The Mr. Men
When Adam Hargeaves asked his father what a tickle looked like, the response was an orange fellow with a blue hat, no torso and - of course - extra
ordinarily long arms. This was Mr. Tickle, and he was the first of 39 delightful characters, simply and colourfully drawn. Some of them embodied obvious characteristics (Mr. Happy, Mr. Clever, Mr. Small) some of them were less obvious (Mr. Bump, Mr. Bounce, Mr. Sneeze) and some of them were plain odd (Mr. Snow, who was only in existence for one night, and Mr. Daydream, who may not have existed at all), but they were all wonderfully unique. Each character has his own story, often searching for a job (Mr. Small, Mr. Rush and Mr. Slow) or learning the error of his ways (Mr. Greedy, Mr. Nosey, Mr. Mean), but each individual lived in the imagination to a far greater extent than the dozen or so pages of each book. It would be a lie to say the characters are insightful representations of the human condition, but they are clearly painted, both in the books and in the faithful cartoons voiced by Arthur "Captain Mainwaring" Lowe. The less said about the 'Mr Men' devised after Roger Hargreaves' death, and the abomination of the Mr. Men Show, the better - ignoring these pollutive additions, the Mr. Men stand as the most good-natured and attractive stories available to children. Or adults.