Shaun the Sheep
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Shaun the Sheep was originally introduced as a sidekick of Wallace and Gromit in the Oscar-winning short film "A Close Shave". He also once featured in Cracking Contraptions, testing Wallace's invention called "the Shopper 13". Shaun got his name after he had all his wool shaven off by one of Wallace's contraptions. From that point onward, he wore a sweater made from the wool. Pronounced in British English, "Shaun" is a homophone for "shorn".
It's countryside chaos as Shaun The Sheep returns to the small screen with his very own series. Shaun is a sheep who doesn’t follow the flock – in fact, he leads them into all sort of scrapes and scraps, turning peace in the valley into mayhem in the meadow. Shaun and his pals run rings around their poor sheepdog Bitzer, as he tries to stop the Farmer finding out what’s going on behind his back. The show also introduces a farmyard-full of new characters, including the Naughty Pigs, Timmy the baby lamb and the enormous Shirley, a sheep who eats anything and everything.
Every day brings a new adventure for Shaun – a stray cabbage bouncing into the field turns into a football feud with the Naughty Pigs, and a freezing cold sheep dip sends him on a commando raid to get hot water from the Farmer’s bathroom. With high-energy slapstick and classic silent comedy in Aardman’s world-beating animation style, one thing’s for sure – when Shaun’s around, the countryside will never be the same again!
- Off The Baa!
- Shape Up With Shaun
- Timmy In A Tizzy
- Still Life
- Mower Mouth
- Take Away
- The Bull
- Saturday Night Shaun (Titled "Heavy Metal Shaun" in USA)
- The Kite (Working Title: "Being for the Benefit of Shaun's Kite!". This was mistaken to be the actual production name)
- Little Sheep of Horrors
- Who's the Mummy?
- Shaun Shoots the Sheep
- Big Top Timmy
- Mountains Out of Moleholes
- Buzz off Bees
- Things That Go Bump
The 40 part series, "Shaun the Sheep" has been produced at Aardman's Bristol studios. Shaun is said to be having many adventures in this series such as synchronised swimming in a sheep dip and disguising himself in a scarecrow costume, all of which are with his fellow flock. The series has been aired on Danish television. One episode will feature a character designed by a Blue Peter competition winner.
The theme tune is sung by the comedian Vic Reeves.
Shaun is a sheep who does not follow the flock. Inquisitive, imaginative and mischievous, his lively personality marks him out from the other sheep in his field. His fun-loving, maverick nature is forever leading him into tricky situations, but he usually proves resourceful enough to come out on top.
Popular with the rest of the flock and a natural leader, Shaun's independence is sometimes undermined by his relative youth and naiveté. He confronts problems with a can-do sheep-like logic, but has a tendency to leap before he looks – this mix of enthusiasm and inexperience is often a recipe for trouble. But despite his recklessness, he has an inherent sense of responsibility and will try to make amends for the chaos he causes.
Unlike Shaun in the Wallace and Gromit series, Shaun has a tail in the TV series.
Bitzer is the long-suffering sheepdog who keeps a watchful eye over his wayward flock. He only wants a quiet life, but this is the last thing he is going to get when Shaun is around. He has tolerant attitude to the sheep’s antics, but is ready to step in if things get seriously out of hand. And if there’s something in it for him, he’ll even join in some of Shaun’s crazy schemes – as long as the Farmer never finds out.
He behaves like a factory foreman, checking the sheep into the field on his clipboard and bringing a flask of tea and sandwiches to work. He often relieves the tedium of his job by listening to his walkman or doing the crossword, which gives Shaun ample opportunity to get up to mischief behind his back. Although Shaun is a source of constant exasperation, the relationship between them is essentially friendly. But ultimately Bitzer’s loyalty lies with the Farmer – he is not going to bite the hand that keeps him in dog food! Bitzer wishes that he could at least round the flock up without trouble but that never seems to happen!
A solitary and unremarkable figure, the Farmer tends to his small-holding with only the loyal Bitzer for assistance. He goes about his business with a dogged dependability, expressing little emotion except the occasional burst of frustration when things go wrong, or an air of bemusement at the result of some of Shaun’s antics. However, we get some clues to his inner life – he is enthusiastic about new technology and has a secret passion for drum and bass.
Like all the human characters in the series, we see him from the animals’ point of view and his speech comes across as a series of grunts and mumbles. He is unaware that his farmyard fold are anything other than normal animals – and Bitzer is determined to keep it that way; the Farmer must never find out what goes on when his back is turned.
For the most part, the flock are typical sheep – content to spend the day chewing the cud. But when Shaun gets an idea into his head, they are only too happy to follow where he leads. They are easily amused and even more easily influenced – they provide an enthusiastic audience for Shaun’s shenanigans, and willingly throw themselves into whatever plans he hatches. But equally they can be clumsy, cowardly and are none too bright – their incompetence all too often undermines Shaun’s more ambitious exploits.
While they are mainly a group of indistinguishable and undistinguished animals who usually act as one, there are a few more individualistic characters who stand out within the group:
Four times the size of any other member of the flock, Shirley has to be pushed from place to place and can eat just about anything that comes her way. She is also useful as a trampoline, a battering ram and her capacious fleece provides a hiding place for all manner of unlikely items.
Adorable but perhaps not as innocent as he looks, Timmy is a baby lamb who sucks a dummy and has an alarming propensity for getting into dangerous situations. He loves teddy bears and will cry if he is without them. He even likes pizza shown in two episode. He only has one tooth.
With curlers in her hair, Timmy’s mother displays a rather careless attitude towards maternal duties, leaving a lot of the work with Shaun. But when her little boy goes astray – as he frequently does – she is inconsolable until he is safely back in her arms.
The Naughty Pigs
Housed in a yard next to the sheep’s field, the Naughty Pigs are the bane of Shaun’s life. Mocking, cantankerous and greedy, they get no greater pleasure than disrupting Shaun’s schemes-though they are far too lazy to come up with any good ideas for themselves.
Appears at the start of the opening credits.
The Mother Hen
She and her annoyingly chirpy Chicks appear in Who’s The Mummy.
Appears in several episodes, including Off The Baa and Bath Time, and often suffers collateral damage as a result of Shaun’s exploits. As seen in Bitzer Puts His Foot In It, he has several other duck friends.
The goat is an unstoppable eating machine – while not an unfriendly character, all his considerable energy is focused on his next meal.
A short-tempered belligerent powerhouse, who is all too ready to see red at Shaun’s antics. He appears in The Bull and Heavy Metal Shaun. The bull gets angry at red items so when Shaun orders a red bed sheet, he stops chasing the other sheep (that have been painted red) around the farm.
A rude and annoying pest who appears in Mountains Out Of Molehills. He is fearless when mocking Shaun, but not so brave when his Mother Mole turns up.
A female dog belonging to some campers who pitch their tent next to the sheep’s field in Fetching. After a brief courtship, she and Bitzer are cruelly separated.
The Farmer’s Cat, an idle and selfish lout who can be remarkably quick and vicious when he wants to be. Doesn’t like sheep. Appears in Timmy In A Tizzy.
A rather non-descript frog that is found in the hat of the scarecrow, then later in the pocket when Shaun takes the coat, he is given as currency along with 3 buttons, a small comb and a kazoo in exchange for a number of pizzas. However he seems unwilling to become the pizza boy's pet.
Pizza Delivery Boy
A gormless teenager who rides a moped and works in the local pizzeria. Has also been seen moonlighting as a postman in Saturday Night Shaun.
The Farmer’s Niece
A sweet little cherub whose over-enthusiastic love of animals spells trouble for Shaun.
A liberal, nature-loving couple who appear in Shaun Shoots The Sheep.
A yobbish litterbug who sets up his tent in the sheep’s field in Camping Chaos.
Not a human character, more of a handy prop which Shaun makes use of in Take Away and Things That Go Bump.
An Extra-Terrestrial crash-lands his flying saucer in the sheep’s field in Alien. The sheep treat him like any other species, helping him return home.
In Shaun and the Aliens, we meet his pesky joy-riding off-spring and his wife.