Liberty's Kids


Liberty's Kids

Infobox Television
bgcolour = yellow
show_name = Liberty's Kids


caption =
format = Animated Children's television series
runtime = 30 Minutes
creator = DiC Entertainment
starring = Reo Jones as Sarah
Chris Lundquist as James
Kathleen Barr as Henri
D. Kevin Williams as Moses
country = USA
network = PBS (2002-2004) The WB (2004-2006) The CW/My Network TV/Independent stations (2006-)History Channel (2008-)
first_aired = flagicon|USA September 2, 2002
last_aired = April 3, 2003
num_seasons =
num_episodes = 40
list_episodes =
website =
imdb_id =
tv_com_id =

"Liberty's Kids" is a 40-part animated television series produced by DiC Entertainment, originally broadcast on PBS Kids from September 2, 2002 to April 4, 2003. Then after cancellation, aired reruns until August 16, 2004. The show has since been syndicated by DiC to affiliates of smaller networks such as The CW and MyNetworkTV and some independent stations so that those stations can fulfill FCC educational and informational requirements.

Its premise is to teach its audience of 7 - 12-year-olds about the origins of the United States of America. Much like the CBS cartoon mini-series based on Peanuts; "This is America, Charlie Brown" years before, "Liberty's Kids" tells of young people in dramas surrounding the major events in the Revolutionary War days. Celebrity voices such as Walter Cronkite (as Benjamin Franklin), Sylvester Stallone (as Paul Revere), Ben Stiller (as Thomas Jefferson), Billy Crystal (as John Adams), Dustin Hoffman (as Benedict Arnold), and Arnold Schwarzenegger (as Baron von Steuben) lend credence to characters critical to the forming of a free country, from the Boston Tea Party to the Constitutional Convention.

Main Characters (Fictional Associates of Benjamin Franklin)

* Sarah Phillips (Reo Jones):A bright-eyed fifteen year old young woman from England, Sarah comes to the Thirteen Colonies in search of her father, Captain Samuel Phillips, who was last heard exploring the region of Ohio; upon her arrival, she is warmly welcomed by and lives as a guest of Benjamin Franklin. However, with the possibility of a war between the American colonists and the English mother country, she decides that she will become a reporter for Franklin's newspaper in order to offer a more balanced perspective to the press. Sarah believes firmly in power of words and equal rights for all, and is never afraid to speak her mind. Initially, while retaining some degree of respect for her American peers, she remains loyal to England. Later in the series, Sarah has a change of heart and realizes how much she has come to understand the people of the colonies and ends up supporting the Revolution. Some men know the way to her heart...and that is by having good manners (Nathan Hale and Udeny Wolf-Hutchinson are good examples), or men of extreme bravery, such as John Paul Jones, and her interaction Benedict Arnold (and her admiration of him). James usually shows annoyance and disgust, but is there to listen and comfort her when Arnold switches sides. Although Sarah gets very annoyed with James with his rude manners she sometimes shows admiration to him with the way he is heart and soul patriot and listens to her when she needs it.

* James Hiller (Chris Lundquist):A young man orphaned in childhood because of a lightning storm, fifteen-year-old James greatly admires Benjamin Franklin, whose invention of the lightning rod saved many from the same tragedy. Zealous, street-smart and impulsive, James pursues the revolution from a slightly one-sided perspective - something that prompts Sarah to counter his views. An apprentice in Franklin's Print Shop, James believes firmly in the American cause and will do almost anything to ensure that the people receive an honest view of what is happening. In the process, he also faces the less positive aspects of the political conflict that eventually forces his patriotic fervor into a new maturity. He highly values his friends, Sarah and Henri. He can be a little protective of Sarah while he attempts to keep Henri out of trouble, acting somewhat like an older brother figure to Henri. He is often laid back and is constantly reminded of his bad etiquette by Sarah, toward whom he sometimes, inadvertently, shows feelings of what might be "more than friendship."

* Henri Richard Maurice Dutoit LeFebrve (Kathleen Barr):A small, but comedic and energetic eight-year-old boy from France, Henri's parents died on the voyage to America due to disease and the ship's captain exploited Henri afterwards. James and Moses smuggled Henri off the ship and the boy found a home in Benjamin Franklin's workshop. While he speaks French fluently, Dr. Franklin has insisted that Henri learn to speak, read, and write in both English and French. Henri's small size has proved more than useful to Sarah and James, though he has a tendency to land himself in all sorts of trouble while not fully understanding the dangers of the war. His lookout on life is that of a "huge party for his benefit" and has been labeled a "magnet for trouble." Curious and fearless, the only thing Henri values more than his freedom is finding a family of his own. Near the end of the series Henri returns to his native France as the adopted son/ward of the Marquis de Lafayette, with whom he has developed a strong bond. Henri calls Lafayette "Gilbert", a name Lafayette wished to be called due to his personal friendship with Henri.

* Moses (D. Kevin Williams):Born in Africa, Moses was brought in chains to America as a slave. Because of his ingenuity, Moses learned to read, forge metal, and buy his freedom from his master, thus freeing himself from the slavery of the American south. He eventually moved to Philadelphia and found work at Dr. Franklin's Print Shop. His brother, Cato, had not been so fortunate and escaped, later joining the British troops as a soldier. He looks out for Dr. Franklin's young wards, especially Henri. Like Henri, he values his freedom more than anything. Iron-willed Moses will never allow anyone to strip him of his dignity, despite his or her feelings on race. By working at the Print Shop, Moses hopes to educate children of all colors in the ideals of America so that everyone may one day be free. At the end of the series, Moses leaves to set up a school for children of all races. He is also successful in finding his brother Cato, who went missing for three years after the war and with the help of one of Sarah's British friends, is able to escape to freedom in Canada.

Historical Characters Depicted

Continental Army, Navy, and American militia

* Ethan Allen
* George Rogers Clark (Norman Schwarzkopf)
* Margaret “Molly” Corbin
* Horatio Gates
* Nathanael Greene (John Michael Lee)
* Nathan Hale
* Alexander Hamilton
* John Paul Jones (Liam Neeson)
* Joseph Plumb Martin (Aaron Carter)
* Deborah Sampson aka Robert Shurtleff (Whoopi Goldberg)
* Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben (Prussian in Continental Army) (Arnold Schwarzenegger)
* George Washington

British Army & Navy

* John André
* John Burgoyne
* Henry Clinton
* Charles Cornwallis
* Thomas Gage
* Admiral Lord Richard Howe (Michael York)
* General William Howe
* Johann Rall (Hessian Officer in British service)

French officers

* Marquis de Lafayette (Ben Beck)
* Comte de Rochambeau

panish Army

* Bernardo de Galvez (Mario Kreutzberger as "Don Francisco")

Polish Volunteers

* Tadeusz Kościuszko

Native Americans

* Joseph Brant
* Cornstalk

Turncoats

* Benedict Arnold (Dustin Hoffman)
* Edward Bancroft

American Family members

* Abigail Adams (Annette Bening)
* Peggy Shippen (Maria Shriver)

American politicians

* John Adams (Billy Crystal)
* Samuel Adams (Samuel L. Jackson)
* Benjamin Franklin (Walter Cronkite)
* John Hancock
* Patrick Henry (Michael Douglas)
* John Jay
* Thomas Jefferson (Ben Stiller)
* Richard Henry Lee
* James Madison (Warren Buffett)
* Caesar Rodney
* Edward Rutledge

British politicians

* Lord North

Other Historical Figures

* Elizabeth Freeman aka Mum Bett (Yolanda King)
** Little Bett
* King George III (Charles Shaughnessy)
* James Armistead
* Edward Jenner
* Sybil Ludington (Kayla Hinkle)
* Thomas Paine
* Paul Revere (Sylvester Stallone)
* William Dawes
* Benjamin West
* Phillis Wheatley

Theme

The opening theme to Liberty's Kids, 'Through My Own Eyes' is performed by Aaron Carter, who also voices Joseph Plumb Martin, and Kayla Hinkle, a country singer who voices Sybil Ludington.

Episodes

The following are the Liberty's Kids episodes, with links to relevant historial articles.

# The Boston Tea Party
# Intolerable Acts
# United We Stand
# Liberty or Death
# Midnight Ride
# The Shot Heard Round the World
# Green Mountain Boys
# The Second Continental Congress
# Bunker Hill
# Postmaster General Franklin
# Washington Takes Command
# Common Sense
# The First Fourth of July
# "New York, New York"
# The Turtle
# One Life to Lose
# Captain Molly
# American Crisis
# Across the Delaware
# American in Paris
# Sybil Ludington
# Lafayette Arrives
# The Hessians Are Coming
# Valley Forge
# Allies at Last
# Honor and Compromise
# The New Frontier
# Not Yet Begun to Fight
# The Great Galvez
# In Praise of Ben
# Bostonians
# Benedict Arnold
# Conflict in the South
# Deborah Samson
# James Armistead
# Yorktown
# Born Free and Equal
# The Man Who Wouldn't Be King
# Going Home
# We the People

DVD Release

On October 14th 2008, Shout! Factory will release "Liberty's Kids: The Complete Series", featuring all 40 episodes of the series, on DVD in Region 1 for the very first time.

External links

* [http://www.libertyskids.com/ Liberty's Kids (official website)]
* [http://www.kewlcartoons.com/ Liberty's Kids (Streaming Episodes)]
* [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0337550/ Liberty's Kids at the Internet Movie Database]


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