Animation: For Better or For Worse

Growing up in the 1990’s and 2000’s meant that we had some great children’s shows. Cheez TV for one, but that is not what is will be about. I am talking about Bananas in Pyjamas and Bob the Builder.

I loved these shows growing up. The Bananas knocking heads and the talking trucks. But as I grew older, I started to drift away from the shows. And recently, and in the past couple of years, I’ve noticed that these two shows have changed dramatically since my childhood.

Bananas in Pyjamas originally ran from 1992 to 2001 as a live action show with people in costumes. And it centred on B1 and B2, who where the two Bananas; their bear friends: Amy, Lulu and Morgan; and Rat in a Hat.


Are you think what I’m thinking, B1?

– B2

I think I am, B2.

– B1

But when they decided to do a reboot of the classic show in 2011, the producers thought it would be better to make the show animated. This meant for them it was only voice actors and the main production would be through computer generated images.

This was ultimately the downfall of the reboot as we were given a product that was in no way similar to the original.  There were too many characters on the show and the computer effects meant that it no longer gave the children the ability to use their imagination.

The other childhood television show that surprised me was Bob the Builder. This ran from 1998 to 2012, and was a done through stop motion animation and voice overs. Stop motion animation is made by using figurines and clay figures and taking individual photos of each physical movement that takes place. Wallace & Gromit (2005), Shaun the Sheep and Chicken Run (2000) are also stop motion animation.

Bob the Builder follows Bob as he leads Scoop, Muck and Dizzy, and Rolly too. Lofty and Wendy join the crew. Along with recurring characters Pilchard and Bird, Travis and Spud.


Yes we can!

– Everyone

I used to watch this show a lot, and still try to catch it if I’m flicking through the channels. But in 2015 it was rebooted with computer generated animation and a larger cast as well. And it just looks odd. I don’t know that name of any of the new characters and its hard watch.

Where did my childhood favourites go? I feel like the new generation are losing out on some of the best children’s programming out there.


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