Tabaluga (TV series)

Tabaluga (1996-2004) is an animated television series produced by Flying Bark Productions (previously known as "Yoram Gross Films Studio" and "Yoram Gross-EM.TV"), based on the character of the same name created by Peter Maffay. In this series, Tabaluga is the last of the dragons and the crown-prince of Greenland, a magical place inhabited by talking animals of many different species. Tabaluga must defend his home from two rival kingdoms on either side of Greenland; a frigid arctic tundra, ruled by the evil snowman Arktos and a searing desert, ruled by an evil sand-spirit named Humsin.

Tabaluga
Title card
GenreCartoon series
Created byPeter Maffay
Gregor Rottschalk
Rolf Zuckowski
Directed byYoram Gross (Season 1–2)
David Evans (Season 3)
Voices ofSarah Aubrey
Robyn Moore
Jamie Oxenbould
Troy Planet
Keith Scott
Shane Withington
Theme music composerChris Thompson
Opening theme"Tabaluga's Song", performed by Peter Rudolph Heinen
Ending theme"Nessaja's Song", composed by Peter Maffay
Composer(s)Peter Wagner (Season 1–2)
Andy Sedlmaier (Season 1–2)
Clive Harrison (Season 3)
Guy Gross (Tabaluga and Leo)
Country of originGermany
Australia
Original language(s)German
English
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes78
Production
Executive producer(s)Sandra Gross (Season 1)
Tim Brooke-Hunt (Season 1)
Dr. Sylvia Rothblum (Season 2)
Matthias Schulze (Season 3)
Hans-Jürgen Steimer (Season 3)
Geoff Watson (Season 3)
Producer(s)Yoram Gross (Season 1–2)
Franziska Guderian (Season 3)
Andre Kussmaul (Season 3)
Anke Steinbacher (Season 3)
Rodney Whitham (Season 3)
Editor(s)Antonietta Sisinni (Season 1)
Andrew MacNeil (Season 1)
Christopher Plowright (Season 1)
Roger Grant (Season 2)
Dee Liebenberg (Season 2)
David Stiven (Season 2)
Running time22 minutes
Production company(s)ZDF
Yoram Gross Film Studio (Season 1)
Yoram Gross-EM.TV (Season 2–3)
Release
Original release1996 
2004

Plot

The series focusses on Tabaluga, the last dragon living in Greenland, a land occupied by intelligent, talking animals. As a dragon he is tasked with defending Greenland against the evil snowman Arktos and the desert spirit Humsin.

Characters

Residents of Greenland

  • Tabaluga: A small green dragon who is the main protagonist of the series. He is the prince (and later the king) of Greenland. Son of the late Tyrion. Voiced by Jamie Oxenbould. In Germany he is voiced by Björn Schalla in Season 1 and Dietmar Wunder in Seasons 2 and 3.
  • Happy: A Snow hare who lives in Greenland and is one of Tabaluga's best friends. Voiced by Robyn Moore, and by Sabine Manke in German.
  • Digby: A mole from Greenland who wears glasses and one of Tabaluga's good friends. In Germany he is voiced by Edeltraud Esner in Seasons 1 and 2 and by Santiago Ziesmer in Season 3.
  • Nessaja: A giant turtle who acts as a mentor and advisor to Tabaluga. Voiced by Inken Sommer in German.
  • Buzz: A bee and one of Tabaluga's good friends.
  • Bilingua: A snake and a minor villain. She had shown in at least one episode (Queen for One Day) that she had the power of hypnosis.
  • Shouhu: An owl, who has a magic crystal ball. He is a prisoner to Arktos for his foresight. After his release, he helps advise the young dragon alongside Nessaja.
  • Tyrion: The previous ruler of Greenland and father of Tabaluga. When he died, he turned into a star, like all dragons. He occasionally appears to Tabaluga in spirit form to offer him some advice.
  • Ruby: A hummingbird and a best friend of Buzz and Digby.

Iceworld

  • Arktos: The main antagonist and Tabaluga's arch-enemy. He is an evil snowman who aims to make Greenland a frozen wasteland. He is also the king of Iceworld. He has a hall containing animals who have been frozen by him, and is fond of ice cream. Despite his hatred for Tabaluga, he has sometimes teamed up with him when the situation called for it. Voiced by Keith Scott in English and Frank Ciazynski in German.
  • James: The polite and gentle penguin who serves Arktos and pilots his master's transport, The Arktoplane. When the penguins of Iceworld temporarily left the evil snowman, James was the only one who remained at his side. In Germany he is voiced by Eberhard Prüter.
  • Attila the Walrus: Arktos' cook.
  • Vultur: A reconnaissance spy and messenger for Arktos, but then changed allegiance to Humsin. Afterwards he turns back to Arktos.
  • Fritz: Arktos' pet shark, who often tries to eat his carrot nose.
  • Lilly (or Lilli): A sculpture created by Arktos. When Tabaluga saw Lilly for the first time, he immediately had a strange but wonderful emotion he couldn't explain to himself - all he could think or dream about was Lilly.
  • Queen Isadora: An Ice Fairy who has been waiting for a snowman for years. She was later defeated by the Good Queen in the episode, "Arktos' Last Grasp".
  • Polar Bears

Desert Realm

  • Humsin: Tabaluga's second arch-enemy. He is the ruler of the desert realm, willing to make Greenland into a desert. At times, he and Arktos find themselves at odds. Much like Arktos is fond of ice cream, Humsin is fond of salty potato chips. He appears as a whirlwind of sand. He only appeared in season 2.
  • Kayo: An accident prone Chameleon who worked for Humsin, but later works for Arktos. Voiced by Troy Planet.
  • Hyena: A Spotted Hyena who has a tendency to laugh at Kayo's misfortunes and other things that aren't funny.
  • Ostrich: An accountant and a female ostrich. Worker for Humsin.
  • Sally: A female salamander and the leader of the Tribe of Salamanders. She only appeared in the episode, "The Lost Dragon."

Episodes

Season 1 (1996)

# Title Summary Air Date
1The Last of His KindAs Arktos spoils Greenland's tranquility, Digby stumbles on an egg, out of which hatches the last dragon Tabaluga. Tabaluga escapes Arktos, then learns of his destiny.
2Happy Without EndingTabaluga tumbles into the Iceworld and releases his newfound friend Happy, and they escape and rescue a defecting Fox Dandy, who leads them to Greenland.
3A Very Hot ThingVultur starts a fire in the Greenland forest, forcing the inhabitants to evacuate to safe haven. All the birds and bees fan the fire and then Arktos extinguishes it.
4Servant of Two MastersVultur takes Digby to Iceworld. The Greenlanders create a diversion, while Tabaluga and Happy rescue Digby along with some others, learning Shouhu's purpose in addition.
5Dubious DealingsA worry arouses in Greenland when night is longer than normal. Arktos takes advantage of this, but Tabaluga catches wind of Arktos' deception and reveals the darkness was an eclipse.
6One Dragon Too ManyArktos sends a flying dragon lizard to impersonate Tabaluga and stir things up in Greenland. Tabaluga outdoes the imposter when he rescues Happy and helps him to fit in.
7The Wiser Head Does Not Give UpArktos has developed a new weapon to spread his ice. Tabaluga has a dilemma to prepare for the worst, but decides to give himself up in order to infiltrate Ice Town and put the new weapon out of action.
8Two Birds With One StoneTabaluga volunteers to rescue Queen Elisabeth XXI's ant army from the clutches of Arktos. Tabaluga infiltrates Ice Town with unexpected help from Happy and forces Arktos to release the ants.
9MoonstruckTabaluga is intrigued to go to the moon. Arktos' offer to bring him there proves to be an attempt to dispose of him. In an unconscious dream, Tabaluga learns plenty about the moon.
10Dragons Do not CryTabaluga and Happy and Arktos are enjoying themselves. But a new kind of fruit Happy and Arktos ate has poisoned them. With effort Tabaluga provides a cure for Happy then passes it on to Arktos.
11The Big CloudArktos unleashes a volley of ice clouds to blot out the sun. With help from Prince Ighor, Tabaluga persuades the volcano ant queen to erupt the volcano. It works, but only too well.
12The Visitors Who Came In From The ColdArktos' penguins are going on strike except for James. While Tabaluga helps the penguins last in Greenland, Iceland falls into disarray. Eventually Arkto's persuades the penguins to return and makes it up to them.
13A Fatal PresentArktos sends a plague of locusts to Greenland. With all options failing, Tabaluga beseeches the help of the giant Black Widow spider Tarantula. Her siren song works, with all Greenlanders evading it.
14A Ruined PremiereTo stifle his boredom, Arktos sends James to capture some dolphins for a circus. With the aid of Sawbones the swordfish, Tabaluga and his friends intercept and rescue the dolphins.
15A Matter Full of SeedsThere is a shortage of sunflower seeds for Tabaluga thanks to James' harvest. Tabaluga slips into Ice Town to get back some seeds to enjoy in future.
16Someone Is CheatingGreenland is holding a sports tournament. Arktos plans to use this tournament to win the land as his own. The Greenlanders win the tournament, thanks to Maurice, a polar whom Arktos outcast.
17Mister Nice GuyAfter increased attacks on Greenland, Arktos sends James as a clown to steal some fruit. His heist fails, but the Greenlanders lend him a hand, while Tabaluga spreads cheer and happiness in Iceworld.
18Too Much Salt Is Detrimental To The HealthJames builds a dam to get water for ice-cream production. The dam causes a lot of flooding and is contaminated by a salt mine. The beavers manage to destroy the dam and restore the river.
19The Tree Of LifeArktos is intent on destroying the Tree of Life, disregarding the consequences of Water cycle imbalance. Tabaluga manages to defrost the Tree of Life and save both Greenland and Iceworld.
20A Splendid CoupleToday is Happy's Birthday. Arktos sends a snow hare Leon, to befriend Happy, which makes Tabaluga feel lonesome. Both hares and Tabaluga make up, getting captured by Arktos, but the trio make their escape.
21A Fiery EncounterTabaluga meets the wild honey bees and learns about their ways of living. Arktos sends James to raid the hive for honey. Tabaluga helps the bees repel the next raid and sends James off.
22Tabaluga and LilliTabaluga is captivated by Arktos' beautiful girl statue, he calls Lilli, which is haunting him with passion. Happy helps Tabaluga through his dangerous ordeal. Tabaluga manages to bring Lilli to life with his fire, and Tabaluga and Lilli fulfill their love for each other.
23The Abducted ScampJames takes Happy's bullying cousin Bobby to Ice Town for Arktos' gallery. Bobby is as troublesome to Arktos as he was back in Greenland, so Vultur persuades the Greenlanders to take him back.
24The Flow of TimeTabaluga sees a past vision in the River of Time, but has to take care of a river blockage would spell eternal time freeze for the Greenlanders. After that Shouhu finally has his freedom.
25Queen For One Day
26Chocolate Ice for EverybodyArktos gains the power to spread an early winter to Greenland. With the aid of the giant octopus Tentaculus, Tabaluga brings Arktos to his knees and brings Iceworld and Greenland together.

Season 2 (2002)

# Title Summary Air Date
1Prince TabalugaAfter Tabaluga's coronation, Arktos starts up an ice-cream factory in hopes of overshadowing the new prince. However his business is clearfelling the forests, forcing Tabaluga to rescue everyone from a landslide.
2HumsinHumsin takes advantage of the homeless Greenlanders and spreads a desert in Greenland and Vultur defects to Humsin. Arktos attacks Humsin and the Iceworlders assist Greenland to put Humsin's sand pipeline out of action.
3Dangerous confidenceHumsin attacks Greenland with a sand blaster. Arktos nabs the spying Vultur, leaving Tabaluga in a difficult position to save Vultur's life. Arktos uses this opportunity to become Prince, but Vultur exposes his treachery.
4Big FreezeArktos makes an early winter in Greenland, but the Greenlanders prepare for it. Then Arktos collaborates with Humsin to attack Greenland, but Vultur warns Tabaluga, giving him a chance to repel the attack.
5ProphecyKayo steals Shouhu's crystal ball to give Humsin some advantage. Artkos leaves thinking he has no future, but James renews his hope. Tabaluga boosts Greenland's morale to thwart Humsin's attack.
6Digby, The HeroHumsin tricks Tabaluga with mirages, giving him the moment to cast a sandstorm over Greenland. Digby feeling discontented with himself rescues Tabaluga the helps him to make rain to wash away Humsin's sand.
7Potato FestivalThe Greenlanders are hard at harvesting potatoes. Humsin capitalises Greenland of its potato supply. Tabaluga tricks Arktos to start an early winter day to drive Humsin and his lot out of Greenland.
8A Spiny DangerDigby becomes Shouhou's apprentice. A folly in the works, turns Digby into a weremole monster. Digby procures the vital ingredient to cure himself, while Arktos and Humsin fight for the Shouhou's power potion.
9FloodDuring the Spring Festival, Arktos unleashes some rain showers to flood Greenland. As Happy and some baby animals take shelter, Tabaluga stops Arktos' flooding then tricks Humsin into removing the floodwaters.
10The Day of the CactusHumsim uses Happy's new growth formula with a cactus to spoil Greenland. Arktos tries to take advantage of the situation, but Tabaluga persuades him to freeze the plant. Tabaluga proceeds to prevent Humsin grow any more weeds.
11The Big ChangeHumsin captures Nassaja and Shohou, while Tabaluga develops an itching problem mistaken as contagious. Tabaluga is helped by the Outcast colony to save Greenland from Humsin and Arktos.
12Sand FleasHumsin unleashes a plague of sand fleas to put the Greenlanders in disarray. Tabaluga eventually finds that volcanic water eliminates the fleas, but Buzz provides an alternative.
13The Lost DragonHumsin plans to capture more lizards for his secret weapon. Tabaluga gets helped by a tribe of Salamanders led by Sally to liberate them from Humsin and prevents Arktos from taking Greenland as its new prince.
14My baby
15The Ice Beast
16Double Trouble
17Peace Play
18Genie
19KidnappedJames' nephews and nieces come to visit, but they soon go missing.
20Sweet Dreams Hamsin
21The Thundwerbird
22Bully for You
23The Scrying Game
24Dragon Mountain
25The Sands of Doom
26Majority Rules

Season 3 (2004)

# Title Summary Air Date
1The Dragon PendantOn a new spring season, Tabaluga starts his quest for the dragon pendant. Knowing about it from Kayo, Arktos plans to get the pendant first. Tabaluga narrowly manages to finish the first stage of his quest.
2The QuestVultur returns to Arktos' service. As Tabaluga starts his quest, Arktos freezes Greenland, but Happy and Digby bring Tabaluga back to send Arktos back before taking Happy and Digby on his quest.
3Scary StoryArktos follows Tabaluga, Happy and Digby on their quest. During a campout strange noises scare Arktos, Tabaluga and their friends as they run into each other. They eventually find Kayo and a woodmouse are the unwitting monsters.
4Tabaluga's ChallengeDuring an invitation to Ling Yan's village, Tabaluga is prompted to race Ling Yan, but then they have to rescue panda twin boys from the river. With that Tabaluga and his friends continue the quest.
5Fire StoneTabaluga and his friends enter an underground land inhabited by fiery people, who do not approve of the Fire Sign being taken, until Tabaluga replaces it to save the land from destruction.
6Little WonderHappy accidentally shrinks Tabaluga with one of Shouhou's potions. Kayo gets that potion and shrinks James and Arktos, but the shrinking effects eventually wear off.
7Arktos The GoodHoping to get information on Tabaluga's leave, Arktos tries to be nice for Nessaja's birthday party, managing unwittingly. Later though Kayo and a giant snake crash the party, but the party proceeds.
8The Gloomy ForestTagaluga, Happy and Digby enter the Gloomy Forest in order to reach the Valley of the Winds, Arktos and James following. Tabaluga helps the lonesome living trees find company and save them from Arktos.
9Mother ArktosDigby stumbles across an egg, but later James steals it. The egg hatches a crocodile and Arktos plays with it, while Tabaluga is faced with its mother's wrath, but he is able to unite the baby and mother together.
10Eye in the SkyDuring a visit to Warren Vale, Happy and James are taken by Tempest. Arktos helps Tabaluga to ascend the mountain. Tabaluga saves the prisoners and Warren Vale, acquires the wind sign and unmasks Tempest as the rabbit Robert.
11Do not Forget to RememberTabaluga suffers a case of amnesia and Arktos takes him for a servant called Norman. Eventually Tabaluga finds out about Arktos' deceit and gets the memory cure from Shouhou.
12Fool's GoldAn earthquake opens a fault. Down inside Tabaluga, Happy and Digby befriend Roly the Troll. Roly loses his treasure after Arktos fails to take it, but Roly becomes a friend to Greenland.
13Where is Winter?Arktos is terminally ill, so Tabaluga travels via the river of time to the past to get a Pjorus Flower. He is hindered by a younger Arktos, but the younger Tyrion helps him.
14Whale of a TaleTabaluga travels with Happy and Digby by ship out to sea. They team up with an orca named Haratio to liberate his family from pirates in league with Arktos.
15Last Gasp
16Troubled Waters
17Hidden Treasures
18Wish Upon a Star
19Who's Who
20The Hidden Chamber
21Ready, Set, Go!
22Digby's Promise
23Kayo: Friend or Foe?
24Menace in the Mountains
25Dragon World
26Lost Pendant

Animated movie

Following the conclusion of the third season in 2004, a Christmas cartoon film, "Tabaluga und Leo" (engl. "Tabaluga and Leo"), based on the TV cartoon series aired in 2005, serving a sequel to the animated series.

It is a celebration of Greenland Day for Greenland and Christmas Eve for humans. An orphaned boy named Leo who is having no luck getting a foster family decides to run away and enters a portal into Iceworld. During a search for some mountain roses to complete the Greenland festival, Tabaluga rescues Leo from Arktos and takes him to join the festival. Arktos and James intensify Leo's clumsiness in order to swipe his toy to develop a new automated weapon. The damage Leo caused to a green crystal forces Tabaluga to go on an urgent quest for a new one, Leo by his side. When Tabaulga procures the new green crystal, Arktos kidnaps Leo to complete the essential part of his new weapon. Tabaluga slips into Ice Town, rescues Leo and returns in time to save the Greenland festival. Arktos launches his new automated weapon on Greenland, but Tabaluga and Leo repel it. Finally Tabaluga persuades Leo to go back to his world and join his new foster parents.

Broadcast history

The cartoon series of Tabaluga originally shown on ZDF in Germany is presently being shown in the UK on the following channels:

CountryChannel(s)
Germany
UK
Iran
Ireland
Poland
  • TVP1 (1997–2004)
  • Mini Mini (2006–present)
Portugal
USA
Romania
Czech Republic
France
Russia
Ukraine
  • ТЕТ
Finland
Indonesia
  • TVRI (2004)
  • MyTV (2019)
Slovenia
Middle East
Australia
Canada
  • CFA (1999–2000)
UAE
Hong Kong
Kuwait
South Africa
Greece
Iceland
Spain
Qatar
Algeria
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