BBC/Roadshow Entertainment .
R4 . COLOR . 66 mins .
G . PAL
Righty-O, no one is reading this review, so letís make something up. How about we give the ol' Magic Spining Wheel of Review Ideas a spin and see what comes up? ...badabadabadaBING! And it's another fake interview!
Okay, we've got a special treat for you today, so sit down, cross your legs and stop fidgeting. Our special guest for a brief Q&A is none other than Noddy himself!
DVDnet: Noddy, thanks for joining us here today.
Noddy: My pleasure Vince, I'm very happy to be here! Wow, it's a fantastic office you have! What's that strange looking naked fellow in corner doing with the potplant?
DVDnet: Oh, that's just Marty. I told him to put it someplace where the sun don't shine. Never mind that now, weíre here to discuss your DVD Noddy & the New Taxi. But it's not the typical animation we'd expect from you, you've made the jump to a 3D rendered CGI animation, a la Toy Story. That must be exciting for you?
"Hi little girl, I'm an AFL player. Wanna come home and see my etchings?"
Noddy: Yes, it really really is! It's so very exciting! I'm just so happy... oh screw it... it's a pain in the arse. Do you know how bloody hard it is to do that computer generated bollocks? I mean, for example, it's not really Big Ears I'm acting with on screen. You see, I have to stand there while some low-level flunky holds a tennis ball where Big Ears is supposed to be, and I say my lines and then they add him in later. He's fake! He's completely bloody fake! How am I'm supposed to act with a feckin' tennis ball?
DVDnet: This is all the rage right now, though isn't it? I mean, it's the future of moviemaking, and obviously it's the future of children's entertainment as well. At least, George Lucas and Pixar would have us believe that.
Noddy: Yeah, right! George feckin' Lucas! That arse! He directed one of the episodes on this DVD, you know? Wanted to include a giant CGI emu on rollerblades, because he felt that the story needed something to make the kids excited. Marketing and licensing deals he said is what it was all about. Said that I'd be Noddy Nobody until a humongous burger chain sold Noddy poseable action figures with every Kids' Meals Deal. I told him he's a bloody great twat and that it wasn't the force clouding his mind, it was his whopping big ego.
DVDnet: But surely you can see that with the likes of Pixar making a squillion bucks every time they release another animated adventure, the future spells out the death of traditional animation? CGI must be quicker and cheaper as well?
Noddy: Oh yeah, you think so? All the old values are going down the shitter I tell you. Maybe I'll just move to Japan and start making those erotic ninja horror Noddy cartoons filled with ultra-violence and demons with bloody great big hard-ons. That crap sells, you know. At least I'll be acting against real people, not bloody green screens and bits of foam on a stick.
DVDnet: The idea of a erotic ninja horror cartoon would surely alienate your main market, the pre-school kids, though. Can you survive if you lost that childish appeal?
Noddy: Have you ever watched a Noddy episode? Do you think it's childish harmless educational fun? Feck off! I mean, I'm called NODDY for fecks sake! Do you know why Iím called Noddy? I even demonstrate it at the start of the DVD! And what about calling a character Big Ears! Why not just teach our kids it's okay to call people 'Fat Arse', and 'Hook Nose' while we're at it? And what the feck is with Big Ears always saying "You funny little Noddy!"? I swear, the way he looks at me, I better watch my arse. And another thing, I'm supposed to be like eight years old, but I drive a car, fly an airplane, live by myself and hang out with an old geezer who wears striped lycra pants! I mean, what the feck's up with that?! Is that the sort of thing you want your kids exposed to?
DVDnet: Well my two year old finds you amusing in small doses. Admittedly he's much more interested in watching Finding Nemo, Toy Story and Roger Waters Live in the Flesh though. Also, he thinks you're a bit of a whining self-centred brat as well.
Noddy: Your two year old thinks that does he? Pretty clever two year old, wouldn't you say?
DVDnet: Okay, it's really me who thinks you're a bit of a brat, actually. And let's face it, if I'm going to let my kid watch something on telly, I hardly want it to be something which teaches him to be an irresponsible little shit who can get away with murder then have it all forgiven with a friendly pat on the head and a cabbage. Thatís not the sort of message I want him to learn..
Noddy: ...but what about the lessons about tolerance and forgiveness, and understanding and friendship and...
DVDnet: ...bollocks, all of it bollocks, and you know it. You hardly touch on theses things, and frankly when you do itís pretty poorly implemented anyway..
Noddy: You bastard! Iím gonna...
DVDnet: I think youíve made an uneasy transition to this new-fangled technology, and basically the story has suffered for it. Face it, youíve had your time in the sun, Noddy.
Noddy: Youíre DEAD! YOU HEAR ME?!
DVDnet: Piss off, you silly little Noddy.
Noddy: ...A DEAD MAN!
This imaginary interview is finished.
A kids' show has to capture their attention and stop them from going off to play with trucks and dolls and broken glass, so it needs to be bright, colourful, loud and annoying to both adult eyes and ears. Noddy achieves this without fail. Your kids will be happier than me the time I drank a bottle of Domain Chandon í98 Brut Rosť by myself while watching Lord of the Rings.
"I said GET IN THE BOX! To the bottom of the harbour you go, you little sh.."
A plethora of garish and bright colours will assault your eyes and your senses, making you wish you were blind or locked in a small, dark box. The full screen 4:3 picture pushes the pixels around fairly cleanly, but the look of the objects on screen doesnít exactly tax the system because texture detail is very low to non-existent for most of the time. This is all about bright objects moving around on screen to hypnotise the kids, so I guess it achieves that end fairly well. Plonk on Nemo afterwards to compare and youíll probably wish Noddy remained a traditional animation instead, which has a charm of its own.
The single stereo track is simple, clear and bright, so that means it gets everything right. The theme will stick in your mind for weeks, the kids will hear every stupid thing Noddy and Big Arse say, and youíll start drinking again.
When the six episodes (around 11 minutes each) finish, you can entertain the sprogs with a Sing-Along, which is the long version of the theme song with lyrics on screen. Lemme tell you straight, it made me want to punch the television screen. The two games are of the multiple choice type, and I came really close to punching the screen again. Frankly, this DVD is going to the back of the cupboard and Iíll stick to my kid watching Play School and reading books.