'Yo Gabba Gabba!' Collects Celebrity Fans
So why are more and more adults jumping on the 'Gabba' bandwagon? Its roster of unassailably cool guest stars and A-list celebrity fans might have something to do with it.
Featuring recurring appearances by Devo member Mark Mothersbaugh and rapper Biz Markie are just the tip of the iceberg. 'Yo Gabba Gabba!' boasts guest spots by musicians like The Shins and Sean Kingston. Actors Jack Black and Elijah Wood have dropped by, and rumored guests for the upcoming season include "Weird Al" Yankovic and Weezer.
Even Brad Pitt is a 'Gabba' fan - while the 'Inglorious Basterds' star and arguable king of Hollywood has never appeared alongside DJ Lance Rock on Nickelodeon, he appeared as the 'Gabba' host on Halloween. Pitt went trick-or-treating with Angelina Jolie and their brood wearing Rock's trademark fuzzy hat and black glasses.
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Ben Clark, Nick Jr.
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And it's the star power that might fuel the show into continued success. Christian Jacobs, who created 'Yo Gabba Gabba!' with Scott Schultz, told the New York Times that Nickelodeon doesn't produce the show - it merely broadcasts material licensed from an outside studio. "Everyone we work with creatively at Nickelodeon is so super-into the show," he said. "But we're at a place in the business model where they're like, 'We don't own that show, so we don't necessarily want to push it.' "
Wildbrain, the studio that produces 'Yo Gabba Gabba!' with the Magic Store, insists that Nickelodeon has been amazing to work with, noting that season three of the show has a firm (though yet unreleased) air date in 2010. Wildbrain chief executive Michael Polis said of Nick, "They've got to focus on properties that they feel are going to provide them with the greatest return. We do our best to offer them the opportunity to work with us."
Issues of promotion aside, all can agree that the support of celebs - both as on-air guests and just plain fans - can only help the off-beat kids' show. The under-five set might not be familiar with the late night works of season two guest Andy Samberg, but while they're enjoying his Dancey Dance segment, adults are flocking to witness the novelty of their favorite stars goofing off on Nickelodeon. According to Nielsen, about a third of viewers are 18 and older.
And of course, you can't buy promotion like Brad Pitt's orange spandex Halloween costume. "We had no idea he was a fan of the show," said Polis, "but orange suits him."
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