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|Genre||Animated television series|
|Created by|| Arlene Klasky |
|Starring|| E.G. Daily |
|Country of origin||USA|
|No. of episodes||170 (1 unaired)|
|Running time||22 minutes (11 per episode)|
|Original channel|| Nickelodeon (1991-present)|
Nick Jr. (1996)
|Original run||11 August 1991 – 8 June 2004|
Rugrats is a NickToon on Nickelodeon. It was the first Nicktoon. It aired from 11 August 1991 until 8 June 2004. Produced at Klasky Csupo, Inc. of Los Angeles, the show is about how babies talk and view life and perceive the events happening around them. Each character is personified with his or her own individual charm. 20th Century Fox considered to release The Rugrats Movie as the first Rugrats film in 1995, but passed on the script when transferred their distributor duties for Paramount Studios and the release date delayed to 20 November 1998.
The main story is babies with wild imaginations. The characters are shown below:
- Tommy Pickles (voiced by E.G. Daily, and Tami Holbrook in the unseen pilot): Tommy is the show's main protagonist, one-year-old son of Stu and Didi Pickles, and older brother of Dil Pickles. His cousin is Angelica Pickles. He's the leader of the babies, and is dressed in a blue shirt and diapers throughout the series (with the exception of the first episode in which he wears an orange shirt). He is best friends with Chuckie Finster. Tommy is also the bravest and most adventurous of all the babies. He is also willing to do whatever he has to for his friends and family. He is the main character of the first and third Rugrats films, and a supporting character in the second.
- Chuckie Finster (voiced by Christine Cavanaugh up to 2002 due to motherly leave; Nancy Cartwright to series' end): Chuckie is the oldest of the babies at the age of 2 and is Tommy's best friend. He is the son of Charles "Chaz" Finster and his late mother's name was Melinda He has messy orange hair, wears large purple glasses like his father, and wears a blue shirt with the planet Saturn on it and green cargo pants and red shoes that are always untied, and he also has freckles on his face. Chuckie was originally an only child and his mother died from an unknown reason just a few months after Chuckie was born. He is the scaredy-cat of the group and always disapproves of an adventure that comes up. Later on, his father remarries Kira and Chuckie becomes an adopted big brother to her daughter, Kimi. Kira adopted Chuckie. He and his father, Chaz, are the main characters of the film, Rugrats in Paris. His middle name is Crandall as proven in the All Grown Up episode, "Rat Traps".
- Angelica Pickles (voiced by Cheryl Chase): Angelica is Tommy and Dil's 3-year-old cousin and daughter of Drew and Charlotte Pickles. She is very spoiled by her parents and mean to the babies, but will occasionally do something nice for them. She has short blond hair tied in two pigtails with purple bows, a purple dress with a red undershirt and polka dot stockings. She is able to speak with and understand both the babies and adults.
- Phil and Lil DeVille (Both voiced by Kath Soucie): Twins (boy and girl, respectively) Phil and Lil are the twin children of Howard and Betty DeVille. They enjoy doing everything together, whether it be playing in the mud or finding insects. They are often confused due to their similar appearance, despite the fact that Lil has a long one piece dress that matches Phil's shirt (green with a duck on it) and has a bow in her hair to tell them apart. They usually call each other by their full first name (Phillip and Lillian) whenever they argue.
- Spike (Voiced by Bruce Willis in Rugrats Go Wild! only): The Pickles' family dog. Though he appears in almost every episode of the series, he is not usually featured as a main part of episodes. Tommy claims him to be his best "animal" friend. The character is considered a main character in the series, appearing in almost three quarters of all of the episodes, though he usually does not come along when the Rugrats venture to new locations. It is mentioned that his breed is the fictional "Siberian Tiger Hound." As shown in The Rugrats Movie and Rugrats Go Wild, Spike is very protective of the babies, as he sees them as his own.
- Dil Pickles (voiced by Tara Strong): Dil is Tommy's younger brother. He is unable to speak to the babies, but is able to garble words together. He likes to chew and drool on people and things. He also enjoys hitting Tommy in the head with various objects, most notably his rattle. Dil was introduced in the first Rugrats movie after his birth. At first, Tommy and Dil are extremely jealous of each other, but the two later realize the bond they share as brothers. He is named after his mom's cousin short for Dylan
- Kimi Finster (voiced by Dionne Quan): Chuckie's stepsister, introduced in the second Rugrats movie, Rugrats in Paris. Kimi, the group's sole Asian character, is of Japanese descent; she is a very adventurous girl, much like Tommy, and always maintains a positive attitude and a bright smile. She helps Chuckie learn to be a good big brother and often helps him overcome his fears.
- Susie Carmichael (voiced by Cree Summer): Another child capable of talking to both the adults and the babies, Susie often serves as Angelica's rival and bullying foil, but the two are actually really close friends. She is kind, compassionate and trusting. She often wears a bright colored jumper and shoes similar to Angelica's outfit. Carmichael is African-American (the only one of the core Rugrats of that ethnicity) and was added to the series during the second season (episode "Meet the Carmichaels"). Despite being a major character, she appeared less frequently than the other Rugrats.
Other babies and kids (Minor characters)Edit
- Alisa Carmichael is the oldest daughter of the Carmichael's, and, thus, Susie's oldest sister. Voiced by Bettina Bush.
- Buster Carmichael is one of Susie's older brothers. Voiced by Kath Soucie.
- Edwin Carmichael is one of Susie's older brothers. Voiced by Cree Summer.
- Harold Frumkin is a kid in Angelica and Susie's pre-school class. Voiced by Pat Musick.
- Timmy McNulty is the oldest of the five McNulty boys. Voiced by Tara Strong.
- Todd and Ty McNulty are the twins in the McNulty clan. Voiced by Tara Strong and E.G. Daily.
- Terry McNulty is the another one of the McNulty boys. Voiced by Grey DeLisle.
- Teddy McNulty is the youngest of the McNulty boys. Voiced by Grey DeLisle.
- Stuart "Stu" Pickles (voiced by E.G. Daily as a baby in Sour Pickles, Jack Riley): Tommy and Dil's easy-going father, and brother of Drew. Absent-minded toy inventor who only wants to be a good provider for his family. Married to Didi Pickles. Birthday is October 23 according to the All Growed Up special. In each Rugrats film, either Stu's actions or inventions helps sets the story in motion, and by story's end he somehow manages to save the day (particularly, in the first and third films). Chas' best friend since childhood, similar to Tommy and Chuckie's friendship.
- Diane "Didi" Kropotkin Kerpackter-Pickles (voiced by Melanie Chartoff): Tommy and Dil's mother. A part-time schoolteacher and married to Stu. It is revealed that she is coulrophobic, just like Chuckie Finster. Didi is also a Jewish-Russian American since having 2 Russian Jewish parents and may also have been born in Russia. Arlene Klasky said that she based the character on herself.
- Louis Kalhern "Lou" "Grandpa" Pickles II (voiced by David Doyle from 1991 until his death in 1997, and Joe Alaskey from 1997 to series' end): Tommy, Dil and Angelica's grandfather and Stu and Drew's father. Lived with Stu's family for the majority of the series and often babysat the children.
- Andrew "Drew" Pickles (voiced by Michael Bell): Married to Charlotte, and is also Angelica's father and Stu's older brother. A well-paid accountant, Drew does not always get along with his brother, and the two often bicker over petty problems. His catchphrase (when addressing Angelica) is "Princess."
- Charlotte Pickles (voiced by Tress MacNeille): Angelica's workaholic mother. CEO of her own company and married to Drew. She tries to be a good mother, but is usually sidetracked by business interests. Is often shown talking on her Mobile phone to "Jonathan" (her co-worker), who was shown several times during early episodes of the series.
- Elizabeth "Betty" DeVille (voiced by Kath Soucie): Phil and Lil's mother. Quite the jock and women's-libber. Married to Howard. Helps operate the Java Lava Coffee House with Chas Finster.
- Charles Norbert "Chaz" Finster II (voiced by Michael Bell): Widower; Chuckie's father, from whom he inherited his adenoidal whine. Is an attorney. Married Kira in the second Rugrats movie. Kimi's stepfather. Runs the Java Lava Coffee House with Betty. Stu's best friend since childhood, similar to Tommy and Chuckie's friendship. He played a minor role in the first Rugrats film and a supporting one in the third. In Rugrats in Paris, he played a much larger role as he was the film's deuteragonist.
- Kira Watanabe-Finster (voiced by Julia Kato): Kimi's mother and Chuckie's step-mother. Married Chaz in Rugrats in Paris: The Movie. Operates the Java Lava Coffee House with her husband. She somewhat plays the straight woman to the rest of the adults' wackiness, but she enjoys showcasing and trying new things, as opposed to a lot of the rest of them. Kira is also Japanese.
- Howard "Howie" DeVille (voiced by Philip Proctor): Phil and Lil's mild mannered father. Often overpowered by and cringing towards his wife, Betty.
- Dr. Luciell "Lucy" Carmichael (voiced by: Cheryl Carter (1992, 1997-Series End), Lisa Dinkins (1993), Hattie Winston (The Rugrats Movie): Susie's mother and Randy's wife. She is a Harvard-educated "wonder mom" and does a lot of cool things. She is also a doctor. She delivered Dil and removed Susie's Tonsils.
- Randall “Randy” Carmichael (voiced by: Ron Glass): Married to Lucy Carmichael & is Susie's father. Randy is a writer for the famous cartoon Dummi Bears Show.
- Sarah "Taffy" Maynston (Voiced by Amanda Bynes): is Lulu's teenage grandniece, who was hired as a regular babysitter for the babies. She is the lead singer of a band, Taffy and the Saltwaters.
Minor adult charactersEdit
- Louise "Lulu" Jonston (voiced by Debbie Reynolds): Lou's second wife; he met her in the hospital where she works as a nurse. Also Tommy, Dil, and Angelica's step grandmother and Stu and Drew's stepmother.
- Beatrix "Trixie" McGee: Tommy, Dil, and Angelica's deceased grandmother; Drew and Stu's mother; and Lou's first wife. She has never appeared in person on the show because she died long before the show began, and is only seen in Grandpa Lou's flashbacks. Little is known about her, although at one point, it is mentioned that she worked on Estes Kefauver's campaign for the Democratic Presidential Nomination of 1956 Presidential Election. Only seen in the episode "Grandpa's Date"
- Melinda Finster (voiced by Kim Cattrall): is Chuckie's birth mother. She loved flowers, and she died a few months after Chuckie's birth, long before the show began. She is only seen in flashbacks, although she is referenced several times in the series.
- Boris Kropotkin and Minka Kerpackter (voiced by Michael Bell and Melanie Chartoff): Didi and her brother Ben's Jewish parents. Russian immigrants who are always complaining that it wasn't this way in the "Old Country". Boris periodically babysat the babies (when Grandpa Lou was out for the night).
- Colleen McNulty (Voiced by Theresa Ganzel): is the McNulty boys' mother.
- Conan McNulty (Voiced by Michael Keenan): is the McNulty boys' grandfather and Lou's rival. They've both had a rivaled childhood, compteting against each other all the time.
- Larry and Steve (Both voiced by Scott Menville): are two teenage boys, who always seem to have different odd jobs, such as painters; movie theater attendants; grocery store employees; etc. They are named after two producers of some episodes. Of the two, Larry later appeared in the episode "Angelica Orders Out" as a caterer for Zippy's Snappy Home Delivery, but his hair is dyed red, and he is voiced by a different actor.
- Jonathan Kraskel (Voiced by Rene Auberjonois in 1995 and Dan Castellaneta from 1998 until the series end): is Charlotte's meek assistant, whom she constantly yells at. He was originally portrayed with purple skin, but had fair skin in later appearances.
- Dr. Werner Lipschitz (voiced by Tony Jay): A child psychologist who Stu, Didi and Chaz commonly refer to for help in raising the babies..
- Fifi (not voiced): Purple poodle, who was originally a Parisian stray which Spike fell in love with in the second Rugrats movie and became his girlfriend.
- Spiffy and Pepper (not voiced): Purple and brown (respectively) puppies adopted by the Stu Pickles and Chas Finster households. The offspring of a union between Spike and Fifi. (Note: In US showings of "Mutts In A Name", Puppy's identified as "Pepper", as a result of a viewer poll).
- Fluffy (not voiced): Angelica's cat whom Angelica loves dearly, but who always causes trouble for the others, particularly Spike.
Minor television charactersEdit
- Reptar (voiced by Busta Rhymes in The Rugrats Movie only): A big green dinosaur reminiscent of Godzilla. Tommy and the other Rugrats love him; Reptar products such as cars, clothes and candy are frequently seen on the show. Reptar was a main character in Rugrats in Paris and had his own theme park called Euro Reptarland. There was a giant Reptar robot there too, which the babies piloted and fought against Jean Claude. He has also had his own ice show, which Lou believes is "sheer brilliance". The babies interrupted it looking for a lizard which they believed was "Baby Reptar".
- The Dummi Bears: A cartoon watched by the babies. It is a spoof of the Care Bears (though the name is more a play on the Gummi Bears). Susie's father Randy Carmichael was a writer for the show, and in one episode, the babies are taken to a movie theater to see the Dummi Bears movie (they escape from their parents to go see the reptar movie, and cause havoc in the movie theater).
- Blocky and Oxwinkle (Blocky voiced by June Foray): Stu and Drew's favorite cartoon as babies. They are an obvious parody of Rocky and Bullwinkle.
- Yuri and Svetana (Svetana voiced by June Foray): A pair of villains who try to trick and get rid of Blocky and Oxwinkle, and calling them "Elk and Weasel". They are a parody of Boris and Natasha, and their nicknames for Blocky and Oxwinkle is a parody of "Moose and Squirrel".
- Cynthia: Angelica Pickles favorite doll. Based on the American doll, Barbie. Cynthia's name possibly comes from the British doll "Sindy".
- Goober The Gopher: A friendly, hug-loving character created by Lipschitz Industries as a friendly children's icon resembling Barney The Dinosaur. In one episode, the grownups got rid of the Reptar decor in the babies' room figuring it scared Dil and replaced it with Goober the Gopher. This led the babies to get Reptar and Goober to fight for who should be the better mascot.
The series has a very vague setting. It has been shown that the Rugrats, as it is probably assumed, live in the United States, but the name of a specific city or state is never mentioned. The best guess as to which region of the country in which the series takes place is somewhere in the southwest, since the family has taken trips to both the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas (Nevada), and Stu once mentioned "driving through the desert" while returning home from a one-day trip. There have also been several scenes of desert or arid land around the area where the Rugrats live.
It is also unclear what type of community the characters live in; it could be a small city or a suburb of a larger city. This ambiguity in the setting was probably done intentionally to help give the impression of seeing the world through the naive eyes of toddlers.
One episode does however show they live somewhere in California due to the license plate shown on Grandpa's station wagon. Also in the episode Special Delivery, a post office has the state flag in front of it.
In another episode in the first season, Didi is shown teaching at a high school in Yucaipa (California), an actual town about 70 miles east of Los Angeles (California). It does seem to snow in the wintertime, as in the episode where the babies play in the snow and pretend to go to the north pole (However this same episode also expresses the rarity of snow in the area by showing Didi unfamiliar with extreme snowfall and being unwilling to travel even next door, and Stu getting excited that school is cancelled just as it was- perhaps most recently for him- in his childhood).
The show originally revolved around a group of toddlers. The toddlers are able to communicate with each other through baby speak, although viewers can understand them, because it is 'translated'. Often, they mispronounce words or use poor grammar. An example of this is using the word "poopetrator" instead of "perpetrator." The group is often reluctantly joined by Tommy's cousin, Angelica. Angelica, 3, is able to communicate and understand language from both the toddlers and the adults, which she often uses as an advantage when she wants to manipulate either party. She is usually very mean to the babies. Susie, who lives across the street from the Pickles, is also able to communicate on the same level as Angelica, though she isn't manipulative. As a result, Angelica and Susie often clash.
In The Rugrats movie, a new character, Dil, was introduced. After The Rugrats Movie, in which Tommy's baby brother Dil is born, he was soon added as a character on the show. As a four month old baby, Dil is not able to communicate with anyone. Later in , after Rugrats in Paris: The Movie was released, Kimi, who is Chuckie's stepsister, was added as a character.
Other spinoff plansEdit
Besides All Grown Up! there were plans for two other spinoffs that never made it to air:
- The Carmichaels was planned to see Susie move away from California to Atlanta (Georgia), where she apparently has relatives. There were plans to make The Carmichaels into a series as early as the 1999-2000 TV season, but plans involving the toddler Rugrats had put the new series' plans on ice. Subsequently, when plans for All Grown Up! and Angelica and Susie's School Daze (below) came up, concerns for continuity prompted this idea to be shelved for good. The "Kwanzaa" ep (2001) serves as the show's pilot.
- Tommy and Chuckie's The Adventures of William Shakespeare was planned to be about the titular characters going to high-school. 25 stories about William Shakespeare and his camels had originally been ordered, and slated to premiere late 2002, and was also intended to feature new looks for the twenty-nine characters from Rugrats. The most recent official word on this series was in this press release for All Grown Up!, when it was announced that it was reduced to just 4 episodes. There were also complications involving the planned new animation designs for the characters. The "Adventures Of William Shakespeare" ep (made for 2002, aired 2004) serves as the show's pilot, and used the regular Rugrats look (as did the other episodes involving the Shakespearers that actually aired before that ep in the US). Would-be news: Klasky Csupo has finally completed the 14 episodes of the series.
However, the Rugrats as babies will live on in direct-to-DVD feature animation series Rugrats: Tales From The Crib.
The Rugrats intro was parodied in an episode of Animaniacs. Also in The Fairly OddParents Channel Chasers it was known as Carpet Critters
Here's a few:
- God's Promise
- Right, Right Now!
- Chuckie's New Telephono
- Tommy Can't Stack Eggs
- Phil and Lil Build Ducks
- Angelica's Computer Desk
- Go East or West
- Get Along, Little Doggies!
- The Carnival of Complaning
- The Scales of Bullies!
- The Ultimate Story Countdown
- Phil and Lil's Polka Dance
- Save the Tree!
- Save the Octopus!
- Rugrats Join the Circus
- Meet Chuckie Finster
- Chuckie's New Mommy
- Kimi and the Great Sheep
- Underwear! (TV Adpation)
- Moving Away (TV Adpation)
- Rugrats was the most popular show on Nickelodeon before SpongeBob SquarePants.
- The Rugrats received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in a ceremony on 28 June 2001. It was placed at 6600 W. Hollywood Bl., near Cherokee Ave. outside a toy and costume shop.(Klasky-Csupo press release)
- The Rugrats had a daily comic strip that ran from 1998 to 2003.
- The Pickles are a mixed Jewish-Christian family. Many fans say the Pickles are somewhat based on Arlene Klasky's real family (Example: In the show, she is from southern California and in real life she is Jewish and married to a Christian). There are two episodes that reflect the Pickles' Jewish heritage, one episode deals with the Passover holiday and the other with Chanukah (in addition to episodes about Christmas, Easter, etc.). These episodes have been praised by Jewish groups and are rerun every year on Nickelodeon at the appropriate holiday times and can also be purchased on VHS or DVD.