Fishtronaut (Portuguese: Peixonauta) is a Brazilian animated children's television series created by Celia Catunda and Kiko Mistrorigo and produced by TV PinGuim, in association with Discovery Kids.
The series tells the story of Fishtronaut, a fish in a spacesuit, similar to reverse scuba gear, which allows him to fly and breathe out of water. He is a secret agent who, along with his friends Marina and Zeek, unravel the mysteries occurring in the Smiling Trees Park. They solve the mysteries with the help of a P.O.P. (Primary Objective Pod), a magical multicolored ball containing clues vital to the mission. Viewers are invited to dance along with the heroes to a tune, so that the P.O.P. will open and release the clues inside. The series is aimed at children ages 3–7 and debuted successfully on Discovery Kids in Latin America on April 20, 2009.
Why It Rocks
- It was the first Brazilian cartoon series to air in the United States, going on air through the Qubo network.
- The series has educational themes on the environment and animals.
- The show also teaches other types of moral lessons sometimes.
- Unlike other preschool shows in the 2000s, the show is smart and does not insult children's intelligence.
- Has decent and likeable characters like Fishtronaut, Marina, Zeek, Billy and Mac, Dr. Green, Rosy Barb and Happy Plumb.
- The animation of the show improved in the second season and even more in the film.
- Amazing voice acting by Fábio Lucindo, Fernanda Bullara, Celso Alves, Renato Márcio, Rogério Viggiani, Raphael Ferreira, Tatá Guarnieri and Jussara Marques.
- During the debut year in 2009, the series quickly became the most watched show broadcast on the Discovery Kids channel.
- It was one of the first Brazilian cartoons to reach mainstream success, which of course results in a lot of merchandise made for the show.
- It also used the same "fake interactivity" formula used in shows like Dora the Explorer, and it works surprisingly well, without being interpreted as forced or annoying.
- The animation is very lazy and cheap (especially in the first season), compared to Earth to Luna!, in addition to an inconsistency in the art style, for example: there are episodes in which the one-time characters have black-bead eyes while the protagonists have sclera.
- The backgrounds are also very lazy.
- Zeek can be annoying sometimes.
- The show is supposed to be set in Brazil, but the Smiling Trees Park has animals from other faunas such as bears, wolves, lions, llamas, hyenas, lemurs and others living together in nature. (Which doesn't make any sense, considering these animals aren't very common in Brazil outside of zoos.)
- The P.O.P. scenes are repetitive and sometimes annoying. Furthermore, they do not make sense, how the characters know the exact movements that must be made to activate the P.O.P., since that the P.O.P. is just a ball?
- Can get pretty formulaic at times.