Zog – BBC1

(Image credit: Magic Light)

Animated adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's picture book about an accident-prone dragon named Zog, featuring the voices of Lenny Henry, Tracey Ullman and Kit Harington

Animated adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's picture book about an accident-prone dragon named Zog

Accident-prone young dragon Zog (voiced by W1A’s Hugh Skinner) is forever getting into scrapes as he learns to fly, breathe fire and roar in this 30-minute animation based on the much-loved children’s book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

Luckily, Zog finds a friend in young Princess Pearl (Patsy Ferran), who patches him up after each misadventure and who would much rather be a doctor than a princess.

Brought to the screen by the same team who gave us The Gruffalo and The Highway Rat, this is an enchanting tale, beautifully narrated by Lenny Henry, with Tracey Ullman a delight as Zog’s long-suffering teacher Madame Dragon.

TV Times rating: *****


Hugh Skinner voices Zog

TV Times caught up with Zog creators Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler to find out more…

Where did the inspiration for this story come from?

Julia: My publisher said, ‘Can we do dragons next?’ I thought of the words ‘Madame Dragon’ and they had a nice sound, so I decided she could be a teacher. My husband, Malcolm, is a doctor, so I thought Princess Pearl could have medical ambitions.

Zog shows Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler

Author Julia Donaldson with illustrator Axel Scheffler

Do you have a way of getting into your characters?

Julia: I try to create something I can actually act out. With Zog, Malcolm was Zog and I was Madame Dragon. I was quite strict, so I like the way Tracey’s made her kinder.

Do you have any famous fans?

Axel: Prince William’s kids. It’s strange because they know us and yet they’re the famous ones...

Mandy Cooper
TV Times Highlights Editor

As TV Times Highlights Editor I get to hear about all the latest TV shows coming soon. Here at TVT HQ we are in the privileged position of selecting the best programmes from across all the channels and streaming platforms. Our mission is to make it easier for our readers to decide what to watch - and give them lots of choice of genres - all the latest shows, plus some nostalgic choices we call hidden gems, too. My career began with a postgraduate degree in periodical journalism (ahem, yes old school!) in 1991 and I’ve worked in TV media since 2000.