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Traumafessions :: Reader M. on Ovide and the Gang

November 9th, 2010 by aunt john · 3 Comments

In the late ‘80s, when I was about 9 or 10, OVIDE AND THE GANG aired on UK children’s TV. It was a Canadian cartoon about a blue platypus and his friends, and their adventures on a South Sea island. OVIDE AND THE GANG was a fairly mild, gentle show, and to be honest I don’t have many strong memories of what occurred in each episode. Apart from one thing…

After each episode, the credits would roll over a montage of clips of the characters happily horsing around, to the strains of the upbeat, calypso style theme tune. Some slightly jarring, random shots then followed of a volcano violently erupting on the island. Seconds later, this was forgotten about and it was back to the montage of the characters happily horsing around again.

Then, in the last few seconds of the credits, a character called Sy (a nasty snake) was shown asleep in his house. Two mosquitoes would then fly in through the window, pierce his neck, and start sucking his blood. Then, it cut to a shot of a COFFIN, and suddenly ended. All to the same happy calypso theme tune. Having located this credit sequence on YouTube more than two decades later, it still creeps me out.

OVIDE may well have been a great little cartoon, but my overriding memory is of these bizarre, dark images inserted briefly into the credit sequence, completely out of step with the rest of the show. The rest of it can’t have been as weird as that, surely?

M

Tags: Name That Trauma!




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bdwilcox
bdwilcox
10 years ago

Yeah, what’s up with that? That’s really random and disturbing. Why would you end your cartoon with a casket?

At 1:07, the credits say the writer is Moloch. In history, Moloch was the demon god that people sacrificed their children to by burning them alive in a chamber of red hot metal. They would play drums so the child’s father couldn’t hear its screams as it cooked to death. From contemporaneous reports we know that as the child’s body burned, its mouth would curl back in what came to be called a ‘sardonic grin’ where it died smiling. Kind of odd to take on that name when writing a children’s cartoon.

Rawhide Almond Maché
Rawhide Almond Maché
10 years ago

That cartoon looks insane! Did one of them just lay a gold trophy?

Tim Tylor
Tim Tylor
10 years ago

I just about remember being puzzled by that too. I can’t think of any explanation other than a subliminal malaria-prevention message.