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Bear

What Crawls Beneath

Definitely a darker sort of anthropomorphic story — that’s The Rats of Heaven, a new novel by J.J. Elliot.The Rats of Heaven tells the story of the fallen angel Rahab, as he seeks revenge on the angels that exiled him to live out his existence on Earth as a rat. When the fallen angel meets a dying serial killer in the sewers they strike a deal that will terrorize a city. Only a 12 year-old boy knows what their secret and how to stop them. The Rats of Heaven will take the reader from the sewers of a modern city to the gardens of Heaven.” What a ride. Check it out over at Amazon.

image c. 2019 by JJ Elliot

Little Bear in London

And more good news coming to us from Animation World Network: “STUDIOCANAL, Nickelodeon, and award-winning producer David Heyman have announced a global deal and released a first look for a brand-new Paddington (working title) television series for preschoolers. Actor Ben Whishaw (Paddington 1 & 2) will reprise his role as the beloved voice of the title character in the new CG-animated series, which follows the adventures of a younger Paddington. Paddington will air on Nickelodeon’s networks worldwide in 2020… Fully animated in 3D, the new Paddington series sees a younger Paddington writing to Aunt Lucy from Windsor Gardens. Each episode will open and close with Paddington’s letters as he tells Aunt Lucy what he has learned about life through the day’s new exciting adventure.” Check out the article for more. Looking forward to this!

image c. 2019 STUDIOCANAL

Bear, Bear, Dragon

Animation Magazine recently let us know about two anthropomorphic animated TV series coming from Singapore’s August Media and South Korea’s Studio Gale. First up there’s Tish Tash. “The series centers on young and hugely imaginative Tish, her bear family, and her larger-than-life imaginary friend, Tash. No matter what troubles they face — be it the age-old terror of long, boring car trips or helping Tish’s baby brother not be sad about losing his favorite toy — these special friends can create new worlds around themselves, embarking on imaginative adventures and finding their own creative angle to help solve any problems that life throws at them.” Then there’s Journey of Long, a comedy that “… follows the adventures of a dragon with a dream of becoming the world’s top chef”. Check out the video clip over on YouTube. Both these shows premiered at MIPCOM, and they’re hoping for world-wide distribution in 2019.

image c. 2018 Studio Gale

Stuffed with Fluff

Some of the most iconic funny animal illustrations in the entire world get the scholarly treatment in The Art of Winnie the Pooh by James Campbell, published by Harper Collins. “Winnie-the-Pooh and his friends have enthralled generations of children and have become some of the world’s most beloved characters. But before their adventures were captured in many millions of books published in nearly fifty languages, they started life in the 1920s as the product of a unique collaboration between author A. A. Milne and illustrator E. H. Shepard. They wove images and text together in a way that was utterly original for the time. It was a process that Shepard relished; he continued to create artwork for new editions until his death in 1976 at the age of ninety-six. This lovingly designed, full-color volume, which includes a foreword from Shepard’s granddaughter, tells the story behind this remarkable partnership, and traces the evolution of Shepard’s work, from his first tentative sketches to the illustrations we know and love, including the characters’ later incarnations by the artists at Walt Disney Studios.” The book is available now in hardcover.

image c. 2018 Harper Collins

The Bears Who Stare — Now Everywhere

Thanks to Animation World Network we’ve learned that the ever-popular Care Bears are back again — this time exploring more of their world and its inhabitants. “Premium subscription streaming service Boomerang is set to unlock the imagination of the next generation of Care Bears fans as the official domestic home and world premiere destination for Care Bears: Unlock the Magic, a brand new 2D animated series from Cloudco Entertainment… A current take on The Care Bears that also plays homage to iconic brand elements like “The Care Bear Stare,” Care Bears: Unlock the Magic sends the Care Bears on the road for the first time, exploring wonderful, never-before-seen areas surrounding Care-a-lot called The Silver Lining. And as a result, the bears will get to meet new creatures and employ their powers and wits like never before.” Only thing we don’t know yet is a launch date. We’ll find out!

Image c. 2018 Boomerang

Bear and Butterfly

Jim Benton is a comic creator known for titles like Dear Dumb Diary, It’s Happy Bunny, and other titles for younger readers with a sense of humor. Now IDW is previewing his latest graphic novel, simply titled Clyde. According to Comics Beat: “Arriving in February from IDW / Yoe Book, Jim Benton’s Clyde is an original graphic novel that follow Clyde the Bear as he moves from Cubville to Grizzly City (with an ex-juvenile delinquent butterfly) to see if The Bad Life is for him”. It’s a ways off still, but look for it in paperback next February.

image c. 2018 IDW Publications

What’s the Price of Admission?

For a while we’ve been hearing about a new animated film called Wonder Park. Well now Paramount Pictures have released the first teaser trailer, and Animation Scoop has more information. What’s it about? “One magical day, June is running through the woods to find her way home where she discovers an old rollercoaster car and climbs inside. She suddenly finds herself in Wonderland, an amusement park she had created in her mind and put aside. All of her rides and characters are brought to life but are falling into disarray without her. Now, with the help of her fun and lovable park characters, June will have to put the wonder back in Wonderland before it is lost forever.”  Ooo… The voice cast includes Jennifer Garner, Matthew Broderick, John Oliver, Mila Kunis, and Kenan Thompson. Directed by Dylan Brown, Wonder Park is set to be released in March of 2019.

image c. 2018 Paramount Pictures

Plushies to the Rescue!

Here’s a new one-shot full-color comic book from Alterna Comics: The Fear Diaries.A dangerous threat to children across the world has returned. In the depths of The Nightmare Realm, The Dark Mistress has bode her time, waiting for the right moment to strike. Theodore Bearsly and his ragtag team of stuffed heroes face the greatest battle yet as they encounter The Dark Mistress’ army of evil toys who will stop at nothing to collect the fear of every child on earth.” Written by Garrett Gunn and illustrated by Jim Callahan, Ulises Grostieta, and Nicolas Touris, this new compilation brings together issues #1 – #3 of the original comic from last year. Check out the reviews over at Comic Book Round Up.

image c. 2018 Alterna Comics

Teddies Follow the Clues

Well look what showed up in our news-feed… Animation magazine talking about a new series for young viewers. “Upcoming Netflix Original animated series Treehouse Detectives is ready to introduce itself to worldwide viewers this year. The preschool series will debut June 8 in over 190 countries/territories… Treehouse Detectives is created by Seoul-based animation studio Enpop and co-produced with Saban Brands… Aimed at children ages 3-6, the series follows brother and sister detective team Toby and Teri as they ‘use the clues’ and ‘follow the facts’ to solve everything from backyard mysteries to the bigger puzzles of the natural world.” Looks like another season is already in the works, too.

image c. 2018 Enpop