Tayo the Little Bus

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Tayo the Little Bus
루돌프 타요.JPG
Written byChoi Jong-il
Directed byKim Min-sung
Voices ofTayo:
Jul Kohler (Season 1-3, 5)
Robyn Slade (Season 1-2, The Tayo Movie: Mission Ace)
Carol Tyler (Season 3-4)
Aramis Merlin (Season 1-3)
Nolan Balzer (Season 1-2)
Aidan Williams (Season 3-5)
Kami Desilets (Season 1-2)
Eva Davis (Season 3-4)
Alexis Song (Season 5)
Tea Wagner (Season 1-3)
Kerri Salki (Season 1-2, 5)
Ginger Hendricks (Season 3-4)
Jolie L'Esperance (Season 1-2)
Sandra Hilton (Season 3-4)
Clarissa Hoffman (Season 5, The Tayo Movie: Mission Ace)
Narrated byHeather Madill
Opening themeTayo the Little Bus
Ending themeVroom, Vroom, Vroom!
Country of originSouth Korea
Original language(s)Korean
No. of seasons5
No. of episodes130
Running time11 minutes per episode
Production company(s)Iconix Entertainment, Educational Broadcasting System, Seoul Metropolitan Government
DistributorEducational Broadcasting System
Original networkEducational Broadcasting System
Original release23 August 2010 (2010-08-23) –
7 June 2019 (2019-06-07)
External links
Official website
Production website

Tayo the Little Bus (Korean꼬마버스 타요; RRKkoma-beoseu Tayo) is a South Korean computer-animated television series created by Iconix Entertainment, Educational Broadcasting System and the Metropolitan Government of Seoul.[1] The show was produced with the help of Seoul mayor Oh Se-hoon's administration.[2] It began airing in South Korea on EBS in 2010 and an English-dubbed version of the series began airing on Disney Junior (Asia) in 2012, with Disney Junior (Australia and New Zealand) following in 2013. In the United States and Canada, Hulu is the exclusive distributor of the series,[3] though the second and third seasons are on Netflix.

The series is about four buses in a city populated with anthropomorphic vehicles: Tayo (Bus 120), Rogi (Bus 1000), Lani (Bus 02) and Gani (Bus 1339).[4]

Each episode in the start, middle and end features a brief narration and it has five seasons. A spin-off series to Tayo, known as "Titipo", premiered between the main series’ fourth season and fifth season. Titipo focuses on the titular character named Titipo, a young passenger train the show is named after along with all his train friends. After the end of Titipo's first season, Tayo's fifth season premiered for English speaking audiences on October 22, 2018. Titipo the little train returns on Korean channel for the second season. Titipo's second season is set to premiere for English-speaking audiences in 2020.

The series is available in Korean, English, Spanish, Turkish, Indonesian, German and Russian on the production company's Tayo YouTube channel.[5]



Main characters[edit]

The series features seven main characters. Each of the four original characters (Tayo, Gani, Lani & Rogi) are based on the four actual colors and types of Seoul Buses.

  • Tayo (Bus 120, blue) is friendly, playful, and sometimes mischievous. He is the 3rd largest and 3rd oldest of the four buses. In the fourth-season episode, Who Is The Real Tayo?, it is revealed that he has a clone of his named Star Tayo, which was in one of his dreams. Tayo also appears as a minor character in the Titipo Titipo series in which he appears in the episodes: Going to Choo-Choo Town, Genie Makes a New Friend and Titipo and Tayo.
Voiced by
  • Jul Kohler (A Day in the Life of Tayo (2010) - Tayo's Christmas (2014), Thanks Gani (2018) - The Little Dinosaur Friend: Part 2 (2019)
  • Robyn Slade (A Day in the Life of Tayo (2010) - Hana's Special Day (2014)
  • Carol Tyler (Nice to Meet You Peanut (2016) - The Little Buses' Play (2016)
  • Teresa Gallagher (UK Dub)
  • Rogi (Bus 1000, green) he is conceited, outgoing, and also mischievous, but he is good-hearted. although the two often get into fights with each other. Funny and mischievous himself, Rogi also has an interest in detective work, as can be seen in episodes like Rogi the Detective! and Prank Call Madness.
Voiced by
  • Aramis Merlin (A Day in the Life of Tayo (2010) - Tayo's Christmas (2014)
  • Nolan Balzer (A Day in the Life of Tayo (2010) - Hana's Special Day (2014)
  • Aidan Williams (The New Friend, Heart (2014) - The Little Dinosaur Friend: Part 2 (2019)
  • Rob Rackstraw (UK Dub)
  • Lani (Bus 02, yellow) She is cute, cheerful, kind, sweet-natured however, she is timid, sensitive, and temperamental. Possessing little tolerance for arguments, she often acts as a mediator between Tayo and Rogi. She is the smallest and youngest of the four buses and is often considered the cute one of the group.
Voiced by
  • Kami Desilets (A Day in the Life of Tayo (2010) - Hana's Special Day (2014)
  • Eva Davis (Season 3-4)
  • Alexis Song (Rogi's Extraordinary Challenge (2018) - The Little Dinosaur Friend Part 2 (2019)
  • Emma Tate (UK Dub)
  • Gani (Bus 1339, red), who is hardworking, warm-hearted, and shy. while slightly timid and insecure, He is the largest and oldest of the four buses and often acts as the most mature one of the group.
Voiced by
  • Tea Wagner (Our New Friend, Gani (2010) - Tayo's Christmas (2014)
  • Kerri Salki (Let's Be Friends (2010) - Hana's Special Day (2014), Thanks Gani (2018) - The Little Dinosaur Friend Part 2 (2019)
  • Ginger Hendricks (Season 3-4)
  • Steven Kynman (UK Dub)
  • Peanut (Bus 03, white and turquoise) is an eco friendly city and tour bus who is good-natured and mellow. As he is shaped just like a peanut on the top, he gains this name. He can cause mischief sometimes but is a very kind bus. He was introduced in Season 4 along with the city tram Trammy.
  • Trammy (Tram 270, purple) is a city tram that was introduced in Season 4 along with Peanut.
  • Skii is the control centre and garage of Trammy, he is located on the mountain top near the reservoir and is accessible by the mountain tram and bus stop.

Supporting characters[edit]

  • Hana is a kind mechanic, who takes care of the little buses and works in the bus depot repair shop.
  • Citu (whose original name was Cito), a red double-decker tour bus, serves as a father-figure for Tayo, Rogi, Lani, Gani, Peanut and Trammy. He often chastises Tayo and Rogi for driving too rough in the garage. However, in the second-season episode, Cito's Secret, it is revealed that he had a boisterous past himself. An old mentor of his, Booba, appeared in this episode.
  • Heart is Hana's kind pink helper car. In the past, brown is her color in the third-season episode, The New Friend, Heart. Speed has a bit of a crush on her.

Frequent supporting characters[edit]

  • Nuri is a calm and professional female taxi who first met Tayo in the first-season episode, A Day in the Life of Tayo. She is very nice to Tayo and his friends, often visiting them at the bus depot.
  • Rookie is a police officer who sometimes goofs up with his job because he is new to it.
  • Pat is an experienced police car who is always serious when working. Rookie is Pat's police officer.
  • Speed (whose original name was Speedy) is a red car who likes to go really fast. Speed has a bit of a crush on Heart, but she is oblivious of it.
  • Shine is an overproud and vain yellow car who likes to show off, repeatedly leading to his own embarrassment. Shine is Speed's best friend.[citation needed][6]

Recurring supporting characters[edit]

  • Toto is a yellow tow truck who is really responsible with his job. Toto also made a one-off appearance in the Titipo Titipo series episode Titipo and Tayo.
  • Air is a red helicopter who is part of the rescue team.
  • Bong Bong is a very chipper light blue baby minibus, modelled on the classic VW minibus. First appearance in Tayo and Bong Bong.
  • Oli is a very chipper light green baby car. First appearance in the second-season episode, Tayo and Bongbong and named for the first time in the fourth-season episode, Who is cooler?.
  • Carry is a vehicle transporter akin to a mother or baby-sitter for Bongbong, Oli, and two other baby vehicles.
  • Champ is a turquoise countryside Land Rover, who got praised and follows Cooku's invitation.
  • Cooku (whose name was originally Coco) is a white and blue countryside bus.
  • Toni is a little truck who obeys traffic laws and likes to teach other cars about traffic laws. In the first-season episode, I Want New Tires, he was so busy teaching other cars about traffic laws that he got late delivering Tayo's new tires to the garage.
  • Alice is an ambulance who works in a hospital who likes to work with Frank when there is a fire. She is responsible for taking ill people to the hospital right on time.
  • Frank is a fire truck who works with Alice when there is a fire. He is very serious about his job and is responsible for fighting fires and saving people in danger.
  • Big is a big container truck who delivers goods to the airport to be sent overseas.
  • Billy is a bulldozer who works at the construction site with Poco, Chris, and Max. He is good at juggling.
  • Poco is an excavator who works at the construction site with Billy, Chris, and Max. He can rotate himself and spin his chassis around and around.
  • Chris is a cement truck who works at the construction site with Billy, Poco, and Max. He mixes up cement for new foundations.
  • Max is a dump truck who works at the construction site with Billy, Poco, and Chris. He can dump a huge pile of sand for a job.
  • Met is a subway train who knows about everything - even in the first-season episode, Rogi's Hiccups, he showed this by helping Rogi to stop hiccupping. If anyone feels down, Met will know what to do.
  • Nana is a bus living on the countryside with Ractor, Cooku, and Champ. She idolises Tayo. She first appeared in the second-season episode, Nana Visits the City.
  • Wondie is an old blue-and-beige bus who was scrapped a year before the first season.
  • Ractor (whose name was originally Larry) is a red tractor who lives in the countryside with Cooku, Champ, and Nana.
  • Rubby is a cleaning truck who likes to clean up garbage. He first appears in the second-season episode, A New Playground!.
  • Iracha is a pick-up truck. He's been making mistakes, now he knows that he is more careful, and runs on time, like Jay showed him how.
  • Bubba is an old bus. He used to keep scolding Citu for constant mischief, when he was a young bus.
  • Ms. Teach is a car with a white-and-purple livery. She always teaches the other vehicles in school.
  • Kinder is a Kindergarten school bus.
  • Duri is a cheery boy who lives where Jerry used to live. He is one of Tayo's best friends.
  • Jay is a rescuer is now a member of the team of the emergency center.
  • Joy (whose name was originally Joey) is a magician.
  • Andy is an artist.
  • Lolly is a friendly tour bus, but unlike other little buses, she's the only little bus, who doesn't have a number, and lives in a different city.
  • Tino is a young dinosaur. He is based on Tyrannosaurus.

Characters from Titipo Titipo[edit]

The series features four main characters.

  • Titipo is a little train who is best friends with Genie and Diesel, he may often make mistakes, but he still wants to become the best passenger train in the world. He is colored red and white with a light sky blue lining. He also appeared in Tayo the Little Bus in the episode Tayo and Titipo's Race.
  • Teo is a kind mechanic who takes care of little trains and works in the train yard repair shop.
  • Mr. Herb is a boss of the railroad yard. In Episode 21, it is revealed that he made a lot of mistakes when he was younger. He appeared in Titipo's sister series Tayo the Little Bus alongside Steam and Diesel in the episode Booba's Vacation.
  • Genie is a pink and white female passenger train who loves puppies, flowers, and all things pink. She also appeared in the episode: "Rogi and the Lucky Genie" in Titipo's sister series Tayo the Little Bus.
  • Diesel is a green freight train, modelled on a crocodile locomotive. He is known for showing off and telling fictional stories and as a result, often gets into trouble with Mr. Herb. He also appeared in Tayo the Little Bus alongside Mr Herb and Steam in the episode Booba's Vacation. He then met Tayo for the first time in the episode Titipo and Tayo.
  • Xingxing is a shy bullet train modeled on a KTX-Sancheon, who is known to be very fast.
  • Eric is a blue-colored, older Subway train who takes his job very seriously and as a result, has a hard time having fun with the other trains.
  • Loco is a friendly little yellow freight train resembling a VL80. He enjoys making new friends, and looks up to Diesel and wants to be as good as him someday. He is also scared of the dark.
  • Fix and Lift are two breakdown vehicles who love to sing and have a very hip personality, but are always ready in case of emergency. Fix is a rail-mounted crane locomotive, while Lift is a road-rail forklift.
  • Tony is a large freight train who met Titipo at the Train Production Plant and brought him back there from the harbor.
  • Craney is a red chatterbox crane who works at the harbor. He is known for lifting containers really fast.
  • Boom-Boom is a mischievous passenger train whom Titipo had to take over due to him derailing on a curve from overspeeding.
  • Manny and Berny are two twin freight trains who look very similar but have very different personalities. Manny is strong and tough, while Berny is shy and timid. They resemble to the diesel locomotives that work on the Canadian National Railway.
  • Setter is a bluish-green diesel shunter who is very organized with his job.
  • Steam is an old steam engine who Titipo saved from scrap. He is very old and loves to tell stories to the younger trains. He is based on an American 4-4-0. Appeared in Titipo's sister series Tayo the Little Bus alongside Mr Herb and Diesel in the episode Booba's Vacation.
  • Danny is a blue track inspection diesel who tries to calm Loco down during his night shift.
  • Jenny is a female diesel freight train modelled on an EMD F-Unit, who will make her first appearance in the second season of Titipo Titipo.
  • The Ghost Train is envisioned in Loco's imagination when the foggy weather obscured his view. He believed that Danny was abducted by him and brought to a town full of ghost trains. He has the model of a freight train like Tony.


At a Vietnamese seminar for addressing the struggles of the Vietnamese animation industry, Korean animators named Tayo the Little Bus as a series that has been "dominating" the Korean market. These animators also noted that the series is popular in China, Thailand, and Vietnam.[7]

Cultural impact[edit]

Route 9401 bus that received Gani wrap

In 2014, the Seoul Metropolitan Government commissioned buses designed as the characters Tayo, Gani, Rogi, and Lani, to run around the Gwanghwamun Square area of the city. This was done as part of an initiative to teach children how to use the bus. The initiative was a massive success, drawing crowds of over 40,000 in a single day. People from all across the country came to see the buses. Although the buses were originally set to run from March 26 until Public Transport Day at the end of April, their popularity led to an extension until Children's Day on May 5. The number of buses was also expanded from the original four to 100. In wake of this success, it was reported that the local governments of other cities in South Korea were considering adopting the campaign.[8] Officials for the city of Seoul initially opposed this on copyright grounds,[9] but they consented in April to letting other cities use the characters for non-commercial purposes.[2]

Jaeyeon Woo of The Wall Street Journal's blog Korea Real Time, speculated in an April 2014 article that the success of this initiative led both of Gyeonggi Province's gubernatorial candidates, Kim Sang-gon and Nam Kyung-pil, to adopt public transportation issues as a key part of their campaign platforms. Seoul-mayor Park Won-soon, who began the initiative, has been criticized by some of his political rivals, who feel that he took credit for the series, even though the series was begun by his predecessor's administration.[2]

On October 16, 2014, a South Korean group called the Teen Astronauts, launched a space balloon designed as the character Tayo from the Space Science Park in Korea's National Science Museum.[10]


  1. ^ "Tayo the Little Bus: About"
  2. ^ a b c Jaeyon Woo (11 April 2004). "All Aboard the Election Express". Korea Real Time. The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 3 November 2004.
  3. ^ "Tayo the Little Bus on Hulu"
  4. ^ Crump, William D. (2019). Happy Holidays—Animated! A Worldwide Encyclopedia of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year's Cartoons on Television and Film. McFarland & Co. p. 308. ISBN 9781476672939.
  5. ^ "Tayo YouTube channel"
  6. ^ "IMDB S3 E12 Information".
  7. ^ "Vietnam cartoons of good quality, yet still unappealing to viewers". tuoitrenews.vn. 13 October 2014. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  8. ^ Yoon Sojung (8 April 2014). "Have fun riding the bus with Tayo & friends". Korea.net. Government of South Korea. Retrieved 3 November 2014.
  9. ^ Bae Myeong-jae (7 April 2014). ""Tayo Bus" Craze in Seoul, "Can't People in Other Areas Ride Tayo?"". The Kyunghyang Shinmun. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  10. ^ M.H. Lee (18 October 2014). "Space Balloon and Tayo Mini Bus Travel to Space — for Short Time". The Korea Bizwire. Retrieved 4 November 2014.

External links[edit]