Stressed Eric

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Stressed Eric
Stressed Eric series two title card.jpg
Genre Animation
Dark comedy
Created by Carl Gorham
Written by Carl Gorham
Michael Hatt
Theme music composer =
Composer(s) Peter Baikie
Mat Clark
Jason McDermid
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 2
No. of episodes 13
Production
Executive producer(s) Gábor Csupó
Miles Bullough (season 2)
Editor(s) John Bryant
Running time 30 Min
Release
Original network BBC Two, MTV, TV2 (New Zealand)
Original release 20 April 1998 – 11 October 2000, 11 October 2003 (New Zealand)
External links
Website
Production website

Stressed Eric is a British cartoon series that was produced by Absolutely Productions for the BBC Two television channel in the United Kingdom and Television New Zealand. The series revolves around Eric Feeble, a middle class man who is always stressed, because of his family, work, co-workers, etc.

Overview[edit]

Eric Feeble is 40 years old, still upset over his divorce two years ago, lives in a middle class London house, and is always being kept under extreme amounts of pressure and stress from all aspects of life, represented by a throbbing vein in his temple. His two children, Claire and Brian, plague him with fear and worries every day. Claire is a frail six-year-old who is allergic to a large range of things such as wheat, ponies, spices etc.while Brian is a ten-year-old with learning problems who has been kept back three straight years in school, has an oral fixation, and has pica. The family's au pair housekeeper, Maria, is an eighteen-year-old Portuguese woman with a serious drinking problem; despite Eric's frequent attempts to keep her under control and focused, she seems to be passed-out drunk for hours at a time, often sprawled on a floor. His ex-wife, Liz, left him for a Buddhist, but she insists on phoning him up incessantly, which merely adds to his growing stress level. The next-door neighbours, the wealthy, successful and snobbish Perfect family, provide him a constant and painful view of what his life could have been.

Eric's workplace is absolutely no escape from his everyday problems. His boss, Paul Power (known as PP), is loud, rude and demanding; he has demoted Eric from Assistant Manager to a low-level clerk in an office sandwiched between the janitor's closet and the men's toilets. His secretary, Alison, is completely useless, spending all her "working hours" making and taking personal phone calls and shrilling rudely at Eric when he requests her attention.

At the end of almost every episode, as the climax of events cause Eric's stress to reach breaking point, the throbbing vein emerges from his temple and wraps itself around his neck, strangling him.

Characters[edit]

Main characters[edit]

  • Eric Feeble - Stressed out divorced father of two children. Eric is a kind, well-meaning man who loves his children. Although bitter and sarcastic about many aspects of his life, Eric genuinely tries to make the best out of situation and deeply loves his children, going to great lengths to make them proud. However, he normally fails due to no fault of his own, and the rare times he actually does well, something always happens to ruin it.
  • Claire Feeble - Daughter of Eric; allergic to just about everything. Despite this, she is an intelligent, curious, playful little girl. Due to her allergies, she has to eat special regulation food and is always sneaking ordinary food, which immediately makes her swell up.
  • Brian Feeble - Son of Eric; has been held back in school for 3 years straight and is always putting things in his mouth.
  • Maria Gonzalez - The Feeble family's punk-looking live-in au pair; she is Portuguese and always drunk or hungover. She also uses alcohol as perfume in the episode "Potato".

Major characters[edit]

  • Liz - Eric's eccentric ex-wife.
  • Ray Perfect - Snobbish and "perfect" next-door neighbour of Eric. Shares Eric's workplace, but is senior and consistently praised for his fine work.
  • Mrs. Perfect - Snobbish wife of Mr. Perfect. Catchphrase: "How art thou, Eric?"
  • Heather Perfect - Snobbish daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Perfect.
  • Paul Power, a.k.a. P.P - Boss of Eric who is usually very angry. Catchphrase: "Double arseburgers, Eric!"
  • Alison - Eric's useless secretary who spends all her time on the telephone gossiping to friends.
  • Doc - Eric's dementedly relaxed doctor, more interested in chasing women than treating Eric. He is the closest thing Eric has to a best friend.
  • Mrs. Wilson - An old lady who slowly tries in vain to post a letter which always falls from her hand and into a drain, sometimes with Eric to blame. Catchphrase: "Morning, Mister Eric. Just off to the post..."

Voice cast[edit]

A US adaptation replaced Mark Heap's voice with that of Hank Azaria.[1]

TV history[edit]

The show was first broadcast on BBC2 in April 1998 and ran for two series.[2][3]

Stressed Eric continued when Hibbert Ralph produced the second series. The second series was animated by Varga Studio instead.

List of episodes[edit]

Series 1[edit]

  1. Nativity - 20 April 1998
  2. Sex - 27 April 1998
  3. Pony - 11 May 1998
  4. Hospital - 18 May 1998
  5. Potato - 1 June 1998
  6. Tidy - 8 June 1998

Series 2[edit]

  1. Cricket - 31 August 2000
  2. Bursting - 6 September 2000
  3. Team - 13 September 2000
  4. Tent - 20 September 2000
  5. Crush - 27 September 2000
  6. Au Pair - 4 October 2000
  7. Drool - 11 October 2000

DVD Release[edit]

The Complete Stressed Eric Collection was released on DVD in the UK on 2 May 2011, with the following Special Features:

  • The Story of Stressed Eric
  • Drawing the Characters with Stig Bergqvist
  • Audio Commentaries
  • Animatic of Nativity Episode
  • BBC Trails
  • Storyboard Excerpt from Pony Episode

References[edit]

  1. ^ Barraclough, Leo (1998-08-03). "Azaria lends voice to 'Stressed Eric'". Variety. Retrieved 2013-08-24. 
  2. ^ "Nbc Yanks Up 'Stressed Eric'". NY Daily News. 1998-08-12. Retrieved 2013-08-24. 
  3. ^ "Entertainment | Stressed Eric goes Stateside". BBC News. 1998-08-11. Retrieved 2013-08-24. 

External links[edit]