Puppet Shows of the 90s: Eureeka’s Castle

Posted 5 months ago by Television

Eureeka's Castle

This month we’ll be showcasing some of the shows mentioned in our The 10 Greatest Puppet TV Shows of the 90s article. Have any memories or thoughts? Get in touch!

A few years ago I wrote a silly list post on a whim about my favorite puppet TV shows from the 90s. Lots of people find the site by looking for shows on that list, but one in particular brings in lots of curious people: Eureeka’s Castle. Eureek’s Castle was a great show that ran from 1989-1995, but for some reason Nickelodeon seems to have forgotten about it.

Many classic 90s Nickelodeon shows are now on Netflix, Hulu, and/or Amazon Prime, but where’s Eureeka’s Castle? What gives?

The Show

Eureeka’s Castle had a lot going for it from the start. For one, it was co-created by R. L. Stine, the creator of the popular Goosebumps series of books for which I had a ton. The designs of the puppets were great. The setting and story was cool. It’s no wonder it was a very popular show. I watched a lot of Nickelodeon as a kid, and this show is definitely one of the shows I think about the most. Especially because it’s not available on DVD or streaming. I think about it a lot, you guys.

Probably the most remembered part of the show is Magellan, the big adorable dragon. Magellan the dragon was voiced by Noel MacNeal, who is probably most known for voicing Bear in Bear in the Big Blue House, but we all know that Magellan is much cooler (and could surely win in a fight).

Other characters include Eureeka, Batly (who looks like a puppet/bat version of David Cross), and Bogge and Quagmire. The show was mainly live action with puppets, but it also had animated segments. No wonder I loved it so much. (Seriously, a puppet dragon? Sign me up)

There is an interesting article over at the AV Club where they interview RL Stine specifically about the show, and in the article he mentions how Barney was the downfall of Eureeka’s Castle:

And, of course, what happened was we had this wonderful show and had this amazing two-level puppet set that was just fabulous and these incredible puppets. The Magellan puppet took two people to operate. Noel [MacNeal] was inside and he had a fan and a TV monitor inside so he could see what he was doing, and there was someone else to work the tail. It was so complicated and they were just so lavish with their imagination when working things out.

Then Barney came along. This simple, stupid puppet, this purple, blobby thing and everyone loved it. We had this amazing masterpiece, this incredible set and these fabulous puppets and all these Henson-trained puppeteers and then there was this blobby purple thing bouncing around.

It sucks that something as simple as Barney could make something as awesome as Eureek’s Castle fail. Stupid Barney.

The Merchandise (or lack thereof)

I think one big thing that makes Eureeka’s Castle such a nostalgic and even mysterious memory from the 90s was the lack of merchandise. If the show had been licensed as much as the Ninja Turtles or Garfield, it would be a lot harder to forget about it. But, some toys from Pizza Hut and a few books and puzzles is about all you can find of the show, even on ebay. I love collecting kids books from the 80s and 90s, and I’m just waiting for the say I find one based on Eureeka’s Castle.

Eureeka’s Castle will always be one of the most nostalgic shows for me, and I hope sometime soon we get all the episodes on DVD or streaming, so that one day my kids can watch it with me.

 
  • http://crookedninja.com/ Cody Mix

    I enjoyed Eureeka’s Castle as well. I always watched it at my Grandmothers house (she had cable TV).

    Also thanks for reminding me why Pizza Hut used to be awesome. Sucks for kids now.

    • http://tophatsasquatch.com/ Tommy Day

      I remember always watching a ton of Nick at my Grandma’s too.

      • http://crookedninja.com/ Cody Mix

        Ha I guess that is how they reeled in the grandkids.

  • Ben Rollier

    Nice! Used to watch this show with my brothers. In fact, I was Batly for Halloween one year.

    And I’m totally with Cody on this one, Pizza Hut used to have some pretty awesome kids meal packs. We got this one a few times –> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M2nfjNBtNb4

    • http://tophatsasquatch.com/ Tommy Day

      I rarely ever got to go to Pizza Hut as a kid because my dad owned a pizza shop and didn’t let us eat elsewhere, but I always looked forward to going during Book It!

      • Ben Rollier

        Never a bad thing to have a pizza shop in the family though :)

        Totally still have my ‘Book It’ pin too

  • The Sewer Den

    Great write up! Eureeka’s Castle was one of those shows I only watched when I stayed home sick from school. I connect it with a lot of colds, headaches, and fevers.

    I also recently saw those Pizza Hut puppets at a yard sale for 25 cents each. I should’ve bought them for you!

  • http://reallyratherrandomguy.blogspot.com/ Really Rather Random Guy

    I really can’t believe this show doesn’t get shown more nostalgia love. The production values alone place it higher than a lot of its contemporaries.