Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Farewell to the Noods, it's been a pleasure.
Back in 2008 Cartoon Network wanted to do a rebrand and were looking for something that would make their network stand out and give them an identity through their programming bumpers, they looked to a company called Capacity to come up with their new look and it was not too soon after that the Noods, as they have become known as, were born. They started off with a very simple design, they were solid colored little characters that resembled bowling pins with arms and they ran around the screen doing a multitude of different activities that included skateboarding, running, jumping, fighting, throwing and playing jokes on each other. It was genius. Eventually they began making Noods that resembled different characters from shows that currently ran on Cartoon Network and the characters began interacting with each other in skits that had a fun atmosphere to them, in my personal opinion it made the network feel special. Soon after the new look debuted I found myself watching my favorite shows and being excited for a commercial break so I could see which Nood bumper they were going to air next or if they were going to air a brand new one, it was exciting to me and it was a small part of what made Cartoon Network so special. Come the autumn and winter seasons the network incorporated the Noods into their special holiday bumpers for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas in 2008 (reusing them in 2009), it helped to keep the rebrand fresh and a lot of the hardcore CN fans were delighted with the segments as some of them were cute and had comedic value.
Soon after the Noods arrived on television, CN/Capacity began creating special Noods that would represent different areas of the network to further enhance special programming. A special blue Nood appeared on CN's Har Har Tharsday's comedy block, a golden Nood with a crown often referred to as "King Nood" or "The King" was the mascot for their Friday night action blocked called You Are Here, and a special Nood was created for CN's Saturday night movie portion called Action Flicks that looked like a tough guy sporting a leather jacket and a tooth pick.
After a while other representations of the Noods were created to freshen things up after a long period of not having updated bumpers, these spots were live action and featured large, non-animated Noods being painted, muddied, cleaned, covered in confetti and being photographed by live people. While they were generally liked, they didn't receive the same kind of love and admiration given to their animated counterparts but the Nood look was still largely in effect on Cartoon Network, in fact the only part of the network that still featured an animated Nood was You Are Here which still had "The King" as it's host.
A lot of people figured that once the live action Nood bumpers hit the air that CN was biding their time while they ready themselves for their official rebrand (rumored to happen in 2010) and they were right. In May of 2010 the official rebrand took to the air and the Noods were officially gone from Cartoon Network, I was personally sad to see them go but from what I had gathered I think most of the CN faithful were ready for a new look and feel to debut on their beloved network. Would I have dumped the Noods after only 2 years on the network? Probably not. I most likely would have freshened things up with new bumps and found a way to keep them around for at least 1 more year, that way consistancy would have been apparent, but CN seems like they want to constantly be moving forward and are often debuting a new look for their network. No big deal, the 2010 rebrand has been pretty enjoyable and the shows have pretty much remain the same, so all in all I'm pretty happy.
I've come to terms with the fact that rebrands happen, and in CN's case they will probably continue to happen often, but the Noods will always live on in both my heart and the hearts of many of the networks fans as a small, but fun piece of Cartoon Network's long and storied history.
As always I want to thank those who took the time to read my blog, it's much appreciated and you can always check me out at www.twitter.com/manga4life as well as TZ and JD.