- Ace Lightning
show_name = Ace Lightning
Childrens, Action, Comedy
runtime = 30 minutes
Jim Corston Rick Siggelkow
Thomas Wansey Marc Minardi
opentheme = "There's A Hero"
by Four Square
country = UK
first_aired = 2002
last_aired = 2004 (2005 in the UK)
num_episodes = 39 (2 seasons)
list_episodes = List of Ace Lightning episodes
imdb_id = 0309125
"Ace Lightning" is a children's television show co-produced by the
BBCand Alliance Atlantis, which has been broadcast in the United States of Americaas well as in the UKand Australia. [Cite web|url=http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/bbcworldwide/worldwidestories/pressreleases/2003/02_february/ace_ps2.shtml|title=Fight the Fear on PS2 with Ace Lightning|accessdate=2008-01-01|publisher=BBC Worldwide Press Release|year=2003] The show was filmed in Canada, but the program was set in America. It ran for two seasons, and spawned several books, including a yearbook for the year 2003, an activity book and a companion to the series. A computer game based upon the show was released in 2002.
Most of the programme was live-action, although the heroes and villains from the video game were created using
CGI. The primary focus of the series is the power of friendship, as well as the battle between good and evil.
"Ace Lightning" follows the life of Mark Hollander, a boy who has recently moved to a town called Conestoga Hills, in America, with his parents. While Mark is playing the computer game "Ace Lightning and the Carnival of Doom," on a stormy night, a lightning bolt strikes the
satellite dishon Mark's house, bringing the characters from the game to life. Ace Lightning, the hero of the game, enlists Mark to help him find the pieces of the Amulet of Zoarwhich will allow him to send Lord Fear and his minions back to prison in the Sixth Dimension. The game soon turns into a series of dangerous events; ultimately leading to the moment Mark fears the most, notably Game Over.
A new foe named Kilobyte arrives in season two. He plots to destroy Ace and conquer the world with Lord Fear and minions as his army. Ace receives unstable human emotions from Lady Illusion, corrupting his original programming. Ace suspects Kilobyte is controlled by someone, but is not sure who or what is the cause.
:Mark Hollander::An English boy living in America. Following the emergence of the characters from his video game into the real world, Mark becomes Ace's sidekick, and has to deal with typical teen problems in addition to fighting evil.
:Chuck Mugel::Chuck is Mark's best friend and president of the town's Ace Lightning fan club, as well as being a computer expert. He is rather overweight in the first series, and is called "Upchuck" by the school bullies because he vomits easily.
:Samantha Thompson::A popular
cheerleaderat Mark's school. She is Mark's first girlfriend, but breaks up with him after she begins to suspect that is hiding something from her.
:Kat Adams::A self-possessed and independent girl who moves to Conestoga Hills at the beginning of the second series, and ultimately becomes Mark's third girlfriend. In the last episode of the second series, Kat finds out about Ace and the other characters.
:Wayne Fisgus::The main bully of Mark's school. Wayne often picks on Chuck because of his weight and intelligence. He is very aggressive toward anyone whom he takes a dislike to, and has the tendency to behave quite arrogantly.
:Brett Ramirez::Samantha's former boyfriend. Brett is a skateboarder, and becomes good friends with Mark.
:Heather Hoffs::Heather is a popular fashionista and Samantha's best friend. During the first series, she was attracted to Mark, and becomes his second girlfriend after Samantha breaks up with him. When Mark breaks up with her, she takes an intense dislike to him, and behaves in an rudely toward him during the second series.
:Ashley Hollander::Mark's cousin. Ashley is one of the few people who knows about Ace and the Evil Gang.
: Horace Cheseborough::A science teacher and a frequent incidental victim of the battles between Ace and the Evil Gang. He believes that Mark and the video game characters are aliens, a belief which ultimately causes him to become paranoid and unstable.
:Duff Kent::The carnival's original owner. Duff becomes a slave to the villains when Lord Fear arrives. He is good friends with the Rat and can give good advice to Lord Fear.
:Simon and Fiona Hollander::Mark's cheerful parents. Fiona loves garden gnomes,
kippersand everything British, while Simon is into the fancy gadgets of America, like leafblowers. Simon is often a source of comic relief, but he proves himself to be competent when the chips are down, such as when he takes charge during a video villain attack.
:Rick, The Master Programmer::The creator of Ace Lightning. He was mocked by his fellow programmers after creating a program which he claimed could bring the characters of video games to life. He intended for Lord Fear and the other villains to conquer the world so that his "genius" would be know. When Lord Fear is defeated at the end of the first series, Rick creates Kilobyte, in the hope that he will defeat Ace. Kilobyte eventually betrays Rick and traps him in the computer game.
Lightning Knightsare the heroes of the video game. Their duty is to protect the Amulet of Zoar from evil. If they suffer damage or overtax their powers, they must absorb electricity ("power up") to recover. When they are weakened in such a fashion, their images flicker with static. If they take too much damage without recovering, they are transported back into the game.
:Ace Lightning::The heroic superhero from Mark's game and the leader of the Lightning Knights. Ace can fly, has superhuman strength and speed and can fire electricity from the wrist cannons he wears. He is brave and reliable, but also clumsy, often breaking objects in Mark's house. Ace's mission is to collect the missing pieces of the Amulet of Zoar before Lord Fear, and so gain the power to return him to imprisonment in the Sixth Dimension. According to the Ace Lightning Yrarbook, Ace is 32 years old.
:Sparx::Feisty, energetic and somewhat arrogant, Sparx is a red-haired young woman who is always eager for a battle. Despite her hot-headed and impatient personality, she has on several occasions shown herself to be strongly protective of those weaker than her. Sparx has no superpowers of her own but is an expert in gymnastics and martial arts. She fights with the Sword of Jacob, a double edged
swordwhich discharges pink lightning bolts. She also rides a hovercraft known as the Lightning Flash.
:Random Virus::Random is an old friend of Ace. According to the Ace Lightning Yearbook, Random is 35 years old. He was badly injured in an accident several years prior to the events of the show, and was given robotic body parts, including caterpillar tracks instead of legs and a giant claw instead of a right hand. These prosthetic parts give him great strength and make him almost indestructible. However, the accident also damaged his mind, causing him to alternate randomly between the personality of a loyal Lightning Knight and a merciless villain. He therefore proves a liablitiy to whichever side he attempts to join.
The villains inhabit the Kent Brothers Carnival, because of its similarity to the Carnival of Doom which is their headquarters in the game. Unlike the Lightning Knights, if they are defeated they are not sent into the game but to an attraction or object at the carnival until they restore their energy and reappear. On the official Ace Lightning site they were called "the Evil Gang" but are not given a group name in the show.
Lord Fear::The primary antagonist of show. Lord Fear is a living skeletonwho is the most feared villain in the Sixth Dimension and ruler of the Carnival of Doom. He has the ability to extend his limbs and bind his enemies, suffocating them with a boa constrictor-like grip. Lord Fear has a deep hatred for Ace Lightning for multiple reasons, namely for Ace accidentally crippling him, and for imprisoning him in the Sixth Dimension. Lord Fear has a developed a limp in his right leg thanks to his crippling.
:Kilobyte::Kilobyte debuts in the second season, usurping leadership of the existing villains from Lord Fear. He appears roughly human but has four
octopus-like tentacles on his back which have great strength and can drain the energy from other game characters. Kilobyte has the power to upgrade other game characters, giving them new or improved powers. He morphs into the carnival's ferris wheel.
Lady Illusion::Lady Illusion is Lord Fear's mistress and partner in crime. She resembles an elf, though her power is to assume the form of any person or creature she chooses. Lady Illusion's other power is to create crystal balls that can either burst and release various gases to imprison her opponents.
:Staff Head::Staff Head is a frog-like creature on a stick, serving as Lord Fear's walking stick, weapon and best friend. He has the ability to fire energy blasts from the orb he carries. He can also change his stiff, wooden body into a snake-like slithering body.
:Dirty Rat::Lord Fear's sneaky
spy. He resembles a flying ratdressed like a clown. He has enhanced senses and can create bombs similar to Lady Illusion. He morphs into a gargoyle outside the Haunted House, but it was very rare for him to be blasted back into it by the heroes.
:Anvil::Anvil is a humanoid
rhinoceroswith an anvilattached to his right arm instead of a hand. He is immensely strong and formidable, but is equally stupid. He morphs into the carnival's Test-Your-Strength game.
:Pigface::Pigface is a grotesque pig-like creature with a ravenous appetite. He is able to eat anything, from science beakers to golf clubs. He morphs into a trashcan.
jester, he is able to roll into a spiked ball. Googler was summoned by Lord Fear from White Hot Oblivion, where he was previously imprisoned by Ace. He morphs into a puppet theater inside the Haunted House.
:Rotgut::Rotgut is an undead
cowboyzombie who prefers to be called the "Walking Dead". He has the power to possess other people and his limbs often fall off. He morphs into the carnival's mini-golf course.
:Fred::Originally a normal wasp, Kilobyte allowed Fred to sting him, causing Fred to mutate into a giant, monstrous insect. Fred serves as Kilobyte's mount and is the only thing to which Kilobyte shows kindness.
:Video Game Characters::The CGI characters believe the game is the Sixth Dimension, except Ace who discovers it is really a video game. Chuck, Rick and Mr. Chesebrough have all become 3D characters after being sucked into the game.
The first season was produced in 2002. The season introduced the main characters throughout the 26 episodes. Episode 8 was a
Halloweenspecial and Episode 18 was a semi- April Fools Dayspecial. Episode 20 was a clip showepisode featuring the character Duff Kent seeing a psychiatristabout his life with the evils. The characters obtained pieces of the Amulet of Zoar, which they used to summon reinforcements from the Sixth Dimension.
Originally, the characters were going to originate from a
comic book, but it was altered in terms of popularity to a video game.When broadcast in America, the episodes were shown out of order, which sometimes resulted in severe continuity errors. For instance, "Tunnel of Love" was shown before "Once Upon a Hero." Random Virus would show up as an established character the day before he would be established.
*The Game Begins (1/2) - Pilot episode.
*The Trap is Set (2/2)
*The Substitute (1/2)
*Face the Music (2/2)
*There's No Place like Home - Ashley's debut.
*Opposite Attraction - Ace and Lady Illusion's relationship begins.
*Only Human - Googler debuts.
*Behind the Mask - Halloween Special.
*Once Upon a Hero - Random Virus' debut.
*Tunnel of Love
*Nobody's Hero (1/2) - Sparx's debut.
*Ace's Wild (2/2)
*The Field Trip
*Not Alone at Home
*Unidentified Flying Superhero - Sparx's destruction
*A Friend in Need
*The Last Laugh - April Fool's Special.
*Daffy Duff - Clip Show.
*The Unlikely Hero
*The Not So Great Outdoors - Sparx's return
*The Biggest Fan - Jessica's debut.
*The Play's the Thing (1/3)
*The Rat Turns (2/3)
*Game Over (3/3) - Finale
Infobox Military Conflict
conflict =Battle for the Amulet of Zoar
place =Conestoga Hills,
United States of America; Sixth Dimension
result =Defeat of the Carnival of Doom
status =Battle incomplete.
combatant2 =The Carnival of Doom
combatant3 =The Fortress of Solitude
commander1 =Ace Lightning
commander2 =Lord Fear, Kilobyte, Dirty Rat (temporarily)
commander3 =The Master Programmer
strength1 =Five Lightning Knights and their allies
strength2 =Nine superhuman villains
strength3 =A powerful computer mainframe
casualties1 =Lady Illusion (possibly survived)
casualties2 =Anvil, Pigface, Googler, Rotgut (sent back to the Sixth Dimension)
casualties3 =None, Master Programmer trapped within the Sixth Dimension
The second series was broadcast in most countries in 2004, but it aired in the United Kingdom during the summer of 2005 for unknown reasons. This season was not aired in the United States due to the poor reception of the first season. The graphics were greatly improved, and several of the characters including Staff Head and Pigface were changed to look more like the animals they resembled. Kilobyte, Rotgut, Kat Adams and Rick the Master Programmer made their debut in this season. Chuck also met the Lightning Knights, and Mark got his own weapon, allowing him to battle the villains. There were only 13 episodes with one overall storyline.
*Upgrades (1/2) - Debuts of Kat, Rotgut and the Master Programmer (silhouette only).
*The Game Begins (2/2) - Anvil returns.
*Uninvited Guest - Dirty Rat returns, Rick debuts, and Kilobyte debuts as an unseen character.
*A Secret Life - Kilobyte properly debuts.
*Welcome to the Nightmare - Fred debuts.
*The Search For Sparx - Sparx returns.
*Bound to Fail (1/2) - The Doom Wagon debuts.
*Formula For Disaster (2/2) - Pigface returns.
*Choices - Samantha and Googler return.
*Rotgut Rides Again
*Putting It Together (1/3) - Clip Show, the Master Programmer's identity is revealed.
*Kilobyte Bites Back (2/3) - Kilobyte starts eliminating the Lightning Knights before he makes his move.
*The Master Plan (3/3) - Finale.
Season 3 was in the making but was canceled due to low popularity and insufficient revenue from merchandise.
Known information includes Ace would have gone into the game to rescue Lady Illusion, possibly freeing Kilobyte and Rick as well. Lord Fear, Staff Head and Dirty Rat would live together with Mr. Cheseborough for a while. Lord Fear would use the teacher's knowledge and technology to find a way to release Anvil, Pigface, Googler and Rotgut from the game without the use of the Amulet. Also a new villain named Candy Floss would have been introduced, likely replacing Lady Illusion as Lord Fear's female companion.
It is unknown whether or not the season shall be revived for creation.
* The show was developed by
BBCand AAC Kids, with Rick Siggelkow as executive producer and creator of the show, and Jim Corston as head writer.
* Rick Siggelkow revealed in an interview that Mark Hollander was based on Peter Parker, and Ace being based on
Supermanand other superheroes.
* Each script took about a month to write, with filming and post-production taking several months.
* The first season took a year and a half to make.
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