great robots & toys
from the space age




ReBoot

Entire classic series now on DVD! Alphanumeric!

seasons one and two

seasons three and four

entire series and extras



ReBoot was the smash hit of the 1994 SatAm kids TV season. It was also the first weekly series made entirely on computer (CGI). The SF animated adventure show ran on ABC in the US, YTV in Canada, and in numerous other countries. After the second season, it was pulled off the air when Disney bought ABC, along with other non-Disney shows. There was a third season, never seen in the US until 1999, when Cartoon Network showed all three seasons. A few early shows made it out on VHS, and season three was released on four DVDs. A fourth season, released on DVD, actually consisted of two feature length films. Finally, in 2011, ReBoot returned, when seasons one and two were at last released in a DVD set. In the meantime, it's also been released as a Playstation video game, ReBoot the Ride, which was named "Best New Attraction" in 1997, and "ReBoot: Journey into Chaos" for the IMAX Ridefilm motion simulator. Bill Gates indicted ReBoot into the Smithsonian in 1998 as the first 100 per cent computer-generated weekly TV series.


Above: Frisket and Enzo, detail from the cover of a coloring book.





Above left: Irwin toys from season three: Captain Capacitor and the Web Mare. Right: Lieutenant Chauncey and Armoured Binome Carrier.
Below left: carded Commander Dot action figure. Middle: carded Hack and Slash action figures.
Right: carded vehicles (shown above).











Above left: DVDs for season four, and the fourth volume of season three. Middle: Bob as Matrix from season three. one of five large, articulated action figures released by Irwin in 2001, shown with two variations of Frisket. Right: Six cards from the 1995 Fleer Ultra ReBoot card series. Below: four pages of dazzling ReBoot toys from the Irwin Toy catalog.

ReBoot was created by Mainframe Entertainment, Vancouver BC.  Mairi Welman, Director of Communications, commented on ReBoot's return to US TV in 1999:*

"The Cartoon Network has exclusive rights for the first year, and exclusive cable rights for the second year. They bought all three seasons--39 episodes, and are running it in the Toonami block, five days a week."

"Every day it was off the air we got mail from people asking when ReBoot was coming back. The lasting power of this series has been quite phenomenal."





"Disney bought ABC and all the independent productions had their contracts cancelled. The really ironic thing is that when we went into syndication after that, the Disney-owned ABC channel in LA bought ReBoot and aired it."

"Irwin was the original licensee for manufacture of figures and toys for ReBoot, and they did season one and two figures. Because we were unable to sell ReBoot season three into the US at the time it was airing in Canada, the licensees dropped away. In this industry licensees are not interested in a property that is not going to be airing in the US, pure and simple. The Canadian market is simply too small. So, because we didn't get a broadcaster in the US, the toy, poster, and apparel contracts for the 1997 season didn't get renewed."


"Lots of companies are interested in the toy contracts now. But it depends on what broadcaster you go with what company makes the toys; it's all political and it's all tied up between the networks. Certain companies work with certain broadcasters."

"So there was a whole third season that was unsupported in merchandising and licensing that we actually ended up losing money on, because it was fairly high end."

"For the third season, though, we were out from under the network Broadcast Standards and Practices yoke."





"When we were on ABC we really had to dumb the show down. They wouldn't let us show any imminent jeopardy, nobody was allowed to be shown getting hurt or killed. The shows were all one-offs, which is to say that the story line didn't carry on; they were aiming it at really young kids."

"We went with it because we got it on the air; we got the first season produced. Year two we pushed it a bit because we were in syndication, but that was when all the broadcasters were going through the big process with Congress in the states, and the whole broccoli TV issue. So the stations were under a risk, and they wouldn't let us go too far."

"Then we got to season three. We didn't have a US broadcaster for it, and we said, let's go fo it, let's make ReBoot what we always thought it should be, which is an action-adventure series for kids age eight and up. Season three is a vast departure from seasons one and two. American fans have been pleasantly shocked and surprised."

"People who have seen it love it. It's a bit darker; it's a continuing story arc through all sixteen episodes, which breaks down into four chapters of four episodes each, and it's got a lot more imminent jeopardy in it. It's like a sci-fi series. Our goal was to see season three into the US because we needed to make that money from the show. Hopefully it will do as well there as it did elsewhere. If it does, maybe Cartoon Network or someone will say, "How about another season?"

Mainframe Entertainment was also the producer of Beast Wars Transformers, the top-rated  syndicated kids' series of the late '90s, and  War Planets/ Shadowraiders, based on Trendmasters toys.

* Excerpts from "Due South: An FPS Interview with Mairi Welman" by Gord Wilson, © Gord Wilson, from FPS: Frames Per Second, Number 16, 1999, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Used by permission.



planet zero
<
>
Robot store