Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Big Magic Bus

Reconfigured in CGI, no less.

Netflix and Scholastic Media announced Wednesday they will join forces to launch a new series for kids, based on the award-winning '90s hit “The Magic School Bus.”

The original series featured a wacky schoolteacher, Ms. Frizzle, who brought her students on fantastical, yet educational, adventures on her unique school bus. Based on a series of children’s books, “The Magic School Bus” first aired on TV in 1994.

The new show, titled “The Magic School Bus 360°," will be a CGI re-imagining of the original series. The reboot will feature a modernized Ms. Frizzle and her class, along with a new bus equipped with some inventive and high-tech equipment to help a new generation of kids explore the world of science. The 26 new episodes will be available to stream on Netflix in 2016. ...

The series originally aired on PBS two decades ago; these days, PBS is holding fast to Curious George and Netflix is gobbling up various properties.

It's remarkable that the boys and girls are going CGI with this one, since CG shows sometimes perform well on the t.v. but often don't. And the hand-drawn format often comes out on top.

Meanwhile, Netflix seems to be content with its hand-drawn version of Turbo, and I can tell you that a number of other DreamWorks Animation shows will be in the time-honored, hand-drawn format.


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