Curious George (TV series)
|Created by||Margret Rey
|Developed by||Joe Fallon|
|Directed by||Scott Hemings
|Voices of||Rob Paulsen
|Narrated by||William H. Macy (season 1)
|Opening theme||"Like Curious George!" by Dr. John|
|Ending theme||"Like Curious George!" (instrumental)|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||9|
|No. of episodes||106 (List of episodes)|
|Executive producer(s)||Ron Howard
Universal Animation Studios
|Running time||27 minutes|
|Original channel||PBS Kids|
|Picture format||HDTV 1080i|
|Original run||September 4, 2006– present|
Curious George is an animated television series based on the Curious George children's book series, which features Jeff Bennett as the voice of The Man with the Yellow Hat. Frank Welker, who voiced George in the 2006 feature film, returns here as the voice of Curious George. The show is currently broadcast on PBS Kids. It debuted in 2006, and began its ninth and current season on October 28, 2014.
Curious George is a production of Universal Animation Studios (Universal Pictures released the Curious George film), Imagine Entertainment, and WGBH Boston. Each episode has two short cartoons per half-hour episode and a live-action segment after each story.
The series illustrates and explains various concepts in math and science and each live-action segment shows schoolchildren engaging in experiments that teach the math or science concept featured in the previous cartoon.
At the start of the second season, the Boston Globe noted that Curious George was at the top of the national ratings among children of all ages. The show is also at the top of the ratings among women with children.
When the show was developed, educational advisors suggested using it to teach science, math, and engineering concepts. Episodes are often structured around a "try-fail" series of incidents, which proved to be a good way to show scientific inquiries. There was some controversy about George's eyes, which in the series have whites and pupils (except when George daydreams; his imagined characters are all without scleras); in the original books they are black dots. This gives the very humorous effect of George seeing his dreams in the original "Classic George" style, at a slightly lower resolution than the real world appears to him. This is likely a gentle poke of fun at his (mildly) limited monkey brain. The studio felt the whites and pupils design was necessary to help George express emotions since neither he, nor any of the other animal characters, talks, sings, or reads words.
- The City: George and the Man with the Yellow Hat live in a spacious apartment with a balcony at 7 "N" Avenue located in "The City". It is never directly stated what city they live in, however, it appears to be modeled after New York City. The apartment has a kitchen and large living/dining room with five other rooms. George and the Man with the Yellow Hat each have their own bedrooms. George's room is on the right side of the hall after the Man's room, while the bathroom is across from George's room on the left. The laundry room is the first door on the left side of the hall, while another door next to the kitchen was revealed in Relax! to be a storage closet. The Doorman keeps a pigeon coop on the roof and is the master of Hundley the dog. The apartment is next to a grocery store (#9 N Avenue). It is near Endless Park (which has a small pond), the museum where Professor Wiseman works, and a zoo. Chef Pisghetti's restaurant is nearby, as are a donut shop, Dulson's Toy Store, Mabel's Department Store (likely a portmanteau name referencing Macy's and its erstwhile competitor Gimbel's), a supermarket and a pet shop which are recurring locations.
- The Country: George and the Man with the Yellow Hat vacation in a small house in the country. His neighbors include Bill, who lives next door with his pet bunnies (Bill's parents have not been seen, although his mother's voice is heard once); the Renkins, and Mr. and Mrs. Quint. Many of the characters in this setting have a distinct accent, similar to natives of the state of New Hampshire. The house is near Lake Wanasink Lake, a stream, and a river that eventually flows past the city and to the ocean. There is also a coast fairly close to the house, where George and Bill end up after being swept away in a hot air balloon. (The geography around the country house varies according each story's needs. Compare, for example, the area as shown from the hill in Ski Monkey with that shown in Curious George Flies a Kite, Up, Up, and Away, and Gutter Monkey.)
Characters and voice cast
The setting for most episodes is either the city, where George lives in an apartment building with The Man in the Yellow Hat, or the country, where they share a small house near a lake called Lake Wanasinklake. This allows George to mirror the experiences of kids who live in an urban environment and those who live on farms and in suburbs. A few episodes take place in alternate but familiar settings, like an airport or a train station.
|Season||Episodes||Originally aired (U.S. dates)|
|First aired||Last aired|
|1||30||September 4, 2006||February 23, 2007|
|2||20||September 3, 2007||April 22, 2008|
|3||11||September 1, 2008||April 22, 2009|
|4||9||September 8, 2009||June 14, 2010|
|5||10||September 6, 2010||May 6, 2011|
|6||10||September 3, 2011||April 20, 2012|
|7||6||December 3, 2012||April 24, 2013|
|8||6||February 10, 2014||May 21, 2014|
|9||6||October 28, 2014||N/A|