Yoopa, Quebecor's specialty channel aimed at young children ages 2-6, officially launched this morning. The channel, which will not carry any "traditional" advertising and has the very pretty Mariloup Wolfe as its spokesperson, will have a lot of educational programming, but one name has come up that might surprise people: News anchor Jean-Luc Mongrain.
"We were just as surprised," said a TVA insider, who asked to remain anonymous because the announcement of Mongrain's show hasn't been authorized yet. Apparently, a higher-up at Quebecor half-jokingly asked Yoopa's programming planners to show a clip of Mongrain to their focus group of young children, and was shocked to learn that they just ate it up.
"Kids loved Mongrain," the insider said. "They love the way his eyes pop out when he talks, the way he says 'DUO-TANG!' They might not entirely understand what he's talking about, but they giggled and cheered whenever he came on the TV."
Quebecor's working plan is to simulcast Mongrain's LCN show on Yoopa. Parents can listen to his commentary on current events, while children can just amuse themselves with his over-the-top visual theatrics.
"It's really a win-win."
Mongrain's show airs starting at 10am on LCN. Quebecor expects to begin simulcasting it on Yoopa next week as a trial run.