Much of Epoch’s industry-wide reputation has been built around its outstanding Series work for broadcast TV. Epoch has produced more then 80 half hours of high quality TV animation for the US market in a wide variety of styles.
“CAPTAIN SIMIAN AND THE SPACE MONKEYS”
In 1995, Epoch, along with L.A. based “Toon-Us-In Animation”, produced 26 episodes of the animated "Captain Simian and the Space Monkeys" series for Hallmark Entertainment. Produced on a modest budget, the series boasted Disney/Warner quality production values and Epoch's unique "American anime" direction and design.
Created by Gordon Bressack, a key writer on "Pinky and the Brain", "Space Monkeys" was an SF, action adventure comedy that often transcended the simplistic clichés common to the usual "toy driven" animated series. With witty, intelligent scripts, and solid design and animation, "Space Monkeys" developed a fiercely loyal audience ranging in age from six year olds to adults in their fifties. An audience that tuned in regularly to follow the adventures of the long suffering, NASA chimpanzee, Captain Simian, and his mismatched crew of primate spacemen (and woman) as they explored the galaxy in their tricked out spaceship—The Primate Avenger.
To produce a series with the highest quality production and design, Joe assembled an all-star design team of directors and designers and storyboard artists including director’s Brad Rader and David Schwartz, designer’s Brad Coombs, Harry Warner, Gregg Davidson, Sung Woo Hong, Mike Smith, Mac Spada and Young Yoon Gi, and storyboard artist’s John Fox, Vincent Edwards, Jennifer Graves, Dave Chylstek, Dave Simmons, Mike Hedrick, Adam Van Wyk, Tom Nelson, David Bullock, Lyndon Ruddy, Mike Docherty, Young Yoon Gi, Robert Souza, Keith Tucker, Chuck Droost and Graham Morris (animation timing). Many of Epoch’s storyboard team have gone on to become directors in their own right.
An all star voice cast lent their talents to the series, including “Babylon 5’s” Jerry Doyle, “Star Trek: The Next Generation’s” Michael Dorn, comedian’s Dom Irrera and Karen Maruyama, “Fresh Prince’s” James Avery, and the classic Bad Boy of genre cinema—Malcolm McDowell.
Epoch and Toon-Us-In provided all preproduction in L.A., including layout. Animation, ink and paint and camera was provided by Sun Min Image Pictures and Jireh Animation, two Seoul-based studios that would continue on as long-term partners with Epoch. Post house, Vitello Productions provided strong post-production services.
The series ran for four years on American and International TV.
“MUMMIES ALIVE” and “TEX AVERY THEATER”
In 1997 Epoch provided all the preproduction design and storyboard services on 14 episodes of “Mummies Alive”, an action adventure comedy produced by DIC Entertainment and Ivan Reitman. In 1998, Epoch again provided preproduction design and storyboard for DIC on six episodes of their wacky comedy series, “Tex Avery Theater”.
“ROBOCOP : ALPHACOMMANDO”
In 1998, Epoch did extensive development for MGN animation on their “Robocop: Alpha Commando” series and provided the preproduction, storyboard, and design on several episodes of the series. Longtime Epoch animation partner’s, Sun Min Image Pictures and Jireh Productions, provided the overseas animation.
That same year Epoch did the storyboard, design and direction for two episodes of Film Roman’s “Blues Brothers” series.
IIn late 1998, Epoch merged for two years with the Bohbot Kids Network (BKN) where Joe Pearson served as the Network’s Creative Director and the Epoch staff served as the heart of the fledgling Network's creative animation team.
While at BKN, Joe and the Epoch team produced the forty episode animated science fiction series—"Roswell Conspiracies: Aliens, Myths and Legends" for American and European TV. Written for an audience of both kids and adults, “Roswell Conspiracies” was originally intended for an hour long broadcast time slot on late Saturday afternoons. When that broadcast opportunity closed, the show was revamped to run in half hour installments in an early morning time slot, but still kept its more mature storyline.
The saga of a top secret government agency, the Alliance, and their relentless, clandestine war against hidden alien tribes living on the Earth, “Roswell Conspiracies carried its story arc across the entire 40 episode series, starting small and gradually growing into an epic, six part finale. On a parallel track, the Series followed the story of bounty hunter and reluctant Alliance agent, Nick Logan, as he struggled to uncover the mystery behind his missing father and ultimately, the deeper conspiracy inside the Alliance— revealed in the last episodic arc.
Produced in an edgy “American anime” style, all 40 episodes of Roswell were produced from beginning to end in less then 14 months and boasted very strong production values for a modest budget. This quality level was achieved by using the tried and tested Epoch animation and design team and production system as the core of the pre-production unit at BKN. Elliott Animation in Toronto provided additional design and storyboard services. Brad Rader and Tom Tataranowitz were the principle directors. Dan Faucett, Chuck Patten, George Elliot and Joe Pearson also directed episodes.
Korean animation houses, Sun Min Image Pictures and Jireh Animation, provided top quality overseas layout through animation and camera on a very difficult show and schedule. Vitello Productions once again provided all Post services.