Road Rovers

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Road Rovers
Created by Tom Ruegger
Jeff Gordon
Written by Tom Ruegger
Mark Seidenberg
Directed by Herb Moore
Starring Jess Harnell
Tress MacNeille
Jeff Bennett
Kevin Michael Richardson
Frank Welker
Joseph Campanella
Jim Cummings
Theme music composer Richard Stone
Composer(s) Gordon Goodwin
Don Harper
Country of origin USA
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 13 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) Tom Ruegger
Producer(s) Bob Doucette
Running time 30 minutes (with commercials)
Release
Original network Kids' WB
Original release September 7, 1996 (1996-09-07) – February 22, 1997 (1997-02-22)

Road Rovers is an American animated television series produced by Warner Bros. Animation that premiered on Kids' WB on September 7, 1996. After one season it ended on February 22, 1997. Reruns continued to air until September 6, 1997. It was then on Cartoon Network from February 7, 1998 until 2000.

The show follows the adventures of the Road Rovers, a team of five super-powered crime-fighting anthropomorphic dogs, known as "cano-sapiens".

Plot[edit]

In the town of Socorro, New Mexico (one year prior to the formation of the Road Rovers), Professor Shepherd was forced to relinquish experimental transdogmafier technology to General Parvo in exchange for his lost dog, but instead Parvo gives him a bomb that destroys his laboratory. Next year, as normal dogs begin to mutate into monsters, Shephard, who miraculously survived the attack, takes measures to stop Parvo who is behind this.

Shepherd selects five different dogs and in his new, secret underground lab, he uses his new transdogmifier on the five, turning them into "Cano-sapiens".

Characters[edit]

  • Hunter (Jess Harnell): A Goldador from the United States he leads the team decided by their master. The reason he’s the leader, it’s because Hunter has all the qualities he need to be a good leader: Flexible, loyal, friendly and forgivable. He also loves play times, his favorite toy it’s a tennis ball. He’s like everyone says: a person that can accepted anyone to be his friend, as long as that person respects him. He’s also cocky when it’s action time. He’s also peaceful, and when it’s necessary, gets angry. His super power, (as all dogs that become a rover get their own super power) it’s the super speed: This allows Hunter run faster than a speed of sound, like other characters from other TV shows: Flash, Speed Runner, Sonic the hedgehog, etc. He’s relationship with the other rovers of his team it’s quite almost perfect, including Muzzle, which there’s an episode that shows Hunter meeting Muzzle for the first time. He’s also good related with Colleen, not only because she’s the only female member in the RR, but also because he shares his qualities with Colleen. Hunter has a family besides of his new master: The president Bill Clinton (before Barack Obama), his mother, which he lived with her before being taking away by an Animal Shelter, as seen in episode 13.
  • Colleen (Tress MacNeille): A Rough Collie from the United Kingdom, and the only female in the group. She’s like the coordinator of the team, always checking everything goes well without problems or issues. She’s very skilled in martial arts, in addition of having cunning abilities like for example: hide from her enemies. She’s very well related with the rest of the team, in fact, her beauty makes everyone go after her. However, she’s a very nonsense girl that means, she doesn’t get conquered by any men pretty easy, since being polite also requires a person who really understands her heart, and has concern to all of her problems she may have.

That explains her relation with Hunter, through all the episodes, Colleen gets along well with Hunter (sometimes), that can make Hunter and Colleen someday become something more than just simply friends. While for Blitz, it’s the opposite, what Blitz just want, it’s to conquer Colleen’s heart with no excuses. This causes to Colleen play with Blitz until he gets angry. There’s no information or any story about her parents, nor her old master, in the beginning, she was in a dark alley carrying a bone, while defend herself from other rough dogs, and after that, she lives with the prime minister of the United Kingdom (UK).

  • Blitz (Jeff Bennett): A Doberman from Germany. Unlike his leader Hunter, Blitz sometimes it’s arrogant, selfish, a lone person when he wants to, narcissist and also sometimes a coward when he tries to be a brave rover, and whenever that happens, he screams like a sissy girl. He carries a very fragile temper, and he can get angry pretty easy. His super powers are mighty sharp claws on his finger nails and mighty dinosaur jaws on his mouth, which allows him to destroy everything so resistant. Everyone who saw this character said that Blitz’s way of speech’s like imitating Arnold Swartznagger. He also loves peppermint milkshakes and tushies (buttocks) to bite, which he’s doing it as a record he needs to get a new collar for him.

His relation with the rovers sometimes doesn’t go pretty well like Hunter, Colleen, Exile and Shag do with each other, and sometimes when Blitz isn’t doing the right thing, his friends are like teasing him, especially Colleen and Exile. Whenever he acts like weird, Exile always says him: “Don’t be a weird, boy!” Whenever he tries to get a love relation with Colleen, sometimes Colleen likes to play with him, her favorite play it’s giving Blitz other names, she calls him names like: “Mr. fluffy pants”, “Fluffy” or even “Blister”. And sometimes whenever Blitz tries to put a finger on her, she always defend herself by kicking Blitz really hard (don’t worry, blood not included). The only person who knows Blitz’s problem it’s Hunter, and tries the best to make Blitz understand that Hunter isn’t like the other teammates, and he does try to respect him in many ways. It even shows that Hunter doesn’t want to abandon Blitz (even though Colleen suggests it), something that hints viewers that Blitz and Hunter are like friends. He used to work as a guard dog from thieves, now; he lives with the chancellor of Germany.

  • Exile (Kevin Michael Richardson): A Siberian Husky from Siberia. His full name it’s Exilo Michalovitch Sanhusky as he mentions in episode 13, he’s a Siberian husky from Russia, he speaks in English in Russian accent, however, there are times when he speaks English in a wrong way, for example: Instead of saying “Mayday” he says “Aprilday”, and, when he sings “Jingle bells”, instead of “bells”, he says instead “balls”: “Jingle balls”. Like Hunter, he’s also a good hearted person; he’s responsible usually, friendly and carries a strong temper and gets angry when it’s necessary, or sometimes when’s not. He’s good related with Blitz, though he doesn’t like Blitz act like a weirdo in front of him or in his presence. His super powers are super vision: super vision provides two vision attacks: freeze, heat and night vision. It also has super human strength, which allows him to carry heaviest things. And as well the ability to fix and un-fix stuff. He used to work along with other of his husky friends as dog carries on sled, until living now with the president of Russia. The only family was mentioned it’s mother and father Russia at episode 3, Exile says he misses his mother, while for his father, he never loves him. He loves bear hugs and kisses to give and receive, especially to his comrades. He also loves to read children books, especially the ones made by Dr. Seuss.
  • Shag (Frank Welker): An Old English Sheepdog from Switzerland. Unfortunately, Shag’s transformation to a cano-sapien was only done by a half: He can still walk like a human, but his language became half-English and half-dog, in addition that his uniform it’s totally disappeared, making him remain in his natural form. He’s the team’s best cooker they need: he serves the tastiest meals the team needs to fill their stomach. His super power it’s courage, but sometimes, he has problem to confront his fears, but he always give an effort to be brave and protect his friends when it’s necessary. His temper it’s strong, but he can get angry when the enemies mess with him.

Due of the halved transformation, this make Shag’s body give a super ability to carry a supply of objects without making them to heavy for Shag, he can carry as much as possible, since it seems it has an endless room for it. He’s also known to be a very glutton dog, he eats a LOT! But fortunately, his supply of food never ends, nor he gets fat after eating too much. He lived on a valley along with a group of sheep, now he lives with the president of the Swiss confederation. He’s very friendly with all of his teammates.

  • Muzzle (Frank Welker): A Rottweiler. Muzzle was "Scout", Professor Sheperd's dog that was kidnapped. He was never transformed into a cano-sapien, due of his aggressiveness, ferocity and a big appetite. And in consequence, he’s forced to be strained on a cart wearing a straitjacket and a mask. He’s always been like the “final attack” for the enemies: whenever the rovers surrounded by a big number of baddies, Hunter proceeds to take off Muzzle’s straitjacket and mask, letting Muzzle jump into the enemies, ready to attack! But first, he says the important quote for it: “Let’s Muzzle ‘em!”.

As Muzzle attacks, it doesn’t show Muzzle, it becomes an off-screen attacks of him, leaving the rovers to do something else in distraction until Muzzle’s done. He’s well related with the team, especially Hunter, who became his closest friend. He used to be Scout, as seen in episode 11: “Reigning cats and dogs”: Where shows Scout along with the master: Willian F. Shepherd, until he was kidnapped by Parvo, in attempting to turn him into a cano-mutant: Luckily, due that the blueprints of the transformigfier from Shepherd Parvo stole it was still under development, this only made Scout be more aggressive, and thus, he became Muzzle.

Disappointed, instead of Parvo sending Muzzle back to his master, he send him to an animal shealter, which Muzzle meets Hunter on the way.

  • Professor William F. Shepherd "The Master" (Joseph Campanella): The geneticist behind the transdogmafier and the Road Rovers. He’s the headmaster of the Road Rovers, he was the original creator of the transformigfier, the one he choose these 5 dogs to be the Road Rovers, without him, the world would have been ruled by the cano-mutants led by Parvo.

When Shepherd attempt to recover Scout from Parvo, he gave Parvo what he ask in return of Scout. Unfortunately, he was tricked, and he receive a bomb instead, causing the whole laboratory he owns be fell into ruins and sending to the underground. By then, Parvo believed that Shepherd died there. However, he had no knowledge that Shepherd survive, leaving him to finish what he need to.

And so, he build the team’s headquarters, with everything the need: weapons, food, vehicles, bathrooms, transformation pods, recovery room, even a meeting room.

Whenever there’s danger or troubles in an indicated place, Shepherd calls for the rovers and informs them about it. It was never tolled how Shepherd got his hair got white after his disappearance, nor why he’s always behind a gate of light almost hiding entirely his identity. (Though he gives a very simple reason: “special effects”)

  • General Parvo (Jim Cummings): The Road Rovers' main antagonist who is out to destroy Professor Shepherd and conquer the world. He has a permanent cough. It was later in the series that General Parvo was at one time a Cat before being transformed into a "Felin Sapien", which resemble humans a great deal more than Shepherd's Cano-sapiens. He shares a very similar appearance to wrestler Hulk Hogan. The name Parvo derives from a canine disease which often kills puppies.
  • The Groomer (Sheena Easton): The Groomer is the mostly loyal assistant to General Parvo. She's generally armed with a portable hair clipper, though she uses other equipment when appropriate. She also provides Parvo with throat lozenges to calm his coughing fits.

Episodes[edit]

No. Title Directed By Written By Original Air Date
1 "Let's Hit The Road" Herb Moore Tom Ruegger & Mark Seidenberg September 7, 1996 (1996-09-07)
The Road Rovers meet for the first time.
2 "Storm From The Pacific" Jon McClenahan Earl Kress & Tom Ruegger September 14, 1996 (1996-09-14)
Disgraced Captain Zachary Storm seeks revenge on the United States for his court-martial.
3 "A Hair of The Dog That Bit You" Scott Jeralds John Ludin & Mark Seidenberg September 21, 1996 (1996-09-21)
Packs of werewolves take over London, and Exile seems to have gotten bitten (or scratched), which puts him under watch. Ultimately, it turns out Colleen was the one who turned into a werewolf, they seek help from the wise Confusus (Confuse Us) who gives them a riddle to cure a werewolf's bite.
4 "Where Rovers Dare" Herb Moore Brian Chin & Tom Ruegger October 12, 1996 (1996-10-12)
The nations of Eisneria and Katzenstok (named after the CEO's of Disney and Dreamworks) are preparing to go to war over an ancient scepter. This episode featured a reference to Disney at the end of the episode, complete with the silhouette of the head of Mickey Mouse.
5 "Let Sleeping Dogs Lie" Blair Peters Nick Dubois October 26, 1996 (1996-10-26)
The Road Rovers must protect ancient artifacts from unknown ninjas (belonging to Parvo).
6 "The Dog Who Knew Too Much" Jon McClenahan Earl Kress & Tom Ruegger November 2, 1996 (1996-11-02)
One dog has the answers to a rash of human and canine kidnappings, and becomes a temporary Road Rover so he can testify. However, Sport, the name of the dog, had somewhat of a big mouth and tried talking himself out of certain situations. This episode's title is a play on the title "The Man Who Knew Too Much".
7 "Hunter's Heroes" Scott Jeralds John Ludin & Mark Seidenberg November 9, 1996 (1996-11-09)
Parvo and his cano-mutants are at it again. This time, it's a high-tech, heavily armed concentration camp to keep thousands of dogs in captivity. This is for shipping armies of cano-mutants out to the major cities of the world so Parvo can take over militarily. The episode's title is likely a play on the old TV show Hogan's Heroes, which centered on American POWs held somewhere in Nazi Germany.
8 "Dawn of The Groomer" Herb Moore Mark Seidenberg November 16, 1996 (1996-11-16)
The Groomer gets delusions of grandeur involved taking over the world with cats, otherwise known as Felo-Mutants.
9 "Still A Few Bugs In The System" Brad Neave Nick Dubois November 23, 1996 (1996-11-23)
A biologist named Dr. Eugene Atwater does some research on the survival of bugs over the years of their survival. However, General Parvo turns his research subjects into life-size giants using an attachment from his Cano-Mutator. The bugs now plan on making a nuclear winter, since they know that only they will survive it.
10 "Reigning Cats And Dogs" Herb Moore Tom Ruegger & Mark Seidenberg February 1, 1997 (1997-02-01)
General Parvo builds a successful time machine so then he could stop Prof. Shepherd from creating the Road Rovers. An accident reverts him back to his original form of an alley cat, but the Rovers still have to follow him back to ensure their creation. As with "Hunter's Heroes" and "The Dog Who Knew Too Much", this episode's title featured a play on words, this time a reference to the old phrase 'raining cats and dogs'.
11 "Gold And Retrievers" Jon McClenahan Jeff Kwitny & Tom Ruegger February 8, 1997 (1997-02-08)
Gold begins to flood the world's markets at an alarming rate. The source is traced to South America, where a blind boy named Luca leads them to an ancient golden pyramid. The episode's title is a partial pun on Hunter's breed of dog, the Golden Retriever.
12 "Take Me To Your Leader" Brian Chin & Scott Jeralds Nick Dubois & Mark Seidenberg February 15, 1997 (1997-02-15)
Zachary Storm is back again, and hires alien-like recruits to start a nuclear war - off screen cameo from The Brain (from Animaniacs and Pinky and the Brain).
13 "A Day In The Life" Scott Jeralds Tom Ruegger February 22, 1997 (1997-02-22)
An ordinary day for the Rovers. "Ms. Flamial" (from Animaniacs) is mentioned in this episode. Song: Russian Names Song

Home Media releases[edit]

A multi-region DVD of the entire series was announced on February 4, 2015 by Warner Archive and was released on February 10, 2015.

External links[edit]