Sunday, March 1, 2015

Gadget Is Here For The Birthday (Comic-Book Style)

It's my birthday today, and I kind of feel like posting something... so how's this for a semi-narsissistic change of pace? It's the cover of a British comic book issue which was in stores just around the time I was born in 1988.

This is issue number 3 (February-March 1988) of a short-lived, UK comic book magazine published bi-monthly by Marvel Comics in London. Marvel had nothing to do with producing the magazine's contents; they simply translated and adapted issues of the French "Inspecteur Gadget" magazine published by Greantori for several years in the 80s. Greantori's comics were adapted from TV episodes, and were for the most part pretty awful: Badly paced storytelling coupled with amateurish drawings which were usually traced off of stills from the given episode. The one saving grace was the cover art, which almost always looked terrific. The covers were also based on existing artwork - model sheets, promotional art or episode motives - but were much better drawn than anything inside.

I quite like the above cover for Marvel's third issue. Yeah, the characters are posed somewhat generically, and there are some off-model colors, but Gadget, Penny and Brain still look very, very nice. I also like the gallery of faces in the left-hand margin, and the title logo here looks noticeably better than the classic American merchandising logo (with the possible exception of the squeezed "O", which seems to be redrawn from the "U" in the French "Inspecteur Gadget" logo).

The entire cover for Marvel's No. 3 was clearly taken from the French Greantori publication "album n°2" which I believe collected several stories from the standard magazine issues. I don't know the exact publication date of the French album, but here it is for comparison:

And that's not all for this motive, either. To continue the game of connect-the-dots: in 1993, the German publisher Bastei-Verlag used it for a one-off "Inspektor Gadget" comic published as issue 9 of their magazine series "Bastei Fernseh-Comic" ("television comic"). This time, however, the actual Greantori artwork was not used. Bastei's cover is apparently traced from the Greantori art instead, for whatever reason (specifically from the Marvel cover, I think, looking at the juxtaposition of elements and Gadget's speech bubble) - and it has to be said that the inking and character drawing is not nearly as accomplished as on the French and British covers. Still interesting to see, though.

Gadget's speech bubble line: "There is no problem that is a problem to me!"
The story inside is based on the episode "Gadget's Replacement". Its German TV episode 
title is actually "Arbeitslos", but it's titled "Die Computer-falle" in this comic book.

(With thanks to GC for providing the magazine images seen in this post.)

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

BREAKING: The New Inspector Gadget Series Premieres on Netflix in the United States on March 27, 2015

Via DHX's official press room, some VERY interesting news for American Inspector Gadget fans...

Halifax, Toronto, Vancouver, Los Angeles, London. 25 February 2015. DHX Media, a key player internationally in the creation of content for families and children, has licensed Netflix as the exclusive US home for its new Inspector Gadget series. The new CGI, 26-episode series is expected to premier on Netflix US this March. It will also appear on Netflix at later dates in Latin America, the U.K., Ireland, Benelux, France and the Nordics following initial broadcast in each country. 
Inspector Gadget is one of those classic properties that’s perfect for a contemporary version,” Josh Scherba, SVP Distribution at DHX Media, stated. “We are delighted that, beginning this March in the US, the bumbling bionic detective will reach a whole new generation of fans on Netflix.”

Here's an excerpt of Netflix's announcement as well:

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., Feb. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- A secret agent mouse, a cyborg detective, crazy outback animals, and a group of kids who run a toy company, are just a few of the adventurous and funny characters joining the world's leading Internet TV network beginning this year. Working with award-winning global partners, Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX) is adding five new animated and live-action comedy series to its already broad selection of high-quality kids and family entertainment. (...)

Inspector Gadget – March 2015 
Everyone's favorite bumbling bionic detective, Inspector Gadget, is back in an all new CGI animated series. Dr. Claw has reactivated his global crime syndicate MAD and Inspector Gadget must stop him! Backed up by his niece, Penny, her dog Brain, and an arsenal of high-tech gadgetry, the lovable Gadget fights crime as only he can. (...)

This puts a definite "outdated" stamp on the news from last June that the series would air on Cartoon Network in the States. After Cartoon Network recently announced its 2015-16 upfront without a mention of the Inspector Gadget reboot, I was half-way expecting Boomerang to be the show's destination in the U.S. too... so this came completely out of the blue for me. On the plus side, I'm guessing the series will be presented in HD on Netflix, which might perhaps not have been the case had it come to Boomerang in the States.

Interesting, by the way, that Netflix in numerous other countries will also feature the series sometimes after its initial Boomerang airings. This apparently includes my own country, Norway, under the "Nordics" section. (About that: The Boomerang premiere in the Nordics - Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland, Finland - seems to be happening soon, as indicated by videos like this on the Norwegian Boomerang site, but I've been unable to find premiere dates for Norway and other Scandinavian/Nordic countries yet. If anyone should know, please comment about it.)

UPDATE (February 26): Here's a very short teaser ad from Netflix's official YouTube channel, mentioning the March 27 launch date:

Saturday, February 21, 2015

French Dubbing Studio Uses Interesting Promotional Image

Okay, I hadn't actually expected to return to the blog quite so soon, but this is hilarious.

I just came across the site of Audio Postproduction SPR Inc., a studio which specializes in postproduction servives such as dubbing to other languages. According to their list of dubbed projects, DHX's new Inspector Gadget is one of many animated children's series that SPR have dubbed into French, and - well, have a look at their presentation site:

It really was just a question of time, am I right? Cortoony's beautifully rendered mustache version of the new CGI Gadget always looked real enough to be an actual promotional image. And now, as we can see, it is! Expect Mustache Gadget to turn up on official DVD and Blu-ray covers for the new series shortly.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Status Update, With A Question

Just in case someone should want to know, not much will be happening here for the next few days. I have a few posts coming up which I really feel are overdue, but they'll not be out until the end of this week at the earliest, since I'm really busy at the moment. Stay tuned and feel free to comment anyhow! While I'm at it, is there anything in specific (both related to the new TV series or in general) that YOU would like me to post about?

Boomerang Netherlands Premieres the New Inspector Gadget Series Today (February 2) at 7:15

Oh, and... it seems Boomerang Netherlands will also debut the new Gadget series today, in regular daily broadcast. So will the Boomerang CEE (Central Eastern Europe) feed at large, but something I didn't realize until very recently is that Boomerang Netherlands operates independently, which makes it worthy of its own news post, I suppose. Here's a January 31 Boomerang press release excerpt from TV Visie:

Gloednieuwe shows op Boomerang en 'LEGO Ninjago' op Cartoon Network 
Hoera! Cartoon Network viert de 30ste verjaardag van Inspector Gadget met deze gloednieuwe animatieserie. Inspector Gadget is 's werelds bekendste bionische detective en is nogal stuntelig. (...) 
Vanaf 2 februari, iedere schooldag om 7.15 en 15.55 uur. (...)

In English:

Brand new shows on Boomerang and "LEGO Ninjago 'on Cartoon Network 
Hooray! Cartoon Network celebrates the 30th anniversary of Inspector Gadget with this brand new animated series. Inspector Gadget is the world's most famous bionic detective and is rather clumsy. (...) 
As of February 2, every school day at 7:15 and 15:55. (...)

So... exactly the same airing schedule as for Boomerang CEE as a whole, but still a separate feed. Now we know.

By the way: dear Dutch press release writers, do you REALLY think Inspector Gadget's 30th anniversary is still an ongoing thing? The jubilee took place in September of 2013. Seriously, guys, give it a rest.

Boomerang Italy Pre-Premieres "Gadget 2.0" Today (February 2) at 19:00

Small update to mention this:

Un febbraio rivoluzionario su Boomerang, canale 609 di Sky, poiché è tempo di novità! Dal 2 febbraio il canale dei classici e dei cult dell’animazione sorprenderà i suoi piccoli e grandi spettatori con un nuovo logo, una nuova grafica e tante novità in palinsesto. 
Per festeggiare il “nuovo look” del canale il 2 febbraio alle 19 arrivano in anteprima i primi due episodi della nuova serie de L’Ispettore Gadget, che dal 16 febbraio andrà in onda in esclusiva Prima TV su Boomerang tutti i giorni alle 19.00. (...)

In English:

A February revolution on Boomerang, channel 609 on Sky, because it is time for news! February 2 the channel of classic and cult animation will surprise its small and big audiences with a new logo, a new look and many new features in the schedule. 
To celebrate the "new look" of the channel comes on February 2 at 19:00 the first two episodes of the new series of Inspector Gadget, which from February 16 will air exclusively in first-run premiere on Boomerang daily at 19:00. (...)

So to everyone in Italy reading this: Tune in today - or more to the point, this evening - to catch the first half-hour episode of the new series. Because, yes, that's what the above press release actually means. You get both parts of "Gadget 2.0", which really is episode 1 (1a and 1b) from a production perspective. The reason I'm so sure of this is, Sky's TV Guide for Boomerang tells us that today's Ispettore Gadget broadcast lasts for 25 minutes (and the link to the airing itself includes the episode title):

Friday, January 30, 2015

Big Video Ad Roundup

A number of video ads I've observed over the past several weeks haven't yet found their way into a post, so here's a roundup of all the ads not featured before. Let me know if you find others!

First, here's a very recent English-language trailer which was strangely uploaded by CartoonNetworkBG, CN's official, Bulgarian YouTube channel. (Wouldn't the series on Boomerang Bulgaria be in Bulgarian language?)

...and here is the exact same trailer in Romanian language! Uploaded by the official CNetworkRomania channel.

Here's one which was published back on January 10 by OSN, a channel provider operating within the Middle East and Africa. Notice that this uses the same English narrator - and even many of the same lines - as the above ad from CN Bulgaria.

Also worth noting is that the OSN trailer is basically an English-language version of the below French trailer (which I already posted here), with slightly different background music.

Moving on to Boomerang UK, here's a general preview of the new UK slate, with Gadget popping up at 00:23.

And here's a UK trailer specifically for Inspector Gadget. The quality is pretty terrible, and the beginning of the ad seems to be missing, but it will do until a better version pops up online.

From Super RTL, a trailer for the many new kids' series in their TOGGO program block. Gadget clips at 00:17 and 00:55.

Finally, for the sake of completion, here's an ad for the Southeast Asia feed. It's very similar to the one I posted here from TVB Network Vision, including the same clip of Gadget at 00:14; but with different background music and (at times) editing.