ABC hope for more Scorpion Island

Team Claw! Team Sting! Team Venom! TV Tonight talks to the ABC about the future of its popular kids adventure series.

421If there’s one show that this site keeps getting requests about it’s Escape from Scorpion Island, the ABC’s kids’ adventure series, which screened in 2008.

The show has built up quite a following, with plenty of internet fans hungry for more, and particularly keen for audition information. Australian and British fans are hungry to pit their skills against the dangers of its tropical setting. With surf, swamps, mountains, dunes and rivers, the challenges are a giant temptation to the adventurous. And that’s not to mention the fanmail that some of the previous contestants have had.

But after ABC co-produced the second and third seasons with the BBC, a many die-hard fans have been eager for more Scorpion Island.

Tim Brooke-Hunt, ABC’s Executive Director of Children’s Television, is also a big fan of the series -with good reason.

“I was thrilled, it was my first commission to go to air,” he told TV Tonight.

“The show originated in the UK with CBBC. We came in on their second year but they’re now lining up for the next series, and we will come in then.”

CBBC is the Children’s division of the BBC. It produced the first season in Brazil. The second and third seasons were filmed back to back by Freehand Productions (Top Gear Australia, Missing Persons Unit) in Queensland.

“CBBC was the lead broadcaster, let’s be honest,” he said. “It was created and made by a British company, and they put up the majority of the money. So we have to let CBBC lock in their commitment, and then we step in and negotiate around how many Australian kids (will participate), or whether it’s produced in Australia, and all those things.

“I love the brand. I think we need to keep refreshing the brand, and keep doing it. And I also think it’s a very healthy programme for kids to see.”

Certainly with its adventure and team-building skills the show is an astute mix of education and entertainment.

So while a fourth series isn’t yet guaranteed, the ABC is quietly optimistic it can renew the show in the near future.

“I would expect that we might announce it in a couple of months.”

10 Responses

  1. Makes me wonder if kirben has seen the series before commenting. This show had amazing production value, it looked fantastic and the kids were great characters who were allowed to be kids, it wasn’t over-produced so they bitched and whined about each other….imo creative and engaging kids tv.

  2. The show is very popular it seems that some people are not ready for the concept of children’s reality television.

    Despite what you think Kirben children’s reality television is quality children’s programming.

  3. Well… actually it does equal a large number of fans watching. Lots of our kids loved it and it was excellent for them to watch the kids battling it out with each other with such great spirit, teamwork and resilience.

    It might be ‘reality’ but there was nothing nasty or manipulative about it.

    And the ratings were very good. It is not surprising that the ABC want to do it again. Bring it on.

  4. We don’t need more reality TV series for kids, the ABC should be providing more new quality kids programming instead.

    As I said last time, kids trying to get on a TV, doesn’t equal a large amount of fans watching the series.

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