The transforming marbles are back in Bakugan Battle Planet. The revamp of the once hugely successful kids anime property starts this Sunday, December 23rd on Cartoon Network in the United States at 7PM. New episodes of the series will then air throughout the entire week at 7AM before moving to its regular weekly time slot of 7AM on Saturdays beginning January 5th. The first two episodes are now available to watch through the channel’s website and app (U.S.-only), with eight more expected to drop on V.O.D. platforms on the 24th.
Internationally, the new series will launch in early 2019 on Cartoon Network in Europe, Middle East, Africa, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. Canada will receive Bakugan Battle Planet on Teletoon starting December 31st at 3PM.
When Bakugan began emerging from the earth’s crust in a mysterious worldwide “awakening,” Dan and his friends find themselves at the epicenter of a new age. Dan and Company quickly learn that they must grow into more than just suburban kids looking for quick fame in the post-Bakugan era. They must learn how to work with their Bakugan and deploy them in battle in order to survive the seemingly endless forces out to control, enslave or just plain destroy the mysterious race of alien creatures. Dan and his friends will evolve into bona fide heroes by protecting their Bakugan, the Earth and ultimately the incredible secret hidden beneath our feet: Our planet has merged with another, living planet… Vestroia!
Bakugan Battle Planet is the battleground where good vs. evil, peace vs. war, and hope vs. fear is decided. Powerful, mysterious forces wage ruthless campaigns to defeat or enslave the other. The stakes are high, and the fate of the world hangs in the balance.
The new 100-episode x 11-minute series is produced by Spin Master Entertainment, Nelvana Limited and TMS Entertainment with writing duties handled by Man of Action. Bakugan Battle Planet stars Jonah Wineberg as Dan Kouzo, Margarita Valderrama as Lia Venegas, Deven Mack as Wynton Styles, Ticoon Kim as Shun Kazami, and Julius Cho as the masked Magnus. Jason Deline, who voiced the character in the original series, returns as Drago.
Cartoon Network Enterprises will represent the show’s licensing program in all territories except Asia. Takara Tomy is handling Bakugan Battle Planet’s release in Asian markets, while TMS Entertainment is responsible for the distribution of the toys, animated series and related licensing program.
In preparation for the relaunch, Spin Master has revamped the brand’s official website. It features character bios, toy info and a bunch of additional information. Much of this is mirrored in the Bakugan Fan Hub app for Android and iOS devices, which also adds quizes and a virtual version of the table top game.
The toys are streetdated for January 1st. This time around, Spin Master has reinvented the game with appeal to a wide range of skill levels. From enhanced technology that transforms each of the marble-like balls into multiple collectible characters when rolled over a magnetic card, to lifelike details on each of the 100 characters, fans can bring the Bakugan characters they see on screen to life.
Spin Master explains the first wave of products as:
- Bakugan challenges players to become the ultimate Bakugan Master. Brawlers can face off against friends with their Bakugan by rolling it across the metal BakuCores and seeing it transform with pop-open Baku-Action. Brawlers can add new Bakugan to their army and storm the Battle Arena to victory. Players can add over 100 Bakugan from Season One to their collection to build a Bakugan team to battle with friends.
- Bakugan Ultra give you the power to make the fierce Bakugan creatures perform even more epic transformations. By rolling them across the metal BakuCores, these deluxe Bakugan will leap into battle and pick up a BakuCore revealing its hidden power.
- Bakugan Starter Pack 3-Pack includes two epic Bakugan, one mighty Bakugan Ultra, six powerful BakuCores, collectible character cards and ability cards – everything you need to get the battle started.
To kick the game off, Spin Master flew a small number of fans to an invitational tournament last weekend. The company will be hosting Bakugan organized play throughout 2019, granting fans the ability to become the Ultimate BakuMaster! Locations include:
- March 14 – 17, 2019: Emerald City ComiCon in Seattle, Washington
- May 23 – 26, 2019: MomoCon in Atlanta, Georgia
- July 3 – 7, 2019: Anime Expo in Los Angeles, California
“The original Bakugan captured the hearts and minds or millions of children around the world,” said Ronnen Harary, Co-Founder, Chairman and Co-CEO of Spin Master. “We’ve reimagined the entire franchise, carefully maintaining the essence of what enchanted kids ten years ago, with modern entertainment, new toy technology and heightened strategic play,” said Ronnen Harary, Co-Founder, Chairman and Co-CEO of Spin Master. “As a company that pushes the boundaries of innovation, we’ve designed the expanded Bakugan line with exciting features that will inspire an entirely new generation of children to watch, collect and battle.”
The original Bakugan: Battle Brawlers anime launched in 2007 on TV Tokyo in Japan and Teletoon in Canada, before rolling out internationally in 2008. An immediate hit upon its global debut, the series ran for four seasons, encompassing 189 half-hour episodes before concluding in 2012. The original generation of the property was also a Canada-Japan co-production, between Spin Master, Nelvana, TMS Entertainment, Sega Toys and Japan-Vistec. The Japan-only CG-animated spinoff series Baku Tech! Bakugan ran in 2012/2013.
In the buildup to Bakugan’s reintroduction, Spin Master has launched lawsuits against competing toy brands it views as violating its patents. This includes Alpha Group’s Screechers Wild and Sono Kong/Mattel’s Mecard properties.
All times listed in eastern.