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Rub-a-Dub-Dub (TV series) facts for kids

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Genre Animation
Directed by Alan Rogers
Voices of Madeline Bell
John Telfer
Theme music composer Benni Lees
Opening theme "Rub-a-Dub-Dub"
Ending theme "Rub-a-Dub-Dub"
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 25
Producer(s) David Yates, Joe Wolf
Running time 5 minutes
Production company(s) David Yates Production
Distributor FremantleMedia
2 Entertain
Original network CITV
Picture format Colour
Original release 17 October (1984-10-17) – 20 November 1984 (1984-11-20)

Rub-A-Dub-Dub was an English television series animated by Peter Lang and Alan Rogers of the Cut-Out Animation Co. They were previously famous for Pigeon Street. The series was produced by David Yates and Joe Wolf. The title is a reference to the nursery rhyme Rub-a-dub-dub. Rub-A-Dub-Dub was animated in a similar way, yet all the characters were anthropomorphic animals. It ran in 1984, completing 25 episodes.

Episode structure

The episodes usually started off with the character Mother Goose and (most often) another character stood by a polka-dot patterned bathtub, with Mother Goose saying "Rub-a-dub-dub..." announcing that there was an item in the tub, an item that will then be relevant to the episode, e.g. "Rub-a-dub-dub, there's a kettle in the tub..." The line would then usually be followed up by another. In this case, the character King Crow appears at the window and says "...And King Crow wants his tea!" The nursery rhymes themselves would be dotted in amongst the humorous dialogue between the animal characters.


Principal characters

  • Mother Goose: Could be considered the hostess of Rub-A-Dub-Dub. She begins every episode by saying "Rub-a-dub-dub, there's a... in the tub." She is a white goose, wearing what looks to be a yellow raincoat and hat, a blue skirt beneath the coat and blue shoes. She also wears pink tights with white spots.
  • Polly: An irritable parrot. She often gets annoyed with various characters, such as with Mother Goose when she asks her to make King Crow's tea. In this instance, she responds "I'm not gonna make it! Why does it always have to be me!? Humph!" She also often appears to be on the receiving end of bad luck, such as when she sets her dinner down before the television, leaves to get a drink, and then finds her dinner has been stolen, to which she responds: "EH! Where did it go?!" Polly had a red face and blue hands and legs, wore a green jumper with red sleeves and yellow shoes.
  • King Crow: The King who is a crow. He was awfully demanding of his servants such as Polly, on whom he intrudes into her TV-watching time, saying "Hello Polly, get me my pipe and bowl please!" He was also awfully energetic and bounced around a lot. Like all crows, King Crow was black with a yellow beak. He wore a stereotypical King's robe and crown, black and white striped stockings and black-and-white shoes.
  • Queen Duck: The wife of King Crow.
  • Al E. Gator: An alligator who was somewhat of an antagonist on the show. He was always causing trouble, such as tripping over Baa Sheep and causing him to fall in mud, or interrupting Polly's favourite TV show as "Tonight's Special Guest". He wore a red coat and a top hat. In one episode, he lost his violin bow. He does have his good points though, as he helped nurse Yankee Doodle back to health when the latter knocked himself out after doing his morning exercises.
  • Baa Sheep: A white sheep who wore red shoes. He once fell victim to Al E. Gator's mischief, when he tripped him over and caused him to fall into a muddy puddle. This dirtied his wool. Displeased, he sang I do not like thee, Doctor Fell to him. Al E Gator simply laughed, before asking "What did I do wrong?" before leaving. Baa was also close to Mother Goose, who cleaned him up in the eponymous tub after this incident.
  • Buzz Tiger: A tiger with a fear of bees. He seemed to be romantically involved with Mary the giraffe.
  • Brian Lion: A lion who was good friends with Buzz and Blue.
  • Olga Ostrich: An ostrich who wore pink shoes. She once lost one of these shoes in one episode. She was also sat at the same restaurant as Polly when she had her dinner stolen.
  • The Penguin Trio: Three traveling penguins, who served as soldiers and musicians for King Crow as well as inattentive waiters at the restaurant.
  • Jack and Jill: Two twin pigs. They both wore blue and yellow tops and red shoes. one pig male wear a yellow striped red hat and the other pig female got blonde hair with two plaits with red bows. Jack was more heavily featured than his sister, although in Jack and Jill, Mrs. Mason's Basin and Jack Sprat they were featured together. They were Elsie Pig's children and had a baby sibling.
  • Elsie Pig: The mother of Jack and Jill and an unnamed baby. She wore a yellow and black dress and matching hat. She appeared to be a cleaner in the castle like Mother Goose.
  • Blue: A blue hippopotamus who wore a yellow raincoat and rain hat, similar to Mother Goose. He was featured on Polly's favorite Western TV show. He was due to face off in a duel with Yankee Doodle, before they were interrupted by Al E. Gator. He also appeared as Santa Claus in one episode.
  • Yankee Doodle: A white rooster married to Mrs. Doodle. He was often seen jogging and weightlifting. He was featured on Polly's favorite Western TV show. He was due to face off in a duel with Blue the hippo, before being interrupted by Al E. Gator.
  • Mrs. Doodle: A brown hen who was married to Yankee Doodle.
  • Tom Cat: A young cat who went to London to see the Queen. The Queen Duck asked him to catch one of the mice in the castle, but ended up knocking all of the furniture over and was sent away. He was often depicted as a troublemaker who enjoyed stealing others' food.
  • Yellow Dog: A yellow dog who wears a blue sweater and often liked to make jokes.
  • Mice: Three mice that were often in some nursery rhymes, one dressed as a Chef, one as a Butcher, and one in a yellow top with red, green and blue stars.
  • Mary Giraffe: A giraffe who wore a blue sweatshirt with a giraffe number 11 and a pink skirt with pink shoes. She often appeared to be romantically involved with Buzz the Tiger.
  • Barney Owl: An owl who wore a purple coat and hat and glasses. He was married to an unnamed female owl, who was often seen with Queen Duck.
  • Roland Turtle: A green turtle who wore brown shoes and glasses with yellow edges. He had the ability to attach wheels to the bottom of his shell, as well as roller skates, use his shell as a boat and also travel by balloon.
  • Quincy the Spider: A spider who wore green, red and yellow roller skates.
  • Pat Cat: An orange, bespectacled cat who played the role of the teacher in Mary Had a Little Lamb.
  • Melody Moo: a red cow who appeared to be a bit of a performer, often seen singing at the restaurant.
  • Ned the Horse: A white horse who wore red shoes. He is a bit of a troublemaker and does not speak at all. One time, he took King Crow's crown for being called a unicorn when he wore a candle on his head.
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