Armed with renewed support from parent MTV Networks and its first-ever
general manager, digital network Nicktoons will relaunch Oct. 6 with a updated
look and new, original programming.
Since debuting in 1999, the service has been a repository for aging
Nickelodeon animated series such as Doug and Angry Beavers. But
Nicktoons’ recently named vice president and GM Keith Dawkins said the service
would eventually feature new and original animation as it looks to strike home
with kids aged 6-14.
Network executives maintained that original programming will help Nicktoons
to gain a leg up on digi-net competitors Toon Disney and Boomerang, which
feature mostly library fare from progenitors Disney Channel and Cartoon Network,
Beginning Oct. 6, the network will also bow two originally produced vignettes
that will bridge breaks between shows.
Johnnie Talk will feature an animated character that interviews people
who have worked on Nicktoons, while Stuff’d will focus on the lives of
stuffed animals in a wooded cabin that come to life when human hunters
In addition, Nicktoons plans to premiere five new series by 2004 -- two
originals and three acquired shows never before seen in the United States.
By 2005, original programming will represent 25% of its lineup.
The network will also benefit from some of the programming changes at its
parent. As Nick rolls out more episodes from its current series stable such as
SpongeBob SquarePants, Jimmy Neutron, Fairly OddParents and
My Life as a Teenage Robot, Nicktoons will be the primary outlet for the
network’s still-popular shows such as the Rugrats.
Along with new programming, Nicktoons will also receive an on-air facelift,
with a new logo and on-air graphics created by a division of Klasky Csupo Inc.,
the studio that created such cartoons as Rugrats, The Wild
Thornberrys, As Told by Ginger and Rocket