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Weinerville

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Weinerville
Weinervilletitle
Weinerville title card, as seen on the show's opening sequence.
Genre: Variety show
# of episodes: 62
Running time: 22 minutes per episode
Original run: July 11, 1993 - June 30, 1997
"Oh well, welcome to Weinerville. Ahhhhhh!"
―Dottie at the start of every episode

Nickelodeon Weinerville was an American television program on Nickelodeon that was produced from 1993 to 1994, aired in re-runs to 1997. The show was based around a giant puppet stage which was designed to look like a city, called Weinerville. The show was hosted by Marc Weiner.

Weinerville was a totally outrageous half hour variety show that used classic elements of kids programming, which included puppeteering and interaction with a live studio audience, to entertain kids and their parents. It commanded the attention of such shows as Entertainment Tonight, Good Morning America and The Early Show for being television's first and only half-man/half-puppet variety show where kids are transformed into puppet citizens.

Eyye5-

Picture of the set

The show received numerous award nominations, including two CableACE Award nominations, and has received critical acclaim from: The New York Times, The New York Times Magazine, the Daily News, the New York Post, Newsday, TV Guide and the Los Angeles Times.

The show premiered on July 11, 1993. During the first season, all episodes ran in a two-hour marathon every Sunday. However, Weinerville quickly gained so much popularity that in the middle of the first season Nickelodeon began running the show on weekday afternoons. For the second season, which premiered on September 5, 1994, the episodes aired daily. The show was so popular that Marc and his characters appeared as the hosts for the Nick New Year's Eve '94 and '95 marathons, with the latter marathon including the premiere of the show's first special, The Weinerville New Year's Special: Lost in the Big Apple. Two more specials, The Weinerville Chanukah Special and The Weinerville Election Special: From Washington B.C., followed in 1995 and 1996, respectively. However, the show was not given a third season as Nickelodeon was switching from its family-friendly identity to airing edgy, sarcastic, and somewhat subversive shows, and a puppet show did not fit the new direction. Rerunrs continued to air until June 30, 1997, although the Chanukah special was re-aired on December 21st of that year.

Overview and characters

Nickelodeon Weinerville was filmed at Nickelodeon Studios in Universal Studios Orlando Florida, it was an audience participation comedy show focused on Weiner and his puppets.

Human characters

Rydey

Marc Weiner

  • Marc Weiner, the host who is always forced to solve most of Dottie's problems. In season one, Marc wears an unbuttoned Weinerville baseball jersey with a green undershirt. In season two, the color of his undershirts changes.
  • Kevin L.M.N.O.P, the "executive producer" on the show, who makes three appearances (only in season 2). The character, played by an older child, is a play on the name of the real executive producer of the program, current MTV Networks executive Kevin Kay.

Puppets

  • Dottie, the Mayor of Weinerville. She had a Sidekick named "Zip".
  • Baby Jeffrey, who introduces Marc at the beginning of each episode and always makes a mess.
  • Big Pops, who is the owner of the Diner. (only in season 1)
  • Schnitzel, a fresh/sassy, parrot sidekick. (only in season 1)
  • Commander Ozone, a space traveler who defends evil and saves the universe with his sidekick, Wilson, who sounds like Scotty from Star Trek. In Season 1, he was Captain Ozone, and Wilson didn't sound like Scotty.
  • Eric Von Firstensecond, Commander Ozone's evil enemy. He always tries to figure out an evil scheme to take over Weinerville, or to marry Dottie. (only in season 2)
  • Cocktail Frank, the bandleader of the house band of the show "Cocktail Frank And His Weenies." Frank is the lead singer/guitarist.
  • Joey Deluxe, The big shot manager/ and powerful TV show agent.
  • Soup Dream, The 'That's not Fair' game show host.
(All of the above characters feature Weiner's head and a puppet body.)
  • Professor Phosphate, a Muppet-like puppet with green hair who can only be seen from the waist up. Phosphate is the owner of Weinerville Labs, and often causes explosions. Despite this, he often solves problems. (only in season 2)
  • Boney, an obvious parody of Barney, he is a dinosaur skeleton who is beloved by children but hates them (the "theme song" to his show consisted of said puppet singing "I'm Boney, I'm Boney, leave me aloney, now get out of here!"). According to the 1995 summer issue of Nickelodeon Magazine, Boney is Weiner's favorite puppet.
  • Zip, Dottie's helper, who always gets himself into trouble, makes his famous trademark scream and crashes into the wall.
  • Pops, (aka "Little Pops"), the local chef.
  • Louie, the local laundromat owner who always argues with Pops.
  • Socko, an inverted hand puppet who likes to kick people, especially Marc.

Other sketches

The show also featured several non-puppet characters played by Weiner himself:

  • Captain Bob, a sea pirate in yellow rain gear that constantly cracks puns. On many shows, an audience member would be invited to climb aboard Captain Bob's pirate ship, where the host would fling water on him before the "tidal wave" (a bucket of water thrown by a stage hand) soaked the participant.
  • The Weinerville General Store, Members of the audience were also called down to participate in various activities during the main part of the show, such as helping to demonstrate items in the Weinerville General Store. A recurring joke on the show took place in the General Store, in which Weiner would sell comedic props similar to those of Carrot Top. Nearly everything in the store sold for $13.50. (only in season 1) (See Running Joke for uses of $13.50)
  • Running Joke, Occasionally, the "$13.50" gag was used in other segments, for example: on the "Talent Show" episode the winners won with 1,350 points, on the "DTV" episode, DTV was on channel 1350, and on the General Store and Captain Bob skits, that would be the price when Marc would hand the participant anything.
  • That's Not Fair!, A game show where a kid and an adult played for points answering questions. Usually the kids win. (only in season 2)
  • Playland, Two participants would be selected to be new citizens in Weinerville by Weinerzing (See Below). These participants then competed in one of various carnival-style games in "Playland" that tested the skill of operating their puppet bodies. The runner-up received the "Silver Hot Dog", with the winner receiving the "Golden Hot Dog" as well as the "Special Topping" (a small amount of green slime dumped onto the player's head). Occasionally, both players received the Special Topping (especially in the second season), and if the game involved pies, both contestants would be hit with pies themselves instead of anyone getting the Special Topping. The Playland stage was enlarged and revamped the second season to incorporate more elaborate stunts; these frequently had the contestants facing each other and squirting water or whipped cream at some target, usually soaking the other contestant in the process.

Weinerizing

Weinerizer

The Weinerizer.

The show always ended with Weiner choosing two people from the audience to get "Weinerized" (turned into puppets). The participants entered a contraption called the "Weinerizer", which appeared to then shrink them to the puppet size (it did so by having the contestants place their heads into a hole above a miniature puppet body). Although the audience members were ostensibly chosen at random, Matt Day (who at the time was working on another Nickelodeon show, Clarissa Explains It All) revealed that participants were sometimes selected beforehand.

Episodes

All episodes aired out of sequence in no particular order.

# Episode title Air date

Season 1 (1993)

1 Marc's Mother Visits July 11, 1993
2 Tooth Hurty
3 Humidity
4 Cleaning Day
5 Zip In Space
6 Missing Cartoon
7 Giant Spider
8 Haunted
9 Weight Loss
10 Football
11 Zip Stuck In VCR
12 Magic Episode
13 Bubblegum
14 Talent Show
15 Dottie's Birthday
16 Spaghetti
17 Bake Off
18 Balloon Zip
19 Baseball
20 Budget Cutbacks
21 Popcorn
22 Recycling
23 Snow Day
24 Train Ride
25 Zip's Family Treasure
26 Ziggy Zag Concert
27 Show #27
28 Show #28
29 Show #29

Season 2 (1994)

30 Ratville
31 Dottie's Replacement
32 Weinerville For Sale
33 Eric Von Firstenseconds' Spell
34 60 Seconds News
35 Fire Safety
36 Magic Lamp
37 The Puppet's Court
38 Broken Weinerizer
39 Network Censors
40 Louie Becomes a Citizen
41 Louie's Crush
42 S.G. Dottie's Cousin
43 Brain Switch
44 Parallel Universe
45 Boney's Spell
46 The Time-Slot War
47 Dottie's High School Reunion
48 Loca-Cola
49 Weinervilla
50 Ego Crazy
51 Marc's Arians
52 Variety Show or Sitcom
53 DTV
54 Socko Framed
55 Royal Dottie
56 Zip Runs Away
57 Dottie’s Dating Game
58 Weinerville: The Movie
59 Marc's Lost Memory
60 Back to the Past from a Look into the Future
61 Pollution
62 XR-3 Space Shuttle Game

Specials

The Weinerville New Year's Special: Lost in the Big Apple December 31, 1994
The Weinerville Chanukah Special December 14, 1995
The Weinerville Election Special: From Washington B.C. February 17, 1996

Nickelodeon broadcast history

NOTE: All times are Eastern.

Date Time slot
July 1993 - November 1996 Sunday, 2:00 p.m. (Sunday Marathon)
October 1993 - September 1994 Monday-Friday, 3:30 p.m.
September 1994 - August 1996 Monday-Friday, 3:00 p.m.
August 1996 - June 1997 Monday-Friday, 7:00 a.m.

Guest stars

On the second season and the specials Weinerville had special guest appearances:

Cartoon shorts

Before Weinerville made its debut, Nickelodeon ran the cartoons by themselves on a half-hour block called "Cartoon Kablooey".

  • Season 1 (1993-1993) / Sunday Marathon (1993-1996): Classic Paramount and UPA cartoons
  • Re-runs (1995-1997): Throughout 1995, the shorts were all shuffled, but in 1996 they began exclusively showing Batfink and Courageous Cat & Minute Mouse

Due to Viacom not owning the full rights to these cartoons, when Weinerville was broadcast on The '90s Are All That on April 1, 2015, the cartoons were cut entirely from the episodes. Later, the broadcasts of Weinerville on The Splat on October 10, 2015, had the block's commercial spoofs and Rugrats episodes appearing in place of the cartoons.

Marc Weiner's Weinerville Live

After the show finished its run, in 1996 Marc took the show on a live tour. In 2001 Marc started the show again in the United Kingdom more live shows were done through out the years.

E.A.G.A.H.B.E.D.D.

There was also a 13-minute educational VHS video made for the National Dairy Council called E.A.G.A.H.B.E.D.D. The title stands for "Eat A Good And Healthy Breakfast Every Day Day" and is done in the style of an abbreviated Weinerville episode, with the usual characters and sets but without the Playland segment.

External links

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