Tifou (partially found Belgian puppet series and French animated adaptation; 1988; 1990)
A screenshot of the animated series' intro sequence.
Status: Lost (Belgian puppet series)
Partially Found (French animated seres)
Existence Unconfirmed (English dub of French animated series)
Tifou was a Belgian puppet series that was co-produced by Zinzin Production, GPA, and Bonecos that aired in both Belgium and France in 1988 for 26 episodes, mainly through Antenne 2 in the latter country. The show is known to have been created and produced by André Franquin, who is mostly known for being the creator of the very popular Belgian comic book character, Marsupilami.
The Tifous are three little hairy characters who discover the world that they live in. The green Tifou is the poet of the trio, the pink with glasses is the most reasoned and the red is the craziest of the crew who never ceases to be agitated wherever he goes. Together, they wonder about the objects they will have at their disposal, about the elements of nature and particularly insects. In the original Belgian puppet series, the trio doesn't talk but instead makes weird noises and stilted expressions, which made it hard to understand what was going on throughout the show's short run, hurt even more by the fact that each episode was only 3 minutes in length.
French Animated Adaptation
In 1990, a French animated adaptation would air on FR3 during the Sam'Dynamite block. This adaptation would have the episodes be 5 minutes instead of the original 3 minutes as well as triple the number of episodes in comparison. It was produced by Odec Kid Cartoons with animation outsourced to Fenix Animation. It is notable for being the final cartoon to have been produced by Odec Kid Cartoons as well as the only cartoon to be animated by Fenix Animation. A few changes were made, such as giving the main trio the ability to talk with distinct voices to differentiate them further from one another and the setting is changed from random parts of the world to the Tifou country, which is delimited by the Tumultuous River and is populated with many other Tifous, similar to that of The Smurfs.
Also in the Tifou country lives the sad bird which is sad for just about everything and anything, including several very different trees: the major tree, the advisory tree, the jam tree, alongside several others encountered throughout the series. On the other side of the Tumultuous River, lies the desert where Betnoir lives. This one hates the vegetation as well as the Tifou and he would like to destroy the Tifou country. For that he asks for advice from Soul Damned, a hairy ball that he calls by an incantation; the latter always mistaking his name, sometimes calling him Peignoir, Pied Noir, Bonsoir, Versoir, etc. Unfortunately for Betnoir all his undertakings always end in bitter failure because our three heroes have more than one trick up their sleeve to put his evildoings to a halt.
English Dub of French Animated Adaptation
According to a reply from a YouTube user named Kids Time With Aunty Anne, an English dub of the animated series aired in Zimbabwe on ZTV from the mid-1990s to early 2000s. Other than the one reply, no other information surrounding the dub has ever surfaced and no footage or audio of it has surfaced either.
Outside of the English dub, only screenshots and a supposed finding of a short clip of the intro sequence currently survive for the original puppet series. The French animated series is partially found as out of 78 episodes known to have been produced, only 12 of them have surfaced online. Not much information is known about the history behind these shows nor airtimes, though it is said to have seen reruns through FR3's C'est Lulo block in 1992, Canal J in 1993 and TF1's A Tout' Spip block for one day on January 11th of 1995.
List of Episodes From Puppet Series
|1||Le Pays Des Merveilles||Lost|
|2||Dans les Nuages||Lost|
|7||Crise De Croissance||Lost|
|10||Album De Famille||Lost|
List of Episodes from Animated Series
NOTE: While the animated series is said to have had 78 episodes on Planete Jeunesse, the lack of reliable information surrounding either series on the internet makes it very difficult to confirm this. This is why the episodes are labeled with question marks instead of numbers.
|#||Episode Title||Status (French)||Status (English)|
|??||L'âme damnée de Bêtnoir||Existence Unconfirmed||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||La Grande Course||Existence Unconfirmed||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||Ardents, Les Charbons||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||Bêtnoir Entre En Scène||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||Le Gâteau D'anniversaire||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||L'étoile Félante||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||Le Voleur De Cuberdons||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||Le Cirque De L'oiseau Triste||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||Le Screpte De Neptune||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||La Tristesse De L'arbre à Conseils||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||L'ennui De L'arbre à Confiture||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||La Boîte à Musique||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||Bêtnoir a Tout Faux||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||La faux Par Défaut||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
|??||La Suie De Bêtnoir||Found||Existence Unconfirmed|
- The Planete Jeunesse article on the 1988 puppet series. Retrieved 07 Dec '21
- The Planete Jeunesse article on the 1990 animated series. Retrieved 07 Dec '21