Jay Jay the Jet Plane

Jay Jay the Jet Plane
Also known as ''Jay Jay (for short)
Genre Children's television series
Created by David Michel
Deborah Michel
Written by John Semper
Eleanor Burian-Mohr
Voices of Mary Kay Bergman
Gina Ribisi
Chuck Morgan
Marie Danielle
Dee Dee Green
Julie Renick
C.W. Walken
Donna Cherry
Ashley Alvarez Whittaker
Michael Donovan
Theme music composer Parachute Express
Composer(s) Stephen Michael Schwartz
Country of origin United Kingdom
United States
New Zealand
South Korea
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 4
No. of episodes 60 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s) David Michel
Producer(s) David Michel
Location(s) Tarrytown Airport in Tarrytown
Production company(s) PorchLight Entertainment
Modern Cartoons
Wonderwings.com Entertainment
Knightscove Family Films
Distributor Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Tommy Nelson
Original network The Learning Channel (USA; 1998–2000)
PBS Kids (USA; 2001–05)
Qubo (USA; 2017-present)
Discovery Kids (Latin America and UK)
Treehouse (Canada)
Nick Jr. (Australia)
Picture format Color
Audio format Stereo
First shown in December 13, 1994 (1994-12-13)
Original release November 2, 1998 (1998-11-02) – November 25, 2005 (2005-11-25)
External links
Production website

Jay Jay the Jet Plane (or simply Jay Jay) is a CGI/live action musical children's television series based at the fictional Tarrytown Airport. It has 73 episodes and is aimed at ages 2–7. The series is centered on a group of anthropomorphised aircraft who live in the fictional city of Tarrytown. The episodes are commonly distributed in 25-minute-long (as without commercials) pairs, with one header sequence and one end credits for each pair. Each episode contains one or more songs.

The theme song and the majority of the other songs were written by well-known children's singer/songwriter Stephen Michael Schwartz and sung by his popular musical group, Parachute Express. Created by David and Deborah Michel, the series is intended to be educational and to teach life and moral lessons to children (and sometimes also to parents).


In 1994, a short live-action series was produced at AMS Production Company in Dallas, Texas, with real model plane characters and animated crafted human characters; they did not talk, but had the same personalities as in the later series. This original series was narrated similarly to early episodes of Thomas the Tank Engine or Theodore Tugboat.[1] It contained three videos: Jay Jay's First Flight, Old Oscar Leads the Parade, and Tracy's Handy Hideout. These three episodes were known as the "pilot series".

On November 2, 1998, the CGI/live action series premiered on The Learning Channel. Debi Derryberry took on the role of Jay Jay after Bergman's death in 1999 with no new characters voiced by her. The Learning Channel removed the series in March 2000. On June 11, 2001, all episodes began broadcasting on PBS Kids; the end credits have changed and additional episodes were created in 2001 and 2005. Home video editions were released by Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment through 2003 as part of their "Columbia TriStar Family Fun" collection. Additional distribution was added with Tommy Nelson, the children's division of book publisher Thomas Nelson, although the series is not overtly "Christian". Voice actress Mary Kay Bergman provided the original voice of Jay Jay and several other characters. After her death, Debi Derryberry replaced her.

In 2005, new episodes were produced featuring additional characters, including the red Latino plane Lina. Each episode begins featuring a "Jay Jay's Mysteries" segment in which Jay Jay and Lina explore such things that may be mysteries to the intended age group, such as how planes fly and how the five senses are used. The mysteries segment is followed by a story that comes from the original episodes of the series so in effect the new series repackages previously broadcast content.


The planes and ground vehicles are CGI characters, while the humans are live action actors.

Relationship words for the airplane characters refer to being in loco parentis for purposes of upbringing and education, not to biological parenthood. The story says that (some of) the airplane characters were made in factories.

Some of the stories describe characters as doing actions off-screen that would need foldaway arms (e.g. Big Jake digging holes), but those arms are never seen on screen.

Young plane characters

Older plane characters

Ground vehicles




Tarrytown and its airport are never seen in moving-camera shots, and therefore are likely real miniature sets which were photographed and those photographs were used as backgrounds in the CGI images. The airport runway may be a CGI ground plane texture mapped with a photograph of real full-size or miniature tarmac. Sometimes, the planes taxi on the town streets.



The series was produced by Modern Cartoons in Oxnard, California, USA. Unlike Thomas the Tank Engine, this series used a variety of animation techniques:

The complex mathematical and CGI issues were solved by Frank Ford Little, PhD.

A number of proprietary software systems were used:

Jay Jay's Mysteries

10 new episodes

New characters


United States

The series was broadcast over many of the 379 member stations of PBS Kids in the United States. And also on Qubo.


In foreign versions of the show, the human characters are often replaced with different actors. For example, in the Korean version of the show, a Korean actor takes the role of Brenda. Unusually, the Irish version of Jay Jay the Jet Plane mostly uses non-native speaker actors from Belfast (although some minor parts are played by native-speaking actors from the Gaeltacht).




  1. "Amazon.com Jay Jay's First Flight VHS". Amazon.com.
  2. http://www.s4c.co.uk/ariawyren/index2.htm
  3. http://www.tvebrasil.com.br/jayjay/

External links

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 11/19/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.