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A short (two seasons in France, one and a half in the US) 2004 French cartoon series that became a CGI film in 2008.
The story is set in a World in the Sky, originally intended to be our own, millennia into the future, but later Ret Conned as being a different universe entirely (with a mythological (?) dragon having caused the literal Big Bang). There's a lot of dragons around, ranging from being a nuisance to mortal danger, and the two protagonists Gwizdo and Lian-Chu are constantly searching for lucrative dragon-slaying jobs. Can be considered a Weird Thing from France.
Dragon Hunters provides examples of:
- Action Girl: Zoe/Zoria.
- All Animals Are Dogs: Hector, the little blue dragon, often acts like a dog (he growls, sometimes barks, and cocks his leg to pee). He also wears a dog collar.
- Beleaguered Assistant: Hector ends up doing the majority of the grunt work for Gwizdo and Lian-Chu: carrying heavy loads of equipment and supplies, pedaling the St. George, sharpening weapons, and even (at one point) doing Gwizdo's laundry. While Lian-Chu seems appreciative of Hector's efforts and treats him with respect as a part of the team, Gwizdo often adds insult to injury by loading on the verbal abuse. Hector responds to Gwizdo by grumbling about the situation.
- Big Beautiful Woman: Jennyline, the innkeeper.
- Big Guy, Little Guy: Gwizdo is a skinny runt, and Lian-Chu is very tall.
- Catch Phrase: Gwizdo has a collection of these ("Just sign here, here, and here." "Boyoboyoboyoboy!" "Run for your liiiiiiives!"), and Lian-Chu even gets in on the action once in a while ("It won't work, Gwizdo").
- Chekhov's Skill: Lian-Chu's knitting.
- Deadpan Snarker: Gwizdo; Hector also counts.
- Disproportionate Retribution: After the main characters killed a dragon made out of fire, it exploded and covered a nearby village in a thin layer of ash. The people there apparently thought that was a good reason to try to kill them.
- Fat and Proud: Jennyline again. After going on a hunt with the guys, she tells them that she's never doing that again because it's "bad for her waistline": she lost 20 pounds (not that she looks any different).
- Foreshadowing: Gwizdo does this near the beginning of the episode "Isle of Mist" after seeing how young all of the Brotherhood members are.
Gwizdo: Looks like rutabagas are quite the Elixir of Life.
- Fountain of Youth: This is the real reason why the Brotherhood of the Dogdalites values the Island of Mist so much.
- Gentle Giant: Lian-Chu.
- Gosh Dang It to Heck: A particular example from "The Family Fortune" springs to mind: "I am your son. I swear to gosh I am."
- Heterosexual Life Partners: Gwizdo and Lian-Chu. They've been best friends almost as long as they can remember (both were orphaned as kids and grew up together at the same orphanage). Lian-Chu is the only one who can make Gwizdo's conscience work, and without Gwizdo, Lian-Chu would always fight dragons for free and would probably have starved long ago.
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Quite a few episode titles are plays on well-known catchphrases or allusions to other works ("Desperately Seeking Zoria," "Little Rumble on the Prairie," "Dead Dragon Walking," etc.)
- Koan: Lian-Chu always has one handy. Sometimes Lampshaded by Gwizdo.
- Lotus Eater Machine: in the episode "The Stuff of Dreams", Gwizdo breathes in spores from a dragon and falls into a coma; in his dream, he becomes a hero, everybody respects him, and Jennyline is a stunning red-haired beauty he falls in love with.
- Lovable Coward: Gwizdo. Borders sometimes on Dirty Coward when the Jerk side of his Jerk with a Heart of Gold personality gains the advantage.
- Lovable Rogue: Gwizdo again.
- Meaningful Name: Tubalard, who (you can probably tell from the name) is a bit portly.
- Monster of the Week: Each episode features a battle against a different "dragon"; by the end of the episode, the creature has been vanquished.
- The Movie: And it is The Prequel, too.
- Mr. Vice Guy: Gwizdo usually haggles with desperate villagers over the price of the Hunters' services or actually tries to swindle them. However, his schemes either go wrong or his good nature prevails, effectively preventing the team from getting rich and settling down.
- Never Say "Die": averted. The Real Song Theme Tune by The Cure says it as much as it can.
- Non-Action Guy: Gwizdo.
- Oh Crap: In the show's intro, Gwizdo, Lian-Chu, and Hector get this expression once they realize that they're standing in a large dragon's mouth.
- Only in It For the Money: Most of the time.
- The Other Darrin: Not only is the soundtrack for the second season completely different, but EVERY voice actor in the English version is replaced.
- Our Dragons Are Different: Oh yes. Gwizdo and Lian-Chu go after a number of different kinds of dragons over the course of the series, and no two are alike. With all the variety, it seems most likely that any creature that is threatening enough to make a village hire hunters to get rid of it is labeled a "dragon" for simplicity's sake.
- Plucky Girl: Zaza.
- Real Men Wear Pink: Lian-Chu is a very skilled swordfighter, a Badass, something of a Genius Bruiser and a generally big muscular giant of a guy. He's also very fond of knitting.
- Samus Is a Girl: Zoria.
- Scenery Porn: There's plenty of that here.
- Shorter Means Smarter: Occasionally subverted, as Gwizdo clearly is the most skilled when it comes to getting jobs (and money - Lian-Chu and Hector usually don't really make a lot when he's not around), but Lian-Chu is often more sensible than Gwizdo.
- Shout-Out: The flying machine that Gwizdo, Lian-Chu, and Hector use to travel from place to place is called the St. George. Given the subject of the series, this a likely reference to the dragon-killing Catholic saint of the same name.
- Status Quo Is God: Sometimes the two hunters get to fly home with the reward money, but by the start of the next episode, they are invariably flat broke.
- This Is No Time for Knitting: At the beginning of The Movie, Gwizdo berates Lian-Chu for knitting. Later, Zoe (thinking the needles she found were Gwizdo's) points out that it's not very knight-like to knit, yet in the end, Lian-Chu uses the knitting needles to blind the world-eating monster they were after.
- Those Magnificent Flying Machines: The St. George.
- The Unintelligible: Hector.
- Tickle Torture: Happens in the episode Desperately Seeking Zoria.
- Weasel Mascot: Hector. Also The Unintelligible and a Deadpan Snarker.
- World in the Sky: The setting of the series.