The loveable Care Bears today is a household name, with its creation back in 1981 till today where it has recently finished its most recent show Care Bears: Unlock the Magic as of 2021. But did you know that Care Bears over the years have had many reiterations, revisions and even movies and tv shows? Well that’s what we’re here to talk about!
Originally created in 1981 by Elena Kucharik, Care Bears where intended to be used for greeting cards. But then in 1983 they where made into loveable plush teddy bears and featured in The Care Bears in the Land Without Feelings (a animated television special) and The Care Bears Battle the Freeze Machine (the second animated television special).
The brand continued to grow from there and just 1 more year they had their first television series aptly named Care Bears which ran from 1985 to 1988!
Stepping away from the plush teddy bears and tv series for a second, Care Bears throughout its time have had multiple movies! Kicking things of in 1985, The Care Bears Movie was the first of 9 movies in total with the most recent being Care Bears: Share Bear Shines.
In chronological order the movies are:
- The Care Bears Movie, 1985
- Care Bears Movie II: A New Generation, 1986
- The Care Bears Adventure in Wonderland, 1987
- Care Bears: Journey to Joke-a-lot, 2004
- The Care Bears’ Big Wish Movie, 2005
- Care Bears: Oopsy Does it! 2007
- Care Bears: To the Rescue, 2010
- Care Bears: The Giving Festival, 2010
- Care Bears: Share Bear Shines, 2010
As you can see the success of Care Bears has created lovely films for your kids to watch! Perfect for those long car rides.
Care Bears over the years have also had relaunches, in which new characters have been introduced, some have been changed alongside new merchandise, movies, tv series and more! Lets have a look at some of the important relaunches which have helped Care Bears achieve the success they have today.
Following from the Care Bears Rights changing hands in 1999, just 3 years later Care Bears was relaunched as part of the Care Bears 20th Anniversary celebration! This included a series of new plush toys and films for fans to enjoy!
During this, from the 10 original bears Birthday Bear was replaced with Share Bear, and some of the characters designs where changed. For example, Share Bear’s belly symbol was changed from a milkshake with two straws to two lollipops crossed, and Champ Bear’s colour was changed from a tan yellow to blue. Aside from this there where only minor changes.
It was announced that to go along with the franchise’s 25th anniversary celebrations, the Care Bears would be given a fresh new look! This was shown through a new tv series called Care Bears: Adventures in Care-a-lot as well as a feature length movie as mentioned earlier called Care Bears: Oopsy Does it! During this 15 of the 39 Bears were shown in this new style, and 5 where chosen to be the focus of the franchise, these where: Cheer Bear, Funshine Bear, Grumpy Bear, Share bear, and Oopsy Bear who was also a completely new addition.
This relaunch came from the announcement of the new televisions series called Care Bears: Unlock the Magic. Which was the first time the setting was set outside Care-a-lot. It featured 5 Bears as the main focus: Grumpy, Cheer, Share, Funshine and Good Luck also featuring a new creatures called whiffles. Dibble, one of the whiffles, also serves as the teams newest companion!
And in the following year Basic Fun! Released a new line of Care Bear toys, in the UK, USA and Canada.
Books, Games and Merchandise!
Due to the popularity of Care Bears over the years there has been plenty of merchandise for fans to sink their teeth into! From the obvious such as toys and animations, to Books such as Meet the Care Bear Cousins, there is no shortage for those looking to own a part of the wonderful brand!
A handful of games have been made for the PC, and notably the interactive toy, care Bears Share a Story, introduced in 2005 the Care Bears head, mouth and eyes would move as the cartridge plays fairytales such as Jack and the Beanstalk and The Three Little Pigs!
Other merchandise such as cell phone covers, stickers, school supplies, and clothing are all out there, and of course, Socks! Why not Check out Roy’s Boys Official Care Bears Socks for the Kids and Mummy!
You can grab your pair here!
We hope you have enjoyed our little dive into the brilliant history of Care Bears and how far they have come!