Last month Cartoon Network unveiled their 2017-2018 slate of shows, and alongside returning favorites like Adventure Time and Steven Universe, they also announced six brand new shows that will be premiering within the next television season. Two of these series, Ben 10 and Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs are based on existing properties, but four of the newly announced shows are completely new, so I thought it would be interesting to take a closer look at these four new shows to see what they are all about.
Apple & Onion
The first new show is called Apple & Onion, and it is centered around the two titular characters as they have strange misadventures in a big city full of other living foods. The show was first previewed as a Cartoon Network Mini, a short on their YouTube channel, in May of last year, before being picked up to series. You can watch that short here.
When I first heard about the show, I expected something along the lines of Disney XD’s Pickle and Peanut, but judging from the tone set by this short, it seems to have a feel a lot closer to that of The Amazing World of Gumball. This is probably for a reason, as the creator (and voice of Apple) is George Gendi, a storyboard artist from Gumball. As someone who is already a huge fan of Gumball, I will be excited to see where this series goes. I loved the voices, which included Eugene Mirmen and Kevin Micheal Richardson, and the short was pretty funny. While some of the humor was hit or miss for me, overall I liked it, and I definitely think it has potential.
Craig of the Creek
Not much is known yet about Craig of the Creek, beyond a vague description and one promotional image. The series is apparently going to be set in a “Kid Utopia” and will follow the titular Craig and his friends as they have adventures in tree forts with tribes of children and dirt bike ramps.
Not enough is known about the show for me to feel strongly one way or the other, but it was created by Ben Levin and Matt Burnett, both of whom have been writers on Steven Universe. As Steven Universe is one of my favorite current animated series, this speak highly of the potential that this show could have.
Summer Camp Island
There is not too much information about Summer Camp Island available yet, but like Apple & Onion, it also started with a short. However, this short is not available online as it has been making its way around the film festival circuit. The closest we can come is a very short clip from the Toronto International Film Festival, which you can watch here.
The show was created by Julia Pott, an illustrator who has done some work for Adventure Time, as well as voice the role of Emily in the 2015 Oscar nominated short, World of Tomorrow. It has a very unique, storybook looking feel to it, and all the characters are quite cute. I like what I’ve seen so far, so I am hoping that this could be a win for Cartoon Network.
OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes
OK K.O. began its journey to series with a short in 2013 called Lakewood Plaza Turbo, which later became a series of shorts and free mobile games in 2016. You can watch the original short here.
Since this was a pilot episode, the art style has gone through some changes, and the show that will be airing will have a bit of a fresher look. When Cartoon Network first announced the new series they also released the title sequence, so we can get a look at what the final show will probably look like.
OK K.O. was created by Ian Jones-Quartey, who many cartoon fans will know from his work on Adventure Time and Steven Universe, as well as for his voice work on the web series Bravest Warriors where he plays Wallow. This alone is enough to get me interested in the show, though I have to admit I am not completely sold on the art style yet. I will not count that against it though, because when I first started watching Adventure Time I did not like the art at all, but it soon became one of my favorite cartoons.
So these are all the new shows coming to Cartoon Network in the year or so, what are your opinions on them? Personally I love that they all have such diverse styles, and each one looks to be completely unique. Too many cartoons these days just feel like they are copying each other’s styles, and the uniqueness in these preview images and shorts is really refreshing. I really hope that these qualities will stick around by the time the shows finally make it to air.
What do you think about these shows? Are you excited for them, or are you reserving judgment?
Jonathan North is writer, photographer, video editor, and animation fan from Iowa. He studied advertising and design at Iowa State University, and also has degrees in multimedia and art. His favorite movie is Fantasia, and his favorite cartoon is Gravity Falls. Or maybe Steven Universe. He can’t decide. You can find more of his work on his blog, as well as his Podcast and YouTube channel, where he reviews animation, movies, TV, or whatever else his guests feel like talking about. You can find him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, @jonjnorth.