Big Bad Beetleborgs

Big Bad Beetleborgs
Created by Haim Saban
Shuki Levy
Toei Company
Starring Wesley Barker
Herbie Baez
Shannon Chandler
Brittany Konarzewski
Billy Forester
Vivian Smallwood
Kim Delgado
Channe Nolen
Christopher Cho
Claudine Barros
Marshal Hilton
Blake Torney
David Fletcher
Joe Hackett
Frank Tahoe
Lina Godouse
Theme music composer Jeremy Sweet
Billy Forester
Composer(s) Jeremy Sweet
Barry Trop
Inon Zur
Shuki Levy
Kussa Mahchi
Country of origin United States
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 88 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s) Haim Saban
Shuki Levy
Lance H. Robbins
Producer(s) Robert Hughes
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) Saban Entertainment
Renaissance-Atlantic Films
Toei Company, Ltd.
Bugboy Productions, Inc.
Distributor Saban Brands
MarVista Entertainment
Original network FOX (Fox Kids)
UPN Kids (reruns, 1998–1999)
Original release September 7, 1996 (1996-09-07) – March 2, 1998 (1998-03-02)

Big Bad Beetleborgs (later Beetleborgs Metallix) is an American live-action television series by Saban Entertainment. The series was co-produced with Renaissance-Atlantic Films, Toei Company and Bugboy Productions.[1] It aired for two seasons on Fox Kids between September 7, 1996 and March 2, 1998.

The series adapted combat footage from the Metal Hero tokusatsu-series Juukou B-Fighter (first season) and B-Fighter Kabuto (second season).[2]


Season 1

Set in the fictional town of Charterville, three "typical average kids"—two siblings, Drew (Wesley Barker), Jo (Shannon Chandler/Brittany Konarzewski), and their friend Roland (Herbie Baez)--enter the supposedly haunted Hillhurst Mansion after accepting a dare from rich snobs Van and Trip. The house is revealed to be the home of real monsters when the kids accidentally bump a pipe organ, releasing a phantasm named Flabber (Billy Forester). He proves to be friendly, and in return for releasing him, offers to grant them one wish. They wish to become their comic book heroes, the Big Bad Beetleborgs. However, this also brings the Beetleborgs' sworn enemies to life: the Magnavores, led by the evil Vexor, who would summon monsters from the comic books to battle the Beetleborgs. Roland's mom and dad run the comic book shop along with his grandmother Nano. In a 6-parter, Vexor created his own Beetleborg, Shadowborg, which was a match for the Beetleborgs and briefly took their powers. They had to call a temporary Beetleborg (White Blaster Beetleborg) Josh, and after Shadowborg was destroyed, Josh lost his powers. The Beetleborgs would meet the Beetleborgs comic creator, Art Fortunes, during this six-part story in order for him to create the White Blaster Beetleborg and the Mega Blue Beetleborg.

In the penultimate episode of the first season, the Magnavores steal a picture of a new villain named Nukus from Art Fortunes' office. They bring him to life to enlist his help in destroying the Beetleborgs. Nukus assists them by planning devastating attacks on the city and creating Borgslayer, a hybrid of all the Magnavore monsters. Unbeknownst to the Magnavores, Nukus was actually plotting to get rid of them. Nukus tells Van and Trip (who were fleeing Charterville during Borgslayer's attack to their father's country estate) how to defeat Borgslayer, and orders them to take the information to the Beetleborgs. They succeed in destroying Borgslayer, causing the Magnavores to be swept back into the comics.

Season 2

At the start of Season 2, Nukus has challenged the Beetleborgs. Despite Art's warning that Nukus is too powerful, they face him anyway. Nukus quickly wipes them out, destroying their Beetleborgs armor, weapons, and powers in one fell swoop.

These events lead directly into the second season Beetleborgs Metallix. In it, the Crustaceans have replaced the Magnavores as the Beetleborgs' new arch-enemy. Nukus discovers that his creator is actually Art's incarcerated brother Les Fortunes. Nukus busts Les out of prison. Les now serves him by creating new villains to serve him and monsters for him to use. In response, Art creates new powers, armor, vehicles, and weapons, which Flabber then brings to life again for the kids, who rechristen themselves as Beetleborgs Metallix, hence the title. They are later assisted by the Astralborgs, four Beetleborgs created by Art Fortunes as a child when he and Les worked together on their only collaboration, the Lost Comic.

Nukus formed his own evil group named the Crustaceans. He would later recruit more faithful followers from the Lost Comic in the form of the Mantrons. Nukus and Vilor eventually gained upgraded Mega forms. To counteract this, the Beetleborgs were given an upgrade by Roboborg who fused their Metallix powers with their original powers creating the Mega Spectra Beetleborgs. Vilor's "mega" form did not last long and he quietly returned to his original look without explanation. However, Mega Nukus retained his upgraded look.

The series concluded with the Beetleborgs gaining the enemy Boron as an ally, stripping Nukus of his greatest weapon during the fight against Repgillian. Les Fortunes makes the decision to return willingly to Charterville Prison, disabling Nukus' ability to create new monsters out of illustrations. With no known way of returning the Crustaceans to the comic world, the Beetleborgs were left with an unresolved final battle with what was left of their foes.



Hillhurst Inhabitants

An old mansion outside of Charterville had fallen into disrepair since the passing of Old Man Hillhurst and became home to some rather goofy monsters. With the exception of Flabber, all the monsters attempt to eat any humans who trespass in their home. As a running gag, they never learn their lesson about trying to go after the Beetleborgs who always manage to outwit or clobber them. Wolfgang and Little Ghoul later move in throughout the series.





Big Bad Beetleborgs

Beetleborgs Metallix

Assault vehicles



It was not uncommon to see cardboard cut-outs and wall decorations of the Beetleborgs characters on the walls of Zoom Comics where the three kids worked. Other decorations used included the costume heads of King Sphinx of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and the original head from the monster costume Kappa from Ninja Sentai Kakuranger (the monster was used as "Parrot Top" in MMPR) whose body was used to create the costume Malavex. Toys from the Bandai Beetleborgs toyline could also be seen in various displays. Including the Special Edition Deluxe Shadowborg figure, in an episode which preceded Shadowborg's character ever appearing on the show.

Like other adaptations, some of the original source footage was altered for Beetleborgs. The Input Magnums, the original B-Fighter's guns, looked very realistic due to the black-and-silver coloring. In Beetleborgs, the gun's colors were changed to bright red and purple, and all Japanese footage of the Input Magnum's keypad being used was replaced with American footage using the red and purple gun. However, the colors of the guns changed from time to time due to the blending in of the B-Fighter footage. Similarly, the American version of the toy was done in red and purple colors instead of the Input Magnum's black and silver coloring. In Metallix, the Input Cardgun colors remained unchanged (grey and black), but the toy line changed the weapons to a white-and-blue color scheme. More violent scenes from B-Fighter were either covered up with large, Batman-esque sound effects or were cut out through comic-book-panel transitions.

The episode "Convention Dimension" had The Beetleborgs attending the comic convention. Among costumes worn at the convention were: Spider-Man, The Tick and Guido Anchovy. At that time Saban owned airing rights to Spider-Man: The Animated Series, The Tick and Samurai Pizza Cats. In Episode 54, Saban featured in "Gravesoul Owns."

Big Bad Beetleborgs and Beetleborgs Metallix ultimately ended because the Saban crew were left with no more Juukou B-Fighter and B-Fighter Kabuto footage to adapt. Their predecessor VR Troopers also ended for the same reason.


The show's theme music was performed by Jeremy Sweet and series star Billy Forester. A newer version of the song was made for the Beetleborgs Metallix episodes. The background score, composed by Inon Zur, had several cues which were also used on Saban's concurrent Power Rangers Turbo. Currently, Beetleborgs has never had any official soundtrack releases.

Reuse of Monsters

Various monster suits from both Beetleborgs seasons were re-used along with un-used Juukou B-Fighter and B-Fighter Kabuto monsters as enemy monsters in the Power Rangers series:

On location

The show was filmed in a number of locations.

Power Rangers Turbo vs. Beetleborgs Metallix

In 1997, Acclaim Comics published a one-shot entitled Power Rangers Turbo vs. Beetleborgs Metallix featuring the Beetleborgs battling the Turbo Rangers before teaming with them against Divatox and Nukus.

Release history

After ending a two-season run on the Fox network, the series was rerun on UPN Kids from 1998 to 1999. In Australia, Big Bad Beetleborgs began airing on Network Ten's Cheez TV morning block during February 1998.[3] In Europe, the series aired on the international version of Fox Kids, which was later rebranded as Jetix. On May 7, 2010, as part of the sale of the Power Rangers franchise, the copyright for Beetleborgs was transferred from BVS Entertainment to Saban Capital Group.

On June 15, 2011. all episodes of Big Bad Beetleborgs and Beetleborgs Metallix were made available on Netflix.

There have been 3 VHS releases in the US and Australia: The Curse of Shadow Borg, The Vampire Files, and Metallix – The Movie. They were all released by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.

Shout! Factory began putting the series out on DVD with the October 16, 2012 release of Beetleborgs: Season 1, Part 1. Season 1, Part 2 was released on February 12, 2013. Season 2, Part 1 was released on June 11, 2013. Season 2, Part 2 was released on May 5, 2015.

DVD Name Ep # Release Date
Beetleborgs: Season 1, Part 1 27 October 16, 2012
Beetleborgs: Season 1, Part 2 26 February 12, 2013
Beetleborgs: Season 2, Part 1 18 June 11, 2013
Beetleborgs: Season 2, Part 2 17 May 5, 2015[4]


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