the robot Robo. He has an irrational distaste for gaspacho, a soup traditionally served chilled (which Otto considers wrong, as he feels soup should be hot). He sleeps in a specially-equipped refrigerator which stands in his home. He was voiced by Darren Dunstan.
In the prequel movie "Kikoriki", Otto worked as a night watchman at a museum.
His Russian name Pin (Пин) is an abbreviation of Пингвин (penguin).
Voice: Michail Chernyak (Russian), Darren Dunstan (English)
Dokko is a golden yellow moose who is an eccentric scientist. His home is filled with books and a computer built by Otto. He can predict the weather (in the episode "Weather Forecasters") and the future (in the episode "Unexpected Luck"). When Krash, Chiko, and Wally were climbing the tallest mountain, Dokko was the one keeping in contact with them (in the episode "Good News"). He tends to be quite patronizing when explaining something to someone, though he does often know what he's talking about. He is rather eccentric, and can be quite unpredictable, such as when he wanted to become a butterfly and when he went on a hunger strike since Pluto was no longer considered a planet. He was voiced by David Wills.
His Russian name Losyash (Лосяш) is formed from the word Los' (Russian: Лось, moose) in an analogy with "Barash".
Voice: Michail Chernyak (Russian), David Wills (English)
Berry is an orange bear who lives as a farmer, capable of growing everything except pineapples. He has several fields adjoining his property, on which he grows wheat and fagopyrum. Otto sprays them with insecticide them with his seaplane (as in the episode "Flights in Dream and Feel"), and it is there that Chiko drew his portrait. Berry owns several beehives and occasionally binges on honey, which he is allergic to. He was voiced by David Wills.
In the prequel movie "Kikoriki", Berry was an actor for a superhero television series, playing the role of Lucien.
His Russian Kopatych (Russian: Копатыч) is formed from the word Kopat' (Russian: Копать, to dig, to shovel) with Russian patronymic suffix -ich (-ич or -ыч)
Voice: Michail Chernyak (Russian), David Wills (voice actor) (English)
An intelligent, yellow and silver robot which Otto created. First he learned everything that Otto could teach him, and then disappeared (in the episode "Roboriki and His Dad"). After some time he came back and it was found out that he had been in space and had come to visit for a little while (in the episode "Roboriki's Holidays"). After some time Otto decided to go and look for him (in the episode "Cosmic Odyssey").
His Russian name Bibi (Биби) is the onomatopoeic sound he produces
Voice: Eric Stuart (English)
- The Iron Nanny
A robot which Pin invented, but it went out of control due to its programming; it sees everyone as a toddler and treats them as such. It was seen in two episodes: "Movie Madness" and "What a Chore". In later episodes it becomes a friend of the main cast.
- Dokko's Evil Clone
A clone of Docoriki, who he had created years ago; his personality is arrogant and destructive, just like Dokko's used to be. From the cartoon "Double Dokko." He was voiced by David Wills. Voice: David Wills (voice actor) (English)
- Shadow Prince Loveamore
A character from a ghost story that Krash and Chiko had told to Rosa; she later encountered a mysterious stranger who might have been the handsome prince (although it isn't made clear if the meeting actually took place or if it was just a dream of Rosa's). From the episode "Scary Stories." He makes cameo appearances in other episodes. His Russian name Black Lovelace is an allusion to the antagonist of Clarissa novel, whose name became appellative in Russian culture, while his Spanish-style appearance rather reminds Don Juan. He was voiced by Eric Stuart.
A pretty female hedgehog whose picture Chiko found in the ocean near the shore; Chiko believed that she was real and needed to be rescued, but later found out that the picture was just a label from a lemonade bottle. From the cartoon "Sweet Lily." She was voiced by Sarah Heinke.
- The professor/Professor Mendeleyev
A Scientist that is related to Dokko. He told Rosariki about how to make a magic wand in a dream.
- Pluto Aliens
Seen in the episode "Pluto's Hero", they gave Dokko a planet badge for going on a hunger strike to protest Pluto no longer being considered a planet. They also planned to destroy the Earth in retaliation for the insult, but Doco managed to talk them out of it. Voiced by Eric Stuart (English)
Changes in the 4Kids adaptation
Unlike in other translations, the American 4Kids adaptation had two changes:
- References to Russian culture were removed or sometimes changed to their American equivalents. For instance, the episode "Operation Father Frost" was changed to "Operation Santa Claus".
- Some instances of Russian text (mostly the characters' names when written) were changed to English.
On January 24, 2007, it was announced that a Smeshariki feature film was to be made by the St. Petersburg company "Marmelad-media" (which owns the brand) to be released on December 2011. This movie was shot in 3D CGI, unlike the 2D Flash-animated series.
An initial budget of $1 million was given to produce a "test film" to show to international partners. According to Marmelad-media's general director Ilya Popov, the final budget would depend on a number of factors, such as whether it will be sold internationally (in which case the budget would be up to $15 million) or limited to Russia (in which case it will cost around $3–4 million). Popov considered spending anything over $5 million to be unprofitable (the highest-grossing Russian animated film to date, Ilya Muromets and Nightingale the Robber, cost $2.5 million and made just under $10 million; since around half of the profits usually go to the distributors, if it had cost over $5 million it would not have been profitable). The film was released domestically in December 2011, but received a limited release in the UK in early 2012. The film is considered a well thought-through prequel, its plot explaining events that brought the nine animal characters together in the first place.
- "GoGoRiki confirmed for fall 2008". Retrieved 2008-08-11.[dead link]
- "4Kids announces fall 2008 Lineups for Fox and The CW". Retrieved 2008-09-05.[dead link]
- Fun Game Media: News. Retrieved December 7, 2008.
- KI.KA. Sendungen von A-Z. "KIKORIKI". Retrieved December 7, 2008.
- (Russian)Ilya Muromets and Nightingale the Robber profile at Kinoafisha.ru. Accesesed on: November 20, 2008.