AKA the court jester
|German title||AKA the court jester|
|original title||AKA the Jester|
|production country||United Kingdom|
|Cosgrove Hall Films|
|episodes||13 in 1 season ( list )|
|genre||Children's series , cartoon , fantasy|
|theme music||Alias the Jester by Keith Hopwood & Malcolm Rowe|
|directing||Chris Randall, John Hembley|
|production||Tony Garth, Chris Randall, Brian Trueman|
|music||Thomas Chase, Steve Rucker|
|first airing||13th November 1985 on the ITV Network|
|June 21, 1988 on Das Erste|
Alias the Jester is the name of a 1985 British children 's animated television series from 1985. It was produced by Cosgrove Hall Film Studios and first aired on 13 November 1985 on the ITV Network . In Germany , the series appeared in 1988 in the first and was then part of the children 's program Fun on Tuesday until 1991 . Alias der Hofjester is about a good-natured extraterrestrial who lands on earth in the middle ages of the 15th century and poses ascourt jester spends.
Alias der Hofjester comprises 13 episodes, each 10 minutes long, the original English titles have been retained without translation. It is not exactly known why the series was so relatively short. Alias the Court Jester largely parodies the famous Arthurian saga, including familiar dragon myths . But myths and legends from other peoples, such as the Vikings , are also taken up. The episode Amaranth and the Beast is a nod to the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast .
It tells the story of Alias , who has strayed too far from his home planet Zogma and is now wandering the galaxy in his capsule-shaped spaceship . He is accompanied by his loyal and clever pooch, Boswell . One day he comes too close to the Earth's magnetic field, whereupon the drive, controls and radio fail and Alias has to make an emergency landing on Earth. He discovers that he is in the middle ages of the 15th century and has landed in a kingdom called Houghton Bottoms . He meets the court magician Meredith , who immediately advises Alias not to show himself to the residents in his original form. He shouldn't flaunt his supernatural powers either, because in the 15th century that kind of thing was considered witchcraft and would result in severe penalties. So Alias disguises himself as a court jester. He introduces himself to the incumbent King Arthur and his wife Edith and actually finds a job at court. Alias quickly befriends the clever princess Amaranth and the clumsy but snooty knight Sir Pinkly .
Alias goes to great lengths to hide his true identity. He notices how clueless and awkward King Arthur's subjects are and wants to help them. When several villains show up and threaten the kingdom with all sorts of intrigues , war machines and monsters , Alias decides to intervene. He quickly changes into his original uniform , which grants him superpowers and the ability to fly, and braves the enemies. However, his exploits and adventures are regularly jeopardized by two specific weaknesses on Alias' part: first, he doesn't know what a joke is (which is detrimental to his charade as a court jester), and second, he overestimates the powers he needs to save what he can wanted to destroy himself (and it is not uncommon for the king's possessions to be destroyed). That's why he gets rid of the villains, but also regularly his job. His companion, the court wizard, is usually dismissed with him.
- Alias is the protagonist of the series and is an alien. He comes from a planet called Zogma. In his original form, he wears a bright red and gold skin-tight uniform heavily modeled after that of comic book hero The Flash . When wearing them, Alias can fly and move and lift objects that a normal human could never carry. His disguise is a classic red and green plaid patchwork dress ("court jester costume") with a jester 's cap .
- Boswell is Alias' faithful companion in the form of a small, light green puppy with a purple nose and golden wings instead of ears. Boswell is very smart and observant. His trademark is his language, which consists of cute squeaks and horns, but which Alias always understands.
- King Arthur is the reigning regent of Houghton Bottom and a parody of the mythical character King Arthur. The series Arthur is clumsy, naive and short-tempered, but still in bondage to his wife. A running joke of the series is that Arthur suffers a fit of rage at the end of each episode and Alias is dismissed without notice ("Court jester? You're fired!").
- Meredith is the court wizard and a clear reference to the fabled wizard Merlin . Meredith is tall, lanky, with long, white-grey hair and a slight limp. When Alias makes an emergency landing with his spaceship, he is still wearing his red uniform and Meredith mistakes him for a legendary red knight that he actually wanted to summon. Throughout the series, Alias fails to convince Meredith of his error.
- The Vikings are a group of brutish Vikings with Erik the Stupid as their leader. Alias encounters them in at least two episodes ( The Viking Airship and Monster of the Lake ), in which the Vikings appear as brutalized, uncultured, and violent savages with horned helmets, thick beards, and (at least in the original English version) dialect -laden speech. Both times they try to kidnap the Princess Amaranth and Alias is successful in driving off the Vikings and freeing the Princess.
|No.||German title||original title||First release UK||German-language first publication (D)|
|1||AKA the Jester||AKA the Jester||11/13/1985||06/21/1988|
|2||the rings||the rings||11/20/1985||06/21/1988|
|3||The Amazing Dancing Bear||The Amazing Dancing Bear||11/27/1985||06/28/1988|
|4||The Viking Airship||The Viking Airship||12/04/1985||06/28/1988|
|5||Ready When You Are, King Arthur!||Ready When You Are, King Arthur!||12/11/1985||07/05/1988|
|6||The Giant's Visit||The Giant's Visit||12/18/1985||07/05/1988|
|7||The Walking Island||The Walking Island||01/10/1986||07/12/1988|
|8th||Monsters of the Lake||Monsters of the Lake||01/17/1986||07/12/1988|
|9||Magic Metal||Magic Metal||01/24/1986||07/19/1988|
|10||The Lost Ark||The Lost Ark||01/31/1986||07/19/1988|
|11||Revenge of the Najjer||Revenge of the Najjer||02/06/1986||07/26/1988|
|12||Fiery Fred||Fiery Fred||02/13/1986||07/26/1988|
|13||Amaranth and the Beast||Amaranth and the Beast||02/20/1986||08/02/1988|
music and dubbing
The lead singer of the original Alias the Jester theme song , Keith Hopwood, was the guitarist and backing vocalist for the hugely popular UK beat band Herman's Hermits . The following are named as German voice actors: Ekkehardt Belle , Klaus Höhne , Benno Hoffmann , Anita Höfer , Jochen Busse and Michaele Amler. However, the credits do not reveal who spoke whose role, and the singers of the German-language title song are not mentioned either.
awards and media
In 1986, the series won the British Academy Television Award in the Short Animation category . The series was also published in 1986 as a 4-volume book series and as a coloring book . Alias the Jester was released in English on VHS that same year and on DVD in March 2006 .
- Kevin J. Harty: The Vikings on Film: Essays on Depictions of the Nordic Middle Ages . McFarland, Jefferson 2011, ISBN 9780786486380 .
- Michael N. Salda: Arthurian Animation: A Study of Cartoon Camelots on Film and Television . McFarland, Jefferson 2013, ISBN 9780786474684 .
- Alias the Court Jester at theMovie Database
- Alias the court jester at Fernsehserien.de
- Alias The Court Jester on televisionheaven.co.uk
- Alias the Jester. In: Toonhound. Retrieved December 18, 2021 (English).
- cf. the ARD episode list, which lists the episode titles untranslated.
- Michael N. Salda: Arthurian Animation… , 2013, pp. 104 & 158.
- Kevin J. Harty: The Vikings on Film… , 2011, p. 188.
- Mentioned on televisionheaven.co.uk (English)
- cf. the full episode 8 on YouTube . The name of the episode was translated here by YouTube in the video title, but the episode shows the original English title. The names of the German voice actors are listed in the credits.
- BAFTA, Television in 1986. British Academy of Film and Television Arts, accessed 18 December 2021 .
- Brian Trueman: Alias the jester, Vols. 1-4 . Macdonald Purnell, London 1986, ISBN 9780361071277 .
- Brian Trueman: AKA The Jester Coloring Book . Macdonald Purnell, London 1986, ISBN 9780361071833 .
- Alias the Jester on VHS at video-collection-international.fandom.com
- Alias the Jester Episode Collection on DVD at toonhound.com