Today: July 9, 2024

Chorlton and the Wheelies

There’s only one reason why you should buy Chorlton and the Wheelies: it’s joy incarnate. No matter what the world throws at you, no matter how bone-achingly tired you feel, I guarantee that Chorlton and the Wheelies will leave you smiling.

Chorlton and The Wheelies was the first production from the iconic Cosgrove Hall Films who went on to produce legendary children’s series such as Danger Mouse, Count Duckula, Jamie & The Magic Torch and Cockleshell Bay.

Wheelie World is a land inhabited by the Wheelies. Long ago, the land was full of happiness and laughter, until the wicked witch, Fenella, arrived and set up home in Spout Hall — a kettle — on the outskirts of Wheelie Kingdom. Casting her evil spell over the land, the colour faded from the world,  laughter was silenced, and the Wheelies became sad and dejected.

Then, one day, a large, brightly coloured egg arrived and from it emerged a strange and wonderful creature — Chorlton, a Happiness Dragon, whose simple worldview and unshakable positivity brought joy and laughter to the Wheelies … and much frustration to the outrageously Welsh Fenella the Kettle Witch

Over 40 episodes, Fenella spends her time trying to destroy the happiness that Chorlton radiates — while Chorlton himself remains blissfully ignorant of the machinations of “the little old lady”.

The idea for The Wheelies came about when Brian Cosgrove had a dream about heads on wheels. Without legs, which needed to be manipulated multiple times every second, the production team “could steam through shows at a rate of knots to get stuff on the air,” said Mark Hall.

Fabulous Films have already treated us to re-issues of Count Duckula, Jamie and the Magic Torch, and Wind in the Willows — and their latest box set is yet another wonderful slice of retro silliness.

Running to 40 episodes — 436 minutes — Chorlton and the Wheelies is absolutely top-notch nostalgia from a company who seems to know exactly how to please us.

Paula Hammond - Features Editor

Paula Hammond is a full-time, freelance journalist. She regularly writes for more magazines than is healthy and has over 25 books to her credit. When not frantically scribbling, she can be found indulging her passions for film, theatre, cult TV, sci-fi and real ale. If you should spot her in the pub, after five rounds rapid, she’ll be the one in the corner mumbling Ghostbusters quotes and waiting for the transporter to lock on to her signal… Email: writerpaula@icloud.com

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