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Western Animation / Zak Storm

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Zak Storm (French: Zak Storm: Super Pirate) is a French/Korean/Indonesian/American computer-animated children's television series produced by Zagtoon, Method Animation, SAMG Animation, MNC Animation, and Man of Action. It debuted on Canal J in France on December 2, 2016. In the United States, the series debuted in 2017 on KidsClick beginning September 30, Discovery Family from October 14, and Netflix from November 1.

The eponymous Zak Storm is an athletic, headstrong and adventurous kid who's also a self-admitted surf rat and wannabe internet "celebrity." One fateful day, he does his usual routine of surfing while recording his feats via his board-mounted webcam, only this time, he sneaks and grabs his father's special necklace beforehand to wear for good luck. This proves to be both his undoing and the key to his destiny. Suddenly, a storm appears between clear skies and nowhere, complete with ominous skull-shaped clouds hovering above Zak that causes his surf to become dangerously wild. With his father's vain attempts to get Zak to ditch the necklace (who seems to know what's really up with it and the storm), due to the fact that father and son are too far to communicate clearly, Mr. Storm watches the inevitable. A tsunami portal appears and sucks Zak into its depths.


One surf-tunnel ride later, Zak awakens in an ocean in the middle of nowhere. Quickly realizing he's nowhere near home, his good luck charm awakens a sentient ship that saves him from a sea monster. He quickly acquaints himself with both a poltergeist named Clovis and some nasty skeleton pirates, the latter of whom unknowingly jump-starts Zak's heroic, high seas destiny when they lead to him unlocking the powers of a magical talking sword.

After his first adventure in what turns out to be a Pocket Dimension in The Bermuda Triangle, Zak's quest home eventually leads him to partner up with the aforementioned magical talking sword, Calabrass a.k.a. "The Great Key", which allows him to transform into a swashbuckling, renegade hero in order to face the numerous perils of the unique and diverse Seven Seas of the Triangle, along with the above-mentioned Clovis, an Atlantean headstrong female first mate named Crysta Coraline Lejune, or Cece for short, a thick-headed heavy-fisted Viking named Crogar, and a neurotic space traveler named Caramba. This motley crew of friends do their adventuring on The Chaos, an otherworldly, transforming sea vessel that bonds itself to Zak, as sure as Calabrass does, upon its awakening.


Zak Storm provides examples of:

  • Aborted Arc: Downplayed. In "Origins Part 2", it is mentioned that the only way anybody can leave the Bermuda Triangle is to use Calabrass - "The Great Key" - and unlock the Seven Locks spread across the Seven Seas, each guarded by an ancient guardian. While the big end-goal is to escape the triangle, the rest of Season One involves the Seven C's either defending Marituga or dealing with Skullivar's forces. They do start making more progress on that front as time goes on though, with things really picking up near the end of the first season.
  • Adaptation Species Change: In the original animated short, Cece was human, Caramba was a very different kind of alien, and Crogar (or his equivalent) was an anthropomorphic shark-octopus hybrid.
  • Aliens Steal Cable: Caramba claims that Earth television is very popular on his planet, though the broadcasts are from 1965.
  • Alliterative Name: The Seven Cs all have names starting with the letter "C". Their team name even sells it! And yes, this includes Zak.
  • And the Adventure Continues: Season 1 ends with the activated waypoints unlocking an eighth sea in the Bermuda Triangle that the heroes enter to continue their search for a way out with Golden Bones and Skullivar still at large.
  • Apparently Human Merfolk:
    • Cece as expected of a Atlantean princess.
    • Sea Trolls are an amphibious race of Shark Men. They love gold, they cannot breath underwater, they are considered vermin to Atlanteans and they are massive.
    • The Lemurian Empire are a powerful ocean empire that is at war with Atlantis, notable for their adaptable, Obsidian armor.
  • Astral Projection: One of the powers granted by the Eye of Zite.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: The Eye of Chronos. An artefact that gives its user the ability to travel back in time one hour to alter the present paradox-free. But only once, and then the stone disappears to a different part of the Bermuda Triangle.
  • Awesome McCoolname: The titular Zak Storm. Even Calabrass compliments on it being a "powerful name." Definitely a moniker befitting of any Pirate.
  • The Bermuda Triangle: The series takes place within what appears to be a Pocket Dimension in the Bermuda Triangle.
  • BFS: Crogar's "sword" appears to be a modified airplane wing, complete with functioning jet engines.
  • Cool Boat: The Chaos. A somewhat sentient pirate ship that can sail itself.
  • Cool Sword/Living Weapon: The Great Key, a magical talking sword that prefers to be addressed as Calabrass. Also triples as an Impossibly Cool Weapon, thanks to his ability to grant Zak elemental powers channeled through the blade itself.
  • Cosmic Keystone: The lighthouse on Marituga apparently acts as this. Should anything happen to it, the Bermuda Triangle will collapse, probably killing everyone in it. Apparently, the best case scenario is that the various realms of the Triangle will be cut off from each other, the island is destroyed, and everyone being stuck in the Triangle forever.
  • Cowardly Lion: Caramba is extremely nervous about going into a fight, but that robot suit of his is no joke.
  • Create Your Own Hero: Golden Bones, in the first episode: If he had just listened to what Zak tried to tell him instead of attacking him immediately, he could have obtained Calabrass and the Eye of Blazz without any trouble.
  • Dark Is Evil: Skullivar is a prime example.
    • The Lemurians are also this partially due to there obsidian armor.
  • Darker and Edgier: Though a chiefly lighthearted adventure, the show is much more violent and intense than its sister program Miraculous Ladybug, with its major antagonists unambiguously wanting to kill the hero for his magic sword.
  • Deader Than Dead: Golden Bones' hook is capable of killing ghosts.
  • Death World: Each of the Bermuda Triangle's seas is brimming with danger.
    • Aeria: A landless storm-ridden void that is impossible to navigate without the right vessel.
    • Beru: A vast blue expanse teeming with life. A majority of it hostile.
    • Blazz: A hellish sea of lava which is completely uninhabited thanks to its previous denizens wiping themselves out by provoking the ire of its indigenous infernal monsters.
    • Dezer: Nothing but a desert. Hence the name. Animals that call it home have grown humongous and violent to survive.
    • Sino: Massive frozen tundra loaded with ice bergs. The only thing colder than its waters or glaciers is the icy breath of the wyverns that patrol the sky.
    • Vapir: A land of ghosts, illusions, and supernatural creatures that prey on the living, and home of the Big Bad.
    • Zite: An enigmatic realm. Deceptively beautiful, but if its virtually unkillable living nightmares won't do you in, then the godlike spectral giants who rule the place might just incinerate you with a stray thought.
  • Declaration of Protection: The theme song is pretty much Zak giving this to the crew of the Chaos. It's him saying, that, at least until they all return home, he will be their captain and look after them on their adventures. Don't believe me? Have a listen here.
  • Dem Bones: Golden Bones and the skeleton army (As the name suggests) are living skeletons which can reattach severed limbs and can even grab ghosts.
  • Didn't Want an Adventure: Zak just wanted to go home. He probably wasn't expecting the pirate life was part of the equation.
  • Distressed Dude: Due to his inconvenient episodes of cowardice, Caramba is easily subdued by villains when he's separated from his friends, resulting in him being held hostage/kidnapped the most out of any of the Chaos' crew.
  • The Dreaded: Golden Bones. In spite of all his losses, the heroes know better than to engage a pirate who's virtually invincible or his minions that never tire for a protracted period of time and always make good their escape the first chance they get. Case in point, when he manages to definitively corner the Chaos in "Burn Out," he not only sinks it, but kills most of its crew. Thankfully, this was undone by time travel.
  • Eldritch Location: Arguably, all the triangle seas are this in some form or another, but special mention goes to Zite AKA the sea of stars, which is weird even by the triangle's standards.
  • Elemental Powers: Each of the Eyes gives Calabrass/Zak a power based off of a different element.
  • Epic Flail: Clovis's main weapon is a ball and chain.
  • Evil Knockoff: Skullivar commissions the construction of "The Eel" after his first personal encounter with Zack, which is pretty much a dark version of the Chaos. Skullivar later makes one to the Eyes, the Eye of Netherwhere.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: The Bermuda Triangle is a magnet for strange things of varying origins, and is thus home to things from vikings and pirates to things like magic, Mayan artifacts of great power, benign ghosts, evil spirits, animated skeletons, wyverns, Apparently Human Merfolk of differing species, Magitek, Humanoid Aliens, all trapped together with no way out.
  • Fartillery: One of Clovis's "powers" that he seemingly can fire on-will. He has no real control on direction once its released, so he tends to gas his allies as much as his enemies. Also, being a nose-less skeleton doesn't block the smell.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Caramba, a gifted alien engineer who acts as the crew's mechanic.
  • Gold Makes Everything Shiny: As his name implies, Golden Bones has, well, golden bones.
  • The Gunslinger: Cece seems to keep a number of ranged weapons on hand, but primarily uses blasters.
  • Hate Sink: Flint. He's considered "a crook" even by other pirates and Golden Bones holds him in utter contempt whenever he has to deal with him.
  • Henshin Hero: When Zak holds Calabrass aloft and speaks the words "Give me the Eye of *Element*!", he goes through a, downplayed on the outset, Transformation Sequence, wherein Calabrass becomes imbued with the respective element and Zak is engulfed with a macabre-leaning (sometimes including clawed hands, like in Blazz mode) full-armor on his left arm; his headband piece becomes a matching eye-patch to boot.
    • As is often tradition in these scenarios, the first time he does this, reluctantly at that, he is taken aback by how freaky it all is, immediately noticing his clawed, armored left hand and his new Eyepatch of Power. Calabrass convinces him to get past the weirdness and fight, and Zak kinda settles into the otherworldly supernatural-ness of his transformation as soon as he settles into sword fighting, transforming from then on with more confidence and enthusiasm, though at one point early on he asks for the Eye of Blazz, but is given the Eye of Dezer instead.
  • Horny Vikings: Crogar. Most of his armor consists of scavenged airplane parts, but he's managed to keep the horns.
  • Hostile Weather: Specifically, it's actually the precursor to an opening pathway leading into the Seven Seas of the Bermuda Triangle, triggered by The Eye of Beru. Mr. Storm seemed to know this, but Zak thought it was just a good luck charm and unwittingly "activated" it while surfing.
  • Hulk Speak: Crogar does this a lot.
  • If My Calculations Are Correct: Caramba's catchphrase.
  • Instant Expert/How Do I Shot Web?: Mixed and matched when it comes to Zak's sword fighting abilities. The former Trope is justified in part due to Calabrass being an enchanted sword who can control Zak's swing so long as Zak's hold is firm. He also gives him a crash course in sword fighting. Chekhov's Skill also comes into play, as Zak instinctively realizes that sword fighting requires a sense of balance and quick reflexes like surfing does, which, when combined with his natural athleticism, allows him to pick up his sword groove all the the quicker.
  • The Juggernaut: Morlok The Unstoppable, enchanted armor controlled by a remote host.
  • Kraken and Leviathan: As expected in a magic ocean that there are monsters in the deep. Heck the kraken are huge with one eye and sharp teeth.
  • Letter Motif: All of Zak's crew have names that start with C: Cece, Clovis, Crogar, and Caramba, along with the sword Calabrass and the ship Chaos. In episode 2, Zak counted himself as "Captain" so that they would have seven C's. His full name is also later revealed to be Conrad Zacharie Storm, which fits the motif anyway.
  • Living Ship: The Chaos is sentient, apparently due to Magitek, and prone to getting moody.
  • Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: Zephyra, a gorgeous Dark Action Girl cum Perky Goth, who just happens to be the daughter of the rather hideous skinflint witch doctor Sassafras.
  • Morph Weapon: Calabrass can take a number of different forms depending on which Eye Zak uses:
  • My Significance Sense Is Tingling: Calabrass "feels it in his jangly teeth" when there is treasure nearby.
  • Mythology Gag:
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Skullivar's forces alone fit about two and a half out of four in the trope name, being mostly Pirate Skeleton Robots. Skullivar himself adds a dash of Evil Sorcerer to the mix.
  • No Ontological Inertia: In the episode "The Stowaway", when the clone of the Chaos is defeated(turned back into 'metamorphic' particles), its fake antibody robots are destroyed into those same particles, which quickly disappear.
  • Only the Chosen May Wield: When Cece tries to use Calabrass's powers, he responds that only Zak - his "cap'n" - is able to use him and the Eyes that power him.
  • Orcus on His Throne: Skullivar remains on his base and lets Golden Bones do his dirty work, only interfering directly through the use of a suit of invulnerable armor he puppeteered once. This is because he is the guardian of one of the waypoints, and was staying put to guard it.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: Clovis swears he's not really a ghost. Rather, he's just "misplaced" his body is all. Functionally, however, he is, though he can interact and pass through what he wills as he wills, with a handful of exceptions, demonstrably Golden Bones.
    • The Sea of Vapir is a ghost to the entire Bermuda Triangle, consisting of miscellaneous semi-sentient "echoes" from the six other seas and outright spirits of deceased buccaneers.
  • People Puppets: With a touch of demonic possession as the beings tricked Zak and Cece to leave their bodies so they can possess their bodies for themselves.
  • Percussive Maintenance: Zak fixes Chaos's engine by kicking it.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: Calabrass often complains that the crew's do-gooding and adventures precludes them from doing traditional shenanigans like looting or treasure hunting. Other buccaneers like Alan Gamble, Flint, and Golden Bones, who do engage in buccaneer skulduggery, are depicted in a much less favourable light by the show.
  • Pocket Dimension: The Triangle's Seven Seas.
  • Power Limiter: The powers bestowed by Calabrass aren't indefinite. Especially early on in the series (due to his recent reawakening), Calabrass tires out easily, causing his enchantments to fade relatively quickly even if Zak's still holding fast to him. This prompts a retreat for the heroes in the first episode.
  • Powerful and Helpless: Clovis can fly, teleport, turn intangible, and summon a powerful ball-and-chain to fight enemies. He'd be one of the most useful members of the group who could solve most of their problems in a snap...if he wasn't stuck to the Chaos and its general vicinity.
  • Psychic Powers: Cece apparently has these, judging by how she sensed an Atlantean treasure being stolen by Golden Bones. Now why didn't Kida have these?
  • Protagonist Title: Zak Storm, which is named after the young leading Captain himself, whether the subtitle of Super Pirate is present or otherwise.
  • Pulling Themselves Together: Skullivar's Mooks can do this ad infinitum, which is why while they're easy to beat, Zak and his crew tend to make good their escape at the first opportunity during most of their skirmishes with them because they never get exhausted from doing so.
  • Punny Name: Alan Gamble. As in, an "All-In" Gamble.
  • Required Secondary Powers: Zak's transformations grant these. For example, the Eye of Beru's powers allow Zak to breathe underwater, the eye of Blazz allows Zak to withstand lava-level heat unscathed, etc. Interestingly, Aeria does not grant electricity resistance.
  • Rocket-Powered Weapon: Crogar's wing blade can use it's engines to enhance it's strike.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Zak forces his exhausted friends to come with him on his quest for the Eye of Chronos in "Burn Out" because he believes that the one-time ability to rewind time by an hour might prove useful in the future. He winds up having to use the stone immediately due to Golden Bones killing the entire crew sans him and Calabrass.
  • Sickly Green Glow: Skullivar and his minions are associated with a sickly green color.
  • Skeleton Crew: Skullivar's forces count as this, an army of skeleton pirates acting as his grunts and Golden Bones as his general and Captain of their navy's lead ship "the Demoniac".
  • Sky Surfing: The Chaos has a deploy-able rocket board called the Plank in the prow, which Zak quickly gets the hang of due to his experience with traditional surfing.
  • Super Drowning Skills: Crogar is the only member of the crew who can't swim. At all.
  • Super Not-Drowning Skills: Cece, being an Atlantean, and Zak when using the Eye of Beru.
  • Summon to Hand: Parodied In Episode 1 where Zak tries this when he is disarmed by Captain Golden Bones. Zak even comments that it works in the movies.
  • Third-Person Person: Crogar always refers to Crogar as Crogar. Calabasas will refer to himself like this in occasion, as well.
  • This Looks Like a Job for Aquaman: Not the Eye of Beru, shockingly enough, as the ability to breathe underwater is quite handy in the setting, and it also gives the only true ranged weapon among the eyes in its Ray Gun. Rather, the Eye of Zite is Zak's least used stone because it's only real asset is being able to harm foes from Zite. Case in point, an attack by it that dissolves celestial monsters and banishes spectres back to Zite is just a harmless light show when employed against anything else.
  • True Companions: The crew quickly evolves into this.
  • Un-Robotic Reveal: At first, Caramba looks like a round yellow robot with an expressive face. However, he is actually a tiny green alien in a robotic suit.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Due to the "Weirdness Magnet" nature The Bermuda Triangle operates on, not that many people bat an eye towards talking swords, sentient Magitek sailboats, Apparently Human Merfolk, vikings with airplane wings for weapons, aliens, walking, talking skeletons, etc.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Skullivar, at least partially. His own subordinates refer to Skullivar's enemies as "villains" (at least in Skullivar's presence).
  • Villains Never Lie: If forced to negotiate, Golden Bones and Skullivar tend to honour their side of an agreement such as a surrender or hostage exchange.
  • Was Once a Man: Calabrass used to be human. With the finest looking mustache in the Seven Seas, according to him.
  • Wham Episode: "Call to Adventure" ends with the revelation that Zak's father had crossed paths with Golden Bones in the past.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: For some reason, the Triangle is locked, and no one can leave. Calabrass is so sought after because he's the Great Key, the only one who (through his chosen captain, Zak) can unlock the Triangle and allow people to leave.