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The Wild Thornberrys
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TV Series
    (September 1, 1998-June 11, 2004)
    Aired on Nickelodeon
    Klasky-Csupo Productions
    Lacey Chabert as Eliza Thornberry
    Tom Kane as Darwin the chimp
    Flea as Donnie Thornberry (the adopted wild boy)
    Danielle Harris as Debbie Thornberry
    Tim Curry as Sir Nigel Thornberry
    Jodi Carlisle as Lady Marianne (Hunter) Thornberry
    A dysfunctional family travels the world filming a documentary series about the untamed world
    Opening narrative — ‘This is me — Eliza Thornberry, part of your average family. I got a dad, a mom, and a sister. There is Donnie — we found him. And Darwin, he found us. Oh yeah, about our house — it moves, ’cause we travel all over the world. You see, my dad hosts this nature show… and my mom shoots it. Okay, so we’re not that average. And between you and me, something amazing happened… and now I can talk to animals. It’s really cool, but totally secret. And you know what? Life’s never been the same.’
    Besides Klasky and Csupo, three others are credited with the series’ creation (that’s right, five in all).
    It drew its inspiration from Dr. Doolittle — especially as it was originally conceived to be along the lines of an educational program.
    At first glance, it is easy to dismiss them a family of stereotypes (impulsive little sister, city mouse big sister, fumbling father, and rational mother).
    Real-life zoologists were brought in to guarantee an accurate description of the fauna and natives of the land. Of course, in animation, anomalies never fail to occur…
    You really shouldn’t let your children wander around unsupervised in foreign territory. For anything.
    Once the intro ends, the map will zoom into exact geographical area where the episode is based.
    The Nickelodeon president at the time said, ‘Kids started voting with the remote. Out of the gate, it was a performer.’ And eventually third only to Rugrats and Spongebob Squarepants in the ratings.
    It spawned one made-for-TV feature and two big-screen features — one crossed over with the Rugrats!
    Jane Goodall made a guest appearance.
    Like My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic a decade later, it would find a following among all age ranges. Sans potty humor.
    It is one of the few instances of Curry portraying a good guy, albeit a whacked-out patriarch.

Credit: Cool It All Right?


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