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Disney's Doug

Title card for Nickelodeon's TV series.

Doug is an American animated sitcom created by Jim Jinkins and co-produced by his studio, Jumbo Pictures (now known as Cartoon Pizza). The show focuses on the early adolescent life of its title character, Douglas "Doug" Funnie, who experiences common predicaments while attending school in his new hometown of Bluffington. Doug narrates each story in his journal, and the show incorporates many imagination sequences. The series addresses numerous topics, including trying to fit in, puppy love, bullying, and rumors. Numerous episodes center around Doug's attempts to impress his classmate, Patti Mayonnaise.

Doug originally aired on Nickelodeon in the United States of America. It, along with Rugrats and The Ren & Stimpy Show, comprised the original three Nicktoons, premiering simultaneously on August 11, 1991 and ending on January 2, 1994. Following the acquisition of the former Jumbo Pictures by Disney in 1996, the series aired on ABC as part of the former Disney's One Saturday Morning programming block. The second series premiered on September 7, 1996, and ended on June 26, 1999 while having a feature film adaptation. In 2011, the Nickelodeon series became syndicated on TeenNick's then newly debuted The 90's Are All That block.

PlotEdit

Doug Funnie and his family (which consists of his parents Theda and Phil, sister Judy, and dog Porkchop) move from the town of Bloatsburg to Bluffington after his dad receives a job promotion. Often, Doug will write in his journal about his experiences in his new hometown. Bluffington is loosely based on the city of Richmond, Virginia, due to the fact that creator Jim Jinkins was born and raised there.

ProductionEdit

Doug was created by former Nickelodeon artist Jim Jinkins in September 1990, and produced through Jinkins' production company, Jumbo Pictures, Inc. Originating with an unpublished book, Doug's Got a New Pair of Shoes, by artist and series creator Jim Jinkins and writer Joe Aaron, the 1991 animated series Doug emerged on the Nickelodeon TV channel. The series was originally going to be called The Funnies, but Nickelodeon changed it to Doug because of the double entendre. The idea for "Quailman", an imaginary superhero whom Doug often pretends to be in the cartoon, was inspired by a similar superhero invented by Jinkins when he was younger. The "quail call" is based on Colinus virginianus' (Northern Bobwhite quail or Virginia quail), even though the actual bird does not have an archetypal top knot (as Doug displays with the belt on his forehead).

Nickelodeon series (1991–1994)Edit

Doug premiered on Nickelodeon on August 11, 1991 where it continued until January 2, 2000, and was aired in reruns until 2003, being the first Nicktoon. Doug was rerun on Nick Jr. from February 2, 1999 until March 31, 2002, during its 1999-2002 Noggin teenage era years before Noggin went preschool and eventually changed names to Nick Jr. in 2009. Doug later aired in reruns on Nick Jr./Noggin's night-time shift block, The N, from April 1, 2002 until February 12, 2003, and was in reruns again until September 2006. Doug was one of the only Nicktoons to air on Nick Jr./Noggin. Doug aired on Nick on CBS from September 14, 2002 until September 11, 2004. As of 2009, Nickelodeon's Doug airs reruns on MTV Tr3s affiliates bb KBEH and KMOH-TV (as an E/I program) in the US and had also aired on Nicktoonsters in the UK.

In the first episode, Douglas Yancey Funnie and his family (Phil, Theda and sister Judy) arrive in a new town called Bluffington after moving away from their former residence in Bloatsburg. There, he meets Skeeter, Patti, Roger and Beebe, and his new life in a new town begins.

During the course of the show's run, it won two Kids' Choice Awards (one in 1992 and one in 1995).

Reruns of Nickelodeon's Doug began airing on TeenNick on July 25, 2011 as part of a newly created block airing Nickelodeon's programming from the 1990s called The 90's Are All That. On August 24, 2011, TeenNick announced it will be replacing the show with Hey Arnold! on September 5, 2011. Reruns returned to TeenNick for The '90s Are All That on September 26, 2011, until March 18, 2013.

Disney series (1996–1999)Edit

In 1996, The Walt Disney Company purchased Jim Jinkins' company, Jumbo Pictures, along with the rights to Doug. Disney ordered new episodes of the show, first named Brand Spanking New! Doug, then Disney's Doug. These shows ran from 1996 to 1999.

Several differences between the Nickelodeon and Disney shows exist. Doug was now being voiced by Tom McHugh, and the character of Roger by Chris Phillips, due to Billy West's refusal to return because of payment conflicts with Disney. West would later say that he didn't like the Disney series, citing McHugh's performance as Doug as the reason why.

The show also changed theme songs, with the vocalise tune used on Nickelodeon replaced by a mostly whistled tune in the Disney version. Many changes were addressed in Doug's Last Birthday, the first episode of the Disney series. The episode takes place 3 months after the Nickelodeon series, making everyone a few months older. As such, Doug is now twelve years old instead of eleven. Skeeter mentions that Doug sounds different, a nod to the recasting of Doug with Tom McHugh. Disney made a number of aesthetic changes to the characters. Doug, for example, has a slightly different outfit, Judy's hair is no longer shaved on the sides, and Connie has lost a considerable amount of weight.

Honker Burger (a parody of the real-life In-N-Out Burger) has gone bankrupt and replaced with a French restaurant named Chez Honque, leaving Mr. Swirly's as the new hangout for most of the characters (Mr. Swirly was a character that appeared a few times during the Nickelodeon years).

Roger's mother suddenly becomes rich after selling the land their trailer is on to Bill Bluff for a large amount of money. She and Roger move into a mansion and get new outfits and hairstyles. Incidentally, Roger is rude to Doug far less of the time than he was in the Nickelodeon series, although when he does lash out at Doug, Roger is far more cruel.

The next episode, Doug's New School, introduced Beebe Bluff Middle School, with Emily Kristal becoming Doug's new teacher, Bone transferring to the school with the same job that he had at Bluffington Elementary, and former mayor Bob White (In the Nickelodeon episode Doug Runs, Tippi Dink defeated him in an election, becoming mayor for the rest of the series) becoming the principal. A later Christmas episode called Doug's Secret Christmas introduced a baby sister named Cleopartra "Dirtbike" Funnie. In addition to these changes, Skunky Beaumont also became a prominent character in the Disney series, having been mentioned but never seen or heard in the Nickelodeon series.

Unlike the Nickelodeon series, where every episode focused on Doug with him narrating, the Disney series had several episodes that also focused on several other characters, usually without any narration at all. For example, the episode "Doug's Chubby Buddy" focuses on Patti, and features no narration, save for a brief PSA made by Patti at the end.

On March 15, 1995, Disney premiered a new musical stage show, "Doug Live!" at Disney's Hollywood Studios (at the time known as Disney-MGM Studios) at the Walt Disney World Resort. The show ran until May 12, 2002. Additionally, a theatrical feature-length film, Doug's 1st Movie was released on March 26, 1999, before production on the television show ceased. During this time, meet-and-greet costumed versions of Doug and Patti were seen in Disney World. The characters have been retired, but sometimes make appearances. Following the stage show, a version for Game Boy Color was released in 1996, titled Doug's Big Game.

During the course of the show, Doug was nominated for at least two Daytime Emmy Awards.

Disney aired their series as part of ABC's Saturday Morning lineup in 1996 (following Disney's purchasing of the network), and the show became part of Disney's One Saturday Morning block in 1997. Despite controversy from various fans of the Nickelodeon series, it proved to be a very popular show, spanning a number of different types of merchandise, and was for a time the most popular show on the block, with the title quickly taken by Recess.

In the Disney series, every episode was a full-length episode of about 22 minutes, split into three segments. In the Nickelodeon series, most episodes were composed of two 11-minute segments. The only exceptions are the premiere, Christmas, and Halloween episodes, which were full-length episodes split into two segments.

Broadcast historyEdit

Nickelodeon Series

  • Nickelodeon (1991–1994; 2007)
  • Nick Jr. (1999–2002)
  • Nicktoons (2002–2006)
  • TeenNick (2011–2013)
  • Nickelodeon (UK and Ireland) (1994–2010)
  • Nicktoons (UK and Ireland) (2002–2010)
  • Nicktoonsters (2008–2009)
  • Channel 4 (1994–1997)
  • CITV (1992)

Disney Series

  • ABC (1996–2001)
  • The Disney Afternoon (1997–2001)
  • UPN (1999–2002)
  • Disney Channel (2001–2002)
  • Toon Disney (2001–2005)
  • Disney Channel (UK and Ireland) (1997–2000)
  • Toon Disney (UK and Ireland) (2000–2006)
  • CITV (1997–1998)

Home video releasesEdit

Sony Wonder released a series of Doug videos between 1993 and 1996. Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (originally Walt Disney Home Video) released four videos of Disney's Doug in 1997; each collection featured two episodes.

In 2008, Nickelodeon partnered with Amazon.com to allow new and old programming to be made available on DVD through CreateSpace. As part of the deal, Amazon.com is responsible for producing the discs (on one time burnable media) on-demand as well as cover and disc art. Seasons 3 and 4 of Doug were released on DVD on December 8, 2009, and December 22, 2009, respectively.

Season 4 was supposed to be released as a complete season, but Nickelodeon was unable to locate two episodes from the final Nickelodeon season of the show, and opted to rename the DVD release Doug: The Best of Season 4.

All Nickelodeon episodes, including the two that are missing from the season 4 DVD, are available from video on demand services such as iTunes Store, PlayStation Network, and Zune Marketplace.

Nick DVD name Release date Discs Episodes
Season 1 (1991) August 29, 2008 3 13
Season 2 (1992) August 29, 2008 3 13
Season 3 (1993) December 8, 2009 3 13
Season 4 (1994) December 22, 2009 3 13