The Toy Castle

TVO (ended 2003)


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The Toy Castle

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"Only at night When the stars shine so bright Does The Toy Castle start its day." Welcome to The Toy Castle guide at TV Tome. It was April 2003, and America desperately needed a boost. The country had lost too many people in too short a time (including Fred Rogers). Nothing on television looked good. Then relief came, as Detroit Public Television (DPTV) imported The Toy Castle from Canada. Here is its exquisite premise: Two children (the real-life daughter of the executive producer and son of the director) put their toys away before bed. Among the figurines in their collection are a Soldier, a Sailor, a Strongman, a Clown, a Goblin, a Ballerina, a China Doll and a Rag Doll. Only when the kids are asleep do these toys come to life. And they're not the only ones who have adventures. A few surprises crop up, such as a Mouse Family and sibling Frogs. Despite their 18th-century period wear, Frederick and Freda Frog are both funky siblings (as they used to say on another Detroit station 30 years earlier, plunk your magic twanger, Froggy!). There are always lessons to be learned in these seven-minute journeys to The Toy Castle. The Toy Castle originated in 2000 on Canada's worry-free Treehouse TV network, with provincial airings on TVO and SCN. All these networks would air three adventures in a 22-minute time period. When it came to America in April 2003, Detroit Public Television reformatted the stories slightly into 28-minute episodes (four stories to a half-hour).