Fabulous Films will release a Blu-ray and DVD edition of the classic animated series Roobarb.
The series was created by Grange Calveley, and first broadcast on BBC One in 1974. It was narrated by actor Richard Briars (The Good Life) and featured music from Johnny Hawksworth. 30 five minute episodes were made. The “Roobarb” of the title is a dog, greenish in colour, with a counterpart pink feline called “Custard”.
A revival series, Roobarb and Custard Too, debuted on Channel 5 in 2005. Richard Briars returned as narrator, with Jon Atkinson composing the theme. This version ran for 39 episodes.
The world of Roobarb has a distinct appearance, as the animators used a particular drawing technique known as “boiling”. This makes the images look like they are constantly almost pulsating, adding a lot of life and energy to the images.
Roobarb is remarkable in that it was the first fully animated series ever made in the UK. It was one of a group of programming made for children in the 1970s which appealed to adults as well as its original target audience, in part due to their use of language to create humour.
The box set from Fabulous Films will feature both series. There will also be special features, but these are still to be confirmed. Episodes have been restored from their original negatives, meaning the highest possible quality for an HD transfer.
This news follows Fabulous Films’ recent foray into restoring and releasing classic British children’s TV titles. Previous releases have included full HD releases of Bagpuss, The Clangers and the Trumptonshire Trilogy. The 70s series of Paddington Bear and The Wombles are to follow at some point in the future.
Roobarb is available to pre-order from Fabulous Films. It will be released on the 19th of February 2024