I was going through a collection of video clips I had ripped from YouTube and ran across Brats of the Lost Nebula.
This puppet series is even more obscure than Interster from South Africa!
Just click each of those links to compare their respective Wikipedia entries to prove that.
Brats is a rare failure from The Henson Company.
Here is a promo video from The WB that I didn’t know existed until today:
That at least explained to me how the puppets operated. They were very mysterious in the clips I had.
Here is the series creator, Dan Clark:
There are also clips spread across two different Vimeo accounts. From the first, here’s a behind the scenes directing clip:
And at the second account, here’s a clip that goes behind the scenes with an in-progress puppet from Brats:
Here is an example of Team Smithereen:
As for why Brats of the Lost Nebula died, it’s what Stephen J. Cannell warned about.
Regarding why the show was killed so swiftly in the US: our numbers were low, but the WB’s numbers were low across the whole block at the time – they panicked. The 1st thing a channel does when the whole block is underperforming is cancel the shows they don’t own – this is so they can focus all their air time on fixing their owned and controlled assets.
Boldfaced emphasis added by me.
Cannell and every other once-independent television producer understood that when the FCC changed the rules of the game for program ownership, every single one of them would have to become serfs of the networks.
So that explains why Brats died. As for why there’s been no DVD release:
Brats is owned by JHC [Jim Henson Company, which is owned by Disney], but they deem it too expensive to release on DVD for a smorgasbord of biz reasons.
OK, so doing DVDs is a risk.
But why the hell isn’t the series up on Hulu?
Hulu has given us both Endgame and Spy. It could give us Brats of the Lost Nebula too. Why hasn’t anyone thought of that? Someone needs to get on it. And after that, maybe downloads via iTunes or Amazon.
This is still a series I’d like to see. It’s the one Gerry Anderson-like series — that I know of — that I haven’t yet.
Previously at Mike Cane’s Blog: