Toronto television legend Mark Dailey passes away at 57

When people think of Citytv, there’s a saying they directly associate with it, “Citytv… everywhere”, and Mark Dailey was the voice behind that saying. The Citytv Toronto 11PM news host was the voice of the channel for almost its entire history, and to many, he was the voice of the city. Which is understandable, as his deep yet gentle voice welcomed viewers to a variety of City’s programming, from their movies, to as mentioned before, the news casts. He also leant his voice to a variety of characters in the animation world, such as Brad Best in Beyblade, Rokusho in Medabots, and Crag in the Ripping Friends. He lost second battle with cancer this afternoon. Television in Toronto will never be quite the same.

CBC News – Canada – Mark Dailey of Citytv dies of Cancer

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YTV.com streams almost the entirety of Beyblade, January cheers, and some IFC fun

I sure hope Nelvana co-produces a remake of Card Captor Sakura so that I can see Cardcaptors streamed on Teletoon's site... Ok, fine, I'll take Medabots instead.

YTV.com’s video portal is currently streaming almost all of the entire Beyblade franchise for one of the few Canada-only streams. The original Beyblade series had an episode run of 51 episodes, however, in the YTV streams, episode 3 is missing, although this seems to have been an error, rather than a case of censorship (I couldn’t think of anything remotely offensive enough to remove an entire episode in this spinning top franchise), as the listing for the first season lists its run as 51 episodes, rather than the 50 currently on the site. Both V-Force, and G-Revolution are streaming in their entirety of their Nelvana created English dub. However, V-Force’s first episode has the opening sequence of the original season, which, if you’ve seen the redesign the characters got between seasons, is quite jarring. As V-Force has never seen any form of home release in North America, and the fact it aired over five years ago, I can’t recall if this occurred in the broadcast version of the episode. Sadly, G-Revolution’s last episode is the broadcast version. The broadcast version that neglects the slideshow epilogue that brings the first series story to a close.

As for Metal Fusion, the reboot to the franchise, only five selected episodes are currently streaming. I imagine that YTV will be changing them in intervals related to their broadcast schedule. Although the current episodes on the site are not the most recent episodes YTV has aired.

The only major omission is the first Beyblade movie, but that might fall into the hands of Miramax, and Disney, rather than Nelvana and Hasbro.

For New Years, YTV will be airing new episodes of Beyblade Metal Fusion and Pokemon DP: Sinnoh League Victors at 9AM rather than their later afternoon slots. Their later slots will be pre-empted.

Lastly, IFC Canada seems to be airing some anime again. This time the batch seems to be Virus Buster Serge, and Street Fighter II V. For show times, and any future IFC anime updates in the coming days, I’d recommend checking out Mohji’s December IFC thread as well as the weekly Anime on Canadian TV thread.

Top 5 anime series that should’ve aired in Canada but didn’t

I’m not going to lie, it was actually a bit difficult to figure out five series that haven’t aired in Canada, that could make an impact. While there is a lot that didn’t air in Canada, most of it didn’t get picked up because it wasn’t notable, or didn’t catch a following in the US. There are a tonne of series that didn’t get the exposure they deserved because of their venues, which will be the topic of a future list.

Note: Recent series have not been listed as there is still a chance they could pull through, and land a broadcaster up here. If by next year, none land a Canadian broadcaster, a new list will be made.

5. Rurouni Kenshin

Kenshin's got that pretty samurai swag.

The long running samurai epic that captivated audiences in the US was one of the few Media Blasters titles to get a TV run, well, not in Canada that is.

Why didn’t anyone pick this up?

I kind of hinted to this in the description, Media Blasters doesn’t often get series on TV, so I’d imagine trying to do a Canadian TV deal would be difficult (in actuality, none of their licensed series have aired on Canadian TV). The Los Angeles dub may have hurt it (as a good chunk of anime aired in Canada, is dubbed in Canada), I’d imagine Media Blasters inexperience, and edited, but not localized TV version of the show played a bigger role.

4. YuYu Hakusho

"I'll get you Urameshi!!"

Before Funimation had Fullmetal Alchemist, YuYu Hakusho was their other cash cow that helped transfer viewers from Dragon Ball onto something else on [AdultSwim].

Why didn’t anyone pick this up?

At the time, YTV was only airing localized series, and early YuYu Hakusho by Funimation didn’t fit this bill. The Texas dub, and the fact it was indeed picked up by Funimation (a company that rumours shown a falling out with YTV over tape delays on Dragon Ball Z, which culminated in the alternate dubs of later Z/GT/ and DB being aired, finally ending when Bionix aired Fullmetal Alchemist, and Case Closed) really didn’t help. I guess YTV felt content with Knights of the Zodiac as a transfer show…

3. Sgt. Frog

Not Hypno-Toad I'm afraid

Sgt. Frog is an insanely popular gag-manga that was later adapted into an even more popular anime series. The series features humour in the styling of Sponge Bob Square Pants, made it a much easier sell to North American audiences than, say, BoBoBoBoBoBoBo. Canada wasn’t the only country to pass on airing the Frog, as the series has yet to find a mainstream broadcaster in the US, and is in risk of not having an ongoing dub.

Why didn’t anyone pick this up?

Like every other show I’ll list on here, I can’t give you the true reason why these shows didn’t get picked up, I can only give you somewhat educated speculation.

For Frog, the series is long, spanning over 330 episodes, and ongoing, it would’ve been a big commitment for a broadcaster to handle (for a Canadian broadcaster, it would require a lot of commitment, as the show never had a Canadian dub for any sort of incentive), given that they wouldn’t be earning much if anything from the series huge merchandise line, had it proven successful. Given comedic anime’s lack of success in the US, it would’ve been a risky pick up. Secondly, the series was initially licensed by ADV and reportedly pitched incredibly hard to US networks. ADV hasn’t had a property air in Canada, and when their rights to the series were transferred to Funimation, their hard push may have soured the bed with broadcasters with the series. While we don’t know if ADV pushed for the series up here, word may have traveled, shooting down any potential Funimation had with the series. Funimation’s dub also didn’t help the cause. They spiced up the script a bit in order to catch a slightly older audience than what was initially targeted in Japan, that nearly destroys the entire thing the show had going for it.

2. Neon Genesis Evangelion

No one likes Shinji

Neon Genesis Evangelion is one of the few anime series that holds mainstream critical acclaim, and has been a proven cash cow for all the parties involved. But a popular broadcast on [AdultSwim] in the US wasn’t enough to get this emo mecha saga on the air in Canada.

Why didn’t anyone pick this up?

When the series was picked up by [AdultSwim], it was well after a failed edited run on a special edition of Toonami. At the time of the AS broadcast, Bionix, the only real venue for the show at the time, was only a year old, and had a full slate of programming largely at the hands of both Bandai Entertainment, and Viz Media. Neither party had anything to do with Evangelion, the series was actually picked up by ADV, a company who I just previously mentioned never was able to get a show on the air in Canada. ADV’s token Texas dub, and the show’s age probably didn’t help either. Though, some may argue the show’s content made it unlikely to air in Canada.

1. Mobile Suit Gundam 00

The one that got away...

Sunrise’s newest attempt at selling their Gundam franchise to the people of today would sure be guaranteed a broadcast in Canada after the incredibly successful runs of both Gundam SEED, and Gundam SEED Destiny, especially since it has a Canadian dub, right? RIGHT? Wrong. Despite airing in the United States on the SciFi network, Gundam 00 has yet to lift off in the great north, and likely won’t. Setsuna and friends are grounded.

Why didn’t anyone pick this up?

At the time of 00`s premiere in the US, the only network that could air the show, YTV, was in the process of dismantling their older youth animation block, Bionix, by dumping it on Saturday nights. This change occurred as the channel was shifting into fulfilling their Co-View strategy (a broadcast term in which lineups are created that appeal to both children and their families, it gets more eyes on the screen at once, giving the channel more efficient advertising venues than to have a Pampers commercial on at 9PM in a show that targets 14 year olds), after a change in the higher ups at Corus Entertainment`s children`s division. To make matters worse, to get the show on SciFi in the US, Bandai Entertainment had to sell partial rights to the show to Manga Entertainment. Manga Entertainment has never dealt with YTV, and in fact, Manga Entertainment`s parent company, Starz Media, has an exclusive relationship with the Canadian premium television package of Superchannel stations, which meant if it was going to air anywhere, it was going to air on Superchannel, a venue that only a fraction of the country gets. Oddly, as time went by, Gundam 00 is one of the few notable series from Manga`s Ani-Monday block to not get picked up by Superchannel, coupled that with the fact Manga Entertainment`s website and Youtube channel don`t stream Gundam 00 as they did Gurren Lagann lends to the idea that maybe Bandai didn`t sell off Gundam 00 to them. Conspiracy theorists use this, along with the fact that Bandai`s own stream of Gundam 00 was geo-locked against Canada (this has since changed, and the dub is viewable on The Anime Channel’s Youtube Page), as a sign that they did sell, or at least tried to sell Gundam 00 to someone up here. With the series having finished airing in the US more than a year ago, it`s unlikely that any broadcaster who could have the rights would use them now.

Edit: Thanks to Mohji for pointing out that the Gundam 00 Youtube streams were no longer geoblocked.

Rumor: Even more confirmation of Ocean Dragon Ball Kai?

A post on a UK based Dragon Ball fansite devoted towards the Ocean dub of the franchise provides some new light on the rumored Kai dub. This post on the forum reportedly dispels some of the doubt clouding the dub’s legitimacy after voice actor Trevor Devall later revealed that the casting session many (including myself) used as confirmation of the dub’s production, occurred a while ago, with no news really having been heard of since. More doubt was tossed in when a Funimation representative denied having any knowledge of this alternate dub (granted, I doubt they’d be the #1 source of information on that subject). This post has a forum user allegedly getting in contact with Ocean executive producer Ken Morrison who not only confirms an Ocean dub of the series, but sets the record straight on an 2011 broadcast in the United Kingdom:

I can’t say you should put much faith into this, given that it’s a forum sourcing an email. But then again, one could claim something similar in regards to this blog…

Corus and Hasbro ink deal that’ll see Hub series in Canada

Be a hero!

Surprise, surprise, Hasbro Studios and Corus Entertainment have reached an agreement which will see Corus Entertainment’s children networks (YTV, Treehouse, Nick Canada, Teletoon, and Teletoon Retro) become the exclusive Canadian home for Hasbro Studios productions. This agreement includes series such as Transformers: Prime, GI Joe: Renegades, and My Little Pony (don’t laugh) among many others. All of these programs reside on the US based television channel, The Hub, a joint network created by Hasbro and Discovery Communications aimed towards families. The channel replaced the failed Discovery Kids in the US (Corus Entertainment launched Discovery Kids Canada, to have it replaced by Nickelodeon Canada last year).

Corus picking these series up isn’t surprising. Hasbro and Corus have a long history together, a history that includes series like Beasties/Beast Wars, Beyblade (a Nelvana production that has Hasbro as the toy license owner), to even the likes of Idaten Jump (oh don’t deny it, you remember this cross-dimensional bike race series!). The real question lies within which venue these shows will end up on. Transformers is typically something YTV has aired, and very well may air again, although there lacks a proper venue for the program outside of shoe-horning it on Saturdays. My Little Pony’s previous incarnations have aired on Teletoon, but damn if that show doesn’t just scream current YTV. GI Joe is also another toss up. While GI Joe: Sigma 6 aired in full on YTV, the more recent older youth aimed GI Joe: Resolute aired on Teletoon. The Hub in question is a lot more similar to YTV than Teletoon. Both target families with programming such as sitcom repeats, game shows, etc.

While no launch date for these series were mentioned, given the lack of them being in the December highlights, it appears they will all be 2011 series.

Pokemon DP: Sinnoh League Victors on YTV, and a lump of coal for the holidays

Hello everyone, it’s been a while… I assure you, that while I am a fairly lazy procrastinator, those inhibitions were not the cause for a lack of updates on the site. Well, at least the main page. I admit that I haven’t had much movement on the topics for the site bar. Anyways, there really hasn’t been much at all to talk about. There were November and December press releases for programming schedules, but most of that was stuff I honestly had no interest in, so I wouldn’t cover it. Thankfully, this dry spell happened to occur around the exact time of mid-term, of which this procrastinating boy used time usually devoted to writing up blog entries now used for finishing assignments.

Enough about me, on to the news!

Pokemon’s a consistent franchise, it’s always a tale about Ash and his electric mouse traveling around some seemingly never-ending world and encountering new friends and foes. This consistency is probably why the franchise has been able to maintain its popularity for so long. Pokemon’s episodic plot structure allows the series to easily bring aboard new viewers at every turn, opposite to something like Digimon, which has a heavily serialized plot that is a bit difficult to pick up on depending on when you start watching the series. The latest season of Pokemon to hit up here is Pokemon DP: Sinnoh League Victors, and it’s no different.

Catch new adventures of Ash and his friends every Saturday afternoon at 12:30PM on YTV. New episodes began airing this past Saturday. Don’t blame me if you have missed an episode, reader Anime-Ash, as well as schedule wizard Mohji both mentioned that out of the blue YTV.com posted a header telling people new episodes would air yesterday afternoon, with no prior indication being shown at all. YTV has since updated their header showcase, and the Pokemon slide is no longer there.

Mohji also points out that YTV will be pre-empting the Super Anime Lineup® every Saturday afternoon in December. But it’s not all that bad, as it seems Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds will be getting a repeat slot Friday mornings at 7:00AM. So for all you duelists out there, if the latest anime episodes, manga chapters (which will start running in the English Shonen Jump by the time 5Ds’ repeat slot begins), trading cards, and video games aren’t enough to keep you full, you’ve got some blasts from the not-so-distant past to look forward to! Personally, I’m just going to sleep in. But that’s just me.

Thanks goes to Mohji, and Anime-Ash for pointing these things out.

Teletoon screws over Metajets, picks up Endangered Animals, and saves My Life Me for 2011

Metajets, not Medabots

Metajets is a promising animated series produced by South Korea’s Sunwoo Entertainment, and Canada’s own Cookie Jar Entertainment as a Teletoon production. The show premiered earlier this summer over in the US on Cartoon Network, where it was burned through rather quickly. The show was tossed aside, almost as if the only reason it was even picked up was because of an obligation to obtain something more popular (more Johnny Test?).

The series was a no show on Teletoon’s Fall 2010 schedule. Which was a bit surprising, given that it aired on Cartoon Network, and Cookie Jar Entertainment said it would air in the fall. Thanks to schedule wiz Mohji, it seems Cookie Jar was right, and English Teletoon is indeed airing the series right now. The problem is, just like Cartoon Network, they’re not giving the show a chance. Teletoon is airing the show at 6:30AM. That’s rough for an action cartoon, especially one that’s not linked to a successful property.

Now, I’ve only seen a few episodes of the series, and can’t really claim it to be some amazing bench mark of animation, I can claim the series to deserve better than that. Especially given that Teletoon’s allowed things like Skyland, and Spider Riders to live on the channel.

Sure looks like a Dumb Bunny if you catch my drift

Teletoon has greenlit a new series from Vancouver based Nerd Corps Entertainment. This series, entitled Endangered Animals, will be Nerd Corps second series for Teletoon, the first being Hot Wheels: Battle Force 5. The 26 episode first season tells the story of a pet bunny no longer bound to an owner, and a seagull who try to live in an ever more urban piece of wilderness. Sounds preachy, but I’m sure it won’t be. From the preview picture, it seems more League of Super Evil than Storm Hawks, or Dragon Booster. Which surprises me that Teletoon picked it up. The series would be perfect to compliment something like The Penguins of Madagascar (Ugh). But maybe YTV feels they’d have too much Nerd Corps on the air. Since the cancelled Storm Hawks still has loads of repeat slots, and League of Super Evil seems to be doing well. YTV also ordered a series called “Team Awethum!!!” way back when, but it’s no longer listed on Nerd Corps site, so who knows what’s up with that.

My Life Me has been a series I’ve been following for a while now. The series is a Canadian production with character designs by the creator of Dramacon, with the aesthetics being very anime-influenced. It seems it will be a while until we see it on Teletoon. While Quebec’s Teletoon has been airing the French version of the show since September, and Disney Channel Asia appears to be airing the English version right now, English Teletoon will have to wait until September 2011. Yeah, 2011. According to the show’s official site at MyLifeMe.ca it’ll launch on the English Teletoon next year. Who wants to wager if it’ll air at 6:30AM too?