Crowing about the success of its new adult block, Cartoon Network will expand
its overall originals roster this year by launching two new animated series.
Cartoon has green-lit six half-hour episodes of Whatever Happened to Robot
Jones?, which will premiere in July, while the second new show, Codename:
Kids Next Door, joins the channel's lineup in November, officials said at an
upfront presentation for the press.
Viewers chose Kids Next Door, one of 10 pilots in competition to go to
series, in what amounted to a landslide vote last summer. A total of 13 episodes
have been ordered.
Cartoon -- which tied for second place in the primetime ratings last year --
also has more than 100 new episodes of original programs in production for
2002-2003, including 26 episodes each of Courage the Cowardly Dog and
Ed, Edd n Eddy.
After rolling out its 'Adult Swim' block in September, Cartoon is looking to
further buttress its appeal among older viewers. Indeed, Adult Swim has posted
67 percent ratings growth among adults 18 through 34 since its launch.
One of the cornerstones of the block, Harvey Birdman, Attorney-at-Law,
will return in July with 20 new episodes.
The network has also acquired some off-network shows for Adult Swim -- namely
Home Movies,with 13 new episodes,and Mission
While Cartoon doesn't have a preschool block per se, it has acquired a show
that will have appeal to that younger group, according to general manager Jim
Hit Japanese series Hamtaro, about a 10-year-old girl and her gang of
'precocious' hamsters, debuts in July.
The show has evidently sparked a craze in that one out of four kids who have
watched the show in Japan have bought hamsters, according to Cartoon