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Avenger Penguins
Avenger Penguins Titles.png
Genre Animation
Developed by Brian Cosgrove
Mark Hall
Written by Jimmy Hibbert
Phil Jackson
Malcolm McGookin
Roger Stennett
Stefan Redfern
Rob Rackstraw
Directed by Jean Scott
Jean Flynn
Voices of Jimmy Hibbert
Lorelei King
Mike McShane
Rob Rackstraw
Composer(s) Phil Bush
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 26
Executive producer(s) Mark Hall
Brian Cosgrove
Producer(s) Ben Turner
Running time 22 minutes
Production company(s) Cosgrove Hall Films
Distributor ITV Studios
Original network ITV Network (CITV)
Picture format 4:3
Original release 22 September 1993 (1993-09-22) – 9 December 1994 (1994-12-09)

Avenger Penguins is a British animated series produced by Cosgrove Hall Films and Granada Television in 1993, and animated by both Alfonso Productions, a Spanish-based animation studio also responsible for bringing Cosgrove Hall's show Fantomcat to life, and in-house by Cosgrove Hall themselves. It aired originally on Children's ITV and was originally going to be called Hell's Penguins, although was it renamed out of concern for how the religious audience in the US would respond. 26 episodes aired from 1993 to 1994.

The show has the distinction of being the last Cosgrove Hall cartoon to be animated using hand-painted animation cels, as all 2D animated series from the studio thereafter would use computers for the ink and paint process; with the animation, drawings scanned and then digitally colored. This was the first major Cosgrove Hall carton without the aid of Thames Television who had lost their ITV franchise at the end of 1992. The show was instead distributed on the ITV network by Cosgrove Hall's local regional TV company Granada instead.

The entire series was released on a three-disc DVD box set in March 2006 by Delta Leisure Group PLC.


As with most Cosgrove Hall cartoons, the series poked fun at the popular concepts of having creatures performing inhuman action feats and stunts in an animated medium, made popular by the then enormously successful Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise. The core of the show's theme is coincidentally similar to Biker Mice from Mars.


The story revolves around three bike-riding Penguins that inhabit Big City, uniting to protect it and its citizens from the evil Caractacus P. Doom, an insane and reclusive criminal scientist. The Penguins attempt to prevent Doom's schemes but find themselves often hampered by their own miscommunicating and occasional scraps with other biker gangs infesting Big City, such as The Stink Brothers, a canine squad of Hell's Angels.

The cast, like Danger Mouse, Count Duckula and Victor and Hugo: Bunglers in Crime had with David Jason, boasted a star talent in a major role, this time in the form of Mike McShane as the Penguin's un-coordinated but brash leader Marlon, as well as the villainous Doom. To show how the series was mocking the often rushed animation style of the original TMNT series, two supporting characters are known as "The Badly Drawn Brothers" were always left with the design construction lines still showing out of deliberate neglect.

Pop culture references were found in abundance in many of the episodes and in the characters. Doom himself is patterned on an elderly Orson Welles, Harry Slime (who talks like Peter Lorre) in the meantime is based somewhat on Harry Lime, a character from the movie The Third Man. The Season 2 episode, "The 23rd Century" also served as a parody of Star Trek, and of science fiction in general.

Voice cast

  • Marlon: Mike McShane
  • Rocky: Rob Rackstraw
  • Bluey: Jimmy Hibbert
  • Bella: Jimmy Hibbert
  • Caractacus P. Doom: Mike McShane
  • Harry Slime: Jimmy Hibbert
  • Various other characters: Mike McShane, Rob Rackstraw, Jimmy Hibbert and Lorelei King.
  • Theme song vocalist: Paul Young


The transmission dates come from The Guardian and Kaleidoscope.

Series one (1993–1994)

No. Title Original air date
1 "The President Is a Fish!" 22 September 1993 (1993-09-22)
Doom is going to replace the president with a clone. Marlon and Rocky are captured running into Doom's tower and the two of them with the president are turned into fish, but Bluey comes to their aid.
2 "The Hog Jamboree" 29 September 1993 (1993-09-29)
Marlon enters the Hog Jamboree, which Doom has rigged. Bluey manages to reprogram Doom's seeker missile and win the Jamboree.
3 "Big City, Little City" 6 October 1993 (1993-10-06)
Doom sends Slime to an orbiting satellite to shrink Big City's population and replace them with monsters. After evading the monsters, the penguins head to Doom's salleite and terminate Doom's shrinking effects.
4 "Computer Chaos" 13 October 1993 (1993-10-13)
Doom brings some video game villains to life, sucks Marlon and Rocky into the game and tries to squich them. Bluey the computer expert comes to the rescue.
5 "I Married an Android!" 20 October 1993 (1993-10-20)
Doom creates an android to brainwash Marlon into a life of suburban bliss and blandness so that Rocky and Bluey are leaderless and uninspired.
6 "Cat Pig-Cat of Iron" 27 October 1993 (1993-10-27)
Irv's 'nephew' Billy Neptune comes to stay with the Penguins. He seems convinced that he is a super-hero but manages to save the three biking birds in the end when Doom captures them.
7 "Nightmare at Tea-Time" 3 November 1993 (1993-11-03)
Mr. Doom's nightmare machine invades the penguins dreams but eventually turns on its master. (This episode references Planet Cute from 'The Vampire Strikes Back' an episode of 'Count Duckula')
8 "Star Struck" 10 November 1993 (1993-11-10)
A movie fan alien visits a film set where Doom and Slime are trying to kill the penguins who are there as stuntmen. The episode references 'E.T.', 'Star Wars' and 'Blackadder'. It is the first appearance of Dolores Devine.
9 "The Quantum Mechanic" 17 November 1993 (1993-11-17)
Doom uses Bluey's brain to create mind monsters from Bluey's favourite show, Quantum Mechanic and Googerplex. Bella manages to turn Quantum against Doom and save the penguins.
10 "The Wild, Wild, Wild, Wild West" 24 November 1993 (1993-11-24)
Professor Boring (a cheery fellow) and his wife Euphoria (a depressed woman) have their time machine's transanium crystal stolen enabling Doom to send Harry Slime back to the old west to stake claims on all the gold.
11 "The Labyrinth Of Doom" 1 December 1993 (1993-12-01)
The Avenger Penguins and The Stink Brothers enter an underground motorcycle challenge along with Carberetta Gasoline, a tough lady biker who starts off working for Doom but eventually changes her mind and becomes friends with the Penguins.
12 "A Winter's Tale" 8 December 1993 (1993-12-08)
Doom sacks Slime and sends him out into the cold where he befriends the Sweetheart Fairy Angel. Together they get revenge on Doom who is seeking to make the penguins homeless.
13 "The Revenge of Doom" 5 January 1994 (1994-01-05)
After a year trapped on Mars, Caractacus P. Doom returns to seek revenge and challenges the penguins to a contest.

Series two (1994)

No. Title Original air date
1 "The 23rd Century" 16 September 1994 (1994-09-16)
The Avenger Penguins are brought to the future to head to the Doomstar of Doom's descendant Lucidious Q. Doom and stop her firing the freezing ray on the globe.
This episode was originally called "Where No Penguin Has Gone Before".
2 "Mommy's Boy" 23 September 1994 (1994-09-23)
When Rocky's mother visits and drags him out to the shops, this give 'Dave Penguin' a perfect chance to take his place.
3 "Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Penguin?" 30 September 1994 (1994-09-30)
Doom replaces Slime with the more efficient, but traitorous Miss DeMeanor. Slime and Doom hatch a plan with the Penguins to get her to leave.
4 "Surprise Fate" 7 October 1994 (1994-10-07)
The Penguins appear as guests on a dating show. Doom rigs the contest so Marlon wins a date with escaped loony, Annabelle the Animal, who has a desire to eat anything that's black and white, for example PENGUINS!
5 "High Doom" 14 October 1994 (1994-10-14)
The old Doc relates a tale from the Wild West, where Beauregarde Doom and his gang try and rob a bank and some penguin lawmen try to escape Humungously Big Mad Joe.
6 "The Jewel in the Crown" 21 October 1994 (1994-10-21)
With Marlon and Bluey trapped at a sleazy night-club where Doom is negotiating a deal for a diamond. Rocky, Slime and Dolores Devine travel (by accident) to an ancient temple.
7 "A Christmas Carol" 28 October 1994 (1994-10-28)
Charles Dickens' novel of the same name is parodied in this episode. Doom realises he must restore power to the city after he blacks it out.
8 "Fishfinger" 4 November 1994 (1994-11-04)
Rocky is hired by the President to infiltrate Zigmund Fishfinger's (Doom's) lair and rescue Miss Leatherclad-Fullerain. Marlon and Bluey sneak along for this James Bond style spoof.
9 "Disgusting Or What?" 11 November 1994 (1994-11-11)
Mr. Doom under-estimates the power of his latest invention, a monster composed of the most horrible garbage in the city. Meanwhile, after Marlon gets knocked on the head, he starts thinking he is his favourite movie hero, Valentine Lovescones.
10 "Rock 'n Roll Penguins" 18 November 1994 (1994-11-18)
Much of the episode has the characters bursting into song. Doom is going to blow up the penguins with their own bikes, but Slime has not made the preparations for that.
11 "The Computer of Doom" 25 November 1994 (1994-11-25)
Bluey's addiction to computer games comes in useful when Doom invades the international computer network with a virus.
12 "Sherlock's Penguins" 2 December 1994 (1994-12-02)
The Avenger Penguins travel to London to tackle Caractacus P. Doom's cousin, Professor Moriarty, who has unleashed a drug into the water supply which causes everyone to treat each other unfairly.
13 "Beauties and the Beasts" 9 December 1994 (1994-12-09)
After Slime's failure to get the penguins, Doom creates two ladies who can switch between pretty and ugly, but they blow themselves up. Then Slime takes over Doom's place.

International broadcasts

  • Australia Australia
    • ABC (1995–1997)
    • 7Two (2009–2011)
  • Chile Chile
    • Megavision (1994–1996)
    • Canal 13 (1995–2001)
    • UCV Television (1997–1998)
  • Germany Germany
    • ProSieben
  • Hong Kong Hong Kong
    • TVB Pearl
  • Iceland Iceland
    • BBC Prime (1995–1996)
  • Republic of Ireland Ireland
  • Israel Israel
  • Japan Japan
  • Kenya Kenya
    • KBC
  • Malaysia Malaysia
    • TV1 (1996–1999)
    • TV3 (1998–2000)
  • Poland Poland
    • TVP Regionalna
  • Portugal Portugal
    • TVI (2002)
  • Singapore Singapore
  • South Africa South Africa
    • SABC2
  • Sweden Sweden
  • United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates
    • Dubai 33
  • Thailand Thailand
    • IBC7
  • Zimbabwe Zimbabwe
    • ZBC TV
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