The Powerpuff Girls (or often referred to as The Powerpuff Girls 2016) is an American reboot animated television series based on Craig McCracken's Powerpuff Girls (1998). Cartoon Network announced the series in June 2014. In 2015, they announced that the new series would feature new voice actors for the main characters. The series premiered on April 4, 2016, in the United States, along with Latin America and Brazil with the same day, and April 25, 2016 in the United Kingdom. In Indonesia it is broadcast on Trans TV. It first aired on Boomerang on November 1, 2016 alongside its airings on Cartoon Network [1], replacing Baby Looney Tunes and Wabbit, and left the schedule on January 1, 2018, when it was replaced by Dexter's Laboratory, Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends, Codename: Kids Next Door, and The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy.


Production Edit

Cartoon Network announced on June 16, 2014, that they had revived The Powerpuff Girls in a new series, which was to be produced by Cartoon Network Studios. In their 2015 upfront on February 19, the network announced that Nick Jennings would be its executive producer.[2] Bob Boyle, who previously has produced Clarence, has created Disney XD's Yin Yang Yo! and Nickelodeon's Wow! Wow! Wubbzy! and also former producer and art director of the Butch Hartman's animated series The Fairly OddParents and Danny Phantom would also produce. Meanwhile, Craig McCracken, the creator of The Powerpuff Girls, would not work on the series. Amanda Leighton, Kristen Li and Natalie Palamides were announced as the new voice actors of the main characters, playing Blossom, Bubbles and Buttercup, respectively,[3] replacing the original voice actors Cathy Cavadini, Tara Strong and Elizabeth Daily.[3] However, Tom Kenny reprises his roles as the Mayor and narrator, while Tom Kane reprises his roles as Professor Utonium[4] and Him. In April 2016, Jennings revealed that the producers had considered bringing back the original voice actors for the new series, but decided that recasting the roles would infuse new energy.[4] After the network revealed multiple promotional images from the new series in June 2015, writers from news sites described the visual look as similar to the original series, despite the 15th anniversary special Dance Pantsed, which was broadcast on January 20, 2014, featuring a different art style rendered in 3D.[5] Meanwhile, Roger L. Jackson reprises as Mojo Jojo and Jennifer Hale reprises as Ms. Keane, but not as Princess Morbucks. On May 26, 2016, Natalie Palamides confirmed that the show has been renewed for a second season.[6] The reboot had a crossover with Teen Titans Go! that aired on June 30, 2016.

Reception Edit

The series was met with mixed reviews from fans and critics. Henry Solotaroff-Webber of The Badger Herald enjoyed the series, saying "Overall, this new rendition of a classic animated program is a triumph in my eyes. It recaptures much of what made the last show so important for kids to see while still thoroughly scratching a nostalgia itch for those looking to go back."[7] IGN gave the premiere episode "Man Up" an 8.0 out of 10, saying "While the new voice cast will take some getting used to, and the absence of Cathy Cavadini, Tara Strong and E.G. Daily is strongly felt, the show still manages to capture the essence of the Powerpuff Girls."[8]The Nerdist gave the first two episodes a 4.5 out of 5, saying "if you loved the original show, chances are you'll love these new episodes."[9] Screen Rants gave it a positive review, saying "Although the revival doesn't quite hit the mark on what made audiences fall in love with McCracken's original series, The Powerpuff Girls reboot is an excellent addition to the franchise." [10]

The Occidental Weekly lamented that the series "lacks the impeccable comedic timing and wit of the original" and called the voice acting "mediocre at best", while also criticizing the subpar writing.[11] Slate was critical of the show's "self-conscious" feminist overtones, and compared the show unfavorably to the original, particularly the second-season episode "The Powerpuff Girls' Best Rainy Day Adventure Ever".[12] Polygon criticized that the show lost what they considered made the original so special: "fighting seems like an afterthought, as if Cartoon Network wants to keep the Girls a safe distance from the fray", and that the show was a "step backward, not forward".[13] Jessica Swartz of Inverse said that new viewers might not know who the villains are or what their motivations are, as no introduction was given to the characters. Swartz also went on to say that the show focuses too much on the main characters, and overall called it a "mediocre cartoon".[14] Shelby Watson of The All State praised the show's voice acting, but criticized the show's increased focus on the girls' domestic lives rather than fighting crime, and was especially critical of the animation, writing: "The animation is beyond lazy...the art direction itself is catastrophic. Animators routinely forget their own rules on how to animate their characters, leading to a disjointed style that just comes across like the animators don’t care." Watson also noted other technical problems in the series, such as inconsistencies in character design or misuse of perspective, saying that they "shouldn't happen in a professional studio."

The recasting of the main characters came to the sadness of Cavadini, Daily, and Strong—the latter of whom, on Twitter, called it "a stab in the heart".[3] She had announced after the upfront in February that this was a "strictly creative" decision by the network,[15] though in June of the same year said that the network had never contacted either her or Cavadini and Daily prior to the decision to recast.[3] In an interview with The Comic Book Cast in May 2015, Kenny suggested that McCracken "does give it his blessing", but in May 2016 McCracken denied such claim on his Twitter posts, commenting that he had never given the new reboot his official blessing. McCracken also wished the network had stopped their plans for a reboot of the original Powerpuff Girls property but that he acknowledges from a financial view why the new series was commissioned.[16]

Sources Edit

  2. "Cartoon Network Unveils Upfront Slate for 2015–2016"
  16. "I never officially gave it my blessing I just understood the business reality that I had no power to stop it from being made" -Craig McCracken, via Twitter