Quick facts for kidsDoug
|Created by||Jim Jinkins|
|Theme music composer||Fred Newman|
|Country of origin||United States
France (original series)
|No. of seasons||7|
|No. of episodes||117 (166 segments) (list of episodes)|
|Running time||22–23 minutes|
|Original network||Nickelodeon (seasons 1-4)
ABC (seasons 5-7)
|Original release||August 11, 1991– June 26, 1999|
Doug is an American animated television series created by Jim Jinkins and produced by Jumbo Pictures. The show focuses on the early adolescent life of its title character, Douglas "Doug" Funnie, who experiences common predicaments while attending school in his new hometown of Bluffington. Doug narrates each story in his journal, and the show incorporates many imagination sequences. The series addresses numerous topics, including trying to fit in, platonic and romantic relationships, self-esteem, bullying, and rumors. Many episodes center on Doug's attempts to impress his classmate and crush, Patti Mayonnaise.
Jinkins developed Doug from drawings in his sketchbook that he created over the course of the 1980s. Doug, a mostly autobiographical creation, was largely inspired by Jinkins's childhood growing up in Virginia, with most characters in the series being based on real individuals. He first pitched Doug as a children's book to uninterested publishers before Nickelodeon purchased the show. Following this, the series underwent further development, in which Jinkins meticulously detailed every aspect of the show's setting. Jinkins was insistent that the series would have a purpose and instructed writers to annotate each script with a moral. The show's unusual soundtrack consists largely of scat singing and mouth noises.
The series premiered on August 11, 1991 on the cable network Nickelodeon, as the channel's first original animated content alongside Rugrats and The Ren & Stimpy Show. The original run consisted of 52 episodes over four seasons that were broadcast from 1991 to 1994. Nickelodeon opted against renewing the show for a fifth season, so in 1996, Disney green-lit the fifth season after acquiring Jumbo Pictures. Jinkins made several creative changes during this time. The show moved to ABC's Saturday morning lineup for three years. It became a top-rated show, inspiring various books, merchandise, a live musical stage show, and a theatrical feature, Doug's 1st Movie, released as the series' conclusion in 1999.
Doug revolves around Douglas "Doug" Funnie, an 11 (later 12)-year-old boy who wants to be another face in the crowd, but by possessing a vivid imagination and a strong sense of right and wrong, he is more likely to stand out. He keeps a journal, which he treats as an autobiography, as he records numerous experiences over the series, which range from learning to dance to getting a bad haircut. Doug Funnie and his family (which consists of his parents Theda and Phil, sister Judy, and dog Porkchop) move from the town of Bloatsburg to Bluffington after his dad receives a job promotion. Bluffington is in the United States but not in any specific U.S. state. However, Bluffington is loosely based on the city of Richmond, Virginia, where creator Jim Jinkins was born and raised.
Beyond the title character, Doug features a large ensemble cast of characters. Many of the series' ancillary characters, among them Ms. Wingo and Mr. Spitz, are based on authority figures from Jinkins' childhood.
- Douglas Yancey "Doug" Funnie (voiced by Billy West in the Nickelodeon series; Tom McHugh in the Disney series): Doug is depicted as a shy, insecure, self-conscious, and gullible 11 (later 12)-year-old boy who more often than not tries to deal with his fear of failure. He has talents for writing, drawing, making music (he plays a banjo), and caring for animals (he owns a dog named Porkchop). While Doug just wants to fit in with his peers, he has a vivid imagination and an unparalleled sense of morality that both make him stand out amongst them. Doug narrates every episode and writes his experiences in his journal. He has an alter ego, Quailman, who was inspired by Jinkins's and Roberts's childhood home movies in which they posed as superheroes. Billy West, the original voice behind Doug, was assigned by executive Vanessa Coffey, to Jinkins's initial reluctance, but Jinkins would eventually come to view it as the best possible voice for the character. West, in recording lines for Doug, noted that "There's a lot of me in there, because I'm going through my own experiences in there, because I have a conscience."
- Porkchop (voiced by Fred Newman): Doug's anthropomorphic pet dog that is one of Doug's sidekicks and accompanies him nearly everywhere he goes. He sometimes assists Doug in making decisions and acts as his conscience. Pork chop is very talented in many things such as acting. He lives in an igloo-shaped doghouse in the Nickelodeon series, and a tipi in the Disney series. During a Christmas special, it is shown that Doug got Porkchop as a Christmas gift and that Porkchop once saved Beebe Bluff's life when she was about to fall through some thin ice. Porkchop, along with Doug, originally first appeared in ID spots for the USA Network children's block, USA Cartoon Express.
- Mosquito "Skeeter" Valentine (voiced by Fred Newman): Skeeter is Doug's best friend. He occasionally makes honking noises. Skeeter and his family have lived in Bluffington for some time, so he helps Doug acclimate to Bluffington. For example, Skeeter helps Doug order food at the popular Bluffington restaurant Honker Burger in the series premiere (resulting in their friendship). The character was based on Jinkins' high school best friend, Tommy Roberts.
- Patricia "Patti" Mayonnaise (voiced by Constance Shulman): Patti is an intelligent, lovely, talented, and athletic girl who is Doug's female best friend and love interest. She is kind and helpful, but she does have weaknesses, such as a tendency to be competitive and to anger easily if pushed too far. Jinkins based the character on his adolescent crush from junior high and high school, and culled her name from two girls from his childhood, Pam Mayo and a girl named Patty.
- Roger M. Klotz (voiced by Billy West in the Nickelodeon series, Chris Phillips in the Disney series): Roger is Doug's nemesis/frenemy and a school bully. He is not much of a bully, however, as he usually makes fun of everyone and plays practical jokes. He is older than others in his class, as it took him three years to graduate from sixth grade. Roger has a crush on Doug's sister Judy and in certain episodes tries to woo her. Roger and his divorced mother lived in a trailer park in the Nickelodeon series; in the Disney series, Roger's family becomes wealthy from a real-estate deal struck between the owner of the trailer park and the Bluff family. Roger was inspired from a bully who lived in the same neighborhood as Jinkins. He adopted the bully's neighbors' last name, Klotz, for the character.
- Beebe Bluff (voiced by Alice Playten): The heiress to the Bluff family fortune. Beebe is the daughter of Bill Bluff, the richest man in the town and a friend of Mayor White. The Bluff family is the namesake of the town of Bluffington, and in the second series, the school is even named after Beebe. Despite a certain air of superiority over her peers, Beebe maintains friendships with Patti Mayonnaise and most of her other contemporaries. Doug had his first kiss with her in the episode "Doug's Secret Admirer", although it was out of gratitude rather than love, since she already has a crush on Skeeter. Beebe was Alice Playten's final animated role before her death in 2011.
- Chalky Studebaker (voiced by Doug Pries): Chalky is considerably the most athletic of Doug's main circle of friends, and he is an excellent student. He wants to follow the footsteps of his older brother, Cliff.
- Connie Benge (voiced by Becca Lish): A naive schoolgirl who is best friends with Patti and Beebe, and also one of Doug's friends. She had a small crush on Doug in the Nickelodeon series. Although she was rather heavy-set in the first series, she lost weight between the two series and received a new wardrobe and hairstyle after visiting a beauty farm, making her look quite different in either show. In certain episodes of the first series, the color schemes for Connie's hair and skin are switched, giving her lime green hair and violet skin instead of indigo hair and pale green skin.
- Judith "Judy" Anastasia Funnie (voiced by Becca Lish): Judy Funnie is Doug's older sister. Judy is very intelligent and especially dramatic. Unsurprisingly, she attends the Moody School, a school for artistically talented teenagers. Judy often gives or directs performances at Bluffington Elementary, which Doug initially dreads out of fear that Judy will embarrass him (as she has done in the past). Judy is usually seen wearing only purple and black, and rarely takes off her beret or her sunglasses. (Becca Lish also voices Doug's mother, Theda Funnie, his friend Connie Benge, bass player Wendy Nespah of Doug's favorite band The Beets, the hairdresser Fluke and many other characters.)
- Al and Moo Sleech (voiced by Eddie Korbich): Nerdy twin brothers and two of Doug's best friends. Doug looks to them for technical help whenever he needs it. In the Disney series, they skip all of the middle school grades and enter high school, but they maintain their relationships with Doug and others. They are each shown to have a crush on Judy. The two try to hide the fact that their father is not as intelligent as they are and is a hardworking doughnut baker.
- Mr. Bud Dink (voiced by Fred Newman): A slightly odd, purple-skinned, dimwitted, retiree who lives next door to the Funnies with his wife and foil, Tippy (voiced by Doris Belack). Doug frequently approaches Mr. Dink for advice, but sometimes it is useless. He and his wife's last name comes from an acronym: Dual Income, No Kids, which supports Mr. Dink's spending on various things he claims as "very expensive". In later Nickelodeon episodes, Mrs. Dink becomes mayor of Bluffington, a role she continues in the Disney version.
Doug Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.