The Knock Arounds is a live-action pilot that was created by Chris Gifford and Valarie Walsh in 1997. The show was about a young rabbit named Benjamin and his friends who lived in the woods the creators preferred a little girl all along as the lead character, but initially were restricted by monetary considerations. He also went on adventures with his mom everyday. The creators weren't allowed to consider doing an animated show because, at the time, Nickelodeon couldn't afford animation. It would have been a live action show with people wearing animal suits. They called it The Knock Arounds. While they were uncertain about the future of "The Knock Arounds," Walsh and Gifford really liked certain elements of the concept:
- Characters take a journey
- Characters set and achieve a goal in every episode
- Interactive games get kids moving
- Stories have a lot of heart
- Strong female lead character doesn't easily give up
Once animation became an option for the show Benjamin was turned in to a little girl named Tes. Then after Tes they changed the character to a girl named Nina. Then the show started to look like "Dora the Explorer". Boots, who was originally a mouse, became a monkey; Dora turned from a rabbit into the strong little girl we know today. So one of Benjamin's friends was a mouse.