Priklucheniya Kapitana Vrungelya (The adventures of Captain Vrungel) is TV minis released back in the mid 70's in the USSR based on the novel with the same title. It was a number of short parts, with the total time of a full-length play movie, so short, that they put 2 parts on the air daily for about 1-2 weeks, normally during winter or summer school vacations. The original book features an old Sea Captain who's name is Vrungel, what in Russian sounds a lot like noun "vrun" which means a liar, a boaster, a fantasy story teller, so the reader is invited to take the Captain's stories with a grain of salt, and to decide for himself what is truth and what is fantasy. Captain together with his apprentice Lom goes on global yacht race, which is a invitation to the reader to cast a look on the world, to see different countries, meet different nations, and to see how Captain Vrungel makes his way in this crazy, motley, sometimes friendly, sometime not very friendly world. All characters (Captain Vrungel, Apprentice Lom, Fux, Archibald Dendy) were taken from the original book, but the plot in TV series was somewhat modified with a criminal story where global yacht race becomes just an instrument for the international mafia to smuggle a statue from the Royal Museum. Therefore some new characters were added - a British styled super-agent 00X - a hilarious spoof of 007 and Inspector Gadget who constantly looses despite of all his crazy spy tech, and a pair of Italian style gangsters talking to each other in violent fake Italian rants and doing damage to 00X in most fantastic ways. There is lots of absurdity comedy in Gangsters VS 00X episodes, invented by the TV series creators specially to be on par with Captain Vrungel's stories absurdity. The Adventures TV minis instantly became all the rage with Soviet schoolchildren. And one of the reasons for success was ahead of time animation combining in one still: black and white and color videos, cut-out animated figures, non-painted objects like real fire, gun smoke, water, car dashboard, TV, wine bottles, cigar etc. For example a video of ocean becomes a background for cut-out animations of Captain, his yacht, Lom, Fux, etc, painted guns fire with real flame and smoke, water streaming from the painted tap is real non-painted water. Also normal animation is used in some episodes. All painted animations are extremely elaborate and detailed to stand out from the video backgrounds and settings in full realistic effect like real life grotesques. Music and songs (5 hits) are superb. The song performed by gangsters is a brilliant musical spoof of Perry Como's "It's impossible", so "Italian" cheesy, with the verse lines going in fake Italian like "we are banditto, notoriousitto, we are castetto, pistoletto, oh yes, we are shootingtto, stealingtto this or that now and then, oh yes....". Other songs performed by 00X, Fux, Vrungel, Lom are fully original compositions. Captain Vrungel and his friends have to use all their intelligence, quickwittedness, inventiveness, and all actual reserves of fantasy to get through the adventures described in the book and the new ones added by the TV series creators. The series are children friendly, contain no violence or black humour - it was very strict about video productions for children in the USSR - in case you don't mind lots of guns, plugging fingers into 220 V mains, fake Italian swearing, and a nude woman statue.