The Cartoon Network has announced that it has acquired broadcasting rights for the hugely popular (in Japan) anime series, Detective Conan.  Detective Conan has consistently posted the top TV ratings for anime series in Japan over the past year -- and remains a top-rated show in spite of the fact that the series has now passed 350 episodes.  Funimation, which owns the U.S. rights to Detective Conan (see 'Funimation Acquires Detective Conan'), is currently producing the U.S. adaptation. 


The Cartoon Network also announced that the popular Adult Swim block would expand to six nights a week in April by adding a Saturday night block starting on April 17.


With the previous announcement of Witch Hunter Robin, Wolf's Rain, and Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex (see 'Adult Swim Announces 3 New Anime Series for 2004'), and the recent revelation that Gundam Seed would appear on the Cartoon Network (see 'Gundam Seed Anime on the Cartoon Network'), American anime fans have cause to rejoice that these five superb series will receive stateside TV exposure -- and retailers, who are looking for trends, can expect the influence of anime on American pop culture to continue its strong, steady growth in 2004. 


In addition to the anime series mentioned above, the Cartoon Network will also air the Animatrix, quite possibly the best-selling anime DVD of 2003.