The Hub was an American digital cable and satellite television channel that launched on October 10, 2010. The channel, which replaced Discovery Kids, is a joint venture of Discovery Communications, Inc. and Hasbro. The Hub airs programming primarily aimed at children ages 6–12, drawing largely on the libraries of both parent companies.
The Hub targets a dual audience, young children in the daytime with original and acquired children's programs, and families at night with reruns of older television sitcoms, dramas and feature films. Veteran television executive Margaret Loesch serves as president and chief executive officer of The Hub. The channel is available to approximately 60 million subscribers.
On April 30, 2009, it was announced that Hasbro acquired a 50% stake in Discovery Kids, with the resulting joint-venture changing the channel's name to The Hub. Discovery will oversee ad sales and distribution, while Hasbro will be responsible for programming.The channel continues to use the Discovery Kids strategy of tagging their educational programming as meeting FCC educational and informational programming guidelines with an on-screen logo to list it as such on electronic program guide listings, despite the E/I policy being targeted wholly to broadcast stations, with cable channels completely excluded from E/I regulations.
The channel launched at 10:00 am ET (9:00 am CT) on October 10, 2010, taking over the Discovery Kids channel space after a final marathon of Kenny the Shark. The first program aired on the channel was the animated series The Twisted Whiskers Show.
The Hub announced the addition of nine new shows: Pictureka!, The Adventures of Chuck and Friends, Transformers: Prime, G.I. Joe: Renegades, In the Night Garden, Dennis and Gnasher, R.L. Stine's The Haunting Hour, Clue and Hubworld.
New programming from Hasbro includes new cartoons based on My Little Pony, Transformers, the Pound Puppies and Strawberry Shortcake. Additionally, the network will air a family game show called Family Game Night, which features Hasbro's board game properties adapted into a game show form.
A limited amount of original Discovery Kids programming remains including series such as Endurance, Adventure Camp and Scout's Safari, a contrast to other rebranded Discovery networks as of late which have taken on completely new schedules. In addition the network carries library content from Hasbro's defunct Claster Television and Sunbow Productions divisions, including The Transformers and G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, though not any cartoons based on Hasbro properties (or forerunner toy companies such as Tonka that were eventually purchased by Hasbro) made by Hanna-Barbera or Ruby-Spears Productions, whose libraries are owned by Time Warner and air on Cartoon Network and Boomerang. Other library content includes Fraggle Rock, Atomic Betty, Batman Beyond and Honey, I Shrunk the Kids: The TV Show.
Original Series Edit
- The Twisted Whiskers Show (2010)
- My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (2010-2014)
- R. L. Stine's The Haunting Hour: The Series (2010-2014)
- Strawberry Shortcake's Berry Bitty Adventures (2010-2014)
- Pound Puppies (2010-2013)
- Transformers: Prime (2010-2013)
- Dan Vs. (2011-2013)
- The Aquabats! Super Show! (2012-2014)
- Care Bears: Welcome to Care-a-Lot (2012)
- Littlest Pet Shop (2012-2014)
Re-runs and Acquired Programming Edit
- Batman: The Animated Series
- Superman: The Animated Series
- Dan Vs. (re-ran after the series aired it's last episode)
Programming blocks Edit
Various types of programs are broadcast on The Hub in programming blocks.
HubBub was a daytime programming block for preschoolers, airing from 9:00 am–1:00 pm ET (8:00 am–12:00 pm CT). The block exists on account of The Hub's primary target audience of school-age children are usually in school during that time period. Programming in the Hubbub block includes Animal Mechanicals, Maryoku Yummy, In the Night Garden, Strawberry Shortcake's Berry Bitty Adventures and The WotWots. Hubbub competed with three preschool program cable channels: Nick Jr., Playhouse Disney and PBS Kids Sprout. It replaces Discovery Kids's Ready Set Learn block.
Family Prime TimeEdit
The Hub featured a nighttime lineup on Monday-Thursdays from 7:00 pm–6:00 am ET (6:00 pm–5:00 am CT), Fridays from 2:00–4:00 am ET (1:00–3:00 am CT), Saturdays from 1:00–4:00 am ET (12:00–3:00 am CT) and Sundays from 12:00–4:00 am ET (11:00 pm–3:00 am CT). The nighttime schedule consisted primarily of off-network syndicated sitcoms and dramas made prior to 2000, primarily from both 20th Century Fox Television and CBS Television Distribution aimed at families and adults. Programs currently airing in this block include Honey, I Shrunk the Kids: The TV Show, Doogie Howser, M.D., Laverne & Shirley, The Wonder Years, Family Ties, and Happy Days (the latter three of which had previously run on Nick at Nite); most of these sitcoms are mainly part of a package which was formerly aired by FamilyNet in 2008 and 2009 before their December 2009 purchase by another party.
In addition, a late night block of action-themed programming aired advertised as "HubBoom", featuring Batman, The Transformers and G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero on Monday through Thursdays from 11:30 pm-1:00 am ET (10:30 pm–12:00 am CT). Programming originally produced for The Hub such as Family Game Night, Discovery Kids-produced programming such as Strange Days at Blake Holsey High and Adventure Camp and feature films aimed at family audiences also air in primetime in place of the classic television series on Fridays from 7:00 pm–2:00 am ET (6:00 pm–1:00 am CT), Saturdays from 7:00 pm–1:00 am ET (6:00 pm–12:00 am CT) and Sundays from 7:00 pm–1:00 am ET (6:00 pm–12:00 am CT).
Hub Network (2013-2014) Edit
In 2013, The network also began to phase in an amended branding as the Hub Network. In late 2013, Hub Network introduced an updated logo and a new imaging campaign, "Making Family Fun", which was developed by the Los Angeles-based agency Oishii Creative.
Discovery Family Edit
On June 12, 2014, it was reported that Margaret Loesch would step down from her role as Hub Network president and CEO by the end of 2014.
Due to increasing competition with not just other networks, but video on demand services such as Netflix, Discovery staff was losing faith in the network, as it was only making 9 million a year by 2014, and advertisers like Mattel refusing to purchase advertisement time didn't help. (The network not making enough money could contribute to why Dan Vs. and other shows got the axe).
On September 25, 2014, Hasbro and Discovery publicly announced the re-launch of the channel, and that Hub Network would become Discovery Family, and it was officially relaunched on October 13, 2014, just barely 4 years after The Hub originally started. Following the re-launch, the network's primetime lineup was replaced by reruns of family-oriented factual programming from Discovery Channel's library, though, some of The Hub's former programming was picked up by Discovery Family (My Little Pony and Littlest Pet Shop being notable examples).