Little Einsteins

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Little Einsteins
Disney's Little Einsteins logo.svg
Genre
Created byDouglas Wood
Developed byDouglas Wood[a]
Written byJeff Borkin (head writer)[a]
Directed byAndy Thom (supervising, season 2)[a]
Creative directorOlexa Hewryk (season 1)
Voices of
Theme music composerBilly Straus
Composers
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons2 (excluding 2 specials)
No. of episodes67 (including the aforementioned two specials) (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producers
ProducerKris Greengrove[a]
Running time24 minutes
Production companies
Release
Original networkPlayhouse Disney
Picture formatNTSC
Original releaseOctober 9, 2005 (2005-10-09) –
December 22, 2009 (2009-12-22)

Little Einsteins is an American interactive animated children's television series produced by Curious Pictures for The Baby Einstein Company (which, at the time, was owned by Disney). It was created by Douglas Wood and Eric Weiner. The series started out with a direct-to-video movie, Our Huge Adventure, that was released on August 23, 2005. The full series premiered on Playhouse Disney on October 9, 2005, and the final episode aired on December 22, 2009.

Sixty-seven episodes were produced. The educational children series was developed for television by Douglas Wood who created the concept and characters, and a subsequent team headed by Emmy Award-winning director Olexa Hewryk and JoJo's Circus co-creator Eric Weiner, and co-produced by Curious Pictures and The Baby Einstein Company (then Disney-owned).

The first regular episode of Little Einsteins premiered in the UK on October 3, 2005, and in the US on October 9, 2005. The final regular episode was originally broadcast (in the US) on December 22, 2009, and a standalone special entitled “Rocket’s Firebird Rescue” was released on June 19, 2010, marking the series’ official end. The series continued to air in reruns afterward, including after Playhouse Disney was rebranded as Disney Junior on February 14, 2011, through March 25, 2019. Later, this show was added to Disney+.[1]

Overture[edit]

Little Einsteins was designed to teach the target demographic art and music appreciation by integrating famous or culturally significant art works (usually, but not exclusively, paintings) and classical music (most typically from the Baroque, Classical, and Romantic eras) into the scenery, plot and soundtrack of each episode.

The show is also designed to encourage viewer interaction (such as encouraging the audience to pat their knees, gesture or sing along to help the characters succeed on their "mission").

Episodes[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast airedNetwork
1291August 23, 2005Direct-to-video
28October 9, 2005November 20, 2006Playhouse Disney
24039January 17, 2007December 22, 2009Playhouse Disney
1June 19, 2010Direct-to-video

Characters[edit]

(From top to bottom) Leo, June, Quincy, Annie (from the first season), Rocket

Main[edit]

  • Leo (voiced by Jesse Schwartz in the US, singing voice provided by Harrison Chad and Piers Stubbs in the UK) is a 6-year-old boy who is Annie's older brother and the largest member of the group. He is the leader of the Little Einsteins and pilots Rocket. His main talent is conducting, and his most prized possession is his conductor's baton. He has tan skin, red hair and green eyes. He wears green glasses, a black shirt with an orange stripe, orange cargo shorts, white socks, and orange, black and white gym shoes.
  • June (voiced by Erica Huang in the US and Poppy Frair in the UK) is a 6-year-old Chinese-American ballerina who loves to dance. She has pale skin, short dark brown hair and brown eyes. She wears a pink headband, a purple dress with a pink belt, light blue pearl earrings and crimson ballet slippers but within white socks in the Season 2 episode "Show and Tell".
  • Quincy (voiced by Aiden Pompey in the US and Mitchell Zhangazgha in the UK) is a 5-year-old African-American musician who plays a variety of instruments, including the violin, flute, and trumpet. At some point in most episodes, Quincy exclaims, "I cannot believe it!" when surprised or amazed. He has brown skin, dark brown curly hair and brown eyes. He wears a red and blue baseball cap, a yellow shirt with green long sleeves, blue pants, and red and white shoes.
  • Annie (voiced by Natalia Wojcick in the US and Kirsty Hickey in the UK) is a 4-year-old girl who is Leo's younger sister and the smallest member of the team group. She is a young singer who loves to sing and the only character who has piloted Rocket alone. She likes singing and animals, including dolphins and horses, but has arachnophobia. In Season 1, Annie's singing posture is with one hand up in the air and the other hand on her chest, then she comes to own a silver microphone white a purple speaker and orange musical notes after winning it in a singing contest in the Season 2 episode "Annie, Get Your Microphone!" When she wishes to urgently point something out to the team or when she is surprised or amazed, her usual phrase is "Look, look, look!" She has fair skin, blonde hair tied into two pigtails with held by her pink hair bows and blue eyes. In Season 1, she wears a green blouse, a blue overall dress, and magenta and white shoes. In Season 2, green is not longer available, so she decides to wear a light blue blouse, a pink overall dress, white socks, and blue and white shoes.
  • Rocket is the Little Einsteins' main mode of transportation, as well as their friend. He has an array of tools and accessories that help the team complete their missions. He also has the ability to transform into any other form of transportation, like a submarine or a train. He communicates by making marimba noises. He is capable of going to outer space.

Recurring[edit]

  • Big Jet is a blue fighter plane which appears to resemble a Soviet MiG-29. Big Jet has been known to ruin parties and steal things to keep for himself. Big Jet hates springtime, owing to his being allergic to flowers, as seen in the episode "Oh Yes, Oh Yes, It's Springtime". He also hates losing, as seen in "The Great Sky Race Rematch". In the episode, "Show and Tell", Big Jet gets revenge on Rocket and the Little Einsteins for defeating him in all of his appearances by stealing their favorite things. He befriends them later, however.
  • Little Mouse, The Good Knight, and Joey the Kangaroo appeared individually in their own episodes, "The Mouse and The Moon", "The Good Knight and The Bad Knight", and "Jump For Joey", respectively, and collectively in the three episodes' crossover-sequel, "Rocket Soup".
  • The Three Little Pigs appeared in three episodes: "Farmer Annie", "Super Fast", and "Build It Rocket".
  • Melody is a musical pet that Leo helped find her ticket for the pet train in "Melody the Music Pet". After boarding the train, Melody is brought to live with Leo. She reappeared in "Melody and Me", where Leo must save her after her hot air balloon flies away.
  • The Bad Knight is the knight who imprisoned the Good Knight. In the episode "The Good Knight and The Bad Knight" he rides a cello that acts like a horse. At the end of the episode, it is revealed that he was under a magic spell that made him a bad knight. after rescuing the Good Knight, he himself transforms back into a good knight. In the episode "Rocket Soup," he helps the Little Einsteins get peas to make Rocket Soup for Rocket to eat.
  • The Little Red Train is a good friend of Annie, and despite his small size, he is very determined and very strong. He appeared in the episodes "Go West, Young Train" and "Annie, Get Your Microphone!".

Others[edit]

  • Ring only appeared in the episode "Ring Around the Planet" when it fell off Saturn and landed near June's garden. Ring is also a great dancer just like June which makes them and the rest of the Little Einsteins friends, with the team bringing it back home to Saturn.
  • Grandma Rocket only appeared in the episode "Little Red Rockethood" and is the grandmother of Rocket. She shares a similar appearance to Rocket but is purple and has glasses and gray hair. Just as Rocket, she communicates by marimba sounds.

Production[edit]

In the UK version, the Little Einsteins are voiced by Poppy Lee Friar (June), Piers Stubbs (Leo), Kirsty Hickey (Annie), and Mitchell Zhangazha (Quincy), and certain American terms are converted to the British vernacular: for example, changing mentions of "Candy Canes" to mentions of "Sweetie Sticks."

Additional home and streaming media[edit]

DVD Releases Included episodes Release date
Our Huge Adventure "Our Huge Adventure" (later separated into the episodes "A Brand New Outfit" and "The Missing Invitation") August 23, 2005
Team Up for Adventure "How We Became the Little Einsteins: The True Story", "I Love to Conduct" and "Rocket Safari" April 25, 2006
Mission Celebration! "The Birthday Machine", "Go West, Young Train" and "The Birthday Balloons" August 22, 2006
The Legend of the Golden Pyramid "The Legend of the Golden Pyramid", "Dragon Kite" and "Annie and the Little Toy Plane" February 27, 2007
Rocket's Firebird Rescue "Rocket's Firebird Rescue" and "Rocket Soup" August 21, 2007
Race for Space "The Treasure Behind the Little Red Door", "Super Fast!" and "The Great Sky Race Rematch" February 19, 2008
Flight of the Instrument Fairies "Flight of the Instrument Fairies", "The Puppet Princess", "The Glass Slipper Ball", "Little Red Rockethood" August 5, 2008
The Christmas Wish "Show and Tell", "The Christmas Wish", "The Wind-Up Toy Prince", "The Northern Night-Light" October 14, 2008
Go to Europe (US release) "Hello, Cello", "Silly Sock Saves the Circus", "Go Team!" August 31, 2009
O Yes, it's Springtime (UK release with US voices) "Farmer Annie", "O Yes, O Yes, it's Springtime", "Annie and the Beanstalk" September 1, 2009
Fire Truck Rocket's Blastoff "Fire Truck Rocket", "Melody the Music Pet", "Carmine's Big Race", "Mr. Penguin's Ice Cream Adventure" September 8, 2009
Go to Africa (US release) "He Speaks Music", "Animal Snack Time", "The Puzzle of the Sphinx" November 11, 2009
Go to America (US release) "Melody and Me", "A Tall Totem Tale", "Knock on Wood" November 11, 2009
Animal Expedition "Whale Tale", "Duck, Duck, June", "Jump for Joey", "Little Elephant's Big Parade" February 9, 2010
Incredible Shrinking Adventure "The Incredible Shrinking Adventure", "Quincy and the Instrument Dinosaurs", "Rocket the Bug", "Sleeping Bassoon" June 18, 2013

The series also had two VHS releases, one being a VHS version of Our Huge Adventure and the second being Climb Aboard and Get Ready to Explore which included the episodes "The Birthday Balloons", "Dragon Kite" and "Ring Around the Planet". The Halloween special is a bonus feature on the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse DVD Mickey's Treat.

Reception[edit]

The series was given a 5-star rating by Common Sense Media.[2]

In other media[edit]

A video game based on the show was released for the Game Boy Advance in 2006.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Information about the cast and crew is taken from the closing credits of each episode.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Crump, William D. (2019). Happy Holidays—Animated! A Worldwide Encyclopedia of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year's Cartoons on Television and Film. McFarland & Co. pp. 169–170. ISBN 9781476672939.
  2. ^ "Little Einsteins TV Review". Common Sense Media. 27 November 2007. Archived from the original on February 18, 2015. Retrieved February 18, 2015.

External links[edit]