I Am Not an Animal

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I Am Not an Animal
I Am Not an Animal DVD cover.jpeg
Cover of the DVD release
Genre Black comedy
Starring Steve Coogan
Amelia Bullmore
Julia Davis
Kevin Eldon
Arthur Mathews
Simon Pegg
John Shrapnel
Country of origin United Kingdom
No. of episodes 6
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) Baby Cow Productions
Original network BBC2
Original release 10 May – 14 June 2004

I Am Not an Animal is an animated black comedy[1] TV series telling the tale of highly intelligent animals rescued from a vivisectionist laboratory and forced to live on their own. The series was made and directed by Peter Baynham. It was produced by Baby Cow Productions and ran on BBC2 in the United Kingdom from 10 May to 14 June 2004. It has also aired on the ABC in Australia.

The title comes from the famous quote in The Elephant Man.


In the laboratory Vivi-Sec UK, a group of six animals are part of the fourth batch of Project S, an experiment designed to create talking animals.

The animals are given a sophisticated lifestyle in order for them to develop their intellect, living a luxurious life run by computers in something similar to a four-star hotel, unaware they are really part of a laboratory experiment. They have human-like personalities and names, wear specially designed clothes, speak in a pseudo-intellectual fashion, eat gourmet food, drink fine wines, read books and magazines and generally live like humans in luxury. Meanwhile, the other animals outside Project S are tortured with horrific experiments.

The animals in the experiment include:

A group of animal rights activists break into the laboratory to rescue the animals. Kieron is left behind, having his head removed from the rest of his body and being kept alive by machines. As the other animals are boarded into the activists' truck they don't know what's going on, and are joined by Niall (voiced by Arthur Mathews), a rabbit from an earlier batch of Project S which can only speak computer advice.

When one of the animals asks the activists if they will be stopping for a toilet break, they panic and crash the truck into a tree. The animals escape, and go their separate ways. After running into humans who are shocked, and other animals who can't speak as they do, they deduce they have somehow been transported into an alternative reality where only humans can speak and the other animals are enslaved by them (a reference to Planet of the Apes).

Meanwhile, Vivi-Sec UK graft Kieron's head onto the body of a gorilla and send him out to assassinate the other animals. Vivi-Sec UK also alerts the media that dangerous talking animals are on the loose.

The animals take shelter in an elderly lady's house, who calls her psychiatrist to tell him that there are talking animals at her house. Believing the elderly lady to have lost her mind, he has medics take her away, leaving the animals to live in her house.


Slate called it "a cheerfully sicko social commentary".[2] Los Angeles Times called it "deep, dark and funny".[1]


EP# Title Airdate
1 London Calling 10 May 2004
2 Planet of the Men and Women 17 May 2004
3 Money 24 May 2004
4 My Fair Mare 31 May 2004
5 A Star Is Hatched 7 June 2004
6 Home 14 June 2004


  1. ^ a b Lloyd, Robert (October 5, 2005). "Gaining Human Inhibitions – latimes". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 3, 2016. 
  2. ^ Stevens, Dana (October 5, 2005). "A Cheerfully Sicko Social Commentary from the BBC". Slate. Retrieved May 3, 2016. 

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