The Friday, January 23rd launch of the Wolverine and the X-Men animated series provided the Nicktoons Network with its highest rated original series premiere ever among the target demos of kids from 6-11.  Nicktoons presented two back-to-back episodes and the second half-hour show did even better than the first.  Compared with the same time period a year ago, the first half-hour was up 133% among kids 6-11 and 175% among boys 6-11.  The second half-hour episode garnered ratings increases of 200% among kids and 183% for boys 6-11.


The debut episodes also did well with “tweens” (9-14).  The first half-hour brought in an estimated 70,000, while the second episode was watched by an estimated 134,000 tweens, with boys accounting for 89,000 of the total.


The 26-episode Wolverine and the X-Men animated series, which was produced in India by First Serve International, has received some excellent notices including a rave in the LA Times where Mary McNamara observed: “It's good to see a cartoon that remembers what cartoons are supposed to do. Zap, slime and blow things up. It's almost heartwarming to see feature characters who speak in short declarative sentences that you can usually predict two beats beforehand, and who generally save the world.”


Lionsgate has acquired the rights to the Wolverine and the X-Men on DVD and plans to release the first disc later this year (see “Lionsgate Gets Wolverine and the X-Men DVDs”).  If the cartoon continues to do well on Nicktoons, it should also help spur sales of Hasbro’s Marvel-based toys.  With the release of X-Men Origins: Wolverine this spring (see “Best in Shows: 2009, Pt.I”), Hasbro has placed a special emphasis on Wolvie and his mutant pals (and adversaries).