Western Animation / Wild Animal Baby Explorers

"If we look all around, who knows what we might see? Come join our team!"

Wild Animal Baby Explorers is a series currently airing on weekends on many PBS stations and also available on home video. The series aims to teach very young audiences about animals and nature through a group of young animals that explore the world around them. The series blends mediums by using CGI animation for the main animation, Adobe Flash for the characters' Imagine Spots and actual footage of nature from the archives of National Wildlife Foundation as the characters get out into nature and explore. The series is based on an early property, a magazine called Wild Animal Baby and was preceded by an earlier home video property also called simply Wild Animal Baby featuring mostly the same characters, but without Sammy the Skunk.

The series is presented in widescreen HD where available. The complete series is now available on a 4-DVD set under the title The Lovable Learning World of Animals.

Wild Animal Baby Explorers features examples of:

  • Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: Izzy the owl is the only example, as a blue owl. The others all have normal coloring for their type of animal.
  • Catch Phrase: Skip's "Never fear, I have Explora-gear!"
  • Diurnal Nocturnal Animal: Izzy the owl.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: In many of the earlier installments, Benita has a very odd character model - much larger eyes and a differently shaped head. It seems as if they were trying to make her cuter, but the overall appearance comes off as if they had taken an incomplete CG render and plopped in into the finished show. Curiously, even in these earlier installments, Benita's later character model is still seen in the show's opening sequence. Additionally, the opening theme tune doesn't sound quite as fast-paced and the character's names aren't called out loud when they appear on-screen.
  • Edutainment Show: Mostly teaches kids about animals, but also often promotes basic Aesops and pro-social values. In any case, each episode contains a lot of facts about animals, and not just the standard stuff either. Even adults watching are likely to pick up a few things they didn't know before.
  • Expressive Ears: Skip the rabbit, to a limited degree
  • Funny Animal: The cast members are basically this, given their speech, use of technology and their general concerns of exploring and learning. They're Wild Animal Baby Explorers because it's wild animals that they're exploring, not they themselves that are wild animals.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Skip the rabbit
  • Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: There is at least a slightly different variation for each character:
    • Skip the Rabbit wears shorts but no shirt.
    • Sammy the Skunk wears overalls but no shirt.
    • Izzy the Owl wears only an aviator cap and goggles.
    • Benita the Beaver wears a tee shirt but no pants.
    • Miss Sally the Salamander wears a vest but no pants.
  • Imagine Spot: Usually at least Once per Episode, presented in Adobe Flash
  • Iris Out: The standard ending, usually zooming in a character's face before going to the credits.
  • Malaproper: Sammy the Skunk is this, but only because he's younger than the other characters and therefore is still learning the right words.
    Skip: We are a looking at a hippopotamus.
    Sammy: Hippo... bottomus? Hipsomonoplus?
    Skip: We can also just say "hippo."
  • Medium Blending: The main characters and environment are presented in CGI. It's not exactly high-budget CGI, but it does the job. Adobe Flash is used to present the Imagine Spot segments in thought bubbles overtop the CGI environment, while live-action footage from the archives of the National Wildlife Foundation is used to show the animals that the Wild Animal Baby Explorers observe. There are also live-action interstitial segments featuring real kids and adult guides.
  • The Mentor: Miss Sally
  • The Owl-Knowing One: Izzy the owl knows a lot of things, but isn't always a good sport when he gets something wrong or has to admit he doesn't know something.
  • Running Gag: Sammy the Skunk randomly playing hide-and-seek with the other characters and they never quite know when he's going to do it.
    Benita: Sammy just loves-loves-loves to hide! And we love-love-love to find!
  • Theme Tune Roll Call: As already mentioned, only in the latter installments. The earlier ones don't have it.