11 July 2004 | Chip_douglas
Love those cheap tricks
Titatovenaar lived in a castle in the sky with his daughter Tika and her pet chimp Tato. In her room she also kept a couple of chatty marionettes who preferred to be called Grobbebollen instead of puppets. While Titatoverpa was trying to turn strawberries into camels up in his magic tower, Tika would hop down to the real world and promptly get into trouble. In the beginning they actually filmed these scenes on location, but soon the whole show was studio bound.
Tika only new one handy magic trick: clap your hands and everyone freezes. Therefore the special effects nearly all involved stopping the camera while the actors tried to remain in positions and placing something or someone in or out of frame. One person who was always on the receiving end of the mayhem was simply referred to as 'het Heertje', the most neurotic little worrier in town. When things got too far out of hand (like people turning into cucumbers), Tika's magic father would have to jump down to (reluctantly) help out.
The stories were presented in 5 minutes chapters each night before bedtime. At the end of an episode there would be some sort of cliffhanger, but Tika or her father would reassure the audience that everything would turn out fine if they tuned in tomorrow. The magic users were the only characters who were allowed to speak to the camera. Later these serials were combined into 30 minuted episodes with mixed results. The editing often resulted in awkward jumps, and the repetitive nature of the stories became all the more apparent.
In the second series the concept of a Grobbedal (valley) beneath the magic castle was added. It all became more of a trip and much more colourful, including Tika's costume. Many new magical characters appeared, pushing the leads to the background. In fact Tika's main function now became to get others out of trouble while her Toverpa remained largely off screen (so he could pay better attention to directing). Taking over the show were Grobelia, a witch living in the Grobbedal, Grandpa, who slept in a box and only came out for Brussels sprouts and Kwark, a human apprentice for Titatovenaar.
Whenever she did appear, Tika would try to get Kwark to join her for a ride on her broomstick, but since he was played by an English choreographer, he turned out to be more interested in men in real life and the actress who played Tika wound up with the actor who played her grandfather. Tato toveraap was replaced by Titi (sounds a bit rude) and the Grobbebollen got to fly around in their own little airplane. A group of long haired hippies called the Grob and Grol Band occasionally appeared, for every adventure had to end with a song. Thanks to Harry Potter, there is talk of a Tita revival, either as a musical, a new series, a motion picture or perhaps all three but...
Dat zien we morgen dan wel weer.
8 out of 10