HISTORY TIDBIT: THE FRIENDLY GIANT

“Look up, look wa-a-ay up …”

From 1958 to 1985 (and beyond, in re-runs), children in Canada did just that, happy to curl up in a chair at the fireside of a medieval giant named ‘Friendly’(Bob Homme) and watch the giant’s interaction with a giraffe named Jerome and a rooster named Rusty (voiced by puppeteer, Rod Coneybare). The greatest attraction of the over 3,000 episodes was probably their low key predictability. The drawbridge went down to welcome viewers ‘in’ and closed as they were ‘leaving’, watching the cow jump over the moon as they went. In the course of the fifteen-minute programme, pleasantries would be exchanged, music would be played, a story read, and feelings of well-being projected. Despite the show’s ongoing popularity, deep budget cuts to the CBC led to its demise.

With one exception (below), ‘The Giant’ never made public appearances, thinking it would confuse young fans to see an ordinary person instead of a giant.

http://www.cbc.ca/archives/entry/1982-friendly-giant-bob-homme-steps-out-of-costume

To view the show’s beginning and end segments, visit:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WV2P6P4p6Hg

And if your kids would like to watch an episode:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NvMVQ_DgEJY

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