Wednesday, 24 December 2014
43 Noggin The Nog
First watched : Uncertain
Noggin had been off screen for a while before it was briefly brought back in August 1970 to fill gaps in the teatime schedule while Jackanory and Blue Peter had a summer break. Noggin The Nog was the first of Postgate and Firmin's shows to be aired on BBC ( in 1959 ) as Ivor The Engine had been broadcast by ITV.
Noggin was the young king of a Northern land, always assumed to be Scandinavian largely because the character design was based on the Norwegian-made Lewis chessmen. He was a benevolent ruler who constantly had to fend off threats from his uncle Nogbad the Bad who wished to usurp his throne. The stories wed something to Norse saga in the storytelling mode but do not integrate actual Norse myth.
Noggin the Nog has been much-praised over the years but it never really grabbed me. Perhaps I couldn't see past the beyond-primitive animation which makes Pogles' Wood look like The Matrix. It's said that Noggin brought a blast of Scandinavian darkness into kids viewing though I suspect its look owed more to Firmin's intelligent appreciation of what would work best on monochrome TV.