Teletubbies was a BBC children's television series targeted at pre-school viewers and produced from 1997 to 2001 by Ragdoll Productions. It was created by Ragdoll's creative director Anne Wood CBE and Andrew Davenport, who wrote each of the show's 365 episodes. The program's original narrator was Tim Whitnall. Teletubbies first aired on 31 March 1997, was syndicated in the United States on the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) public television on 6 April 1998 and aired until 19 June 2005. In 2001 production was canceled and it was announced that no new episodes would be produced, with the last episode being aired on 5 January 2001. However, a total of 365 episodes had been produced – enough for a full year. The series was one of four PBS shows to be taken off its regular airing, the other shows being Boohbah (in 2005), Reading Rainbow (in 2006) and Mister Rogers Neighborhood (in 2008).
Teletubbies, particularly notable for its high production values, rapidly became a critical and commercial success in Britain and abroad and won a BAFTA in 1998.Teletubbies Everywhere was awarded "Best Pre-school Live Action Series" at the 2002 Children's BAFTA Awards.
The program revolves around the adventures of Teletubbies, fictional humanoid beings whose bodies are fairly round and pudgy and covered in a bright solid-color fleece-like fur, all but their large-eyed childlike faces. Teletubbies have in the center of their belly a television monitor that they receive video messages on, and on their head they have a single antenna. Tinky Winky is purple, Dipsy is green, Laa-Laa is yellow, and Po is red. In the show, the four colourful Teletubbies play in the cheerful and fun Teletubbyland. They do things that little children like to do, such as rolling on the grass, laughing, running about, and watching real children on the televisions on their bellies. Mysterious pinwheels and a speaker rise out of the meadow to announce the days' activities. The sun, which is superimposed of live-action video of a smiling, giggling baby's face, occasionally responds to the antics of the main characters. It also rises and sets to begin and end the show.
Although the program is aimed at children between the ages of one and four, it had a substantial cult following with older generations, mainly university and college students. The mixture of bright colours, unusual designs, repetitive non-verbal dialogue, ritualistic format, and the occasional forays into physical comedy appealed to a demographic who perceived the program as having psychedelic qualities. Teletubbies was controversial for this reason. Other critics felt the show was insufficiently educational.
The program was also at the centre of a controversy when American cleric and conservative pundit Jerry Falwell claimed in 1999 that Tinky Winky, one of the Teletubbies, was a homosexual role model for children. Falwell based this conclusion on the character's purple colour and triangular antenna; both the colour purple and the triangle are sometimes used as symbols of the Gay Pride movement. It was also noted that Tinky Winky often carried a red handbag. However, despite an ensuing boycott,[clarification needed] the program remained in production for two more years. 'Teletubbies say "Eh-oh!"', a single based on the show's theme song, reached number 1 in the UK Singles Chart in December 1997 and remained in the Top 75 for 32 weeks, selling over a million copies.
TELETUBBIES SPECIAL 3 IN 1 COLLECTION