The Family Ness was a cartoon first broadcast by the BBC in 1984, which was all about the Loch Ness Monster, or more correctly I should say Loch Ness Monsters, since the cartoon proposed that there were a whole family of Nessies living within probably the most famous Loch in Scotland.
The show was created by Peter Maddocks, who was also responsible for Jimbo and the Jet Set. Maddocks used the name of the Loch as a joke when naming the various members of the Nessie clan, by calling them names such as Ferocious Ness, Clever Ness, Grumpy Ness and two of my personal favourites, Her High Ness and Eyewit Ness (who wore an eye patch like a pirates). One must wonder though how the clan grew so big, given that there only appeared to be a couple of female Nessies (Her High Ness and Lovely Ness).
The cartoon was not just about the monsters though. Angus and Elspeth MacTout are a brother and sister who have befriended the Nessies, and are able to make them appear when they blow on their Thistle Whistles. It’s a useful friendship, as Angus and Elspeth help keep the Nessies safe when they happen to be spotted, and in return the Nessies help out the two children when they get into scrapes.
Mr. MacTout, Angus and Elspeth’s father, happens to be the keeper of the Loch (although he seems to spend most of his time playing the bagpipes), which explains how the children get to spend so much time with the Nessies. Like most of the adults in the cartoon, he is a complete non-believer in the existence of the Loch Ness Monster.
There is one human who is convinced of the Nessie’s existence though, and that is Professor Dumkopf, who is a bit of the mad scientist type who tries a number of weird and wacky plans in order to try and prove the existence of the Nessies. Luckily the monsters and the children always manage to thwart his plans.
The end titles of the show featured a song called “You’ll Never Find a Nessie in the Zoo”, which was released as a single, although it failed to enter the Top 40. Personally I preferred the far bouncier intro tune, which you can view below.