As a fan of Winnie the Pooh, 'The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh' was always one of my favourite shows as a child. Not all childhood favourites have held up, but 'The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh' is one of the strongest examples of those that have.
While the original three 60s-70s short films ('Honey Tree', 'Blustery Day' and 'Tigger Too') and the 1977 'The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh' are just a little better, 'The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh' is one of the Winnie the Pooh franchise's high points. Both "The 'New' Eeyore" and "Tigger Private Ear" are classics for each of the characters they centre around Eeyore and Tigger. There is a slight preference for "Tigger Private Ear", due to Tigger being my favourite character, but "The 'New' Eeyore" is a contender for the show's best Eeyore-centric episode.
The animation in both episodes is very bright, well drawn and colourful, everything looking lush, detailed and smooth, especially in "The 'New' Eeyore". The music is playfully jaunty and beautifully orchestrated, enhancing scarier moments with hauntingly urgent and eerie scoring, sadder moments with poignant and particularly lush and emotional scoring and the more playful moments with a jaunty touch. The theme tune is very rousing and one of the catchiest theme songs of any animated show of the late 80s.
Writing has a perfect mix of whimsy, drollness, wit, charm and childhood innocence. "The 'New' Eeyore" sees Eeyore at his most hilarious, especially in the parts where he's trying to be Tigger, and contains some truly delightful dialogue and moments, such as anything to come out of Eeyore and Tigger. A particular highlight is the manic ride through the wood involving many of the characters as a result of the wheels on Eeyore losing control, and also love the opening scene with the party atmosphere. The episode also teaches a great and not heavy-handedly done moral of being accepting of who you are, even when different, and not be like somebody else.
Meanwhile, "Tigger, Private Ear" is a classic for fans of Tigger. While Pooh and Gopher have some great moments with "Where were you on the night of the 43rd?/Um...Asleep" and "Your honour...the verdict?/Don't rush me sonny!", but Tigger in his private ear guise steals the show, hilarious and lovable as he ever was with the episode highlight being where "he throws himself at the mercy of the court". The animation is vibrant and beautiful, the story is a clever take on the detective genre with some bits reminiscent of 'Clue' and the episode is beautifully orchestrated as always. The writing is superb, one of the funnier episodes of the show for me, and the opening sequence is genuinely atmospheric.
All the characters are wonderful, pessimistic but also funny and like-a-true-friend Eeyore, adorable Pooh and often hysterically funny Tigger being particularly noteworthy. The voice acting is excellent with not a weak link.
Overall, for Eeyore and Tigger fans both of these episodes are classics. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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