The Moomins (TV series)
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|Written by||Maria Kossakowska|
|Music by||Andrzej Rokicki|
|Country of origin||Polish People's Republic, Austria, Germany|
|No. of episodes||100|
|Original release||1977 –|
The Moomins (Polish: Opowiadania Muminków, German: Die Mumins) is a stop motion animated children's television series based on the Tove Jansson's Moomin series of books which was produced by Se-ma-for and Jupiter Film between 1977 and 1982 for Polish, Austrian and German television. The series was later sold to other countries including the UK. The British version was adapted by Anne Wood at FilmFair and broadcast in the UK. Series 1 was first shown on Monday 24 January 1983 at 4:15 pm and series 2 on Monday 7 January 1985 at 4.15pm on Children's ITV, and series 2 was repeated in 1986. The series was last repeated in its entirety in 1988. It was narrated by British actor Richard Murdoch.
This series was the third series to be made based on the Moomin books. Two more were subsequently made. It is one of the two best-known Moomin series (along with the Japanese-made anime version Moomin (1990)). The 1977–1982 stop-motion version has been criticised for being scary in places and rather dark in tone for the young audience at which it was aimed. It is, in contrast to the 1990s series, widely believed to be the most faithful TV adaptation of Tove Jansson's stories, and much closer to her vision. Tove herself had a great deal of involvement during the series' production and was very happy with it (as revealed in an interview with Anne Wood in Simon Sheridan's 2007 book The A to Z of Classic Children's Television). The scripts for each episode were translated from Polish into Swedish and sent to Tove and Lars Jansson, who, if they felt that anything needed to be changed, corrected the script, expanding or rewriting it; afterwards, the scripts were sent back and only then did production of the particular episode begin.
The opening titles featured a bouncy theme tune consisting of flutes and synthesizers composed by Graeme Miller and Steve Shill, and a popular still of Moomintroll holding a hat.
In 2010, an HD version of the series was released. It was later followed by a new US-produced English dub in 2017.
The UK adaptation consisted of 100 five-minute episodes.
Series 1 consisting of 50 episodes was first broadcast Mondays to Fridays at 4:15 pm, 24 January to 1 April 1983 on Children's ITV. Series 2 consisting of another 50 episodes first aired Monday to Fridays at 4:15 pm, 7 January to 15 March 1985 on Children's ITV.
|UK Broadcast Date||Title|
|26.01.1983||King of California|
|27.01.1983||The Ant Lion|
|28.01.1983||Canaries & Raspberry Juice|
|31.01.1983||The Indoor Jungle|
|01.02.1983||Thingumy and Bob|
|02.02.1983||The Trial of the Groke|
|07.02.1983||The Great Search|
|09.02.1983||Hobgoblin Arrives At the Party|
|14.02.1983||Attack of the Hattifatteners|
|17.02.1983||Return to Moominvalley|
|24.02.1983||Little My Goes Skating|
|25.02.1983||Moomintroll and Little My|
|28.02.1983||The Lady of the Cold|
|04.03.1983||Sorry-oo and the Wolves|
|07.03.1983||The Winter Bonfire|
|08.03.1983||Return of the Sun|
|09.03.1983||The Great Thaw|
|14.03.1983||Moomintroll & the Dragon|
|18.03.1983||Hodgkins & the Sailor|
|21.03.1983||Edward the Booble|
|22.03.1983||Moomintroll to the Rescue|
|29.03.1983||The Muddler's Marriage|
|UK Broadcast Date||Title|
|07.01.1985||The Haunted Theatre|
|09.01.1985||Emma the Theatre Rat|
|10.01.1985||A Night in the Trees|
|14.01.1985||The Parkkeeper's Surprise|
|17.01.1985||The Naughty Woodies|
|22.01.1985||Tea with the Hemulen's Niece|
|30.01.1985||The Cocktail Party|
|08.02.1985||The Hemulen Aunt|
|13.02.1985||The Vampire Escapes|
|14.02.1985||The Friendly Vampire|
|15.02.1985||The Nice Bat|
|20.02.1985||The Terrible Island Storm|
|21.02.1985||The Disappearing Moomins|
|22.02.1985||The Little Martian|
|25.02.1985||The Martian Goes Home|
|27.02.1985||The Muskrat's Prediction|
|01.03.1985||The Underground Waterfall|
|04.03.1985||The Giant Eagle|
|07.03.1985||Moomintroll to the Rescue|
|08.03.1985||The Village Shop|
|12.03.1985||The Dead Sea|
The order above is the correct broadcast order, for when the episodes were first shown on UK television in 1983 (taken from the original script list). The episode order in the recent DVD boxset was changed, so that the English episodes were intended to match the German broadcast order (but they were in fact different). In the UK, the series ended with the Comet in Moominland story. Series 1 was shown in 1983 and series 2 in 1985. Series 2 was repeated in 1986. The series was also repeated in its entirety in 1988. (Confirmed by the sleeve notes from Finders Keepers Moomin soundtrack release 2016).
Impact and critical reaction
Single DVD releases are also available, which contain English and German episodes. The German episodes have English subtitles and the English episodes have German subtitles.
- Moomin and Midsummer Madness was released in 2008, based on a compilation of Episodes 51-65.
- Moomins and the Comet Chase was released in 2010, based on a compilation of Episodes 88-100.
- Moomins and the Winter Wonderland was released in 2017, based on a compilation of Episodes 23-33.
- Simon Sheridan The A to Z of Classic Children's Television (Reynolds & Hearn books, 2004, reprinted 2007) ISBN 1-903111-27-7. Contains a long chapter on the making of the TV series, a rare photo of Tove Jansson and an interview with UK series producer Anne Wood.
- Thomas, Liz. "New kid on the box - ITV's new children's channel CiTV | Features". The Stage. Retrieved 2015-08-29.
- "Children's TV: CITV - Winning custody of the children. | News | Broadcast". Broadcastnow.co.uk. 2003-02-03. Retrieved 2015-08-29.
- Phil De Semlyen; Ali Plumb; Helen O'hara; James Dyer (2015-10-09). "Classic Kids' TV Shows That Still Rock Our World, Feature | Movies - Empire". Empireonline.com. Retrieved 2016-09-27.
- "The top 50 children's TV shows". The Times. Archived from the original on 30 August 2008. Retrieved 2012-01-28.CS1 maint: Unfit url (link)
- "Tales from Moominvalley Northern Lights Film Festival". Northern Lights Film Festival. Retrieved 2012-01-28.
- "The Moomins [DVD box set]: Amazon.co.uk: Richard Murdoch, The Moomins: Film & TV". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-10-29.