Friday, February 24, 2017

Flashback Friday: Defenders of Dino City

Today, I'm sharing the first part of the Defenders of Dino City cartoon.  The show centers on a lost city that was inhabited by educated dinosaurs and protected by the spirit of Bronn, a ghostly Brontosaurus. When a misguided archeologist discovers it and its time portal within, Bronn summons the Defenders to come protect it from falling in the wrong hands.  The Defenders are evolved reptiles and amphibians imbued with magical powers based on the elements.

I based the majority of this cartoon off Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and The Dinosaucers and a cartoon that doesn't fit in the Old School Evil time frame, Captain Planet. I really enjoyed Ted Turner's environmentally-friendly anti-pollution propaganda show, mainly because of its use of elemental control powers that the Planeteers' rings gave them.  I'm a sucker for Earth, Water, Air, and Fire (it's no wonder that the much later Avatar: The Last Airbender cartoon is one of my all-time favorite television shows) and I even tried writing some of my first fan-fiction about it, some wholly embarrassing stuff that had elementals fighting the Planeteers for control of their elements.  Anyway, I decided to blend a bit of that with the mutant antics of the Turtles and expanded it to include a couple other reptiles and amphibians.

The image above is a rough idea for the cartoon, but I'm not particularly happy with it.  While I like the dinosaur neck and stone tower image, the font doesn't work to well with it and I'm not sure of the colors I want to use.  Check out the first half of the production bible and let me know what colors you think would work best.  I'd be happy to hear any other advice on the show as well.  Thanks for visiting!

Defenders of Dino City Production Bible
                When an archeologist stumbles upon the ruins of Dino City during a dig, the Defenders are called up to stop him from pillaging the skeletons of its once mighty denizens.  Bronn, the spirit watching over the city, calls upon the descendants of the dinosaurs, today’s reptiles and amphibians, to protect their sacred relics.  The Defenders are evolved lizards and such from across the globe and are able to use magic to defend against Professor Rex’s dinosaur army, the Terrorsaurs.
                Professor Rex was able to use the few bones he escaped with to create the Terrorsaurs, an army of dinosaur/human hybrids.  He fights against the Defenders to find the true treasure of Dino City – a door to the past that would allow dinosaurs to invade our time.
General Series Concepts
                The cartoon’s resounding message is teaching children about worldly culture through the Defenders.  Each Defender is from a different home with its own culture and each should represent it to its fullest potential.  On a regular basis, the Defenders should be referencing their homes and teaching each other lessons about them. 
                Each Defender is tied to a certain element and has magic based on that.  Please limit the use of their power to creating bubbles around them – the figures planned will have snap-on “armor” made to resemble their element.  There is some leeway with what the magic can do though, as long as it is not too big in scope or two crazy. Throwing fireballs is okay; a giant water monster is not.
                The Terrorsaurs are all physical fighters – as such, they will not use any long-range weapon.  No guns, no missiles, nothing.  They each have a play feature that should be used as their signature attack.  They will be listed below in their character descriptions.
                The Defenders are all very spiritual creatures as well as magical and can use their magic to summon creatures from their past.  The snap-on “armor” of the toys will match the look of these creatures.  They are not all good friends, having just met each other, and will learn things about each other through each episode.  They will sometimes clash, but with the help of Bronn and Terry, will work through it.
Salimandro – A salamander from eastern Asia.  He wears robes like a monk.  He is the calm and wise leader of the group and meditates on plans of action – sometimes he learns things through his meditations, like seeing with a third eye.  His spirit animal is a dragon, his element is fire.
Chamelo – A chameleon from Japan.  She’s dressed in a Kimono.  She’s the friendliest of the group and acts as a mediator between Salimandro and Amphibios when they’re fighting.  She talks in haikus.  She can become invisible and is very sneaky.  Her spirit animal is a white winged dragon, her element is air.
Amphibios – A poison arrow frog from South America.  He doesn’t wear a lot besides a loincloth and some bands around his arms and legs.  He’s extremely angry about trespassers in his territory.  Quick to fight, even with his fellow Defenders.  He can breathe underwater indefinitely.  His spirit animal is a giant toad, his element if water.
Tortoso – A tortoise from North America.  He weathers leather leggings and wooden armor.  He’s slow, wise and speaks in riddles.  He’s the oldest of the group.  Amphibios gets really tired of how slow he speaks.  He is able to turn himself into stone.  His spirit animal is a giant turtle with a tree on its shell, his element is earth.
Bronn – The ghost of a Brontosaurus that watches over Dino City.  As a ghost, he cannot do anything himself, but he was the one who imbued them with their magic and evolved them.  He’s as big as the dinosaur is and acts as the alarm for any danger in Dino City.  He can see a little outside of the city, but cannot act on it.
Terry – The last remaining dinosaur, a pterodactyl that Bronn watches over.  He’s super excited to see things from outside the city and although Bronn tries to keep him from leaving the city, he sometimes sneaks out.  He says “Cree-cree” after everything, and wears goggles and a scarf.

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