Celebrating 25 Magical Years of Jewel Riders!

On September 10th, 1995, our televisions were graced with the amazing adventures of Princess Gwenevere and the Jewel Riders. This show has a lot of special meaning to me. It was one of my earliest obsessions, and I loved everything about it--the story, the music, the costumes, the setting, the artwork... Everything! Many of my other favorite princesses had live celebrations for their anniversaries over the years that I was fortunate enough to attend. Thanks to my friends at the Jewel Riders Archive, Princess Gwenevere will not be forgotten either. The archive kicked off their year-long anniversary celebration one year ago today with a podcast that I participated in with them and some of the other founding members of the fandom. Today, in honor of the 25th anniversary, we recorded a brand new podcast for all of you to enjoy filled with our favorite memories of the show.

Princess Gwenevere and the Jewel Riders Archive 25th anniversary original artwork

I have to admit that I enjoyed recording this podcast even more than the last one. Ronnie and Chris of the Jewel Riders Archive gave us some last-minute homework that provided an opportunity to reflect upon our favorite and least favorite episodes of the show and why. After tallying up our answers, "Song of the Rainbow" took the lead as the biggest fan favorite for the series' 26-episode-long run. This episode, in which Tamara is placed under a trance by a magical harp to heal the Crown Jewel of the Rainbow, is the quintessential Jewel Riders episode that was featured in most of the trailers and commercials for the show. It was one of a small handful of episodes that containing a song and features the Jewel Riders in their party dresses, as well as several of their other signature looks. As a child, I owned dolls of all three Jewel Riders in both their party dresses and their jewel armor. The winner for everyone's least favorite episode was "Trouble in Elf Town," from the show's problematic second season. I guess you can't win them all.

Princess Gwenevere and the Jewel Riders was the first Magical Girl show I was introduced to as a child. I used a ruler and protractor to reproduce all three enchanted jewels and cut them out from poster board so I could pretend to transform into jewel armor like Gwenevere, Tamara, and Fallon. I also used scraps of fabric and an old Girl Scout uniform to make rudimentary costumes of Princess Gwenevere and Tamara. To this day, if I could travel to any fantasy world I've seen or read about, it would be the Jewel Riders' version of Avalon. It's such a friendly and enchanting place with a soft color palette filled with all the things that I wish existed in the real world such as unicorns, faeries, and mermaids. The unapologetically feminine and magical setting provided years of inspiration for my writing. The enchanted jewels of Avalon heavily influenced the runes I incorporated into the kingdom of Klingland from my latest book series, The Stolen Trilogy.

My childhood Tamara costume

Ronnie and Chris at the Jewel Riders Archive have done an incredible job of keeping the magic alive for all these years. They compiled an endless amount of early production materials that were used to develop the show into its final form. Even though I consider myself one of its biggest fans, I learned a lot from their website and social media that I didn't about. For instance, the project started as an animated adaptation of a book series called Dragon Riders of Pern. From there, it became something called Enchanted Camelot, which looks almost, but not quite, like the show we know and love today. It's no wonder I loved the merchandise and artwork so much as a kid. From the Style Guides and early toy designs compiled on the Jewel Riders Archive, I can see that there was a lot of love and passion put into making sure that every package that contained a Jewel Riders product sparkled with as much color and imagination as possible.

Enchanted Camelot concept image

Unlike the Disney Princesses, who have dominated every toy shelf for decades, most people have never heard of Princess Gwenevere and the Jewel Riders. If it weren't for the Jewel Riders Archive, they may have been long forgotten by now with no one to celebrate this milestone anniversary. I'm so grateful for the hard work and dedication that Chris and Ronnie put into keeping the shoe's memory alive. It wasn't until Sofia the First came out in 2012 that I found another series that could perfectly captivate all of my passions as strongly as Princess Gwenevere and the Jewel Riders. I'm so pleased to be part of this magical celebration and look forward to seeing all of the great new content that the Jewel Riders Archive will release over the coming year.

Comments

Thank you for all of the shoutouts, for all of tour dedication and help in celebrating 25 Magical Years!
Thank you for all the amazing shoutouts, for all your dedication and for being a friend :)
Lisa Dawn said…
Friends Together, Friends Forever! <3

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