At first glance it seems like In Search of the Wow Wow Wibble Woggle Wazzie Woodle Woo is one giant music video for a concept album. The film was, after all, a promotional piece for writer/creator/star Tim Noah’s stage show and music album for kids. Consisting of about a dozen songs with barely any semblance of story in between, the film is somehow all brilliantly pieced together by Noah in a way that makes the continuous deluge of songs work as a story without much speaking dialogue.
“Wibble Woggle” stars Noah as a man-child version of himself. The entire story takes place entirely in Tim’s monochromatic bedroom, where he goes on adventure after adventure through his mind. We see the life of an overly-imaginative child. One whose daydreams are always getting him into trouble. Tim’s imagination is personified in the form of an audible voice that he dialogues with throughout. The movie takes awhile to get to the actual plot, but eventually he’s tasked with finding the elusive and mysterious Wow Wow Wibble Woggle Wazzie Woodle Woo. Tim is the only visible human. Every once in awhile Tim’s mother will call up to him in order to spark another song or minor plot point.
The film keeps our attention through its insanely artistic and visual set. Everything is white with black lining except for Tim and his various outfits, as well as creatures and set pieces that come into play for their respective songs. The plain palette allows the featured colors to really pop, making every image memorable.
We see that Tim is a lonely kid. His imagination is, in a way, his best friend. But throughout this particular story, we see him struggle with the burden that an overactive imagination has also caused him. He’s bullied at school, his mom is always getting on him about focusing on his homework, and his frustration is finally coming to a head.
The music is aimed at children, but the melodies neve pander. If there weren’t any lyrics at all, you’d think they were by some artist on the radio back then. The songs are also very eclectic. They range from ’70s soft rock to Talking Heads-like new wave. And they’re showcased by Noah’s operatic, yet contemporary voice. He’s sings like an ’80s Dan Fogelberg. A couple of the tunes need to be stretched to fit the story contextually, but we’ll let them slide since they’re so catchy.
During a time when children’s movies and videos were at an all-time high in terms of both quality and oddity, In Search of the Wow Wow Wibble Woggle Wazzie Woodle Woo is a true lost gem. These days, a film like this would have been animated or simply would have never come to fruition. They don’t make them like this anymore. But honestly, they barely made them like this back then either.