Thursday, November 20, 2014

Five Classic British Kids Shows Getting Reboots Soon

The television programmes you grow up with can prove to be a big part of your childhood. They can create lasting impressions that stay with you your whole life, and even in some small ways effect the kind of person you become. When you have children or young relatives, it can be tempting to try and introduced them to the things you loved when you were their age, in the hope they will feel the same way. If however you happen to be a TV producer or commissioner, you have the chance to do this on a much larger scale. Which possibly explains why many of them choose to bring back the shows they themselves watched when they were children. Over the past few months, several classic UK Kids shows from years past have been announced to get new versions for a new generation. How many do you remember?


Superted


Mike Young's cuddly superhero and his spotty alien friend (voiced by late Doctor Who star Jon Pertwee) were a mainstay of British kids TV in the 80s. Originally broadcast in Welsh, the series was later dubbed into English and shown on the BBC, and even made it to the Disney Channel in the States. The reboot is being targeted for a 2016 début, and according to Young will ditch some of the less politically correct elements such as "a gun-slinging cowboy"and "a flamboyantly gay skeleton".



The Clangers


Peter Firmin and the much missed Oliver Postgate's original 1969 stop-motion series was made in a wonderfully lo-fi British way- all 26 original episodes were made by two blokes in a shed in Kent. Featuring the titular knitted, pink mouse-like creatures living on the moon, it's charm has endured long after the original run ended. Thanks to DVD and constant showings on Nick Junior (alongside fellow Smallfilms production Bagpuss) it's enthralling new generations to this day. The 2015 revival will be a larger scale affair (costing £5 million), but with Firmin producing alongside Oliver Postgate's son Daniel Postgate, hopes are high the original's spirit will be preserved. Best of all, Monty Python star and national treasure Michael Palin will be narrating the new series, due to air on Cbeebies next year.




Danger Mouse


The world's greatest secret agent rodent amused kids and grown-ups alike from 1981-1992, thanks to the razor-sharp scripts. Hopefully history will repeat itself when 52 new episodes hit CBBC  starting next year, in a co-production with Freemantle and Ireland's Boulder media. Comedian Alexander Armstrong and Kevin Eldon will be taking over the lead roles originally filled by David Jason and Terry Scott respectively in the Cosgrove Hall original. They're big shoes to fill undoubtedly, but we're excited to see how it turns out.




Thunderbirds


Gerry Anderson's  Supermarionation classic may have been made in the 60s, but it's adventure-filled storyline have proved popular enough that it's enjoyed a revival for a new generation every decade or so. The original wasn't animated (it was made with the puppetry style that inspired Team America: World Police) but the latest revival is dropping the puppets for shiny CG animation, which will be mixed with live-action model work with Lord Of the Rings effects-house Weta Workshop. The new series entitled Thunderbirds Are Go! is due to début on ITV in 2015, exactly 50 years after the original aired.




BananaMan


Bananaman was a British parody of super-hero comics, that originally appeared in the comic Nutty in 1980 (and later the much better known Dandy). It featured a schoolboy named Eric who transformed into the adult superhero whenever he ate a banana and fought super-villains, many of whom were parodies of classic Marvel and DC baddies. The BBC TV adaptation ran from 1983-1986, and featured the voices of comedy team The Goodies. Whereas all the rest of the series on this list are being produced in animated form, Bananaman is being adapted into a live-action movie due in 2015. Many people thought it was a joke at first, but it seems to be for real. In a time where Superheroes are more popular than ever, maybe this is an idea who's time has come.


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