July 02, 2022

DA BOOM CREW

 NOTE: This version of the intro is lacking the show's title and creator credits.

DA BOOM CREW
(The WB, September 11-October 2, 2004)
 
Berliner Film Companie Productions, Jambalaya Studios

 

 

MAIN CAST:
Jordan Francis – Justin
Melanie Tonello – Rickie
Mitchell Eisner – Jubei
Walter Borden – Zorch
Morris Day – Headlok
Jerome Benton – Jerome
 
 
*Note: Depending on where you look, the characters’ names undergo a variety of spellings. The ones used here were taken from storyboards posted by Dan Root.
 
            Four orphan friends known as Da Boom Crew created their own video game, spread across a number of floppy disks. One day while playing it, a mysterious “supernatural” portal (dubbed as “the Big Boom”) opened up above the orphanage and sucked them into an intergalactic universe that was exactly like their game. Now they’re on a mission to retrieve their disks—or “Boom Carts”, which have somehow been infused with a special kind of power that gave them a golden glow and could affect the world around them—before they’re collected by the evil Zorch (Walter Borden) and used to extinguish all light in the universe. Upon finding a Boom Cart, Da Crew would insert it into a kind of containment device to keep its powers at bay.

Da Crew at the orphanage: Nate, Justin, Jubei and Rickie.


            Da Boom Crew was comprised of Justin (Jordan Francis), the leader who wielded two blasters similar to the ones they used for their game; Nate (Jascha Washington), Justin’s younger brother who carried a toy light-up sword (based on the lightsabers from Star Wars) and tended to be a bit headstrong and brash; Jubei (Mitchell Eisner), a sharpshooter with his laser shotgun and extreme sports fanatic, always seen riding some kind of wheeled or hover conveyance and performing stunts with them; and Rickie (Melanie Tonello), a mechanical genius responsible for developing and maintaining their tech, tended to use overly large and complex words to say the simplest thing, and was a proficient fighter with her collapsible bo staff. At the start of their series, their heroics earned them some upgrades from a race of beings known as the Yodiggities: a real energy sword for Nate; a hoverboard for Jubei (the Back to the Future kind, not the real-world kind); a robot toolbox named Dent for Rickie; and a new ship for Justin to captain, called “The Whip” (although Nate served as the pilot). It was never revealed where Da Crew got their original equipment or ship.

The evil Zorch.


            Zorch’s primary minion was Headlok (Morris Day, lead singer of The Time, whom the character resembled), an egotist that enjoyed being evil while struggling with an inferiority complex and physical insecurities (his helmet was to make his head appear bigger). Although he served Zorch, Headlok had his own ambitions of conquering the galaxy for himself. His right-hand man was Jerome (The Time bandmate Jerome Benton), who was his best friend as well as his lackey. While loyal to Zorch, he was loyal to Headlok more and functioned as his hype man. Other villains included Headlok’s sister Etra (Raven Dauda), a trickster with shapeshifting abilities that favored manipulation over her brother’s direct approach; Dr. Namdra (Tony Rosato), a mad scientist that proved too unstable for Zorch and was thus fired, leaving him to create his own army to go after Boom Carts; The Crimson Raider (Robert Tinkler), Zorch’s most notorious assassin who was headstrong and cocky; and The Grargon Gang, a group of four delinquents that seemed to be mirror opposites of Da Boom Crew.

Headlok and Jerome.


            The series was created and produced by Bruce W. Smith, John Patrick White and Stiles White from a concept by fellow animator Serge Michaels that blended Star Wars with Boyz-N-The-Hood. The story began in medias res, leaving the explanation to how the kids got where they are to the intro. The theme was composed by Bud’da using a sample of the opening beat of Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir”, and was performed by Bud’da with Francis and Washington. Bud’da also provided some of the score along with Mona Davis Music. Both Whites served as writers along with David Gerrold, Brian Swenlin, Sib Ventress and John Marsh. Smith worked on the original character designs, with additional designs by Maurice Gardner, Thorsten Kiecker, Jasen Strong, Millicent Henson, Matthias Hirsch and Devin Crane. Animation duties were handled by Koko Enterprises, Inc. (which became the mining company CNK International). A recurring element was for Da Boom Crew’s title logo to appear randomly somewhere in the background several times an episode.

A Boom Cart being contained by Da Crew.


            Da Boom Crew debuted on The WB as part of the Kids’ WB programming block on September 11, 2004. After the first four episodes aired The WB pulled the show from their line-up, replacing it with episodes of Pok√©mon and Yu-Gi-Oh! The remaining episodes wouldn’t air in North America until it ended up streaming on Tubi TV and Amazon Prime Video with the Ameba add-on. The entire series did air, however, when Cartoon Network UK picked it up for broadcast in 2005. While a popular reason for the abrupt removal seems to be that the show performed abysmally in the ratings, a press-release from Cartoon Network UK seemed to contradict that; calling it one of Kids’ WB’s biggest debuts in its timeslot. This would be the final series produced under Smith’s Jambalaya Studios banner once the more well-known and popular The Proud Family ended its run the following year.
 
 
EPISODE GUIDE:
“Droppin’ Da Bomb” (9/11/04) – Da Crew encounters a stranded Blurp whose fears are manifested into reality by a Boom Cart.
 
“Statue of Limitations” (9/18/04) – Da Crew sets out to help a planet become fertile again by making the dangerous trek to a mystical statue.
 
“Junk Planet” (9/25/04) – The Whip crashes onto a junk planet where Da Crew must team-up with a garbage man to take on a legendary junk-eating worm.
 
“Frogday Afternoon” (10/2/04) – Da Crew ends up caught in the middle of a tribal conflict that lands them in jail.
 
“Wanted!” (??/??/05 UK) – At a space station Da Crew is mistaken for the notorious Gragon Gang.
 
“Boom vs. Doom” (??/??/05 UK) – A mad scientist captures Da Crew in order to use the Boom Carts to power his weapons of mass destruction.
 
“Planet of Lost Lives” (??/??/05 UK) – A friend from the orphanage is found on a creepy planet where some scary things are going on.  
 
“Baby Boom” (??/??/05 UK) – Da Crew are captured and forced to work in Headlok’s mine while trying to reunite an alien baby with its mother.
 
“Ice Ice Planet” (??/??/05 UK) – Da Crew accidentally snuffs out a primitive society’s only source of heat and sets out to reignite it.
 
“The Crimson Raider” (??/??/05 UK) – Blurp joins Da Crew on a search of an ocean planet for a Boom Cart where they encounter Zorch’s top assassin.
 
“The Legendary Meemawzaza” (??/??/05 UK) – A legendary warrior makes Da Crew work hard to reclaim a Boom Cart, giving Headlok and Etra a chance to put a crimp in their plans.
 
“The Hour of the Clipse: Part 1” (??/??/05 UK) – As the Yodiggities prepare to celebrate Freedom Day, Da Crew sets out after the last cart and encounters a group of alien orphans.
 
“The Hour of the Clipse: Part 2” (??/??/05 UK) – Da Crew must infiltrate Zorch’s ship to retrieve the stolen Boom Carts.

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