Nickelodeon is about to give kiddie viewers something new in the form of something old: favorite shows from the 1990s.
The Viacom-owned outlet has plans to launch “The Splat!,” a programming block featuring series from the network’s heyday, starting in October, according to a person familiar with the situation.
The exact series slated to get the spotlight and the times they might be shown could not be learned, but Nickelodeon has no shortage of programs that have become cultural touchstones to teens and pre-teens who have likely moved on from the network. Past ’90s series include everything from “Rocko’s Modern Life,” which debuted in 1993, to “Salute Your Shorts” (1991) to “The Secret World of Alex Mack” (1994). And that short list doesn’t include mega-hits like “Rugrats” (1991).
The programming maneuver comes as many kids’ programmers are scrambling to stem significant ratings losses that have resulted from many of TV’s youngest viewers migrating to streaming-video, mobile tablets and smartphones and subscription-on-demand services offered by Netflix and Amazon.
A website touting the advent of “Splat!” has launched at http://www.thesplat.com, and YouTube now offers a page devoted to “The Splat” as well, with minimal offerings. The page is festooned with characters from programs like “Ren & Stimpy” and “Hey Arnold!” A Twitter feed, @thesplat, is also up and running. The social-media efforts were reported previously by BuzzFeed, among other outlets.
The initiative is believed to be separate from another development effort by Nickelodeon that would revive some of its classic series with new original episodes and storylines that are buffed and polished for current audiences.