The Berenstain Bears (2003 TV series)

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The Berenstain Bears
Berenstain Bears 2003 TV Series.png
GenreChildren's series
Comedy
Created byStan and Jan Berenstain
Voices ofCamilla Scott
Ben Campbell
Michael Cera
Tajja Isen
Corinne Conley
Leslie Carlson
Amanda Soha
Marc McCulkin
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 episodes40 (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 Limited
AGOGO Entertainment
DistributorNelvana International
Release
Original networkPBS Kids (US)
Treehouse TV (Canada)
Picture format480i (SDTV)
Audio formatStereo
Original releaseJanuary 6, 2003 (2003-01-06) –
December 6, 2004 (2004-12-06)
Chronology
Preceded byThe Berenstain Bears (1985 TV series)
External links
Website

The Berenstain Bears is a Canadian children's animated television comedy series based on the children's book series of the same name by Stan and Jan Berenstain.[1] 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. It ran for 40 episodes in three seasons.[2] The series debuted on PBS Kids in the United States on January 6, 2003 and ended on December 6, 2004.[3]

A previous Berenstain Bears cartoon aired in Australia and the United States from 1985 to 1987.

Synopsis[edit]

The series is set in a world populated only by anthropomorphic bears and primarily centers around the Berenstain Bears. The Berenstain Bears are 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 following 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 generousity and responsibility, as well as the daily lives of the bears.

Episodes[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
113January 6, 2003 (2003-01-06)January 22, 2003 (2003-01-22)
213July 14, 2003 (2003-07-14)July 30, 2003 (2003-07-30)
314November 17, 2004 (2004-11-17)December 6, 2004 (2004-12-06)

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]

  • Chris Wiggins as Squire Grizzly
  • Ellen-Ray Hennessy as Miss Grizzle
  • Philip Williams as Farmer Ben

Production[edit]

The show was produced by the Canada-based animation studio Nelvana for PBS Kids in the United States and Treehouse TV in Canada. 80 15-minute episodes were produced, adapted from the books and also a few new stories as well, similar to the 1985 production.[4] However, due to the laws requiring Nelvana to employ 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 the previous animated series and specials. Only a limited amount of polka dots was allowed in the five specials.)[4] The show's theme song is performed by country singer Lee Ann Womack.[4] The series is supposed to supplement the 1985 series because new books were released since then, even though the two series have a radically different production style as well as a change of in-universe elements. Another issue is the two series are not 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.[5] Originally, it aired together with Seven Little Monsters but the two shows were eventually separated.[6] Reruns aired on PBS Kids Sprout (later known as simply Sprout) from its inception up until the channel rebranded into Universal Kids on September 9, 2017, after Sprout's rights to air the series expired.[7]

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. ^ Perlmutter, David (2018). The Encyclopedia of American Animated Television Shows. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 77–78. ISBN 978-1538103739.
  2. ^ "Berenstain Bears". Corus Entertainment. Retrieved 3 January 2019.
  3. ^ Erickson, Hal (2005). Television Cartoon Shows: An Illustrated Encyclopedia, 1949 Through 2003 (2nd ed.). McFarland & Co. pp. 133–134. ISBN 978-1476665993.
  4. ^ 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.
  5. ^ "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.
  6. ^ "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.
  7. ^ "Mitchell Hodack - Universal Kids, will you do reruns episodes of The Berenstain Bears?". Facebook. September 30, 2017. Hi Mitchell! Sadly, our contract with The Berenstain Bears has ended and we will not be airing reruns. We still have a ton of other great shows and you can see the full schedule here: http://www.universalkids.com/schedule. Thanks!

External links[edit]