Saturday, May 15, 2010

Cartoon Network’s superhero summer

(Published May 16, PDI-Entertainment)

By Oliver M. Pulumbarit


The epic struggle between good and evil takes center stage in Cartoon Network’s “Hero Up” summer programming, as shows centering on classic and new superheroes become part of its daily run. From comic book crusaders to original animated characters, the ongoing focus on heroism appeals to a wide range of viewers.

Batman, Spider-Man, Ben Tennyson and other champions make summer viewing lively for Filipino kids, according to Turner Entertainment Networks Asia’s Branding and Communications Vice President Lucien Harrington.

“At Cartoon Network, content is king and we are constantly on the lookout for new programs to keep our lineup fresh and exciting,” Harrington said. “For ‘Hero Up,’ with our recent acquisition of Marvel titles and our existing line up of adventure series, it made sense to showcase these great cartoons together. Our content reflects universally popular themes such as comedy, action and adventure, but most of all, fun – as we strive to animate kids’ lives everywhere.”

The shows don’t necessarily appeal to male audiences only, Harrington added.

“While on the surface most of the cartoons appear to be predominantly appealing to boys, there are plenty of strong female characters that girls can identify with as well. We have Gwen Tennyson, Ben’s super-powered and intelligent cousin. There is also Drew Saturday from ‘The Secret Saturdays,’ Raven and Starfire from ‘Teen Titans,’ and ‘Powerpuff Girls Z.’ And ‘Wolverine and the X-Men’ will showcase Storm, Shadowcat, Rogue and Emma Frost. Girls should be able to find cool role models in cartoons and see themselves as strong and powerful heroes as well.”

Cartoon Network continues to attract younger viewers in Asia and the Philippines because of “relevant” programming, Harrington said.

“We speak the language of the playground and we bring fun that kids can laugh about in the same way they laugh with their friends. We never stop creating or delivering new content, and it’s what keeps us relevant and interesting to our fans.”

“Hero Up” includes weekday airings of “Ben 10” (8 a.m.), “The Secret Saturdays” (9 a.m.), “Spectacular Spider-Man” (9:30 a.m.) “Batman: The Brave and the Bold” (10 a.m.), “Ben 10: Alien Force” (10:30 a.m.), “Teen Titans” (11 a.m.), and “Powerpuff Girls Z” (11:30 a.m.). On weekends, Cartoon Network airs “League of Super Evil” (8:30 a.m.). “Wolverine and the X-Men,” “Iron Man: Armored Adventures” and “Super Hero Squad” start airing this month.

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