The Berenstain Bears (2003 TV series)

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The Berenstain Bears
GenreChildren's series
Comedy
Created byStan and Jan Berenstain
Voices ofMichael Cera
Michael D'Ascenzo
Tajja Isen
Camilla Scott
Benedict Campbell
Amanda Soha
Mike McCulkin
Corinne Conley
Gage Knox
Nikki Marshall
Mark Rendall
Theme music composerStan Meissner
Opening theme"The Berenstain Bears" by Lee Ann Womack
Ending theme"The Berenstain Bears" (Instrumental)
Composer(s)Ray Parker
Tom Szczesniak
Country of originCanada
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes62 (81 shorts) (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)Stan and Jan Berenstain
Steven Ching
Scott Dyer
Michael Hirsh
Producer(s)Lan Lamon
Supervising producers:
Patricia R. Burns
Jocelyn Hamilton
Michelle Melanson
Cynthia Taylor
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)Nelvana
AGOGO
DistributorNelvana
PBS
Release
Original networkPBS Kids
Treehouse TV
Picture format480i (SDTV)
Original releaseJanuary 6, 2003 (2003-01-06) – September 28, 2004 (2004-09-28)
Chronology
Preceded byThe Berenstain Bears (1985 TV series)
External links
Website

The Berenstain Bears is a Canadian children's animated series based on the children's book series of the same name by Stan and Jan Berenstain. The series follows the lives of a family of anthropomorphic bears who learn a moral or safety-related lesson during the course of each episode.

The series debuted on PBS Kids in the United States on January 6, 2003 and ended on September 28, 2004.

Synopsis[edit]

The series is set in a world populated solely by anthropomorphic bears and primarily centers around the Berenstain Bears, a family residing in the rural community of Bear Country consisting of Mama Bear, Papa Bear, Brother Bear, and Sister Bear. Albeit numerous episodes are based on the books and promote the same morals as encouraged in the picture books from which their plots originated, the program's faithfulness to the original series is slightly mixed on account of a number of later episodes follow original storylines. Nonetheless, they mostly portray the same environment depicted in the original Berenstain Bears storybooks quite accurately and concentrate on the messages and lessons learned by the family through their different experiences, such as gratitude and responsibility, as well as the daily lives of the bears.

Episodes[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
127January 6, 2003 (2003-01-06)September 17, 2003 (2003-09-17)
224September 18, 2003 (2003-09-18)October 20, 2003 (2003-10-20)
311April 5, 2004 (2004-04-05)September 28, 2004 (2004-09-28)

Cast and characters[edit]

Main[edit]

Recurring[edit]

Family[edit]

Friends[edit]

  • Amanda Soha as Lizzy Bruin
  • Nikki Marshall as Queenie
  • Mark Rendall as Ferdy Factual
  • Gage Knox as Too-Tall
  • Patrick Salvagna as Skuzz
  • James Eckhouse as Smirk

Citizens[edit]

Production[edit]

The show was produced by the Canadian animation company Nelvana for PBS Kids in the United States and Treehouse TV in Canada. Eighty 15 minute episodes were produced adapted from the books and also a few new stories as well, similar to the 1985 production.[1] However, due to Canadian laws requiring Nelvana to employ only Canadian writers and artists, the Berenstains' involvement in the program was limited; They sought to exert their influence on some details, according to Stan. "Our bears don't wear shoes, and Papa wouldn't wear his hat in the house...And we try to keep complete, total banality out of the stories." Common practicalities of animation did force some minor costume changes from the books, such as eliminating polka dots and plaids. (This issue also occurred in previous animated series and specials. Only a limited amount of polka dots was allowed in the five specials.)[1] The show's theme song is performed by Lee Ann Womack.[1]

The series is supposed to supplement the 1985 series because new books were released since then. Even though the two series have radically different production style as well as a change of in-universe elements. Another issue is the two series are never seen together.

Music[edit]

Country music singer-songwriter Lee Ann Womack sings the series' theme song, which was written by Stan Meissner.

Broadcast[edit]

It debuted in the United States on PBS Kids on January 6, 2003.[2] Originally, it aired together with Seven Little Monsters but the two shows were eventually separated.[3]

It also ran on Knowledge (British Columbia), Tiny Pop and KidsCo (UK), OBS (South Korea), YTV, Treehouse TV, Nickelodeon and Teletoon Retro in Canada. The show also broadcast reruns on PBS Kids Sprout from the channel's inception until the network rebranded into Universal Kids.

Accolades[edit]

Year Award Category Recipients and nominees Outcome
2004 Gemini Awards Best Pre-School Program or Series Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain, Michael Hirsh, Steven Ching, Scott Dyer Nominated
Young Artist Awards Best Performance in a Voice-Over Role – Young Actress Tajja Isen Nominated

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Gillies, Judith S. (January 4, 2003). "Grin 'n' 'Bear' it: The Berenstains come to WTTW". The Washington Post. Retrieved 29 April 2018.
  2. ^ "The Berenstain Bears – The Nelvana-Produced Series Comes To Video For The First Time Ever". Corus Entertainment Inc. December 10, 2002. Retrieved 29 April 2018.
  3. ^ "The Berenstain Bears Bring 40 Years Of Literary History To "PBS Kids" With Premiere Of 15-Minute Animated TV Series". Corus Entertainment. November 14, 2002. Retrieved 29 April 2018.

External links[edit]