Jamie and the Magic Torch
|Jamie and the Magic Torch|
|Created by||Cosgrove Hall|
|Written by||Brian Trueman|
|Narrated by||Brian Trueman & Kate Murray-Henderson (uncredited)|
|Theme music composer||Joe Griffiths; sung by Tony Steven|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of series||3|
|No. of episodes||39|
|Executive producer(s)||John Hambley|
|Running time||10 minutes|
|Original release||1976 – 1979|
Jamie and the Magic Torch is a British children's television series made by Cosgrove Hall for Thames Television and shown on the ITV network, running from 1976 to 1979. It was shown again in the 1980s to a new audience of children. The series was written and narrated by Brian Trueman, who later wrote shows such as Danger Mouse and Count Duckula for Cosgrove Hall, and Kate Murray-Henderson (uncredited) as the voice of Jamie's Mother and the character Nutmeg.
The programme was based around the young boy of the title and his torch. When shone on the floor, the torch opened up a hole into a fun dimension called Cuckoo Land.
The beginning of each episode had Jamie's mother tucking him into bed at night and saying, "Sleep well, Jamie." Then from under his bed, his pet bobtail dog Wordsworth would appear holding the torch in his mouth. Jamie would take the torch and shine it on the floor, opening up a portal to Cuckoo Land (which Wordsworth always got stuck in). The portal manifested itself as a helter skelter.
When they reached the end of the slide, they would fly out into Cuckoo Land from the bottom of a tree trunk and land on a trampoline. All of this was accompanied by a song, written by Joe Griffiths. Once in Cuckoo Land, the fun would begin.
Characters in Cuckoo Land
- Mr. Boo, who flies around in his 'submachine', obsessed with counting things.
- Officer Gotcha, who rides a unicycle, eats truncheons
- Strumpers Plunkett, who plays melodies on his trumpet nose
- Wellibob the cat, who does everything backwards
- Jo-Jo Help the unhelpful handyman
- Nutmeg the ragdoll
- The Yoo-hoo Bird, who plays tricks on and runs from Officer Gotcha.
- BullyBundy; the show business rabbit with oversized feet.
- Arthur, a robot (series 3 only)
|VHS Title||Release Date||Episodes|
|Bedtime Stories: Toad and Friends (TV8078)||6 November 1989||The Flying Rabbit, The House of Wellibob (Compilation VHS with 'The Wind in the Willows' and 'Cockleshell Bay')|
|Cult Kids Classics 2||5 March 2001||A Narrow Escape, The Ghost of Spiny Mountain (Compilation VHS with 'Danger Mouse', Chorlton and the Wheelies', 'Rainbow', 'Count Duckula' and 'The Sooty Show')|
Simon Sheridan The A to Z of Classic Children's Television (Reynolds & Hearn books, 2004, reprinted 2007) ISBN 1-903111-27-7. Contains an extensive chapter on Jamie and the Magic Torch, rare artwork and an interview with Brian Cosgrove.
The Eugene McGuinness video for Monsters Under the Bed was based on the cartoon, and copied the opening titles. The cartoon boy and his teddy bear landed in a nightmarish wood, where the bear got eaten, and the boy got stomped by a huge clawed foot.