YTV, and Nickelodeon Canada announce Fall 2011 Highlights … more like Friday Night Lowlights?

Corus Entertainment named YTV’s Fall 2011 Press Release as “YTV FALL LINEUP HAS SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE, EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK!”. Please keep this in mind while you read on.

YTV’s fall pickups include Friday Night Lights, Rated A for Awesome, and Life With Boys. Friday Nights Life is about football. Rated A for Awesome is a show made by Nerd Corps. Life With Boys is a live action thing produced by Nelvana. Returning series are The Next Star, In Real Life, Splatalot, That’s So Weird, How To Be Indie, Sidekick, Mr. Young, and Beyblade (though they label the second season as a “new series” for some reason). There’s also the stock pile of Nick junk like Big Time Rush, Victorious, and iCarly. You can find all the relevant premiere information here.

Nickelodeon Canada shows no sign of becoming useful and picks up Supah Ninjas, Bucket and Skinner’s Epic Adventure (should I call Bill and Ted?), House of Anubus (which was a YTV.com exclusive at one point), Kenan & Kel, and The Amanda Show. To see relevant information regarding premieres click here.

Yo dawg, I heard you were half dog so I didn't air your show out of principle.

I’ve been an anime fan since I first set my eyes on Escaflowne on YTV back in the day. I lived through the era of Endless Waltz having endless waltzes. I lived through the era where Yu-Gi-Oh!, and Beyblade were king. I gleed during the time of Inu-Yasha. This, is a low point. The biggest low point I think anime’s faced in this country in a long, long time. Retailers like HMV are struggling and cutting back wherever they can, which means store closures, and niche products like anime getting the shaft. We’re seeing large market titles like Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood go to niche venues like Superchannel. Heck, we’re seeing mainstream success stories like Dragon Ball Kai not even airing in this country. All we have are the children’s 22 minute toy commercials, which will we hope will foster an audience someone will want to cater to. But even then that’s flawed as outside of Bakugan, we’re behind in everything. Including Beyblade: Metal Masters which will have premiered in both Australia, and the United States before a single episode even airs in the country that co-produces it, and records the show in Toronto.

Entitled anime fanboy schtick aside, this schedule is pretty bad. YTV only picked up 3 new shows this season. 1 of which already aired on Canadian TV. I mentioned how safe Teletoon’s fall lineup was, well if that was safe, this is hiding under the covers ignorant to the rest of the world safe. No 24/7 major channel should only have 3 new series to debut in the fall.

But worse off is the variety, or rather lack thereof. The fall schedule’s lineup consists almost entirely of family and kid oriented sitcoms, with 2 reality shows, a drama, and an action series. The press release said “something for everyone”. One show people could’ve seen before isn’t going to feed drama fans. A few series aimed to sell toys to boys isn’t going to fulfill the wants of people looking for action programming either. Maybe YTV should’ve saved their share of that 14 million they’re spending on a co-pro action series (!!!!) with Australia and just used that to pay for some new acquisitions.

Just a note to anyone expecting coverage of Family Channel and Disney XD’s lineup, I can say that’s not going to happen. I’ve seen what they’ve picked up and I couldn’t come up with anything longer than a list.

Funimation holding Canadian survey to find out online, and TV habits ends Sunday

Funimation Entertainment, the leading distributor of anime in North America, is conducting an online survey targeted exclusively at the Canadian market. This is rare, as I don’t believe outside of the occasional convention visit that Canadian anime fans have been singled out for a response.

This survey asks about collecting, shopping, and viewing habits. The most interesting question, in my opinion is #14 “What Canadian TV channels should carry Anime? Why?”. I found this to be a great opportunity to voice my displeasure over the recent broadcast news regarding Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood in Canada. I suggest all of my readers to voice their opinion on this survey. The survey will close on Sunday August 14, 2011.

No, I didn’t ask for the Funimation Channel to be available to Canadians, because I suspect that would do us no better than Superchannel.

Thanks goes to Sitting on an Atomic Bomb writer, Jesse Betteridge, for pointing this out in our Facebook group!

Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood picked up by Superchannel, premieres August 15

Shocking, insane, unexpected – those are the words I describe this revelation. Niche premium channel group Superchannel has picked up the broadcast rights to Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, the 2009 re-adaptation of Hiromu Arakawa’s manga series simply known as “Fullmetal Alchemist”. The 64 episode anime series will begin broadcast on Superchannel 2 (and its HD counterpart) at 10PM EST. The original 2003-2004 anime series aired on YTV in Bionix, and became a relatively large hit, allowing for its movie, The Conqueror of Shamballa to makes it North American television debut on the network.

Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood

Say it ain't so Edward!

As I mentioned at the top, this is unexpected – almost as unexpected as when YTV picked up the original FMA series in 2005, ending a 5 year programming drought from Funimation. Superchannel is a niche premium group, that honestly, is probably not received by any large segment of the Canadian population. I don’t get it, and I only know of 1 person who does. The rates to subscribe to this group of channels are also quite high. So it’s telling that Funimation went to this length to get the series on TV here. I guess they felt this broadcast was better than no broadcast. Which I suppose will foreshadow a certain broadcaster’s fall upfronts quite nicely…

I say it’s unexpected, by which I mean being such a niche venue, Superchannel won’t be bringing Brotherhood to the full audience it deserves. The channel has aired anime in the past, with Requiem For the Darkness, Gurren Laggan, and Monster being the highlights. But those are largely due to their programming deal with Starz Media, who ran the (now defunct) Ani-Monday television block on Syfy in the United States. I never expected them to go out of their way, and air an anime series they weren’t getting via a partnership, and as Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood aired on [adult swim] in the United States, it isn’t something they got from Starz. They got it from Funimation.

I was told that Superchannel were looking at more anime series, but shrugged it off, as joked that they were finally going to air Rave Master, but it seems they have bigger series in store, and according to an email received by forum user Kefka_Palazzo, there’s more in store for December.

Teletoon announces Fall 2011 Programming Skid

Hell month begins... now!

Teletoon, Canada’s premiere animation channel has announced its Fall 2011 programming highlights. While anime fans won’t exactly be getting a feast from the cable channel, there’s certainly some programming to be excited over. Especially, the premiere of the long awaited Cartoon Network original, Young Justice, as well as a certain anime-influenced My Life Me.

Young Justice follows Robin, Aqualad, Kid Flash, Superboy, Miss Martian and Artemis as teenage super heroes trying to prove themselves worthy of the mantle they’ve been granted. The series has reached universal acclaim, and high ratings since its debut on Cartoon Network in the US, and will premiere on Teletoon Friday, September 9 at 7 p.m. ET/PT.

My Life Me is a story about teenagers fitting in, or rather trying hard not too. Meet Birch, an inspiring manga artist who’s dealing with the ins and outs of everyday highschool. You know, boy problems, homework, and well, homework. The series has its characters designs by none other than Dramacon creator Svetlana Chmakova, the comedic slice of life series will premiere Saturday, September 10 at 2:30 p.m. ET/PT.

Please don't be animated like Three Delivery, please don't be animated like Three Delivery...

Detentionaire tells the tale of Grade 10 student Lee Ping, who is sent to a year of detention after having an inexcusable prank blamed on him. Follow his journey as he attempts to escape detention, clear his name, and find out who the real prankster is as this Nelvana series premieres Monday, September 12 to Friday, September 16 at 5 p.m. ET/PT in a five episode sneak peak event.

Those are the major standouts for me on Teletoon’s Fall 2011 schedule. However, they’ve picked up more, such as The Looney Tunes Show, Best Ed, and new episodes of Ben 10, Adventure Time, Johnny Test, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Jimmy Two-Shoes, and more. The truly bizarre things are the acquisitions of Cartoon Network’s less than popular game show series Hole In The Wall, and a green light to an live action adventure series Beyond Human. This along with the recently green lit for season 2, My Babysitter is a Vampire is giving a rather decent portion of the schedule to live action programming. This is a concern for viewers who’d much rather the channel stick by its “animation station” moniker. There’s no real reason these series couldn’t air on half-sister channels like YTV, or Family Channel. What’s really bizarre is that Teletoon reports that they’ve picked up Meta-Jets. That’s not a bizarre pickup given they created the show, but it’s a bizarre pickup in that they aired the show last year in an unadvertised sent to die manner…

But that’s enough talk about Teleton’s day time schedule, after all, we still have Teletoon at Night, and Teletoon Retro to go through, and let me tell you something, it’ll be short.

Teletoon at Night’s new programming pick ups exist in only one show – the “sure doesn’t look like a ripoff of Family Guy’s art style” Crash Canyon. Thankfully, that wasn’t the only thing the channel picked up for the block, as they’ve picked up season seven, and eight of Futurama, and season two of Archer. Like I said, kind of a light pull, though obviously perennial series like Robot Chicken, and Family Guy will remain on the channel.

Now, the digital cable channel Teletoon Retro on the other hand picked up a tonne of new programming. So much so that rather than giving any sort of summary, I’m just going to list series – Batman (1960’s live action), Felix The Cat, For Better or For Worse, Garfield and Friends, Jem, King of the Hill, Looney Tunes shorts, My Pet Monster, Ned’s Newt, and Tom and Jerry Friends. While this list is certainly large, it makes me feel a bit old given I was around when Ned’s Newt, For Better or For Worse, King of the Hill, etc. premiered…

As an overall schedule for Teletoon, the network and its sister played it safe. All of the series I highlighted were all expected series. Young Justice, being a Cartoon Network, DC Comics creation was guaranteed to air on the channel eventually, and we’ve known about My Life Me, and Detentionaire for ages. That’s kind of the problem here, outside of Beyond Human, and maybe Hole In The Wall, these were all series one would expect to air on this channel. They didn’t make any jumps for new and unique programming, but rather more of what fits within their standard conventions. Sure, it’s exciting that Futurama, and Archer are coming back with new seasons, but that’s expected. Better yet, where are the new episodes of the rest of Adult Swim’s programs? Why is it the first original Teletoon at Night production we see in ages is just a clone of other highly successful shows? Where are the Marvel anime series? They’re airing on G4 in the US right now, and Teletoon’s Marvel exclusivity agreement doesn’t expire until next year. I don’t know, and despite my very negative outlook on this skid, it isn’t bad by any means. It’s just expected, and something tells me that’s what I’ll be saying about Family’s, and YTV’s in the upcoming weeks.

If you’d like to make your own mind on Teletoon’s Fall 2011 programming, check out their Media Site.

Yu-Gi-Oh! 3D: Bonds Beyond Time listed for YTV premiere on July 9, DVD release in question *UPDATE* TV Broadcast may be false alarm

As schedule wiz Mohji points out scheduling site Zap2it lists the third Yu-Gi-Oh! theatrical film, Yu-Gi-Oh! 3D: Bonds Beyond Time (under its Japanese title of “Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie: Super Fusion! Bonds That Transcend Time”) as airing the on July 9, 2011 at 12AM. This would be the movie’s television debut, and I guess an apology for not screening the film in Canada.

IN TRUE 3D

While Zap2it is almost always correct in their listings (as they receive there’s from broadcasters) I’m not 100% convinced that the film will debut at this time. Firstly, 12AM isn’t the kind of timeslot YTV debuts films at. 12AM is a timeslot where they’ll showcase an encore presentation of an earlier broadcast of that night. The film is currently only set for that one broadcast. Secondly, the listing on Zap2it is almost all linked to the Japanese staff, from voice actors, to even the title. The Japanese version wouldn’t air on YTV.

However, that doesn’t mean YTV won’t air the film. It could simply have been put on the schedule mistakenly (like a certain show) jumping the gun. We do know 4Kids (the franchise’s US licensor) was selling the movie to international broadcasters, and that YTV bought into 4Kids with another batch of Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds episodes. But would they allow a Canadian broadcaster to air it before they air it on the CW4Kids? Would they even allow a broadcast before the DVD release?

This is not 3D, but I sure fooled you!

Speaking of which, its DVD release is in question. As I mentioned on a few social networking sites, I became a bit concerned for the film’s home media release when no Canadian retailers had put up pages relating to the release (after various US retailers had put up pre-order pages for July 19). I grew slightly concerned, and reached out to 4Kids for a response on if this DVD would be US-only. They never got back to me. That’s when I noticed something – the US release seemed questionable. I checked over the distributor’s website (in this case, it’s A&E Home Video), and saw nothing Yu-Gi-Oh! related scheduled. I thought, “Maybe they don’t advertise third party titles?”. But then I checked Amazon.com, and instead of asking me to pre-order. It told me the film was no longer available. So I checked Wal-Mart.com, and sure enough the film was pushed back to the generic place holder date of December 31, 2012. It’s not getting released in July in North America. Though, it seems that Manga Entertainment UK’s Uncut, and Bi-lingual release of the film (which also includes Malefic Red Eyes Black Dragon – a card originally given away with the screenings of the film) will still take place on July 25, 2011. I’d certainly hope that 3D/2D Blu-Ray is region-free…

But here comes the inevitable question of why this US release seems to not be happening. Well, as someone who isn’t in the know in this specific situation, it’s pretty easy to point the finger at the legal fight 4Kids Entertainment is in with NAS, and TV Tokyo (the Japanese production houses behind Yu-Gi-Oh!). Especially given it’s a lawsuit stemming from home video distribution, and 4Kids supposedly hiding money earned from Yu-Gi-Oh! DVD, and VHS releases.

One thing I can say for certain is this, if, and maybe even when YTV (I’d suggest checking out YTV.com’s online schedule for the 9th, and seeing if the film is listed there as the air date) broadcasts this film, it won’t be in 3D. So while it’s a nice way to bring the film to Canadians, we’re still missing some of the cool things US, UK, and Japanese audiences got to see.

UPDATE

As noted by a few members, YTV.com’s online schedule list Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie: The Pyramid of Light for this 12AM broadcast. It appears this may have been a false alarm all along.

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Trigun: Badlands Rumble Canadian Theatre List Announced

Presented in Japanese, with English subtitles, Funimation and Cineplex Odeon continue their trend of bringing anime-films Canadian anime fans shouldn’t really care about to a theatre near you! Okay, that’s not entirely fair as Trigun did receive a Canadian broadcast on G4 TechTV back in the Anime Current days, but still.

Here’s the entire theatre listing for the June 22, one night-only screening:

Scotiabank Theatre Chinook
6455 Macleod trail S.W
Calgary
AB

Cineplex Odeon South Edmonton
1525-99th St. N.W.
Edmonton
AB

Scotiabank Theatre Edmonton
#3030, 8882-170 Street
Edmonton
AB

EMPIRE Theatres City Centre 9 Cinemas
10200 102nd Avenue
Edmonton
AB

Galaxy Cinemas Lethbridge
501-1st Avenue S.W.
Lethbridge
AB

SilverCity Cross Iron Mills & XSCAPE
Unit #528, 261055 Cross Iron Blvd.
Rocky View
AB

SilverCity Metropolis
4700 Kingsway Ave
Burnaby
BC

SilverCity Coquitlam
170 Schoolhouse Street
Coquitlam
BC

Galaxy Cinemas Nanaimo
213 – 4750 Rutherford Rd
Nanaimo
BC

SilverCity Riverport
14211 Entertainment Way
Richmond
BC

Cineplex Odeon International Village
88 West Pender Street, 3rd Floor
Vancouver
BC

SilverCity Tillicum Victoria
3130 Tillicum Road
Victoria
BC

SilverCity Polo Park
817 ST. James
Winnipeg
MB

SilverCity Ancaster
771 Golf Links Road
Ancaster
ON

Galaxy Cinemas Barrie
72 Commerce Park Drive
Barrie
ON

SilverCity Brampton
50 Great Lakes DR.
Brampton
ON

Galaxy Cinemas Brantford
300 King George Road
Brantford
ON

SilverCity Burlington
1250 Brant Street
Burlington
ON

Cineplex Odeon Queensway
1025 The Queensway
Etobicoke
ON

Galaxy Cinemas Guelph
485 Woodlawn Rd West
Guelph
ON

Cineplex Odeon Gardiner’s Road
626 Gardiner’s Road
Kingston
ON

SilverCity London
1680 Richmond Street, P.O. Box 23
London
ON

Cineplex Odeon First Markham
3275 Hwy 7
Markham
ON

EMPIRE Studio 10 at Square One – #91
100 City Centre Drive
Mississauga
ON

Cineplex Odeon Niagara Square
7555 Montrose Road
Niagara Falls
ON

Galaxy Cinemas North Bay
300 Lakeshore Dr.
North Bay
ON

Cineplex Odeon Oshawa
1351 Grandview Street North
Oshawa
ON

SilverCity Gloucester
2385 City Park Drive
Ottawa
ON

SilverCity Richmond Hill
8725 Yonge Street
Richmond Hill
ON

Coliseum Scarborough
Scarborough Town Centre , 300 Borough Drive, Unit 765
Scarborough
ON

SilverCity Fairview Mall
1800 Sheppard Avenue East, Unit Y007
Toronto
ON

Scotiabank Theatre Toronto
259 Richmond Street West
Toronto
ON

Galaxy Cinemas Waterloo
550 King St. N.
Waterloo
ON

SilverCity Windsor
4611 Walker Road
Windsor
ON

Scotiabank Theatre Montreal
977 Ste-Catherine West
Montreal
QC

Cineplex Odeon Ste. Foy
1200 Boul. Duplessis
Ste-Foy
QC

Galaxy Cinemas Moose Jaw
1235 Main Street N
Moose Jaw
SK

Galaxy Cinemas Regina
420 McCarthy Blvd N. Unit 26
Regina
SK

Galaxy Cinemas Saskatoon
347 2nd Avenue S.
Saskatoon
SK

EMPIRE Studio 10 Regent Mall
1381 Regent Street
Fredericton
NB

EMPIRE 18 Cinemas & Imax Theatre – Bayers Lake
190 Chain Lake Drive
Halifax
NS

EMPIRE Studio 12 – #26
48 Kenmount Road
St. John’s
NL

To make sure you’re up to date on any theatre additions, or changes make sure to keep your eyes peeled on the Cineplex, and Funimation pages.

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