Friday, January 10, 2020

Mega Man: Fully Charged Season 2 (Probably) Isn't Happening


It's been a solid eight month's since the season finale of Mega Man: Fully Charged aired in the United States. And within that time, there's been no word from WildBrain (formerly DHX Media) on the prospects of a second season. Yes; they did (and continue) to pump out bite-sized "toy play" episodes on YouTube after the light's dimmed on season 1... but that's not the continuation fans have been waiting for.

No announcements, no press releases, nothing has been said about Mega Man: Fully Charged season 2. Speaking under the condition of anonymity with Rockman Corner, two former members of the Fully Charged production team have come forward to explain why.


"If Season 2 started up right after Season 1, I would probably still be working at DHX on it," recalled one of our sources. "The initial plan was to roll everyone over onto Season 2 right after Season 1 had finished."

According to our sources, members of the Mega Man: Fully Charged crew were told from the beginning that a second season was "gonna happen." In fact, pre-production on season 2 began roughly halfway into the development of season 1.

"Everyone with a pencil and pen hit the ground running," said our second source. "Everyone was excited to keep the ball rolling. We had so many ideas."

"The scripts for all of S2 were written and concept art for new characters was being made," added our first source. "There was a postmortem meeting with production, leads, and senior animators and they were telling us that if there were certain 'issues' or comments that we thought would be beneficial to production going forward into S2, we were to message our leads for them to bring up and take into consideration of working on the next season."

While crew members sent their messages up the proverbial ladder, project leaders were already in the midst of plotting out various structural changes for season 2, such as "getting rid of the previz/layout in favor of giving the animation teams that task while giving them more time to work on each episode."



Pre-production on season 2 was off to a relatively good start. Spirits were high and everyone was excited to roll right on over to season 2. But the thing was... season 2 wasn't actually greenlit. Not officially.

"We wanted to know if we'll be getting our contracts extended or what," recounted our source. "Our producer said that they were very transparent on the whole process of what was going on and would let us know about the process of getting S2 greenlit. DHX was in talks with Dentsu about funding S2, and while nothing had been signed or agreed upon yet, they were working on it."

Another couple months go by and the Fully Charged crew are starting to feel antsy. In the words of our source, "It's never fun to be in a position of not knowing if you'll have a job in a couple of months."

"Our producer let us know that they were at a bit of a standstill, but S2 was "99% greenlit" they just need a couple final papers signed, " continued our source. "At this point they mentioned that by time they [DHX] get this all under wraps that there may be a month or two break for the crew, since they need to go through the process of storyboarding and modelling the needed assets for production. Our producer said they wanted to keep as many of us on to continue working on the show so if we had concerns to let them know and they would do their best to accommodate."

As production on season 1 began to wind down, season 2 was still "99% greenlit." And that antsy feeling everyone had? It was replaced by true anxiety.

"We're all kinda sweating, because the longer they take to confirm S2, the longer it will be before production can begin, the bigger the break we have to take in between contracts, more time we're not being paid if we choose to continue working on Mega Man," said one of our sources.

And just before the wait became absolutely unbearable, the Fully Charged crew were finally told what the hold-up was.



"What was taking the 'greenlight' so long to happen was because of the way DHX wanted to structure the second season," said one of our sources. "Season 2 was going to consist of 26 episodes running for 11 minutes each. It was going to be a smaller season with a focus on quality over quantity. Dentsu had the second season budgeted out and were ready to fund it... but DHX wanted to do something a little different with that budget. That didn't sit well with Dentsu."

As explained by our sources, Dentsu Entertainment (co-producer and distributor of Fully Charged) wanted to air season 1 and season 2 back-to-back in Japan as one long, 78 episode show. Dentsu specifically budgeted Fully Charged for that very purpose. However, DHX was adamant that they wanted to "put the budget of the last 4 or 6 episodes of season 2 into creating online content to promote the show."

Instead of a full 26 episode second season, DHX wanted a smaller season with the freedom and budget to create a series of 2-3 minute short skits featuring "a day in the life of a Robot Master" or fun little music videos. These skits would have been published exclusively through WildBrain's YouTube channels, which make up a large part of their bushiness.

"Dentsu wasn't having any of that," said our source. "They wanted all of the money to go towards a full 26 episodes or they weren't going to fund their part of the show."

For months DHX and Dentsu went back and forth trying to come to an agreement. And there was no middle ground here either, I'm told. It was all or nothing.

"Without Dentsu funding their half of the show, we really had nowhere to go," laments our second source. At this point in our conversation I had to ask, "what was stopping DHX from funding the show themselves?" My source directed me to a news story that broke on September 23rd, 2019: DHX Rebrands as WildBrain".

"DHX weren't in a great place financially," they added. "The had a change in hands from the top, cut a lot of fat out, and ultimately rebranded as 'WildBrain' in response. DHX, at that time, literally could not afford to fund Fully Charged themselves. Without Dentsu's support, MMFC was dead. It is dead."

While the disparity between DHX and Dentsu played a large role in season 2's fate, another factor also played its part: the Cartoon Network ratings.

"If I recall correctly," began a source, "there was even a time where one of our heads of DHX ended up flying to California to Cartoon Network to ask 'Yo, what the hell is going on?'"

"That's true," added the other. "We were all pretty peeved at the lack of promotion from Cartoon Network's side, not to mention the horrible 6:30AM, SUNDAY MORNING, timeslot. It was ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. Our audience literally wasn't there."



And that, my friends, is where our story ends. While neither one of my sources are confident Fully Charged will return for a second season, the groundwork for it does exist. If and when season 2 will be realized, it will likely fall into the hands of an entirely different production team.

"I think most of us have moved on," said one of our sources. "We've either been transferred to work on different programs at WildBrain (long-term commitment) or, like some of my friends, have jumped ship to different jobs and studios entirely."

While the book may be closed on season 2 for now, it is worth noting that, at the time of the writing, there is some interest from within WildBrain to leverage season 1 a bit longer. That could mean the show will (eventually) appear on other platforms and different markets.

If you enjoyed Mega Man: Fully Charged and want to see more, there are a few things you can do that might (and that's a strong might) help rejuvenate interest between WildBrain and Dentsu:

  1. Legally watch episodes through your cable provider on-demand service, the Cartoon Network App, or Cartoon Network online.
  2. Buy the toys
  3. Subscribe to the official Mega Man Fully Charged YouTube channel
  4. Watch the new toy play episodes
  5. Write to WildBrain on Twitter and Facebook

A big thank you to our sources for providing this information. We wish everyone at Team Full Charged the best of luck in their future endeavors!

47 comments:

  1. This is a real bummer. My 2yr old daughter loved this show! It was her introduction to Mega Man and I was hoping more would be coming. Now I'm just hoping that eventually there's a way to actually buy the season digitally somewhere so I don't have to rely on Cartoon Network keeping it around

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  2. good riddance to bad rubbish. Nobody asked for this kind of weird adaptation.

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    1. You don't like this show and i really don't either, but some peoples do. My nephew enjoyed it, my brother thinks it's too different from the Mega Man, but it's fine on it's own. Not saying that they're a generality, of course, what i'm saying is that the world of entertainement does'nt have to be tailor-made for me, nor for you.

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    2. I loved It and to start off, It is not garbage if anything you're garbage for saying that.

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  3. Wow, I didn't know they were planning to air in Japan. It is such a wasted opportunity. I personally didn't care for it, but I've seen many people enjoy and that's what matters. This just shows how much CN has fallen. Also interesting to see some behind the scene stories on tv shows and production.

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    1. "but I've seen many people enjoy and that's what matters"

      Is it, though? I'm Extroverted Feeling and I still don't think this is something that should continue. Like lootboxes or Pokémon GO, this cartoon suffers both intangible quality issues and too poor of a reception by the general public that just aren't what the franchise needs right now.

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    2. >Is it, though?

      .....yes? I've seen people actually getting interested in the games through this, and creating content like fanart OCs and discussions. Of course there are people who hate it, but it's hard to tell if they actually represent "the general public" or some vocal mninority/people who are mocking for the lolz without knowing what it is.

      I used to be a hater who only watched a clip or two before making fun whenever it was brought up. But after seeing people both young and older talk about how they had a good time and enjoying the toys, I realized it was silly to be worked up over something that isn't even aimed at me. I personally despise the RS cartoon but people still enjoy it in one way or another. I only play and consume Classic stuff but my introduction to Megaman was the BN anime.

      Companies can't make something that everyone will love. And they can't keep relying on the same audience for profit. They need new people. To attract them you need to cater to them. But there is a limit to what they can change. The beauty of the Megaman franchise is that you can take a totally new direction without interfering with the existing ones. The different Megaman series we have were based on trying out new things, new directions and attracting new audiences...right? And if it is profitable Capcom and other companies will realize Megaman as a whole is still worth investing into.

      Yeah ok I lost track of what I was writing.

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  4. I respect that MoA's guys were trying to get Mega Man back in the modern era, but this vision just wasn't how to do it. EXE/NT Warrior is an example of how it can be done well. The ball is in Capcom's court, obviously, but taking the "Man" out of the Robot Masters (also not using that old naming system would help) or giving the EXE-equivalent update to Mega Man X would be a good path.

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  5. "We were all pretty peeved at the lack of promotion from Cartoon Network's side, not to mention the horrible 6:30AM, SUNDAY MORNING, timeslot. It was ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. Our audience literally wasn't there."

    Many people called it. Cartoon Network WAS a bad choice. There really wasn't much promotion. Maybe going to Netflix like Sonic Boom would give better results? Having an official webpage like the MegaMan NT Warrior anime would help too, with everything related like episode summaries (with a link to CN's videos), main characters, the toyline, etc.

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    1. Yep. I remember when it was first announced that it was going to be on Cartoon Network.

      All of the comments were about how it was a bad choice that was only going to end poorly for the show.

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    2. "Maybe going to Netflix like Sonic Boom would give better results?"

      Sonic Boom continues on Netflix? :o

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    3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonic_Boom_(TV_series)

      It's been dead since 2017. It's not coming back.

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  6. Fully Charged was garbage. It was like a poorer man's version of a poor man's version of Ben 10.

    The animation was worse than a Disney Jr. production, the jokes weren't funny, the action was lame (they're robots ffs, show some violence), the ongoing plot has little coherency, and Mega Mini is an embarrassment, as unnecessary and unlikable as a 70s cartoon sidekick like Snarf or Bat-Mite. Also, the 8-bit retro aesthetic you see in certain scenes squanders its potential and just has the most basic Craig Of The Creek-style "video-gamey" stuff dreamt up by a TV executive. Oh, but they throw in some graphics from the original NES games, creating an uncanny mix of the two.

    This show has nothing going for it. Yes, the music is well-done (they actually pull music from the games, wow, what a concept) and yes, you can tell the production team are fans since they sneak in little in-jokes and obscure references nobody but fans would get, but that's not good enough. Good riddance, reboot it in another 10 years or so.

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    1. considering how humanised the robots (especially the main character) are in MM, they still aren't likely to get away with violence in a children cartoon. Fight could still have more panache, but it would be more about choreographing them better.

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    2. Geez, pull the stick out, Corporal Disgruntled.

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    3. Yes, the one from the 90s was much better and more accurate to what Megaman should be. This show was odd and had nothing to do with what Megaman is. Weird he was like a human going to school. Made no sense.

      All I really care about are sequel games in the main timeline anyways, like an X9, ZX3, Legends 3, or other series they may invented after ZX but before Legends.

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    4. I have to admit, it's sort of funny to me how I've seen people bash the shit out of the Ruby-Spears series but those same people are fans of the new series. At least I can admit the Ruby-Spears series is not very good!

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    5. My guess is they took the school bit from the Dreamwave comics, where Megs was known as Rocky among the students. The staff of this cartoon did say they looked at a lot of the pre-existing media, but I still believe they have no excuse to choose the direction they did.

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    6. @Tiny Proto well I can say Fully Charged had a more interesting idea and plot than the Ruby Spears show and the first season's second is more watchable than the Ruby Spears show.

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    7. @BBally81

      While I can't argue for whether one show is more 'watchable' than the other, I can't think of a single idea surrounding the story of Fully Charged that hasn't been done to death in other shows before.

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  7. You know what would be getting season 2? An animated Megaman cartoon based on the Archie comic book series or a Megaman X cartoon.

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    1. Considering that the issue here is with the Dentsu wanting a different format for the episode, the problem would be the same with a different show.

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    2. Not if they were of been made for Cartoon Network too.

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  8. I thought the death knell for this would be insufficient toys sales, as had happened to other shows in the past.
    Wanting to save parts of the budget to advertise the show would be a good choice, i think, (because they certainly can't count on Cartoon Network for that)
    They're in a rather bad place here, i they do makes season 2 like Dentsu wants it, they would still lack the exposure needed to reach their audience Anyway.

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    1. What's astonishing is that if they just stuck with the original designs, they would have had a decent enough template to kitbash a bunch of robot masters for cheap. A majority of the masters have a standard set of body types with only a few exceptions requiring entirely unique molds like Charge Man or Pump Man. Instead, they went for these ridiculous redesigns that simply didn't appeal to long time Mega Man fans and the only demographic for them would be fans of the show. A show no one watched. The show is just a bunch of wasted opportunities.

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  9. I was'nt too fond of this show to begin with (only watched a few episodes, though, i'd need to see the rest to get a proper opinion of the serie as whole), but that's a bad new for thoses who liked it. Kinda sad for the peoples who worked on it, too.

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  10. Did seasons one ends on a cliffhanger? i haven't watched it yet and i'd like to know if it at least finishes on a conclusive note.

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    1. It had a conclusion to the seasons main arc but left room for a potential second season

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  11. oh gee that's too bad

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  12. What's even worse is that the "Mega Man Battle Network" anime (NT Warrior) is the only Mega Man television thing released in most of Europe. Why?

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  13. I can't help but wonder, if we'd be having better luck in the future. I know they were basically strong armed into doing this story versus going closer to the games, but man I feel kinda bad. No one deserves to lose their job, because some company feels doing stupid things with the budget was a good plan. They actually could've improved the story and made it more linear or even had things corrected. (Personally I never liked the "Megaman has to keep things a secret from Dr. Light" because... Why would Dr. Light make Aki then to be able to transform and everything if he wasn't meant to be a fighting robot?) It definitely needed polish and it definitely suffered from having a lot of restrictions put on it. If they had been allowed to do the game based story they wanted versus being told "NOPE, no touchy, make your own canon" then they would've likely had a better storyline versus having to basically recreate it all from the ground up.

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    1. Well for what it's worth it sounds like most of the crew moved on to other projects. Hope nobody lost out too, but at least it sounds like they were able to find work elsewhere.

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  14. I watched all 52 episodes on Hulu with Live TV & they were fantastic. I hope that Season 1 & 2 gets transferred to Netflix or Hulu Plus.

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  15. I think the show's timeslot was the biggest problem of all. No one was going to be awake at that hour; not even the most energetic of young children are up that early. Honestly, anything that airs in the "early waking hours", otherwise known as the death slots, is a sign that either the show is going away (because it had been on in a primetime slot and wasn't generating enough viewer ratings) or the network didn't really have much faith in it to begin with, which seems to be the case here. This same happened with dubbed anime like Lupin III Part 2, Case Closed, .hack//Roots, and even Yu Yu Hakusho when it entered its final arc.

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  16. This is kinda DHX's fault... If they had agreed to 26 episodes of 11 minutes long then they would be working on Season 2 now... But they wanted shorter episodes and that's totally stupid. It was already bad that Season 1 was 11 minute long episodes when it should of been 21 minutes long... They did the same thing as Sonic Boom... Hell even had the same time slot as Sonic Boom and that series only lasted 2 seasons then cancelled... DHX should of learned from those mistakes not do the same thing...

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  17. I feel more bad for the people who worked on the show than I do for the actual show itself.

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  18. "That's unfortunate."
    -Said no one ever.

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  19. Damn shame. Feels like wasted time and money over nothing. Hopefully the next Mega Man show gets made in Japan and this time an anime for once. :/

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    1. Not unlike Archie's Mega Man comic. 60+ issues of Sonic crossovers and Ian Flynn's OC's.

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    2. even though compared to the sonic archie comics which until the pre genesis wave arcs felt like a bad satam fanfiction that didnt work the games world well at all and showed that alongside mostly being one note its original and satam characters made it a dramatic mess that really showed why sonic games can be mature but should never ever include stuff like the comics,the megaman ones at least after getting better pacing did expand on concepts and added ideas only seen in supplemental material,like my favorite being the tying together the various alien elements like shadowman, ra moon, the star droids and even an origin for duo and the evil energy. the original characters also didnt hog the spotlight from other characters unlike sonics and while i do have problems with it like including the satam,deadly six and having xander payne save the day in worlds unite and the kinda pointless filler dawn of x that in hindsight feels like a pilot for an x archie comic series, i think i did a good job expanding the series to newcomers to try the games compared to fully charged which feels like that mighty number 9 april fools day cartoon that got switched to megaman esque when they saw the game bomb.

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  20. Oh, no...
    What a loss...
    I... am... beside... myself... with... grief...
    Boo... hoo... Boo... hoo...

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    1. And it's that type of bad attitude why the franchise is in mess it's in.

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    2. i do agree that being immature and insensitive to the shows likely cancellation really gives a bad view of fans but this show getting cancelled really is not going to harm the franchise as a whole and there is still the zero/zx collection and other attention the series is getting so an overall lukewarm adaption of megaman that was alright as a cgi cartoon but kinda pointless being related to megaman being shelved isnt a mortal wound to the blue bombers reputation

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  21. i beg you reconsider i need more mega man now!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  22. They could just do a Rock Man X anime in Japan and simulcast it for success. Even today kids would flip out over the characters in X, you wouldn't even need to change anything.

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