Krtek

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Krtek
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Genre: Animated, comedy
Running Time: 1-29 min
Country: Czechoslovakia
Release Date: 1957
Network(s): Česká Televize
Created by: Zdenek Miler
Seasons: 1
Episodes: 51
Next show: Krtek a Panda


Summary

Krtek is an Czech animated created by animator and illustrator Zdeněk Miler. He was asked to make an educational short film. Being influenced by Disney productions of the time he wanted to use an animal character never seen before in animated movies. After bumping into a molehill during a walk he got the idea of using a mole as a main character. Thats led to the first film called Jak krtek ke kalhotkám přišel (How the mole got his trousers), which won a Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival.

The series consists of 25 short films, 6 half an hour movies and a series running from 1996 to 2002. It's main character the little mole called Krtek. In the beginning of most of the episodes he digs through the ground only to explore his surronding. He often gets amazed by the things he finds (such as an old radio, a trashed umbrella or buried phone) and uses them in a variety of ways. (sometimes the objects actually come to life) The later episodes rather focuses on the Adventures of the mole and other wood critters in their forest.

The mole only speak in the first short. In the later episodes he and his friends (including humans too) barely says anything (only babbling and few czech world). Making the show easy to break the langauge Barriers. Because of that Krtek was a huge success in Czechoslovakia, Eastern Europe, and Germany from the beginning, and today Krtek can be seen in over 80 countries.


Why It Rocks

  1. The main characters are cute and likeable. Especially the mole.
  2. While the animation in the later episodes not as detailed as in the first short (How Mole Got His Trousers) it has more elaborate animation compared to other europan cartoons of the time
  3. Amazing music. Each of the shorts and the movies have their original theme ( the most well known is probably the theme song of the Mole and the Car). Interestingly the episode Mole and the Rocket uses an earlier version of "The Busy World of Richard Scarry"s theme song. (created by the same compositor)
  4. Most of the episodes have a good moral to children (Especially Krtek in the big town where their forest gets destroyed only to replaced with a huge city). It's also touches subjects like death or childbirth (indeed the episode "Mole and the Mother" Has an actual non graphic birth scene in it)
  5. Due to the lack of speech it's easy to understand every episode for little kids.
  6. Creative plots such as the mole trying to put back a star on the sky or the mole getting inside of a dream of rich man.


Bad Qualities

  1. Some of the episodes can be disturbing. For example in the episode "the mole and the television" the mole sees a commercial of mole killing poison, or the aformentioned Mole and the Mother. The most disturbing scene is in the last episode where the mole almosts dies in a car accident and his friends visiby put his ascending soul back to him.
  2. In some episode the mole gets naughty and does acts such as shooting pebbles at an old man. However he remains nice in almost all the movies.

Reception

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