My All Time Favourite Childhood Film and TV Productions | Little Moose

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Vintage TV
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I was definitely a child of Television. As 20 year olds today are children of video games and YouTube, I was a child of Super Nintendo, black & white TV and VHS. I was also even more old school and a bit mixed up when it came to TV and films because I am an MK. We lived in the Middles East so I didn't have access to English films and TV series as easily as my peers would have.

My parents friends would very kindly record programmes off the TV and post them to us for me to watch. Therefore I was brought up on a mixture of Look, Listen and Learn, educational kids programmes, David Attenborough and the odd episode of Lassie (obviously repeated on some channel in the 1980s). Now and again the programme I was watching and really enjoying would end abruptly as the tape ran out or something else had been recorded over it. I still don't know what happened at the end of that episode of Bodger the Badger. When we visited the UK, mum would pick up Disney films for me to take home, films I would watch over and over and over again.

So here are some of the films that I look back on with fondness and love, films I believe set me on the path to filmmaking in the first place.

1. The Land Before Time

First up - the reason I used to be terrified that my mother would die and leave me. If you have never watched this incredible Don Bluth animated film (maker of An American Tail and All Dogs Go To Heaven) produced by Steven Spielberg then go and watch it! These were the days when kids cartoons were character driven and told beautiful, meaningful stories about growing up, relationships and sorrow. Also, it's all about DINOSAURS and when I was 6 it was ALL about the dinosaurs. I was obsessed with them.

Most memorable moment: Littlefoot and the water droplets gathering in the star shaped leaf

Most terrible moment: The bit with Littlefoot and the old wisened dinosaur. Yeah. You know which part I mean.

2.  An American Tail

Don Bluth made some great films. Beat Disney anyday. There is a theme starting to trend through all these productions of children being parted from their family in tragic and horrifying ways, which in some ways I like because I think it's a great way to teach and prepare children for life. On the other hand I am positive my innate fear of losing people I love stems from these heart-breaking animations. Fivel is a little mouse who gets lost when he and his family emigrated from Russia to America on a large boat.

Most memorable moment: "Somewheeeere outttt there..."

Most terrible moment: The massive, evil wave creature in the sea....brrrrr

3. Pete's Dragon

A dragon's kind of like a dinosaur, right? Pete is a little boy with no parents (seriously, what is with the no parents/lost kid theme!) who's only friend is an invisible dragon only Pete can see. I used to particularly adore this one because as well as being animation mixed with live action, it was also a musical. Some great songs in there!

Most memorable moment: The scary dude who wants to chop Pete's dragon into little bits!

Most terrible moment: When Pete and his new family are trying to escape his evil foster family who treat him like a slave and they're escaping in a REALLY SLOW rowing boat

4. Scooby Doo

I can't remember how many episodes of this we had recorded on VHS but I loved the ones we had. Scooby was my hero and I loved the ghost stories.

Most memorable moment: Learning that dry ice can create fake fog (That's what they said at the end of the show!)

Most terrible moment: C'mon! It's Scooby Doo

5. Dogtanian

This French translated TV animation for some reason I absolutely adored. I still don't know why. I adored dogs so maybe that had some bearing on my affections. I remember loving the character of Dogtanian and interestingly enough I loved the book later when I grew up so maybe it's just the story was good. Oh, and the theme tune ROCKED!

Most memorable moment: Dogtanian getting beat up and living in an inn while he gets better (brutal for a kids show!)

Most terrible moment: I think his father's sword got broken at one point. Really sad.

6.  Gnomes

This was the 1980 American animated film, beautifully animated story about a family of gnomes living in the wood. The eldest son is about to get married but some nasty trolls are determined to ruin the wedding

Most memorable moment: The stunning images from the original book where the narrator uses the slow pans across to tells us more about gnomes and trolls

Most terrible moment: This may have been one of those VHS recording that got cut I still don't know how it all ended!

What was your favourite childhood TV show or film? Let me know in the comments!

lots of love
Little Moose

P.S  Please do check out my short story "Edward's First Love" based on true events around the founder and pioneer of one of the first railways in the UK, the Stockton-Darlington railway. It was published on and is now available for download on the Kindle:

Edward's First Love