To preface I fully recognize that this isn't for me and most of my issues with it don't apply to stupid tweens with daddy's spending money:
Seems less like a "small team" and more like whoever's in charge keeps hiring whoever will do the work the way THEY say for however long they can keep them
Honestly at this point they have enough shorts and a developed enough idea that the pitch is ready. If they can't sell what they already have a pilot is completely and utterly pointless.
Honestly most of what they've done so far seems like a total waste of money if they aren't even pitching yet, especially since they're doing full animations (with some really fucked up technique, really jarring animation problems) instead of animatics
They probably could've pitched the whole thing to Hot Topic years ago.