Russell Ferguson is a hedgehog with a talent for organization.
Russell is somewhat uptight, but always makes sure his plans go through and keeps things from getting too out of control. Because of his orderly skills, he frequently acts as the leader of the pets.
Out of all the pets, Russell is considered to be the most level-headed. He is intelligent, clever, and loves to organize things and make plans. Unfortunately, he sometimes goes overboard trying to make too many plans at once. He also tends to overly-complicate things when they should be really easy to do or manage.
It is not that he means to make things harder or seem twice as challenging since he simply wants to try to make everything as flawless as possible in order to succeed.
Sometimes, he can be a bit selfish, such as when he tried to make Minka sell her art and what-not, not realizing he was only making it business for her, thus no longer any fun. Fortunately, he realizes his behavior towards her was unacceptable and apologizes to her at length. He has a fairly cynical view of "love" as seen in Secret Cupet. However, after briefly falling in love with Penny Ling (due to a love song spell by Sugar Sprinkles), he seems to have a slightly more positive outlook on it.
Development and design
Russell Ferguson was designed by Hasbro designer Kirsten Ulve in 2011. One of her original illustrations shows he had a very different appearance, with different spikes and ears. He also had a brown face and belly and wore a pink tie.
The bonus "A Look Behind The Pet Shop Doors" featurette from the DVD "Little Pets, Big Adventures" revealed that, prior to January 2012, he was named Winston. In 2011, the name Randall was used. That same year, the name Sonic was used until Sega of America threatened legal action against Hasbro.
According to Julie McNally Cahill, he was named after Russell Johnson, who acted as the Professor on Gilligan's Island, and his original last name was "Fergus, in honor of an awesome cat [she] used to have".
Russell is a bright orange colored hedgehog with light coloring inside his ears and bright golden-green eyes. His muzzle is the same color as his fur, while the markings on his face and tummy are peachy-orange. His quills are a mixture of bright brown and dark brown. His black nose is small and pointy, and he also has a tiny fang that often sticks out.
- Spy clothing
- A green bow tie during an imagination spot.
- Hawaiian shirt and sunglasses (as "Fun Russell")
- Hula (grass skirt and coconut bra)
- Star Trek, yellow shirt and black pants.
- Scottish outfit
- Light blue dress with gloves and a cowgirl hat.
- In Frenemies, he wears a tuxedo.
- In The Expo Factor - Part 1, during an imagination spot, he is dressed as a British Punk.
- In The Expo Factor - Part 2 he is dressed in a Musketeer costume for a photo session.
- In Some Assistance Required he (along with Zoe and Tangier) are dressed in aviator outfits.
- In Boys Don't Care About Clothes, Russell wears a British outfit.
- "I AM NOT A HUMANARIAN! I AM AN ANIMAL!"
- "I'm a hedgehog!"
- In several episodes, Russell does something similar to a "spindash," which is a small reference to Sonic the Hedgehog's famous move.
- Sam Vincent once provided the singing voice for Sonic in every episode of Sonic Underground.
- Russell is often with Zoe as a couple.
- In the first season finale, Blythe secretly admits to Russell that she will miss him the most out of the pets during the summer, meaning he might be her favorite.
- When Russell exclaims, "I AM AN ANIMAL!" in What Did You Say?, it is an inversion of Joseph Merrick's line in The Elephant Man.
- A running gag is that Russell is often mistaken for a porcupine.
- In the very early episodes, his voice was slightly deeper and not as nasally. The reason for this is unknown.
- He has an extreme fear of ghosts and (strangely) marshmallows.
- Russell expresses many traits commonly found in those who are on the autism spectrum, notably many obsessive compulsive and repetitive behaviors, as well as apparent troubles with understanding many social cues and having a tough time fitting in with the other pets due to it.
- Speaking of Sonic, Russell is the second fictional hedgehog who, in many ways, is the complete opposite of him.