ReBoot was an early CGI cartoon, frankly far better than a lot of the subsequent stuff that has come out. Set within the computer world of Mainframe, all the characters are programs within that system. Every so often "the User" downloads games into the system, forcing whichever section of the local population are unlucky enough to be where the game lands to play for their lives - because if the User wins, they will be nullified, turned into what amounts to non-sentient slugs. Too many lost games and the entire system can collapse, destroying Mainframe and all within. The lead character Bob is a Guardian, whose job it is to confront the User in the game and try and beat them, thus sparing the lives of the other programs trapped by the game's arrival. Bob comes from outwith the system, sent by his superiors to protect the city against games and viruses (which like the programs manifest as sentient beings in the context of the show). Bob befriends Dot Matrix and her kid brother Enzo when he arrives in Mainframe, and Enzo starts hero worshipping Bob, to the extent where he tries to become his sidekick and follows him into games. In one of those games he encounters AndrAIa, a young "game sprite", who is part of the game and moves from system to system with the game. She takes a shine to Enzo, and when the User loses the game, she figures a way to stay behind and not be taken by the game when it leaves.

At first Enzo is uninterested in her (he is effectively about twelve years old in human terms, so girls don't interest him), although he does like her as a friend. But at the end of the second season, when the system is threatened from outside, Bob enters into a reluctant alliance with Megabyte, the most powerful of the Viruses, to avert disaster. But Megabyte betrays him as soon as the danger is over, and flings Bob into the void that is the Net, apparently lost forever. Enzo is forced to take on Bob's role as Guardian, protecting the system from both the Viruses and games. However, after entering a beat-em-up which invades the city, he loses the game. In order to survive, both he and AndrAIa mask themselves as game sprites who belong there (the reverse of what AndrAIa did to originally leave her own game), thus avoiding nullification. They win the game the next time it is played, and thus escape it - only to find that the game was being played in a system other than Mainframe, leaving them stranded in a strange world. So they begin playing new games as they arrive, deliberately losing each one the first time in order to be able to piggy-back them from system to system, looking for their home. They spend years doing so, eventually growing to adulthood (which is why there are two very different pictures of the characters on their profile pages - the child and the adult), and becoming a couple en route. Of course in the long run they make it home, and all ends well.

The show, produced by Mainframe Entertainment, ran for four seasons.



Captain Capacitor




Hack and Slash




Ray Tracer


Web Riders

Regular ReBoot contributor Charles Ellis has written to tell me "this December is International ReBoot Month, aimed at getting more people into the fandom. The main site for the event is: , with a list of people across the globe willing to send copies of old episodes via CD to the needy (excepting Season 3, as there are still S3 DVDs available in places, unless you're outside Region 1)."

If you haven't seen the show, it's well worth checking out, and this might be an excellent chance to do so.

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