ⓘ Locomotion (TV channel)
Locomotion was a Latin American pay television channel dedicated to anime and animated shows targeting primarily an 18–34 audience, broadcasting movies, TV series and shorts. It was launched on 1 November 1996 and was closed down on 31 July 2005. It was also broadcast in Portugal through Cabovisão and TVCabo, and in Spain by satellite TV provider Via Digital until 2003 due to administrative reasons with the TV operator.
Initially, Locomotion was a channel dedicated to animation for all ages, broadcasting titles from King Features which was Hearsts animation division, other acquired shows, and adult animation for an evening block. However, the channel did not want to face competition against the already-established Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network, so the channel began removing the childrens animation in favour for alternative animation, adult series, and anime by 1998, and by 2000, they began airing more alternative and adult-oriented animation from the US, the United Kingdom and Latin America, as well as anime series.
As the network grew, most of their programming consisted of Japanese animation titles from the likes of ADV Films, Bandai Entertainment, & Geneon and others as well as adult shows like South Park, The Critic, Crapston Villas and Duckman. Locomotion was also dedicated to showing works of experimental animation from all over the world throughout the day on-air and online. They aired experimental programming featuring video jockeys, artists who worked with video as a medium.
The network, whose corporate offices were based in Miami, Florida though the network was not available in the United States aside from a few cable systems in southern Florida was a joint venture between the US-based Hearst Corporation, 50% and Claxson Interactive Group, Inc. a subsidiary of the Venezuelan-based Cisneros Group 50%. In May 2002, Cisneros Group sold its shares in the network to Canadian-based Corus Entertainment. The channel was purchased by Sony in 2005 and was later rebranded as Animax.
One of Locomotions VJ projects was a computer-rendered character known as Loco, produced by "Modern Cartoons". The character, which mostly appeared during commercial breaks, made humorous comments, and did nonsensical things entertaining the viewers. The mascot disappeared as the channel changed its image.
A final, yet brief reference of Loco when Animax replaced Locomotion, which is the part where the special agents sent to save Locomotion, they received a call from "Loco" before he gets killed.
2. Logo history
Locomotions first logo resembled a red head with a "Loco" on its face and a "Motion" in its mouth. This was used since the launch of the channel and was phased out in 1999 as the channel began shifting towards alternative and adult animation series, such as South Park, as well as anime series.
Locomotions second logo retained the head from the previous logo, although colored white and inside a gray circle and lacking the details the previous logo had. The "Locomotion" was shown left of the "circle" in an Italicized font. This was used from 1999 to May 2002.
Locomotions third logo was the same as the previous logo, but the "circle" now colored most of the time red and blue as opposed to gray and the logo was updated. This logo was used since Claxsons sale of their stake in the channel to Corus Entertainment, all the way until the closure of the channel.
A variation of the third logo had the words "Animestation" below the "Locomotion" of the logo since the channel ceased to broadcast in Spain and Portugal. It was used from 2004 until the closure of the channel in 2005.
3. TV blocks
The programming of this channel was divided in thematic blocks which are:
- Anime Loving: As its name says, a space dedicated to anime lovers.
- Replay: The best of the week.
- Japanimotion/JapanOK!: A space dedicated to better Japanese animation, hidden gems of anime, Anime films and anime series.
- Love Vision: Short animations and experimental music broadcast between TV programs.
- Cortos Locomotion: Short films between each space of TV programs.
- Kapsula: Space dedicated to the best directors of experimental animation and where the people can send their works.
- 80s TV: A space dedicated to all cartoons that were a hit in the decade.
- Fracto: A space dedicated to experimental animation and techno music.
- Animafilms: A space dedicated to hidden International animation gems.
4. Acquisition, shutdown and aftermath
Locomotion was bought by Sony Pictures Entertainment Latin America in January 2005 from Hearst Corporation and Corus Entertainment. After the acquisition of the network and until its shutdown, the non-anime shows where dropped from their programming in order to focus more on an all anime line-up. The network officially ceased to exist at 11:00 a.m. on July 31 of the same year however, the broadcast of Locomotion stopped on the night of July 30 and was replaced by a countdown clock. From then on, the network had been transformed into the Latin American branch of Animax.
Of all the programming broadcast previously on Locomotion, only Vandread, Saber Marionette J, Saber Marionette J to X, Soul Hunter, Serial Experiments Lain, The Candidate for Goddess and Earth Girl Arjuna were picked and broadcast by Animax on their early programming. As of February 2006, all those series were off the air. Neon Genesis Evangelion and Super Milk Chan, both which had aired on Locomotion, would also air on Animax, although 3 years after Locomotions shutdown, and in the case for Evangelion, it got a new spanish dub.
The non-anime shows produced by MTV Networks and broadcast on Locomotion like South Park, Ren and Stimpy and Æon Flux were picked and shown on a weekend animation block by MTV Latin America, but in November 2006, this block was replaced with Animatosis a Sic Em Friday -alike block and all the shows with the exception of South Park were cancelled, and South Park continues to air as of present day, and recently now airs on a localized version of its home network. Bob and Margaret is shown as of January 2006 on the defunct-but-now-relaunched Latin American version of Adult Swim. The Critic broadcast in the Latin American version of HBO Family. Other shows, like Dr. Katz and Duckman hasnt been shown again on Latin America since the Locomotion shutdown.
5. List of anime titles aired by Locomotion
- Candidate for Goddess
- Lupin III - also known as Cliffhanger - Latinamerica only
- Gasaraki - Latinamerica only
- Serial Experiments Lain
- Petshop of Horrors
- Burn Up Excess
- Alexander Senki
- If I See You in my Dreams
- Eat-Man 98
- Silent Mobius
- Blue Seed
- Oh! Super Milk-Chan
- Cyber Team in Akihabara
- Boogiepop Phantom
- Soul Hunter
- Red Baron - Latinamerica only
- Neon Genesis Evangelion
- Gene Shaft
- Those Who Hunt Elves 1 y 2 - Latinamerica only
- Earth Girl Arjuna
- Saber Marionette J
- Lets Dance With Papa
- Bubblegum Crisis Tokyo 2040 - Latinamerica only
- Ranma ½ - Iberia only
- The Adventures of Mini Goddess
- Nightwalker - The Midnight Detective
- Saber Marionette J to X
- Cowboy Bebop - Latinamerica only
6. List of OVAs
- If I see you in my Dreams
- Ninja Resurrection
- Blue Submarine No. 6 Aonorokugo
- Burn Up W
- Saber Marionette R
- Tenamonya Voyagers
- Welcome to Pia Carrot!! 2 DX
- Agent Aika
- Virgin Fleet
- City Hunter: Bay City Wars
- Oh! My Goddess
- Gunsmith Cats
- City Hunter: Million Dollar Conspiracy
- Yakumo Tatsu
- Suikoden Demon Century
- Birdy the Mighty
- Sakura Mail
- Labyrinth of Flames
- Saber Marionette J Again
- Sukeban Deka
- Dirty Pair: Flight 005 Conspiracy
- Compiler Festa
- Power Dolls
7. List of non-anime shows aired by Locomotion
- Home to Rent - Latinamerica only
- Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist
- Robin - By Magnus Carlsson
- Crapston Villas
- South Park
- Rex the Runt
- Captain Star - Latinamerica only
- The Maxx - Latinamerica only
- Pond Life
- Journey to Infinity - Iberia only
- Duckman - Latinamerica only
- Æon Flux - Latinamerica only
- The Head - Latinamerica only
- Ren and Stimpy - Latinamerica only
- Gary and Mike
- Stressed Eric
- The Critic - Latinamerica only
- Bob and Margaret
8. List of animated films
- Wallace and Gromit: A Close Shave
- City Hunter: Bay City Wars
- Juego de niños
- City Hunter: Million Dollar Conspiracy
- Alexander Senki
- City Hunter: Magnum with Love and Fate
- Phantom 2040
- Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade
- Wallace and Gromit: A Grand Day Out
- Glassy Ocean
- Flatworld and The Making of Flatworld
- Ghost in the Shell
- The Super Dimension Fortress Macross: Do You Remember Love?
- Wallace and Gromit: The Wrong Trousers
- Robert Creep
- La Vieille Dame et les Pigeons Old Lady and the Pigeons
- Vampiros en la Habana - Cuban animated film.
- Martian Successor Nadesico: The Prince of Darkness
- The Tale of Shim Chung - Korean animated film
- Rail of the Star
- Dirty Pair: Project Eden
- Fallen Angels
- Opera Imaginaire
The titles above belong mainly to British and American companies, most of them come from MTV Networks channels like MTV and Comedy Central and Channel 4 from Great Britain.
Locomotion also had an hour block called Locotomia where international experimental animations where aired.
The Wallace and Gromit movies and Flatworld were also aired along with other British animated short films.
9. List of titles Locomotion was intending to broadcast
List of titles Locomotion picked up the rights to air, but couldnt broadcast because of its closure. These titles eventually aired on Animax Latin America:
- Stratos 4
- Galaxy Angel
- Ran, The Samurai Girl
- Pita Ten
- .hack//Legend of the Twilight
- Wolfs Rain
- Di Gi Charat Nyo
10. List of titles short experimental animation
- Anna and Bella
- A Piece of Phantasmagoria
- The Sandman
- The Cat Came Back
- The Balance
- The Big Snit
- Prelude to Eden
- How Wings Are Attached to the Backs of Angels
- Alice in Plasmaland
- Lupo the Butcher
- Hen Hop
- Meat Love 1989
- Im Your Man
- La Leyenda de la Canoa Voladora
- Street of Crocodiles
- Arnold Escapes From Church
- Screen Play Takako and Naoki - By Barry Purves 1993
- Bobs Birthday
- Jolly Roger
- Lennarts Top Tips
- The Fly
- A Chairy Tale 1957
- Neighbours 1952
- Boogie Doodle
- The Stain
- Os Salteadores
- El Egoista
- Steel Life
- Noiseman Sound Insect
- Opus Dei - By Cecile Noldus
- Historia del Gato y la Luna
- Mad Doctors of Borneo
- Monkey Love
- At The Ends Of The Earth
- The Monk and the Fish
11. About Locomotions VJ and design projects
Locomotion was not only about adult animation and anime. On the last years of being on air, Locomotion seemed to be interest also in Graphic Design and techno music House and Lounge or Chill-Out.
Thanks to Locomotion, groups like Boeing and Miranda! began their career, today being recognized by MTV.
Locomotion had a 30 min. block, called Fracto, where they featured music and design experiments that could be considered as experimental animation.