I was only in my lounge a few seconds one day last week while doing some home maintenance. A quick glance at the TV my grandson was watching, it was The Clangers.

Later it struck me what I'd seen, it was a NASA type astronaut and one of The Clangers, they were seemingly doing a 'first contact' type handshake.

I've since looked online for Clangers meet NASA and also for Earth finds the Clangers but no joy.

Did The Clangers ever make contact with Planet Earth?

  • 3
    Do you recall whether it was the old-style stop-motion animation from the 1960s/70s, or the more recent glossy CGI version? Commented May 6, 2020 at 14:33
  • @ClaraDiazSanchez although they use computers to add some special effects and remove supports and strings, the new Clangers are also stop motion. youtube.com/watch?v=SR_yb02QVFs Commented May 7, 2020 at 15:49
  • 1
    Fair enough, though I think the new version is indeed much shinier and brighter than the original (and the computer-generated rocket exhausts don't compare with the penny firework effects!) Commented May 7, 2020 at 16:03

3 Answers 3


The new Clangers series features the episode "The Visitor" (first aired 2019), in which a human astronaut lands on The Clangers planet.

IMDB link

If you're in the UK, you can watch this episode on BBC iPlayer - it was shown on the CBeebies channel.

  • 1
    I believe this episode was produced in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing.
    – Tiggerous
    Commented May 6, 2020 at 13:47
  • That was the one thanks @Tom Revell, it must have been repeated last week when I briefly glimpsed it. I've now watched the entire episode on BBC iPlayer. There is a minor tribute to Doctor Who in it, the Clangers present the astronaut with a Tom Baker style stripey knitted scarf.
    – Danny Mc G
    Commented May 6, 2020 at 20:04
  • In the old series, a probe similar to the Mars "Viking" landers arrived on the moon. It had a telescope attachment, which was pointing in Major Clanger's direction. Major Clanger thought it was trying to shake hands - and ended up pulling the telescope off while shaking it. The probe flew off back to Earth immediately after that.
    – AJM
    Commented May 7, 2020 at 11:00

The Clangers were visited by astronauts from Earth a few times. In Season 2 "The Tablecloth" an astronaut lands and plants a flag, which is then repurposed by the Clangers as a tablecloth, since their previous tablecloth had been cut up to make overcoats for the Froglets. As you can see though, it is not an American flag, but a composite of the USA and the USSR flags, so the expedition wasn't mounted by NASA as such. In the next episode, "The Rock Collector", another astronaut comes and attempts to collect rock-samples. I guess this is the episode you glimpsed. The Clangers thought the rock samples were rather dull though, and swapped them for some good blue-string pudding. Much nicer!

picture showing astronaut with mixed USA / USSR flag

  • 5
    Fake news! These photographs were staged: allaboutguppys.com/moon/index.html
    – richardb
    Commented May 6, 2020 at 13:37
  • It's not even the right US flag - only 48 stars. Hawaii became the 50th state in 1959, ten years before the first moon landing. Commented May 6, 2020 at 18:08

I suspect you may be recalling that time Clangers appeared on Doctor Who in a scene apparently on Luna (with a NASA-like rover) and made something of a fool out of John Cleese The Master [misremembered that bit].

"Only puppets, you know… for children!"

Or perhaps, just the full epsiode of The Clangers from which that snippet in Doctor Who was drawn. :) You can see an astronaut get face to face with a Clanger for the first time at about the 5:20 mark.

Clanger meets Astronaut

  • Thanks but I'm not sure that's what I saw, a few seconds of an astronaut leaning forward and shaking hands with a Clanger. I couldn't see such a scene in that clip
    – Danny Mc G
    Commented May 6, 2020 at 7:50
  • 2
    In new Doctor Who the master makes a similar error with TellyTubbies. Commented May 7, 2020 at 15:51

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