We are pleased to introduce Nadia Jones (of onlinecollage.com). Nadia is going to be doing reports for us every now and again. First up she is going to showcase some brilliant children's cartoons created in Russia.
While Russia may be the largest country in the world, its people sure know to create entertaining and creatively rich cartoons for their small ones. And best of all, many of the Russian children's cartoons are so genuinely endearing and well-produced that you often don't need to know the Russian language to thoroughly enjoy the shows and understand what's going on.
Since many of the classic Russian cartoons were created so long ago, they have very loose copyright restrictions and many of them are available to watch for free on YouTube. Still, you can also purchase many of these series from legitimate online merchants like Amazon.
Nu, Podogi! translates roughly to Well, Just You Wait! This is actually the most common line in the series, shouted by the wolf at the end of each episode after his plans to capture (and presumably eat) the hare are once again foiled.
This classic, very popular Russian cartoon is often compared to the American Tom and Jerry although, due to a complete lack of exchange of culture during the cold war era, the creator of Nu, Podogi! had never seen the American classic. Their most valuable similarities include their clever writing, unexpected turns, and great music. Of course, there are differences between the cartoons, most distinctly being that Nu, Podogi! features a wolf chasing a hare rather than a cat chasing a mouse. Also, the hare seems a bit more unassuming and less devious than the mouse in Tom and Jerry.
Like Tom and Jerry, this Russian classic uses very little spoken language (aside from the wolf's lamented, "Nu, Pogodi!"), so there is really no language barrier for this cartoon at all. Best of all, you can view countless episodes of this brilliant cartoon for free on YouTube (just keep following the most related video links after the first episode linked above).
The concept of Cheburashka began as piece of children's literature but soon after had an animated series made after it. Quite frankly, the Chebursashka character in this series is the most adorable cartoon character I've ever seen.
Unfortunately, there were not very many episodes of this series created, so I don't want to give too much away in describing it. Let me just give a few details:
- Cheburashka becomes great friends with a Crocodile named Gena.
- Gena has a job at the zoo … being a crocodile (love this).
- Cheburashka was not allowed to work at the zoo because he is an animal unknown to science and they didn't know where to put him.
If these details haven't sold you to the clever, warm, and genuine intricacies of the show, I'm not sure what will. There are so many things to love about this show. The soundtrack is rich and full of Russian musical style, and the characters are all extremely nice and exemplary in their behavior. Even the antagonist is as mild as a mischievous prankster.
Unfortunately, there are not very many English translations of episodes aside from the link I provided. However, you can purchase the Cheburashka DVD with English subtitles, which would be a perfect gift for a child just learning to read.
This is a guest post by Nadia Jones who blogs at online college about education, college, student, teacher, money saving, movie related topics. You can reach her at nadia.jones5 @ gmail.com.