Jumanji (TV series)
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|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||3|
|No. of episodes||40 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||22 minutes (approx.)|
|Production company(s)||Adelaide Productions
Columbia TriStar Television
Bohbot Kids Network (BKN)
|Distributor||Sony Pictures Television|
|Original network||UPN Kids (1996–98)
|Original release||September 8, 1996 – March 11, 1999|
Jumanji is an American animated television series that was inspired by the movie based on the short story of the same name. The series ran for three seasons from 1996 to 1999. In 1996, it was carried by the UPN Kids network, but later seasons were syndicated by BKN. The series was also shown by CITV in the United Kingdom, TRTÉ in the Republic of Ireland and on Russian RTR channel. It has aired in Pakistan on Cartoon Network in English and currently airs on Filmax in Urdu and on Aruj TV in Pushto.
Jumanji was produced by Adelaide Productions, with character designs by Everett Peck. Episodes of the show are now available on iTunes and Hulu. The show was rerun on Kabillion on Demand, but currently airs on YouTube.
While it followed the movie's plot, there were a few changes such as the exclusion of Bonnie Hunt's character Sarah Whittle and the age and relationship of the policeman Carl Bentley (played by David Alan Grier in the movie) was changed somewhat. Van Pelt appears in some episodes. Each turn, the player was given a "game clue" and then sucked into the jungle until they solved their clue. Robin Williams' character Alan was trapped in Jumanji because he had never seen his clue. Judy and Peter would help Alan try to leave the game providing the characters' motivation during the series. Also, Peter would sometimes be transformed into various animals whenever he cheated, sometimes using the abilities of whatever animal he becomes to an advantage. The kids also free another player trapped longer than Alan. Unlike Alan, he saw his clue but never solved it, but with the kids' help he solves it. He called himself the Master of Jumanji and tried to get other people to solve his clue for him, but once Alan points out that his clue (the Gateless Gate) is an illusion of Jumanji's and he accepts it, it solves his clue.
It's also revealed that like Judy and Peter, Alan would never have been able to survive his first day in Jumanji without help as he possessed poor survival skills at the time. Ironically, his help came in the form of Judy and Peter from the future (to him anyway) who help him survive and teach him a few of the survival tricks they'd learned from him. In return, the 10-year-old version of Alan helps Judy and Peter return to their time, but later hits his head and forgets meeting them. In the first episode, Alan reveals that there have been other players of the game throughout time, many of whom left their toys in the cave which is part of his home, but not all of them survived the game. In the final episode, using a crystal that shows the past, the kids and Alan find his clue by observing his roll and what the game said, and figure out why he never saw it: right after he rolled his mom called him to dinner and as he was leaving, the clue displayed while he had his back turned and he got sucked in. Once he knew his clue, Alan solved it with Judy and Peter's help and escaped Jumanji. Outside, the kids decide to destroy the Jumanji game now that Alan's free.
In the series, it is revealed that Jumanji is sentient to a degree and on occasion has sucked in Judy and Peter if they make it "angry".
- Alan Robert John Jason Parrish III (voiced by Bill Fagerbakke) – Judy and Peter's companion in Jumanji. He has been trapped in the game since he was a boy and can only get out if he sees his original clue. According to the Jumanji database, he got trapped in Jumanji on April 3, 1972 (although in "Young Alan," he says its 1965 and in the live action film it was 1969). In "Young Alan", he was a ten and a half-year-old boy (although in the live-action film, he was twelve-years old), son of the late owner of a now long shut-down shoe factory and friends with future Officer Bentley. Judy and Peter free him at the end of the show by helping him find and solve his original clue. He tries to get free throughout the series and sometimes succeeds, but always ends up trapped back in the game until he's finally freed by solving his long-lost clue. He was freed from the game by pulling a thorn from a lion's paw, which was ironic since he had encountered the same lion not long after first entering the game. It's revealed that he considers Peter and Judy his family and that his worst fear is that he has no clue and will die an old man, trapped in Jumanji with Peter and Judy spending the rest of their lives trying to free him. In the live-action film he was portrayed by Robin Williams but he turned down the animated role since he felt that an animated series that completely ignores the movie was unnecessary.
- Judith "Judy" Shepherd (voiced by Debi Derryberry) – Peter's older sister. She is smart, and gets teased for it, although her intelligence helps them solve problems. She also has boy troubles as shown in various episodes. She refers to Peter as Peabody a lot.
- Peter Shepherd (voiced by Ashley Johnson) - Judy's younger brother. It's stated in Eye of the Sea that Peter is nine years old. Unlike his live-action counterpart who is shy and soft, the animated Peter is immature, quite troubled and has constant trouble with his sister to whom he often shows disrespect. He constantly says "Cool Beans". Although in season 2 and 3, this mostly changes to Nizer. He constantly cheats and transforms into various animals such as a monkey from the live action film and other jungle animals. He can also speak Manji (presumably Alan taught him) and seems to have somewhat of a friendship with them because he saved their leader; Tribal Bob. His worst fear is to be seen naked.
Villains and other supportive cast
In Jumanji, there are many dangerous characters. Many appear only once. The recurring characters include:
- Van Pelt (voiced by Sherman Howard) - The big-game hunter who wants to mount everyone's heads on his wall. He hunts everything, man or beast without remorse. He hates Alan and wants to kill him (referred to as human hunting). His most commonly used word if anything goes wrong is "Blast"! He is killed by Peter in one episode, but Peter becomes him as there must always be a hunter, so Alan and Judy bring him back. He has poor communication skills. One episode revealed that he even shot his maid at the time when Alan, Judy, and Peter snuck into his house to obtain his pith helmet.
- J.H. "Trader" Slick (voiced by Tim Curry) - The wicked merchant of Jumanji who sells items to anyone who can meet the terms of his transactions and has been known to sell simple tools to rare and powerful artifacts to a vast clientele throughout the series. He lives and sells his wares at a trading post located at the heart of the jungle. He always says his whole name when introducing himself, but his middle name changes a lot of time. Some of the items that J.H. Slick has sold include a rare paint that he tricked Alan into buying, the Slick-o-matic, a giant potion to make Peter grow and later the antidote, the Chrono-Repeater, a "Get Out of Jumanji Free" Card that was only valid once, a love potion for Judy, and even a motorboat which allows Peter and Judy to return to their time. If necessary, he becomes a real danger to the trio even when paired up with some of the other villains like his occasional team-ups with Van Pelt and Professor Ibsen. But his biggest part in the series is just a sly cunning swindler (a.k.a. "Honest John Dealership").
- Professor J.S. Ibsen (voiced by William Sanderson) - A mechanical genius, the professor is Jumanji's resident mad scientist, referring to himself as a "Master Builder". In reality he is an android. Tasked to work on behalf of Jumanji, Ibsen operates from a large Industrial Era factory where he designs dangerous Steampunk-style machines and vehicles, creating game perils and nightmarish mechanoid obstacles such as battle-armored rhinos, acid-tongued frogs, and biting "berbalangs". Regarding his machinations, he'll transmits nightly vocal reports to Jumanji itself, broadcasting throughout the jungle. In "The Ultimate Weapon," Ibsen was present at Trader Slick's auctioning of the Transvector of Jumanji (a 'MacGuffin' which is similar to a Lemarchand's box); however he elected to steal the device rather than outright bid for it, intending to destroy the Transvector on account of its potential threat to the entire world of Jumanji. In "Robo-Peter", Ibsen initiated a master scheme to replace all young people in the 'real world' with androids, trapping the humans in the game world; however Alan, Peter and Judy thwart this, resulting in the professor's factory being destroyed. Interestingly, J.S. Ibsen's first and middle name initials are a reference to William Sanderson's renowned character J.F. Sebastian from the 1982 Ridley Scott film Blade Runner, a reclusive genetic engineer who solitarily resides in an abandoned apartment building where he constructs various automatons as "friends". (Of note are the occasional allusions to Sebastian that were incorporated into the series, like Ibsen's saying "Home again, home again" upon arriving at his facility, which was likewise stated by Sebastian in a similar circumstance.) Also, Ibsen's surname is a reference to Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen and his 1893 stage play The Master Builder, the title being re-used for the title of Professor Ibsen's debut episode, "Master Builder".
- Captain Ishmael Squint (voiced by Charles Napier) - The cruel pirate who sails the Jumanji Sea. In "Eye of the Sea", he lost his nose during the battle against the Draken (a one-eyed sea monster which is a cross between a dragon and a kraken) over 20 years ago. Squint's vengeful pursuit of the Draken is remininscent of Captain Ahab in Moby Dick (His name is a reference to the Moby Dick story in that its first line is "Call me Ishmael"). The monster ate Squint alive before Alan stabbed it in the eye, killing it. In "Return of Squint", he later came back alive with two new shipmates. He forces Judy, Peter, and Alan to help him search for treasure at the bottom of the sea with Ibsen's submarine, but get captured by demonic mermaids with his new shipmates while the other three escape. In "The Ultimate Weapon," Squint was present at Trader Slick's auction for the Trans-Vector of Jumanji.
- Mr. Shreve - Squint’s 1st one-eyed shipmate.
- Mr. Shatic - Squint’s 2nd one-legged shipmate.
- Stalker (voiced by Richard Allen) - The demonic Grim Reaper villain who is the Protector of Jumanji. He's also implied to be the personification of the term "Game Over" as in the episode "The Gift" he is seen holding a dead jaguar that Van Pelt was hunting at the time. This is further enforced by the fact that Slick, Ibsen, Van Pelt and a Manji warrior showed extreme fear when confronted by him. He first appeared in "No Dice" when Alan stole the dice from the real world. He wanted the game's dice that Alan stole as, if the dice were ever destroyed, nobody would be able to play Jumanji again. He is apparently destroyed when he is crushed by a piston, but is revealed to have survived. In "The Gift", Stalker brought Van Pelt, Trader Slick, and Professor Ibsen together to kill the kids after Alan was poisoned by a centipede as Peter threatened to destroy Jumanji if Alan died. He is again defeated after being shoved down a waterfall by Alan, but survives again. His name and purpose was never revealed in the show.
- Aston Philips (voiced by Dabney Coleman) - The greedy adventurer. He considers himself the biggest and bravest and betrays even his agents Alan, Judy and Peter. His catchphrase is "Aston Philips has done it again". Though he was thought to have died in the Temple of Riddles in "The Palace of Clues," he actually survived and resurfaced when it came to looking for the Golden Goblet of Jumanjicon. He encountered Alan, Judy, and Peter again in their search for the artifact and even reclaimed his compass that Trader Slick swindled him into trading. After drinking from the Golden Goblet of Jumanjicon, he reverted to childhood form.
- Ludwig Von Richtor (voiced by Alan Oppenheimer) - The German hunter who is the rival of Van Pelt. He competed with Van Pelt in hunting Alan. In "The Ultimate Weapon," Ludwig Von Richtor was present at Trader Slick's auction for the Trans-Vector of Jumanji.
- The Judge (voiced by Edward Asner) - An ape-like lawkeeper that presided over the trial of Alan when he was accused of stealing the Singing Orb from an ape. However, he is not a benevolent Judge as he condemns all without regard to innocence. He is also very greedy as shown when he takes an orb from the Fludgels and is sucked into it. His only weapon is "Justice" which is a giant gorilla. In "The Ultimate Weapon," the Judge was present at Trader Slick's auction for the Trans-Vector of Jumanji. He threatened Slick with serious charges if it was not the genuine article.
- Flint (voiced by Charlie Schlatter) - An evil wizard created by Jumanji to mess with Judy's mind. Turns people into stone, but is defeated by Judy when she reflects his own attack back at him, freeing his victims and turning him to stone. He is presumably destroyed when his statue falls thousands of feet to the ground.
- Queen Gina (voiced by Cathy Moriarty) - The leader of the Jamazons (which is short for "Jumanji Amazons"). She tries to marry Alan, but is defeated by Aunt Nora. In "The Ultimate Weapon," Queen Gina was present at Trader Slick's auction for the Trans-Vector of Jumanji but did not take part in the bidding for the device, instead she seemed interested in reclaiming Alan (probably to try and marry him again).
- Black Ant Queen - The Black Ant leader of Jumanji. In "The Ultimate Weapon," the Black Ant Queen was present at Trader Slick's auction for the Trans-Vector of Jumanji but did not take part in the reclaiming of the device.
- Red Ant Queen - The Red Ant leader of Jumanji. In "The Ultimate Weapon," the Red Ant Queen was present at Trader Slick's auction for the Trans-Vector of Jumanji but did not take part in the reclaiming of the device.
- Sand King (voiced by Jim Cummings) - The sand monster who is the ruler of the Sand Kingdom and tries to get a chest of cursed gold from Judy, Peter and Alan. He gets destroyed by Peter with a squirt gun. In "The Ultimate Weapon," the Sand King was present at Trader Slick's auction for the Trans-Vector of Jumanji.
- The Manji Tribe (voiced by unknown) - The Manji tribe are fearsome bloodthirsty warriors whom no man they call friend (although they have shown tolerance towards Alan, Peter and Judy). They are led by Tribal Bob. They don't just wear tribal masks, they are tribal masks. It is implied that a Manji warrior can only change back if he willingly removes the mask himself as in the same case with Peter when, in one episode, he joins them when he becomes more and more enamored with their lifestyle. It's also heavily implied in one episode that the Manjis were all once humans themselves, possibly child players who decided to stay in Jumanji, finally gave up solving the clues they were shown and sought to leave their own world far behind. Despite the primitive way they communicate and vocalize their native language (which is composed of squeaks, clicks, buzzes, whistles and hand gestures) speaking Manji is very complicated as they have more than 500 words for pain as Peter tells Judy in one episode.
- The Lion - The Lion was a large fierce lion who chased Alan from the moment he entered Jumanji and had being doing so ever since. He first appeared in "Young Alan" where he was seen chasing Alan when he was 10 years old for the first time. In the last episode "Goodbye Jumanji" it was revealed that the Lion was part of Alan's clue and the reason it chased for years was because it had a thorn in its paw which caused it extreme pain and so Alan built up enough courage to remove it resulting in his clue being solved but not before the lion gave him a thank you lick before leaving. Although many other lions have appeared in the show frequently they weren't the same one.
- Aunt Nora Shepherd (voiced by Melanie Chartoff) - Judy and Peter's aunt and legal guardian. She is taken into the game a couple of times, but the kids convince her it was a dream. Later after Alan is finally freed by Judy and Peter, there are indications of a possible romantic relationship between the two. She is a therapist and does aerobics which allow her in Jumanji to defeat the Jamazon Queen. While she thinks her adventures in Jumanji are a dream, they seem to help her lighten up if only for a little while afterwards.
- The Master of Jumanji (voiced by Tony Jay) - A former player who got stuck in Jumanji years before Alan because he couldn't solve his clue. His clue was first seen written on the wall in the Palace of Lost Clues.
- Officer Carl Bentley (voiced by Richard Allen) - A police officer that patrols Judy and Peter's neighborhood.
- Rock (voiced by Pamela Adlon) - A school bully that picks on Peter.
- Dead-Eye (voiced by Kevin Schon) - A school bully that is friends with Rock.
- Dorothy "Dottie" McGrail (voiced by Eileen Brennan) - A flying ace who somehow managed to fly into Jumanji in her plane via a hole in the sky. She, along with Alan, Peter and Judy, help save the eggs and village of a race of bird-people called Jumockis which were under threat from Ibsen in his dirigible.
Animals of Jumanji
- African buffalo
- Black panther
- Giant clam
- Horned owl
- Electric eels
- Indian rhinoceros
- Komodo Dragon
- Mole rat
- Mud daubers
- Snapping turtle
- Three headed dog
- Water buffalo
- Bill Fagerbakke – Alan Parrish
- Debi Derryberry – Judy Shepherd
- Ashley Johnson – Peter Shepherd
- Pamela Adlon – Rock
- Melanie Chartoff – Aunt Nora Shepherd
- Tim Curry – Trader Slick
- Sherman Howard – Hunter Van Pelt
- Richard Allen – Stalker, Officer Bentley, Tribal Bob
- William Sanderson – Professor Ibsen
- Kevin Schon - Dead-Eye
- Beverly Archer - Peter's Teacher
- Edward Asner - The Judge, Repairman
- René Auberjonois - Professor Alsip
- Bob Bergen - Science Teacher
- Cam Clarke - Adult Peter Shepherd, Justin Galloway
- Dabney Coleman - Ashton Phillips
- Jim Cummings - Sand King
- Tony Jay - Master
- Bob Joles - Coach Bartlett
- Maurice LaMarche -
- Roddy McDowall - Furvish
- Cathy Moriarty - Queen Gina
- Charles Napier - Captain Ishmael Squint
- Alan Oppenheimer - Ludwig Von Richtor
- Bibi Osterwald - Ms. Desmona
- Charlie Schlatter - Flint, Wade Riley
- Susan Blu - Dialogue Director
On August 28, 2012, Sony Pictures released Jumanji: The Complete First Season on DVD in region 1. This was a Manufacture-on-Demand (MOD) release, available exclusively in the US and is part of the Sony Pictures Choice Collection in partnership with Warner Bros. online store. It is also available through Amazon.com and their CreateSpace MOD program.
- "Amazon.com: JUMANJI - THE ANIMATED SERIES - SEASON 1 (2 Discs): Bill Fagerbakke, Debi Derryberry, Ashley Johnson, Tim Curry, Sherman Howard, Bob Hathcock, Steve Ressel, Cathy Malkasian: Movies & TV". amazon.com. Retrieved 12 August 2015.
- "Jumanji DVD news: Announcement for Jumanji - The Animated Series: Season 1 - TVShowsOnDVD.com". tvshowsondvd.com. Retrieved 12 August 2015.