and growing up in the 80's

You can (and will) hear it from every generation. It was all better, nicer and tastier when they were growing up. Well, in my case it really was! Born in '76, growing up with late 70's but primarily 80's music that filled our living room on a daily basis. And I am not talking about Bros, Rick Astley and that gang (although they had some flair!), but The Cure, OMD, Kraftwerk, Yaz en come on Joy Division. What about U2 with The Joshua Tree, Rattle and Hum and Anton Corbijn's pictures? However, what really stood out during my childhood, were my sunday morning cartoon moments. After a bath, my brother, sisters and myself got comfortable on the couch and waited for mum to put on the TV set. One animated cartoon in particular...Krtek, or as I knew it back then: Pauli, der Maulwurf broadcasted on a German channel during Die Sendung mit der Maus, got me all excited.


Krtek..and his friends


Later I found out Krtek was a creation of Zdeněk Miler, not just A, but THE animator from Czechoslovakia, as it was still called back then. Now having 2 boys of my own, they just love Krtek above all the other cartoons on television and especially all the Studio100 creations...thank God for that! Unfortunately you will only find some of the 44 short cartoons and some excerpts of the 6 films of Krtek on Youtube. But with a little bit of googling and determination you will find dvd's and can even contact the Czech studio in Prague, Kratky Film Praha to get a personal collection on least until last year.
The rights on Krtek were shifted from one end to the other. Apple Inc. decided that it was time to help the little mole enter the US toy-market with a staggering budget of $ 21 billion!! The creator Miler's goal was to educate children in communist Europe and it looks like that is what's needed in the US now too, educate children. His first and only narrated Krtek film from 1956 was about the making of a pair of trousers and explained the whole process from gathering flax to stitching the actual trousers (in all the others, Miler only uses verbal noises to show emotion in Krtek and his friends which he got from his daughters). Because no character says anything more than Hallo, music plays an important role in the cartoons. Lovely and fresh tunes making the wake up period these days so much more fun.


Bye, bye and thanks again


In 2011 a plush toy of Krtek was present on board of the Endeavor Space Shuttle where it accompanied the U.S. astronaut Andrew Feustelt, whose wife is of Czech ancestry. Later that year, in november, the great Zdeněk Miler died at the age of 90. His obituary said it all..