CULT FACTION

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The World of David the Gnome

gnomeBased on the books written by the Dutch author Wil Huygen and illustrator Rien Poortvliet, these cutesy gnome related shenanigans ran for 23 episodes when suddenly EVERYONE DIED. Unbelievably the final episode of this animated television series created in Spain by BRB International (who was also responsible for the Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds franchise) kills off the six inch main character and his eight ounce wife. Even for a children’s program that sucked you in with the gentle voice acting of Tom Bosley then hit you with telepathy and mind control this was rather extreme stuff. It’s hard to imagine that the soon to be rebooted Bob the Builder will end with the equivalent of Bob and Wendy heading off to DIGNITAS, yet this is exactly what happened in ‘David the Gnome’

The most depressing ending to anything ever goes like this… David the Gnome and his wife Lisa must go off into the mountains because their time on Earth is almost over and they know they will not live past 400 years old. They receive a message from their old friend Casper who explains that he does not want to go (i.e. die) alone. On the way, David and Lisa meet up with all the lovely furry animals from their other 23 adventures, which have all come to say goodbye. Then they travel to the Blue Mountains and have tea with Casper. They tell their faithful fox friend Swift he cannot climb up the mountain with them and The Gnomes ascend the mountain, to say their final goodbyes. As David and Lisa pass on, their bodies turn into intertwined apple trees. Casper passes moments later, after rather bizarrely muttering to himself for a while. On the way back to the forest, Swift meets another gnome named Christopher, who rides a female fox named Agnes. Swift and Agnes appear to be romantically interested in each other. The spirits of the passed Gnomes wave goodbye.

Unbearably bleak though the ending was it is nice to have a cartoon that actually has a conclusion rather than the usual scenario where they just stop drawing them. ‘David the Gnome’ is worth checking out just for its wonderful darkly surreal ending that would have kids from any era weeping into their Um Bongo.

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Stephen Pryde-Jarman is a Cult TV and Film journalist, award winning short story writer, playwright and screenwriter. A natural hoarder, second hand shopping fulfils his basic human need for hunter-gathering; but rummaging through a charity shop’s bric-a-brac shelf also brought him the inspiration for his novel Rubble Girl having seen a picture of a Blitz survivor sat amongst the rubble of her house with a cup and saucer. Rubble Girl has been described as " thought-provoking" and "fast paced ... with plenty of twists and turns." Amazon.

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