Hey! It’s not a wonderful kind of day, because iconic children’s animated series Arthur has been cancelled after a record-breaking 25-year run on screens.
The long-running show, which aired on the BBC in the UK, will hold a special place in the hearts of many adults, who grew up watching and singing along to its instantly recognisable theme song.
The series was produced by US broadcaster PBS, which aired the first ever episode back in October 1996, inspired by the Arthur Adventure book series from children’s author Marc Brown.
The eponymous Arthur is an anthropomorphic aardvark boy, who attends elementary school with his best friend Buster, a rabbit, while other buddies include poodle Prunella, monkey Francine and bulldog Binky.
Each episode consists of two stories that intend to educate children on a wide variety of subjects and issues that could affect them in their lives, with the series earning high praise across its run.
However, in an interview on Finding D.W., a podcast in which host Jason Szwimer attempts to track down the voice actors who portrayed Arthur’s younger sister, series developer Kathy Waugh revealed the show had been axed.
“Arthur is no longer in production. We had our wrap party two years ago,” she said. “I think [PBS] made a mistake, and I think Arthur should come back and I’m know I’m not alone in thinking they made a mistake.
“I don’t know if it was a ratings issue or if it felt like it needed to be retired. To me, it felt evergreen, like it was never going to end but it did end, we finished the last episode [of] season 25 two years ago.”
The 25th season of Arthur is expected to conclude in the United States on PBS Kids in 2022, while earlier episodes are currently available to stream on BBC iPlayer.
Arthur is the longest-running children’s animated series in American history and the second longest-running in the entire country behind only The Simpsons.
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