TELETOON HUMMER AND YTV'S ANIME CHANNELYesterday afternoon, before going to the University of Ottawa anime club, I walked along the Rideau Canal, taking pictures of skaters skating along "the world's largest skating rink". I may or may not post those photos here (you can see some of those photos in my Flickr account, but, when I passed by the parking bay of the Ottawa Westin Hotel on Colonel By Drive, I saw something parked there that was definitely worth posting here:
The Teletoon Hummer, or the "Teletoon Humvee", if you prefer the nickname for the military-ready General Motors sports utility vehicle that isn't also a nickname for a certain sexual act, with the Ontario license plate number "TELETOON", which doesn't actually have a number in it at all, unless those "O"s are really zeroes. I presume it was in Ottawa for Winterlude.
The back of the Humvee has the characters from two popular Fox shows, Family Guy and The Simpsons. Reruns of The Simpsons are actually shown on The Comedy Network in English, but Homer and Bart are on the back of this Humvee because Télétoon shows them in French.
The driver's side of the Humvee features original Canadian animation shown on Teletoon, though the only one of this group I'm familiar with is 6Teen, the characters in the middle, with easy-going skateboarder dude Jude Lizowski and the cynical, counter-culture, socially conscious Nikki Wong shown here. I don't know where Jen Masterson or the other characters are, but I suppose that Teletoon didn't want the whole side of the Humvee dominated by one show.
This is the front... nothing much to say. It looks like a Hummer.
The passenger side features cartoons shown on The Detour, the Teletoon equivalent of the Cartoon Network's Adult Swim block. All three shows originated on Adult Swim: Aqua Teen Hunger Force (by the way, I want one of them Boston bomb-scare Lite Brite Mooninite signs), the stop-motion animation Robot Chicken, and The Venture Bros..
Yes, there is a day/night discrepancy between these photos. I went to the anime club and realized that I didn't take a photo of the passenger side, so I went by there again on my way to McDonald's after Kamichu! was over.
And, while I'm on the subject of cartoon cable channels in Canada...
Somewhat surprisingly, the CRTC has approved YTV's application to start a (largely) anime channel.
From the DigitalHome.ca blog:
"In Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2007-41, the Government regulator approved an application from YTV Canada, Inc. for a broadcasting licence to operate a new Category 2 specialty programming called the Anime Channel.
Anime is not new to YTV which began offering a video on demand service called YTV Anime On Demand to Rogers cable customers in 2005 and has since been picked up by several cable companies including Shaw and Cogeco.
Anime generally refers to Japanese animation which itself has been influenced by the drawing style of manga, or Japanese comics.
The proposal by YTV stated the station would include a minimum of 85% animated and related programming and a maximum 15% information-based programming. The channel would be targeted at adults over the age of 18.
A Category 2 specialty channel is a specialty digital television channel which cable and satellite television providers are not required to carry.
No word yet on any launch dates or programming."
I still have some degree of skepticism as to whether any broadcaster can afford acquire enough anime to float a 24/7 cable channel and whether such a channel would attract as much interest from advertisers as a children's channel with more varied content, but, if anyone can pull it off, it's YTV. I certainly have a lot more confidence in YTV's ability to run an anime channel that can gain more than a handful of viewers than in either ADV's or Funimation's attempts.
Since the YTV anime channel would not be a subsidiary of any North American anime distributors, it would not be beholden to any particular label and could theoretically deal with any distributor for any show that's been licensed over here, from Haruhi Suzumiya to Hellsing. And, since YTV did such a good job building an audience for female-oriented anime in this country by making Sailor Moon a big success relative to Sailor Moon's slim fortunes in the United States, you can bet that there would be a large shoujo contingent in their programming. (Considering that YTV already has close ties to Viz Entertainment, I wouldn't be surprised if the not-officially-licensed-yet-but-sure-to-be-announced-soon-almost-certainly-by-Viz Ouran High School Host Club is one of the launch series on the channel. And I'd bet Viz would still love to get some of their older properties like Ranma ½ and Maison Ikkoku shown on television somewhere.)
If this anime channel thing pans out for YTV, I wouldn't be surprised if cable operators south of the border start knocking on YTV's goopy purple bubblegum monster "Keep it weird!" door to start showing the YTV anime channel in the States.
The only problem is that anime fans in Canada would finally have a better selection of anime on television than anime fans in the United States, meaning the title of Jesse Betteridge's site, Zannen, Canada, would no longer be applicable.