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Latest Issue

In the October issue of MANIA we suit up for The LEGO Ninjago Movie, get the lowdown on Captain Underpants and play test Knack 2 the video game. There are freaky pranks and food to gawk at and the greatest skateboarding legends of all time. Enter our competitions to win stacks of prizes including a Razor PowerCore electric scooter!


February 6th, 2017 by Dom | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM, LOLS |

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December 14th, 2016 by Chris Neill | 2 Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM |

dogstar xmas

It’s just two days before Christmas in the year 2349 when all of the world’s dogs, including the much loved Clark kids’ pet Hobart, suddenly disappear. The Clark kids make a promise to find all the dogs and return them back safely to Earth before Christmas… but not everyone is keen to see them return.

We’re excited to return to the AWSM universe of Dogstar with the new movie Christmas in Space! We spoke with show co-creator Doug MacLeod and the voice behind Glenn Clark, Brandon Burns, to find out what it’s like to be doing more Dogstar and the worst Christmas presents they’ve ever received!

MANIA: What originally inspired Dogstar?
DOUG: “Colin South, the co-founder and Managing Director of Media World Pictures, was very keen to an animated series that was entirely made in Australia. That was pretty rare back then – most people would get their animation done over seas. I had a story I wanted to do, so I got together with a team of writers to make something and we came up with Dogstar. It’s a missing dog story, but on a much larger scale.”

M: What’s it like revisiting Dogstar?
D: “Joy! A lot of fans of the shows will recognise one or two old moments, but it’s mostly new stuff. This movie is also the first time we meet a race of feline-evolved life forms. The animation looks incredible. I think it’s a pretty impressive package, really.” 

M: How does it feel to be voicing Glenn again?
BRANDON: “I’m 32, and I’ve got a pretty low voice, so I was surprised that I could still able to do a higher pitched voiced for a young kid. The most exciting thing is that I have kids who can watch it now. “

M: Do they notice that it’s your voice?
B: Most of the time my son doesn’t, but my younger daughter does.”

01_Hobart back home with the Clark family for Christmas

M: It’s been a while since we’ve seen new Dogstar episodes. What do you think the characters have been up to during this gap?
D: “It’s like The Simpsons. When is Maggie going to stop being the baby? People can come to it fresh if they’ve never seen it, but it’ll please fans as well.”

M: How would you describe Glenn as a character?
B: “He’s well-intentioned, but a tad frustrated by his lack of intelligence compared to his younger brother. But his trust in Planet Man and Plant Man’s advice usually helps him get through at situation! He’s a leader, even if he doesn’t really know it.”

M: Are you a big sci-fi fans?
D: “Everyone on the writing team was. It’s kind of easy when you have nerds who speaks the same language as you. This was when Dr. Who was in hiatus, and we were so desperate for it to come back so we tried to make something with a similar feel. Lots of aliens and all that.”
B: “Not really. I’ve never been a massive Star War fan for example. But I love Arnold Schwarzenegger movies, and he did a bunch of sci-fi movies.”

M: Are you a big animation fans?
D: “I grew up watching Hanna-Barbera and Looney Tunes cartoons. I used to love the Bugs Bunny show. We were lucky that we had such a good character designer on our show, Scott Vanden Bosch.”
B: “I wasn’t a massive cartoon fan. I was more of a movie buff.”

20_Hobart and Glenn play catch

M: Are you a cat person or a dog person?
D: “I like cats.”
B: “Dogs – because I’m allergic to cat hair!”

M: Was there a present you were dying to get for Christmas, but you never got it?
D: “Money!”
B: “A Super Soaker 5000 or a NERF gun.”

M: What is the worst Christmas present you’ve ever received?
D: “My grandma dressed up a bunch of celery as a baby. She put a hat on it, a nappy and stuck on some fake eyes.”
B: “Totem Tennis. The bats broke after a day.”

M: Will we be seeing anymore Dogstar in the future?
D: “I would love to see more Dogstar.”
B: “I’d love to do another season of Dogstar. I think it’s really well written and made. I’d like to see Glenn have his own talk-show with a Planet Man theme.”

Catch Dogstar: Christmas In Space on Friday, December 16th @ 6pm on 9Go!

03_The most feared bounty hunter in the universe Baba Ganoosh

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December 7th, 2016 by Chris Neill | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM, Movies |

The Secret Life Of Pets is one of our favourite movies of the year, and we can’t wait to grab a copy on DVD so we can watch it 24/7! If you’re like us and can’t get enough of it, then check out this AWSM interview with comedian Bobby Moynihan, the voice behind Mel the pug! You’d be barking mad to miss this!

iNEW YORK DAILY NEWS OUT - New York, NY - 6/25/16 - Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment Present The Premiere of "The Secret Life of Pets" - Pictured: Bobby Moynihan -Photo by: Dave Allocca/Starpix

MANIA: What was your first pet?
BOBBY: “I had a parakeet. But he didn’t last very long, unfortunately. I never had a dog or a cat, but I did have some fish. I had those for a very long time.”

MANIA: Do you have a pet now?
BOBBY: “Not right now.”

MANIA: Did you ever wonder what they did when you left the house?
BOBBY: “I did! I thought it was a Toy Story situation, where my pets would go hang out with other pets when I wasn’t around.”

MANIA: Do you have a dream pet?
BOBBY: “I would love to hang out with a monkey for a little while. Sloths are pretty cool too.”

MANIA: Are you a cat or a dog person?
BOBBY: “I think I’m more of a dog person. Cats are too full of anxiety and running around too much for me.”

MANIA: How did you land the role of Mel?
BOBBY: “The studio sent me a picture of Mel, and I saw his tiny little feet and though, ‘Man, I’d love to do this!’”

MANIA: What was it like playing Mel the pug? Did you do any method acting to get into the role?
BOBBY: “Yeah, I only drank out of a bowl for six months, haha! Mel’s such a fun energetic character, it was a blast coming up with that energy to play such a happy dog.”

MANIA: What does it take to live the “Pug life”?
BOBBY: “A lot of being pampered. A lot of waiting for people to come home so they can feed you. And a lot of running into walls!”

MANIA: What type of friend is Mel to Max?
BOBBY: “That friend you keep around who might be an idiot, but he’s fun and loveable. He might be the best person to have on your team, but he’ll always be there for you if you need him.”

MANIA: If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?
BOBBY: “Any animal that can fly, because I don’t have that ability… yet. A bird of some kind, or maybe a monkey so I can swing around.”


Catch all the doggone antics in The Secret Life of Pets – out now on DVD and Blu-Ray!


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December 5th, 2016 by Chris Neill | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM, Movies |

We’re super excited to catch the AWSM new animated movie SING! when it hits theatres on Boxing Day! It looks so funny! There are heaps of really interesting different animals, and the soundtrack sounds amazing!

Not convinced? Check out our sweet Sing pullout in MANIA #196 (on sale right now! Seriously, don’t miss out!)

Sing! hits theatres December 26th, and like any good song we’re definitely gonna watch it again and again!


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December 5th, 2016 by Chris Neill | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM, Games |


Super Mario Maker on the Wii U was one of our favourites games of 2015, so when we found out it’s coming to 3DS you better believe we were excited!

Super Mario Maker 3DS has everything AWSM about the Wii U version, but now you can play on the go! No more boring car trips or visits to grandma’s place. Now you can load up one of the 100 built-in courses, or download some custom maps for the 100 Mario challenge! You can even make your own map for others to play!

Get your hands on Super Mario Maker 3DS now! Only on Nintendo 3DS (Spoiler alert, LOL)

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December 5th, 2016 by Chris Neill | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM, LOLS |

future worm 01

Who’s got a bulletproof beard, titanium reinforced abs and a photoreceptor visor? You call him Future-Worm (spoilers: he’s a worm from the future), and he’s here to kick some butt and go on wikkid adventures with his best pal Danny!

This show is absolutely nuts, MANIACs! Just when you think it can’t get any crazier, it gets twice as crazy! Mashed potato monsters, telepathic scientist, anchovy monsters, a T-Rex doctor, a guy with a duck on his head –Future-Worm has it all!

It’s like shredding on a guitar, while riding a motor-bike that’s on fire over a pit full of hungry bears: Totally AWSM!

Get ready for adventure with Future-Worm every Saturday @ 8am on Disney XD!

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December 5th, 2016 by Chris Neill | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM, Games |

Get ready for a blast from the past with the amazing SEGA 3D Classic Collections! It features nine all-time classics and remastered them to make them fully 3D!

The best part is how many AWSM games you get. There are shoot’em ups, racing challenges, puzzle games and the first appearance of someone called Sonic the Hedgehog – this game has got you covered! There’s something for everyone!

Get your game on with SEGA 3D Classic Collections, out now only on Nintendo 3DS!


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December 1st, 2016 by Chris Neill | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM, Movies |

Georgina Hayns is the Creative Supervisor at Studio Laika. She’s in charge of supervising the fabrication of all the amazing little puppets that are used to make awesome films like ParaNorman, Coraline and The Boxtrolls. We caught up with Georgina to talk about the puppets used in Kubo and the Two Strings!


MANIA: How did you get into stop-motion animation?
GEORGINA: “I got into it through being really hopeless at everything at school except for art. I had no focus; I love drawing, I love painting, I love sewing, I love sculpting. I went to art school when I was older and I was really interested in old Victorian dolls. I decided that I wanted to make dolls as a career, so I tried to convince my teachers that doll making was the way to go! They weren’t very impressed, haha. Puppet making was kind of a way for me to get around my teachers – puppets are like an artistic form of dolls. I really didn’t know much about stop-motion animation at the time, but I managed to get an internship at a stop-motion animation studio while at university. It really opened my eyes to a whole new world where all my skill sets were usable!”

MANIA: Was there any particular influences on your art?
GEORGINA: “When I decided I was going to do puppets I went out and found as many movies and TV shows that I could. I watched Jim Henson’s Dark Crystal and it blew my mind! It was exactly what I wanted to do.”

MANIA: How long does it take to create a puppet?
GEORGINA: “To make the first version of the puppet, it could take anywhere from three months to six months. It depends how complex it is. When you’re making the production line of puppets, it takes about six to eight weeks.”

MANIA: What was the most difficult thing you’ve had to make/sculpt?
GEORGINA: “It’s very hard to predict what the material you’re using will do when the puppet becomes moveable. There are a lot of weird little things, like adding too much flesh under at armpit. So when the arm moves down it makes a bulge where don’t want one! You have to really try with all your knowledge to make your best guess of how they might react when you move the puppet.”

MANIA: What size do the puppets range from?
GEORGINA: “The Giant Skeleton from Kubo was a completely new thing for Laika. He’s the largest thing we’ve done. The smallest thing we’ve done is the tiny Little Hanzo origami that hangs out with Kubo. That had limited performance due to its size. If there’s a really small character in a movie, usually we build it over-sized and then digitally insert it in with visual effects. That allows us to get a better quality performance.”


MANIA: I know they used a bowling ball to help animate the Garden of Eyes monster. Are there any everyday household objects that you repurposed for the puppet?
GEORGINA: “On Beetle we had to figure out how we were going to make his leg work and how they join his body. We used the rubber-housing on a car’s gearstick as inspiration.”

MANIA: Do you have a favourite character design?
GEORGINA: “The Sisters. I love their design and they look amazing in every pose. You instantly know they’re baddies the moment they show up!”

MANIA: How do you keep track of small pieces, like Monkey’s fur and the Sister’s coats, without them looking completely different in every shot?
GEORGINA: “It was much easier to keep track of the Sister’s capes. We actually laid out the 485 feathers for each cape, and we had a pattern so we knew what size feather would go where. We made Monkey’s individual fur pieces by combing silicon through a fur-fabric and then hand-trimming the pieces into those shapes. I think if you line up all of our Monkey puppets, they’re never going to be exactly the same. But you never see two Monkeys in the same shot, so it’s okay. She’s always so active that you’re never going to notice that one hair is different.”

Join Kubo, Beetle and Monkey on their amazing adventure in Kubo And The Two Strings. Out now on DVD and Blu-ray!

kubo DVD

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October 19th, 2016 by Dom | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM, Games |

YouTube Direkt

Feeling overly happy, lucky, angry or sad? There may well me a Yo-kai lurking near you! Yo-Kai Watch 2 is out now MANIACs!

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School Holidays Fun: Meet Elsa & Spider-Man!

September 27th, 2016 by Chris Neill | No Comments | Leave a comment | Filed in AWSM |

Queen Elsa

Get ready for the ultimate team up these school holidays, YAKs! Frozen‘s Queen Elsa will be taking a short vacation from Arendelle to visit Australia, and joining her will be everyone’s favourite web-slinger – the one and only Spider-Man!

Join Elsa as she shows off her magical ice-powers and, of course, sings ‘Let It Go!’ Meanwhile, Spidey will be doing everything a spider can, demonstrating his amazing skills and moves. Be sure to come dressed as your favourite Frozen or Marvel characters, and snap a pic with them! And don’t forget the free goodie bag and balloons!

The free meet and greet will take place on the Ground Level entrance at Home Hub Castle Hill on Saturday 8th October, with Queen Elsa and Spider-Man making their appearance from 10:00am until 3:00pm. Don’t miss it!

For further information please contact: Wintons Teak Castle Hill – (02) 9680 8571 or


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