Well, it's official. Wallace and Gromit's latest
outing proved to be
the most-watched tv show of the festive season.
14.4m viewers tuned
in to the Christmas Day premiere of their new
film "A Matter of Loaf
and Death", on BBC1. That topped viewing figures
for the likes of
"Eastenders", "Coronation St"
and - yes - even "Doctor Who".
It's another gem of a film from Nick Park and
the Aardman team.
There was some beautiful suspense to savour - Gromit
on the chandelier
above Piella's bed, the toppling dummies, etc.
The detail... the precision
of the characters... the little nods and winks
for movie fans... oh... what
bliss... And like the duo's home baked bread, the film has
risen in this
viewer's esteem with repeated viewings on the BBC's iPlayer
- what a handy
widget that is. But if you prefer, the film actually gets another
full-blown terrestrial airing at 7.00pm, on New
Year's Day before it's
eventual release on
at the end of March.
Hmm. I wonder how many awards it will garner inbetween?
Yahoo. Christmas is almost upon us. And this year
it's bringing us
the most cracking one imaginable, as Nick Park,
and Wallace & Gromit take over the BBC schedules.
Oh yes, our favourite pair are unmissable this
year. They're starring
in all the main channel idents, wrapped up in
knitwear and frollicking in
the festive snow. Not the first time they've done that,
Anyways, the reason behind all this stop-motion
fun is two-fold.
of the Were-Rabbit gets its terrestrial premiere on BBC1
at 4.30pm on Christmas Day. But better still. Oh, much,
better still, we can all setttle down round the tv
at 8.30pm on the
Big Day to watch the premiere of Wallace & Gromit's
extravaganza, "A Matter of Loaf and Death".
And if that's not a
ratings-winner for the Beeb, well, The Hound will eat
his own shorts.
Nick Park has talked quite candidly about his toon
stars inside the
festive edition of "The Radio Times",
and in particular, he's revealed this
wonderous nugget about his and Aardman's relationship
Hollywood Honchos at DreamWorks, during the making
"We'd get notes from the studio saying, 'Wouldn't
better if Wallace and Gromit had a more
like a pick-up truck?' "
Hoo-boy. Thank goodness they escaped. And gawd bless
and the entire Aardman team for bringing us the
biggest and bestest
Christmas pressie we could ever have wished for!...
Last post (09.12.08)
Ssh. Close your eyes. Listen closely. Can you hear?
Today the inhabitants of a dozen tiny worlds have turned
and ears to the heavens.. keening.. listening
A lonely Music Boat. And in its wake, The Music
of the Spheres
playing in lament for Oliver Postgate, who has
died this week.
DFC Xmas (04.12.08)
Well, The Hound's just received his first industry
Christmas card of
the season. And it's a doozy. It's from the offices
of that top comic The
DFC, and it features the stars of James Turner's Super
Animal Adventure Squad all dressed up for some
action. Looks good, don't it?
But wait. This isn't just a card. Oh no.
You see, those sneaky DFC'ers
have transformed their mailshot into a Christmas
freebie, with the
recipient (er, that's me) able to claim a free
copy of "The DFC".
Now that's a Christmas card and a half, and it's
got this here
Hound beaming ear to ear...
Oh. But wait. Again.
It turns out, there's even more to The DFC this
Christmas. And this
time, they've got something that's available to
everyone. You see,
they've taken a leaf out of the Random
House Christmas book, and
they've launched a special online
DFC advent calendar with a
daily prize up for grabs. That's one a day in
the run up to Christmas.
And they've already handed out some fabulous freebies
DFC Goodie Bags, posters, and - yes! - original comic
you do is search their festive page until you
find the correct
daily present. Then you go into the big prize
So what are you waiting for? - Get searching
Well, there was in fact only one winner. Or should that
double winner, because Lauren Child's child stars snapped
up both coveted animation trophies:
CHARLIE AND LOLA AUTUMN SPECIAL
Claudia Lloyd, Kitty Taylor (Tiger
CHARLIE AND LOLA
Claudia Lloyd, Kitty Taylor (Tiger
"Charlie and Lola" is a vivacious
and addictive little show, gorgeous
to look at and bubbling over with effervescent
fun and frolics. The series
has now collected four gongs (it won two
last year). And it deserves
As for the rest of the nominees of note,
all fell at the final furlong.
But - hey - a nomination is still no bad thing,
is it not?
Well, maybe it's okay for Tony Collingwood.
He's already got
six smiling BAFTAs on his mantlepiece. But
be smarting because Shaun the Sheep has
lost out on that
Best Animation award for two years in succession
Alongside the various obituaries, news of Oliver
passing has brought a whole of Childrens
out of the closet. And it's been fascinating to hear
and to read. What's
been most interesting is hearing the oft-repeated notion
that we somehow
don't make animated series like we used to, we don't
or wonder, we don't create little worlds and charactes
who jump into
existence for no other reason that to simply live
and breathe and
to open our eyes to a different kind of universe.
Oh, no. We don't do
that anymore. But The Hound thinks the folks who
say these things
just haven't been looking hard enough...