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Eureeka's Castle facts for kids

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Eureeka's Castle
Eureekas.jpg
Title card
Genre Children's
Fantasy
Created by Judy Katschke
Written by R. L. Stine (head writer)
Creative director(s) Eli Noyes
Starring
  • Cheryl Blaylock
  • Noel MacNeal
  • Jim Kroupa
  • Pam Arciero
  • Lynn Hippen
  • Brian Muehl
Composer(s) Peter Lurye
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 3
No. of episodes 90
52 (season 3)
Production
Executive producer(s) Kit Laybourne
Producer(s)
  • Kathleen Minton
  • Michael Holman (1989–1991)
Production location(s) Nickelodeon Studios (1991)
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time
  • 51 minutes
  • 25–27 minutes (season 3)
Production company(s) Noyes & Laybourne Enterprises
Distributor MTV Networks
Release
Original network Nickelodeon
Original release September 4, 1989 (1989-09-04) – November 10, 1991 (1991-11-10)

Eureeka's Castle is an American children's television series which aired on Nick Jr. from September 4, 1989 to September 4, 1991. The program featured various puppet characters who live in a giant's wind-up music box. The show was a joint development by Nickelodeon, animators Kit Laybourne and Eli Noyes of Noyes & Laybourne Enterprises, and the puppeteers at 3/Design Studio. R. L. Stine developed the characters and was the head writer for the episodes.

Synopsis

The show follows various puppet characters (in the style of Sesame Street), including Eureeka, a sorceress-in-training. Eureeka and her friends live in a wind-up castle music box owned by a friendly giant. Other characters include Magellan the dragon, twin moat dwellers Bogge and Quagmire, Batly the bat, and Mr. Knack the handyman. There are also various appearing creatures such as mice, singing fish statues called the Fishtones, Magellan's pets Cooey and the Slurms, and Batly's pet spider Webster.

Halfway through the episode, an animated short based on a children's book (usually acquired from Children's Circle) was shown. Also featured were shorter animated and live-action short films, and European imports such as Animal Fair, Roobarb, The Shoe People, Towser, James the Cat, Barbapapa, Ric The Raven, Le Piaf, Plonsters, Philipp, and Gran.

Characters

  • Eureeka (performed by Cheryl Blaylock) – The title character and protagonist. Eureeka is a friendly sorceress-in-training. Her spells are not successful most of the time, but she keeps trying until she gets it right.
  • Magellan (performed by Noel MacNeal) – A large green baby dragon with a tail that has a mind of its own. He doesn't always understand new concepts. Magellan tends to make great big sneezes that can shake the whole castle whenever he gets upset. He has a mother-son relationship with Eureeka. According to Eureeka, Magellan will do anything to try and stay awake past bedtime.
    • Cooey (performed by Lynn Hippen) – Magellan's pet of indeterminate species.
    • Slurms – Magellan's pet worm hybrids. They were animated using clay animation.
    • Blanketeers - living blue dots on Magellan's blanket.
  • Batly (performed by Jim Kroupa) – An egotistical clumsy blue bat who wears glasses due to being near-sighted. Despite being different in every way, he and Magellan are good friends. His flying usually ends with a crash landing prompting him to say "I meant to do that." Batly spends most of his time in the belfry and has a large bug collection. In a 2016 Reddit AMA, Stine said that Batly's face was modeled after his own son, Matt.
    • Webster (performed by Noel MacNeal) – Batly's pet spider.
    • Fred - Batly's lightning bug whom he sleeps with.
  • Bogge and Quagmire (performed by Brian Muehl and Pam Arciero) – The Moat Twins are siblings who spend most of their time swimming in the castle moat, eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and playing in the basement. Bogge is orange while Quagmire is pink. They tend to argue with each other, but work together when it comes to causing trouble. Bogge and Quagmire constantly try to steal Magellan's peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, but never succeed.
  • Mr. Knack (performed by Brian Muehl) – The castle's handyman and tinkerer. He uses many unconventional methods for fixing things around the castle. He also loves to barter when he sells some of his inventions that he has made from his pushcart. Mr. Knack always gets some postcards which he reads to the viewers.
  • Sir Klank (performed by Jim Kroupa) – A blue mouse with a long gray beard who resides in a suit of armor.
  • Kate (performed by Lynn Hippen) – A pink mouse who frequently reports on what happens in the castle.
  • Emma (performed by Pam Arciero) – An orange mouse who loves to eat.
  • Fishtones – A trio of singing fish in the form of a stone fountain who spray water when they're not singing.
  • The Giant (performed by Jim Kroupa) – A friendly full-bodied giant with a long nose who owns the wind-up castle music box where the show takes place.

Puppeteers

Main

  • Pam Arciero as Quagmire, Emma
  • Cheryl Blaylock as Eureeka
  • Lynn Hippen as Cooey, Kate
  • Jim Kroupa as Batley, Sir Klank, Giant
  • Noel MacNeal as Magellan, Webster
  • Brian Muehl as Bogge, Mr. Knack

Additional

  • Rob Gardner
  • John Kennedy
  • Joey Mazzarino

Production

Eureeka's Castle's ending credits state the show comes from an original concept by Debby Beece and Judy Katschke. In 1988, development of the show began by staff members at Nickelodeon and animator Eli Noyes and his partner Kit Laybourne, whose wife Geraldine Laybourne was the Head of Programming for Nickelodeon."Jovial Bob Stine", best known for his children's horror novels written under the pen name R. L. Stine, was hired as the head writer to develop the concept, characters and episode scripts. The puppet design and construction for the characters were done at 3/Design Studio where the puppets were built by Jim Kroupa, John Orberg, Kip Rathke and Matt Stoddart.

Nickelodeon ordered 65 episodes of Eureeka's Castle, and Beece called it "the most ambitious program for preschoolers since the premiere of Sesame Street 20 years ago". The first episode of Eureeka's Castle premiered during Nickelodeon's Special Delivery block on August 27, 1989, before debuting on Nick Jr. on September 4. In May 1990, Eureeka's Castle was renewed for a 35-episode second season (later reduced to 22 episodes).

From 1990 to 1991, Nickelodeon created 52 half-hour episodes of Eureeka's Castle entirely out of clips from the first two seasons for their participation in the Cable in the Classroom service. The half-hour episodes were designed for international distribution and later replaced the original hour-long episodes in reruns starting in 1994. Production on Eureeka's Castle ended in 1991; some of the show's crew later worked on Gullah Gullah Island.

Episodes

Series overview

Season Episodes Originally aired
First aired Last aired
1 65 September 4, 1989 December 1, 1989
2 22 September 2, 1991 Fall 1991
3 52 July 1990 September 4, 1991
Specials 3 November 27, 1990 November 10, 1991

Season 1 (1989)

No. in
series
No. in
season
Title Original air date
TBA TBA TBA ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ September 4, 1989 (1989-09-04) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
TBA TBA TBA ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ December 1, 1989 (1989-12-01) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ

Season 2 (1990)

No. in
series
No. in
season
Title Original air date
TBA TBA TBA ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ 1990 (1990) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
TBA TBA TBA ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ 1990 (1990) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ

Season 3 (1991)

No. in
series
No. in
season
Title Original air date
TBA TBA TBA ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ 1991 (1991) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
TBA TBA "Animals" ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ 1991 (1991) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
TBA TBA "Sunny Day" ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ 1991 (1991) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
TBA TBA "Bedtime" ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ 1991 (1991) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
TBA TBA "Body Language" ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ 1991 (1991) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
TBA TBA TBA ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ 1991 (1991) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ

Specials (1990–1991)

No. in
series
No. in
season
Title Original air date
1 1 "Christmas at Eureeka's Castle" ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ November 27, 1990 (1990-11-27) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
2 2 "It Came From Beneath the Bed or Nightmare on Magellan Street" ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ October 19, 1991 (1991-10-19) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ
3 3 "Don't Touch That Box" ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ ʁ November 10, 1991 (1991-11-10) ʁ ʁ ʁ
ʁ

Broadcast

The series premiered on September 4, 1989 on Nick Jr. Reruns of the show continued airing on Nick Jr. until September 6, 1996, and again from November 16, 1998, to February 5, 1999, and on Noggin from 1999 to 2002.

Home video

Two Eureeka's Castle direct-to-video specials ("Sing Along With Eureeka" and "Wide Awake at Eureeka's Castle", both produced in 1990) and the "Christmas at Eureeka's Castle" special were released by Sony Wonder in 1995 and Paramount Home Video in 1997. To date, the series has not been released on DVD, Blu-ray or streaming video.

Awards

In 1990, Eureeka's Castle won an Ace Award for best children's program.

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