Ned's Newt facts for kids
Quick facts for kidsNed's Newt
|Voices of||See voice cast below|
|Country of origin||Canada
|No. of seasons||3|
|No. of episodes||39 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||22 min (per episode)|
|Original release||October 17, 1997– December 31, 1999|
Ned's Newt is a Canadian/German animated series created by Andy Knight (who also made Get Ed for Jetix) and Mike Burgess and is co-produced by Nelvana and TMO Film GmbH in association with Studio B Productions. The series premiered on October 17, 1997 and ended on December 31, 1999.
The series begins with 9-year-old Ned Flemkin finally scraping up enough money to buy a pet. However, upon reaching the pet store, the only thing he can afford is a newt. Ned names his new pet "Newton," but quickly tires it since Newton lies on the rock in his bowl. Complaining to the pet store owner that his new pet is not very active, the owner gives Ned a can of "Zippo for Newt" pet food but warns Ned not to give his pet too much. Ned feeds Newton a little, but Newton does nothing. Ned leaves the can beside Newton's bowl and goes to bed.
That night, Newton crawls from his bowl and gulps down several mouthfuls of Zippo. Thus, the "eats too much" warning comes true: Newton grows 6 feet tall, can talk (voiced by Harland Williams), and has the power to shapeshift. After Ned realizes this, he and Newton become the best of friends, but unfortunately, the effects of Zippo do not last forever. Newton often gets Ned into trouble, at which point the Zippo dissolves off. Newton shifts back to his smaller form, leaving Ned alone to convey the wrath of his adults.
The series recounts the misadventures of Ned attempting to live life normally while trying to keep Newton from being discovered.
List of Ned's Newt episodes
Plot and themes
Each episode makes a habit of creating outrageous plots out of mundane tasks and settings. For example, after a fun weekend of playing, Ned exclaims he cannot wait for the next, but Newton suggests that they can build a time machine to relive the weekend. The idea soon leads to them accidentally being sent to the age of dinosaurs and altering the future. In another episode, to raise money for charity, Ned's friend Doogle digs a hole and stumbles across a race of subterranean trolls secretly planning domination of the world's "metropolises-es."
Ned takes Newton everywhere and makes sure to keep some Zippo food with him at all times, just in case Newton turns back into a normal newt. Newton's powers almost always make things worse (mostly due to his poor understanding of society). Thus, when Ned explains that he's made a terrible mistake (such as giving 3.5 million dollars to some passersby), Newton and Ned must work together to put things right. And although they usually succeed in doing so, Newton invariably changes back to newt form just in time to avoid being seen and Ned to get into trouble.
The series made extensive references to famous faces and popular culture at the time, relying heavily on Harland Williams's experience as a comedian and impressionist. Newton shifts into "newt-versions" of many celebrities in each episode, such as Arnold Schwarzenegger, Humphrey Bogart and Clark Gable for comic effect. Newton also frequently brakes the fourth wall, especially in season three, even going so far as to comment upon how poorly drawn his belly-button was at one point or whether newts should have belly-buttons at all.
For the final four episodes of season three, Harland Williams was replaced by Ron Pardo as the voice of Newton.
In the episode "Rear Bus Window," Newton proclaims his exact species name vittercensis, which is not a cataloged member of the genus.
- Harland Williams as Newton (episodes 1–35)
- Ron Pardo as Newton (episodes 36–39)
- Tracey Moore as Ned Flemkin
- Carolyn Scott as Sharon "Mom" Flemkin/Miss Bunn
- Peter Keleghan as Eric "Dad" Flemkin
- Tracy Ryan as Linda Bliss
- Colin O'Meara as Doogle/Mr. Bliss
- Jim Milington as The Usual Guy/Pet Shop Owner
- Created by: Mike Burgess, Andy Knight
- Executive Producers:
- Clive A. Smith
- Patrick Loubert
- Michael Hirsch
- Andy Knight
- Andrew Nicholls
- Darrell Vickers
- Peter Völkle
- Produced by: Vince Commisso, Patricia R. Burns
- Directed by: Rick Marshall
- Voice Director: Debra Toffan
- Casting: Karen Goora
- Art Director: Mike Ksunyoska
- Music by: Pure West
- Produced with the Canada Film = Tax Credit
In the United States, the program aired on Fox Kids starting on February 7, 1998 (initially scheduled for fall 1997) on Saturday mornings (later changed to weekday mornings on October 5, 1998) to January 1, 1999. However, only the first season aired on Fox Kids in the U.S. while the series was never rerurn for many years.
It wasn't until Qubo aired the series from March 28, 2016, to July 27, 2018, and again starting from March 30, 2020, to July 24, 2020.
Each VHS tape had two pairs of episodes. The first three VHS tapes, entitled "Home Alone with Newt", "Jurassic Joyride" and "Saturday Night Fervor" were released in the United States by Paramount Home Entertainment on March 23, 1999. The videos were duplicated in EP/SLP mode originally, so Paramount Home Video, the distributor of all three VHS tapes, changed the speed on future pressings of the first three tapes to SP mode. In Canada, the series was released on VHS by Telegenic Entertainment.
Ned's Newt Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.