Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Vortexx is cancelled; an era ends

At the end of September, CW's Vortexx Saturday morning block will be no more. The articles I've read suggest that this marks the end of "traditional" weekend children's programming blocks, which leads me to suspect that NBC is also doing away with its current package. All that says is that these two networks were the last holdouts, believing that they could still generate a reasonable audience opposite cable's Nickelodeon, Disney Channel, & Cartoon Network and their respective sister networks.

Litton Entertainment, which already programs ABC & CBS' Saturday blocks, the latter as of 2013, will add CW to their schedule, under the umbrella title, One Magnificent Morning, which will launch October 4. CW is giving Litton 5 hours to program, as opposed to 3 on CBS and ABC. All of the programming is meant to be conforming to the FCC's E/I mandates, but that's not what kids want these days, and it's driving more of them toward cable.

Vortexx will end after 2 seasons, and the shows currently packaged by Saban will, with some exceptions, simply disappear, never to return (i.e. Bolts & Blip). Maybe WWE knew what they were doing when they decided a year ago to discontinue Saturday Morning Slam. They might've seen the writing on the wall, although their current web series, Slam City, previously reviewed here, ain't exactly helping things along.

Reportedly, one of the programs on deck for CW is a juvenile version of National Geographic Channel's popular Dog Whisperer. Hmmmmmm. Kids like dogs. I'd say, retitle the show Pet Whisperer so they can cover a wider spectrum, but we'll find out for sure in the fall.

The problem with cable, however, especially with Nickelodeon, is they tend to do blocks of episodes of popular series, rather than diversify. It's time we got past the mythical "sound byte mentality" and prove that there's a greater diversity of programming out there that kids can appreciate.

Pretty soon, if Litton can't get the ratings on 3 networks, they may just toss in the towel, and the next thing you know, Saturdays will be filled with reruns of the same syndicated shows you see at night (i.e. Everybody Loves Raymond, Golden Girls), which is already happening on cable. You may just want to give your alarm clock a day off if that happens.

18 comments:

Steven Dolce said...

Two words: Not cool.

hobbyfan said...

I agree, but this was inevitable, as SatAM has been more corporately controlled over the last 2 decades.

magicdog said...

Saturday mornings as we knew them are pretty much dead - have been since cable and satellite channels like CN scooped up all the syndicated shows and became the main venue for new material. Perhaps it's better this way. Kids should be out and about on Saturday mornings, not in front of the boob tube!

Besides, who watches TV in real time these days? Streaming is where it's at now!

hobbyfan said...

Ironically, CN & Nickelodeon are at the forefront of programs getting kids out of the house and getting active. Go figure.

April Patterson said...

This is a shame--my 11-year-old just came across this news and he's devastated. Vortexx on Saturday mornings is something he looks forward to all week. Not everyone has cable.

Mark Watson said...

Pet Whisperer is an extension of National Geographic Channel's long-running Dog Whisperer in which Cesar Millan will experience brand new adventures with companion animals.

http://www.litton.tv

Rafael Castellanos said...

Sucks if u ask me replacing sat morning toons for this crap. Who watches this stuff. They should leave it as is

Cedric Lamar said...

Good lord what are we going to do?

Steven Dolce said...

I hope to god that the owner of Litton Entertainment gets shot in the face one day.

ahay191 said...

PLEASE DONT WATCH ONE MAGNIFICENT MORNING!!!! This is stupid I wait for Saturdays waiting for a break to watch awesome TV cartoons like bolts and blip, digimon, sonic x, yu-gi-oh, and many many more I litterly didn't go camping today just to watch these show take it from a kid who has been waking up since she was 4 to watch these cartoons every saturday morning. If I could I swear I would raid the this magnificent morning place and force them to put vortex and cw4kids back on and trust me I'm not going to watch this new crap they put on ever,so they just lost a fan IF YOUR WITH ME Please DON'T WATCH IT EITHER please send your responses to my twitter account ahay191 thank you and if you have a way to protest please start now.

RejectForever said...

Good post ahay191. Boycott the channel, maybe even start a petition. Nicktoons does have some ok stuff on Sunday mornings, which is when our CW Saturdays air here near Detroit. Hour of Digimon, 2 hours of TMNT, and an ep of Zexal in there. Watch it till they take it off as well...

RejectForever said...

Here is a petition. Nearing 120, we will need 1000s. Someone savvy w FB get this rolling please.

http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/boycott-litton-entertainment-and-the-fcc-to-bring-back-saturday-morning-cartoons.html

Elijah Perry said...

It already ended, and I'm fucking pissed. They may put an end to Saturday Morning Cartoon blocks, but they will NEVER ban cartoons in america. Don't blame the people. Blame the FCC. They were planning to do this. We're going to war. If we win, we'll probably get our saturday morning cartoons back, and no E/I programming.

Alex Avellaneda said...

This isn't fair! I'm 13 and I love every show on vortexx. I wake up early every Saturday morning just waiting for the shows to come on, but one morning I was so angry that I didn't see Sonic X, Dragon ball z kai, Yugioh or any other show! I really hope vortexx will come back in the future.

pharohwrite said...

Maybe they're planning on forcing kids outside these days but when theres nothing to do or it's storming you want to watch Saturday morning cartoons, I guess that's why I just download the shows I like to watch since they're no longer on the air. Fcc needs to leave the shows alone, we all watched them growing up and grew up just fine but the ones who are watching these new learning shows are becoming hyper active

hobbyfan said...

WOW! More than a year's worth of comments.....

@Steven Dolce: Making threats against the Litton suits ain't doing anyone any good. Period.

The broadcast networks are fighting an uphill, losing battle against their cable brethren and online services, and, as of this writing, NBC is the only network left with cartoons on Saturdays, repurposed from step-sister network Sprout mostly.

@Alex Avellaneda: It's a year later. How do you feel now? Trust me, the FCC had nothing to do with these changes, contrary to what Pharoahwrite and others might imply.

Nick Brady said...

They did that on porpose!

hobbyfan said...

It's a business decision, Nick. That's all it comes down to. Networks have to make money, and if Saturday morning children's programming isn't bringing in the dollars, well.....!