Bob the Builder

From Academic Kids

Bob the Builder is a stop-motion animated children's TV programme concerning the adventures of a British construction contractor and his friends.

The programme features the eponymous Bob (voiced by actor Neil Morrissey in the English original), his colleague Wendy, various neighbours and friends, and their gang of anthropomorphised work-vehicles and equipment. In each episode they help with renovations, construction, and repairs, and with other projects as needed. The show emphasizes conflict resolution, co-operation, socialization, and various learning skills.

Bob's catchphrase is "Can we fix it? Yes, we can!". This phrase is also the title of the show's theme song; the song itself became a christmas number one single in 2000 and appeared 72nd in the all-time UK best-sellers list issued in 2002. A second single by Bob, "Mambo No.5", with lyrics adapted from Lou Bega's 1999 hit version, also reached number one a year later.

There is also a movie, "A Christmas to Remember", starring Elton John, Alison Steadman and Noddy Holder.

Bob and his twin brother Tom are also radio hams, see amateur radio.

An ongoing interest for adults who may inadvertently watch the series is the love interest between Bob and his friend and colleague, Wendy. A certain degree of tension is almost always palpable, and in one particular episode, "Buffalo Bob", Wendy has to act as a last minute stand-in for Bob's usual line dancing partner, Mavis, who has injured herself a few days prior to a competition. Naturally, Bob and Wendy go on to win said competition. Having returned to the yard to pass on the good news to the construction vehicles, Bob walks Wendy home through the winding moonlit streets. Arriving at their destination, they pause a moment on the doorstep before Bob mumbles "I'd better be going home, then." Another beat passes, and they part. Wendy rushes upstairs and wistfully watches Bob walk away from her house. After showing his trophy to his friends, Bob turns and blows her a kiss.

The show is produced in the UK by Hit Entertainment, and draws heavily on claymation techniques such as those pioneered by Art Clokey and more recently on the successful works of Aardman Animations, (although the show is not claymation but instead the characters are made from silicone for the skin with a metal armatured skeleton inside). It is shown in more than thirty countries, and versions are available in English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, and Dutch, among other languages. It is shown on BBC television in the UK, and on Nickelodeon in the US and Canada. The Nickelodeon version uses the actual BBC episodes, but dubs the voices in North American accents and slang (for example, the word "soccer" is used for the crew's football game to avoid confusion with the very different "football" sport that is popular in the U.S.).

Characters

  • Bob the Builder - Bricoleur extraordinaire.
  • Wendy - Bob's business associate.
  • Farmer Pickles
  • Scoop - Yellow backhoe
  • Muck - Red bulldozer
  • Dizzy - Orange cement mixer
  • Rolly - Green steamroller
  • Lofty - Blue crane
  • Spud - Mischevious scarecrow (belongs to Farmer Pickles)
  • Travis - Tractor (belongs to Farmer Pickles)
  • Pilchard - Bob's cat
  • Bird - A bird

All the characters are machines, adult humans or animals except for Spud the scarecrow. Spud serves as the stand in for a naive child. It is spud who must learn to be patient, to not eat all of the food etc.

See also

External links

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