Dexter's Laboratory (abbreviated Dexter's Lab) is an animated series American, created by Genndy Tartakovsky, produced by Cartoon Network Studios and originally aired in the United States on the television channel Cartoon Network between April 28, 1996 and the November 20, 2003. The series features a gifted boy named Dexter, creator and keeper of a secret laboratory made up of a very large number of inventions. He is constantly harassed by his big sister Dee Dee who always manages to access his laboratory, as well as by his neighbor and sworn enemy Mandark. The first two seasons of the series consist of three episodic parts: the first being Dexter's Laboratory, which is based on the universe of young prodigy and scientist Dexter, the second Momo the monkey, featuring the exploits of the superhero monkey and Dexter's guinea pig, and the third Les Frères Justice, based on a trio of superheroes renters of the same apartment.
Tartakovsky, creator and designer of the series, makes his very first short film, inspired by a project he made during his studies at CalArts, later aired on the innovative show Hanna-Barbera studios originally entitled What a Cartoon!. Three short films are made between 1995 and 1996, and, following their great success and an ever-growing audience, a first season of thirteen episodes is produced. Since 1999, the series has a total of 52 episodes and an animated TV movie. Subsequently, the channel relaunches the program in 2001, this time done by a different production team, the series ends in 2003.
The animated series quickly becomes one of the most popular original series of the Cartoon Network channel. It is positively welcomed by all critics, editors, and the general audience. During its broadcast, the series is offered for four Primetime Emmy Awards, four Golden Reel Awards, and nine Annie Awards, and three Annie Awards. The series is also notable for launching the career of cartoonists such as Craig McCracken (The Great Nanas, Foster, the House of Imaginary Friends and Wander), Seth MacFarlane (The Griffin, American Dad! and The Cleveland Show), Butch Hartman (My Godparents Are Magic, Danny Ghost and TUFF Puppy), and Rob Renzetti (Jenny Robot). Several media and products were inspired from the series, creating a franchise, including a series of comic books, DVDs and video tapes, music albums, toys, action figures, and video games, among others.
The series focuses on Dexter, a ten-year-old gifted, gifted red-haired boy wearing glasses and a white lab coat, creator and keeper of a secret lab equipped with advanced and sophisticated technology, whose main entry is located behind the library of his room. Access to this lab is only ordered using voice passwords or a few manipulations to perform (such as pulling a specific book). Dexter is in constant conflict with his older sister, Dee Dee, a blonde girl dressed as a ballet dancer, who arrives in a mysterious way to always access his laboratory despite Dexter's attempts to prevent it. Usually, Dee Dee, once inside the lab, has fun destroying her little brother's creations like pressing a self-destruct button. In spite of her rather simple mind, Dee Dee comes from time to time to think more rationally than Dexter, or sometimes even gives her advice. Dee Dee occasionally played with two other girls her age, Lee Lee and Mee Mee, and also has an imaginary friend named Koosalagoopagoop or simply Koosy a merry yellow monster anthropomorphic.
Dexter lives in a family American banal and stereotypical, in which the father held the office worker role, and the mother housewife. Dexter, despite his oversized intelligence, fails most of the time in what he undertakes. Nevertheless, he succeeds in keeping his laboratory secret in the eyes of his parents, who, in a manner that is often comical and recurrent, fail to notice or suspect the existence of his laboratory. In the original version of the series, and although his family is American, Dexter speaks with a Russian accent, this accent was added by the creator of the series Genndy Tartakovsky, originally a Russian immigrant, because the character is inspired by his childhood. Moreover, from time to time, Dexter confronts his neighbor and sworn enemy, Susan "Mandark" Astronomonov, a young genius who, like Dexter, has a secret laboratory.
Dexter's Laboratory is originally composed of three episodic segments (or independent episodes) of seven minutes each, two of which are recurrent in the first two seasons. The main segment depicts the universe and the plot of Dexter and his family. The other two segments, occasionally aired, entitled Momo the Monkey and The Brothers Justice, appear during the first half and second half of the first season, respectively. Characters from Momo the Monkey or the Dexter Lab appear from time to time in The Brothers Justice and vice versa. From time to time, a mini-segment originally titled The Puppet Pals was aired with two puppets presumably parodies characters Ernest and Bart of the series 1 Sesame Street.
Momo the Monkey (original version: Dial M for Monkey) focuses on the domestic animal and laboratory monkey, Momo, which Dexter thinks is just an ordinary monkey. However, Momo secretly possesses superpowers and the ability to fight evil. Momo is usually accompanied by a teammate and a superhero team led by a general commander. Momo's true identity is revealed to Dexter in the episode The Final Battle, but Dexter's memory is subsequently erased. Momo the monkey was created by Genndy Tartakovsky, Craig McCracken and Paul Rudish.
The Justice Brothers (The Justice Friends) highlight the misadventures of a trio of superheroes - Captain USA (parodying character Captain America and Superman), Valhallen (character parodying Thor and Eddie Van Halen) and Krunk (character parodying the Incredible Hulk) - living together in the same apartment. This segment is presented as a sitcom, with laughter recorded. Genndy Tartakovsky, in an interview with IGN explains to be inspired by the Marvel Comics, and his disappointment about what became of The Justice Brothers noting that "the series could have been funny, and personality of the characters more substantial".
The series is initially inspired by a drawing by the creator Genndy Tartakovsky depicting a tall slim girl dressed as a ballet dancer. Genndy later decided to accompany this drawing with a graphically opposed, small and physically square character, named Dexter, who was inspired by his older brother, Alex. The animation of Dexter's The Laboratory is influenced by the short film originally entitled The Dover Boys at Pimento University of the Merrie Melodies series. However, the series itself is staged from a cinematographic point of view by enlarged image, rather than by close-up image, to leave space and depth in the gags and actions. Tartakovsky was also inspired by Warner Bros.'s animated short films. Hanna-Barbera, UPA, and Japanese animation. He also explains that the character of Dexter was drawn as simply as possible - square, small, surrounded by a thick black outline, and with relatively little physical detail. Knowing that he created this character for televised continuity, he intentionally limited the design of the characters to a certain level, at first with the nose and mouth, then with a simple animation style similar to that of Hanna-Barbera.
Dexter's Lab, and other animated series such as Cléo and Chico, Johnny Bravo, Supers Nanas, and Courage, the Cowardly Dog, are now part of a series of innovative "character-centric" series on Cartoon Network. After enrolling at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) in 1990 to study animation, Tartakovsky directed, animated and produced two pilot episodes that will become the first bases of the. The first pilot episode, originally titled Dexter's Lab is featured on What a Cartoon!, at the time named World Premiere Toons, on February 26, 1995. In this program, the viewers were to vote for the short films they wanted to see continuity, during this period, the first short film chosen is Dexter's Laboratory, which will be extended in thirteen episodes from August 1995. The series airs for the first time in half an hour in 1996, accompanied by an advertising campaign carried out by TNT, TBS and Cartoon Network. Once the first season is over, the doubler Dee Dee's official and Tartakovsky's comrade since high school, Allison Moore, leaves the show because she is disinterested in dubbing, as a result, dubbing is entrusted to Kathryn Cressida. Christine Cavanaugh, official doubler of Dexter, withdrawn from the dubbing world, meanwhile, gives way to Candi Milo.
Dexter's Lab completed its broadcast in 1998 after two seasons, with a second season of 39 episodes, a notable record for Cartoon Network Studios, and the final episode, The Final Battle, takes up a full 25 minutes of airtime. In 1999, Tartakovsky got involved for the very last time in the series, with the production of the animated television movie Dexter's Laboratory: Ego Trip. The TV movie, quite well received by all the critics and fans, follows Dexter in his quest to discover his future successes, and his meeting with his "doubles du futur". Christine Cavanaugh Wins Annie Award for the original dubbing of Dexter in the category "female dubbing in an animated series". The series was revived in 2001 with new seasons produced by a different production team, without the presence of Tartakovsky that is, at the same time, busy with the realization of Samurai Jack and Star Wars: Clone Wars. In the third season, Chris Savino replaces Tartakovsky in the production, and acquires, as of the fourth season, more control as the budget of the series. The other members of the former production team, MacFarlane and Hartman, left Time Warner to realize The Griffin and My Godparents are magical, respectively. These two new seasons present a different graphic design, some changes in the script and consistency, in addition to different sound effects. Finally, the entire production team consisted of cartoonists Genndy Tartakovsky, Rumen Petkov, Craig McCracken, Seth MacFarlane, Butch Hartman, Rob Renzetti, Paul Rudish, John McIntyre and Chris Savino.
Dexter's Laboratory Series is originally released from April 28, 1996 at November 20, 2003on the Cartoon Network television channel in the United States. It has a total of 4 seasons composed of 78 episodes. Two pilot episodes were made specifically for the World Premiere Toons project aired between 1995 and 1996 on the channel, then selected for continuity that was to run until 1999, an animated TV movie called Ego Trip will follow in 1999, and the series will be temporarily stopped. The latter is relaunched again in 2001, with 26 episodes, and ends in 2003. A promotional episode entitled The goose bumps is broadcast in the cinema before the start of Supers Nanas, the film in 2002, and then on television in the fourth season of the series. The November 16, 2001, Cartoon Network launches a televised marathon noon titled Dexter Goes Global in 96 countries and in 12 different languages. The marathon had episodes of Dexter's Laboratory selected by viewers with a few episodes of the third season. The January 16, 2006in the United States, the series is rebroadcast on Cartoon Network's sister channel, Boomerang, the occasion is marked by a 12-hour marathon celebrating Martin Luther King Day. The March 30, 2012, the series is rebroadcast again in a North American show called Cartoon Planet.
The series has also been adapted and broadcast internationally, including French-speaking countries. In France, the series was broadcast on September 5, 1999on France 3 in the show La Bande à Dexter presented by Les Minikeums, and on Cartoon Network from 1999 to 2009 which will meanwhile launch a morning television show entitled Les Matins de Dexter. The series is rebroadcast from 2010 to 2012 on Gulli, in 2012 on France 3 in Bunny Tonic and since 2010 on Boing. In Canada, the series was broadcast on Télétoon around 1998, then rebroadcast on July 4, 2012to the creation of the Canadian version of Cartoon Network.
In the United States, two controversial episodes, integral parts of the series, have been banned from broadcasting. The first episode, titled Barbequor of the Momo the Monkey segment, was deleted by Cartoon Network after its first broadcast. The episode showed a character named Silver Trophy, a parody of the Silver Surfer perceived by Cartoon Network as a homosexual stereotype, despite its US censorship Barbequor was dubbed into French. The second episode, originally entitled Rude Removal of the Dexter Lab segment was not broadcast on the channel. The episode featured two clones of Dexter and Dee Dee, from the "anti-insult machine" invented by Dexter who was originally supposed to censor all their insults. This episode has only been shown at a few animation festivals, but has never been shown on the channel because of the large number of insults, even censored, recorded. Linda Simensky, this future period VP of programming Cartoon Network explains that "the episode is funny, but better be aired overnight". Fred Seibert, President of Hanna-Barbera Cartoons from 1992 to 1996, confirms the existence of this episode. In 2012, the channel Adult Swim asks its fans on Twitter if the episode should be broadcast on the channel, the fans having massively answered yes. The episode finally aired on the video sharing site YouTube and on the official website of Adult Swim 22 January 2013.
- Christine Cavanaugh: Dexter (seasons 1-2)
- Candi Milo: Dexter (seasons 3-4)
- Allison Moore: Dee Dee (seasons 1 and 3)
- Kathryn Cressida: Dee Dee (seasons 2 and 4)
- Kath Soucie: Mom
- Jeff Bennett: Dad
- Eddie Deezen: Mandark
- Rob Paulsen: Captain USA
- Tom Kenny: Valhallen
- Frank Welker: Krunk
Sources: IMDb, TV, com, Critical sense
- Marc Saez: Dexter
- Dorothée Pousséo: Dee Dee
- Véronique Picciotto: Mom
- Laurent Morteau: Dad
- Natacha Gerritsen: Mandark
- Roland Timsit: Captain USA
- Christophe Lemoine: Valhallen
- Jean-François Aupied: Hank Action
- Achille Orsoni: Orgon Grindor
- Christian Pélissier: Additional Voices
Sources: Critical sense
The Dexter Lab series has gained popularity since its first broadcast on the Cartoon Network television channel, so many of its derivative products have been commercialized in many forms, initially in the North American market. These media include, among many others, a series of comic books, DVDs and video tapes, music albums, video games, toys, and promotional figures offered in fast-food restaurants such as Subway and Dairy Queen. In some celebrities and high places, The Laboratory Dexter is a positively welcomed series. Mike Lazzo, at this time future programmer of the channel, confides that this series was his favorite among the 48 others proposed, commenting that "the rivalry brother and sister and always so amusing". The president of Cartoon Network, Betty Cohen also says that this is one of his favorite series. The rapper Coolio, also a fan of the series, says he enjoyed composing the music in the series, and explains: "I watch a lot of cartoons with my kids. I watch more cartoons than movies".
VHS and DVD
Initially, several video cassettes (VHS) are marketed in Europe and North America. The first volume containing the first twelve episodes is published on March 27, 2000 in Europe, followed by another, originally titled Greatest Adventures containing eight episodes is marketed on July 3, 2001. The TV movie Ego Trip, meanwhile, is marketed on November 7, 2000 in Europe, and July 23, 2001 in North America. Later, Warner Bros. explains in an interview in 2006 his "Conversation with Cartoon Network" about DVD adaptations for many animation series in the channel, including The Dexter Lab. The first season is distributed on DVD in South America and Australia on February 13, 2008, and on October 12, 2010 in Europe by Warner Home Video. It is the third official marketing a series Cartoon Cartoons on DVD, as the Cartoon Network Hall of Fame. With time, the canceled episode of broadcast titled Barbequor of the segment Momo the monkey, is replaced by History of Dog, an episode of the second season. The complete series, with the exception of the Ego Trip movie and the controversial Rude Removal episode, is available to Internet users on the iTunes sales site in 2010.
Some episodes are also presented in videotapes and DVDs other than those in the main series. The cassette The Powerpuff Girls: Twisted Sister, published April 3, 2001 in Europe, this episode History Dog. The Powerpuff Girls: Twas the Fight Before Christmas, published on October 7, 2003 in Europe and November 8, 2005 in South America and Oceania, presents the Dexter episode against Santa Claus, the DVD Scooby-Doo and the Toon Tour of Mysteries, published in June 2004 in Europe, presents the episodes Mystery under the branches, The Cookies bring bad luck and Compromising Photos, the Halloween Cartoon Network DVD: 9 Cartoon Capers, published on August 10, 2004 in Europe, presents the episode The Class Photo, the Cartoon Network Christmas DVD: Yuletide Follies, published on October 5, 2004 in Europe, presents the episode Mysteries and Snowballs, the DVD Cartoon Network Halloween 2: Grossest Halloween Ever, published on August 5, 2005 in Europe, presents the episode The House Dee Dee, to finish, the DVD Cartoon Network Christmas: Christmas Rocks, published October 4, 2005 in Europe and October 18, 2010 in South America and Oceania, presents the episode Dexter against Santa Claus.
Several musical media inspired by the series have been commercialized including two albums, the first entitled Dexter's Laboratory: The Musical Time Machine and the second Dexter's Laboratory: The Hip-Hop Experiment, three music videos of hip-hop, and a fourth music video anime style with the group They Might Be Giants and their song Dee Dee and Dexter. Three music from Dexter's Lab have been included in three Cartoon Network music compilations entitled Cartoon Medley. In the original version of the series, the music was composed by Thomas Chase, in the French version, the end credits are sung by Michel Barouille.
Six video games inspired by the series have also been released including: Dexter's Laboratory: Robot Rampage on Game Boy Color Dexter's Laboratory: Chess Challenge on Gameboy Advance, Dexter's Laboratory: Deesaster Strikes!, also on Game Boy Advance, Dexter's Laboratory: Mandark Lab on PlayStation, Dexter's Laboratory: Science Is Not Fair on PC, and Dexter's Laboratory: Security Alert! application on mobile phone. Dexter, Mandark, Dee Dee, the central unit of Dexter, and Captain USA, as well as the environment and inventions of the series have been represented in the MMORPG Fusion Fall. Many characters in the series are also included in the Cartoon Network Racing and Cartoon Network video games: The Shock of the Heroes.
DC Comics managed to market 34 comic books inspired by the series between 1999 and 2003. In February 2013, IDW Publishing announced a partnership with Cartoon Network for the production of comics inspired by the original series of the channel. The Dexter Lab is one of the first titles announced for a first publication.
In 1997 and 1999, the American food chains Wendy's and Subway, respectively, promote collectible toys inspired by the Dexter Lab included in their children's menu. The Subway promotion, which ran from August 23rd to October 3rd, awarded the winners of the DVD draw of the series and a computer. The toy company Trendmasters sells figurines and board games inspired by the series in 2001. Also, six promotional figures are available on the Dairy Queen Kids Menu in May 2001. In 2003, Burger King sponsored series-inspired toys in their children's menu, and also promoted online games, Cartoon Orbit codes, and new episodes of the series.
Criticism and writing
Since its launch, Dexter's Lab is one of the most acclaimed Cartoon Network original series, with a very strong audience between 1996 and 1997. In 1996, the series was voted "Best Cartoon of the Year" by viewers. Internationally, the series received a special mention for his script to the animation festival Cartoons on the Bay in Italy. As early as 1998, the character of Dexter became popular enough to appear with other iconic characters at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, and in the movie Babe, the pig became a shepherd, in which Christine Cavanaugh takes over the original dubbing. The series also occupies 20% of the audience on Cartoon Network during the summer of 1999. On July 7, 2000, the series, served in 2 million homes, reached a high audience in 3.1% of households, 7.8% of viewers aged 2 to 11, and 8.4% of older viewers between 6 and 11 years. On July 31, 2001, it reached its peak audience in 2.9% of households and the best served (in 2 166 000 households) by the Cartoon Network that same year, moreover, it is the original Cartoon Network series with a larger audience in 2002.
The Dexter Laboratory is also positively welcomed by all critics and editors. Deirdre Sheppard of Common Sense Media, however, credits the series with two out of five stars, commenting that "there is a lot of violence in this cartoon. In one episode, for example, Dexter is his friends playing an interactive role-playing game with Robin Hood style characters and mages fighting dragons using swords and arrows. As if that was not enough, at some point in the episode, the dragon is tied up and becomes in a few seconds a piñata that is sliced off the head with candies coming out. The frame is well designed." In 2009, the series is ranked 72 best animated series by IGN, followed by a commentary: "targeted and immediately accessible to children, Dexter Laboratory is part of a new generation of animated series that plays two levels, funny for both children and adults. In the top 10 of 2012 established by Entertainment Weekly, the series is ranked in the fourth place of the favorite series Cartoon Network".
Dexter's Laboratory Series has been rewarded many times. In 1995, she was awarded the Annie Awards in the category "Best Screenplay for an animated short film" for the pilot episode The Dexter Laboratory at Hanna-Barbera Studios. In 1997, she was again rewarded with an Annie this time in the category "Best frame of a televised production" for the episode My kingdom for a beard involving Jason Butler Rote and Paul Rudish. In 2000, she won another Annie this time in the category "Best Actress dubbing" for actress Christine Cavanaugh in the TV movie Ego Trip.
The series has also been named many times. In 1995, Genndy Tartakovsky was nominated for an Annie in the category "Best Storyboard in the Field of Animation". The same year, the series is named to the Primetime Emmy Awards in the category "Best Animation Program" for the pilot episode Dexter's Lab involving Buzz Potamkin, Genndy Tartakovsky and Larry Huber. The following year, in 1996, she was named to the Primetime Emmys in the category "Best Animation Program" for the pilot episode The Big Sister involving Larry Huber, Genndy Tartakovsky, Craig McCracken and Paul Rudish. In 1997, she was named to the Annie Awards in four different categories: "Best Animation Program" (Hanna-Barbera), "Best Music for a Television Production" (Thomas Chase and Steve Rucker), "Best Television Series" (Genndy Tartakovsky for the episode Arm wrestling) and "Best dubbing actress" (Christine Cavanaugh). The same year, she was named to the Primetime Emmys in the category "Best Animation Program" for the episodes Superhero Seeking Assistant, The Brothers Justice, The Master of the Virtual involving Sherry Gunther, Larry Huber, Craig McCracken, Genndy Tartakovsky and Jason Butler. In 1998, she was named to the Annie Awards in the categories "Best Animation Program" (Hanna-Barbera), "Best Actress dubbing" (Christine Cavanaugh), and "Best Music for an Animation Series" (David Smith, Thomas Chase, and Steve Rucker for the episode Melomania). She was appointed the same year the Golden Reel Awards 1998 in the category "Best Sound Editing for an animation series - Music". Again in 1998, she was appointed to the Primetime Emmys 1998 in the category "Best Animated Program" for episodes Dyno-Mite and melomania involving Davis Doi, Genndy Tartakovsky, Jason Butler Rote and Michael Ryan.
In 2000, the series is named in the category "Best animation program broadcast in primetime or at night". In 2002, she was nominated at the 2002 Golden Reel Awards in the category "Best Sound Editing for an Animated Series - Music" for episodes Télépathe who thought she was taking, Une histoire de Quoin Quoin, and MaMandark, involving Roy Braverman and William Griggs. Finally, in 2004, she was again named to the Golden Reel Awards in the category "Best Sound Editing for an Animated Series - Music" for the Dexter Fans episode involving Brian F. Mars and Roy Braverman).