Numberjacks

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Numberjacks
GenreEducational
Written byChris Ellis
Directed byHelen Sheppard
Imogen Robertson
Voices of
  • Dylan Robertson
  • Robert Watson
  • Alice Baker
  • Jonathan Beech
  • Laura Maasland
  • Oliver Keogh
  • Roz Ellis
  • Harry Munday
  • Bob Golding
  • Rachel Preece
  • Ross Mullan
Opening theme"The Numberjacks Are On Their Way"
Ending theme"The Numberjacks Are On Their Way" (Reprise)
Composer(s)Justin Nicholls
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons2
No. of episodes67 (including two specials) (list of episodes)
Production
Producer(s)Roland Tongue
Camera setupJeremy Read
Jamie Shelton
Running time15 minutes
Production company(s)Open Mind Productions
DistributorBeyond Distribution
Release
Original networkCBeebies
Original release16 October 2006 (2006-10-16) –
11 December 2009 (2009-12-11)

Numberjacks is a children's television series for 4-5 year olds and is shown regularly on BBC2 and CBeebies in the UK. [1] It is produced by Open Mind Productions for the BBC and features a mixture of computer-generated animation and live action.

Synopsis[change | change source]

The Numberjacks are animated characters - the numbers zero to nine - who live in a sofa and solve problems outside. Each episode has the same structure. At the beginning of the episode, some of the Numberjacks will be engaged in an activity that will have relevance to the problem that is later discovered. Then an "agent" (a live-action child) will call in and describe the problem that is occurring. One or two of the Numberjacks will go out into the real world to solve the problem, while the remaining Numberjacks stay in their base and watch their progress on a screen. As soon as the problem is understood, 5 will worry about all the things that can happen. In the second series she does not worry about the dancing cow quite so much.

Once outside, the Numberjacks are shown in a live-action setting (although still animated themselves). They diagnose the problem by examination and with help from additional ideas from the agents, who call into the base. The problems are usually solved by creating and sending "brain gain", a magic force that can correct the problems once the solution is understood.

Once solved, the Numberjacks return to their base, replay what happened on a screen and then ask a question for the viewers.

The problems encountered are all based around simple mathematical concepts and the programme is intended to stimulate young children's interest in mathematics.

Characters[change | change source]

Heroes[change | change source]

The Numberjacks are the heroes. Each of the numbers 0-9 is an individual character and each is broadly the age of his or her number. 0, 2, 4, 6 and 8 are male, while 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9 are female. However, the gender of the individual Numberjacks is never explicitly stated.

  • 0 (lime), 1 (purple) and 2 (orange) are too young to participate in the problem solving and are usually only seen in the Numberjacks' base, although occasionally they get out and cause problems of their own.
  • 3 (pink), 4 (blue), 5 (teal) and 6 (yellow) are the main characters and are the ones that solve the problems, either going out into the real world or staying and monitoring things at the base. In the past, 4 has turned into a symmetrical 4, a 5, a 6 and a 14, 3 once turned into a 4, and 6 once turned into 2 3s.
  • 7 (red), 8 (azure), and 9 (green) are older and have their own tasks, seen every now and then if they become involved in a problem.

Villains[change | change source]

There are five "Meanies" who often cause trouble for people. The Problem Blob, the Puzzler and the Numbertaker are male, while the Shape Japer and Spooky Spoon are female.

  • The Problem Blob spits out green slime that causes anything it touches to suffer from a particular problem.
  • The Shape Japer causes problems by changing the shape of objects.
  • The Puzzler traps the Numberjacks inside a puzzle bubble or causes other problems and sets mathematical puzzles that must be solved before the problems will go away. He is arguably the most fearsome enemy of the Numberjacks, as any Numberjack unable to solve his puzzle would be trapped in a puzzle bubble for eternity.
  • Spooky Spoon mixes things up.
  • The Numbertaker is a white-coated live action man with an exaggerated top hat who removes numbers or numbers of things. As numbers themselves, the Numberjacks must be particularly careful when dealing with him. He uses a number sucker upper, a number grabber, a net, a magnet and a hook to take things. He rarely speaks.

Episodes[change | change source]

The series is comprised of 45 15-minute episodes, which are listed here:

Series 1 (2006–2007)[change | change source]

# Episode Original Air date Overview DVD release
1 The Trouble With Nothing 16 October 2006 0 makes things disappear and 6 flies out to sort everything out. This is the first episode when a Numberjack makes problem.

Agents: 33, 42, 16, 68 Numberjacks: 0, 1, 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 1
2 Going Wrong Going Long 17 October 2006 The Problem Blob makes the boys pencil get longer and the man's mop and the boys straw. 4 sorts him out. 3 can't go out even if she's taller than 4.

Agents: 16, 28, 68, 53 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 1
3 Sphere Today Gone Tomorrow 18 October 2006 The Shape Japer turns every sphere into a cube. 6 sorts her out.

Agents: 28, 33, 101, 70 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 2
4 In Out Shake It All About 19 October 2006 The Puzzler makes his eyes come out on both sides of him, making them turn, his glasses and nose on top: It's making everything outside and not in. 3 and 5 sort him out, once they are freed from the Puzzle Bubble.

Agents: 70, 94, 42, 53 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 1
5 One More Time 20 October 2006 When everyone passes under a bridge, they become one higher number: 4 turns into a 5, then 6. It's 1 that's causing all the trouble. Brain Gain changes 1's mind to make things one less.

Agents: 53, 28, 94, 68 Numberjacks: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 2
6 Forward Thinking 23 October 2006 The Problem Blob is back – and things go backwards and forwards. 6 hitches a lift. This is the first appearance of The Problem Blob's eye.

Agents: 16, 33, 53, 85 Numberjacks: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 3
7 Seven Wonders 24 October 2006 4 finds things add up to 7 when the Puzzler's about, and 7 is caught by the Puzzler.

Agents: 53, 42, 70, 16 Numberjacks: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Volume 3
8 Getting Heavy 25 October 2006 Spooky Spoon is swapping light things and heavy things – 3 has no problem in this episode.

Agents: 53, 16, 68, 85 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6, 9

Volume 2
9 Belongings 26 October 2006 Things don't belong when Spooky Spoon mixes things up – another problem for 5. In this episode, Spooky's trapped with a fork and a knife because of her last name (Spoon).

Agents: 16, 33, 68, 42 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 3
10 4 He's A Jolly Good Fellow 27 October 2006 The Numbertaker is taking all the fours he can find – will 4 be able to escape his clutches?

Agents: 28, 68, 101 Numberjacks: 0, 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 1
11 Boxing Day 30 October 2006 Boxes go wrong when the Shape Japer plays tricks – but 6 can do the trick too, when the Shape Japer puts him in a box.

Agents: 85, 33, 101, 94 Numberjacks: 0, 1, 2, 3 (The Numberjack-in-the-box), 4, 5, 6

Volume 1
12 Out of Order 31 October 2006 Spooky Spoon makes sure things are well out of order – until 5 sorts her out.

Agents: 47, 96, 73, 88 Numberjacks: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

TBA
13 Nine Lives 1 November 2006 The Puzzler has 9 trapped in a puzzle bubble – 6 and 3 come to the rescue. In this episode, 6 turns into two 3's.

Agents: 25, 34, 88, 100 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6 (two 3s), 9

Volume 2
14 Takeaway 2 November 2006 Not just a few problems, lots of them – 4 makes the Numbertaker take more than he wants to.

Agents: 28, 101 (Although mixed up with 42), 85, 70 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 4
15 The Cuck-Cuck-Cuck-Oo-Oo-Oo Bird 3 November 2006 The Puzzler espatilly have turns 5 into a wooden bird, he is rescue five. In the episode, doubled Numberjack in espatilly turns 5 in a bird was as a fivebird.

Agents: 14, 47, 73, 96 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 4
16 Stop And Go 19 February 2007 Things don't move when they should, like a walking trash bin etc. – 6 has got to sort Spooky Spoon out.

Agents: 34, 52, 73, 100 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

TBA
17 Off Colour 20 February 2007 Spooky Spoon wants to be the most colourful character around, by taking other yellow, red, and blue things – 4 is out to stop her.

Agents: 88, 34, 25, 100 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 1
18 A Game Of Two Halves 21 February 2007 The Shape Japer makes half a load of trouble, and 4 has to make things whole again.

Agents: 14, 47, 73, 96 Numberjacks: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 3
19 Out For The Count 22 February 2007 2 is turning everyone count incorrectly – 6 goes after him.

Agents: 96, 61, 100, 25 Numberjacks: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 4
20 The Container Drainer 23 February 2007 Everything is empty thanks to the Puzzler – 3 helps 5 to fill things up again but not without 3 getting caught by the Puzzler.

Agents: 25, 61, 96, 100 Numberjacks, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 5
21 Tens Moments 26 February 2007 1 and 0 get out and about and make ten of everything – creating more work for 5.

Agents: 25, 52, 61, 88

TBA
22 3 Things Good 27 February 2007 3 is out on her own trying to do battle with the Shape Japer, who does not like things in threes. 4 inset fly out to don't launch 43.

Agents: 25, 34, 88, 100

Volume 4
23 Say What You Mean 28 February 2007 Be clear what you mean or the Problem Blob will make trouble for you, as 4 finds out. In this episode, the Problem Blob sticks on two walls and a cube-shaped bush.

Agents: 34, 47, 100, 14

Volume 5
24 One Won 1 March 2007 There's only one of everything, thanks to the Numbertaker – 6 sorts things with help from 1.

Agents: 55, 68, 70, 94

Volume 2
25 Tricky Sixes 2 March 2007 The Numbertaker likes two lots of three today – 6 is the Numberjack to sort him out.

Agents: 42, 85, 55, 68

TBA
26 May The Fours Be With You 5 March 2007 The Shape Japer is after things that come in eights – 4 goes on the mission. In this episode, the Shape Japer stays as a cube, and become good eight at the end.

Agents: 16, 42, 68, 101, Numberjacks: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

Volume 5
27 Best Estimate 6 March 2007 The Problem Blob makes things go wrong when people can't estimate – 5 to the rescue.

Agents: 28, 55, 70, 101 Numberjacks: 3, 4, 5, 6

Volume 2
28 On and Off 7 March 2007 Spooky Spoon is mixing things up again, so instead of being on things are off – 4 is on the case.

Agents: 16, 33, 68, 85 Numberjacks, 3, 4, 5, 6

TBA
29 Zero the Hero 8 March 2007 0 to the rescue when just for once, the Numberjacks are the problem, not the answer!

Agents: 33, 55, 85

Volume 3
30 Bad Circles 9 March 2007 The Shape Japer is making bad circles by enter the circular hollow and say "Circle – BAD" – 6 gets ready to sort her out.

Agents: 28, 42, 70, 94

Volume 6
31 Famous Fives 12 March 2007 The Puzzler sets the problem – and 5 is the right Numberjack to sort it out.

Agents: 16, 42, 68, 94

Volume 6
32 Fair Shares 13 March 2007 Things aren't being shared fairly, thanks to the Problem Blob – 6 makes everything all right.

Agents: 28, 101, 85, 33

Volume 4
33 Being 3 14 March 2007 The Numbertaker is taking threes today – but he can't take Numberjack 3; 3 turns into a 4.

Agents: 28, 55, 70, 101

Volume 3
34 Into the Teens 15 March 2007 The Numbertaker has added ten more than 1 – 4 has to sort him out. in the episode, 4 turns into a 14. And espatilly hates eleven Numbertakers!

Agents: 33, 55, 70, 85 Numberjacks: 1, 3, 4, (14), 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

Volume 6
35 Slide and Turn 16 March 2007 The Shape Japer is moving things and causing problems – 5 goes out there.

Agents: 17, 41, 60, 106

TBA
36 Six Of One 19 March 2007 The Problem Blob is making trouble with sixes – Numberjack 6 to the rescue.

Agents: 22, 41, 60, 106

TBA
37 Time Trouble 20 March 2007 Time passes very strongly – thanks to Spooky Spoon. 5 investigates. This is the first appearance of the Beeper.

Agents: 38, 54, 79, 95

Volume 5
38 1, 2, 3, Go 21 March 2007 It's 1, 2, 3 – pattern time! 3 battles with the Puzzler.

Agents: 17, 54, 60, 106

TBA
39 More 4 22 March 2007 The Shape Japer makes trouble with symmetry – 4 goes out to sort things out.

Agents: 17, 22, 41, 38

TBA
40 Almost Human 23 March 2007 The Problem Blob causes trouble – and 4 tries out being a human being. There is a special Numberjack known as the Numberjack Man (played by Steven Lim), known as 4's temporary replacement.

Agents: 79, 83, 95, 106

TBA
41 Two, Four, Six, Eight 26 March 2007 The Numbertaker takes all the even numbers – 6 and 8 fly out to put things right.

Agents: 79, 54, 57, 17

Volume 5
42 Round and Round 27 March 2007 The Problem Blob has gotten people going around in circles – can 5 restore things to normal?

Agents: 41, 60, 83, 106

TBA
43 Square Dancing 28 March 2007 The Shape Japer's about – and 1, 4, and 9 sort out problems with squares.

Agents: 22, 41, 79, 95

TBA
44 Data Day 29 March 2007 Spooky Spoon is mixing things up and makes things at a cafe behave like party things and vice versa – 3 gets ready to take her on.

Agent: 17, 54, 60, 106

Volume 4
45 How? What? Check! 30 March 2007 5 sorts out the Puzzler's problems – and checks to make sure.

Agents: 22, 38, 83, 95

TBA
Series 1 Specials
1 Counting Down To Christmas TBA The Numbertaker, the Shape Japer, and Spooky Spoon make Christmas go wrong, and Agent 20 is one of the victims. 5 and 6 fly out and save Christmas Day with help from 3 and some other agents. In this episode, the Meanies are together.

Agents: 20, 77, 49 Numberjacks: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Volume 5 (Release Date: 24 November 2008)
2 Seaside Adventure TBA The Numberjacks have a holiday at the beach, only to face troubles with the Meanies!

Agents: 39, 91, 121, 122, 20 Numberjacks: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Volume 6 (Release Date: 3 August 2009)

Series 2 (2009)[change | change source]

# Episode Original Air date Overview DVD release
46 Ups and Downs 26 October 2009 Spooky Spoon is turning everything upside down, so 8 is sent out to help 4. TBA
47 On the Move 27 October 2009 The Problem Blob is making things move when they shouldn't, so 5 is sent out to stop him. TBA
48 Very Shapely 28 October 2009 The Shape Japer is causing problems again by stretching the shapes of things – 6 is after her, but one problem is when two circular hoops are turned into ovals. TBA
49 Wee Three Phone Home 29 October 2009 The Puzzler is causing some people to repeat his silly movements – 3 is sent out to stop him, and must solve three puzzles by herself as she lost contact with 4,5 and 6. TBA
50 Did You Notice Anything? 30 October 2009 The Numbertaker is taking away people's noticing skills, and then plays tricks on them without them noticing – 4 is sent out to defeat him. TBA
51 Measured Response 2 November 2009 Things are changing length thanks to the Shape Japer, so 6 is sent out to change them back, this is the first episode in season 2 with the appearance of Buddy Sticks. TBA
52 Think Again 3 November 2009 3 and 4 are playing in the gym when 5 discovers that Spooky Spoon is mixing things up again. TBA
53 Carry On Counting 4 November 2009 6 is sent out to do battle with the Problem Blob, who is causing people to go back to the beginning of things, sliming 6. Brain Gain helps 6. TBA
54 A Record In the Charts 5 November 2009 4 is sent out to defeat the Puzzler, who is stopping the cafe customers from remembering whether they have had too much food or not. TBA
55 Half Time 6 November 2009 The Numbertaker is halving the numbers of everything – 4 is sent out to stop him. In this episode, 4 turns into a 1, a 2, and an 8. TBA
56 A Close Thing 9 November 2009 A girl can't get near her teddy, and grown ups need help with things being too close. 6 flies out to sort the Problem Blob. TBA
57 A Circle at Both Ends 10 November 2009 3's buddy blocks become cylinders (Circle Sticks). 5 has to fly out when a boy has trouble with his chalks, thanks to the Shape Japer. TBA
58 Matchmaking 11 November 2009 Numberjack 1 plays a trick on Numberjack 4, always making the number of buddy blocks on the seesaw unbalanced. 3 flies out to sort the Numbertaker, who takes then adds anything so they don't match. TBA
59 A Different Sort 12 November 2009 0 and 1 are failing to help 3 sort her beautiful things. 4 flies out to stop Spooky Spoon sorting things out. In this episode, 4 becomes green, tiny, big, then wiggly wobbly. TBA
60 Areas of Concern 13 November 2009 In the gym, 6 and his buddy tiles are making patterns on the floor and flying around. 6 flies out to defeat the Puzzler. TBA
61 The Dreaded Lurgi 7 December 2009 In the gym 6 can't jump on the seesaw – and 4 feels ill too – they've both got the dreaded lurgi. 5 flies out to investigate and stop the Problem Blob from making people go up and down, round and round. In the meantime, 3 gets lurgi too, and agents help out. TBA
62 Fraction Fiction 8 December 2009 3 and 4 argue over entertaining 5's buddy blocks. They try to share them but the blocks get bored and wander off. 3 flies out to beat the Shape Japer from cutting things to pieces. In this episode, Shape Japer helps people four times. TBA
63 Interesting Times 9 December 2009 7 tells 0 and 1 a story about 3, 4, 5, and 6 going out one after the other; to sort out morning, daytime, evening and night time things, and Spooky Spoon herself. NOTE: This is the only episode in which Numberjack Seven acts as a narrator. TBA
64 More Ways Than One 10 December 2009 4, 5, and 6 are playing a version of Circle Slide, using different ways of moving. 4 goes out to rescue 8 who is trapped by the Puzzler by finding three ways to make an eight. TBA
65 Hundreds and Thousands 11 December 2009 4 is in the Cosy Room taking photos of 1 and 0. A girl has a hundred or so beads to make a necklace but then has only ten, then one. 6 flies out to defeat the Numbertaker. In this episode, the sent Brain Gain is used by a hundred agents' thousand fingers. TBA

References[change | change source]

Other websites[change | change source]