(Review) The 2016 Pilot of Cartoon Network’s Upcoming Series ‘Summer Camp Island’

You often find an original pilot of a series that is set to be shown on TV screens near you. I find it as a way to prepare ourselves and get a taste of what a series has to offer. Of course, series creators usually do some tweaking and changing to their program and you will most likely always see something different between the pilot and the final product.

Today, we’re looking at Summer Camp Island, which may be exactly what it sounds and much more. This cartoon was created by former animator and writer from Adventure Time, Julia Pott, and was greenlit and set to air on Cartoon Network in Summer 2018. Above anything, Julia is known for her unique animated shorts that can be found on YouTube. I must say that she has done a good job at creating her own style, so much that you can spot a series created by her from a mile away.

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So what has Pott unleashed on us with her 2016 pilot of Summer Camp Island exactly? How about a Summer camp full of bizarre and unusual situations? The camp counselors are popular girls who know magic (aka WITCHES), talking pajamas, monsters under the bed that are nosey and more oddities that you just don’t find at a normal Summer camp. Not to mention it’s all on an island. All of these strange happenings seems to overwhelm a fourteen-year-old anthropomorphic Elephant named Oscar, who misses his normal life outside of camp, so he plans a sleepover for himself and his best friend Hedgehog, who he also happens to have a crush on. Bad news for Oscar, because Hedgehog invites some others to the party including Max, an anthropomorphic badger who plays the role of the typical careless and jerk-ish teenage boy in a backwards hat and hoodie. Max is clearly the apple of Hedgehog’s eye and she gives him all of her undivided attention, which infuriates Oscar and ruins his original sleepover plans.

Just like the overall series itself, the world inside of Summer Camp Island is a roller coaster ride of strange and peculiar emotions. You can’t help but empathize with main character Oscar and feeling like a third wheel when someone you’re crushing over is all over someone THEY are crushing over. The series did a great job of totally spinning a kid’s usual experience at a Summer Camp into something out of a trippy dream. Trippy, as in almost everything was coming to life, including a pair of pajamas and a slice of pizza. Although, I do have to say that for a teenager, Oscar is a bit too child-like. So much that if his mother didn’t reveal his age in the beginning, you wouldn’t put him past ten years old. The same goes for Hedgehog, who I think shows her more mature side when Max is around. I’m not implying that they should act reckless, ride skateboards or drink coffee just because they’re teenagers, but the sleepover activities kind of screamed fifth grade.

With all of that being said, my B- rating does not change the fact that I 100% still want to see this show happen on Cartoon Network this Summer. I have to admit that the “nice guys finish last” lesson that came in plain sight at the end of the episode really surprised me. I was expecting the typical “good guys finish first” followed by a monologue from Hedgehog about how she doesn’t really like Max and that Oscar is the one she loved all along. Or Max ends up screwing things up with Hedgehog and her feeling magically bounce to Oscar. Really relieved that things weren’t so predictable with this one, but poor Oscar. The animation is something that is unique, but it’s going to take some getting used to of course. It’s definitely a different style from the series airing on Cartoon Network at the moment, so it makes me wonder whether the series will fit or not. We’ll just have to wait and see! We’ll keep you updated for an official release date for Summer Camp Island.

Fun Fact: Summer Camp Island is set to be the second series in Cartoon Network history to be solely created by a woman.

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SpongeBob, DuckTales, Trollhunters & More Animated Daytime Emmy Nominees

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Disney|ABC Television received 64 nominations for the 45th Annual Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards announced today. Disney Channel received 12 nominations, while Disney Junior scored nine nominations and Disney XD claimed five nominations, including one for the “DuckTales: Woo-oo!” TV movie which launched the new animated comedy series based on the Emmy Award-winning show treasured by a generation of viewers.

Nickelodeon programs including the mega-series SpongeBob Squarepants were also included in the children’s programming categories. Performers in animated programs such as Tom Kenny (voice of SpongeBob Squarepants) and Tress MacNeille, who does the voices of  Petunia Rhubarb, Madame Blueberry, Laura Carrot, and Junior Asparagus in VeggieTales in the City were not overlooked in the Best Performer in an Animated Program category. Netflix & Amazon Video are included to have nominees in their animation section with their web series Trollhunters, Puss in Boots: Trapped in an Epic Tale, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, Lost in Oz: Extended Adventure & more.

This year’s Daytime Emmys will be held Sunday, April 29, at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Southern California, and live-streamed via Facebook, Twitter and the Daytime Emmys website; the Creative Arts ceremony takes place the Friday prior. 

BEST CHILDREN’S ANIMATED PROGRAM
“Lost in Oz: Extended Adventure”
“Mr. Peabody and Sherman”
“SpongeBob SquarePants”
“Trollhunters”
“Wild Kratts”

BEST SPECIAL CLASS ANIMATED PROGRAM
“DuckTales: Woo-oo”
“All Hail King Julien: Exiled”
“Octonauts: Operation Deep Freeze”
“Puss in Boot: Trapped in an Epic Tale”
“A StoryBots Christmas”

BEST PRESCHOOL CHILDREN’S ANIMATED PROGRAM
“If You Give a Mouse a Cookie”
“Nature Cat”
“Peg+Cat”
“The Stinky & Dirty Show”
“Tumble Leaf”

BEST PERFORMER IN AN ANIMATED PROGRAM
Christopher Diamantopoulos, “Skylanders Academy”
Tom Kenny, “SpongeBob SquarePants”
Tress MacNeille, “VeggieTales in the City”
Andy Richter, “All Hail King Julien: Exiled”
John Tartaglia, “Splash and Bubbles”

OUTSTANDING CASTING FOR AN ANIMATED SERIES OR SPECIAL
“Blaze and the Monster Machines”
“Elena of Avalor”
“Puppy Dog Pals”
“Sunny Day”
“Tangles: The Series”

OUTSTANDING WRITING IN A PRESCHOOL ANIMATED PROGRAM
“Doc McStuffins”
“Octonauts”
“Peg+Cat”
“A StoryBots Christmas”
“Vampirina”

OUTSTANDING WRITING IN AN ANIMATED PROGRAM
“All Hail King Julien”
“Elena of Avalor”
“The Loud House”
“Trollhunters”
“Welcome To The Wayne”

OUTSTANDING DIRECTING IN AN ANIMATED PROGRAM
“Danger & Eggs”
“Disney Mickey Mouse”
“The Loud House”
“The Mr. Peabody & Sherman Show”
“Niko and the Sword of Life”

OUTSTANDING WRITING IN A PRESCHOOL ANIMATED PROGRAM
“The Stinky & Dirty Show”
“A StoryBots Christmas”
“Through the Woods”
“Tumble Leaf”
“Vampirina”

OUTSTANDING SOUND MIXING IN A PRESCHOOL ANIMATED PROGRAM
“Beat Bugs: All Together Now”
“Dinotrux”
“If You Give A Mouse a Cookie”
“Pete the Cat A Groovy New Year”
“Rusty Rivets”

“The Stinky & Dirty Show”

OUTSTANDING SOUND EDITING IN A PRESCHOOL ANIMATED PROGRAM
“Beat Bugs: All Together Now”
“Click Clack Moo: Christmas at the Farm”
“Dinotrux”
“If You Give A Mouse a Cookie”
“Mickey and the Roadster Racers”

“A StoryBots Christmas”

“The Stinky & Dirty Show”

OUTSTANDING SOUND EDITING – ANIMATION
“The Adventures of Puss in Boots”
“All Hail King Julien”
“All Hail King Julien: Exiled”
“LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures”
“Marvel’s Spider-Man”

“Trollhunters”

OUTSTANDING INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT IN ANIMATION
Marie Thorhauge Torslev – Production Designer, “Through the Woods”
Steve C. Meyes – Background Layout Artist, “Puppy Dog Pals”
Tom Caulfield – Storyboard Artist, “Tangled: The Series”
Michelle Park – Color Designer, “Star vs. The Forces of Evil”
Robyn Yannoukos – Colorist, “Tumble Leaf”

 

WonderCon 2018 Panel Programming Lineup Announced

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BOOM! Studios is pleased to announce it will exhibit at WonderCon 2018, which will take place at the Anaheim Convention Center, CA, during March 23-25. BOOM! Studios will once again occupy one the most prominent booths on the floor, #1301, and feature a diverse array of signings and exclusive merchandise.

Additionally, BOOM! Studios is proud to announce a powerful line up of panel programming including:

Friday, March 23rd
2:00-3:00 BOOM! Studios: Discover Yours
—The world of BOOM! Studios has grown bigger than ever before, meaning there’s a comic book for every kind of fan, and this is the panel to Discover Yours! Join Josh Trujillo (Dodge City), Sarah Kuhn (Clueless), David F. Walker (Planet of The Apes) Ben Blacker & Ben Acker (The Thrilling Adventure Hour), Carly Usdin (Heavy Vinyl), Matt Gagnon (Editor-in-Chief, BOOM! Studios) & more as they reveal big news from the diverse imprints of BOOM! Studios, Archaia, BOOM! Box, and KaBOOM!, along with some special surprises for every fan in attendance. Moderated by Filip Sablik (President of Publishing & Marketing, BOOM! Studios). Room 211

SaturdayMarch 24th
2:30-3:30 Power Rangers: Shattered Grid
—Lord Drakkon has returned, and after the events of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #25, No Ranger Is Safe! Join writers Kyle Higgins (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers) and Ryan Parrott (Saban’s Go Go Power Rangers), actor David Yost (“Billy Cranston,” Mighty Morphin Power RangersTV Series), Dafna Pleban (Editor, BOOM! Studios), Melissa Flores (Director, Power Rangers Content, Saban Brands) and more to discuss the first-ever Saban’s Power Rangers comic book event and what it means for the original teenagers with attitude. This panel will make Power Rangers history with a moment no Power Rangers fan can afford to miss, along with exclusive news and first looks! Moderated by journalist Joshua Yehl (IGN.com). Room 200B 

Sunday, March 25th
11:00-12:00 Pop Culture is LGBTQ
— BOOM! Studios and GLAAD present an honest discussion of LGBTQ representation in pop culture and the path forward to a brighter, more inclusive future, with special guests including Wilson Cruz (Actor, Star Trek: Discovery), Elliot Fletcher (Actor, The Fosters), CB Lee (Writer, Not Your Sidekick), Rian Sygh (Artist, The Backstagers), Josh Trujillo (Writer, Dodge City) and Megan Townsend (Director of Entertainment Research & Analysis, GLAAD). Moderated by journalist Tracy Brown (LA Times).  Room 211

Garfield Is Back with a New Limited Comic Series

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Our favorite lasagna loving cat is back for another comic series. BOOM! Studios and PAWS Inc are proud to announce GARFIELD: HOMECOMING #1, a new four-issue limited series debuting in June 2018. Feeling mistreated and unappreciated by Jon, Garfield embarks on a journey for a new home and, along the way, meets up with a clown who works in an old-timey travelling circus. Convinced that this is the place for him, Garfield becomes part of the act. Wait. What is that cannon for?

GARFIELD was born on the comics pages on June 19, 1978. The comic strip is centered on the lives of a quick-witted orange cat who loves lasagna, coffee, and his remote control; Jon Arbuckle, his owner; and Odie, a sweet but dumb dog. GARFIELD was introduced to the world in just 41 newspapers and is now the most widely syndicated comic strip ever, appearing in 2100 newspapers. The strip, distributed by Andrews McMeel Syndication, is read by over 220 million people each day and is translated into 42 languages.

The success of the comic strip spawned an entertainment empire including television: Garfield and Friends, The Garfield Show, and a dozen primetime specials; movies: Garfield: The Movie and Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties; hundreds of best-selling books, and thousands of licensed products.

Writer Scott Nickel (Garfield: His 9 Lives) will pair with a different artist in each issue of GARFIELD: HOMECOMING, as Sara Talmadge (Steven Universe) takes us through this wild ride in the first chapter of Garfield’s journey outside of the friendly confines of Jon’s house.

“Putting Garfield on the road in GARFIELD: HOMECOMING allows him to meet a variety of new characters – both friend and foe – and his journey takes him to some interesting and unexpected places,” said writer Scott Nickel. “We hope fans enjoy the ride.”

“I’ve always loved Garfield and getting to take him on an all new adventure with Scott and the team at BOOM! Studios was such a thrill!” said artist Sara Talmadge. “Garfield’s taking on the circus with his usual sass and legendary appetite… But can he be the new star act that the circus needs?  Every page in this issue was a total blast to draw (I mean, what’s more fun than the circus?), and I hope you enjoy it too!”

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GARFIELD: HOMECOMING #1 features a main cover by Andy Hirsch (Adventure Time) with Sara Talmadge.

“We’ve told some incredible Garfield stories at BOOM! Studios, but we’ve never taken Garfield this far outside his comfort zone – both literally and metaphorically,” said Whitney Leopard, Editor, BOOM! Studios. “In-between all the crazy adventures and trademark Garfield humor, the heart of this story is one that readers of all ages can relate to – the search to find that place where you fit in and feel like you can truly call your home.”

GARFIELD: HOMECOMING is the latest release from BOOM! Studios’ critically acclaimed KaBOOM! imprint, publisher of world-class licensed series such asAdventure TimeSteven UniverseOver the Garden WallPeanuts, and Rugratsalong with original series like Brave Chef Brianna by Sam Sykes and Selina Espiritu and The Deep by Tom Taylor and James Brouwer.

Print copies of GARFIELD: HOMECOMING #1 will be available for sale in June 2018 at local comic book shops (use comicshoplocator.com to find the nearest one) or at the BOOM! Studios webstore. Digital copies can be purchased from content providers, including comiXology, iBooks, Google Play, and the BOOM! Studios app.

John Cena’s Villainous Character Revealed for Nickelodeon’s Rise of the TMNT Series

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Nickelodeon today revealed a first look at the character art of original villain, Baron Draxum, voiced by WWE Superstar John Cena, in the all-new animated series Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Cena will portray the Turtles’ newest nemesis, alongside Omar Miller (Ballers) as Raphael, Ben Schwartz (Parks and Recreation) as Leonardo, Josh Brener (Silicon Valley) as Donatello, Brandon Mychal Smith (You’re The Worst) as Michelangelo, Kat Graham (The Vampire Diaries) as April O’Neil and Eric Bauza (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) as Splinter. Cena unveiled the artwork at Nickelodeon’s Upfront presentation, held today in New York City.

“I’ve always been a fan of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, so getting the opportunity to voice a character, especially the villain Baron Draxum, is truly special,” said Cena.

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An alchemist warrior mutant from the Hidden City, Baron Draxum is the self-proclaimed protector of all mutant-kind. Using ooze, he plans to mutate all of humanity with his insect-like creatures called Oozesquitoes.  Cena’s recurring character will debut in the premiere episode of Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, bowing later this year on Nickelodeon.

Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles follows the band of brothers as they discover new powers and encounter a mystical world they never knew existed beneath the streets of New York City.  The new 26-episode series is co-executive produced by Andy Suriano (character designer, Samurai Jack) and Ant Ward (supervising producer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) at Nickelodeon in Burbank, Calif. Veteran animation industry voice actor Rob Paulsen is voice directing the series.

Viewers can visit the Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles page on Nick.com for more information and follow @TMNT for Turtle Power updates.

‘Apple & Onion’ Pilot Review

In early 2017 it was reported that a new show was greenlit and set to emerge on Cartoon Network sometime in 2018. It’s finally a new year and that means a new opportunity to see what will take place in the cartoon world. Apple & Onion takes place in a world of anthropomorphic food with human emotions and struggles. Though the synopsis seems humorous enough, there are some lessons to be learned from this community of food. A literal food for thought.

In a New York or Chicago-esque big city setting, there’s a pair of produce pals who have a lot to learn about growing up. Though they seem to have everything set by having their own place and all, Apple & Onion are two kids at heart and are often failing at attempts to do adult things. The pilot begins with ‘Wake Up Time’, a song made by Apple that apparently helps the two get into the swing of things in the morning. “♫ Wake up time. 5:49. Feeling fine ’cause it’s wake up time. ♫” It was a funny bit that turned into a slight dilemma for the two when they realize they could’ve woke up at a more realistic 8:49, because it fit with the song as well, and the two ended up oversleeping into the afternoon. When Apple & Onion were awaken by the blaring sound of a notification from their computer, they find out that they were invited to a party by Hotdog and Burger. Not realizing that they were invited on accident, Apple & Onion are thrilled and immediately prints out the information to the party. Onion is even more stoked when he notices his crush French Fry on the guest list. As they practice their dance moves on the sidewalk while wearing a number of flashy toy items, they run into Burger and French Fry. Burger, almost pointing out that Apple & Onion were invited to the party on accident, backtracks and tells them the party is a simple, grown-up dinner party. Apple & Onion are slightly discouraged and realize that they have to grow up. The two go on a crazy journey of adulthood that may take them places where they didn’t expect to go.

Apple & Onion was created by George Gendi, who was a former storyboard artist for The Amazing World of Gumball and Sanjay and Craig. Gendi is also the voice of 1/2 of the main characters, Apple. This pilot was originally screened at the Annecy Festival in 2015. It was eventually uploaded online in May 2016. I applaud Cartoon Network for keeping their mini-sodes releases going, as it shows the evergrowing creativity in the animation industry and gives creators solid platforms where their work could possibly be greenlit onto the big network. It’s great that Apple & Onion is getting a chance to premiere as a full series and there’s no doubt that this show is bound to be some sort of success for the network. It’s slice-of-life humor and unique characterizations is already drawing in a positive impression. I’m working up an appetite for these characters. I mean, the appetite of learning more about their backgrounds and development of course. Also, I have a little prediction about some events that may take place in the series. So French Fry is Onion’s crush, but she was seen walking from the store with Burger when they ran into Apple & Onion. They could be just friends… or something more. What usually goes good with a Burger? That’s right. Now we know things went well for Onion and French Fry at the end of the pilot, but if he goofs off and messes things up, Burger and French Fry just might become the pair that they’re expected to be. Looks like we have the first fan theory.

Interesting fact: Eugene Mirman is the voice of Gene Belcher from Bob’s Burgers. Now he’s voicing the character Burger in Apple & Onion.

Cartoon Network’s New Series ‘Craig of the Creek’ Takes You on a New Adventure

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2018 is here and it’s bound to introduce us to some new faces in animation. In early December 2017, Cartoon Network released the pilot of their upcoming series Craig of the Creek and it is on our list for the must-watch shows in 2018.

Craig of the Creek is a new Slice-of-life comedy that surrounds the adventures of a boy who loves his quests, Craig. He’s accompanied by his two best friends Kelsey and J.P. Kelsey is obviously extremely invested and dedicated to their creek adventures, while J.P. seems to be along for the ride and just happy to be spending time with his friends. Their adventures take place in a “kid utopia” set up in a creek of tree forts and imagination. They call themselves the “Creek Kids”.

“The Creek is a place where we could all be whatever we want. We could be the hero of a book that doesn’t exist. Or just a really misunderstood guy.”

Craig is definitely a kid who is adventurous and doesn’t mind getting dirty or smelly in the process. A memorable scene from the pilot and trailer is the exchange between Craig and his older brother Bernard, a typical teenager who constantly has his face in his phone. Bernard tells Craig that he smells weird. Craig simply replies without a care in the world “I am weird.” Bernard seems to be always putting Craig down for his love of adventures. Earlier in the pilot, when Craig is on his way to the creek, Bernard makes fun of him and his excitement for imagination, unlike his girlfriend Alexis, who is very sweet. A typical older teenage brother who likes to tease his little brother may seem innocent and a norm, but it’s shown to be detrimental to Craig’s creativity when he accidentally drops his trusty staff down the sewer. It all goes in the theme of kids expressing themselves through adventure and joying their childhood while it’s still here. With social media being the center of the attention for the “Musical.ly generation” aka kids who are obsessed with phones, hopefully a show like Craig of the Creek will give them a strong message that it’s okay to put down the technology and go live.

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I’m really looking forward to have more insight on the other characters. To see the other creek kids have such a passion and determination to play in the creek everyday, we can only wonder what their home life is like. Think about when you were about 7-11 years old. How boring was it to just sit at home and watch TV day after day? Your mind was going through the imagination stage and you were ready to explore. Maybe that is why these kids created the creek. Or… could there be a deeper meaning? We’ll see. Craig’s home life seems peachy keen, especially in the final scene where he comes home from the creek. Craig’s mother is sitting at the end of the table listening to Craig’s little sister being adorable and telling her how she put all of her things away when she got home from school. Craig’s dad is seen making dinner in the kitchen. Can we just applaud the show’s creators for a second? For throwing gender norms out of the window and creating a cartoon with a black main character. I said this before and I’ll say it a thousand more times – representation is so important. We will be tuning into Craig of the Creek this year!

By the way, if you’re noticing that Craig of the Creek has a similar animation style to Steven Universe, that’s because the series was created by Matt Burnett and Ben Levin, who had previously worked on Steven Universe. In fact, Steven made a surprise cameo in the pilot. Well, not quite, but his plush doll did when the crew discovered a mountain of toys that fell down in the sewer.

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Craig of the Creek is set to be released sometime this year. An exact release date is yet to be released.

‘The Incredibles 2’ is Getting Released a Year Early While ‘Toy Story 4’ Gets Pushed Back

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If you haven’t heard, yes there will be a sequel to Pixar’s 2004 film The Incredibles, and it’s getting released earlier than you think!

It was reported by Variety today that The Incredibles 2 will be getting a year-early release, prior to being planned to hit the theaters in 2019. You can expect to see the film on it’s new release date: June 15, 2018. This is good news to those like myself who lived for this movie when it’s prequel came out, but before you celebrate, good news comes with sucky news as well. Turns out Pixar decided to push back Toy Story 4 until 2019, while The Incredibles sequel passes ahead. We’re there for you Toy Story fans.

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