Care BearHeart

The original ten bears

The Care Bears are a set of characters created by Those Characters from Cleveland and painted by Elena Kucharik in 1981 for use on greeting cards.

The original development was through American Greetings' "Those Characters From Cleveland" research and development division, In 1983, Kenner turned the Care Bears into plush bears.

The Care Bears appeared in two TV specials called The Care Bears in the Land Without Feelings (1983) and The Care Bears Battle the Freeze Machine (1984). They then had a television series from 1985 to 1988, and three feature films: The Care Bears Movie (1985), Care Bears Movie II: A New Generation (1985) and The Care Bears Adventure in Wonderland (1987).

Each Care Bear comes in a different color and has a specialized insignia on its belly that represents its duty and personality. This symbol was known as their "tummy symbol". However, the movie Care Bears: Oopsy Does It!  renamed them "belly badges". Adding to the Care Bear family are the "Care Bear Cousins", which feature a lion, rabbit, penguin, raccoon, monkey, elephant, pig, dog, cat, and other such animals created in the same style as the teddy bears.

In 2002, the bears were reintroduced with new toys. Made by Play-Along Toys, the new toys offered features such as illuminated bellies upon touch, aerobic bears, and glow-in-the-dark bears. As part of this comeback, the Bears have appeared in two computer-animated movies: Care Bears: Journey to Joke-a-lot (2004) and The Care Bears' Big Wish Movie (2005). 

In 2007, the franchise celebrated its 25th anniversary, and another relaunch took place with the launch of the movie Care Bears: Oopsy Does It!. This was then followed by another series, Care Bears: Adventures in Care-a-LotThis series ran until 2008, and was followed by three more direct-to-dvd movies in the same style.

In mid-2011, American Greetings announced a revival TV animated series titled Care Bears: Welcome to Care-a-Lot. The premiere of the series capitalized off of "30 years of caring". It premiered on The Hub (Now Discovery Family) on June 2, 2012. Though Welcome to Care-a-Lot lasted one season, a continuation of the series, "Care Bears and Cousins," was commissioned by Netflix and premiered November 6, 2015.  Toy company Just Play debuted a range of Care Bears toys (plush, figures & blind bag collectibles) based on the Welcome to Care-a-Lot characters and style guide in Spring 2015.