One is a panda that typifies China, the other is a mole that has delighted Czechs and eastern Europeans for decades.
Now, thanks to the efforts of the Little Mole's 'family' in the Czech Republic and Chinese Central Television, the two will join forces in a new animated cartoon series that looks set to delight audiences in Europe and China.
The series, to be known as "The Panda and Little Mole," is in the final stages of production and will start to air in China from March 28, a senior CCTV executive told China Daily.
Weijing Zeng, the state broadcaster's director of animation, told China Daily the 52 episodes would be aired on CCTV's Children's Channel 14 from 7 pm weekly, with two 12 minute episodes per transmission.
The joint venture starts broadcasting as Chinese President Xi starts a two-day state visit to the Czech Republic, which officials say is aimed at enhancing relations between the two states at trade, sporting and cultural levels.
The Little Mole, Krtek in Czech, was the brainchild of Zdenek Miler, animator who first introduced the small black and white creature with the red nose 60 years ago. The cartoon series, famous for its simplicity, became a hit throughout eastern Europe and France.
CCTV first showed the original Little Mole series in China in the 1980s, and it rapidly gained a big following amongst children.
Chen Chao, 33, a Beijing-based porcelain artist, was impressed by the unique artistic style of the original when he watched the animation program during the 1980s.
"It was like a combination of paper cut and collage, and the subject dealt with the impact of human life on animal life, which in today's view, related to environmental protection, "he said.
He is curious to see whether there is change in artistic style and is looking forward to new stories and metaphors in the new panda and mole animation.
Lucie Bradacova-Gomezova, a property manager and translator, told China Daily that she prefers the Little Mole over American cartoons such as Tom and Jerry, which tend to be more violent, whereas the Little Mole is seen as gentle and adorable.
"I remember watching it as a little girl on a black and white TV when Czechoslovakia only had two channels. Now my kids love to watch it on DVD. It really stands the test of time," she said.