Pinoy kids have new heroes in Jet and the Pet Rangers

KAPAMILYA DAY - Kane Errol Choa - The Philippine Star
Pinoy kids have new heroes in Jet and the Pet Rangers
iWant TFC’s original Philippine animated series Jet and the Pet Rangers

Parents can now help their young kids learn more about Filipino values, language and culture by streaming iWant TFC’s original Philippine animated series Jet and the Pet Rangers.

The seven-episode series available on ABS-CBN’s streaming service focuses on the adventures of a boy named Jet and his pets Liksi the dog, Tiyang Manok the hen and Gigi the goldfish. They transform into superheroes with the help of a magic star.

It is refreshing to have a local cartoon series with a setting and characters relatable to Filipino kids. Jet and the Pet Rangers stresses the importance of teamwork, empathy and respect. It also promotes problem-solving skills and encourages children to express themselves.

Jet and the Pet Rangers’ second episode shows the power of a mother’s unconditional love

In the maiden episode, the Tagalog series stressed the importance of maintaining good physical hygiene to stay healthy. In the story, the stench of a cat named Kenken, who has a fear of water and refuses to take a bath, created a scary monster. Using their special powers, Jet and his pet rangers had to defeat the monster and ultimately helped Kenken overcome his fear.

We recently had a chat with the creator of the series, Patrick Apura, and the writer, Raywin Tome, to tell us more about the series they created.

Jet and the Pet Ranger’s first episode teaches cleanliness and caring for others

What inspired you to create the series?

Patrick: “My wife Dwein and I had a newly-adopted Shi-Poo puppy. Taking care of a new pup can be hard work and it triggered two stories centered on adoption, belongingness and a new family. Pet Rangers became one of them.”

How did you create the stories?

Raywin: “Lumaki ako sa mga kwentong pambata. Mahilig akong magbasa ng iba’t ibang local storybook. Bilang storyteller, mahalaga ang pagkukwento para alalayan ang mga bata sa kung paano nila titignan at tatanggapin ang mundo. Ang inspiration namin sa series ay nanggaling sa maliliit na kwento na naranasan din naming habang lumalaki.”

How would you describe the characters?

Patrick: “We created Jet as a character that Pinoy kids can call their own and look up to as a hero. An obedient, cheerful kid that saves the day with his squad of adorable superhero pets. Liksi, an askal, acts as Jet’s best friend and bigger brother. Gigi is the baby of the gang. Jet carries her fishbowl often so she can tag along in their adventures. Tiyang acts as their guardian
whenever Jet’s mother Wanda is not around.”

Raywin: “Ang Jet and the Pet Rangers ay pagtatangka na lumikha ng cartoonized na mundo na sariling atin. Gawang Pinoy. May familiarity mula sa damit ng characters, sa kalyeng ginagalawan, sa tunog na naririnig hanggang sa values na napakapaloob sa kwento.”

In what ways does Jet personify today’s Filipino children?

Patrick: “Parents nowadays are very conscious now about raising their kids in an environment that will broaden their mental and emotional growth. Most kids nowadays understand the value of being well-mannered, respectful and empathetic to others. Pet Rangers encourage these core values — how that dynamic between the parent and the child can affect how they react to others around them.”

What values or lessons does the series promote or impart?

Raywin: “Marami po kaming values na ibinahagi sa kwento na dapat matutunan ng mga bata tulad ng pagmamalasakit, pagpapatawad, pagsunod sa magulang, kalinisan, katapatan, kabutihan, at higit sa lahat pagmamahal. Bawat suliranin na hinaharap ng bida ay nakatayo sa isang kabutihang asal na gusto naming ituro.”

What are the challenges in writing for a children’s animation series?

Raywin: “We have to be careful with the choice of words and thoughts that will be placed in a story. I believe that children can process information in their own ways. Challenging ang magkwento dahil isa itong responsibilidad na posibleng humubog sa kanilang kamalayan.”

What is the feedback from viewers?

Patrick: “They say the show’s quality looks identical to international productions, which is always good to hear. The best feedback comes from the parents and the kids themselves. One dad said how much his child loves the episodes and how proud he is to have our own cartoon that teaches Filipino sensibilities to young viewers. One kid mentioned how he loves the show so much because it teaches him how to speak Tagalog.”

Will there be a new season?

Patrick: “If there is a demand, I would definitely be happy to do it all over again!”

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