Did Count Duckula herald the modern Star Wars Day?

May 4th Count Duckula

Whilst enjoying “Star Wars Day 2014” I fell upon a strange fact – the play on words that is “May the fourth be with you” isn’t a modern internet-led phenomenon as I’ve always believed but was in fact coined a long long time ago in a… oh, sorry, caught in the mood.

In 1988, in an episode of Count Duckula called “The Vampire Strikes Back”, a character called Tremendous Terrence has the following exchange with the Count:

Tremendous Terrence: What’s the date today?
Count Duckula: Er, the date, it’s, er… May the 4th.
Tremendous Terrence: Why, then, May the 4th be with you!

You can catch this Star Wars moment in this short clip:

However, the phrase was coined much earlier than that thanks to the British Conservative political party who, on May 4th 1979 took out a newspaper advert that read “May the 4th Be With You, Maggie. Congratulations.” when the Iron Lady was elected prime minister!

Danger Mouse: Duckula Meets Frankenstoat (1986)

danger_mouse_movie_poster
Good morning! Feel like watching a bit of classic animated BBC programing? We’ve got the third episode from season 7 of Danger Mouse entitled “Duckula Meets Frankenstoat” which was originally aired on the November 27, 1986.

In this episode the famed secret agent Danger Mouse and his cowardly ally Penfold must face wits against that dastardly Count Duckula and a crazed Doctor Frankenstoat!

Mark Hall (1937 – 2011): Co-Creator Of Danger Mouse


Sad news this morning. Mark Hall who was the Co-Creator of Danger Mouse and Count Duckula (Seen between the two characters up above) has passed away at 74, due to cancer.

Along with his fellow producer, Brian Cosgrove, the two created Chorlton & The Wheelies a stop-motion BBC television series that dealt with a Dragon of Happiness named Chorlton that befriended the Wheelies and aided them in fighting the evil Fenella, the kettle witch.

It was however in 1981 that the animation company then known as Cosgrove Hall created one of the greatest animated series of all time, Danger Mouse. It ran for a total of 89 episodes over 11 years. We here in the states of course were introduced to that eyepatch wearing Mouse of Danger and his cowardly sidekick Penfold thanks to Nickelodeon.

The Danger Mouse series was a hit in England as well as here in the states due to its metahumor and that popularity led to the spin off series, Count Duckula.

Thank you to The A.V. Club for the heads up on this sad story and to the Manchester Evening News for the photo up top. Thanks also go to Andie6666, Mega Toon World, and Cartoon Intro for the animated openings posted on YouTube.