It might come together a shock come anyone who’s ever before explored the Christian subculture of America, yet at one time, there yes, really never, ever, ever, ever, ever before was a present like VeggieTales.
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That time was prior to December 21, 1993, the day when “Where’s God when I’m S-Scared?” an initial appeared top top VHS in Christian bookstores. On that day, not even VeggieTales’ creator Phil Vischer can imagine how the collection would go on to influence kids and also families because that the next quarter of a century.
With the 25-year anniversary the VeggieTales keep going this month, below are 25 amazing things you may not have actually known about the show that redefined a genre and affected millions of Christians.
1. Chocolate Tales?
The kitchen respond to where VeggieTales take away place could easily have resembled the fictional world of liquid Land. When developing his lead character, Vischer started by experimenting with a talking candy bar.
His wife, however, told that moms would certainly be mad if the display caused youngsters to autumn in love v candy. He moved on come a cucumber, and also the show forever took a an ext health-conscious turn.
2. Look at Ma, No Hands
Vischer wasn’t necessarily partial come vegetables. He just needed character models that were basic to animate in the early days the computer-generated graphics.
Since tomatoes and gourds didn’t need animating arms, legs, or hair like human or pet characters would, the display waltzed right into the produce aisle.
3. An imaginative Role Models
Vischer’s two heroes growing up to be Walt Disney and also Jim Henson. Their influence in storytelling, humor, and creativity deserve to be watched throughout the series.
4. Playing through the huge Boys
Vischer temporarily exceeded his heroes in at the very least one way. In his autobiography, Vischer says his company large Idea was at once the largest animation studio in between the coasts—overshadowing Disney, Pixar, and DreamWorks.
5. Crazy (Early) Success
According come Vischer, VeggieTales ended up being the most successful direct-to-video collection in history. Between 1996 and 1999, huge Idea flourished revenue by 3,300% indigenous $1.3 million come $44 million.
But together you’ll learn additional down, the success would certainly later finish with the company in bankruptcy.
6. A endowment Trove of covert Content
Many VeggieTales DVDs had mystery Easter egg hidden approximately various menu icons—including one whereby the French Peas attempt to do a bootleg copy of the show’s an initial feature movie, Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie.
Here’s a list of few of the hidden features you missed. Currently you desire to an episode those old DVDs, don’t you?
7. Digital Veggies
VeggieTales released in 1993, the exact same year together Jurassic Park and when production began on the very first Toy Story film. Both the the latter movies played an important role in introducing audiences to the capabilities of computer animation.
In a human being where Christian media is typically criticized because that being behind the times, VeggieTales to be ahead the its day in exploring brand-new technology because that kids’ programing.
8. Not as Much scriptures As friend Remember
VeggiesTales is typically described a show where vegetables tell scriptures stories to kids. However in actuality, only a small percentage the the videos had retold holy bible stories.
Instead, the overwhelming bulk of shows affiliated spoofs of popular literary story or well-known pop society stories such as Indiana Jones (“Minnesota Cuke”) or lord of the ring (“Lord the the Beans”).
Each episode did introduce children to a scriptures verse that supported the episode’s theme.
9. Old testament Emphasis
Of the VeggieTales shows that featured actual story from Scripture, the canonical representation skewed heavily in favor of the Old Testament.
The malfunction goes: Genesis (featured in 3 videos); Exodus (2); Joshua (1); Judges (1); Esther (1); 1 Samuel (1); Daniel (2); Jonah (1); Luke (1).
Turns out, yes a reason why the brand-new Testament was supplied so sparingly…
10. Mom’s Rules
Vischer’s mom, who has actually a Ph.D. In Christian Education, offered him some initial rules about creating VeggieTales. Castle included: 1) You will certainly not portray Jesus as a vegetable, and 2) shot not to indicate that vegetables have the right to have redemptive relationships through God.
The first rule is why there are practically no VeggieTales episodes focused on new Testament stories.
The second rule is why Bob speaks in the 2nd person as soon as he end episodes with, “Always remember: God do you (not us) special and also He loves you an extremely much.”
11. Streamed Vegetables
VeggieTales’ legacy includes nearly 50 direct-to-home videos and two full-length feature films, however in 2015, the brand relocated to Netflix. The streaming large has due to the fact that created 2 original series based ~ above the characters.
No plans for future direct-to-home VeggieTales videos have actually been announced. If this really marks the end for the series’ traditional method of distribution, 25 years makes for a really generous expiration day for vegetables on VHS and also DVD.
12. Huge Idea = big Problems
Predating the move to Netflix, the veggies found themselves in hot water because that a variety of reasons that had a bad growth strategy, draining cash flow, heavy debt, hefty legitimate fees, and also a lost lawsuit.
In September 2003, the company filed because that bankruptcy and was sold to classic Media LLC, the same firm that owns Lassie, Rocky & Bullwinkle, and also Casper the familiar Ghost.
13. VeggieTales autumn the Bible, God
After the bankruptcy sale, classic Media, a secular company, do a address NBC to carry VeggieTales cartoons right into their Saturday morning lineup.
But NBC required the mirrors be gotten rid of of Scripture passages and particular references come God in order to, “reach as large an audience as feasible with these optimistic messages, when being careful not come advocate any kind of one religious point the view.”
Bob’s signature signoff line, “God made friend special and He loves you really much,” was changed with, “Thanks because that coming end to mine house, kids. Check out you following week.”
14. Vischer’s Regret
It have the right to be suggested that VeggieTales episodes were driven more by biblical values than they were by yes, really biblical stories.
Vischer lamented this in an interview. “When I lost VeggieTales and large Idea, among my very first responses when my head finally stopped spinning, was, ‘Wait a minute, did I simply spend 10 year persuading youngsters to act Christianly without teaching them Christianity?” he said.
“I can’t simply tell kids to behave like Christians. I need to teach castle the tenants that the faith.”
This led straight to one of Vischer’s following projects…
15. Getting back to the Bible
After leaving large Idea, Vischer created Buck Denver Asks, “What’s In the Bible?”—a 13-episode routine to lead youngsters through the Bible’s cool narrative indigenous Genesis to Revelation.
The program supplies puppets, animation, songs, and also voice acting—skills the were perfected throughout Vischer’s time functioning on VeggieTales.
In his new series, Vischer was ultimately able to explore brand-new Testament stories that were unavailable for VeggieTales because of his promise to his mom to no depict the Messiah together a vegetable.
16. Hope he is Waterproof
Qwerty, the animated computer system who introduced kids to featured bible verses, acquired his name from the very first six letter on a standard computer system keyboard.
His very first design was based on an IBM 386. In 2010, Qwerty upgraded to an apple iMac v a voice chip and also webcam.
Who keeps a desktop computer on your kitchen respond to anyway?
17. No Onions, Please
Mr. Lunt, the eyeless, mustached character v a strange love for cheeseburgers, is regularly mistaken together an onion by pan of the show.
Vischer has gone ~ above record, however, identify the wisecracking collection antagonist as a decorate gourd.
18. Say, no That…?
VeggieTales consisted of some notable voice-acting guests such as Amy Grant, Wayne Brady, Jaci Velasquez, Duck Commander’s Si Robertson, Matthew West, Kellie Pickler, and also Terry Crews
19. Monkeying approximately with silly Songs
Andrew Peterson, whose track “Is the Worthy?” came to be a favorite in church solutions this previous Easter, wrote few of the stunner Songs because that VeggieTales v his friend Randall Goodgame.
A favourite is the Silly song “Monkey” which helps Bob discover the difference in between monkeys and also apes—well, kind of.
20. Many Personalities
Vischer voiced almost half of the VeggieTales characters including Bob the Tomato, Archibald Asparagus, Mr. Lunt, Pa Grape, Jimmy Gourd, Mr. Nezzer, and also Phillipe Pea.
Vischer phone call Bob his “inner Mr. Rogers” yet says Archibald is many like his genuine personality.
21. Because I’m Bat-Bob!
Before Larryboy, Vischer had planned to give Bob a superhero identity referred to as Bat-Bob.
Larry ultimately donned the cowl and also became a fan favorite—spawning a line of playthings and video games based on the suction-cup-wearing hero.
22. Tommy and Kooky
In his autobiography, Vischer claims if Veggietales had actually been a typical Christian show, Bob and also Larry would have actually been dubbed Tommy the Tomato and also Kooky Cucumber.
Vischer stated he no aiming to make a typical show and also wanted to avoid alliteration. The sought much more common names because that his key characters. Bob was called after Vischer’s stepdad, an electrician and—by Vischer’s estimate—a constant Joe.
23. 14 year in the Making
In a 1992 reel developed to lure potential distributors—a clip referred to as “VeggieTales Promo, take it 38”—Archibald Asparagus states that Bob and Larry want to do a Christian TV show.
VeggieTales was in reality released, however, together a residence video series for many of that existence. It wasn’t until 2006—14 years after the early stage promo was made—that an actual VeggieTales TV collection was created, fulfilling Bob’s lifelong dream.
24. The risks of life the Dream
The rise and fall of huge Idea caused Vischer to acknowledge that dreams—even dreams of set influence—can be a resource of idolatry.
After the bankruptcy, he claimed in one interview with Risen Magazine, “God teach me the I had actually made the work-related I was doing for Him much more important than my connection with Him. Ns was worshipping mine dream and also not my Creator.”
25. Vegetable Cannibalism
And lastly, in probably the most disturbing occasion to ever before happen in VeggieTales history, Larry’s hunger it s okay the ideal of him.
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In the very first episode that the Netflix series, VeggieTales in the City, Larry is served a sandwich that contains, friend guessed it, sliced tomatoes. Bob was unavailable for comment.