Ben 10: Alien Force courtesy Cartoon Network Ben 10: Alien Force courtesy Cartoon Network

Kids, they really do grow up so fast. After just 49 episodes (and two TV-movies), 10-year-old Ben Tennyson is getting flash-forwarded to age 15 this spring in Cartoon Network's Ben 10: Alien Force. When the new series picks up, it's been a few years since Ben has worn the Omnitrix, a mysterious extraterrestrial watch that enables him to transform into 10 different aliens. When he puts it back on, he discovers his DNA has changed and he can now transform into 10 new aliens. (Just think of the expanded merchandising opportunities!) The show is being overseen by veteran animation producers Glen Murakami ( Teen Titans) and Dwayne McDuffie ( Justice League Unlimited).

Ben 10 is the network's No. 1 Saturday-morning show, so it begs the question: Why the change? "This is the first superhero character we have to play with at Cartoon Network where we can age him up and watch him grow," says Michael Ouweleen, senior VP for development and creative direction. "It just opens up so many possibilities. Rather than just introduce villain-of-the-week after villain-of-the-week, [we thought] it would be more interesting to see how his experiences growing up have shaped him." - Rich Sands