fredag, november 16, 2007

When stuffed animals let loose

The purple guy with the shocking red hair is Harry, best known for his job as spokespuppet for DSB (Denmark's state rail). The handsome panda with the motorcycle rally red bandana is the eponymously-named Panda, who will surely get a post of his own someday. I'm not sure when I took this photo, or why. But based on Harry's on-screen persona, it somehow doesn't seem so far off. I'm sure he's a nice puppet, but he's, well, a little up-tight. So it makes sense that when he lets loose, he lets really, really loose.

Harry's been around for several years, hanging out with his non-puppet friend Bahnsen (played by well-known Danish actor Søren Pilmark). They are point-counterpoint, Bahnsen sensibly prefering the train, which is proven always to be faster, cheaper, and generally more efficient, over Harry's pig-headed (puppet-headed?) insistence on the supremacy of his old beat-up car. The two friends do everything together. Over dozens of commercials, they have gone on holiday, played tennis with Bahnsen's parents (both played by Søren Pilmark, revealing an eerily realistic looking talent for playing older women), gone out clubbing. Bahnsen has helped a drunken Harry to take the train home from a Christmas lunch, and has cycled Harry to the train station when his car has been out of commission. Despite all of this, the only person who seems to realize that Harry and Bahnsen are clearly more than just friends is me, or at least no one I've shared my theory with has agreed with me (and some have been quite passionate in their disagreement).

I've long had a crush on Harry, even since I first clued in to the fact that this strange-voiced purple fuzzy creature was a repeating character on television. As I've grown to understand what he's saying (though I still find him a bit difficult), I love him even more. And realized that he's probably a few fibers short of being a full-brained puppet. I realize that I share my love for Harry primarily with elementary school aged Danish children, but I don't care. Harry is everywhere...and it will only take a single trip to a Danish train station to realize that I mean that there is certainly enough of him to go around.

You can see some of Harry's starring roles here. I really do recommend them all. Find a Danish-speaking friend to help you, as there's some pretty funny wordplay, and interesting use of cultural stereotypes. Or just enjoy the visuals, as I spent so much of my first months in Denmark doing.

5 kommentarer:

Smiler sagde ...

I watched Bollywood and Orange Tennis. Very very funny. Of course I don't understand a word, but that makes it even funnier somehow because Danish sounds really funny to me. Great post! Michele sent me here today.

kimananda sagde ...

Smiler, welcome and thanks! Orange Tennis is a good one for seeing Søren Pilmark in drag. He really is quite convincing.

Devil Mood sagde ...

On that picture it reminded me of Alf for a brief moment.
He's watching tennis on this video but the connection is so bad, I don't know if I'll be able to see it all.
So far I didn't understand a single word but I'll amuse myself with the visuals :)

erin sagde ...

Only the coolest companies use puppets in their commercials.

kimananda sagde ...

Ms. Mood, I hope you got to see one...they're only minute long commercials. And I can kinda see the Alf connection...they both have a bit of a 'grumpy old puppet' aura to them.

Erin, I think you may be right.