by Teppo Nieminen, degree student in Media
Growing up in Finland in the 90’s there are some definite things that define one’s childhood: getting your tongue stuck in metal in winter, swimming in lake or sea during the summer, Backstreet Boys, Spice Girls… and the Moomin cartoon.
Moomin’s (Muumit) are creations of Tove Jansson, a Finnish author. Her books about Moomins and their life were already popular and well known before the 90’s but on that decade something else happened.
In 1991 a Japanese animation studio in cooperation with YLE released a show called Tanoshii Moomin Ikka, in Finnish dub Muumilaakson tarinoita. It became a huge success in Japan (I mean, a HUGE) and a year later when the Finnish dub was finished it became a phenomenon in Finland too. It is a show that lives in cultural contiones, we quote lines from it sometimes not even knowing that, everyone from toddler to granny has seen every episode at least once. Since its first airing in television in 1992 the show has been rerunning almost non-stop to this day and it is one of the most well-known things about Finland abroad.
I can talk about the show for days, it’s really, REALLY good and influenced most of our childhood. I don’t even know anyone who doesn’t like the show! I highly recommend you to look up the show (or/and the books) if you manage to find them. The Finnish dub hasn’t got any subtitles anywhere so if you want to learn Finnish with them, you must have a decent knowledge of the language already.
Luckily, I have made a little help for you. As an Autumn project I subtitled the feature film related to the show. It is called Muumipeikko ja Pyrstötähti (Moomin and the Comet) and it acts as a prequel to the show. It is one of my favorite films and so it is to many others. If you want to learn the language of the into the culture, this is a good place to start.