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LeVar Burton bringing back Reading Rainbow in app form

Posted: , by Michael H.

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LeVar Burton bringing back Reading Rainbow in app form
LeVar Burton has had an amazing acting career, bringing life to iconic characters in many works, but one of his jobs was far more important to him than others and that had been Reading Rainbow. Reading Rainbow was a PBS show that encouraged kids to read, and Burton hosted the show for 23 years, starting in 1983 and ending in 2006 when the show was cancelled. 

Burton has been looking for a way to bring back the show, first with a plan to provide webisodes, but that plan never came through. Now, it looks like Reading Rainbow 2.0 will be coming to mobile devices in app form. Or at least the reboot of the beloved program will begin in app form. The plan is to bring streaming classic episodes and DVDs after launching the app which will feature hundreds of books with a "Reading Rainbow-like" experience. 

There's no word on what exactly that will mean, when the apps will be available or what platforms it will come to, but having grown up on Reading Rainbow, we're pretty interested to see it make a comeback. 

source: Mashable

31 Comments
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posted on 06 Feb 2012, 17:20 5

1. LoneShaolin (Posts: 307; Member since: 14 Jan 2012)


Geordi LaForge + reading = EPIC!!!

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 17:34 3

2. speckledapple (Posts: 879; Member since: 29 Sep 2011)


I grew up on that show. Very awesome.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 18:08 5

3. Sniggly (Posts: 7182; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


I loved that show when I was a kid. I didn't get to watch it beyond the age of four though. Kid shows used to be so much better.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 19:54 1

7. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Aren't we a bit young to be pulling the "things were better back in my day" card?

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 20:01 3

9. -box- (Posts: 3878; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


Sadly, no.
I started realizing just how screwed up the following generation to me would be when I saw just how trippy Sesame Street had gotten. This was the mid-90s. I realized then that kids would never has as awesome a childhood as I did

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 22:06

14. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


That is absurd. Everything is better now, and will be better for the next generation. Our TV shows were absolute crap for the most part. Our toys could have easily killed us. And, what we called the Internet was nothing compared to what exists now. I would love to be a kid right now.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 22:43

15. vijaysivakula (Posts: 169; Member since: 17 Aug 2011)


Umm. Just a couple of questions. Just how many toys killed how many kids in those days and how many kids die now-a-days? You would love to be a kid right now but you would enjoy it only with the maturity of your current age of 20 / 30 / 40 years. Kids today are still lost, victimized and being conditioned.

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 10:46 1

22. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Kids today are no more worse for wear than ever. The only difference is we have 24 hour news cycles that put it all in your face. Kids are growing up in a globally connected world, sure there are things to be wary of, but kids today are no more bullied or victimized than ever. It's just better publicized now.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 23:00

17. axllebeer (Posts: 266; Member since: 05 Apr 2011)


Na. I don't recall being killed by my toys. But then I never had a Chucky doll lol. Sometimes you just have to unplug all the tech and just live.

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 10:47

23. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Okay, maybe lawn darts never killed anyone, but there are no toys that dangerous any more.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 23:18

18. Sniggly (Posts: 7182; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


"Everything is better now."

Recess.

Batman: The Animated Series.

Dexter's Lab.

Samurai Jack.

Justice League.

I rest my case. :D

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 10:45 1

21. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


The Last Airbender.
Adventure Time.
Regular Show.
Flapjack.
Star Wars Clone Wars.
Thundercats reboot.

Just because it isn't filled with nostalgia doesn't mean it isn't awesome.

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 13:25

27. Sniggly (Posts: 7182; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


I haven't watched any of those shows, but are you seriously going to tell me that they're all *better* than the shows I listed?

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 13:36

28. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


They don't all need to be better than everything else. Just a point of fact that as many good shows as you can name from the past, there are amazing shows being made right now.

That said, I'd certainly put Airbender above anything else on your list or mine (the cartoon of course, not the steaming pile that M. Night Shyamalan put out in theaters.)

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 13:48

29. Sniggly (Posts: 7182; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


I'll reserve judgment on Avatar until I actually watch any episodes, but I'm sure you can forgive my skepticism that anything could be better than Batman and the Justice League. :)

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 14:21

30. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


I fully understand, but trust me on this one. Avatar is one of the best series ever.

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 09:14

20. McLTE (Posts: 714; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


Michael, Do you have kids??

From a Gadget sense, yes kids have it awesome today, but it's not all rainbows and butteflies.. kids today are more tied to their electronics and less social and/or lack good social skills because of it.

They have to deal with issues of bullying and the fun "anonymous" mean stuff that they wouldn't have to when we were kids in the 70's and 80's.

A good example is a good friend's daughter received texts from so called friends calling her all sorts of nasty things.. just for fun! This would have never happened when we were kids.

Kids are forced to grow up much faster than 20 or 30 years ago... exposed to sex at a much earlier age through all media outlets

Also, things are so much more unsafe for kids. When I was young, we could hop on our bikes and take off for the day.. ride 5 miles up to the library if we wanted. We just had to be back by dinner/dark etc. I didn't have bad and irresponsible parents either, that's just the way things were.

Now, as a parent, I'm afraid to let my kids out of the neighborhood, and I live in a good area!

No, you can't things are better today in every regard. Not at all. Many things are better by far, but it's much much worse today in areas too.

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 11:07 1

24. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


"kids today are more tied to their electronics and less social and/or lack good social skills because of it." really? so all of the communicating that kids do with their friends with those electronics don't count for anything? When I grew up, I had a couple close friends and in my early teens the Internet finally came around. I was incredibly shy in real life, but the Internet allowed me to practice social skills and by the time I hit college, I was out of my shell. If I had Facebook in high school, I probably would have been far less shy because I would have had a much easier way to interact with people.

Bullying has existed forever. I was bullied plenty. Bullying is no more prevalent today than ever, it's just more widely publicized and visible. Just because kids couldn't use texts to degrade each other doesn't mean it didn't exist. And, luckily with texts, you have a written record of the bullying in order to take action rather than just a "he-said, she-said" that existed when we were kids.

"Kids are forced to grow up much faster..." No, not really. There is no reason why kids can't understand the world that they live in and still be kids. Parents have been saying the same things since we were kids, but it still doesn't make sense. People love sex, that's a fact of life. People can also be mean, petty, bigoted, and generally terrible. It's better that kids understand that and are prepared than going in blind. And, on the other side of it, people can also be kind, generous, and helpful. Yet every parent teaches their kids that all strangers are evil, and those lessons can impact a child throughout life. How is that helpful?

Things are actually far more safe for kids these days. Again it's a matter of visibility. Every crime statistic regarding kids is lower than it was when we were young. The only difference is that every crime is splashed in the media as much as possible. The world is safer, but we're more paranoid because we know more.

On the whole, it's a far better experience for kids with easier access to information, easier connections to their friends, quality entertainment, etc. Sure, there are new problems to deal with, but they aren't difficult or impossible, and technology often makes those issues easier to address. Just because its our job to watch out for them doesn't mean we let paranoia blind us.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 18:25 3

4. Stuticus (Posts: 26; Member since: 05 Feb 2012)


At least he got out before they made the Cookie Monster into the Vegie Monster.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 19:17 1

5. Exofuji (Posts: 19; Member since: 25 Jan 2012)


I cant believe this haha. I loved that show.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 19:20 3

6. InspectorGadget80 (Posts: 6736; Member since: 26 Mar 2011)


THIS IS SWEET!! THAT WAS MY FAVORITE 80s show as a kid. used to watch it on PBS all the time!

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 19:55 3

8. -box- (Posts: 3878; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


Loved Reading Rainbow. I love(d) reading anyway, but it was so neat experiencing books in the ways the show presented, as well as the other learning experiences (I vividly remember the visit to the wax figures museum). I think the only other show with the same sort of charm and engagement about books and reading from my generation would have been Wishbone and Ghostwriter

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 20:35

12. LoneShaolin (Posts: 307; Member since: 14 Jan 2012)


The wax museum episode was legit. As well as the one he did on the bridge of the Enterprise.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 20:05 1

10. JGuinan007 (Posts: 640; Member since: 19 May 2011)


My kids will get reading rainbow too!!!!!!!!!!!!

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 20:13

11. BattleBrat (Posts: 1175; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)


Dang i still remember some of the theme song, i'm getting old (26)

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 21:11

13. Stuntman (Posts: 784; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)


I watched it when I was young before he played LaForge in ST:TNG. I also remember Burton in that Word Up video.

posted on 06 Feb 2012, 22:56

16. axllebeer (Posts: 266; Member since: 05 Apr 2011)


Loved the show when I was a kid. This would be awesome in a few yrs now that I have a son of my own. But alas hes 7 months now so would still be a bit before he could really get into it. I hate kids shows nowadays.

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 01:31

19. tigermcm (Posts: 752; Member since: 02 Sep 2009)


I remember reading rainbow, wish bone, arthur, the good sesame street, big comfy couch, tales spin, darkwing duck, list goes on. Call me racist but our time was better and spoke more english. I have a 19 month old and I watch PBS with him, seems half if not more time is spent on shows that speak spanish more than anything. I'm not against learning different cultures but sheesh!!

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 11:22

25. PaulNotFromSweden (Posts: 52; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)


Seriously, does no one on this board remember Roots? Am I the only one who watched that as a kid? LeVar as Kunta Kinte? Anyone?

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 11:58

26. tigermcm (Posts: 752; Member since: 02 Sep 2009)


man roots was the longest series,movie, whatever you called it

posted on 07 Feb 2012, 14:26

31. InspectorGadget80 (Posts: 6736; Member since: 26 Mar 2011)


During the 80s and early 90s we have the best cartoons, kids shows, games, and movies. today's generation only cares bout electronics iphones/ipods/Android & video games. but not enough of them doesn't wants to read. this generation is sad.

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