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TV Series

From China to the World

Talk about International! Cloth Cat Animation in Wales and 9 Story Distribution in Canada have teamed up with Magic Mall Entertainment in China to bring Magic Mall’s new animated TV series Luo Bao Bei to the wider world. This is from Cloth Cat’s web site: “The series centres on spirited, fun-loving 7 year old Luo Bao Bei as she explores everyday life with her friends, family and animal companions, having adventures and learning that even though we seem different on the outside, the emotions we all feel make us fundamentally the same. Starting life as a popular cartoon spokesperson and community icon in Beijing, this show is created by Grace Tian.” The head writer for the new series is David Ingham, who is well-known for his work on Shaun the Sheep and The Octonauts.

image c. 2017 Cloth Cat Animation

The Tale of the Irish Rooster

Speaking of MIPCOM, as usual the hey-buy-our-TV-series trade show has given us lots of anthropomorphic animation to hope might make its way to our shores. Among them is Brewster the Rooster, created by Salty Dog Pictures and distributed internationally by Monster Entertainment. According to C21 media, “The show… follows the adventures of six-year-old Maggie and her best friend Brewster as they find out the answers to questions only children could think to ask.” Animation magazine has an article from a year ago about this and other interesting projects that Monster has picked up for distribution.

image c. 2017 Monster Entertainment

Kitties From Italy

Another one we learned about from Animation magazine: Italy’s Rainbow Studio (home of Winx Club) has teamed up with Canada’s Bardel Entertainment to bring us 44 Cats, a new animated TV series. (The title is based on a very very popular song in Italy.) Here’s what the creators say: “The series centers on a group of cats who act normally when thy are around people, but act just like humans when they are on their own. Just like children, the little cats see the world of adult humans as confusing and full of strange rules. Highlighting themes of friendship and altruism, 44 Cats is driven by the main characters’ love of helping others.” Currently the show is at MIPCON, searching for distribution in the wider world.

image c. 2017 Rainbow

If You Give A Mouse A TV Show

Looks like Amazon has brought us a classic children’s illustrated book series as a new animated TV series for their Amazon Prime service. If You Give A Mouse A Cookie (famously written by Laura Numeroff and illustrated by Felicia Bond in 1985) was adapted for animation by Mercury Filmworks in Canada. Show-Runner Joe Scarborough has quite the animation resume’, having worked on shows like Arthur, Doug, Curious George, Pocoyo, and Martha Speaks. This new series follows a young boy named Oliver and his best friend, an adventurous mouse. Their friends are various other kids whose companion animals include a cat, a pig, and even a moose. Check out the preview video over at YouTube.

image c. 2017 Amazon Prime

When Animation Got Cool Again

Quick bit of history: Things were looking kind of bleak for American animation in the late 1970’s. It took a while to shake off the blues and get things going in the 1980’s, but when they finally did, animation came back with a bang. And now there’s a new book about it — with an appropriate title. “Totally Awesome: The Greatest Cartoons of the Eighties is the ultimate guide to ’80s cartoon nostalgia, featuring the art, toys, and inside story behind icons like He-Man, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, G.I. Joe, and the Thundercats. For an entire generation of kids weaned on the intoxicating excitement of eighties cartoons, the decade can be summed up with two words: Totally Awesome! With a thriving Saturday morning network schedule, a full complement of weekday syndicated programming, and the removal of guidelines that prevented cartoons from being based on toys, the 1980s enjoyed an unprecedented TV animation boom that made household names of a host of colorful characters. From He-Man and the Masters of the Universe to The Transformers, G.I. Joe, and The Muppet Babies, eighties cartoons would have such a huge impact on an entire generation that decades later they have become pop culture touchstones, revered by fans whose young minds were blown by their vivid visuals and snappy storytelling. In this deluxe book, Andrew Farago, a respected cartoon historian and child of the eighties, provides an inside look at the history of the most popular cartoons of the decade, as told by the writers, animators, voice actors, and other creative talents who brought life to some of the era’s most enduring animated shows.” Hey, a decade that brought us Gummi Bears and The New Adventures of Mighty Mouse? We’re there! Totally Awesome is coming in hardcover from Insight Editions at the end of November.

image c. 2017 Insight Editions

A Bear in a Hat on Your TV

We got this from Animation World Network: Although the second Paddington live action/CGI film won’t hit theaters until early next year, Studio Canal have announced at MIP Junior that they already have a new Paddington animated series in development for television. (Of course there was already an animated series back in the 1970’s. It was scripted by Paddington’s creator himself, Michael Bond, and animated with stop motion and paper cut-outs.) Studio Canal hopes to have the little bear’s new series available in late 2018 or early 2019.

image c. 2017 Studio Canal

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Fun with Cats and Dogs

Over at DC Comics, the “let’s fool around with Hanna-Barbera” fun continues… with the premier of The Ruff & Reddy Show comic. “In the Golden Age of television, Ruff and Reddy were on top of the entertainment world…until the world turned, and they were forgotten. Now, Ruff is a washed-up television actor. Reddy is a clerk in an upscale grocery store. Can a hungry young agent convince the two one-time partners to make a comeback—and convince the world that it wants to see the famously infamous dog-and-cat comedy team back in the spotlight?” Written by none other than the famous Howard Chaykin, with art by Mac Rey. Look for it by the end of October.

image c. 2017 DC Comics

Woo-Hoo!

Looks as if IDW gets the honor of publishing the tie-in comic for Disney’s new DuckTales animated series. After a preview “issue #0” this last summer, the first issue of Disney DuckTales hit the shelves recently. “In ‘The Great Experiment of the Washing Machine, Donald and the Nephews visit a top-secret lab, chock-full of crazy inventions to make life easier… but might make them shorter, instead! And then, learn ‘The Chilling Secret of the Lighthouse!'” The comic is written by Joe Caramagna and illustrated by Luca Usai and Gianfranco Florio.

image c. 2017 IDW Comics

Where’s The Pigeon?

The strange meeting of Hanna-Barbera pushed sideways through DC Comics continues with the recent release of Dastardly & Muttley #1. According to them, it’s like this: “It’s a red-letter day for the good folk of Unliklistan as they start to power up their first atomic reactor. But after pushing the wrong button, the ultra-rare radioactive element, unstabilium, has been released into the atmosphere! Now it’s up to pilot Lt. Col. Richard ‘Dick’ Atcherly and his navigator Captain Dudley ‘Mutt’ Muller to save the day. Will they safely complete their mission? Or are things about to get a little…wacky?” Written by Garth Ennis and illustrated by Mauricet, it’s available now.

image c. 2017 DC Comics