Denver, the Last Dinosaur
|Denver, the Last Dinosaur|
Title card of Denver, the Last Dinosaur
|Created by||Peter Keefe|
|Country of origin||
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||50 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||30 min|
World Events Productions|
Centre National Cinématographie
La Ville D'Angoulême
|Original release||September 12– November 22, 1988|
Denver, the Last Dinosaur is an American-French animated series produced by World Events Productions and Groupe IDDH. It was nationally syndicated throughout the United States in 1988 with reruns airing until 1990. Episodes often focused on issues of conservation, ecology, and friendship.
The show ran for two seasons, as the dinosaur boom that had followed The Land Before Time waned, causing viewership to drop. The series received a recommendation from the National Educational Association.
The show revolves around the adventures of Denver, the last dinosaur, who was released from his egg by a group of California teens: Jeremy, Mario, Shades, Wally, and Casey, along with tag-along older sister, Heather. The kids taught Denver the finer points of skateboarding and other pastimes while protecting him from rock concert promoter Morton Fizzback who wanted to use the dinosaur to make money.
The series begins when Jeremy, while preparing for his Natural History test, and his friends visit the La Brea Tar Pits – a place in Los Angeles (which is spread over a large area and contains a large collection of extinct animal and plant fossils) and go to the Museum. At the museum, the friends encounter a gang of bullies. The friends escape the bullies by hiding behind a fence near the tar pits. Behind the fence they find a pit that contains a large prehistoric egg. As the friends are playing with the egg it suddenly cracks and a green friendly dinosaur emerges who, inexplicably, understands English. The kids name him Denver after they spot an advertisement for the city of Denver on a passing bus.
The children decide to keep Denver and to keep his existence a secret. Denver is first hidden in a pool house at Wally's home. After Wally's sister discovers Denver they move Denver to the old school gym. After a while, Denver gets kidnapped by the manager Morton Fizzback. Morton puts Denver on a stage in front of an audience in order to become rich.
When the children confront Morton about his abduction, he becomes paranoid that someone might find out that Denver is a real dinosaur. At the end, Denver is sold to a scientist named Professor Funt, who wants to examine and experiment on him, and use him to become famous. Eventually, everything turns out fine and Denver gets to return to the gang and rescue them from Nick and his thugs.
In addition to his natural skills and abilities, Denver can also, with the help of a piece from the shell of his egg, take the gang with him back to the time whence he came.
- Jack Angel
- Adam Carl
- Cameron Clarke
- Brian Cummings
- Patrick Fraley
- Tress MacNeille
- Robert F. Paulsen
- Kath Soucie
- Franklin Welker
- Denver the Last Dinosaur is the main protagonist of the show and a close friend of the gang. He is a green Corythosaurus, the last of his kind, who has proved to be a good and loyal friend. Denver first met Wally, Shades, Jeremy, and Mario when he hatched from his egg when the boys hid behind a fence in the tar pit from Nick and his friends. He surprisingly understands English. Denver got his name when the boys spotted an advertisement for the city of Denver on the side of a bus. He is a rock'n roll music fan and likes to play electric guitar, ride skateboard and eat potato chips. Voiced by Pat Fraley.
- Wally Adams – Boy who takes Denver in, Denver's closest friend. He cares for various animals – including Rocky (his pup), 3 cats, Ears (a rabbit), and a parrot. Voiced by Adam Carl.
- Jeremy Anderson – the most intelligent and mature guy among the gang. He acts cerebral and possesses extensive knowledge about a wide variety of subjects, including the origin and habits of dinosaurs. Voiced by Adam Carl.
- Mario – A brown skin and hair teen with an enormous ego. Voiced by Cam Clarke.
- Shades – A cool teen who always wears sunglasses (where his name is derived from). Voiced by Cam Clarke.
- Casey – Youngest of the gang, she is a machinist and often help the other members with the technical problems. She is light brown skin and hair and had a crush on Mario, more obvious in the first season. Voiced by Kath Soucie.
- Heather Adams – Wally's older, and sometimes annoying, sister. She has blonde hair in a ponytail. Voiced by Kath Soucie.
- Rocky – Wally's pup.
- Chet – Heather's boyfriend, voiced by Rob Paulsen.
- Freddy Facknitts – A teenage genius who is also a fan of comic books, and has a strong, though somewhat comical, sense of justice. He was originally hired by Morton Fizzback to conduct an experiment on Denver's tar egg shell, but later helps out Denver and the gang, and provides technical support.
- Morton Fizzback – Drawn and voiced as an obvious characterization of actor Rodney Dangerfield, Fizzback is an arrogant and greedy rock concert promoter, voiced by Brian Cummings.
- Professor Funt – Evil scientist, sometimes works with Morton, voiced by Brian Cummings.
- Nick – Leader of three other bullies, Curt, Scott, and Rod, who cause trouble for the boys, voiced by Rob Paulsen.
Merchandise and home media releases
Knott's Berry Farm offered a Denver promotional tie-in with its new Kingdom of the Dinosaurs attraction (which would later take its last rider in 2004), as did Ralston Cereals with its new brand Dinersaurs (which sold poorly and was discontinued by the end of 1988).
Various episodes of the series were released on VHS by Fries Home Video.
World Events Productions released two DVD volumes through their Voltron.com website. The first volume included the hour-long pilot and the following eight episodes. The second volume includes 10 episodes. World Events Productions had the complete series on YouTube; it was removed on December 31, 2010, because of synchronizing problems, but as of February 2012, all but three episodes had been restored. On February 11, 2011, World Events Productions released the complete series on Hulu.
- Australia: Nine Network (1989–1994) (as part of C'mon Kids and The C Company, Max (1995) and Nickelodeon (1995–1996)
- Brazil: Globo
- Chile: Etc...TV
- China: CCTV-1
- Croatia: HRT 1
- Denmark: Kanal 2.
- Ethiopia: ETV
- Finland: MTV3
- France : FR3, France 3 (1991–1993) and Direct 8
- Galicia (from Spain): TVG (as part of Xabarín Club)
- Germany: RTL and RTL II
- Gibraltar: GBC TV.
- Greece: New Channel, Seven-X
- Hungary: Magyar Televízió 1 (the national TV)
- India: Denver appeared as Danu in the Indian version of the television series Danu Danasur that aired first on Doordarshan on 9 June 1996. Local producer of the series was National Centre of films for Children and Young People. The title track of the series Chipkali ke nana hain was written by lyricist Gulzar. It was retelecast on DD Malayalam (on Sundays after the 4pm movie) and Surya TV.
- Israel: Channel 1
- Italy: Italia 1
- Kazakhstan: Khabar TV
- Kenya: KTN
- Lebanon: LBC
- Macedonia: MTV1 „Денвер – Последниот диносаурус“ („Denver – Posledniot dinosaurus“)
- Mexico: XHGC-TV (Canal 5)
- Netherlands: FilmNet
- New Zealand : Channel 3 GZR
- Pakistan: Pakistan Television (PTV 1)
- Poland: Tele 5, TVN, TVP, RTL 7, Top Kids
- Portugal: Canal 1, Canal Panda
- Philippines: Island's TV 13 (now IBC 13)
- Romania: TVR1 (1990), TVR 2 (1991), Antena 1 (1998–1999)
- Serbia: TVNS Plus
- South Africa: TV1, TV2
- South Korea: SBS, EBS
- Sweden: TV3, Kanal 5 and FilmNet.
- Taiwan: Taiwan Television Enterprise, Ltd.(TTV)
- Turkey: Kanal D
- United Arab Emirates : Channel 33
- United Kingdom: Galaxy (1990), TV-am (1992), Nickelodeon, Sky Channel as part of Fun Factory Saturday and Sunday morning programming (1990–1993) and Carlton Kids (1998–2000).
- United States: Univision (late 1990s), Qubo
- Venezuela: Venevisión
- Zimbabwe: ZTV
In 2014, listing it among twelve 1980s cartoons that supposedly did not deserve remembrance, io9 described it as "a cartoon about coolness and friendship created by a marketing committee of old white men who had never experienced either of them before."
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- 'The Complete Series' Front and Rear Box Art, Bonus Material Archived 2014-07-18 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on April 12, 2017
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