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1001 Stories Collection

Noggin the Nog

1001 Noggin The Nog
Added on 14th August 2020

Created by Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin
First shown 1959, BBC
Producer Smallfilms Ltd

Action and adventure Funny
1001

The adventures of Noggin the Nog, King of the Northmen, a classic of early children's animation.

Story

Noggin the Nog is a series of short animations charting the life of Noggin the Nog, King of the Northmen. This Viking-like tribe lead a simple life enlived with the occasional dragon or fantastical invention. Noggin has to contend with the evil plans of his wicked uncle Nogbad the Bad who is determined to steal the throne but Noggin is helped by his trusty friend Thor Nogson and the wise raven, Graculus.

Why we chose it

Noggin the Nog is considered a classic of early children's television.

Where it came from

Noggin the Nog was created by Smallfilms, a collaboration between writer and animator Oliver Postgate and artist and puppet-maker Peter Firmin. It followed on from Ivor the Engine which was Postgate and Firmin's first stop motion animation series for children's TV. The stories about Noggin the Nog are set in a Viking-like world but with elements of fantasy such as dragons and the talking bird Graculus. The drawings are inspired by the Lewis Chessmen in the British Museum (dated to the 12th century) and the stories are told using simple stop motion animation of the illustrations.

It first aired in 1959 in black and white and continued until 1965. A total of 21 episodes were made in black and white and a further six episodes in colour.

Where it went next

Twelve books featuring stories based on Noggin the Nog, written by Oliver Postgate and illustrated by Peter Firmin, were published in the 1960s and 1970s. The show returned briefly to the small screen in 1982 with a new two-part story and a colour version of the earlier saga, Noggin and the Ice Dragon. Smallfilms went on to make other classics of children's TV including Pogles Wood, Bagpuss and The Clangers.

Associated stories

Ancient Norse sagas provided the inspiration for the setting of Noggin the Nog. Such sagas would have been told as oral stories, with a strong focus on family feuds and daring deeds and far flung travels. The majority of the sagas that have survived are Icelandic in origin and have been preserved in Medieval manuscripts.

Added on 14th August 2020

Created by Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin
First shown 1959, BBC
Producer Smallfilms Ltd

Action and adventure Funny
1001