TV SERIES - Scaredy Squirrel airs on YTV

I just checked out Scaredy Squirrel at it's home on the YTV site and it looks pretty amazing. The voices and dialogue in the preview videos were top notch and definitely designed to cater to kids as well as their more media savvy parents. The animation also looks to be fast paced and engaging with excellent anticipation using squash and stretch to emphasize physical humour gags as well as character emotions through out.

As you can see the original Scaredy Squirrel character design (upper left pic) has undergone the required redesign (bottom right pic) to make the character animator friendly by adding longer limbs and emotive eyes (eye whites, pupils, & eye brows).

Once you start looking you can actually pick out a lot of the design changes that happened during the development process for this animation. I think this is a show where it would have been fascinating to watch the back and forth between the creator, Mélanie Watts, and the development team at Nelvana as they worked toward a consensus on the overall aesthetic for the show.

The one thing that I'm interested to see is whether this animation is going to resonate with kids. I feel like it's almost a bit ahead of it's time (which can be great or completely disastrous) and some of the humour could be a bit sophisticated, but I'm no expert on kids animation. So if there are any kids out there that watch Scaredy Squirrel on YTV feel free to chime in and let me know what you like or don't like about the show.

Just to go back to the 'being ahead of it's time' this is the first kids animation I've heard of that is following the popularity of 'The Office', albeit a kinder version, maybe more along the line of 'The Promotion'. So it will be interesting to see what happens with it. I'm a fan of that humour though, so I'll be tuning in.

Anyway, if you're interested, here are a couple excerpts from the Corus press release:
Corus Entertainment is pleased to announce that its popular Kids Can Press title book character Scaredy Squirrel is starring in his very own animated series. A Canadian original production produced by Nelvana Studio, Scaredy Squirrel will premiere on Sunday, April 3 at 9:30 a.m. ET/PT on YTV.

Scaredy Squirrel gives kids a new kind of hero to cheer for,” said Lisa Lyons, President, Kids Can Press. “Mélanie Watt has created a character who’s instantly relatable and hilarious in his attempts to be brave. Kids and adults have made him a publishing hit and he’s destined to become one of the funniest and most endearing screen characters, too.”

Mélanie Watt is the bestselling author and illustrator of the Scaredy Squirrel and Chester series. Her other books include Have I Got a Book for You!, Augustine, Leon the Chameleon and the Learning with Animals series. Watt lives near Montreal, Quebec.

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