For most of this year, the major children’s programming networks have been aiming to revive Saturday morning blocks after what seemed to be a slimming of new content. Cartoon Network has moved nearly all of its previous primetime content to Saturday mornings, as they now precede a one-hour Warner Brothers Animation showcase in DC Nation with Green Lantern and Young Justice. Nickelodeon is hoping for the same success as they’ve recently debuted the well-received Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles CGI-series that has been grasping old and new fans alike.
But could it be this Saturday morning competition that has Cartoon Network running for the hills? That seemed to be the case as this past Saturday the network pulled the previously announced new episodes of DC Nation which caused quite the online stir in the process. Now there may be some reason to worry as DC Nation won’t be back until the new year.
Cartoon Network has revealed that with a schedule previously set involving multiple weekends of new installments, DC Nation will be going on an abrupt hiatus until January 2013. After plenty of promotion for the new block and a months-long summer hiatus, the absence of both Green Lantern and Young Justice this past Saturday after just returning to air was met with outrage from fans when it was suddenly replaced by repeats of Dragons: Riders of Berk and Johnny Test. No specific reason for the switch has yet surfaced.
Green Lantern producer Giancarlo Volpe remained the most vocal on the day of the replacement, taking to Twitter saying:
“I don’t know if the DC Nation rumor is true or not. Unfortunately we artists are often kept in the dark in regards to when our shows air. Here’s my two cents: If the rumor proves to be true, I suggest everyone tweet @cartoonnetwork and let them know how they feel about it. My DVR thought it taped GLTAS anyway. Now when (and if) the actual Steam Lantern episodes airs, it will think it’s a rerun and not record. I wonder how bad it would be if I just uploaded the Steam Planet episode to YouTube? You Dont Give A F*ck Then I Dont Give A F*ck…It makes me feel better that Young Justice and Green Lantern fans are uniting in the wake of this. Appreciate the love.”
The rumors that Volpe speak of is that ultimately Cartoon Network is scared of TMNT‘s massive performance and wants to avoid the hard-hitting series until it’s in repeat mode. The only problematic logic in that statement is the fact that TMNTand DC Nation completely avoid timeslots whatsoever. Furthermore, The Legend of Korra (which brought in higher numbers) aired in the same exact timeslot while avoiding any direct competition as both blocks did well.
Cancellation of DC Nation certainly seems out of the question on top of everything as plans for 2013 have already been put into the place with an expansion of the block to include Beware the Batman and Teen Titans Go. Whether or not it will change times or dates has yet to be determined, however.
Oddly enough, the new episodes previously set to air this past weekend were still uploaded to iTunes and were available for purchasing. It’s likely now that Cartoon Network may take these episodes down, but it was at least a silver lining in a day filled with fan anger.
We’ll keep you updated on any further developments regarding the jeopardy of the block and Cartoon Network’s plans for DC Nation in the near future.