Question: What was the first Cartoon Network original series? A lot of animation fans would probably say Dexter's Laboratory. Others may be more clever and point at What A Cartoon! Show, the anthology series from which Dexter's Lab and many of the network's early Cartoon Cartoons originated. And still others will have done a bit more homework and point to Space Ghost Coast to Coast as the network's first original series. All those people would be wrong. note
Premiering in 1993, The Moxy Show was Cartoon Network's first-ever original series. Initially known as The Moxy Pirate Show, it was a collection of classic Hanna-Barbera cartoons with CGI-animated interstitials placed in-between, starring Moxy the dog and his friend Flea. The show originally only featured Moxy and was entitled The Moxy Pirate Show; Flea wasn't added until 1994, with the show gaining its new name of The Moxy Show upon his debut appearance.
In 1995, the final episode was produced, with this episode being an intended pilot episode for another iteration of the series, The Moxy & Flea Show. This new show was never greenlit for its own series due to poor reception.
If you're sitting here wondering why you've never heard of this cartoon before an hours-long dive into TV Tropes or that one cameo from an episode of OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes, it's because The Moxy Show is one of the biggest examples of lost media that Cartoon Network has to offer. The series never saw reruns after Boomerang was spun off into its own network in 2000, and no form of home media containing any part of the show was ever released. Only segments of an assumed 24 episodes have been found, leaving Moxy and Flea as the most forgotten characters in the channel's stable.
This show provides examples of:
- Accessory-Wearing Cartoon Animal: Flea only wears a propeller beanie.
- A Dog Named "Dog": Flea is a flea named Flea.
- Comically Missing the Point: One episode had a scene where Flea tells Moxy he needs a catchphrase. When he uses Daffy Duck's catchphrase "You're despicable!" as an example, Moxy takes it as Daffy actually thinking he's despicable.
- The Eponymous Show: All three of the titles which the show was known by use this naming convention.
- Everything's Better with Monkeys: How about monkey aliens? In The Moxy & Flea Show, Moxy and Flea are abducted by alien monkeys who then proceed to experiment on them.
- Fully Dressed Cartoon Animal: Moxy is fully clothed.
- Funny Animal: Moxy is an anthropomorphic dog.
- He Who Must Not Be Seen: Moxy's boss from The Moxy Pirate Show episodes, who is usually only shown from the neck up.
- Medium Blending: Moxy and Flea are two CGI-animated characters composited over a scale-model set. The set itself was shot in forced perspective, giving it the illusion of depth. There's also Moxy's boss, who appears in live action through the "Boss Alert" monitor.
- Motion Capture: The Moxy Show was one of the first shows done in this technique. He first appeared in a TBS special that was broadcast live, an early experiment in real-time animation.
- Name and Name: The Moxy & Flea Show.
- Product Placement: Moxy's studio has several Cartoon Network logos plastered onto the walls.
- Reminder of Impossibility: In the one episode produced for The Moxy and Flea Show, Moxy is driving a car with Flea when the latter starts to talk about how it bothers him that dogs can't drive. It takes a while for Moxy to be thrown off by the realization that he's a dog driving a car.
- Short Runner: The Moxy & Flea Show is one of the few TV shows to only air one episode.
- World Shapes: The monkey aliens from The Moxy & Flea Show's only episode live on a banana-shaped planet.
- Wrongfully Attributed: For a long time, the Wikipedia page for the show listed Scott Fellows (best known for Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide and Johnny Test) as the creator. At the time, no further information of the show's actual development, or footage from the show had been resurfaced yet. It was only later that one of the show's actual developers was identified, with said developer stating in this interview that Fellows had no involvement.