Cartoon & Animation Work History

We are changing the format of our children’s cartoon stories so that they can be marked with a mixed audience setting on social networks. Introducing Granny Annie. Better to have one really great digital puppet than dozens of basic ones. With around 100 individual characters (see character wiki) we feel Granny Annie makes the perfect presenter.

New Cartoons – Introducing Granny Annie

Pre-release Granny Annie Cartoons. Unlisted on YouTube these cartoons can only be found and shared from here.

Video: A Is For Andre. Granny Annie Story Cartoon

Video: B Is For Boris. A Granny Annie Cartoon

C Is For Cameron. A Granny Annie Cartoon

Granny Annie Screen Test

New cartoon format ‘Granny Annie’ animation.  Concept character design, it was good to see what Granny Annie looked like and to see if author Jo Kemp would agree to lend her, her voice.

Purple rinse –  Grannie Annie’s hair in this video was actually cropped directly from a photo of Dame Edna Everage.

We have since completed Granny Annie’s design and she will be presenting the stories from ‘Granny Annies Ultimate Alphabet Book’ over the next couple of months.

Subscribe and ding the bell for notifications on release.

Read Aloud Book, Percy The Peeping Pot Plant In hair rollers

Grannie Annie’s Ultimate Alphabet Book

Granny Annie’s ‘Ultimate Alphabet Book’ is a different approach to alphabet books insofar as it’s written to expand children’s vocabulary and their imagination. Every letter of the alphabet is catered for with characters that are engaging and lasting; in situations that young people can relate to in their everyday lives.

Read Aloud Book, Percy The Peeping Pot Plant In hair rollers
Kids cartoon, Raj The Rambling Radiator - BoodleBobs Cartoon's for 4yrs+

Cartoon’s The Original BoodleBobs

On a 10-year-old MAC, learning how to animate cartoons with character animator was a slow process.

Listed in the order they were made with a very basic Raj cartoon being the very first.

Raj The Rambling Radiator Cartoon
“Come and sit on my head while I find you some honey for your cold,” said Raj kindly. 

Dorothy The Dancing Doughnut Cartoon
Dorothy is sweet and lovely all the way through.. even though she does have a hole in her middle!

Eva The Energetic Egg Timer Cartoon
“Because timing eggs only takes minutes, Eva had a lot of time on her hands.

Boris The Brainy Book Cartoon
Boris knew the name of everything, the size of everything, where it was from – where it was going to – and how to say it in Latin.

Zac The Zealous Zucchini Cartoon
Cameron had seen better days; better days than the days he now spent in the box room. It was like a box and full of boxes.

Queenie The Quivering Quilt Cartoon
A quilt should be fat and warm and snugly but Queenie wasn’t. She was cold and thin and quivery.

Nigel The Niggly Napkin Cartoon
And it always had to be ‘just so’ for Nigel. Perfectly straight lines and sharp creases, which made him irritatingly… Niggly.

Zac The Zealous Zucchini Cartoon
What is a ZOO-KHEE-NEE? Well… it’s a sort of squash – a courgette – that has a great big floppy flower growing out of its head.

Jump Song Cartoon
Jump song was our first music cartoon. Roger who was only a secondary character in the books, went on to make more songs.

Kids cartoon, Raj The Rambling Radiator - BoodleBobs Cartoon's for 4yrs+

Perfect Love Is Me – Comedy Cartoon Love Song

Made for valentines day Perfect Love is Me is a comedy love song about NPD.

Perfect Love Is Me marked an upgrade in our hardware and we were able to do a better job with the animation. As an experiment into backlinks, Luke submitted a version of Perfect Love Is Me to various film festivals and was surprised when the work received award laurels.

Roger the Rolling Pin (an existing digital puppet) was selected to be the voice/face of BoodleBobs music. We wanted to try producing a different type of content to kick start our flagging YouTube channel views. Ultimately, after learning that record labels were spending on average $50,000 a week in promoting music artists on YouTube (Ads) and that these paid promotions were being counted as views, the decision was made to bench the project (stopping production on the Spanish and Hindi versions of the PLIM cartoon) and leave the video on YouTube to see if the content is served.

In the 18 months since it was published this video has only been seen a 1000 times, lending to the conclusion that we had to build and improve our own website and lower our expectation of YouTube serving future content. We would like to make more music in the future.

Music Downloads

‘Perfect Love Is Me’ – Available here free, for a limited time only.

Roger makes our music

Roger often says that if you were to look in a dictionary for ‘Legend’, it says ‘Roger!’

With his feelings of grandiosity and his desire for success and power, he has agreed to share his music here for a limited time only. Download Perfect Love Is Me

Jo Kemp Author

jo Kemp Hourglass author publicity shot

Author: Jo Kemp

Jo Kemp is a British author who as well as providing the voice for Granny Annie, wrote the original scripts for ‘Chorlton and the Wheelies’ and ‘Jamie and the Magic Torch’.

She went on to produce over 100 episodes of ‘The Raggy Dolls’ for Yorkshire TV through her own film production company.

Boodle Books first appeared in the 1980s and were taken up by Thurman Publishing of ‘Mr Men’ fame who published six titles.

Boodle Books became BoodleBobs and 2021 saw the release of Granny Annies Ultimate Alphabet Book containing the completed 26 stories.

Released on-line with cartoons, audiobooks and print media Jo narrates the stories providing the voice for Grannie Annie.

Her latest work ‘The Hourglass’ is the first in a series of fantasy books.

Jamie and the magic torch published by Corgi Carousel Books 1978

Jamie And The Magic Torch

Original storylines: Jo Kemp

BoodleBobs story writer and the voice of Granny Annie (Jo Kemp) whist working at Cosgrove Hall Films in the late 1970’s wrote the original scripts for cult classic children’s TV series ‘Jamie And The Magic Torch.

The Jamie and The Magic Torch TV series was based around the young boy of the title and his torch. When shone on the floor, the torch opened up a hole into a dimension called Cuckoo Land.

The beginning of each episode had Jamie’s mother tucking him into bed at night and saying, “Sleep well, Jamie.” Then from under his bed, his pet ‘Old English Sheep Dog’ Wordsworth would appear holding the torch in his mouth. When shined on to the floor, it opened up a helter-skelter portal into Cuckoo Land.

Chorlton and The Wheelies - Original Storylines Jo Kemp - BoodleBobs Granny Annie

Chorlton And The Wheelies

Original storylines: Jo Kemp

The series takes place in “Wheelie World”, which is inhabited principally by the “wheelies”, a race of anthropomorphic creatures who locomote by means of wheels. They have three wheels each: two large ones at the front (resembling feet), and a smaller centred one at the back (resembling a tail). The wheels are replaceable, and suitable wheels grow on vegetation found in Wheelie World.

The wheelie society is in conflict with Fenella the Kettle Witch, who speaks in a very strong Welsh accent and lives in Wheelie World but separately from the wheelies, in Spout Hall, an oversized kettle. Fenella hates happiness and uses her powers primarily to make the wheelies unhappy.

She has magical capabilities, including a form of teleportation which is her main mode of transport, and enchanted assistants including a magic book (called ‘Claptrap Von Spilldebeans’) and O’Reilly the Telescope, which advise her on magic spells.

Minions include spikers (sinister-looking objects like conker shells with baleful eyes, which roll everywhere) and toadies (pointed toadstools with similar eyes, which travel by bobbing through the ground as though it were water and who speak with a Chinese accent).

The wheelies have adopted into their society a “happiness dragon”, Chorlton, who appears in Wheelie World at the very beginning of the series, hatching out of an egg.

Chorlton is perpetually good-natured and perpetually clueless. For example, he fails to perceive Fenella as a villain, and affectionately refers to her as a “little old lady”.

Nevertheless, his presence negates the unhappiness magic, so the wheelies treat him as a hero. Despite being “Made in Chorlton-cum-Hardy” (Greater Manchester) he has a strong Yorkshire accent, although this is probably due to the voice talents of Joe Lynch more than any planning by Cosgrove Hall.

Plots are extremely simple, mainly revolve around Fenella’s schemes to make the wheelies unhappy and Chorlton’s accidental rectification of everything that goes wrong. Around these events, the characters’ simple and exaggerated personalities are on show.

The idea of ‘wheelies’ came about after the difficulties of moving many different characters using stop-frame animation. Characters on wheels were easier to manipulate than those with legs that needed fractionally moving many times for each second of filming. Similarly, choosing teleportation as Fenella’s principal means of transportation means that usually, Chorlton is the only character whose walking needs to be animated.

The show was sold to numerous countries around the (non-Wheelie) world. However, Israel declined to purchase it as a graphic artist mistakenly drew a Star of David instead of a Pentagram on the front of the German-accented spellbook, causing accusations of antisemitism against the programme’s creators.

Chorlton & The Wheelies Characters characters include, amongst others:

  • Chorlton the Happiness Dragon – where he goes happiness follows.
  • Fenella Fellorick the Kettle Witch – who does not like anyone to enjoy themselves.
  • Zoomer – a wheelie boy, notable for his speed of locomotion.
  • Jenny – a wheelie girl with blonde hair who fancies Chorlton.
  • King Otto and Queen Doris – The monarchy of Wheelieworld.
  • The Minister of wheel estate – the political wheelie, who bears a striking resemblance to Harold Wilson, who had recently been Prime Minister of the UK. His real name is revealed to be Arthur in season 3.
  • Claptrap von Spilldebeans – A German spellbook who often speaks in rhyme and comes up with Fenella’s schemes.
  • O’Reilly the one-eyed telescope – An Irish telescope that Fenella stole from the end of Dún Laoghaire East Pier.
  • Clifford – Fenella’s giant son & Queenie’s giant nephew, who is so tall the only part of him that ever is in shot is his leg.
  • Pablo Perdito – A world-famous Latin American dancing duck.
  • Floyd – The only toady to have pink spots rather than green (first called by name in the series two episode “Toady Trouble” – a possible hidden reference to the band Pink Floyd).
  • Queenie Fellorick the Pink Suit – Fenella’s sister, but who does not like anyone to enjoy themselves.

Chorlton And The Wheelies – Chorlton Gets His Wheels

Djibouti Blue – Chorlton and the Wheelies

Raggy Dolls Produced By Jo Kemp

The Raggy Dolls

TV Series producer: Jo Kemp

Jo Kemp ran the independent production company in Manchester (Orchid Productions) that produced over 100 episodes of the TV series. At the time of making Jo had an employee roster of 50 staff making animation & live-action (TV commercials and TV series).

Raggy Dolls History – The series was produced for Yorkshire Television from 3 April 1986 to 20 December 1994. It was created by Melvyn Jacobson, with scripts, narration and music by Neil Innes. Yorkshire Television produced the first two series of The Raggy Dolls before awarding the commission to Orchid Productions Limited (A business owned by Jo Kemp) in 1987.

This was the first programme Yorkshire Television commissioned from an independent production company, and Orchid Productions went on to produce over 100 more episodes of the series. The initial animator for Yorkshire TV was Roy Evans, and consequently, after the move to Orchid Productions Mark Mason took over the role, animating and storyboarding 26 episodes, and storyboarding and directing other animators on a further 26 episodes before moving on to work on other children’s shows and being replaced by Peter Hale from the 7th series onwards. (Luke note – Peter Hale lived with me for a while making Raggy Dolls and he introduced me to the world of Dungeons and Dragons).

  • Sad Sack – A sample of a design that was deemed too expensive to mass-produce; his appearance is somewhat different from that of the others. He is the oldest of the seven Raggy Dolls in the Reject Bin. As his name suggests, he is very gloomy and cynical, but he still values his friendship with the other dolls.
  • Dotty – As the oldest next to the lethargic Sad Sack, she sees herself as the leader of the group and is often very bossy. She is so named because she accidentally had paint spilt on her hair and clothing. Dotty’s main catchphrase is: “Good thinking!”
  • Hi-Fi – He converses with stammer due to him being dropped during testing. It was also stated in episode “The Trouble with Claude” that he was wired incorrectly, hence the stammer. He always wears headphones, which allow him to tune into radio and communication signals from seemingly any source.
  • Lucy – Her limbs are inadequately attached with nylon thread. She is shy and easily frightened, but always kind-hearted and loyal to her friends. She can be brave on occasion, as first seen in the episode “Ghosts”. She speaks with a Derbyshire accent.
  • Back-To-Front – He is a handyman doll with a backward-facing head (as a result of the manufacturer putting his head on the wrong-way round) and a love of machines. Always calm in a crisis, Back-To-Front’s catchphrase is “No problem!”.
  • Claude – A French doll, who, unlike his companions, is actually perfect in every way. He fell out of a box of dolls being shipped to France and was left behind, being put in the bin out of a lack of other places. He speaks with a French accent, and sometimes alternates between speaking English and French. He also has a notable talent for cooking.
  • Princess – She should have been a beautiful princess doll, but the machine accidentally cut her hair and left her dress in rags. In the manner of a typical aristocrat, her voice is characterised by H-adding. As the opening titles indicate, Princess is the youngest of the original seven Raggy Dolls.
  • Ragamuffin – A wandering traveller doll who had lost his owner and decided to spend his life taking in new sights and experiences. Introduced in the fifth series.
  • Pumpernickle – A Scarecrow who is a friend to the Raggy Dolls.
  • Edward – Mr Grimes’s lost teddy bear who becomes a good friend to the Raggy Dolls.
  • Mr Marmalade – Mr Grimes’s pet cat who has a playful trait.
  • Hercules – An old farmhouse.
  • Rupert the Roo – An Australian toy kangaroo who had been mailed from Australia until he had become a new friend to the Raggy Dolls.
  • Natasha – A Russian Doll bought by Mrs Grimes.
  • Mr Oswald “Ozzie” Grimes – The owner of the toy factory. (Modeled on Yorkshire TV producer John Marsden)
  • Cynthia – appeared later in the series to be Mr Grimes’s love interest, and later wife. (Cynthia was modelled on Jo Kemp)
  • Florrie Fosdyke – A kind but forgetful cafeteria lady.
  • Farmer Brown – The farmer of One Pin Farm.
  • Ethel Grimes – Mr Grimes’s sister.
  • Oz and Boz – Ethel’s sons (hence Mr Grimes’s nephews), known as the Terrible Twins.

Teddy Bear Picnic- The Raggy Dolls

The Little Carthorse – The Raggy Dolls

We’re Not Amused – The Raggy Dolls