There are family brands that hit a home run with every new show they put out and PBS is one of those that seldom misses. PBS Kids announced the release of a new Mister Rogers spinoff show is coming next year, and it sounds like it’s going to become our kids’ next TV obsession.
According to the press release, the new series — Donkey Hodie — is set to premiere nationwide on PBS Kids 24/7 channel and its digital platforms starting in 2021. They call it “a new social-emotional series for children ages 3-5,” and it’s created by Spiffy Pictures and Fred Rogers Productions.
“We were really inspired by the silly side of Fred Rogers, and it’s a thrill to expand the Someplace Else world he dreamed up,” said Adam Rudman, co-founder of Spiffy Pictures. “We’re excited to share brand new lovable and funny puppet characters with preschoolers and their families,” added David Rudman, co-founder of Spiffy Pictures.
Donkey Hodie is a yellow donkey with a magenta mohawk, and he’s got a fun cast of best friends, too. A purple Panda, Bob Dog, and Duck Duck who all help to “empower preschoolers to dream big and overcome obstacles in their own lives, to work hard and persevere in the face of failure, to be resourceful and discover they are capable of solving problems on their own—and to laugh themselves silly along the way.”
Sounds about the right group of wacky enough characters to spark the interest of any preschooler. The series has been given the green light for 40 half-hour episodes. Donkey Hodie is the granddaughter of the original Donkey Hodie that appeared on the original Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood show. This makes Donkey Hodie a little like Daniel Tiger’ Neighborhood because both shows feature decedents of puppets from the original Mister Rogers. (Daniel Tiger’s dad was a puppet back in the day.)
PBS also announced new episodes of Odd Squad are coming with a full new season set to begin airing on PBS Kids February 2020.