Detentionaire is a Canadian animated series that first aired on Teletoon on September 12, 2011. It was created by Daniel Bryan Franklin and Charles Johnston and produced by Tracey Dodokin. The show features a total of 53 episodes, spanning across 4 seasons.
The story revolves around high school student Lee Ping, who on his first day of 10th grade was framed for a major prank and was punished with a full year of detention. Every day with the help of his friends, Lee sneaks out of detention to try to expose who was really behind the prank all while trying to avoid being caught by the school's principal Barrage. After clearing his name Lee sneaks out of detention again due to failing to escape Barrage's upgraded detention room. It is later revealed that the strange pyramid under the school has something to do with Lee's key, the parents council and the blue tazwurms. However Lee has a lot to learn about his family after witnessing his mother fighting. There is more to the school than meets the eye.
Lee Ping (Jonathan Tan) - Lee is the main protagonist of the series and is the titular Detentionaire. He is Korean-born/Canadian and a straight-A student, except for Gym in which he got a C. On his first day of school he was framed for a mind blowing prank and thus received detention for one full year and grounding for the same length of time by his mother. Every day since he's had to sneak out of detention so that he could collect evidence to clear his name. It turns out that he has had a crush on Tina Kwee since the Fifth Grade. His first name is common in the West and his surname is an actual Korean family name under the McCune-Reischauer romanization; his full name is mistaken for the word "leaping" in the first few episodes by Brandy Silver.
Camillio 'Cam' Martinez (Fabrizio "Fab" Filippo) - Camillio or called 'Cam' is Lee's childhood best friend. Though loyal to Lee and helps with his endeavors when he can, he'd just as soon ride Lee's new found wave of popularity as long as it will last (as being blamed for the prank had made Lee the most popular student in school). Camillio shows a rather strong interest in finding a girlfriend, which drives his motivation to try and keep Lee from openly denying his status as the prank perpetrator, as Lee's fame helps Camillio score attention with girls. It is hinted he has a crush on Lee's girlfriend Brandy, they went to a concert together with Holger and his date. In "The Curse of Earl Nigma", Cam buys a finished book report from a genius, and ends up getting blackmailed by an unknown person.
Holger Holgaart (Ryan Belleville) - Holger is Lee's overly loyal friend and A. Nigma High's Scandinavian exchange student. Though he appears and acts incompetent in all things, on occasion having to be bailed out of trouble by his friends, the value of his few skills have proven to exceed his incompetence. He's proven to be stealthy, easily running circles around Barrage, and his knowledge of Spa and Cooking got him the position of Water-boy, which he was able to use to find out whose hand was in a picture of someone messing with Lee's bag. He has a crush on the uni-browed mathlete Greta, who likes him back.
Biffy T. Goldstein (Zachary Bennett) - Though he's publicly a bully, especially towards Lee Ping, Biffy is a gentle giant with a soft spot for his pet cat Rumble kitty. Biffy helps Lee for reasons only known to him using his technological savvy, ingenuity, and intimate knowledge about the school and what's happening inside to guide Lee and track people of interest throughout the school. Despite helping him on numerous occasions, Lee is certain that Biffy will kill him one of these days. His favourite band is the Dudes of Darkness and loves a good rock tune. Later on, it is hinted that he and Kimmie knew each other, and (in the present) might have a "thing" for each other. In later episodes he has often showed compassion to the quirky Holger, who is riduled with misfortune.
Principal General Dr. Wendell Barrage (Seán Cullen) - Barrage is the new principal of A. Nigma High. A former Black Ops general with a classified pass, war amputee and above all is a fearsome looking cyborg. He has a no nonsense attitude and ruthless in all things. He firmly believes that Lee Ping was responsible for the prank and has made it a hobby to drag him to detention at every available moment. Barrage doesn't seem to be shy about his experience in the military, as he's taken much of his enjoyment, standard, and training methods with him to the school. He held the football tryouts using artillery cannons to throw the balls at the new 'recruits'. He's easily distracted by things military related, as he confiscated a phone which at the time had a game playing on it involving tanks, which distracted Barrage for most of Lee's detention period.
Tina Kwee (Krystal Meadows) - Tina is another childhood friend of Lee, and is Lee's secret crush. She's one of the school's news reporters, and does show a strong passion for it, however her rivalry with her senior school reporter Chaz Moneranian tends to make it harder for her to get what she wants. She's also up to help Lee and his friends as she helped find the owner of the e-mail address which sent the e-mails to different people whom participated in the prank. She is also out to unravel the mystery of A. Nigma High's growing list of missing teachers and staff (being replaced by Barrage,) shown in a series of shorts available exclusively on Teletoon's website.
The Tazelwurm - The Tazelwurm is a red lizard-like creature of unknown species that serves as the mascot of the school. It is usually seen either chained to the ground, being chased by Principal Barrage's "cleaner freaks", or crawling through the school vents. In "28 Sneezes Later", it's revealed that the Tazelwurm is actually highly intelligent and knows about what happened on the day of the prank. He gave Lee a file containing all the information regarding the prank, and even information regarding Lee's own past which appears to be intertwined with the prank. It later helps Lee on numerous occasions, and has led to him calling 'Taz'. "Tazel Wurm" comes from a Bavarian mythical animal, the Tatzelwurm which is supposed to have the front of a cat and the hind of a lizard with no hind legs.
Hazmats - Nicknamed Psycho Cleaner Freaks, who act as Barrage's minions and maintain order around the school. Their speech resembles an electronic speech synthesis and the sound of a swarming bees. They are later revealed to be robots and they have a much more greater role in the series' plot then just being school cleaners, taking orders from a greater evil. They are often used to make a person disappear, clearing every belonging out of their house, and then moving the entire house away.
There are also different types of Hazmats:
Red Hazmats: 'Good' Hazmats which serve Finnwich
Grimreaper Hazmats: Gigantic green Hazmats that carry scythes. They are more potent than standard white Hazmats and are typically used to guard important things.
Fancy Bots: Blue, hovering Hazmats that can emit an energy pulse that knocks people out, as well as firing an energy field that can suspend people in the air.
Brandy Silver (Melanie Leishman) - Brandy is bossy and popular. She told Lee that she was his girlfriend after the prank and Lee was her first kiss (episode 2). She is in the clique Glamazons which think Brandy is not always what a 'Glamazon Girl' should be. She has blackmailed Lee a few times, threatening if he doesn't do something she wants she will tell Barrage that Lee has been sneaking out of detention. She doesn't like Tina since she knows that Lee likes her. She cares about her appearance and popularity and is commonly seen in the hallways ordering people around or putting them down, but she does seem to have a kind heart. She later gives up on Lee and starts a relationship with Cam.
Chaz Monarainian (David Berni) - Tina's competition and co-anchor on the school's news program. He is always pushing Tina out of the camera and read out her share of news. Chaz hosts his own show called 'Chaz's Corner'. He is self-absorbed, obsesses about his appearance, and likes to hog the camera. He had footage of the prank which Lee obtains and discovers who switched his bag. He is also scared of getting sick and having messy hair. He has flirted with 'Glamazon' Queen Kimmie. His father as seen in episode 5 is also a news presenter. He gets suspended from the news desk in episode 14 and is jealous of Tina.
Lynch Webber (Brian Froud) - Runs the school server system. In the beginning of the series he seems to worship Lee and tries to be cool like him. He loves to eat peanuts and leaves a trail of them behind him. Lee initially thought his dad owned Green Apple Splat, but it was revealed that Lynch has surgery to make him look younger and actually owns the company. His real identity is Radcircles, the person who framed Lee for the prank.
Vice Principal Veronica Victoria (Hélène Joy) - An attractive young woman, from early on in the series she seems mysterious. She is the Vice-Principal of A. Nigma High and tends to be much more understanding and calm than Principal Barrage. She was fired at the end of Season 2/Series 1.
Jenny Jerkins (Stacey DePass): Jenny is one of the Outcasts, who are each said to be cursed with repulsive habits (later revealed to be due to brainwashing experiments), hers being chronic nosepicking. Originally introduced as a background character, Jenny's character gets promoted to a more prominent role later in the series. After witnessing Lee risk his life to save her and her friends, she feels immense gratitude and develops a crush on him, later becoming a part of Lee's team. Due to Lee's relationship with Tina, Jenny initially showed immense hostility towards her but the two gradually become friends after learning to work together.
The Serpent (Karl Ang): The main antagonist of the first half of season 4. The Serpent is a mysterious man of seemingly Asian descent who has a striking resemblance to Lee Ping. In earlier seasons he is often seen snooping around secretly watching or photographing other characters. He owns a pet snake named Priscilla. He has clashed with Lee and his friends on numerous occasions, enjoying tormenting others (such as tying Holger in a chair and threatening to cut his hair), he also often likes to threaten to feed people to his pet snake Priscilla. Lee views him as being his nemesis while the Serpent views Lee as an inferior copy of him. He also sees his battles with Lee as a game of "cat-and-mouse", going so far as to call Lee "Mr. Lee-Mouse-Ping". During early appearances Lee calls him the "Stink Ninja" in reference to his ninja like ability to disappear, as well as a pungent odor of rotten eggs (revealed to be from the necklace he wears). He has also seduced Jenny Jerkins (who had a crush on Lee) and posed as her boyfriend, in order to exploit her. It was initially implied that he is Dr. Ping and Sue's secret son, explaining his resemblance to Lee, the birthmark (covered up by a tattoo they both have), and being allergic to fish just as Dr. Ping is. This was later confirmed, along with revelation that he had no knowledge of this and was kidnapped by Cassandra and raised to be a vengeful assassin. He later reforms, rebelling against his previous masters and aiding Lee and his friends.
Sue Ping (Marjorie Chan) - Lee's strict mother who also works as a math teacher at his school and is the one who grounds him. She is not a teacher who abides to the rules, and will revel against the regulations if she feels it isn't right (as shown when she stands up to insane principal Blompkins and engages in a clog-cannon battle with him). Despite her harsh exterior, and her menacing accent, deep down she cares for Lee. It is revealed that she (along with every other teacher) is in fact a clone. While all other teachers are clones of intelligent figures in history (such as Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein), she however is a clone of the actual Mrs. Ping whose birth name is Shi-Hoo Kim. Lee is later reunited with his real, original, non-clone mother.
Dr. Alfred Ping - Lee's father and Sue's husband who unlike his wife is more liberal with Lee. He is revealed to have a secret past involving being hunted and constantly on the run. He is somehow tied with the Council who were his former allies but were revealed actually to be evil.
Cyrus Xavier (Dan Petronijevic): The lead singer of the Dudes of Darkness. Like Jenny he started as a background character but later gets promoted to a supporting character. Cyrus wears an oversized hat which obscures his eyes, always carries around his guitar and is known to randomly break into song. He was first introduced as the missing band member of the Dudes of Darkness due to being hypnotised by the prank song, but Lee helps him break free. In later episodes many students around the school begin getting anonymously blackmailed to do humiliating dares. Cyrus and Cam discover this and they team-up to try take down the blackmailer, but the blackmailer having been on step ahead instead makes them perform dares together. They later find many other students who are also being blackmailed and they all join forces to take down the blackmailer.
Cassandra- Cassandra is Kimmie's mom. After the vice principal was fired barrage was sent to 'Coral Grove' where Cassandra hacked into bararge's cyborg part of his head so she could control him. Cassandra is the head of the parent's council and is one of Lee's arch enemies.
Niles Pegg-The old man sleeping in the detention room who was the only one who ever took the strange book that explains the "Pyrimid of Doom" and the first to try to open the pyrimid (which he did not do on an eclipse which explains why he's always asleep).
Dr. Finnwich "THE AMAZING FINNWICH" opened the pyrimid with Lee and donated a lot of books to A. Nigma High including the weird book about the "Pyrimid of Doom". He also created Barrage.
The Jocks are a group of big strong guys with small brains. They are popular and go out with the cheerleaders and Glamazon Girls. Their leader is Steve, who originally hated Lee as he considered him a rival for team captain, but after Lee found his beloved towel he became Lee's ally. Ed was formally the Waterboy for the team, he appeared to suffer from kleptomania as he was unmasked as the school thief. Holger auditioned for the place of Waterboy and won so he was fired. He is a member of the Down with Lee Club and harbors a deep hatred for Holger.
Glamazons are a group of four girls that are popular, pretty and glamorous. Their leader is a rich girl named Kimmie who looks down on everyone. Brandy is the newest member in this group and Kimmie doesn't always think she belongs in her group. They are mean and snooty to less popular students and tease people about their appearances e.g. Tina's hair. Kimmie seems to have had a childhood friendship with Biffy, maybe even a relationship.
Skaters have short attention spans and have no patience. They don't care about learning and love to cause trouble. They did the paint part of the prank. Their leader is Zed.
Emos - There are about four of these. Joseph is the only member that speaks and is in the "Down with Lee Club" as he got blamed for the food fight Lee started. They write poetry and don't talk much. The girls wear heavy makeup and the guys wear guyliner. He works at the store where a bag identical to Lee's was bought for the prank. They don't seem to like Holger or Lee.
Mathletes consist of four math whizzes. They all wear sweaters with operations of math on them (− + × ÷ and ττ symbols). Led by Irwin, Lee's arch enemy, although Lee seems to better at math than him. Greta, a member of this group, is in a relationship with Holger.
Dudes of Darkness (music clique) are a rock band with four band members. Their whole life is music, although they hate techno music. Cyrus the leader of the band gave Lee the prank song that has strange hypnotizing powers.
Greenies are tree-huggers and are against animal cruelty. They were responsible for the frogs in the prank. They were trying to free them during the assembly on the first day but the frogs escaped into the school's hall.
Outcasts are the school's most unpopular students and former friends of Lee Ping. They are ostracized because of their unusual habits. They are: Lou (thumb sucker), Deuce (eats gross things) and Jenny (nose picker). It's implied that their habits are the result of being brainwashed after testing the prank song. Lee helps them get a Red Tazelwurm whisker, to help lift their curse, but they accidentally burn it.
Down with Lee Club - A group of students who want to get revenge on Lee Ping for getting them all in trouble, and sending them to detention.
The Geniuses - A group that works in a secret passage in the library. They are (unofficially) led by Irwin Dexter.
The Cheerleaders - The cheerleaders of A. Nigma High. Three of them are always seen giggling. Camillio has a crush on Toni, one of the cheerleaders.
The Fifteenth Graders are a group of several guys whom have not been able to graduate from high school for a few years now, thus they are called the "fifteenth graders". They're buff, scary, and are bullies and love beating up students. They like to hang out in what can be described as "a garage", where they work on fixing up cars. It was in their hallway, in the only non-destroyed locker, that Lee's original bag (from before the prank) was hidden. Lee had been directed (and given the combo to) this locker by the tazelwurm. When ever someone goes into the fifteenth graders' hallway, they torment the school, then they beat up the student who entered their hallway after school. One of the fifteenth graders dreams of one day going to clown school and becoming a clown.
The development of the pilot episode was announced on September 21, 2009. As of October that year, 26 episodes were scheduled to be produced with a budget of US$275,000–325,000 per episode; production of the pilot was set to begin in spring 2010.
The series has been reviewed by Strange Kids Club and Toon Zone, with the former also conducting an interview with one of the co-creators.
In Canada, the series was first shown during the week of September 12, 2011 on Teletoon with a preview of the first 5 episodes, and began airing regularly on January 5, 2012.
The show first aired in Australia on ABC3 on May 12, 2012. The fourth season finale premiered in Australia on January 31, 2014, and it remains undetermined as to whether or not a fifth season will be made.
The series is slated to premiere on the "Always On" digital platform of Cartoon Network in the United States as part of the platform's 2014–2015 lineup.
Home video releases
Episodes have been made available in the Canadian iTunes Store as they aired on Teletoon, currently spanning seasons 1, 2, and 3.