I am making myself another return to music reviews this month. While I am still in process of finishing the last half to my review of 2018’s year-end Hot 100, there’s also two other things that I’ve been meaning to do. First of all, I’m doing another ranking of a chart’s calendar year, specifically from the Alternative Songs chart, where I rank every song that charted during the 52-week period. I have been chosen a random year ranging from 2000-2009 and it will be…
Yep, after covering 2018’s Alternative Songs chart in Claps’ respective Best of/Worst of Entertainment thread, I am going 10 years back from that. What will make the impeding review interesting is that I’ve cited a few times that 2008 was one of the weaker years for the alternative chart…but I could be wrong. My final standing towards the year for the Alternative Songs chart will be revealed once I get my review for it out sometime this month. In the meantime, here’s where I reveal the second thing that I’m going to be doing, and once again, it has to do with the alternative chart. While I wait out the retrospective review and rankings, I’m going to take another look at the Alternative Songs top 20 in its current form.
Dissecting at this week’s top 20…well, what can I say? It’s pretty much more of the same mixed bag as the previous top 20 that I’ve talked on. By more of the same, I also mean that “broken” by lovelytheband is still on the chart’s top 10 (currently #7) like from when I last talked about the chart’s top 20 sine the previous year. Because I have absolutely nothing of worth to say about the song at the moment, I will exclude it from my rankings and replace it with what’s currently the chart’s #21, which is “Over My Head” by Judah & The Lion.
With nothing much else to add, let’s dive right into this top 20…
Spring 2019 Alternative Songs Top 20 Ranked (w/o “broken”)
Week of 04/06/2019
I am so sorry that I’ve gone almost a whole year without posting a new review for the Fairly OddParents. I have several excuses for it and you guys can take either one: real life priorities, I’ve already felt burned out on them, my interest in writing reviews being cannibalized by trying to gain back my interest in writing for spin-offs, the OAXIS controversy during the summer of 2018, planning on another review series, or just flat out laziness. With the series entering its 18th anniversary (and of course, add that the past year has technically been the 20th anniversary of the franchise. Yeah, it’s hard to believe that FOP has been around for that long.), I say right now is definitely a good time to revitalize my FOP reviews. This is not my next long overdue review of a whole season, but this review will be on a particular special that speaks plenty of words. So, without further ado, I’m going to talk of my thoughts, piece by piece, on the dearly beloved series special: Channel Chasers…
It only feels suitable enough to give Channel Chasers a separate review from the rest of S4’s catalogue because there’s so much about it to cover and so that my long overdue Season 4 review wouldn’t be so much of a chore for me to write and for everyone else to read through. I don’t even need to ask if Channel Chasers is worth watching. If it isn’t already telling, this episode is considered to be an untouchable masterpiece for the whole franchise from fans including myself. Anyways, let’s start off this review of this made-for TV film from where it all begins, shall we?
It begins with a perspective that is set 20 years into the future – a dystopian-turned outlook of Dimmsdale, of course. The future versions of Timmy’s two best friends Chester and A.J. are on the run from a mysterious man dressed in all black (most of us know who that person turns out to be, but we’ll get to that later). They try to hold him up long enough until they can freely use the time belt to go back to the past, but both end up detained by him. Vicky, the leader of the bad future, retrieves the time travel belt and plans to use it for her own means, that in which being to prevent someone in the past from interfering with her reign before the scene cuts to Vicky in the present, preparing for another day worth of torturing Timmy. It’s a solid start to an otherwise solid TV movie. CC paints a very interesting picture of a bad future for Dimmsdale and it already delivers its jokes pretty well, like with the one small moment where Chester and A.J. blatantly destroy the Dimmsdale Elementary school building while being hunted down the masked man.
Anyways, as the plot folds into the present era, we are eventually presented with a news bulletin where Chet Ubetcha acknowledges the most recent trend in which kids are dangerously mimicking snippets from the popular Japanese-animated series Maho Mushi. Expected for an average kid with fairies like Timmy Turner, he has gotten so addicted to Maho Mushi to the point where he has his fairies help him wreak havoc downtown, like one of the characters of the show. It isn’t long until Timmy realizes one of the consequences of imitating things that he sees on TV in real life when his ship is about to crash. That is until he wishes to be inside a “Banzai Bubble,” but he unfortunately bounces out of control. His recklessness ruins his dad’s formerly clean office and destroys a fragile glass house that his mom was about to sell to Billy Joel (yes, THAT Billy Joel). After Timmy’s parents find out that Timmy was the source of their troubles and that he was imitating things from Maho Mushi, they discipline him from watching any more TV and have Vicky babysit him to make sure that he’s not watching any TV.
This is the point where Channel Chasers really starts to get interesting as Timmy, desperate to find a way out of his loophole, wishes for a magical remote control so that he can be inside the television world. While Timmy was goofing off in his adventures through the television world consisting of Jetsons, Rugrats, Fat Albert, and Johnny Quest sendups, Vicky lands Timmy into more trouble when Cosmo fails to cover for him, letting it slip that Timmy has his television on before she would then lie to Timmy’s parents that he has been displaying destructive behavior while they were gone to gloat to the Dinklebergs about the gifts that Vicky got for them. However, before Timmy’s parents would come back to discipline him once more, Timmy is given a talk from Cosmo and Wanda about growing up after he comes back from the television world with a weapon in the form of a giant bazooka.
Likewise with Abra-Catastrophe!, Channel Chasers had its own central theme to establish it. While Abra-Catastrophe! dealt with the concept of confidentially: when to or when not to give away the truth that you’ve been hiding (at least that’s what I assume). The central theme of Channel Chasers is, of course, growing up. It does a good job with its theme too, but I’ll get to that much later. After realizing that he will soon lose his fairies when he gets older and after being misunderstood by his parents and being belittled by Vicky one too many times, Timmy ultimately decides to run away into the television world by wishing for another magic remote, where people can stay the same age forever, so he won’t ever have to worry about losing his fairies. However, while trekking through the television world to find a place to stay in, a masked man, who has followed him after using the time belt to transport the present (the moment after Timmy caused collateral damage in Dimmsdale), goes into the television world to come after him, as he wants to talk with him.
For the rest of the way, the main plot of the special focuses on Timmy exploring the television world to find himself someplace that he could adjust himself in for the first half, while the second half of that plot would eventually focus on Timmy trying to stop Vicky from making her way to the Biographical Channel to become a dictator and…you guessed it, take over the world. What I like about the first half of the main event is that Timmy finds the downsides in living in a particular show, and that it involves more than just the thin line between childhood and adulthood. The Walnuts Chanukah special becomes unfit for Timmy when he realizes that adults can ruin things for kids there as well, the Meatflints becomes unfit for him too when he realizes how boring it would be to live in a world with little backgrounds, and Go-Go-Racer-doesn’t-become-fit-for-him-as-Timmy-would-be-scolded-by-an-adult-for-partaking-in-a-dangerous-race-despite-being-a-racer-in-a-world-of-dangerous-races, OOH! AHH! UH! Then there are a select few where Timmy had escape from due to the masked man chasing him around.
Outside of the main plot, Mr. and Mrs. Turner have a subplot where they confront Chester, A.J., and Vicky’s parents about how they feel about Vicky with no viable answers until Tootie secretly lets them in on her evidence of Vicky’s nasty behavior. While Timmy’s parents are written to be very gullible, the series likes to remind us every once in a while that they do care about their son deeply. The fact that their plot revolves around their suspicions being raised about Vicky and that they go around trying to figure out about what happened to Timmy by first trying to understand the many times he tried to convince them that Vicky is an evil babysitter really makes their character establishment and subplot stand out. However, that is not the best kind of characterization that Channel Chasers has to offer…
What I really liked was the character dynamic between Timmy and the masked man who would eventually be revealed as his future adult self. If you remember that Timmy spends most of his character arc feeling disillusioned by adulthood, you’ll find his actions from when meeting future Timmy face to face as justifiable. As they continue to trek through the television world to try and stop Vicky, you’ll easily notice them bonding with each other not too long after as Timmy would realize that they are the same person no matter if he’s all grown up.
Continuing on with explaining the details of Channel Chasers’ plot, after Timmy makes his way into the world of Blackbird and Sparrow, he meets up with his future self again before he reveals himself and explains to him why he’s been chasing after him. Future Timmy tells Timmy that Vicky took over the world after she got her hands on a magic remote and made her way to the Dictator Week showing on the Biographical Channel. He endured Vicky’s tyranny by earning her trust so that he can get his hands on the time belt and travel back to the past without raising suspicions from her. After Vicky’s confrontation with Timmy and after telling him that she’s going to Dictator Week, Timmy decides to joins forces with his future self to stop the evil babysitter and save the future.
However, before Timmy’s group could reach Vicky at Maho Mushi, she destroys future Timmy’s time travel belt, ushering into a genuinely sad moment between him and present Timmy where Timmy’s future self is forced to leave the past and will exist as something new after he changes the future. Afterwards, the television film reaches its ultimatum where Timmy and Vicky have to fight each other in the world of Maho Mushi, which is easily one of the most exciting segments from the whole film. Things get more intense when Timmy, finding himself at an impasse, ultimately decides that he needs to remove the magic from the remotes in order to defeat Vicky. Do to that though, he has to, of course…grow up until he no longer recognizes Cosmo and Wanda. As a result of this, the fairy cab comes to slowly and forcibly drag the two fairies into the cab. With enough force to change Timmy back to his original age, Timmy ejects Vicky out of the television world before using the two magic remotes to stop the fairy cab from taking his fairies and reassuring the driver that he isn’t “all grown up.”
After Timmy has pummeled Vicky for good, he is left wandering around the nexus of the television world, as there was one more loose end that the television film needed to tie up. In Doug Dimmadome’s broadcasting station, Timmy’s parents deliver him a message broadcast on every single channel to tell him that they are sorry for their huge misunderstanding and they love him. This transcends into an incredibly heartwarming moment where Timmy exits the TV dimension to reunite with his parents. However…the special doesn’t end there as Vicky is in hot water now that the Turners have found out about her true behavior, thus transcending into one of the most satisfying moments from the whole franchise. After Timmy returns to the real world, his parents lash out at Vicky for how he has treated their son all that time before firing her as his babysitter. Feeling like he has seen it all, however, Timmy decides to use the magic remotes one last time to pause the very moment to tell Cosmo and Wanda that while Vicky is the main reason why he has fairy godparents, he wouldn’t be miserable and would then give them up if she hadn’t stuck around. Afterwards, Timmy has Cosmo and Wanda undo his magic remote wish and also wishes that everyone besides him and his fairies had forgotten everything leading up to the events of Channel Chasers had ever happened.
Likewise with Abra-Catastrophe!, the television film ends with the press of a reset button, but it does so in a very subtle way: it wrote a hypothetical ending for the entire series. I will go more into detail on that, but before I do, let’s talk about the very end of the television film. Timmy, coming into terms with having to grow up, buries a time capsule, with a photograph that Vicky took of him before running away to the television world (and given that almost all the events of Channel Chasers had been erased by Timmy’s wish, this is an apparent plot hole that I thought I’d point out), in his backyard for his future self to eventually rediscover before vowing that he will not make the same mistakes that his parents made. However, after Timmy’s kids Tommy and Tammy unearthed his time capsule years later, his adult self appears to have forgotten completely about his former godparents and everything that had happened over the course of the television film to boot. On top of that, and on cue with one of the TV film’s jokes, future Timmy appears to also have made some of the same mistakes that his parents made by leaving his kids with an evil, robot babysitter that looks all too familiar to Vicky. In the consequence of having an evil babysitter, Cosmo and Wanda are revealed to now be Tommy and Tammy’s godparents, signaling the end of the whole television film.
So overall, Channel Chasers sets as one of the best examples of writing a made-for television movie. Even though Fairly OddParents kept going for much longer, Channel Chasers really felt like a natural ending for the whole series, and what really sucks about the series’ continuity is that it resulted in the live action films and certain episodes rewriting some key figures about the show that were made logical by the events of Channel Chasers. By the end of the television film, we see Timmy coming into terms with the fact that he will grow up and that he will have to let go of his godparents later on while yet things will turn out better for him then because when he gets older, he won’t have to deal with Vicky anymore and he won’t be miserable anymore as well. When the show continued on, Timmy became more and more attached to his fairies and its team of writers, as it changed overtime, created loopholes around the concept of Timmy having to give up his fairies when he grows up, cutting loose of the already-effective message about growing up that Channel Chasers did so much to establish in the process.
Enough of that, now let’s move on to one of the central features of the television movie: the pop culture references. Channel Chasers essentially feels like a love letter to television as a whole and it really shows. Each segment of the television universe has their own distinct identity to make them so memorable and enjoyable. Maho Mushi, for instance, has a fight scene between Timmy and Vicky so intriguing that it keeps your attention to the screen. What really makes these pop culture choices stand out is that, while they are enough to be seen as clever nods from adult viewers, a lot of the references are also recognizable enough for the target audience to get. Granted, a major chunk of these sendups are based on other animated television shows.
While the humor is on-point like every other well-written episode of the show, the most humorous moments come from the television worlds. Among those highlights include particular, general anime tropes being played in an over-the-top fashion in the Go Go Racer segment, Cosmo and Wanda acknowledging the cartoon violence in the Ted & Jimmy segment, and the Scooby-Doo clone in the Snooper Dog and the Clue Crew segment just basically being an impersonation of Snoop Dogg. Also, while I’m still on-topic with the established television universe, call me weird when I say that I would’ve liked to see how the Dictator Week universe would’ve panned out. Like, what if the final showdown didn’t entirely take place in Maho Mushi? What kind of story would Dictator Week tell outside of serving as the catalyst to Vicky’s world domination? I mean, I’m not complaining about how it is buried beneath everything else in the television film’s plot. Channel Chasers is already perfect as it is.
In fact, perfect is the best way to define Channel Chasers. I should have said everything that I needed to say about this TV movie, so I’ll end my thoughts right here. No matter how many times that the franchise has dug itself out of its grave, Channel Chasers will always hold a special place for me as the true ending to the series. There’s nothing else that I need to say to justify why this episode is the most cherished by fans. Excellent
That is it for my commentary on Channel Chasers. With that out of the way, I can now focus on writing up my thoughts on every other S4 episode. Also, take note that I’ve said it before that I have another project in mind. It’s not as big as my FOP review project, but it will certainly be something extraordinary to most of you. I have been planning to get it out by the first week of April, but I have delayed my S4 review of FOP so much to the point where I have to slightly push to it somewhere near the end of said month. After I get my next, long overdue FOP season review out, I will let you guys in on what that cryptic project will be, so keep watch.
(This will be my last blog entry for the week, I swear)
I actually have a lot of things planned towards my blog as of right now. It's only fitting that I make myself another outline on what most of you should expect to see from my blog in the near future:
-Every Fairly OddParents episode reviewed: Season 4 and Channel Chasers (I have plans to introduce something else this month, so I'm not going to delay these any further)
-Every other season of FOP reviewed
-Part 2 of my top 50 animated music videos
-Adventure Time S1 review (Don't worry @SOF, I haven't forgotten about this)
-A new review for Looking Back at the Overlooked (And because I'm generous and I kept you all waiting months for a new review, I'll give away my next topic: Camp Lazlo)
-Top 10 Phineas & Ferb songs (I need to find myself the mood to write this up)
-Another Alternative Songs ranking (This one will be a randomly chosen year ranging from 2000-2009)
-My updated top 60 songs from animation list (Still need to find myself the time for this)
-And finally, another surprise that's coming this month
As most of you don't know until now, one of my favorite leisure times irl is going to thrift stores. The fun in thrift shopping is that you'll never usually know what you're going to find or settle with and that you might end up finding something that you either want or need. I've been interested in roaming around these kind of places since 2012 and my most recent visit was just two days ago when I decided to settle for a few shops since I had a lot of money left over from my Christmas shopping. It's also fitting that I start sharing some of the things I've collected from my ventures since it's been months since I've last been to secondhand stores and since I'm no stranger to you all. Anyways, here is what I ended up collecting in my recent trip:
Placed on my bed are 5 CD's from the likes of Death Cab for Cutie, The Who, Led Zeppelin, Ben Folds Five, and Green Day, Megamind on DVD, Watership Down on VHS, and Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, a book.
-My luckiest find that day was for the music. Loved the Led Zeppelin and Green Day albums pictured and I didn't have a copy for each prior, so I got them. As for the Death Cab, Ben Folds, and The Who albums, I haven't listened to them in full yet, but I've been curious about them, which is why I picked them up.
-It should be already telling that The Secret of NIMH is one of my all-time favorite animated films. For a while now, I've been meaning to get my hands on the book that the film was based on and I was happy enough to find it.
-I first saw Megamind three months ago when it was being broadcast on Thanksgiving day, and I was legitimately impressed by it. I didn't have my own copy of the film. On a whim, I decided to pick it up once I found it. I do want to go back to it, anyways, same for Watership Down. I first saw that film after renting it from my school's library last year. I thought it was a great animated film, but I wasn't all too impressed by it and I ended up feeling zoned out by a few of the film's moments. Although, I have a feeling that I will appreciate it more if I watch it more.
That's all I have to say about my recent findings. Expect me to do another one of these sporadically or on a quarterly basis. If I'm lucky and if I have any birthday money to spend, I'll plan my next trip in April of this year.
(Once again, much like my other list, my top ten is not completely spoiler-free, so read at your own risk.)
And that just about wraps up 2014 animation in review. Be on the lookout for my 2018 review for several months to come.
PRAISE 2014 IN ANIMATION!
I’ve waited so long just to say that. Now that I’ve seen quite enough (and by that, I also mean a lot) of stuff within the animation medium that year, I can finally talk about why I liked it so much. There were so many great American animated television shows, movies, indie short films, and anime like you wouldn’t believe.
...Then of course, there is the real talk of the town, which is the bad stuff that either debuted this year or prevailed into 2014. Take Teen Titans Go! for example, as I believe 2014 was the very point in which people started expressing concern about CN playing it to unhealthy amounts on its respective channel. TTG has become infamous for more than just that, so you guys know that I am aware. Anyways, this is no big deal.
Ah yes, the so-called worst cartoon of all time. 2014 may have some notably awful animated shows or films, but as I should say, there was so much good that year like you wouldn’t believe…
Okay, shut up. No year is perfect. I’m only here to talk about 2014 animation in its glory. 2014 might as well not only be one of the best years for animation in recent memory but also one of the most iconic in recent memory. Heck, even the bad stuff, I felt was iconic. Funny enough, 2014 was also the year that completely put Mr. Enter on the map, an animation reviewer who has been consistently scrutinized for quote-unquote taking cartoons too seriously. Even he was kinda iconic in 2014 since he’s partially the reason for the cartoon community rising in prominence, for better or worse.
You can all tell that forming my top ten wasn’t easy, as I had to make some painful cuts. Additionally, for a year in animation that I found to be so good, you’d know that I’d have to extend my number of honorable mentions to twenty-two. Before getting to them however, I have to acknowledge my usual ground rules first:
First of all, while my choices are broader, keep in mind that I haven’t seen everything nor did I need to. There was indeed a lot that I’ve seen, but my options were still limited. If there was something you really liked from this year that I didn’t mention or isn’t on my list proper, feel free to recommend it, but don’t beg to get an answer from me on why something is not on my list. If there’s a reason why, it’s usually because I never saw it, never saw any of the particular episodes that came out during said year, or it didn’t stoop to the level as whatever does appear. Second of all, for a certain television series to make it high on my list proper or list of cuts, it needs to have aired a minimum of five episodes that I have enjoyed. For any series that had a relatively short run during this year, like SpongeBob and Mike Tyson Mysteries for example, this rule nerfs any of their chances of making either list. Finally, and this is the first time I have to acknowledge it, foreign animated feature films, short films, and shows qualify for this year if it had been shown in its home country that year. International debuts in any other country it was released to theaters or to festivals do not count. Take Boy & the World for example. It premiered in a Canadian film festival in September 2013 and was released to the U.S. on December 2015. However, it was released to theaters in its home country, Brazil, in January 2014 with no prior Brazilian festival release date being archived in places such as IMDb that I know of, which is why I’m making it count towards 2014 and not the year before and after.
Oh, and just so you all know, these lists are not completely spoiler-free, so read at your own risk. Now that all is said and done, let’s skim through my list of cuts from this year that didn’t make the list proper, but are all worth seeing and mentioning:
Now that I got all of that out of the way, get prepared for some more of my insight on 2014 in animation as I eventually go through my top ten. Of course, because my commentary on here was already so long, I’m going to have to split my retrospective review into two parts. Don’t worry though, that last half will be coming a lot sooner than later.
So, apologies for the inactivity for my blog. I want to get the next couple of FOP reviews out, as well as continue my other review series that I haven't done anything new for since I started it in July, but once my finals week is up, this period of radio silence will change. And to make up for that, here's a review - a relatively short one for that matter.
After nearly a couple of years of hearing about this film, I finally saw The Emoji Movie just the other day through Netflix. Talk of this movie was inescapable over the course of 2017. The teaser trailer was torn apart by the internet. The trailer was torn apart by the internet. Jacksfilms was ironically hyping it up so very often. The movie in itself was destroyed by audiences and critics alike. It was such a historically bad animated film in the modern era that everyone who was anyone that saw the movie themselves have said everything that has needed to be said about it. It's to the point where I don't have to emphasize so much about my personal thoughts of the film. It was even so bad that it made people question the fate of quality entertainment in the film industry and it made a deep cut on Sony Pictures Animation's reputation to where some have dignified it as a bad film-making company.
So, where did it all fall apart? I could start by saying that just about no one outside of anyone in the entertainment industry asked for this. To sum up my thoughts on it completely, it displayed almost every animated film standard from the past couple decades that has been done to death. In other words, the film feels only like a template for how to make an animated film that can earn quite a lot of box office revenue. It is so unoriginal that it sets itself as an example of how not to make an animated film. The worst part of the film's story and its set-pieces is that it is all played straight. The Emoji Movie takes every part of itself seriously with its story, humor, and characters, all of which end up falling apart.
I've already said enough about the story, so then there's the humor that I have to discuss. Most of the film's attempts at comedy and entertaining its targeted audience either fall flat or felt incredibly forced. Then you have the characters, you got the typical fish out of water protagonist that is treated like an outcast until he goes on an adventure to get what he wants. You got the comedy relief sidekick archetype that you've already seen multiple times. Then you have the female lead who, despite the writers' intentions to try and establish her as a free-spirited character who doesn't want to keep living her old life by the way she was designed, ends up becoming adjusted to being a princess emoji, given the film's message. While I'm still on the topic of Gene, there's also his parents and their increasing "tension" before they manage to make up before the climax. You also have the main villain, and if you could judge her not only from the fact that her true nature was already spoiled in the official trailer, you could already tell that she would be the villain just by looking at the way her character is design if it already gives you the idea that she is a Stepford Smiler type of villain. From my perspective, she didn't ever feel like a twist villain despite the writers' intentions of making her as such. Finally, there's the main character of the real world who provides absolutely nothing memorable or valuable to the film except towards the whole "what x does when you're not looking" type of plot. Unsurprising for me to say, the animation and visuals were at least very neat.
What's really telling of how bad this movie was is when you consider the fact that two of its script writers had no prior experience in writing and producing for an animated film. Tony Leondis, however, has been working in the animation industry for some time, but a few of his past writing credits weren't really exceptional as it includes Igor and a couple of Disney's unnecessary direct-to-home-video sequels. Given that most people on SPA that worked on this film including the animators, writers, and director didn't feel personally ashamed of this movie, I could at least respect that. I felt like I could've resented it more if it gave me more of an idea that it was an animated film made by someone who disliked the medium and wanted to make even its target audience feel disappointed.
In the long run, it's too soon and it would be a little too much for me to say that it's the worst animated film that I ever saw. However it's still game, set, and match as the worst piece of animation to have come out in 2017 since I do not know of any series or other film that has topped it in terms of inferiority. I also think it would be too much if I said that this movie dignifies SPA as an awful animated film company. Never did I believe that Dreamworks was bad at making animated films because of Shark Tale and Bee Movie. Never did I believe that Blue Sky was bad at making animated films because I thought each Ice Age sequel they release is worse than the last. Never did I believe that Illumination was bad at making animated films because just about every one of their films released after Despicable Me didn't give me anywhere the same level of interest. In fact, failure is inevitable for anyone working in entertainment. SPA can do better and has done better. They have a couple of hidden gems in Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and Surf's Up while one of their recents, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, is currently being praised by critics. The least I can say towards Leondis and the other two script writers that created SPA's biggest failure is that I think they can and should do better, and if they want to prove their talents, they shouldn't ever make another film like The Emoji Movie.
And we have a winner. The majority wanted for me to do an animation-related review series, and I could already see why. As for the possibility of me reviewing albums or doing top tens, those type of reviews are going to be put on the back-burner until I have the time to do either one of them or if I have the mood for them. The fact that I haven't planned for this to last very long and that it's a series of blog posts that I plan to do on a monthly basis is a good enough strategy for me, so I knew this would be the best choice. The central basis of this series is that I'm going to look back at animated shows or films that are over 10 years old, but here's the catch: this is only limited to animated shows and films that came out in the 2000s, and an animated product of either of those two types have to have garnered little to no interest since the past few or several years.
People really want to forgot certain shows and films that came out during the past decade like Fanboy and Chum Chum, The Nutshack, Coconut Fred's Fruit Salad Island, Titanic: the Legend Goes On, Chicken Little and so forth, but considering that there are still some circles that are talking about how awful those were, they do not count. This series is for animated shows and films from the decade that fell below the radar. These are animated shows/films that just fell out of general discussion and/or just disappeared from our memory banks after they finished their respective runs. However, I also need to be knowledgeable enough about these animated shows or films beforehand, or I would be able to have access to them, in order for any of them to be covered on this blog.
Sometimes, I like looking back on some shows and films from my childhood that faded in obscurity after quite some time. I actually never usually forget about the shows that I had watched during my childhood, and while it's a stretch to consider them as "forgotten," for some reasons however, we have since overlooked them. What this series is going to do is that it's going to try and revive interest in those shows or films that have been distant from our memories for so long AND explore them in-depth. As you guys can probably tell, the most prominent topic that's going to be covered for these blogs are television shows that didn't make a lasting impression. So let's talk about an animated show that actually had a sizeable fanbase only for it dwindle considerably after the co-creator of that show would go on to create something more successful. As an introduction to my "One Hit Wonderland" type of reviewing series, this is the story of...El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera....
From my personal perspective, this show isn't much forgotten. However, I've seen some people point out that it has been left out of discussion from animation in general for quite some time, and some will go around to say that they have forgotten about this show. El Tigre was an animated show made for Nickelodeon back in 2007 and ended its run a year later in 2008 on Nicktoons Network (now Nicktoons). It's easy to see how it didn't have a lasting impression because of its short run compared to a slew of other Nicktoon shows that sat on a fence before Nicktoons ended their runs.
Right off the bat, I can say that this show was criminally underrated. From the days I've stalked tv.com to the last time I checked its tv.com page during my time as a regular member on that website, I could remember very well that the reviews for the show were really mixed. Some have liked the show for probably the same reasons I do, but there are some others who didn't like the show for its characters, its humor, or they simply wrote it off as a "rip-off" of Mucha Lucha.
While Mucha Lucha was about a family and world of luchadores, El Tigre was a show about a family and world of superheroes as well as supervillains. Both animated shows come from the same cultural background, so I can see why El Tigre has gotten these comparisons. While I'm still on the topic of the show's culture, one significant feature of the show is its animated cast being very comprised of Latinos while the show's aesthetic is heavily focused on Mexican culture. That is one reason why I come to appreciate this show to this day, but on the plus side of things, this show had thrills and a lot of interesting characters.
Over the course of the show's run, it had its own video game for the DS. It even had a McDonald's toy promotion, and it wasn't even the first show on Nickelodeon to have such a commercial tie-in. It won FIVE Daytime Emmys and a single Annie Award, to boot. A DVD for the entire series is available as an on-demand Amazon exclusive while also still being available on iTunes and Amazon Video. El Tigre had a good amount of exposure despite having a short run, but after that, the show's popularity was still frozen in the late 2000s and its popularity wasn't as big as it was since those times. I mean, like a lot of other shows that were 'too good to last,' there's always the type of fans that will still grip on their love for it and continue to ask for it back. It's easy to determine that there is much demand for a revival for El Tigre these days, but it's still there. In addition, the views for Nick Animation's videos centering on El Tigre or one of its co-creators are in low numbers outside of its intro theme. By spreading some more awareness towards this show, I ask whether most of us still care about El Tigre and would wish for it to come back in some form, wish for it come back now that we have learned more about this show, or if most of us decided to just move on with the fact that El Tigre had a good, short run. Let's not dwell on how popular El Tigre is as of now, let's just dive into the show's history....
Before the show: El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera was developed by husband and wife Jorge R. Gutierrez and Sandra Equihua, both in the art and animation field. Of course, there's a lot of ground to cover from Gutierrez, so let's take it from the top: he is a graduate from CalArts, studying under Jules Engel. From there, he developed a 3D animated short film by the name of Carmelo. His first job in animation outside of CalArts goes all the way back in 1999 or earlier as an intern CG character animator for Stuart Little, which wasn't an enjoyable experience for him. That was when he released it that he didn't want to be an animator and leaned more towards art and telling stories. Before he could express his artistic vision in what would be El Tigre, Gutierrez had previously been as a writer for Maya & Miguel, as well as writing merely one episode of Brandy & Mr. Whiskers. More prominently so, he was also previously a character designer for ChalkZone, The Buzz on Maggie (which is where El Tigre's art style mostly stemmed from), and of course, for the one show that El Tigre had gained most comparisons to: Mucha Lucha.
Meanwhile, Sandra Equihua is a Graphic Design graduate from Universidad Iberoamericana. She eventually came to California while studying under Rafael Lopez. At that point, she found her calling in illustration. After marrying Jorge R. Gutierrez, her role in the animation industry was usually working alongside him by doing character designs for Mucha Lucha and The Buzz on Maggie. Outside of animation, both Gutierrez and Equihua also have experience as painters. Their paintings have been shown in galleries in Mexico and in the U.S. as well.
Now for the history of the show itself, after Gutierrez had developed his art style for The Buzz on Maggie and while learning about Flash animation, he and Equihua landed a deal with Nickelodeon with a pitch that would eventually become El Tigre. The show's concept with superheroes and supervillains stemmed from the thought from Gutierrez that there were no Latino superheroes. Going from there, Gutierrez continued with the idea by taking influences from his own personal life in Tijuana, Mexico.
Two of the main characters for the series, Manny Rivera and Frida Suarez, were based on the childhoods of Gutierrez and Equihua respectively. The inspirations for the characters extend to Jorge's family, whose dad was an architect - a career that was viewed as good by most, while his grandfather was a military general, - a career that was viewed as malicious by most. Those ideas would then be exaggerated into the show's concept of heroes and villains. With more ideas coming into place, El Tigre would then eventually introduce the world to one of its firsts: a Latino character that was...neither a superhero NOR a supervillain...
The opening theme: Okay, this is not the cleanest transition I’ve made before I could actually talk about the show in-depth. Before I analyze the show itself, I’m going to analyze the one attribute about every show that most people usually know, because we always have access to it: the opening title sequence. The first half is a narrative on three of the main characters: the Riveras and their super alter-egos. The second half is by the time you would describe it as a ‘theme song’ by letting the viewers in on the show’s recurring tune. Once you’ve heard the tune from the theme song, you’ve also heard the music for when Manny Rivera activates El Tigre. AND once you’ve heard the music for when Manny becomes El Tigre, you probably know how the episode would usually end: the villain of the episode is taken down, and then the episode decides to end on either a pleasant enough note or on a bitter note. That’s where my analysis of the animated series itself finally comes in…
The show: El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera centers on the titular character with superpowers. Manuel Pablo Gutierrez O’Brian Equihua “Manny” Rivera comes from a family of superheroes and supervillains, including his father Rodolfo, who goes under the superhero persona of White Pantera, and Grandpapi, who goes under the villainous persona Puma Loco. Because of his dad and Grandpapi having two opposing views for his future, Manny is conflicted about being a hero or a villain. When Manny spins the buckle of his belt, he has the powers of El Tigre and he will use his powers for either good or evil. What’s interesting to note is that each episode of the series will focus on Manny being a hero or a villain. Eventually, we are introduced to Maria, Manny’s mother and Rodolfo’s ex-wife, who is sensitive towards the sight of peril. The fact that Rodolfo still hasn’t given up being White Pantera prompted for her to leave prior to travel with a mariachi band before coming back to land a job as a librarian at Manny’s school. While the show is primarily focused on ‘family’ as its theme, it also focuses on Manny’s friendship with Frida, a black sheep in her family of a police chief, a court judge, and her cadet sisters who enjoys getting into mischief alongside Manny.
Outside of the central cast, El Tigre has a wide selection of villainous characters ranging from Sartana of the Dead, the most feared and powerful supervillain in Miracle City, a sentient skeleton who can raise the dead with her guitar; El Oso, a ruffian dressed as a bear; Black Cuervo, or Zoe Aves, a villainess who is just about Manny and Frida’s age, who comes from a family of supervillains known as the Flock of Fury; Senor Siniestro, or Sergio, another villain around Manny and Frida’s age, who pilots a giant robot with a cowboy theme…and he’s from Italy; Dr. Chipotle Sr. a supervillain with a robot arm and cybernetic eye, akin to his son Diego, Dr. Chipotle Jr., another kid villain who turned evil when he saw his father getting thwarted by the Riveras, and makes weapons out of strange objects such as guacamole. Also, like Sergio, he has a crush on Frida; The Mustache Mafia, who use their mustaches as combat, what else?; Finally, there’s the Titanium Titan, Rodolfo’s ex-sidekick who turned evil after Rodolfo temporarily retired from fighting crime to raise Manny. He has arms made of liquid metal, which give him the ability to shapeshift his arms and even himself.
All these characters, along with just about every other character in-between, reside in Miracle City, a place that is ridden with crime, but the citizens are well-adjusted to the crime and crime-fighting that takes place. That in which would then illustrate the fact that most of the heroes and villains don’t wear their alter-egos like a secret identity. If there’s a particular cliché in the superhero genre that has been done to death, it’s the whole bit about keeping your superhero persona a secret. However, in this series, anyone who knows Manny also knows him as El Tigre. Anyone who knows Rodolfo and Grandpapi also know them as White Pantera and Puma Loco respectively. Of course, there are villains that do have to keep their identities a secret, in the case of Zoe, Diego, and Sergio.
An animated cast like that also comes provided with a stellar voice-over cast, so let’s talk about that. The very main character is voiced by Latino-American actress Alanna Ubach. If that name doesn’t ring a bell, she recently provided the voice for Imelda from Pixar’s Coco, as well as the voice for the central character of Welcome to the Wayne: Ansi. Given Ubach’s experience in acting and her voice range, she seemed like the perfect option for voicing Manny/El Tigre, and….yeah, she was the perfect choice. Manny’s friend Frida is played by Grey DeLisle (or Grey Griffin). Given what the character’s traits were, it was easy for me to see why Grey was a fitting choice. On top of that, she pulls off the accent very well. Rodolfo/White Pantera is played by Eric Bauza and I can say right away that the best role that Bauza has done IMO was for that character. When it comes to Rodolfo’s serious moments, Bauza’s voice is on-point and when it comes to the moments where Rodolfo shows his naive side, he nails it well and makes him more of an interesting character. Grandpapi/Puma Loco is played by Carlos Alazraqui, an already well-fleshed out voice actor whose voice was already a good fit for the character.
Aside from the main cast, there’s also an interesting and noteworthy selection of voices for the villain characters. You got Susan Silo as Sartana of the Dead, Candi Milo as Zoe Aves/Black Cuervo, Richard Steven Horvitz as Diego/Dr. Chipotle Jr. (and it shows!), Jeff Bennett as Sergio/Senor Siniestro, and John DiMaggio as El Oso.
With a very noteworthy cast and interesting group of characters, El Tigre already feels like a very well-fleshed out animated show in retrospect. This wasn’t case for Nickelodeon when they decided to cancel it after one season. So, for a show that showed a lot of potential, why did it go out with a faint cry on the network and in our subconscious?
The cancellation: To recap part of the show’s history, El Tigre officially premiered on Nickelodeon on March 3rd, 2007. It was first previewed on February 19th, 2007 with the episode “Night of the Living Guacamole.” This was the same night as the episode premieres for the remainder of SpongeBob’s fourth season, dedicated to Patrick Star. Truth should be told that the Patrick for President premiere night was one of the worst SpongeBob-related events, period. Those episodes outside of “Sing a Song of Patrick” and “Gift of Gum” portrayed Patrick as painfully unfunny or painfully jerkish. Also, “Waiting” premiered on that same night, just a grim reminder.
Okay, back on topic, the story behind the end of El Tigre’s run is pretty much the same for any other short-lived animated show: it was screwed by the network. The point where Nickelodeon stopped caring about El Tigre was after they aired the Decision of Destiny event on January 25th 2008, where viewers decide if Manny should defeat Sartana and Django or join forces with them (unless you saw the ‘evil ending,’ there’s actually a lot more than just that). This is tied to the premiere of the 22-minute special “The Good, the Bad, and the Tigre,” and spoiler alert, the ‘good ending’ won the popular vote. Nickelodeon slept on this series until June 16th 2008 when the network starting airing a week of new episodes for the show…VERY early in the morning with no promotion whatsoever.
Then the remainder of the season aired on Nicktoons Networks, where the show completely ended its run with the final segment “No Belt, No Boots, No Brero” airing on September 13th 2008. The episode revolved around the reckless behaviors of the three Riveras to cause family tension, to be brought into family counseling before their powers would be stripped away by Dr. Eugene L. Butterman. Of course, it ends the way you’d normally expect it to: the Riveras realize they have to work together as a family to save Miracle City. They make up and get their powers back. Frida briefly kisses Manny at the end, so a few loose ends were tied up for this episode.
What makes matters worse about the show’s cancellation, however, is the fact that, according to Gutierrez himself, he and Equihua had made a lot of plans for the show that would extend to two seasons. I can’t acknowledge all of them, so I suggest looking into the future plot elements that Gutierrez had shared on Deviantart and/or in other places. It’s an interesting read. To reiterate, El Tigre showed a lot of potential and yet Nickelodeon decided not to renew it at all. I guess I can see why, because while 2007-2008 was the period where comedy-driven shows and action-driven shows are in a good balance, it was probably also the period where action-driven shows were starting to drop like flies. On top of that, besides El Tigre, Nickelodeon already had Danny Phantom and Avatar: the Last Airbender in their lineup, so why would you focus on trying to get into El Tigre when you already got those other two shows is a question some people might’ve asked. Could that be a factor as to why El Tigre’s momentum died down, or is it because something else just took the place of its old popularity?
Did [the creator(s)] do anything else?: Of course, this is where I start to talk about Gutierrez’s CG-animated film that came out in 2014: The Book of Life. When I first heard about that film, I was excited to see that the creators of El Tigre were coming out with another project. The film was directed, written, and had most of the characters designed by Gutierrez while Equihua provided designs for primarily the female characters. On the plus side, one of the original writers for El Tigre, Doug Langdale, co-wrote the script.
In the long run, the film was quite a success. It has a domestic gross of a little over 50 million while worldwide gross extends to 49 million, marking a worldwide gross of almost 100 million, while scoring a respectable 82% on Rotten Tomatoes. What’s interesting to note is that Gutierrez has came out to say that this film and El Tigre are set in the same universe. In addition, some of the characters from El Tigre are said by the creator to be related to some of the characters in The Book of Life while in the film itself, Manny, Frida, and Grandpapi make blink-and-you’ll-miss cameos. I could go on a tangent to explain my adoration of the film, but my mind is set on El Tigre, so…how about I talk about a fair amount of its episodes?
Best / Worst episodes: Now we’re really getting into the meat and bones of this reviewing series. Depending on how much I’ve known about the animated show, I will provide a list of my top 5/bottom 5 or top 10/bottom 10. When it came to ranking my favorite and least favorite El Tigre episodes, I was able to come up with ten for each respective list. I’m going to start off with the bottom of the show’s barrel. These are the least that I would recommend seeing, but keep in mind that half of these are merely mediocre at best:
10. 24a. The Cuervo Project: I could make a joke that no one asked for an episode centered on the two pets of the Rivera family, but when it comes right down to the fact that “Animales” cycled through five writers including Gutierrez, I knew I can’t rank it on here since I could see that this episode at least had a good amount of effort put into it, looking back on it. Also, it’s because I didn’t remember most of the episode. Instead, my #10 spot is for an episode that I know that some have liked a lot….
You can’t go wrong with an episode that deals with Zoe being paired up with Manny and Frida as project partners, along with Frida questioning if she actually is Black Cuervo, but this episode didn’t work for me as much as I thought it should. The episode ends with Manny and Frida apparently still being unsure about Black Cuervo’s true identity, in due to Zoe’s grandmami masquerading as her so that her cover doesn’t get blown. In other words, this episode leads up to little to nothing. Since I didn’t remember so much from this segment, I couldn’t bring it any lower on my list.
9. 8a. Miracle City Worker: Maria is tired of the villains committing crime after crime, so she creates a luxury home to rehabilitate some of the villains in Miracle City. Manny tries to convince his mother that she can’t trust the villains to change, and when Manny and Frida decide not to waste their time trying to convince Maria that the villains can’t stay good…guess what happens. I like the beginning of the episode with Manny spending quality time with Maria, but the rest of the episode didn’t get any kicks or thrills out of me.
8. 16a. The Cactus Kid: A new villain blows into Miracle City and eventually catches the attention of Grandpapi, who decides to make him his supervillain apprentice in order to make Manny feel jealous. The storyline isn’t really bad, but I don’t remember enjoying this episode. Cactus Kid annoyed me a little too much to zone me out from some moments until his apprenticeship reveals an improvement with his powers.
7. 25b. Mustache Love: The first episode with Raul the mustache is centered on it being created and forming a bond with Manny. The second episode has Raul being framed, leading to Manny to go undercover with the Mustache Mafia to prove Raul’s innocence. This segment was about Raul needing Manny’s help to impress Browsia, the bushy eyebrows that belong to an American girl named Sofia. For a good chunk of the episode’s duration, this was just really dull to sit through. It doesn’t help that Sofia legitimately annoyed me.
6. 26a. Back to Escuela: Grandpapi goes to school with Manny so that he can steal the cursed Silver Scorpion of Sonora that is being put in display. Because Grandpapi makes a deal with Vice Principal Chakal that he and Manny will be transferred to a school in Antarctica if they cause trouble...yeah, guess how the episode ends. One part of why I didn’t like the episode was because it didn’t get any laughs from me, the episode ending on an abrupt and bitter note was what really took the cake.
5. 23b. Silver Wolf: This is the one point where the Titanium Titan’s obsession with getting rid of Manny shifts into some pretty creepy territory. This episode revolves around Frida falling in love with teen supervillain Silver Wolf, who is later revealed to be the Titan in disguise. You can tell how the episode pans out. Frida manages to get the attention of Silver Wolf, falls head over heels, ditches her friend Manny to spend time with Silver Wolf to the point where Manny becomes jealous, as Frida so accuses him to be, and decides to complete take Silver Wolf’s trust…until he threatens to kill him. I’ll give this episode credit for not having Frida think long and hard where she has a choice to side with Manny or with Silver Wolf by just choosing Manny, but still, this episode was tedious to watch.
4. 11a. Ballad of Frida Suarez: This is just your basic, average “fame makes you insane” type of episode. I just never found this episode funny and for the most part, even if it was intentional, Frida was not very likeable in this episode as one joke about Manny getting defeated by Sartana, which involves him inadvertently exposing his Zebra Donkey underwear, turns into an episode that makes it seem like Frida is being a jerk towards Manny. The episode ends with Frida’s goggles getting smashed, as karma for the way she was behaving, but then you got the final scene where a pumpkin falls on her head before rats scurry about to attack her. I mean, it’s fine that Frida does get some comeuppance, but I don’t know I should feel about the episode ending with Frida feeling anguished than just…upset.
3. & 2. 10a. The Curse of The Albino Burrito / 15a. Burrito’s Little Helper: Davi/The Albino Burrito is the most insufferably annoying character from this series and there’s nothing that can change my mind about that. The less I expose myself to Davi singing his theme to the tune of “Ride of the Valkyries,” the less that I would dread watching both of these episodes.
1. 24b. The Golden Eagle Twins: Now here’s the real rotten apple of the bunch right here. The episode centers on the Golden Eagle Twins visiting the Riveras. Manny and Frida have to spend time with them to learn some things about being a hero. However, the twins eventually turn out to be villains but with good publicity, doing villainous acts that they shouldn’t be getting away with by using their “credibility” as an advantage. The episode ends with the twins’ statue being accidently destroyed by their zeppelin (which Frida constantly misinterprets as a blimp). And you want to know the tip of the iceberg? Instead of the twins’ actions being unveiled, Manny ends up getting arrested, while the twins are still seen as heroes. Yep, the one pair of characters that we’re not supposed to root for win. There’s also a ‘wah-wah-wah’ sound at the very end to convince you otherwise that this episode was as bad.
And now…here are ten episodes that, in my opinion, cement how good this show can be:
10. 4a. Zebra Donkey: Manny wins a raffle so that he and Frida can spend the whole spring break with the school mascot: Zebra Donkey. Zebra Donkey eventually dies after eating one to many bananas. Unbeknownst to Manny, who didn’t watch Dr. Eugene L. Butterman’s documentary DVD, bananas are lethal to the school’s mascot. Manny and Frida eventually decide to take the risk of stealing Sartana’s guitar to bring Zebra Donkey back to life. This is on my list because it’s one of those episodes I’ve remembered best, and it serves as an introduction to Sartana of the Dead. Another highlight from the episode is near the end with Zebra Donkey sacrificing himself to defeat Sartana…only to be brought back from the dead again after Manny plucked the string from Sartana’s damaged guitar, given its use to raise the dead.
9. 1b. Night of the Living Guacamole: For many, this was the series’ first impression. Upon seeing this episode when it was previewed, I was already sold on this show. It had a pretty creative plot, and most of all, a lot of the jokes really worked for me, with lines like “Helping the poor!, “Frida, I can’t go home without guacamole, the floaty tattoo dad head won’t let me!” and this piece of dialogue: “I don’t know, creepy old lady, coming out of the shadows…” “It’s free!” “Sold.” Also, Dr. Chipotle Jr. was another one of the episode’s highlights, enough said.
8. 20b. Mech Daddy: This episode has a bit of joke about Manny and Frida unintentionally destroying an orphanage and a puppy hospital (with no one inside them, mind you) while trying to control Giant Robot Sanchez and it’s still a solid enough episode for the show. This episode centers on Manny and Frida getting stuck inside Giant Robot Sanchez’s head while the robot’s own mind is in a comatose state. The real kicker of this episode is when Manny and Frida come to the realization that GRS, whie a supervillain, is married with a wife and two kids. From then on, the episode is spent on Manny and Frida bonding with GRS’ kids while inside his robot body. Once as the episode transitions into the moment where Manny and Frida must save the lives of GRS’ kids is where the episode gets more interesting.
7. 7b. Puma Licito: Rodolfo and Maria fear that Grandpapi is so much of a bad influence on Manny that they might have to let him move out. Manny and Frida catch wind of this and decide to take the Golden Sombrero of Chaos to masquerade as Puma Loco and do some good deeds. Simply put, it’s an episode centered on Grandpapi that I attained the most from. It’s strangely heartwarming while also being pretty funny. Iirc, one moment that got a kick out of me was when Manny and Frida decide to just do the opposite of the first few things that they’ve done while impersonating Puma Loco, to fix Grandpapi’s reputation as a supervillain.
6. 9a. Yellow Pantera: When Manny’s classmates tell him that his father was a coward, Manny reacts justifiably before they tell him that Rodolfo ran away from a fight with El Mar Verde: a giant that devours superheroes. So he could restore the honor of the Riveras, Manny decides to take on El Mar Verde himself. Considering the nature of this episode, it is easily charming, coupled with some pretty hilarious moments as well, like Frida pronouncing library as “li-berry” and the same character just simply throwing a book at El Mar Verde as a stab at trying to defeat him. The one moment from the episode that did get to me, however, was when Manny realizes that Rodolfo didn’t run away from the fight because he was a coward, but because he didn’t want to continue to take the risk so he could still be there for his family.
5. 4b. Adios Amigos: One day at a carnival, Manny and Frida come across a new enemy known as the Titanium Titan, who used to be the sidekick of White Pantera. After seeing that her daughter got harmed by the Titan, Emiliano forbids Manny from hanging out with her again, believing that Manny would just keep leading Frida into the brink of danger. Manny himself decides to come to that agreement. Bar none, it’s the best episode that puts Manny and Frida’s friendship to the test. Seeing how Manny and Frida are visibly miserable without one another is heartbreaking. On the plus side, I also like the backstory for Rodolfo and why the Titanium Titan sought revenge against Manny.
The main highlight of the episode is near the end where Manny is forced into another fight against the Titan inside of the Miracle City volcano in order to save Frida. The real kicker is towards whom arrives to save Manny and Frida by the end: Grandpapi. In other words, this episode was just filled with heart-wrenching moments and surprising depth.
4. 10b. La Tigresa: Tired of being powerless and not being seen as useful, she decides to become El Tigre herself once she has the golden opportunity to take his belt. With the belt, she becomes La Tigresa and fights crime in Miracle City overnight, but she also has to ensure that Manny doesn’t find out who La Tigresa really is.
When I first got into the show, I’ve always had the thought of how Frida having superpowers or becoming El Tigre would make for a good plot. I pretty much got my wish with this episode and I appreciate the story that it tells with how dejected Frida feels about being normal, and how the episode ends with Frida being well-adjusted to being normal after she manages to beat Sartana of the Dead without the belt and by throwing a potato into the sound hole of Sartana’s guitar. Speaking of which, one of my favorite jokes from the episode is where Frida sees several useful options in front of her on how she should defeat Sartana...and ultimately goes with a potato as her weapon…and this just doesn’t happen near the end, it happens in the beginning as well. It’s such a good episode that establishes Frida’s character nicely…too bad this is the only time we got to see La Tigresa though.
3. 16b. A Mother’s Glove: In this episode, Manny learns that Maria used to be a superhero after finding her Glove of Power in the attic, who went by the name of Plata Peligrosa. This episode was a very interesting way to show why Maria stopped using her powers and even why she tends to hyperventilate at the sight of danger. We eventually learn that the longer that Maria has the glove on, and in due to the glove itself being sentient, the more obsessed she is about fighting crime. While as Plata Peligrosa, Maria goes as far as to break every villain in Miracle City out of jail just to fight them, before she eventually becomes compelled to even fight her own self, which was probably the most humorous moment from the episode. Overall, it’s a very well-written episode that does an otherwise good job in establishing Maria’s character.
2. 20a. Stinking Badges!: Frida wants to impress her father by becoming a junior cadet as she doesn’t want to deal with being ‘different’ from her family. After several days’ worth of failing to succeed in the academy, Frida requests for Manny to defeat the villains of Miracle City and have her take the credit. Yeah, yeah, that would exactly be a plot point that would make for a “Liar Revealed” type of episode, and of course, Emilio Suarez does find out soon enough, but it’s not until the climax and the very end that this episode redeems itself more. After the Mustache Mafia attack Frida, Emiliano Suarez pummels them for eight hours. After saving Frida, Emiliano reminds her that she is already perfect the way that she is and that she didn’t have to do anything to make him love her in return.
Now, my appreciation towards this episode actually goes beyond the ending. The main premise behind the episode is that Frida goes to great lengths to show how much she loves her father. She enrolls in the police academy and convinces her dad that she had taken down the Miracle City villains that Manny took care of himself, all to impress him. Of course, there’s still the underlying plot element whereas Frida was being dishonest and that the lie was going to be unveiled someway, somehow, but she also stretched the truth so that she could impress her dad while she did feel guilty about breaking her dad’s code of honesty. Even Frida’s twin sisters, after torturing Frida during her cadet training and after telling Emiliano the truth that Frida had been hiding, are given some sort of a redemption as they attempt to take down the Mustache Mafia once they lay a finger on their younger sister.
This is an episode that really tugs at the heartstrings and it would’ve been my absolute favorite episode if not for one particular 22-minute special that already came before this segment…
1. 14. The Grave Escape: When people first saw the trailer for Coco, one movie they thought of right away was “The Book of Life.” However, if I could compare Coco to anything, I would’ve acknowledged the fact that it feels closer to this episode of El Tigre than The Book of Life. When I saw no one make that comparison, that’s when I came to the conclusion that El Tigre was being forgotten. So, how close do I think “The Grave Escape” is to Coco, you may ask? To start with the obvious, they both take place during Dia de Muertos (The Day of the Dead), it involves the main characters being trapped in the Land of the Dead, it involves the main characters slowly turning into skeletons before they manage to escape, it has the main characters having to reach out to their old ancestors for help, and of course, family is the central theme.
It’s a pity that not as many folks have remembered this. This episode was more than just a holiday special dedicated to Dia de Muertos. It was also probably the first of that kind to be seen as a timeless classic. There was so much that I loved about this episode. I loved how the Mexican folk influences are presented in this episode. I loved that it showed a lot more about the Riveras’ family history. I loved the interactions between Manny and the original El Tigre, a character who was pretty much the same as Manny, while his indecisiveness towards being a hero or a villain ate him alive. I loved the family reunion between the current generation of Riveras and the older generations. I loved how much of a threat Sartana of the Dead came of as, using the forgotten dead as her weapon to devastate Miracle City and all. I loved the action scenes, which included Manny learning to summon an ancient tiger spirit through the first El Tigre.
Most of all, I loved how much heart that this special had (then again, the same can be said for any other episode like “Stinking Badges!” for example). It’s easy to tell that the writers/creators had a lot of thought put into this episode, given that Gutierrez’s artistic influence primarily come from Mexican folk.
Does it deserve more recognition?: Oh yes. I’m not even going to hesitate on that question. I can probably understand why El Tigre doesn’t get as much talk after 11 years since it first aired. While this show put Gutierrez and Equihua on the map, The Book of Life solidified their success in the animation industry. There are still a good number of fans still dedicated to this show, which I am aware of. It’s not that I think El Tigre doesn’t get any recognition…rather, I think this show doesn’t get enough recognition. I’d even argue that we might’ve never had The Book Life without El Tigre getting the greenlight from Nickelodeon. Perhaps a possible revival of this product doesn’t get enough demand because people are already asking for a lot of other animated action or serialized shows, but come on…most of us would rather bring back some shows that already had a proper ending (i.e. Danny Phantom, Kim Possible, and American Dragon: Jake Long), but there’s little demand to bring back an animated series that didn’t realize its complete vision?
So, if you’re not familiar with this animated series, then I suggest getting into it at a later point, ‘cause I know you don’t want to feel like you missed out on so much. Alright, that’s all I can say in behalf of this series. Next month, I will cover an animated show that’s a little less in familiar territory.
Top 50 animated music videos. I already gave an introduction and there’s nothing else I can add to it, so let’s get to my list:
Steel’s Top 50 Animated Music Videos
Time for the first interlude of the review: here are five animated music videos that missed the cut, but are worth mentioning:
Now let’s get to the final set of honorable mentions for this segment of the review before moving on…:
…and that wraps up the first half of my list. Sooner or later, I’ll have the upper second half out of the way.
I now have some free time on my hands after finishing up with my past few music reviews on this blog, which means that I can get one of my planned projects underway. Then again, this took a while mainly because I didn't actually finish forming my list beforehand, forming it ended up being quite a long process. There was just so many good animated music videos that I had to cut from my list proper. It has gotten to the point where I decided to create a long list of animated music videos that I couldn't keep on my top 50 but had a very close match nonetheless. As you guys can tell, I've had to watch a lot of animated music videos, and I mean A LOT. So, what you guys are going to see of my final list is a list that'll still be subject to change.
The review is going to be split into three parts: the first 25 with 10 honorable mentions and then the last 25 with the 11 last honorable mentions to the videos that didn't make my cut, and this just the topic to get you guys started. I'll post the first part of the review on Sunday or Monday. As a way of getting things started, here's a short list of things to expect from my list proper:
-The following singers/groups have more than one video on my list:
Weird Al Yankovic (2)
-The most recent video on my list is from 2017.
-The oldest video on my list is from 1985.
-Animated music films do not count. Consider all of Interstella 5555 as my #0.
-Lastly, below are 61 songs/music videos that I've long-listed, but do not appear on my top 50. Of all 61 of these songs, 21 of them are my honorable mentions:
Wow, I sure am in a music reviewing mood this month. Just a week ago, I reviewed the year-end lists for 2012 and 2013. A few days ago, I doubled down on the top 20 Alternative hit songs of that week, and now I have to review the top 20 Latin songs of this week, as per requested by @More as overlord. I have to say that I was not expecting More in wanting to challenge me as a music critic while this kind of request isn’t coming from Clappy, Wumbo, Burgerpants, or any other music fan on this website.
So, let’s talk about a genre on the Billboard charts that now has a growing market on the general pop charts: Latin music. Latin pop, reggaeton, bachata, Regional Mexican music, you name it. I knew from the start that talking about these 20 songs isn’t going to be easy, but like I should say, it is part of the request that More offered for me. The most basic excuse I have towards why it’s hard for me to get into Latin music is that I don’t speak or read the language(s) of Latin music, but because I don’t understand the language of a foreign genre doesn’t mean that I’ll be unable to enjoy any song from the particular style of music. Take another foreign genre of music for example: K-Pop, which has some of the most devoted fans on this website. In fact, there are a lot of Latin gems from past years: “Smooth,” “Maria Maria,” heck, anything else from Santana, “Livin’ la Vida Loca,” “La Tortura,” “Bailamos,” “No Me Queda Mas…” and that’s pretty much it (there’s also a good chunk of songs by Javeria Mena if we’re talking gems from this current decade). I’m not so much of an open book on Latin music, but good songs like those prove its significance.
In the end of forming my list, ranking the songs and evaluating them didn’t turn out to be hard. However, I was already feeling desperate to look up translated lyrics so I could give each song some good enough insight. So, what musical artists did I have to work with in my rankings? We’ll find out soon enough. Time for round three of my music reviews…
Spring 2018 Top 20 Latin Songs Ranked
Week of: 06/02/2018
…You know, the Alternative Songs chart is not looking so good right now.
Yes, as much as I didn’t want to admit it and after a few times that I came to the defense of some hit Alternative songs from last year, I think the Alt charts are experiencing a serious drought as of current. That is why I decided to cave into doing a review of the Alternative top 20 after the thought of doing a review for that has been in the back of my head for a while.
There are a variety of reasons why I decided to review this week’s Alternative top 20: one reason is because I thought it would be interesting to share my thoughts on certain songs, but I also want to make a huge point across, which has to do with the chart’s current trends: the Alternative Songs chart has went from being predominantly rock to nearly being predominantly pop. It’s gotten to the point where names like AJR, Alice Merton, and lovelytheband are also receiving #1’s on that chart. I don’t think that’s entirely a bad thing because keep in mind, alternative is not a genre that only applies to rock music. Yes, the Alternative Songs chart used to be called Modern Rock Tracks, but for a reason, the name of the chart has changed. Slowly after each year since the mid-2000s, the Alt charts are becoming more and more diverse in styles.
Contrary to what you guys may think, I don’t think this week’s chart looks as bad as any week that is way back from 2000-2003 or 2008 and I don’t want to have to pull out a page from those years unless you really want for me to prove my stance. There are genuinely good indie pop songs as there are also bad ones. However, most of the mediocre or bad ones are merely just first impressions. Indie rock is also assorted with either good, mediocre, or bad songs that are on the chart. Take “Going to Mars” by Judah & The Lion for example. The song is apparently so bad that it just fell off the chart this week. Considering that it was at #24 the previous week, it’s an understatement to say that it fell hard. There are a lot of other songs that I know you guys would like to see me talk about, like “Best Friend,” which dropped off the chart not too long ago, but my commentary is limited to the top 20…along with some bonus songs at the end. However, if you have any questions about any charting Alt song that I didn’t cover, then feel free to ask for my thoughts on one or more. Feedback towards my rankings is also well-appreciated.
Spring 2018 Alternative Songs Top 20 Ranked
Week of: 05/26/2018
And now, here’s some bonus commentary on five specific songs below the top 20 that I recommend listening to:
Oh, and that Truth or Square defensive rant is still on its way. I finished this review yesterday, but I decided to upload it today, just so you all know.
Steel’s Bottom/Top 10 Hit Songs of 2012
You know, for a pretty iconic year in pop, I can’t adore this year more than I should. The good stuff that year was really spectacular, but…the bad stuff that year was also really, really bad. And I’m not saying this just towards the year-end list, I’m also saying this towards every other notable song that charted during the 2012 chart season. For every gem like “Midnight City,” “Dark Side,” “Lonely Boy,” “No Church in the Wild,” “Thinkin’ ‘Bout You,” “Love on Top,” “Safe & Sound,” and “Skyfall,” you also have trash like “Sorry for Party Rocking,” “The Hardest Ever,” “Faded,” “Turn on the Lights,” “Princess of China,” “Give Me All Your Luvin’,” that disappointing comeback single from No Doubt, and “Truck Yeah…” by Tim McGraw. Back on the topic of the year-end list, one thing I should say is expect some hot takes as I go through my choices for the best and worst hits from that list.
Boyfriend – Justin Bieber (#11)
Sexy and I Know It – LMFAO (Backwash dishonorable mention)
We Found Love – Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris (Backwash dishonorable mention)
Drank in My Cup – Kirko Bangz
Brokenhearted – Karmin
The Motto – Drake featuring Lil Wayne
Blow Me (One Last Kiss) – P!nk
Wanted – Hunter Hayes
Back in Time – Pitbull
We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together – Taylor Swift
Work Out – J. Cole (#11)
Rolling in the Deep – Adele (Backwash honorable mention)
Die Young – Kesha
So Good – B.o.B.
Paradise – Coldplay
Mercy – G.O.O.D. Music (Kanye West, Big Sean, Pusha T, and 2 Chainz)
Love You Like a Love Song – Selena Gomez & The Scene
Glad You Came – The Wanted
We Are Young – fun. Featuring Janelle Monae
Set Fire to the Rain – Adele
Steel’s Bottom/Top 10 Hit Songs of 2012
Now that we’ve moved onto the year 2013 in pop, let’s break down every other year from this decade that I’ve covered, including this particular year. So, where does 2013 end up?
Yep, right at the top. Clearly enough, there’s a lot of good things I could say about 2013 in pop music, but before I get to that, I’m going to compare notes with every other pop year I’ve covered. The year-end list for 2014 sucked, with a vast scarcity of excellent pop songs. 2016 had a lot of bad stuff this year which was made it interesting compared to 2014, and it’s such a pity that it came before 2015, a year in which proved to be a major step-up. 2010: a little over the same level of quality as 2016. 2012: A strangely iconic year with a great amount of both good and bad hits. 2011: An immense disparity in its level of quality compared to 2010. 2017 was pop at its most diverse so far into this decade, whilst being provided with a lot of gems. 2015 was a major step-up from the lackluster year that it succeeded. However, it leaves a deep scar when it comes to songs like “Dear Future Husband,” “Watch Me,” and…”Marvin Gaye.”
My rankings are very much like the typical Star Trek movie rankings, except it’s odd over even in this case. Some of you folks probably feel baffled that I consider 2013’s year-end list to be the best out of what we got so far into the decade. However, my appreciation towards this year in pop has to do with the fact that it’s a great year musically. 2013’s year-end list is just scratching the surface when it comes to brilliant music that came out that year. We got great albums from names including and not limited to Queens of the Stone Age, CHVRCHES, Daft Punk, The National, Janelle Monae, Arcade Fire (…speaking to those who are a bigger fan of this act much more than I am), and to a lesser extent, Kanye West. Another good way to describe 2013 in music is that it’s a year that’s so good, My Bloody Valentine came back to release a new album after 22 years.
2013’s year-end list is full of great pop songs and it’s gotten to the point where I decided to extend my list of ten honorable mentions into a list of twenty. Of course, I’ll have to talk about the B.O. from that year first. Why I ranked 2013 over 2015 is mainly because most of these songs are boring bad than irritatingly bad, so my #1 will be my most docile choice compared to my other number one worst crowners. Anyways, bottom 10 hit songs of 2013, let’s go:
Cruise (remix) – Florida Georgia Line featuring Nelly (#11)
#thatpower – will.i.am featuring Justin Bieber
One More Night – Maroon 5 (Backwash dishonorable mention)
Harlem Shake – Baauer
Pour It Up – Rihanna
Blurred Lines – Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell Williams and T.I.
The Fox (What Does the Fox Say?) – Ylvis
Let Her Go – Passenger
Wrecking Ball – Miley Cyrus
I’m Different – 2 Chainz
Thrift Shop – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Wanz (#11)
Adorn – Miguel (Backwash honorable mention)
Mirrors – Justin Timberlake
The Way – Ariana Grande featuring Mac Miller
Try – P!nk
Treasure – Bruno Mars
My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light Em’ Up) – Fall Out Boy
A-Team – Ed Sheeran
Carry On – fun.
Wagon Wheel – Darius Rucker
It’s Time – Imagine Dragons (Backwash honorable mention)
22 – Taylor Swift
Some Nights – fun. (Backwash honorable mention)
Fuckin Problems – A$AP Rocky featuring Drake, 2 Chainz, and Kendrick Lamar
Berzerk – Eminem
Die Young – Kesha (Backwash honorable mention)
Body Party – Ciara
Power Trip – J. Cole featuring Miguel
Radioactive – Imagine Dragons
Highway Don’t Care – Tim McGraw featuring Taylor Swift and Keith Urban
I won't be planning on doing any more year-end Hot 100 reviews sooner or later, but except some more music-related reviews from me.
It’s been nearly two months, and we should all be aware that FOP has officially stopped its run since the news of Butch Hartman leaving Nickelodeon came around not too long ago. I still think it’s a pity that it would end right on Season 10, but it’s also a breath of fresh air for the future of the show since it ended before it could get much, much worse. Of course, I am going to continue my reviewing series and this month’s topic is Season 3. Anyways, welcome to another segment of every Fairly OddParents episode reviewed and I’m going judge on whether S3’s standards are higher or lower than Season 2’s as we start off with…
21a. Ruled Out: Timmy is tired of his parents being so protective of him so he wishes that they would care less. However, they become so totally carefree that not only does it affect the Turners’ living conditions, but Timmy’s godparents eventually start to become careless as well.
What I really like about this episode…is that there’s this something that really hits me. In fact, the episode has this really frank moral that just hits you when you didn’t expect it first thing. I wasn’t actually so big on this episode until I did some re-evaluation, which was when I realized how subtle its message turned out to be in hindsight. Imagine if you were all the way back in the 2000s (or otherwise, a child if you were much older at that time) watching this episode, knowing how overbearing your parents can be, much like Timmy’s parents. When Timmy makes his wish, it turns out to be reasonable enough as it makes his parents happy even when they’re acting so carless about their lives, which really feels like the point of view that a child would’ve wanted to live in. Then, midway into the episode, Timmy realizes that his parents had every reason to care too much when his parents turn into complete filthy slackers.
Likewise with “Christmas Everyday!,” the episode has the kind of wish with a drawback that sneaks past. Now let’s focus on the episode’s main message: Timmy’s parents tend to be overprotective of their son because they love him and they don’t want him in any danger that would eventually lead him face to face with a sewer gator, which so happens to part of the climax. As for the rest of the climax, Timmy doesn’t try to get Cosmo and Wanda’s help to fix the wish as putting himself at risk in order to snap his parents back into reality, because they love their son so much, was cancelling out the magic. That in particular really supports the episode’s message, because when you think about it for a moment, just to reiterate, while the wish did transform the behaviors of Timmy’s parents, it didn’t change the fact that they love their son.
Of course, the episode ends with Timmy being grounded, in form of being caged up with colon-cleaning food and educational television, but that’s the most that we can expect for the episode to end off with. So far, we’re off to a very good start. This episode was pretty close to the excellent ranking, but in the end, the episode was entertaining and well-written, but mostly entertaining, yay entertainment! Great.
21b. That’s Life!: Timmy’s mom wants to grow an award-winning garden, (In Mr. Turner’s case, he wants her to beat the Dinklebergs, who are also participating in the contest), so Timmy wishes that his mom’s garden was full of life. It’s so full of life that it brings back Timmy’s dead pet gerbil, Eddie, who was believed to have run away during summer camp…camp….camp…
It’s another charming episode, but it doesn’t hit close too home as “Ruled Out” has. It has a pretty clear message about taking better care of anyone and anything. And as we eventually learn from this episode, it’s not just Timmy who can’t seem to take care of his pets as his parents were supposed to take care of Eddie while he was at summer camp…camp….camp. There are also some weird moments here and there, like with Mrs. Turner using canned yams for the judging, and the end where it reveals that Timmy’s other pets had the same fate as Eddie and got buried in the same garden. As for some of the jokes, the one dark joke with Mr. Turner offering the Dinklebergs to give Mrs. Turner a “congratulatory hand touch” was pretty funny, as well as the whole “summer camp…camp…camp” gag.
It’s usually a tradition for me to send it off with the episode’s recurring gag, but I already mentioned it three times. It’s a great episode that’s not quite close to one of the greatest in the series. With that said, let’s move on to the next segment. Great.
22a. Shiny Teeth: Chip Skylark is going to be in a video for his big hit “My Shiny Teeth and Me” and just about every kid in Dimmsdale wants to have good enough teeth to be in the video with him. However, after Dr. Bender and Wendell learn about Chip and his perfect teeth, it ends up getting stolen. With help from the Tooth Fairy, Timmy now has to take Chip’s teeth back from the evil dentist so Chip could be in the music video.
This is yet another entertaining effort from the series’ first-half run. What I really liked about it was how Timmy and Chip’s friendship really developed. There was “Boys in the Band” which first featured Chip Skylark and had the type of episode plot centering about the misunderstanding about Timmy’s birthday, but at most, the episode was leading up to the character development in this episode, and it was handled very well. Sad for me to say, there aren’t as many memorable lines (maybe except for the bit with Chet Ubetcha thinking that there’s a boy trapped in a well), but I’ve enjoyed everything else from this episode. Word! …That means there isn’t much more I can say about the episode and so I have to cut this short. Good.
22b. Odd, Odd West: Timmy’s dad takes the Squirrely Scouts on a trip to an Old West themed attraction that was part of his childhood. Not long after, Doug Dimmadome and his construction company appear to be trying to tear down Dimmsdale Flats so that they could build a mini mall over it. In order to save his dad’s childhood memories, Timmy and his fairies travel back to the Old West to get the lost deed. When the deed is in the hands of Vicky the Kid, Timmy must face off against her in a duel as the Masked Stranger to get it back.
I’ll admit that I got something more about this than from “Shiny Teeth,” which is usually because this episode had some more memorable scenes, like the duel between Timmy and Vicky the Kid being a straightforward game of rock-paper-scissors, and you also got memorable jokes like the bit with the Squirrely Scouts doing first aid on Timmy’s dad, the “nobody reads the manual” gag, and this particular line: “It took being attacked by coyotes and being thrown in jail to realize my childhood stunk.” Despite that line, however, I thought the end was pretty bizarre with Timmy revealing the lost deed, before Mr. Turner ultimately decides to accept Dimmadome’s offer of $8 to tear down Dimmsdale Flats and the final scene that reveals that Chester left himself alone with a coyote so he could give it a “Beaten by Chester” badge.
It has its weird moments, but I can pass them up, because this is still a nearly great and entertaining episode at the end of the day. I could send off this review like normal, but going against my silly tradition is for yellow-bellies. Good.
23a. Microphony: It is summer break and Timmy can’t wait to spend it all with his family and without Vicky having to babysit…that is until the radio sponsors Vicky’s babysitting service, complete with a catchy jingle that compels the adults to let Vicky babysit their kids. As payback, Timmy wishes his treehouse was a radio station and for a microphone that would disguise his voice. As Double T, Timmy drives out Vicky out of business and promotes a summer full of family fun. However, when Vicky notices Cosmo, as the traffic copter, flying over to Timmy’s treehouse, she finds about his accountability and then uses the magical microphone to pretend that she’s Timmy behind the microphone to reveal the truth and call parents morons, which can’t be said on the radio, and it’s enough to make them form an angry mob right towards Timmy’s treehouse.
As you guys can tell by this rather lengthy summary, this episode has a good amount of plot details, which result into a very enjoyable segment overall. The beginning isn’t quite enjoyable, but the rest of the episode was pleasant enough. I also liked the kind of plot it was going for, preferably near the end where Timmy admits that he is Double T and he was using his radio broadcast to have families spend the rest of the summer together, which wasn’t a bad thing at all. Of course, Timmy still needs to prove that he didn’t call parents morons, on the radio, before the kids across Dimmsdale unquestionably point the blame to Vicky as she then gets arrested by the FCC. Yep, if you say moron on the radio and not on TV, it’ll definitely land you in jail. It’s a cartoon, so I don’t have to question that logic.
What adds to why I liked this episode a lot, other than the fairly catchy “Vicky Free Summer” song, is usually because the plot doesn’t lead to the kind where Timmy reveals he was lying, but to the kind of plot where Timmy reveals the truth that he needed to hide and Vicky getting karma for hijacking the magic microphone, as she was the one who said “all parents are morons” on the radio. Yeah, I’m mentioning that plot point quite a lot, and that’s because that’s the subject of what I’m sending off the review with. So, remember, you can only say moron on TV. Okay, I’m done, next segment. Great.
23b. So Totally Spaced Out: Mark comes to Earth and asks for Timmy’s help to come to Yugopotamia and defeat the planet’s greatest enemy that is the “special surprise inside.” The lifeforms, know as the Gigglepies, use their cuteness to brainwash other lifeforms by commercializing themselves in order to enslave a planet until they blow it up and move on to the next one.
If “Totally Spaced Out” was a step back from the first episode with Mark and his character reflection, then this third installment is a step back into a more interesting direction. The Gigglepies result into a group of very interesting villains you see, their distinct blend between cute and evil is foreshadowed before Timmy and his fairies are taken to Overlord Glee. Obviously so, it’s granted that Yugopotamians can’t stand anything cute and sweet, and not only do the Gigglepies make formidable enemies, they make the episode feel complete at the same time as their ridiculous cuteness making us want to take methamphetamines.
The subplot between Mark and Vicky doesn’t have much to write home about, but the central plot is still just as stout. However, the way the episode ends with the Gigglepies’ defeat is strange, I can assure, with the specific climax being when the Gigglepies are discovered to taste like manure. Because manure is a Yugopotamian delicacy, the Gigglepies are defeated by getting eaten alive. Then again, why should I acknowledge this so penitently? There are indeed a lot of people who are into something like that, one would jive.
A good amount of the episode’s humor is accomplished by the Gigglepies, because they are just so good enough to buy. Oh, and if you’re wondering if my tendency to rhyme for this review doesn’t make as much sense for me to do, need I remind you all of Mr. Enter’s Cramp Twins review? After all, who else would be writing all this up besides Steel the chemist Gigglepie with nerve? Now your mind is mine to serve. Batteries not included, nor is Steel’s sense of humor, each Steel Gigglepie accessory is sold separately, the buy two; get one free deal is available for purchase now, no strings attached, do not pass go, do not collect $200, buy us all or die. Great.
24. Love Struck!: After Trixie refuses to be Timmy’s valentine, and after being humiliated by just about every other girl (except Tootie) in Dimmsdale, Timmy wishes that they were put somewhere else. The two genders are now divided by a wall between two worlds known as Himmsdale and Hersdale. Because of the wish, Cupid’s magic is getting sucked completely dry and Timmy, who has full responsibility, must side with Cupid to restore the world to its former, loving glory.
Well, after perplexing you all with my review of the previous segment, here’s where I get completely back on-topic, because this episode, “Love Struck!...” is not good *explosion effect.* This is the very first episode to withstand a “Scum” ranking and it’s not so hard to figure out why. I didn’t want to have to use some of Mr. Enter’s words as my own, but he’s really on-point when he points out that one of the flaws that the episode suffers from is that it just flat out contradicts the message that “The Boy Who Would Be Queen” had produced. According to this episode, all boys like sports, greasy food, and poor hygiene while all girls like shopping and all things pretty – and that’s a load of bullocks.
Besides the fact that the episode assigns these gender roles, the 22-minute special is filled with other problems. This episode also has a couple of songs, and the most of what I can say about them is that they’re just so…forgettable and they feel so phoned in as well. The episode’s jokes don’t even work as well, given that the episode’s humor focuses on the cliché gender roles that are being portrayed, but that’s not all I have to say against the episode’s jokes. The whole “nothing fills the void” recurring gag, barely results into anything funny, and then there’s one joke near the end where Trixie, apparently, sarcastically proclaims how impressed she is about Timmy ignoring her and that she’s going to send him a bunch of messages on his answering machine. And yet, during the “The End” card, she does exactly that. It’s just a joke that really baffles me.
The end of the episode is pretty fine and dandy with Timmy sacrificing his arrow to decline Trixie’s offer to be her valentine so he can make Tootie happy, but almost of the episode was nowhere near as pleasant. As a first for one of FOP’s worst offerings, I suggest that you skip this, ‘cuz nothing about this episode fills in any sort of void. Scum.
25a. Cosmo Con: After Cosmo gets picked to host a super, special, and secret fairy convention and hosts it in Timmy’s bathroom. Much to Timmy’s dismay, Mr. Crocker is invited for a meal at the Turners’ household due to Timmy’s short attention span giving him an A.
This episode easily falls under the “fairly decent” category. This episode doesn’t provide anything much of value, but it still has its moments, like the bit with Timmy’s classmate freaking out over Timmy getting an A like it was against the natural order. Then there are some jokes that fall flat like the many bits with Mr. Turner thinking that Crocker is trying to hook up with his wife (including the recurring “mine!” gag), the wacky hijinks with Mr. Crocker during one scene at the convention, and the pretty obvious parody of Britney Spears: Britney Britney. It was a fine enough episode overall, but in the words of Mr. Turner, not mine! Okay.
25b. Wanda’s Day Off!: Wanda feels she deserves a break after one too many times where she has to save Timmy and Cosmo’s lives. Wanda takes a spa day while Cosmo is left to help with Timmy’s biology report. When Timmy wishes that he could tell what a cockroach is thinking about, he and Cosmo already realize that they can’t fix their own problems without Wanda, especially when the colony of cockroaches plot world domination.
Judging by how I wrote the summary, I consider this is as the kind of episode that knows that something is going to go wrong even in the case of something like when a particular character, Wanda, decides that she’s had enough of having to save Timmy and Cosmo’s lives for one day and just relax. Then again, it was already made easy to predict that Timmy’s wish would cause a colony of cockroaches to commit world domination. In retrospect, while it was also easy to predict that Wanda would eventually come back to clean the mess that Timmy and Cosmo have made, I liked how the episode didn’t go into the easy route of cutting Wanda’s spa day short or that she would end up seeing the dystopian Dimmsdale ruled by cockroaches right away.
Even if I wasn’t a big fan of the episode’s plot, some of the jokes really make up for it, like these particular dialogue quotes: “Oh, for the love of Pete!” “Who’s Pete, someone I should know about?” and “I love you two, but you are idiots!” “But we’re yours idiots!” And lastly, there’s the joke leading up to the reveal of the mess made by Timmy’s wish, whereas Timmy and Cosmo were hiding inside a replica of Timmy’s room, I thought that was pretty subtle. Overall, this episode has its solid moments, despite a plot that’s nearly standard in my eyes. Good.
26a. Odd Jobs: Timmy wishes that his dad would have a cool job in order to make him happy and not get laughed at by kids. Two disasters result into Mr. Turner getting a job as an astronaut, which actually succeeded, but now Timmy fears that he’ll never be able to see his dad again.
When it comes to dad-centric episodes in general, I would consider this as one of the best that I know of. Of course, it’s second-best, only behind “Super Bike,” but still, I found this episode to be really entertaining and charming all the same. The most of what I can say about this episode though is the climax where Mr. Turner tells his son that he’s on a mission to Uranus. Then, before Mr. Turner gets launched into space, Timmy convinces him that he doesn’t need a cool job to be a cool dad, which is an easily heartwarming moment.
On the subject of the episode’s humor, I thought some slapstick moments with Mr. Turner’s cool job options were amusing, as were the Cooljobs.wand scenes with Mr. Turner clicking on Cosmo only to injure him in some way. After all’s said and done, I can conclude that this is one of S3’s greatest. It may or may not make my top 5, but what’s important is that Uranus is a planet, who knew? Great.
26b. Movie Magic: Timmy decides to become an award-winning filmmaker so that Trixie can actually talk to him. After the first film ends up being a disaster except for his friends, Timmy decides to make another movie with the help of his fairies and Sylvester Calzone. Sadly, Timmy’s friends feel left out with the old movie being left in the cutting room floor.
It’s a yet another episode centered around Timmy trying to impress Trixie, and the episode should feel tedious because of that distinction…but I’d be darned if I didn’t say that this episode was still hilarious regardless. The movie that Timmy made with his pals was hilarious, Tad and Chad’s film that put an Arnold Schwarzenegger parody into the story of Hamlet was hilarious, the mock-up of Sylvester Stallone was not only hilarious, but he also very much made the episode. The episode even delivers a pretty good message when Timmy decides to submit his old film for the Dimmadance Film Festival when he realizes that nothing really beats the time that he spent with his friends.
The episode ends with Timmy winning the Dimmy for the film’s sheer hilarity, but Trixie still ignores him since he won for comedy, which is, according to her, one of the lowest forms of entertainment next to animation (that in particular is a joke that I thought was pretty funny), before she, Tad, and Chad decide to become devoted to rock stars. Despite that though, I still enjoyed the episode a lot so don’t think I’m being such a critic. And yet considering that I am a critic… *starts punching self* Great.
27-29. Abra-Catastrophe!: One day, Timmy wakes up to an anniversary party by Cosmo, Wanda, and his fairy friends, celebrating a year’s worth of Timmy keeping his godparents a secret. One gift Timmy receives is a magic anniversary muffin that can grant even a rule-free wish when bitten into it. After a rousing flashback detailing how Timmy got his fairies, Timmy wishes that his parents were more honest with him before heading to school, whereas the magic muffin already falls out of his hands. However, it isn’t until Bippy, a caged monkey, takes a bite out of the muffin and wishes for the entire Earth to be made into his vision. Due to this wish, apes rule the Earth, Jorgen reassigns fairies to monkey children, and humans are on the run from being dissected by the apes. Timmy now has to travel to Chimpsdale to get back the magic muffin and restore the Earth to its original glory before something else happens. (which I’m going to talk about for the rest of the review…)
Even despite the way that the TV movie ends with a typical press of the reset button, that doesn’t change the fact that it left us with a lot of interesting details about the nature of the series and about its characters. This special was interesting and entertaining all the way through, we get to see some excellent character establishment for Timmy, Mr. Crocker played a fantastic role as a villain as the special proves how much of a threat he can really be, the humor was solid was usual, and all in all, this special just served a really great plot. While not perfect, this TV movie still served as the epitome for just about everything we could ever ask for in a television special as big as this. Oh wow, I’ve spend a large amount of time talking about this TV movie, so I better congratulate myself with this magic muffin- ack! It’s still got that awful taste. Wait a minute…yes, I can feel the magic pulsing right through me! I wish….I wish I can finally move on to the next episode! Excellent.
30a. Sleepover and Over: After a heated argument between Chester and A.J. over Crash Nebula and the Crimson Chin, they start their own sleepover and if Timmy doesn’t show up to both, they won’t consider him as his friend anyone. And so this leaves Timmy to use Cosmo and Wanda’s help in order to be at two places at once. Because both Chester and A.J.’s sleepovers fell flat, Timmy devises a plan to fix their friendship.
I can say right away that I really like the concept of this episode with Timmy having to go back and forth to keep his two friends satisfied. However, the real kicker is when Timmy starts to set up his plan to get his two friends to reconcile…only for him to wind up in deal danger. Shortly after, Chester and A.J. are left with no option than to work together in order to save their friend in a cat suit. Like so, the three friends are reunited and continue the sleepover at Timmy’s treehouse. Besides that though, the episode ends on a bit of a haphazard note when Timmy shows off a feature of his cat suit that causes the junkyard dogs to come back while Cosmo and Wanda witness Jimmy the cat losing 3 of his lives before he scratches up Cosmo.
I still think it’s a great episode with some very decent jokes like the parental block bit, and the gag with Cosmo losing his friends named after Jimmy Neutron characters (except Jimmy) in such little time. Hopefully the rest of you really liked this segment, ‘cuz I’d be insulted if you didn’t. Great.
30b. Mother Nature: Mrs. Turner becomes Dimmsdale’s new weather forecaster. However, any weather forecaster who gets it wrong is run out of town by an angry mob, so Timmy wishes that his mom was always right about the weather. Unfortunately, Mrs. Turner becomes a celebrity and doesn’t have enough time to spend at home with Timmy and his dad, so Timmy decides to convince her to quit, but the only way for Mrs. Turner to cut her contract is to get herself fired or run out by an angry mob, so she then predicts a series of natural disasters that end up being true in due to Timmy’s wish.
It’s a charming enough episode while it has some hit or miss jokes. Some moments that got a kick out of me was the one line from Mr. Turner, where he tells Timmy that he had a 15 second period of not knowing where he was, and then there was the reactions Timmy had towards his dad’s mom puppet. The episode ends on a bittersweet note as Timmy and his mom are enjoying a fishing trip while Timmy’s dad is being chased by an angry mob, due to his mom puppet. There isn’t much else for me to say, but just to reiterate, I found this a simple and charming enough episode. Good.
31a. The Crimson Chin Meets Mighty Mom and Dyno Dad!: Timmy returns to his messy room after fighting crime in the comic book world. However, the Nega-Chin escaped from the other world and starts wreaking havoc in Dimmsdale alongside the Chin’s other arch-enemies (of course, not before having Cosmo and Wanda set some certain conditions). Timmy wishes that his parents were once again Mighty Mom and Dyno Dad in order to defeat the Nega-Chin, his cronies, and send him back to the comic book world.
For starters, I liked how the series introduces us to Nega-Chin. Nega-Chin himself served as an interesting villain, let alone an interesting character much like the Crimson Chin. The fight scenes in the episode also had me sold even after Nega-Chin gets rid of MM&DD’s powers with nega-vision. Of course, from there, Timmy wishes for a deus ex machina, but I can even pass that up because the different generational versions of the Crimson Chin were interesting, and the fight scenes with them were just as amusing to watch. If there’s one good joke I can acknowledge from this episode, it’s this particular dialogue quote: “You can’t swear, only the super-edgy 1985 Crimson Chin can swear!” “Yeah, and I got cancelled for it!” In the end, this is a pretty good episode, but it isn’t too good, so you don’t need to shield your eyes. Good.
31b. Engine Blocked: Mr. Turner is experiencing a mid-life crisis and so he and his son set out to find something to make him feel young again. Mr. Turner eventually takes notice of a real Striker Z being put up for sale by Vicky. Unfortunately for Timmy, his dad has become obsessive over his new car that he’s not giving himself any time to spend with Timmy. This prompts for Timmy to then wish that he was the Striker Z, in addition to being able to talk, drive himself, and come assisted with his two fairies in the form of two fuzzy dice. Meanwhile, Vicky sets out to steal back the car so that she can strike it rich with Doug Dimmadome.
This is yet another very dimma-decent episode in my eyes. There are some moments where I find myself appreciating Mr. Turner’s character and other times where I dimma-don’t. For the majority of the episode, Timmy wants to spend some time with his dimma-dad, only for him to dimma-do whatever chores he needs to dimma-do, and only for him to obsess over his Striker Z as he couldn’t let Timmy ride in it. The plot was fairly tedious at first, but the rest of the episode really makes up for that, preferably near the end where Mr. Turner comes to rescue his Striker Z as he’s only concerned about the thought of Timmy being in the trunk. Shortly after, Mr. Turner tells Timmy that he couldn’t let him ride in it because it’s a dimma-dangerous, screaming metal death-trap.
The episode ends pleasantly so with Timmy playing catch with Mr. Turner like he wanted to since the start of the episode. Some other dimma-delights from this episode include Doug Dimmadome, of course, along with the wacky chase scene at the climax in general. That should sum up all my thoughts on the segment pretty nicely. Well, now my work here is dimma-done. Good.
32a. Most Wanted Wish: Timmy is tired of being completely left out at school and at home, so he wishes that everyone would want him. However, when every other fairy in Fairy World want Timmy to be their godchild and are willing to fight over him in a Butt-Kicking Fairy Texas Cage Match, courtesy of Jorgen’s rules, Cosmo and Wanda have to win the match in order to keep Timmy as their godchild.
…Oh, was I supposed to review this episode? I wanted Timmy to review this one! This is one of few of those past episodes from the first half of the series that I didn’t think has aged so well. The main premise is a bit of a spirit-breaker when it comes down to the fact that Timmy feels so unwanted in his life, even by his parents. Although, this isn’t dreadful compared to…that one episode I won’t cover until two more seasons. And then there’s the end in which Timmy decides that after facing the risk of losing his fairies in a Texas cage match, he now feels that he’s better off being ignored. …I mean, the moral that this episode is going for is that being wanted all the time has its quirks and its setbacks as the wish didn’t fall apart until Timmy appeared to be at the top of FBI’s most wanted and the whole predicament with Jorgen setting up himself, Cosmo, Wanda, and every other fairy in a Texas cage match.
There’s more to the end with Timmy wishing that was ignored, which causes for Cosmo and Wanda to be distanced away from him all the way in France, where they end up being served as a meal. Yeah, that makes a whole lot of sense. And even after all that Timmy has gone through to make himself realize that he’s tired of being wanted all the time and would rather be ignored most of the time, I can’t help but shake the feeling about the way the episode starts by establishing how unwanted Timmy is, alongside with the tasteless running gag of the characters obsessing over a single rock.
A small amount of the jokes did work for me, like Timmy and Cosmo scoffing about how Wanda thought an escape pod to Texas and back to Timmy’s room was a dumb wish, and the “you shot me in the ear!” line. This episode is definitely not so contemptible, but I still don’t this to be a very enjoyable episode. Meh.
32b. This Is Your Wish: Mama Cosma invites his son Cosmo, including Timmy and Wanda, to a fancy dinner. As it turns out, Cosmo is put in a game show hosted by Billy Crystal Ball and it reflects on Cosmo’s dumbest and reckless moments from his past. These past disasters even put Cosmo’s job as Timmy’s godparent in jeopardy as the live audience have to vote either to let Timmy keep his godparent or for Cosmo to move back with Mama Cosma.
From my experience in watching this episode, it gets more interesting the more that the plot progresses. It’s hard to find Cosmo’s past moments as funny, from Cosmo’s childhood to Cosmo’s time in the Fairy Academy with Jorgen’s turmoil from losing all his 5 stars worth of honor. One moment I did enjoy though, was when Wanda tries to show the audience a clip of Cosmo being a good fairy by trying to save Timmy’s life, and hers. That moment in particular involved Wanda and Mama Cosma fighting over the footage, pausing it and un-pausing it until the end of the clip reveals that one small section of the train tracks is separate from the rest of the tracks because it’s in quicksand – that in which I thought was a fairly subtle joke. Other than, I also liked this particular line: “See? Cosmo actually saved us from a horrible, cliché death.”
The rest of the episode was enough to be savored with an acceptable enough ranking from me, as Timmy then wishes that he had some clips to show the audience, specifically those that show why Cosmo does a good job as a godparent: he makes him laugh, and he’s always around to put him in high spirits despite whatever misfortunes he causes. The audience ultimately decides to let Timmy keep his fairy when they realize that Cosmo would be so much more of a nuisance if he stayed in Fairy World for the rest of his life. Even Mama Cosma voted to allow Cosmo to stay with Timmy and Wanda, if it means that Cosmo would continue to inadvertently torture Wanda. Then, of course, the episode ends with Cosmo fluking Timmy’s wish to return home by conjuring back his three-headed, fire-breathing dragon, Snowball.
At the end of the day, this was a very charming episode, but there were just so many other endearing episodes that stroke more of a chord on me, so I’m feeling a strong 7 out of 10 for this episode. And before I move on to the next episode, I’m feeling like wrapping it up with a three-headed, fire-breathing hydra, because I’m weird like that. *Snowball appears out of thin-air* Good.
33a. Beddy Bye: Because Timmy is tired of missing out on all the cool stuff that happens late at night, he wishes that everyone didn’t have to sleep. Timmy eventually learns the hard way about how important sleep is when Cosmo and Wanda start acting all cranky. Timmy must come to the help of the Sandman, a.k.a. the Mattress King, in order to fix the wish.
This is the type of episode in which you know almost everything that happens all the way through. The presence of the Sandman’s character and the entire sequence with Timmy seeing what the world’s like late at night prevented the plot from feeling any thinner while still being seriously predictable. The moral is just really straightforward: we all need sleep or the world would be imbalanced. There are some moments from Cosmo and Wanda that I liked, but some moments from them were also pretty obnoxious, even if understandably so. This episode is just a hard “meh.” What especially doesn’t help in bringing up my rank is that Nickelodeon would use to play this episode to death. There’s nothing else for me to add to this, so blah, blah, blah, your needs. …Wait; was that joke already been used? Meh.
33b. The Grass is Greener: Mr. Turner is upset that the Dinklebergs have nicer things than they do, but he and Mrs. Turner admit that they wouldn’t ever trade their son for the things that the Dinklebergs have. Timmy overhears their conversation and mishears it, thinking that they’re better off without him. Timmy tells his fairies that he’s running away from home, and so they poof him to a carnival. Later on, Timmy wishes to be a carnie, a good one at that. Afterwards, Timmy appears to enjoy the life of a carnie…that is until the other carnies want to give him a piece of their mind.
And now I’ve come across a segment that’s far, FAR better than the last one. Timmy thinks his parents are better off without him so he decides to run away from home before landing himself at a carnival, before he learns the hard way that he shouldn’t have run away. The plot is very simple but it’s also very efficient once you delve into it more. What makes this episode feel so important to me is that there aren’t any particularly dumb moments, not even from Timmy’s parents, who are often cited to have some of the most moronic moments in the show in general. This episode carries out the notion that no matter how moronic Timmy’s parents can be at times, they’ll always love their son. I’ll go a little more into that in a moment, so how about I talk about the central plot with Timmy being a carnie?
Like I’ve already pointed out, part of the episode focuses on Timmy realizing on how good he is being a carnie to the point where he feels that he should stay with the carnival. This gives Cosmo and Wanda the impression that Timmy doesn’t need them. Afterwards, Timmy ends up in a huge pickle when the other carnies (one of which looks somewhat like Illumi’s Gittarackur disguise from Hunter x Hunter) chase him around, trying to take him out. That’s where the episode’s message starts beginning to get its point across when Timmy finds himself in danger. As the chase scene goes on, Timmy gets in a pink and green hot balloon until it crash lands all the way back to the Turners’ household. As Timmy sees himself back home, he also sees his parents from the window, crying. From there, Timmy realizes that his parents don’t think they’re better off without him, they really miss him.
Right on cue, the carnies appear right in front of Timmy, telling him his parents do miss him, before Cosmo and Wanda reappear to tell Timmy that the entire carnival stint was, of course, a setup to teach him an important lesson and that Timmy was never really in any danger as they were disguised as pink and green objects the whole time they were gone. On top of that, all the carnies turned out to be fairies (except the alligator) and that other godkids with their godparents have turned up to their domain, whenever they felt like running away from home. So afterwards, Timmy comes back inside his house to face his parents, both are really happy to see him again, safe and all. Of course, he’s grounded for running away, but Timmy is happy enough to be with his parents again and that Mr. Turner gets to rub it in Mr. Dinkleberg’s face that the Dinklebergs don’t have a son like he does…and that brings me to address one noteworthy line from the show in general…
“We have something that the Dinklebergs don’t have – and that’s you.” It was something along the lines of that, but anyhow, that’s hands down of the best lines from the series in a general sense, as it not only cements the point that I made about Timmy’s parents a few lines ago, but the fact that the message was leading up to that really makes up for how predictable the plot can be. It’s predictable, and the moral is really straightforward too, but unlike “Beddy Bye,” the message manages to really hit hard. Overall, I loved this episode because of the sentiments that I can attain from it. This episode is so good to the point where it doesn’t need rabies to taste any better. Excellent.
34a. The Secret Origin of Denzel Crocker!: It’s March 15th, which is the day where Mr. Crocker is usually at his worst. After a day’s worth of hard discipline from Crocker, Timmy wonders what made Mr. Crocker feel so upset, so he uses his Time Scooter to go back to a single decade until he lands at Crocker’s childhood, which was the last time that he ever felt happy in his life. Timmy aims to undo the events culminating into the worst day of Crocker’s life…but not before he eventually learns that Crocker not only used to have fairy godparents, but Cosmo and Wanda used to be Crocker’s fairies.
This episode is a guaranteed classic, just to say it right off the bat. A major part of why I really appreciated this episode has to do with the fact that this is more than just a character establishment episode for Crocker. This is a major developmental episode for the world and characters of the series itself. While Crocker is the central focus of this episode, this episode does a really fine job establishing his character. Take note of when I talked about “Abra Catastrophe!” with Crocker proving himself to be a legitimate threat as a villain. While this 22-minute special aired before the television movie, pretend that you were watching these episodes by production order. You’d be wondering exactly why Crocker is so obsessed with fairies in the first place, why he wants to prove the existence of fairies, and why he would want to harness the fairies’ magic for pure evil. This episode has that answer to all those questions…except maybe that last one.
Given the nature of this episode, you do not just end up feeling sympathetic for Crocker, you find yourself feeling really, really, really bad for Crocker near the end of the episode, when it comes right down to exactly why March 15th was the worst day of his life: he ends up losing his fairies and getting his memories erased about fairies (that is until he finds the tracking device that Timmy left in that timeframe) when Cosmo foolishly reveals himself as a fairy, and he ends up getting humiliated in front of a crowd of Dimmsdale citizens ridden with amnesia. It’s harsh especially considering that Crocker was to be honored for saving another kid’s life the day before (Timmy’s dad as a kid, to specify).
I also just really appreciate the whole concept about Timmy trying to go back in time to see what went wrong with Crocker’s life, not just because of his character establishment, but also because we get to see some backstory from every other character, including Cosmo and Wanda, who appear to have not remembered so much of what happened on March 15th 1972: a foreshadowing moment that leads up to the reveal of Cosmo and Wanda being Crocker’s fairies that long ago, and the reveal that they don’t remember having been Crocker’s fairies at all or anything much about the worst day of Crocker’s life due to using the forgeticine on their own selves. Then we also get some more background on Timmy’s parents, who become madly in love with each other after Mrs. Turner got dumped by Sheldon Dinkleberg. We get to learn how and why Chet Ubetcha is so short, and we learn that Principal Waxelplax used to have a crush on Crocker. And mind you, this all took place during the 80’s.
There is a lot of interesting ground to cover from this very well-fleshed-out special. There’s not one worthless moment from it, and you know what else? This is the kind of episode that is perfect in so many ways that it is currently my biggest contender for the best of the season. Excellent.
35a. Kung Timmy: Timmy wishes that he had the powers of kung-fu in order to take back everything that he and his parents lost to Francis (including their house). After Timmy tells Francis that he’s ready for a challenge, Francis reveals that he is an expert at martial arts.
We have now come across an episode with Francis as the central antagonist (compared to his side-role as an antagonist in “Timvisible”), and while I consider this a very good example of those type of FOP episodes, “Kung Timmy” also happens to be a notoriously well-loved episode from most fans across the board. I’d say it’s usually due to Tootie’s presence, but this one of many episodes where its heart really shows. I wouldn’t say that this is a huge favorite, but it’s still definitely one of S3’s finest efforts.
The episode starts off simple with Francis pounding Timmy for his lunch money, until Timmy’s dad decides to intervene and ends up losing his car and the deed to the house, resulting in Timmy and his parents to live inside the treehouse. The next day, Timmy’s dad talks his son into fighting his own battles and gives him a kung fu book, which contains a very important detail regarding the episode’s moral with the number one rule in kung fu being that it must be used as means of defense and never for vengeance. My appreciation for this episode doesn’t really kick in until the scene with Timmy fighting Francis, in which Francis threatens to pound Tootie. Timmy’s kung fu powers now start working again when he vows that he won’t let Francis hurt Tootie, as he’s fighting Francis defensively.
That scene right there can easily be considered as one of the series’ boldest moments. Afterwards, Timmy defeats Francis and gets everything back and returns his kindness to Tootie by telling her that his restraining order has expired. The episode’s strongest point is its characters, but I’ll admit that I can’t rank this episode any higher than I can because there are few memorable lines and jokes. Still though, it’s a charming episode and a darn solid one too. Great.
35b. Which Witch is Which?: Timmy goes back in time in order to figure out who exactly founded Dimmsdale after a dispute with A.J. Timmy seeks to prove that Dale Dimm founded the city, but gets sidetracked by Not-Mr. Crocker, Alden Bitterroot, who is on a crazy witch hunt.
Before I say anything about the episode, I thought I’d give you guys a solid reminder that there’s still a lot more time travel-centered episodes where that came from. To me, this is just a pretty standard yet entertaining episode. There’s not much I can write home to besides the creative plot and the satire of the Salems witch hunt period. This episode also features an unusual plot twist with Alden Bitterroot being a witch the whole time. As for the episode’s jokes, one that I thought was pretty funny was this line: “If he drowns, he be’th human, if he survives, HE IS A WITCH!” Dale Dimm was pretty annoying, but his character doesn’t do so much to bring down my final ranking.
This is the type of episode that just passes you by, but hey, I can assure you that you’ll get something more from this than, say “Hail to the Chief” or “Beddy Bye.” Good.
36a. Pipe Down!: After several times that Timmy has to reconstruct his Lego model of the Eiffel Tower, AND after blowing it in a game of charades that resulted into the Dinklebergs taking Mr. Turner’s prized charades trophies and a series of tirades, Timmy decides that he’s had enough noise and wishes for the world to be completely silent. Unfortunately, a meteor is heading right towards Earth, and Timmy must do a game of charades with his fairies to wish for the sound to come back and wish for the meteor to be gone.
This episode is a pretty well-thought-out homage to silent era cartoons. What I really liked about the entire concept of the FOP world being silent is the instrumentation and it coincides with the episode’s humor and atmosphere very well. I also really liked the concept of playing charades to save the world from impeding doom. Undeniably one of the most humorous moments from the episode was Crocker’s silent spasm, as well as this line from Mr. Turner: “This is not a bulldozer! This is not a fudgesicle! And how are these Ghostbusters II!?”
The episode did have some flaws, I’ll admit it. I’m particularily talking about the end where Mr. Turner apologizes for snapping at Timmy, but still seems to care a lot about his trophies after Mr. Dinkleberg melted them down into a golden toilet seat, and when Timmy thinks that he won’t have to be involved in a game of charades again, Mr. Turner pressures him into playing “red light, green light” with him for the golden toilet seat before slamming his bedroom door shut and causing the finished Eiffel Tower model to collapse. It ends with Timmy yelling so loud that his clothes fly off (a running gag from the episode). To say the least, it’s not so satisfying to see that Timmy still can’t have what he’s always wanted from the start of the episode. It’s still an enjoyable episode regardless, so don’t think I’m making it out like if a meteor’s hurdling towards us, and speaking of which…(*spits out coffee in panic*) Good.
36b. The Big Scoop!: Chester and A.J. need to send in a fresh and intriguing story for the school newspaper, ‘cause if they don’t, they’re off the paper. Chester and A.J. find the opportunity to write a story about Timmy and how he got unexpectedly popular. However, after snooping into his permanent record, Chester and A.J. believe that Timmy somehow replaced his real parents with two other parents with pink and green hair and used his parents’ insurance money to own the internet and get all the cool kid stuff from the internet. The two friends are left to take pictures of Timmy setting up his party in his “mansion” before they could pitch their story to Mr. Birkenbake.
What’s this? Clearly, this isn’t your typical, ordinary episode of the Fairly OddParents where Timmy makes a wish that eventually backfires and all that jazz. I really must say that I like this change of pace by focusing on the perspective of a different character, or otherwise, A.J. and Chester. What’s also interesting is that this episode takes place during “A Wish Too Far.” For the most part though, Chester and A.J.’s storyline is the central focus of the episode, which I really appreciate. Of course, due to being the central focus of the episode, Chester and A.J. also provide some of the best jokes in the episode, with lines like “We will not silenced!” and “Chester McBadbat, ace photographer, is not part flying squirrel.”
The episode ends off with Chester and A.J. refusing to write a story about Timmy after accepting his honesty and apology about pretending to be popular. However, they decide to write a story about how they were trying to get a story out of Timmy, and because they let it slip that they snuck into Timmy’s permanent record, they land in detention. This is a very solid episode that takes on a different turn, and it’s such a shame that the series hasn’t done more episodes like this after a while where Timmy isn’t the central focus of an episode (Another episode that I know of that has the similar format is “Back to Norm,” and it’s all the way into Season 5). I stand by that this episode is one of the greats of this season that isn’t too far behind from my top 5. I will not be silenced! Great.
37a. Crime Wave: After having to take a bath, Timmy gives himself the time to read the latest Crimson Chin comic book…only to notice that it’s last month’s issue, so he wishes that he was at the comic store. Unfortunately, Timmy forgot to wish that he was fully dressed at the comic book store and he now has to return home without anyone seeing him naked. At the time, Chin has to face one of his arch-enemies, H2Olga, while caring for Beverly Boulevard’s baby niece. However, to the Chin’s dismay, the comic book is slipping into the bath water, which is making H2Olga’s powers stronger.
This is an episode that is…indeed interesting to say the least. One half of the episode’s jokes revolve around Timmy’s dilemma of being nude in public. The other half is reliant on toilet humor, and if you couldn’t tell by how the Chin’s subplot ends with H20lga inside of the baby niece’s diaper on top of being covered in defecation after her defeat…yeah, the juvenile nature of this episode really shows. That also happens to the biggest problem that I have with the episode as it can be too juvenile for its own good, whether it be the nudity jokes or the toilet humor. Regardless, there were some tidbits that I did enjoy, like the joke about Timmy being mistaken for Naked Lad, and the bit with Timmy’s parents getting into a water drinking contest, which also involved prune juice and high fiber O’s (sprinkled with chocolate laxatives).
While the little jokes save the episode from being awful in my eyes (aside from the fact that weren’t any particular moments from the episode that got on my bad side), I wouldn’t call this episode enjoyable, with some of the jokes being a little too childish beyond my years. Meh.
37b. Odd Ball: After his V-Cube suddenly gets blown to bits, Timmy has to get himself a job so he could buy a new one after his dad tells him that he can’t just wish it fixed. Timmy lands himself a job as a ball boy for the Dimmsdale Ballhogs after accidentally hitting the past one with a dart. Much to Timmy’s dismay, the Dimmsdale Ballhogs are the most selfish team of basketball players and refuse to share anything, including the ball. So Timmy then wishes that he was extremely tall and talented at basketball…until he gets enough money for a V-Cube. After the wish gets cancelled out, Timmy must convince the Ballhogs to work together as a team before they’re sent to Alaska.
Now this episode is more of a breath of fresh air. Once again, it has a very straightforward, yet clear moral about generosity. Of course, the selling point of the episode is its jokes, with the Ballhogs providing most of those memorable moments. I also really liked recurring blubber nuggets joke and some of the gags with freakishly tall Timmy. The end of the episode is satisfying episode to warrant a good enough ranking with the Ballhogs playing like a team and managing to win the game and Timmy learning his lesson about selflessness by giving his dad his brand-new V-Cube. In short, I really enjoyed this episode, but I don’t know if I enjoy these blubber nuggets more. …Hey! They’re chewy! Great.
38a. Where’s Wanda?: In this homage to the noir detective genre, Timmy and Cosmo must figure out who took Wanda, who suddenly disappeared during Dimmsdale Elementary’s parent-student night. With Francis, A.J., Trixie, and not Timmy’s dad as the main suspects, Timmy must solve the crime before Cosmo and Wanda’s fairy probation hearing.
When it comes to satirizing and making a homage to the noir detective genre, this episode really does its homework, and it provides us with a very solid plot and a good amount of solid jokes, including the Casablanca bit, Timmy’s dad really wanting to be a suspect, and the zany metaphors (i.e. “lost as Cosmo at a smart guy convention”), something you would normally expect from the nature of this episode. On the topic of the rest of the episode, one thing I can say is that I thought the reveal of Cosmo taking Wanda away (to her favorite place imaginable) felt pretty genuine, and I especially liked how it’s due to the fact that Cosmo was afraid that he was going to do something stupid that Wanda would end up serving level 13 probation.
The episode ends on a bittersweet note with Wanda having to serve level 14 probation with Mama Cosma while Timmy and Cosmo do some fishing inside of their black and white world. Overall, this is a very enjoyable episode, but if you think I’m giving it so much credit, just you wait until you see what thoughts I have to share about the next episode. …However, I can’t seem to remember it, so now I have to let my imagination run wild…and then it hit me like…like…when I finally thought of a good enough metaphor to compare my thoughts with. Imaginary Gary… Great.
38b. Imaginary Gary: Needing someone to play Surgeon General with, Timmy wishes for his imaginary friend Gary, from when he was five years old, to be real. It may seem cool at first, but after a single day whereas Gary wins over his family and his friends, all while making Timmy look lame in front of everyone, Timmy ultimately decides that he’s had enough and tries to wish him back into his mind. As it turns out, after Timmy ends up inside his own mind Gary, his imaginary friend appears to hold a grudge against Timmy for being kept inside a box with all of Timmy’s other 5 year old stuff and for being thrown aside after therapy.
I didn’t imagine that this would be one of the most beloved episodes of the series in my eyes. I can understand exactly why now looking back on this episode, because the episode made the concept of wishing for an imaginary friend to be real a lot more interesting than one would normally bargain for it to be. Imaginary Gary was a very memorable and entertaining character, whilst having some unusually interesting depth that involved his bitterness towards Timmy for leaving him behind for five years. On top of that, I thought that a lot of the good jokes came from Gary, such the “not cool” recurring gag, and the one bit with Cosmo joining in on Gary’s slow motion walk. However, the one joke that really got me the most was when Timmy blurted out his fantasy of a lifelong relationship with Trixie.
Story-wise, the episode follows a really creative and well-written plot. Gary provided a very interesting antagonist role, and to sum it all up, this episode is just…cool. Wrapping up my review as simple and short as this? Definitely not cool. Excellent.
39a. Chip Off the Old Chip: Timmy wants the leading role to Mr. Bickles’ musical production of Loose Cannon Cop to impress the leading lady, Trixie. Unfortunately, Timmy’s singing voice is awful, but thanks to television, Timmy gets the opportunity to wish for Chip Skylark’s voice. However, Timmy’s own voice is traded over to Chip, who ends up with a new job as a pizza delivery boy due to his new, awful voice.
Uuugh, considering that this episode is yet another type of plot in which Timmy tries to impress Trixie, you folks would already have the feeling that this episode would not bode well with me. Honestly, I’ve been feeling torn on whether I thought this was a legitimately bad episode from the series, or just an incredibly mediocre one. While doing these reviews, I’ve come to the conclusion that I really did not like this episode. Sure, it’s got a clear-cut moral about finding your own voice, or whatever it’s supposed to mean, but after so many times that Chip Skylark says it in his song, the point just feels so lost on me. As for the episode’s jokes, I don’t remember getting a kick out of one of them. I especially didn’t like the line where one of Timmy’s parents was like “Why couldn’t our son be Chip Skylark?” that just put a bad taste in my mouth.
As for some other scattered thoughts I have towards the episode, I can start by saying that I thought Chip’s subplot was seriously boring. The scene with the pledge of allegiance where Timmy, having Chip’s voice, getting Chip with Timmy’s voice to say “I wish I had Timmy Turner’s voice” before having their own voices re-exchanged while not raising any suspicions left me with a few questions. The end of the episode didn’t really make my thoughts any better as it just ends with Mr. Turner’s singing voice (with a jar of peanut butter on his head) proving to be so bad that Timmy’s hair and the disguised Cosmo and Wanda’s fur fall out.
This is such a worthless episode with little to no charm to make me change my mind about it. If any of you did like this episode, good for you, but is it really worth watching? Not on my watch. Scum.
39b. Snow Bound: Mr. Turner takes Timmy and Vicky to a ski resort, due to reports of an abominable snowman sighting. Timmy’s dad seeks to protect his wife and her “sick aunt,” while Timmy and Vicky are left alone to do some snowboarding (with Timmy being the snowboard) until they end up getting trapped inside a cave.
After suffering through another bad episode from S3, we move onto an episode that is a whole lot better. In fact, this ranks up as one of the best episodes of the season. I really appreciated Mr. Turner’s subplot, in which he tries to hunt down the abominable snowman to keep his wife and her sick, fake aunt safe. Mr. Turner also provides most of the episode’s funniest moments, namely the scene where he believes that the abominable snowman ate the entire 24th floor and the scene near the end where he tries to fend off the abdominal snowman.
But then you have the main plot between Timmy and Vicky where they end up trapped inside a cold cavern. That’s what really solidified my thoughts on the episode of being one of the best of the season. During their scenes, Timmy gets to see a different side of Vicky, where she feels so cold to the point where her fury fizzles out. Thereafter, we also get a scene where Timmy and Vicky have to hug each other for warmth, and there are only a few more heartwarming moments between Timmy and Vicky to go from there. I really found myself appreciated their character plot since it establishes that Timmy and Vicky can turn out to be good enough friends when they find themselves in a dangerous situation. Aside from the repeatedly mentioned moment in which Timmy and Vicky hugged, I also really liked the scene where Timmy drills back into the cold cave to rescue Vicky, and the scene with Timmy and Vicky snowboarding together.
The end of the episode also turned out to be pretty great. Granted, it didn’t result into any consequences, but still, I thought it was pleasant how Mr. Turner believes that his wife being surrounded with the other moms and boxes of pizzas meant that their “sick aunts” are cured and they are celebrating. The episode does end with Vicky being mad at Timmy for rescuing her from a hunk, causing another avalanche, and being mistaken as the abominable snowman by Mr. Turner. That particular moment is pretty funny when you reconsider a past joke about Mr. Turner believing that he can speak woman. Overall, this is an excellent episode, and it was a very good segment to cap off Season 3 with. Excellent.
And at last, that is every single Season 3 episode that I’ve had to cover. This episode had quite a lot of gems, but it also had a couple of duds, so I am torn on whether this season is better than the last, or if it ends up outmatched by it. My only way of knowing is if I do my finalized rankings for each season. Staying on-topic of Season 3, I can definitely say that it was a great like the past two seasons. Great.
Onward to my top 5, these aren’t episodes that are just good, as all these entries have garnered the “Excellent” rating:
5. Imaginary Gary
4. The Grass is Greener
3. Snow Bound
1. The Secret Origin of Denzel Crocker!
And for the first time, I’m going to unveil a bottom 5. While there were two that I seriously loathed, the rest rank up as “Meh” episodes from my perspective:
5. Most Wanted Wish
4. Crime Wave
3. Beddy Bye
2. Love Struck!
1. Chip Off the Old Chip
I can’t really give you guys a specific guarantee on when I’ll publish my Season 4 review. If net neutrality pulls through, I might get it out by early June or late May, and if it doesn’t, then I fear that I’ll never get it out. Only time will tell, though.
The rankings so far:
"Excellent:" 12 (14 counting Season 0)
"Great:" 28 (33 counting Season 0)
"Good:" 18 (19 counting Season 0)
"Okay:" 3 (5 counting Season 0)
Made you all click, didn't I?
It's the least I can do to grab some attention from some folk before I can share my thoughts on the Oscars and its animation categories. As another way to put it, the title of my entry doesn't actually reflect my thoughts on the Academy's treatment with the two animation categories. This is an argument against the perception of the Academy voters towards the specific categories.
Alright, so the 90th Academy Awards came on a few days ago and its winners were revealed. I didn't watch the Oscars that other night since I only care about the animation field, so let's talk about the winners for the Best Animated Feature and Best Animated Short Film, shall we? Coco won Best Animated Feature and Dear Basketball won Best Animated Short Film, to put it all bluntly....and yet some people are upset about that, but why? Clearly, this is the 6th consecutive win from Disney, counting Pixar and apparently so, some others were holding on for a dark horse victory from The Breadwinner and Loving Vincent...both of which I haven't seen yet, but anyways, I should point this out: the least we can really expect from the Oscars and its animation field is a dark horse victory of some sort. In the case for Dear Basketball, its win was controversial because....Bryant's sex scandals and I'm just going to leave it there.
Here's the deal though: hypothetically speaking, what if any of the other nominees win their respective award? If Lou won Best Animated Short Film along with Coco's win for Best Picture, wouldn't that mean that the Oscar voters are being so ignorant that they're going with the easiest/most well-known choices possible? Or how about if The Boss Baby or Ferdinand won over Coco? Wouldn't that be kinda controversial despite if Disney's streak got broken? Your perception of the Oscar voters is up to you, but is it fair enough to call them ignorant because they either went with the most predictable choice or didn't go with the choice that best defined excellence in animation?
Before you all say anything else, I am aware that the main issue with the Oscars voters and the animation field is that most members of the Academy don't watch every animated film that's nominated alongside the fact that some of the voters refute to vote for the Best Animated Feature category, even probably as well as the Animated Short Film category, but when the Academy does give a vote to an animated film, it's usually towards a Disney or Pixar film. And that's not all, there have also been stories about some Academy voters relying on their kids to watch the animated films, tell them their favorite, and just go with what they thought was the best. This controversy arose the more that Disney kept up with the streak since Brave won the award in 2012, and accusations of the Academy being ignorant about animation always goes back to Cartoon Brew's articles surrounding it.
Cartoon Brew is a website that headlines news and think pieces about anything going around in the animation industry, with animation historian Amid Amidi being its current head honcho. I've heard a lot of negative comments about Amidi, but I have a love-hate relationship with the guy. When he makes a point, sometimes he can make a pretty solid one, but other times I feel like he can get his viewpoints all over his head. I really like how passionate he is about animation but I hate his...say, Accumulate the Negative attitude. So, for example, let's take a look at Amidi's past article where he bemoans the animation Oscar jury in 2017, 'cause third time's the charm, am I right?
Academy members’ flippant attitude and outright disdain for animation has led to a crisis of confidence in the organization’s abilities to judge animation.
That would be the tl;dr version of the article, and the least I can say from that point is...that I'll give Amidi some credit for trying to sell the drama by using remarkably big words.
...The more likely culprit is good old-fashioned ignorance. Giving the award to the company with the biggest footprint in the industry is an unsurprising choice for voters who have no passion for animated filmmaking and no knowledge of the craft.
Implying that you do know these Academy members personally to make this assumption, right? The comments on each voters' ballot shouldn't speak for everything.
...they’ve also shown themselves uniquely unqualified to judge animated filmmaking, often expressing contempt for the art form and viewing it as a lesser craft than what they produce in live action.
You know, when some of the Oscar voters have expressed refuting to vote for the animation field, it could either mean that they aren't an open book when it comes to the art form, or they wholeheartedly have zero interest in animated films. Like the other couple articles, this one makes it sound like that the Academy voters have insulted the art form - that in which is kinda of a harsh generalization. If voting for any of the non-animation Oscar categories isn't considered to be mandatory, then I don't see how the animation categories should be treated as voting for it is mandatory.
This is all I can quote from the article, because the rest of the way, Amidi does make a fair point about the Academy Awards' animation field and the perception of it as an indicator of excellence in animation. Although, one question I have is why should I be mad about Zootopia winning Best Animated Feature that year? I personally thought it was the best piece of animation of 2016. Just to give one last detail about Amidi, I have heard stories about how Amidi has a problematic relationship with Disney. He hasn't expressed contempt about Coco winning this year, but even if some others are, I don't see much of a reason to get mad over the film's win either when I felt that it's such a strong contender for 2017's greatest work of animation. Heck, I even saw most of the other nominated 2016 animation films and I still would have to choose Zootopia, with Kubo and the Two Strings being stuck at second place and My Life as a Courgette behind third being Kubo.
So, most of you all are thinking right now on what point I'm trying to make across while I'm still writing out this long, detailed rambling about Cartoon Brew and the Oscars? I think it would be pleasant enough to see other members of the Academy to be more of an open book on animation, but calling out some of the anonymous members as disrespectful to animation for their treatment with the animation categories is not a very respectable thing to commit to, IMO. Other than that, even if the Oscars' animation field is losing its meaning, its voters could be partly to blame, but I don't anyone is of a bigger fault than the animation age ghetto.
The animation age ghetto (caps or no caps; toe-may-toe, ta-mah-toe.) is the belief that animation can be only be viewed and enjoyed by children, and it's become quite a crutch for most people who have no interest in the art form. As long as this sticks around, I expect not so much to change from some of the anonymous Oscar voters and their participation with the animation categories for years AND years to come.
So, what do I think about the Oscars and their "broken" Animated Feature/Short Film awards? I already made myself clear with the quotation marks, but anyways, I'd say it's not broken at all. In fact, when you find yourself in a conversation about any awards show, expect to always find the kind of people who aren't satisfied with every recipient that won a particular award. In fact, I believe that award ceremonies don't always seem to get everything right. Granted, I was upset when the Oscars put "In a Heartbeat" on the back burner, but I shook that feeling off after a short while. Hear me out on this when I say that I don't think the winner or nominations for an award matter so much for excellence in animation - at least to me. I think it at least matters that animation is always going to be recognized as an art form and that the AMPAS recognizes animation as an art form. Any particular animated feature, short, or TV series that I've enjoyed will always stand out as a winner in my eyes - and that's only a part of what it means for me to be a passionate fan of animation.
So yeah, that was a pretty lengthy rambling. This is a think piece, whereas I'm expressing as much of my inner thoughts on something as possible, so I am open to criticism or arguments regarding any of my thoughts. Later this month I'll write up my next blog entry. Certainly it will be my next FOP review, so my next entry will be as long as this.
NOTE: I have now updated my old year-end Hot 100 review topic with 2016 and 1997 in the first post, as well as making some last-minute adjustments to some of my full rankings. For those who don’t want to check back, here’s what I’ve changed:
I am feeling bored. And what do you do when you feel so bored that you want to try something different? Well, this isn’t quite different, but it’s been long since I’ve covered Billboard year-end lists. So, to answer to my question, what I should do when I say I’m feeling bored to the point where I want to review a year-end list? I review not one, two, but four of them. So how about we go through the year-end lists of 2010 all the way to 2013? If I covered 2014-2017, why not take a shot at the other four year-end lists from this decade? And so, the Year-End Countdown Community arises from the ashes as I take the time to temporarily come out of retirement from reviewing year-end lists, starting from the top with 2010…
Steel’s Bottom/Top 10 Hit Songs of 2010
And since I’m covering all four years in two separate topics, I’m going to try to be as brief yet informative as I possibly can with each song that appears on my lists. No YouTube links this time around as well. I have a full rankings list for each one, but if you folks really want them, I can publish them in a separate post. Lastly, the same rules from my previous year-end list reviews apply here.
Anyways, what can I say that best describes the year 2010 in pop music? 2010 can be described as 2010’s awkward freshman year (and of course, I’m saying this because most of these hits were around during MY freshman year). 2010 tries quite a lot to hang around as the cool kid, but only ended up giving us some painful reactions. In other words, there’s a large presence of bad for 2010 in pop than a presence of good. However, the good stuff this year is really good, so my choices aren’t based on limited options. The bottom 10 wasn’t hard to craft either, but some of you guys might be thinking that I’ve made some painful cuts due to the number of bad eggs that this year had. Starting off with the hot garbage, we got…
BedRock – Young Money featuring Lloyd (#11)
Whatcha Say – Jason Derulo (Backwash #12)
Tie Me Down – New Boyz featuring Ray J
Break Your Heart – Taio Cruz
Eenie Meenie – Sean Kingston featuring Justin Bieber
Teach Me How to Dougie – Cali Swag District
If I Die Young – The Band Perry
Bottoms Up – Trey Songz featuring Nicki Minaj
In My Head – Jason Derulo
Naturally – Selena Gomez and The Scene
DJ Got Us Fallin’ In Love – Usher featuring Pitbull (#11)
Use Somebody – Kings of Leon (Backwash #12)
Empire State of Mind – Jay-Z featuring Alicia Keys (Backwash #13)
Not Afraid – Eminem
Animal – Neon Trees
Alejandro – Lady Gaga
Young Forever – Jay-Z featuring Mr. Hudson
Find Your Love – Drake
According to You – Orianthi
Secrets – OneRepublic
Steel's Bottom/Top 10 Hit Songs of 2011:
And now we’ve moved onto the sophomore year in 2010 pop music, and I have to say, it’s a big improvement from the previous year. The good stuff this year was very stellar, but the bad stuff this year was nearly as horrendous as the bad pop songs from 2010. There were a few painful cuts I’ve made. I couldn’t even make room for “If I Die Young” for this year. Alright, let’s just get to it…
Jar of Hearts – Christina Perri (#11)
Like a G6 – Far East Movement featuring the Cataracs and Dev (Backwash #12)
Where Dem Girls At – David Guetta featuring Flo Rida and Nicki Minaj
Grenade – Bruno Mars
If I Die Young – The Band Perry
Down on Me – Jeremih featuring 50 Cent
Give Me Everything – Pitbull and Ne-Yo featuring Afrojack
Backseat – New Boyz featuring The Cataracs and Dev
What the Hell – Avril Lavigne
Born This Way – Lady Gaga
On the Floor – Jennifer Lopez featuring Pitbull (#11)
Yeah 3x – Chris Brown
Teenage Dream – Katy Perry (Backwash honorable mention)
Firework – Katy Perry
Moment 4 Life – Nicki Minaj featuring Drake
More – Usher
Colder Weather – Zac Brown Band
I’m on One – DJ Khaled featuring Drake, Rick Ross, and Lil Wayne
Sure Thing – Miguel
You Make Me Feel… – Cobra Starship featuring Sabi
Coming soon will be my reviews for the best and worst hits of 2012 and 2013. Keep your eyes open for that.
Welcome back to another segment of every Fairly OddParents episode reviewed. I am going to cover Season 2, but you all can already tell from the title. …And I don’t have anything else to say at this point, so let’s get the ball rolling with…
8a. Boys in the Band: Timmy wakes up to his supposed birthday, but wakes up to an announcement of the Chip Skylark concert that is taking place in that very day. As the day goes on, Timmy feels upset since everyone apparently forget about his birthday because Chip Skylark is taking all the limelight away from him. This prompts for Timmy to wish for the most unfortunate, non-lethal thing to happen to Chip Skylark…in which he then ends up coming to Timmy’s house. Vicky is ecstatic to meet Skylark in person and eventually attempts to get him to marry her by force. Meanwhile, Chip’s rabid fans are demanding the return of him.
This was an odd episode… (“Yes, because Cosmo’s voice got higher – and more annoying later on!”) Putting aside that small detail about Cosmo, what can I say on how I felt about the episode? It’s got some decently good jokes, particularly the scenes with Cosmo trying to distract the crowd with his old band as an opening act. I also liked the moments where Timmy eventually realizes that Chip Skylark is a great guy and is not trying to ruin his birthday. Everything else I thought kinda fell flat. The Vicky subplot was starting to feel boring to me, and while I can take the whole twist with Timmy’s parents convincing their son that they’d never forget his birthday and it turns out to be the day after, I’m just not a big fan of the “Everyone forgot about my birthday!” episode archetype, since it usually always results into an “Oh wait, they didn’t forget after all.” type of episode. First episode of the season, and for the most part it was…alright! *Tomato gets thrown at me* Okay.
8b. Hex Games: One day at the skate park, Vicky spoils the fun of every kid in the park. And as queen of the skate park, she threatens to banish every kid there under her age if Timmy fails to beat her in three of the ramps – including the death-defying big ramp. Unfortunately, Da Rules disallows the use of magic during a competition, so while Timmy has to beat Vicky without magic, he otherwise goes through some skateboarding practice with the help of his fairies, alongside Chester and A.J. who designed a custom trick for him before Vicky momentarily steals it.
If “Boys in the Band” didn’t partly help keep the show’s feet on the ground, then this did. This episode had a pretty cool plot and a satisfying end. It had some pretty amusing gags too. Now, what I liked the most was the very climax with Timmy against Vicky in the skate park. The scene with Timmy doing the “Timmy Tuck” trick (while drawing parallels to his skateboarding practice) and succeeding is one of the most delighting moments from the show in general. All’s said and done, so I’ll leave it here: this is another great episode- I mean… (*checks skating lingo book*) This rad episode had me all stoked up, man! Great.
9a. Boy Toy: While Timmy, Chester, and A.J. are demolishing their old toys with a slingshot, Timmy finds his old Crimson Chin action toy and begins to reconnect with it. Shortly after, Tootie comes to Timmy’s backyard before he and his friends soak her with water balloons to run her off. Before Chester and A.J. could put the Chin toy with more water balloons, Timmy wishes he could play with it for one last time. With the wish granted, Timmy becomes toy sized and the Chin action figure comes to life. Once as Tootie returns to the treehouse, however, Cosmo and Wanda turn themselves into dolls and Tootie takes them to her room to play with.
So, we go from an alright episode, to a remarkable one, to a very well-written one. The main storyline doesn’t really begin to be as interesting until the plot between Timmy and his Crimson Chin toy develop more until we get a well-thought out moral about being nicer to someone or something despite certain aspects. Also, when it comes to the group of well-loved episodes centering on Tootie, including “Kung Timmy” and “Birthday Wish!,” I think “Boy Toy” is worth some more recognition, as it contains some of the best character development from Timmy, apologizing to Tootie for acting like a stupid 10 year-old boy, as well as telling her sooner or later that he’ll start getting into girls. I also liked the moment where Timmy gives the Chin toy to Tootie and prevents it from being destroyed by Vicky by wishing for it to be indestructible and for it to come packed with anti-Vicky action phrases. It’s a very good way to establish the moment of Timmy paying something forward after he decides that he should treat his Chin toy better. This episode is also supplied with a fair share of funny moments in the form of Chin’s action phrases, and a lot of lines from Cosmo.
To put it bluntly, this episode is a definite gem from the series. …And because there’s no particular running joke for me to send this off with, I’m just going to leave it here. Also, just for the record, not every episode review will have a particular running joke in place of it. In other words, there are some exceptions I have to make. If I end a review like normal, then you’ll all know that there’s an absence of reoccurring lines or jokes in an episode, just a reminder. Excellent.
9b. Inspection Detection: Timmy is making a grand number of wishes for Cosmo and Wanda’s fairy inspection. However, when a news report warns about a Wall 2 Wall Mart shoplifter, Timmy’s parents accuse him as the shoplifter. Timmy doesn’t want his parents to think of him as a thief, so he wishes all the stuff away. With the inspection starting right now, Timmy is on the brink of losing his fairies but he also has to prove his parents that he’s not a shoplifter, as well as prove Francis as the shoplifter after finding this out himself.
My main focus towards the episode is usually on the humor than the main plot, which sometimes gets tedious the more that Timmy is falsely branded as the shoplifter. It does get better near the end with Timmy proving that he’s innocent, though. Now, on the humor, I can talk about some of the best jokes, preferably with Cosmo and Wanda distracting Jorgen with a couple of picture slideshows and the one gag with Mr. Turner complaining about not having nice things. And did I mention that this is a very nice episode? Now why don’t I have a nice episode? Great.
10a. Action Packed: After a dull boring day in Dimmsdale takes a turn when Timmy watches an action movie, he wishes that his life would be like one. However, things take a turn for the worse with Jorgen Von Strangle as the action movie villain.
This episode uses exaggeration as a factor towards the humor of this episode, and it works pretty significantly well with the random explosions, the mundane, action-filled scene with Timmy having breakfast to exemplify. Granted that this episode takes notes from action movies in general, the episode is also full of thrills. What I really liked though was the sharp turn into an emotional and horrifying scene with Jorgen taking away the magic from Cosmo and Wanda and other fairies. And then we get the tip of the iceberg where Jorgen uses the stored magic to make his own self ridiculously ripped and mad with fairy magic. Afterwards, Timmy manages to defeat Jorgen and Timmy returns to his normal boring life before he then catches his parents getting hooked on the Loose Cannon Cop movie. Nothing else to say besides that this is another great episode, on to the next one. *Explodes* Great.
10b. Smarty Pants: Tired of getting F’s and A.J. rubbing his intelligence in his face, Timmy wishes that he knew everything. Eventually, Timmy gets himself a chair at the Academic Brainathon alongside A.J., but due to Da Rules disallowing magic to be used in a competition, the magic is cancelled out and now Timmy has to use his fast button-buzzing reflexes to help A.J. win the Brainathon.
What I can say right away is that my thoughts on this episode aren’t as strong. I give all my credit to the well-written plot, along with some character establishment for A.J., but there aren’t many jokes I can compliment on besides the bit where Timmy outsmarts his parents about proving himself as a smarty pants, and the not-study game. Speaking of which…I’m doing the not-review game right now. It’s a decent episode, bye! *video game sounds* Good.
11a. Super Bike: Okay, so I can’t weasel myself out of these reviews. But hey, this is another remarkable episode. Anyways, Timmy and his dad are competing for the father/son bike race, but Timmy doesn’t like the bike that his dad made for him, so he wishes for a much cooler and indestructible bike. This upsets Timmy’s dad as Timmy is not using the bike he made him, so Timmy then feels bad and then realizes that he doesn’t want to ride Super Bike any longer, but the talking bike is so overly attached to Timmy that he’ll never let him leave his side.
When it comes to memorable episode storyline, this episode is one of those examples. Super Bike is a very interesting character and his role as an obsessive-type of villain is very well thought out. The episode also has a pretty solid moral about how spending time with your loved ones and the things they made for you is better than being around with a cool-looking, obsessive, talking bike….yeah, if you put it that way, it’s a weird moral, but it still works. I don’t know if anyone else sees this as an incredibly solid episode like I do, but if you don’t…haha- Super Toilet. Excellent.
11b. A Mile In My Shoes: Timmy has another bad day of his life, same for Cosmo and Wanda, who both came back from a tune-up in Fairy World, as both didn’t enjoy their day either. Timmy thinks it’s easier to be a fairy than it is to be a normal 10-year old kid, so he wishes he would be a fairy and that his fairies would be him. However, Timmy doesn’t know how to use fairy magic and his fairies have to deal with Vicky babysitting and giving them some hard labor.
It’s a very interesting concept for an episode and an interesting character expansion for Timmy, Cosmo, and Wanda to boot, but it’s got some moments that tend to drag, likewise Timmy’s inability to use fairy magic, morphing into the wrong thing and such. As for some of the jokes in the episode, I’ll give it credit for the episode being the debut of Mr. Turner’s utterly ridiculous rivalry with Mr. Dinkleberg, and the “steamed broccoli” bit. Overall, it’s your typical “the grass isn’t always greener on the other side” kind of episode, but with how the show was continuing to build its dynamics at the time, it still works well. I don’t know if this is the kind of gag that I should send this episode off with, but… *magical floating cow appears* “Finally! Dairy World!” Good.
12a. Timvisible: On the last day of school, it’s the day that Timmy gets his award for perfect attendance, but it’s also the day that Francis celebrates by pounding on all the guys. Timmy then tries to avoid getting beaten by Francis when it soon becomes his turn, but after realizing that Francis can’t beat him if he can’t see him, Timmy wishes that we was invisible. This works, but after Timmy uses his invisibility to his advantage by playing jokes all across the school, everyone thinks the school is being haunted by a ghost. This allows for Mr. Crocker to step in and try hunting down the invisible boy that is Danny Phantom- I mean, Timmy with his exclusive ghost hunting gear in order to prove the existence of fairies, and perhaps also ghosts.
First thing’s first, the episode gives us the welcome return of Mr. Crocker. On top of that, this is the first episode that gives Francis a larger role. But it’s mostly pleasant to see Mr. Crocker in this kind of fashion where he’s not only obsessed with fairies but also towards magical beings and the supernatural in general. On the plus side, his antagonistic role in the episode is very well-written. The story in this episode is also pretty solid and creative. Some other highlights include the moment where we know how important the perfect attendance award is to Timmy, considering the fact that Timmy is at least good at something, even if it’s merely showing up to school everyday. Then there’s also the moment that comes afterwards with Timmy becoming visible, earning his award, and tells Francis that he’s willing to face up against him…only for Francis to pound himself after hitting Timmy’s medal.
It’s not one of the absolute strongest episodes of the show, I’ll admit, but it’s still entertaining enough that it might be one of Season 2’s best segments. Strange thing is, I’m not typing all this up, which could mean…it’s the haunted blog entry! …Probably not. Great.
12b. That Old Black Magic: The Turners are on a family trip to Adrenalland, and Timmy can’t really wait. Unfortunately, it’s Friday the 13th. Timmy is not superstitious, but Cosmo and Wanda warn him that it’s the day that the fairies’ evil counterparts, the anti-fairies, run amok by causing bad luck. After a few rides fall apart due to Timmy’s bad luck, Timmy wants to try and have a talk with the anti-fairies himself, which only causes for them to escape from their Fairy World prison and engulf the Earth with bad luck.
I’ll have to admit, the episode’s means towards representing bad luck and the show’s character expansion towards anti-fairies is very subtle here. One of the downsides I have with the episode is that given its narrative on bad luck, there are some moments that can feel predictable, but I feel that the episode makes up for it with some of its jokes, including the gag with Mr. Turner lifting and arguing with his two feet, and some of the bits with Mr. President that might as well be a sly jab at George W. Bush. One other moment worth noting is when Timmy wishes that the anti-fairies were freed, and by then you can tell the outcome, and you make out the wish as a pretty foolish one, but even the episode makes up for that by making Anti-Cosmo acknowledge Timmy as a big, stupid hero. In other words, it’s an example of an understandably stupid wish/mistake from Timmy. When it comes to genuinely stupid mistakes or wishes made by Timmy…well, that’s for another time, as well as for a few different seasons, just to remind you readers.
Anyways, “That Old Black Magic” is an example of a well-written episode that overcomes some of its unlucky moments. *Black cat appears in front of me* Aaaand now my document crashed, that’s just great. Speaking of which… Great.
13a. Foul Balled: Timmy has a hard time dealing with not only being on the worst team, but being on the team with the worst player: Chester. Apparently so, Chester’s poor baseball playing runs in the family, alongside his dad Bucky McBadbat, who is considered the worst baseball player ever. Chester wants to redeem his family name and Timmy decides to help by wishing that his friend was the best baseball player ever. Eventually, Chester’s fame starts to go over his head which begins to annoy Timmy and soon enough, it begins to wreck the friendship before the wish ends up being cancelled out and stripping Chester of his baseball skills.
We go from a character establishment episode for A.J. to one with Chester, and between the two, “Foul Balled” is definitely the better episode in my opinion. In fact, the strongest point of the episode was the character storyline between Timmy and Chester. It starts off with a pleasant wish for Chester to be great at baseball, it proceeds into a dramatic moment between the two before then proceeding into a moment where Timmy has to help Chester win the game, and like so, we get a satisfying end with the Losers team winning and making Chester’s dad proud. Aside from all those plot elements, another highlight includes the inspiration speech from Timmy that he and Chester can still at least stink at baseball with pride…which also pretty much doubles as a funny moment. Overall, it’s an endearing episode and it’s most certainly not for pack-mules. Great.
13b. The Boy Who Would be Queen: Timmy gets invited to Trixie’s birthday party, but Timmy can’t think of a perfect gift for her. He could wish to be a girl, but Timmy doesn’t think otherwise…Wanda does however and grants Timmy’s inadvertent wish to be a girl. This wish turns out to be useful for Timmy as he can now think like a girl and find Trixie a perfect gift that way. Sooner than later, Timmy, as Timantha, runs into Trixie and ends up forming a friendship with her.
This episode is a fairly big topic, and that’s because the episode is usually considered one of the absolute best from the series. How so? “Oh, that’s because Mr. Enter talks about it so much!” Yes, that...but anyways, as we all know, the episode starts off with Timmy watching a soap opera, which he actually likes. This becomes foreshadowing later on once as the episode proceeds right into the particular scene with Trixie trying to buy a boys’ comic and when Timantha discovers this, Trixie tells her that she wants to keep it a secret that she enjoys stereotypically boyish things. Then, while at a salon, Trixie goes in-depth that she’d like a friend who likes her for who she was than for what everyone wants her to be, and that Timantha gave her that exact gift for her birthday, before Timmy admits to Trixie himself that he’s not afraid to admit liking stereotypically girlish and boyish things and that he likes Trixie for who she is – which of course, is the exact gift Timmy gave to Trixie for her birthday. Of course, it ends with Timmy getting catapulted from her mansion, but it also ended with Trixie remembering Timmy’s name.
So, what else can I really say beyond the episode’s summary? It’s a solid character establishment episode for Trixie, which shows that she’s not just a part of the snobby rich kid archetype. The episode also has one of the most though-provoking messages from the show in general, in which it deconstruct typical gender roles. Even some of the jokes are hilarious, with some of the funniest moments coming from Chester and A.J., in addition to one joke where Trixie rips up a picture of Veronica. This episode is so good, that no other Season 2 episode had managed to top this. Before I move on, I have one question to ask: dead frog? No one? Fine, let’s move on… Excellent.
14a. Totally Spaced Out: Timmy’s parents are going away for a business trip, which means Vicky has to babysit. Not wanting to deal with this, Timmy wishes that someone or something can take her miles and miles away from Dimmsdale. This gets Mark the alien’s attention as he then takes Vicky to his home planet. However, Timmy’s parents have a Plan B and so they put Timmy at Peppy Happy Learnatorium daycare, which turns out to be so overbearing for Timmy that he wishes himself to Yugopotamia in order to get Vicky back from Mark.
This episode is probably what I would call “Boys in the Band” with more of a pulse and “Spaced Out” but with less of a pulse. It’s nice enough to have the return of Mark Chang, but the one problem that I have with the episode is that there’s barely new ground to cover outside of giving Mark some more background and the introduction to the Peppy Happy Learnatorium that we’re not going to see again much later. The ending isn’t all that great while Timmy trying to make up for ruining Mark’s birthday by sparing his life…and eventually torturing him with Gary and Betty from the Learnatorium, like he did when he choose it as his arena. Some jokes make up for it, or just otherwise the scenes with Timmy at the Learnatorium. For an apparent sequel to “Spaced Out,” this episode was close to the standards of a sophomore slump, but it at least has more flavor than a batch of fat-free soy cubes. (And the fact that Mark can’t seem to stand it for being too healthy wouldn’t make sense anymore when it’s eventually revealed that healthy food is Yugopotamian delights.) Okay.
14b. The Switch Glitch: Today’s Saturday, which means Vicky wouldn’t be around to babysit. But, speak of the devil: Vicky is babysitting Timmy today due to his parents going to a parents-only cook out. Timmy reminds his parents of their promise before they literally use his legal document as fish wrap. After having to do Vicky’s chores and being humiliated by Vicky once more, Timmy wishes that he was the babysitter as payback. With Timmy in-charge of 5 year-old Vicky, life becomes sweet for Timmy until he really starts acting like Vicky and his fairies would then end up being reassigned to her.
To me, this is a more interesting role reversal episode. And really, the main highlight of the episode is the story. Timmy uses his wish to have payback against Vicky, which only ends up making him a mean babysitter just like Vicky when he uses Cosmo and Wanda’s magic to make 5 year-old Vicky cry – a scene that’s actually genuinely heart-wrenching. As the episode goes on, because 5 year-old Vicky is more miserable than Timmy, Cosmo and Wanda are assigned to her, which gives her the chance to give Timmy some of her own payback. The tape recorders that Vicky used to blackmail Timmy is the most unusual way to foreshadow Timmy’s plan to get his fairies back by making her say “I’m happy and I don’t need my godparents anymore.” It can feel like a bit of a cop-out, but the episode then makes up for it in the end by making Timmy do something nice for 5 year-old Vicky before wishing that she was 16 again, ensuring that he’s learned a lesson from all this.
It’s a great episode but almost lightly so if I might add. If there’s one nitpick I’ve had, it’s the out of place closer with Cosmo doing the conga. And just so I’m absolutely clear…*clicks tape recorder* Hi, I’m Steel Sponge and I- *click* liked this episode. Great.
15a. Mighty Mom and Dyno Dad: Timmy’s parents are so overworked to the point where they don’t have enough time to spend with Timmy. Timmy is upset about this so he wishes that they were superheroes so then they would spare enough time to spend with their son, but due to having superhero responsibilities, they end up as busy as they were before. So then Timmy wishes that he was an invincible supervillain in order for his parents to give up their powers.
This is a very endearing episode. I liked the idea of making Timmy’s parents superheroes. What sells it though is the bit with Mr. and Mrs. Turner’s first superhero responsibility being protecting their identities to protect their son, Timmy. There isn’t a particular joke that I can go back to or always make a reference to, but the episode still has its fair of share of thrills. In the end, this episode is just great. On to the next one! *transition screen* Great.
15b. Knighty Knight: After being disappointed by the cheap Camelot Fair in Dimmsdale, Timmy wishes to be in the real deal. However, Timmy’s parents, inside of a cow suit, have also ended up in the Middle Ages, and so Timmy now has to prevent his parents from being eaten and help King Arthur slay the dragon.
It’s a fun enough episode, it’s certainly one of FOP’s tamer episodes, but there are a fair amount of jokes that I liked. I enjoyed the bit with the wizard salesman, I enjoyed almost every moment with Sir Finkleberg hurting his arm, alongside the fact that there’s a game show dedicated to pulling a sword from the stone, and any scene that portrays the obliviousness of Timmy’s parents. The episode’s plot isn’t something to write home about, but it’s still an entertaining segment. I claim that this episode is- *hurts arm* AGHAHAGH! Great.
16a. Fairy Fairy Quite Contrary: A rich kid named Remy Buxaplenty has been wandering around Dimmsdale and trudging Timmy down in places including the comic book world. This eventually leads to Timmy figuring out that Remy is also a godkid like him and that his godparent is Wanda’s ex-boyfriend Juandissimo Magnifico. Remy shortly after figures out about Timmy’s parents and grows envious that he has two compared to his one godparent. After meeting face to face, Remy challenges Timmy to a magical duel, which will determine who will keep or lose their fairies.
This episode…I’m not even finished explaining it, and I’m probably going to have to explain every important detail that I didn’t acknowledge. So, what’s the deal with Remy? His snobby rich kid character archetype is already deconstructed when he’s revealed halfway into the episode that he has a godparent, as well as giving us the indication that he is miserable in some way despite being rich and having otherwise rich parents. Now, what’s the deal with Juandissimo? He’s a direct send-up of the typical attractive, Mexican dreamboat character archetype that likes to rip his shirt off more often than not, and it’s not long until it’s revealed that he’s Wanda’s ex-boyfriend. In other words, Remy and Juandissimo both play very interesting roles in this episode.
The episode establishes Remy’s character very significantly. The episode starts off with Timmy having run-ins with Remy and eventually growing jealous of the fact that he can do stuff better than he can since he’s loaded. On the other hand, Remy is jealous of Timmy because of his fairies before Remy then reveals that he’s miserable because his parents are so busy and attached to their money to the point where they not only never have time to spend with him, but they’re never usually around, before he then reveals that he’s jealous of Timmy since he has godparents and real parents that love him and he doesn’t. And that’s the point where Remy goes from your typical snobby rich kid type of character to one of the most interesting, and relatable recurring characters on the show.
So, what do I have to say about Juandissimo if he doesn’t really top Remy’s character establishment? Some of the episode’s funniest moments come from him, as well as from Cosmo. And speaking of Cosmo…he also has some of the best moments in the episode. Just about every scene where Cosmo tries to get Juandissimo to back off from Wanda since she’s already married is just absolutely satisfying and proves that Cosmo can have his moments where he doesn’t act like a moron most of the time. Of course, you do have the one scene with Cosmo trying to make a fist, but regardless, that’s one of the most humorous moments in the episode. However, the one joke that really sells it for me is during the magical duel where Cosmo mocks Juandissimo to distract him.
Then you’ve got the very end of the episode where Timmy feels bad about Remy losing Juandissimo, so he wishes for Remy’s parent to be able to spend time with him to make up for Remy’s loss in the duel. This results in Remy and his parents being marooned on an island, and while Remy’s parents are still attached to their money, they pay a little more attention to Remy, which is a bit of a start. I also like the last moment where Remy picks up Juandissimo as a turtle, if you take note of the particular scenes with Juandissimo turning Cosmo into a turtle. In short, the episode is so full of depth and memorable moments that it might as well be one of my absolute favorite episodes from the show, and let’s not forget to mention how sexy it is. *Rips shirt and magically appears back on* Okay, maybe not in that way, but you get my point. Excellent.
16b. Nectar of the Odds: Timmy wants tickets for him and his friends to see Crash Nebula (on ice?) Timmy goes with the best possible option in earning money by selling lemonade. Timmy tries to make the best-tasting lemonade after his first pitcher tasted foul. Cosmo then dips his sweaty socks in the lemonade, which not only makes the lemonade taste good, but it also allows customers to grant wishes…that in which eventually takes a turn for the worst.
This is the type of episode that doesn’t really become as interesting until after halfway. The premise of Cosmo’s sweaty socks making better tasting lemonade would seem off-putting, but the point where the episode starts getting as interesting is when the wishing starts to become chaotic, which then leads to Timmy using the lemonade to reverse all the wishes, as well as having to make the sacrifice of wishing that none of it ever happened and no one remembered it, leaving Timmy with no money to see Crash Nebula. (on ice?) The biggest highlight of the episode, however, is none other than- DOUG DIMMADOME OWNER OF THE DIMMSDALE DIMMADOME MAKING HIS DIMMSDALE DIMMA-DEBUT in the episode who repays Timmy’s kindness for reuniting him with his son Dale Dimmadome, (the kid who was forced to make Vicky’s lemonade) by getting Timmy, Chester, and A.J. to see the show by giving them jobs at the Dimmadome.
I think one particular flaw some people will tend to have with the episode is the scene with Cosmo having to exercise himself to death in order to make the secret ingredient and the lemonade, but I don’t mind it as much. It’s still a pretty well-written episode in my books. Great.
17a. Hail to the Chief: Timmy decides to run against Tad and Chad as student body president due to the way they’re treating the non-popular kids. Timmy ends up winning the election when every other kid in school caught food poisoning from Tad and Chad’s cake. Timmy doesn’t seem to be enjoying it, however.
This episode could’ve used some more work. It doesn’t really seem to get any sort of message across since the main conflict of the episode is Timmy turning out not to enjoy his job as student president because of his secret service following him everywhere, preventing him from talking to Trixie, and such. Also, the fact that Timmy manages to become student president by his one vote because of everyone else getting sick felt like a cop-out. And the plot point where Timmy attempts to resign by making his own self look like a nerd (which one scene being the debut of Sanjay’s character for when Timmy joins the Library Assistance Club) felt kinda forced. I didn’t even feel anything much from the ending, where the episode closes with Timmy being surrounded by a group of kids with runny noses…now look, I haven’t seen the episode since a while. Granted, it’s pulled from broadcast, not because of something from this episode, but because of something from its partner episode. Anyways, the episode is alright. There are some jokes here and there, but not one I can always come back to.
In the end, the plot is just nothing special to me and so it results into a very average episode. It’s not good, but there aren’t any moments that get me on my bad side either. Meh.
17b. Twistory: Timmy is doing a school report on the Founding Fathers, so he wishes that they would be brought from the past for his talk show taking place in his treehouse. However, bringing them back from the past has brought a side-effect to the present in which the U.S.A. turns into a British colony. After Cosmo and Wanda lose their wands for taxation, Timmy uses his Time Scooter to go back to the time where Benedict Arnold is tricking the U.S. into surrendering to the British in order to fix the time stream.
So, this is the episode that turned out to be so controversial that it got pulled from broadcast alongside its partner episode, and that reason being the episode’s portrayal of British stereotypes and the thought of the U.S. never being a successful and advanced society if we lost the American Revolution. It was banned…at least until Nicktoons started reairing it since 2017. Seriously, I’ve checked the Nicktoons schedule very often and found the episode being put in rotation at least a couple times. I can probably see why because the episode’s premise is so off the wall that I can’t really take it so seriously. In fact, I think “Twistory” is a better episode than “Hail to the Chief,” because you’re at least learning some things and getting something from watching it. On top of that, there are some pretty good jokes in the episode, with some of the memorable moments coming from the Founding Fathers and Timmy’s parents.
For some people, this episode can be a bit of a stickywicket, but I liked it. Now’s the time that I…must…chop wood! Good.
18a. Fool’s Day Out: It’s April Fools Day and Timmy is tired of being pranked by everyone, so he enlists the April Fool himself to pull some pranks for him. However, the April Fool doesn’t seem to want to stop until it results him into trying to destroy the Earth.
You can tell by this fairly short summary that there isn’t much that I remember about this episode and I’ve had to rely on Alpha Jay Show’s review of the episode in order to talk about this episode at some points. Alpha Jay’s review in particular defends the episode to death. I agree with a few of his points, but it certainly doesn’t change my mind about the episode, looking back. Think of this episode as the series’ equivalent to “I’m with Stupid” or “Fools In April” if you will, because the reactions for “Fool’s Day Out” kinda depends on who you ask. I can imagine some folks hating this episode because of the Timmy abuse, but then again, I barely catch anyone talking about this episode, not only because it airs once in a blue moon like any other holiday specials. If you ask me, it’s also because the main issue that I have with the episode, which has some sort of message that contrasts between what’s funny and what isn’t funny, is that it’s ironically not funny. In other words, a lot of the jokes don’t come off as memorable.
To be fair though, Jorgen does delivers some funny lines, (i.e. “I fear we will never know who was knocking, but I will make it my mission in life to find out!”) but otherwise, the rest of the humor falls flat for me. Like, what if I send off this episode by getting attacked by a groundhog? *Gets mauled by groundhog.* It’s not so funny, right? I’d say the same when it comes to this fairly average episode. Meh.
18b. Déjà Vu: After yet another rough day, Timmy wishes for Cosmo to become a watch that’ll allow for him to re-do moments where he screws up. Timmy then goes back to where his day begins in order to fix those stressful moments. Unfortunately, Vicky then gets her hands on the watch and uses it against Timmy, so now Timmy wishes for Wanda to be his spare re-do watch…and that it’ll only work him.
While I barely caught anybody talking about “Fool’s Day Out,” I’ve caught people talking about this episode more, and I can pretty much see why. It’s not only hilarious, but its’ hilarity is strangely genius. The episode relies on one particular joke, that being Timmy and Vicky resetting a particular moment in time, and what makes the repetitive joke work is that the episode finds ways to still make it funny with scenes including the bit where Timmy launches a water balloon to France, the scenes with Timmy and Vicky dueling it out with their watches, as well as the end with Timmy being taken back to where he met his fairies. Aside from those, I also liked Mr. Turner’s line on The Little Dolphin Who Cried *dolphin chirps.*
The highlight of the episode is mainly its humor, unsurprisingly. Some moments can feel repetitive, but it’s still one of Season 2’s greatest. Too bad it only airs during April Fools’ Day alongside its partner episode. *RE-DO!* Too bad it only airs during April Fools’ Day alongside its partner episode…nope. I guess we’ll still have to deal with that. Great.
19. Information Stupor Highway: Timmy writes an e-mail to Trixie, asking her out to the school dance. After his parents turn it into a romantic and threatening e-mail and send it, Timmy wishes to be inside the internet to get it back. He’s branded as a pink hat computer virus and eventually gets downloaded into Mr. Crocker’s computer, who then traces back the data from Timmy’s computer and records proof of the existence of fairies in the process. Now Timmy has to stop Mr. Crocker from uploading the footage of Cosmo and Wanda to every TV and computer in the world.
Again, the bulk of the episode’s charm is some of the jokes. Some highlights include Mr. Crocker’s slow computer and its otherwise slow downloading speed, a couple scenes that reveal Veronica’s apparent jealousy of Trixie to the point where she wants to be Trixie, the scene with Cosmo “turning off” the computer, the bits with the super-intelligent gorillas, and the gag with the parents of the characters coming into their rooms with a battering ram. Really, I could mention some more jokes from the episode, but anyways, my point is that it’s just a very entertaining episode. Aside from that, I really like the concept, it’s very well-written, and- hey, is that the pink hat computer virus? Great.
20. Scary GodParents: It’s Halloween and Timmy wants to be dressed as one of the Jack-o-Bots from the Crash Nebula Halloween special. Unfortunately, there were only four Jack-o-Bot costumes, which were made for a contest, and they were taken by the popular kids. To make matters worse, every house across Dimmsdale is spoiling the Jack-o-Bot costumes while Timmy, his friends, and his fairies in costume are supervised by Vicky and have to give most of their candy to her. Given how the popular kids are getting treats because their costumes look real, and Vicky is getting treats as well because, well…she is an evil babysitter, Timmy wishes that everyone’s costumes were real and scary. However, this wish causes the popular kids to turn evil and form the Pumpkinator, creating a doomsday device to destroy Earth in the process. Meanwhile, Mark, Jeff, and Erik invade Earth to convince Vicky to escape the doomed planet.
It’s a fairly decent Halloween special. You can tell by my description that there’s a hefty amount of plot elements going on, and that’s what keeps me invested in the episode. Story-wise, the highlight of the episode is the mish-mashed costume Timmy facing off against the Pumpkinator. That’s not the only thing I can give this episode credit for, but I’ll get to everything else later. One issue that some folks will tend to have is the mean-spirited nature of the episode, at least during the first half. I find it understandable since I feel as though that the popular kids are designed to be unlikeable. (Unless in the case of which you are a fan of Trixie and/or Veronica) Granted, the episode starts to get more interesting halfway.
The end of the episode is very pleasant as it ends with Wanda being able to grant Timmy’s wish that everything would be “fake and safe,” the Pumpkinator being un-wished, and the Yugopotamians bomb the Earth…with a piñata full of candy, thus giving every kid in Dimmsdale a batch of candy. It may not be a top-tier animated Halloween special, but it still offers a pretty good treat. Good.
And that’s all of them. Overall, Season 2 was another great season. Great. It doesn’t have tight competition with Season 1, but it’s still got a lot of top-notch gems. Once again, I’m rounding this all up into my Top 5 and the one episode that I recommend the least:
5. Timvisible: A very entertaining and creatively plotted episode in general.
4. Boy Toy: An episode with a well-written plot and a very good moral, in addition to the character establishment with Timmy.
3. Super Bike: A funny, memorable, and charming episode all the way through.
2. The Boy Who Would Be Queen: A very well-written episode that gives Timmy and Trixie some more background and deconstructs gender roles pretty subtly.
1. Fairy Fairy Quite Contrary: Okay, I lied when I said that no other S2 episode could top the aforementioned episode. If you’re looking for an episode with a very well-fleshed out recurring character, moments where Cosmo is at his best and a well-conceived plot in general, then I suggest you’ll really like this episode.
And then there’s the one episode that I enjoyed the least from all the rest. That honor will go to “Hail to the Chief.” There was just barely anything to gain out of that episode, at least in my eyes. A couple of not-so honorable mentions include “Fool’s Day Out” and “Totally Spaced Out.” Expect my Season 3 review to arrive either next month or the month after. And maybe later, I'll do some tweaks with these blog entries.
The rankings so far:
"Excellent:" 7 (9 counting Season 0)
"Great:" 16 (21 counting Season 0)
"Good:" 9 (10 counting Season 0)
"Okay:" 2 (4 counting Season 0)
This type of news is prominent towards my current series of reviews for FOP and it's prominent towards what you're going to see during my reviews for seasons 2-5. The episodes will be ordered by production number, and if any of you have checked to see how the seasons/episodes are arranged in TV.com, Wikipedia, and the Wiki for the show, they aren't very similar as Wikipedia and TV.com lists the episode by premiere order. Due to that, the Wiki for Fairly OddParents is going to be my main source. So, before any of you remind me if I'm missing an episode or if I skipped an episode, I am reviewing the series by production order. In addition, there are also some particular specials that don't follow the main order, namely the Jimmy Timmy crossover trilogy and the Bunsen is a Beast crossover special. Each are associated towards a certain season, and when I get to them, they will apparently be the last episodes I would have to cover for the particular season.
That is all.
Hey all and welcome to another segment of every Fairly OddParents episode reviewed. This time, we're getting into the real meat of the series, starting with its official debut season. Before I do that, here's some more info about my review series:
-Each season will be broken down into my top 5 and my bottom 5; However, there a couple seasons such as S1 for example where I have to break down my bottom 5 into one. Also, if an episode appears in my bottom 5 and it had a "meh" and/or "okay" ranking, that doesn't mean I'm establishing them as bad episodes.
-When all's said and done, all these reviews will be broken down to a top 10, a bottom 10, and a ranking of all the seasons from worst to best.
-Each episode will be introduced or wrapped up with a quirky running joke/quote/etc. or rather any repeated line from the episode itself. I warn you folks that it will become annoying, yet I will have no regrets about it whatsoever if it means reviewing the show by keeping within the spirit of the show's humor that defines FOP as it is.
-I am also open for additional commentary. With fairness, I have a one episode per season per person policy. If someone already ends up nabbing controversial episodes like "It's A Wishful Life," "Fairly OddBaby," and "The Big Fairy Share Scare!" or very well-loved episodes like "Channel Chasers," "The Boy Who Would Be Queen," "Fairy Idol," "Birthday Wish!," and the first two Timmy Jimmys and Wishologys, there's always room for the 'next best thing' for you to cover. So if you want to contribute to this series with some of your own thoughts on an episode, please let me know!
1a. The Big Problem!: After being pushed around in school and by Vicky, Timmy decides he's tired of being little and wishes to be older - and once he gets his wish, he immediately realizes that being an adult is not as peachy as he had imagined. such moments like his hair growing out of his head and into his back, and for the most part, he looks just plain creepy. To make matters worse, Timmy has a few hours to try and fix the wish as his fairies are threatened to be reassigned due to the fact that Da Rules can't allow fairies to grant wishes to adults.
"Relatable" doesn't even begin to describe the episode. When the episode illustrates the pitfalls of adult life, the writers go hard on it. And granted that this is one of many of the first episodes of the series, this episode is provided with a chunk of good jokes, such as when Timmy goes to see an adult movie and gets sickened by a scene with adults kissing, that of course answers the question on why his parents couldn't bring little Timmy to the movie. Aside from that, there's also the small bit with older Timmy shaving. (Speaking from my own experience, I do it every week and i hate it most of the time.) The ending is also pretty satisfying as Timmy and his fairies see a loophole in Da Rules and he tries whatever to act 10 so he could be able to fix the wish, and the moment where Timmy ends up in jail and gets on the verge of losing his fairies before bursting into an emotional breakdown does he manage to fix the wish. What's also neat about the episode is that we get to see a side of Vicky in which we get know that she does care about Timmy, but of course in the case in which something bad could've happened to Timmy and if it came down to that fact, it would've affected her job as a babysitter too.
And so, the moral is: being an adult....SCREW THAT. What's also important to note that starting with this episode, Tara Strong voices Timmy Turner, we get to see the faces of Timmy's parents, and we see Chester, AJ, and Francis for the first time, all of which will becoming recurring characters immediately so, so it's not just Vicky (*SBC crashes*) that we're going to see pretty often. In other words, the episode is not perfect, but it's a near-excellent start to the series. Great.
1b. Power Mad!: Timmy doesn't want to play a video game filled with fuzzy bunnies so he wishes for Cosmo and Wanda to conjure a video game that's deliberately challenging, and so challenging that it's also a life-threatening nightmare that "you can't wish yourself out of." After Chester and AJ put the virtual reality helmets on, it's up to Timmy to save them from game over, but he also has to help beat the game. Cosmo and Wanda meanwhile also have to keep Vicky from killing the power in the house as it would also threaten the lives of Timmy and his two friends.
If "The Big Problem!" is not the definition of an instant classic episode in my eyes, then this episode surely is, especially when I grew up on video games at the same time as growing up on cartoons such as this particular show. Suffice to say, the episode works as a solid combination of the two. The episode plot to "Power Mad!" is very engaging, and it's got a lot of good jokes to boot. The segment with Cosmo and Wanda distracting Vicky with their own improvised television programs is what really got me. The episode also has an intriguing moment whereas Timmy sacrifices himself to keep Chester and AJ from losing a life from the Vicky robot in the game, which results in Timmy having a surplus of points, giving him an additional life because of his good deed.
What else can say besides that there's no boring moment in this episode? It's so much fun to watch that it warrants the "excellent" ranking. Yes, two episodes in and I already touched down on an episode that I absolutely loved. What am I, four? Excellent.
2a. Spaced Out: After enjoying the latest segment of Crash Nebula, Timmy decides to spice up the fun reenacting the show by wishing up a real alien to play with. As it turns out, the alien that Cosmo and Wanda poofed up is a prince from the planet Yugopotamia and his parents are heading towards Earth to find him. Meanwhile, Mark falls in love with Vicky, mistaken for a kid in an alien costume. This prompts for Timmy to try and talk to the king and queen of Yugopotamia to convince Mark to come home.
The episode has a good variety of memorable moments, but sometimes...not so memorable. Some of the highlights of the episode are Cosmo and his girl nickel, Phillip, and the three perils that Timmy had to face in order to have permission to talk to the king and queen. The storyline and characters are also pretty neat and creative, especially when it comes to the Yugopotamians. Anyways, I have some good news and bad news. The good news is that I really liked this episode. The bad news is that there isn't much else for me to say about it. Great.
2b. Transparents!: During show and tell, Timmy shows a dinosaur to his class. His teacher believes that Timmy somehow used FAIRY! GOD! PARENTS! to genetically engineer an extinct creature. His teacher then asks Timmy for a parent to teacher conference. In the meantime, Timmy's dinosaur ends up wandering around the school and asks Chester and AJ to get back his "uncle's dog" for him during the meeting. Timmy doesn't want to have to explain his show and tell with his real parents being involved, so he wishes for Cosmo and Wanda to pose as his parents. However, because they have to pretend to be human, they can't use magic. Timmy's teacher, who is obsessed with FAIRY! GOD! PARENTS!, attempts to exposes Timmy's fake parents as FAIRIES! and he won't be seen as a nutcase anymore if he manages to prove the existence of them.
So, this episode is a pretty big deal. This is the episode that introduces to us one of the most iconic characters in the entire series, and it's none other than....wait for it, Mr. Denzel Crocker. I don't really need to explain most of the jokes that Crocker covers in this episode, because simply put, he makes this episode. One of the most iconic characters on the show with a solid introduction to the character to boot. Besides Mr. Crocker, the rest of the episode's jokes also work very well. Other moments include the many attempts with Cosmo and Wanda trying to act human, and the coffee scene. Without a doubt, one of the funniest episodes in the series. Must be the work of FAIRY! GOD! PARENTS! And yes, I'll stop now. Excellent.
3a. A Wish Too Far!: Timmy has a crush on the most popular girl in school: Trixie Tang. Unfortunately, Timmy is one of the most unpopular kids in school alongside Chester, AJ, and Elmer, and Trixie's way too out of his league to the point where she refuses to talk to him. Timmy wants to be popular so he wishes to be dressed like them to get Trixie's attention. Eventually, he lies to the popular kids about a party at his mansion, so Timmy decides to wish up a party in his house...at least until Timmy and his fairies are taken to fairy court by force, 'cause as it turns out, Timmy wasn't treating his fairies with respect, and that trying be the rich, popular kids has turned him into a bit of a jerk.
This was a pretty enjoyable episode, but the biggest highlight of the episode is the moral and what leads up to it. Not that honesty's the best policy and such, but that being someone that you aren't isn't really worth it. At the end, Timmy ends up sacrificing his chance of still being popular by telling the popular kids that he was never had the things the popular kids had in the first place and he'd rather be appreciated for the way he was. Of course, because the rich kids are so stuck up, they leave Timmy for Chad and Tad's party at their yacht. Trixie, however, tells Timmy that she appreciates his honesty before she leaves.
Yeah, it must be boring that I'm still summarizing the episode to get my points across, but don't worry, I'm going to leave that by also mentioning that Timmy gets his fairies back by declaring a friendship with Elmer, calling him his "back up Timmy" and all. For the most part, the episode is also filled with other heartwarming moments like when Timmy admits his selfishness towards Cosmo and Wanda and tells them that he was sorry during the fairy court scene. This is also pretty minor, but the one bit with Cosmo and Wanda showing Timmy their chart (exemplifying how much they care about them) also gets to me. It's not an episode that I would always come back to, but it's still a very well-written episode. Need I explain the chart? Great.
3b. Tiny Timmy!: Timmy is trying to do a school report on the human body, most preferably towards microscopic organisms. While Vicky is over at the Turners' to watch Timmy again, his parents warn her not to break the $50,000 vase. For Timmy's school project, his fairies poof him up a shrink suit that will allow him to see microscopic organisms. Eventually, the shrunken Cosmo and Wanda end up getting eaten by Vicky. After finding out about this, and because he can't return to normal size with the shrink suit, Timmy has no other option than to go inside Vicky's body and find his fairies.
Not one of my favorite episodes, but it's still a enjoyable one. Some jokes that I liked were the gags centering around Timmy''s short attention span, and the one scene where Timmy ends up making Vicky ridiculous nice while inside Vicky's sub-conscious. The episode also has a weird where the fixed vase ends up getting smashed due to Timmy's short attention span, only to reveal that the vase was bought on the internet for a single dollar, despite being worth and insured for $50,000. There's also the end scene with Timmy getting an F on his report and telling his fairies that he now needs to research the wonders of the universe...so bored, can't focus... Still a good episode, though. Good.
4a. Father Time!: Timmy wishes that he has heat vision so he wouldn't have to be stuck inside his house doing chores. Momentarily, Timmy accidentally melts his dad's racing trophy, which angers him. He's so upset about getting punished that he wishes that he could go back in time to prevent his dad from ever winning the "dumb trophy." And so, Cosmo and Wanda poof him up a time scooter as Timmy and his fairies goes back to the 70s to meet the younger version of dad. However, preventing dad from winning the trophy has only caused for history to change significantly as Timmy then finds himself in the present where his dad has taken over the world (with smiles!).
This is a very creative episode that was also dangerously close to the "excellent" ranking. I liked the whole idea about Timmy trying to stop his dad from winning the trophy, 'cause this is the kind of anecdote that will easily give us the impression that Timmy will realize that he has made a mistake trying to change the course of history, but the rest of the episode's story makes it work. I really like the intentional hilarity of a dystopian Dimmsdale with Timmy's dad as its dictator. And of course, how can I even mention the episode without bringing up one of the most frequently quoted lines: "And this is where I'd keep my trophy. IF I HAD ONE!" Although, I think the best joke from the episode is part of the end where it's revealed that the Internet is now called the "Timmy" and Timmy's name ends up becoming "Internet." I brought it down a bit because of the weird ending with future Timmy melting dad's trophy, that in which only raises some questions for me. It's still a very solid episode, and you all better feel the same way. Or else! Great.
4b. Apartnership!: While Timmy is planning his parents' anniversary dinner, Cosmo shows Timmy what he's done for Wanda to celebrate their anniversary. However, Wanda comes home in a bad mood and storms off to the fishbowl. Cosmo thinks Wanda forget about their anniversary and decides to go back to Mama Cosma in Fairy World. Wanda eventually comes back and ensures Timmy that their anniversary was the "False Anger Anniversary," but Timmy tells Wanda that Cosmo was really upset and went back to his mother. Cosmo and Wanda eventually get in a magic fight until Timmy wishes for it to stop. Mama Cosma then decides whether her son should stay with Wanda or be with one of two of her bachelorette robots Star and Twinkle by putting him in a game show hosted by Cupid.
The episode has some pretty good jokes, but it mostly had some alright jokes. I do appreciate the episode's plot, however. It's a fairly simple episode that justifies Cosmo and Wanda's love for each other. The best bits about the episode are the small scene with Timmy's parents waiting for Timmy's anniversary dinner and the set-up nature of the game show, Cosmo's question cards being a given. There's no particular running joke in this episode, so I'll just leave it here: I liked it, but not strongly. Good.
5a. Chin Up!: Timmy goes to a costume convention and ends up feeling disappointed in seeing the fake Crimson Chin, his favorite superhero. Timmy then wishes to see the real deal, thus the Crimson Chin comes to life from his comic book. However, Crimson Chin mistakes people in costumes as his arch-enemies, and so Timmy wishes that the Chin was powerless so that they don't get hurt. As Chin returns to the comic book world, the comics end up in the wastebin as Chin lost the will to fight, filling the pages up with him in a fetal position. This causes Timmy to appear inside the comic book world to try and bring back C.C.'s fighting spirit.
This is a pretty solid introduction to the Crimson Chin. While I can say that most of the jokes from this episode were funny, I'll admit that some of the moments with the Chin's depressive state kinda annoyed me. Don't get the wrong idea, though. I absolutely love Jay Leno's performance as the Chin. The Bronze Kneecap, however, was the best character in this episode, in my eyes. The episode also has a solid end and climax too, by bringing back the Chin's senses when Timmy ends up in danger (by telling him what his imaginary friend would do), before they team up to defeat the Bronze Kneecap. For a remarkable episode, this certainly calls for a celebratory snack. *shakes ketchup bottle* Stupid ketchup! Great.
5b. Dog's Day Afternoon: Timmy is annoyed with how Vicky spoils her dog Doidle. Thinking life as a dog would be neat, Timmy wishes that he and Doidle's brains would be swapped. Doidle ends up enjoying life as a human boy while Timmy finds some downsides to being in Doidle's body as Vicky made an appointment to get Doidle "fixed" just like her other pets. Timmy tries to wish himself back inside his own body, but he's unable to communicate normally due to being in a dog's body, which means Doidle has to make the wish. In the meantime, Cosmo and Wanda go separately to keep watch of either Timmy or Doidle.
This is a decent episode, to put it bluntly. There wasn't anything too special from this segment for me to talk about. One thing I'll at least add is the conversation between the mind-swapped Doidle and Timmy that boggled my mind as a child. Being older now, I get what happened. Anyways, some of the jokes that I liked included the bit with AJ and his feeling of a "massive violation of his personal space," that of course was a kinda sly adult joke that I just noticed recently, and of course there's also the end scene with Spunky the hamster. To sum up my thoughts, all I need to say is this: Oh boy! A decent episode! Good.
6a. Dream Goat!: Timmy, taking a tour of City Hall, feels disheartened to see the mayor's faithful goat caged up, after wishing to read Chompy's mind, he then wishes that he was freed. However, it doesn't take a while for the mayor to notice that the goat is missing. Vicky and Timmy are caught standing around the empty cage. Vicky is accused of being a goat-napper while Timmy, with his underwear on his head, is seen as a hero. Timmy feels guilty about being called a hero as he wished Chompy out of his cage and eventually starts making wishes in his sleep. Timmy then wishes for Cosmo and Wanda to poof him to where Chompy has gone off to so that he could convince him to return to Dimmsdale and eventually tell Dimmsdale the truth about Chompy, despite that he has a family now.
This the episode where the "honesty is the best policy" moral could apply here, but when it comes to the climax where the crowd forms an angry mob, I question if it's safe to consider the episode as moral-driven. In the end, it's still a decent episode with a pretty good ending. The highlight of the episode is pretty much the gag where Timmy's dad screams like a girl. Sadly though, that's not the recurring joke that I'm sending off my thoughts on this episode with. *Spit take* Good.
6b. The Same Game: Timmy's game of Timmy Ball gets cut short when it ends up in the yard of a scary dentist. Timmy goes back home, not worried about not getting the ball back, but he's annoyed about Dr. Bender and Wendell being full of themselves for their perfect teeth in comparison to Timmy's. And so, Timmy wishes that everyone in Dimmsdale looked exactly alike. Everyone turns into dull grey blobs, but it eventually becomes a problem when the fairies are unable to recognize their godkid. Under the threat of magical buildup, Cosmo and Wanda need to find Timmy before they explode. Meanwhile, Timmy tries to find a way to get Cosmo and Wanda to recognize him.
This is a great episode with a creative plot. In fact, I have more to say on the plot than towards the episode's humor. The whole bit with the outsides being changed and not the insides was a creative way to move past the episode's concept of a dull, grey world filled with dull, grey blobs, as well as towards the humor built around everything in Dimmsdale being dull and grey. I also liked the small moment where despite Bender and Wendell looking the same, they still see themselves as "greyer and blobbier" than all the rest, which is an unusual example of foreshadowing. The end is pretty solid too with Timmy fixing the wish, but wait...this isn't the end of the episode when we still got the plot between Timmy and Bender unresolved, at least before the episode actually ends with Timmy's mom stepping in to get Bender to return the ball which results into her knocking Bender's dentures out of his mouth with the ball. Now that's satisfying. Simply put, this episode is very amusing...and grey! Great.
7. Christmas Everyday!: Everyone loves Christmas. No school, no evil babysitter, just playing with your gifts and spending time with your parents. Timmy loves it so much that he wishes that it would be Christmas each day. This wish ends up being a major problem when the elves go on strike from making more toys, places like banks and supermarkets still being closed down, and people all around Dimmsdale are trying to stop Santa from coming. Things only get worse when Cosmo and Wanda are unable to fix the wish since all the fairy magic had been transferred to Santa Claus, and when the other magical creatures that represent their respective holidays plot vengeance against Santa and plan to banish him to a non-existent date because, due to the wish, the other holidays cannot come. Timmy then has to travel all the way to the North Pole (with the help of other kids) to stop the other holiday mascots from taking his magic.
I've already considered this as an instant classic animated Christmas special in the modern era, but on top of that, this episode is one of my absolute favorite modern Christmas specials. The main reason for that is because The Fairly OddParents takes on a completely different kind of story and make it work so significantly well. At these times, most modern Christmas specials usually drag out the Dickens or get inspiration from any other Christmas special and skip rope with it (NOT that I'm saying that "The Fright Before Christmas" is not a good episode that doesn't do anything different with its source of inspiration. That was also a really enjoyable episode IMO).
"Christmas Everyday!" is a special kind of a holiday special as it provides a lot of creative depth in an idea of corrupting a simple and lighthearted wish like Christmas being everyday, let alone prove the downsides of Christmas being everyday. I also really enjoyed the idea of creating a cast of characters comprised of holiday mascots and have them play a role against Christmas, especially when the story develops these characters into those that give us the impression that, while they feel overshadowed by the spirit of Christmas, they want to spread joy and make children happy with the holidays that they represent, just like Santa Claus. Even a lot of the jokes are solid too, with lines like some of the ones during the respective song, ("I got pudding, I got slacks; I got all my backhair waxed!" and "Cuz Timmy just can't get a girlfriend.") as well the one line with Timmy lampshading how he got to Greenland with no problems before he loses his snowmobile. (Following the line: "Well, that's inconvenient.")
This episode is so good that I'd wish that every episode could be "Christmas Everyday!" but I have my reasons against that. Fantastic as always, just like you Noggy - I mean, SBC. Excellent.
And that's all of them. Like Season 0, this season was pretty short, but despite being comprised of only 13 episodes, this is deserving of a near-excellent ranking. Great. What a wonderful start to a great cartoon series. At this point, I'm hard-pressed to end up liking a season more than Season 1 after analyzing it. It'll probably be funny if I end up ranking S1 as the highest and S10 as the lowest.
Now then, let's break down this entire season to my top 5:
5. The Same Game: a creatively written episode with a well-executed story.
4. A Wish Too Far!: an interesting story with a very well thought out moral.
3. Power Mad!: an interesting plot with some entertaining jokes. In other words, it's an all-around fun episode to watch.
2. TransParents!: A hilarious episode that's otherwise a solid introduction to Mr. Crocker
1. Christmas Everyday!: No contest. No questions asked.
As for the the one episode that I enjoyed the least out of all of them, that honor goes to "Dog's Day Afternoon." That should wrap up my review for Season 1 for right now. Next time, and sometime this month, I'll be covering Season 2, with its extended variety of episodes. 13 down, 270 to go.
The rankings so far:
"Excellent:" 3 (5 counting Season 0)
"Great:" 6 (11 counting Season 0)
"Good:" 4 (5 counting Season 0)
"Okay:" 0 (2 counting Season 0)
After being around for 10 years, you know it would be a matter of time before I would move over to something that I should've done a long while ago, and here it is: my top ten episodes from Phineas & Ferb from SBC's favorite show...
Man, those were some crazy times.
Well, it's 5 months overdue, which is a good time for me to do this now. I did write something before I decided to put this countdown on hold, but since I didn't save it, I thought that I would cut this introduction short. I'm not doing a bottom 10 list because I don't think talking about some of my least favorite episodes wouldn't be so fun, aside from the fact there isn't so much contempt that I can make out of them. if you're all still wondering what my bottom 10 would look like, here you go:
Before I start, here's a shortlist of honorable mentions.
Bully Bromance Breakup
This Is Your Backstory
Oh, There You Are, Perry
Happy Birthday, Isabella
I Scream, You Scream
Thaddeus and Thor
Any questions regarding my likeness towards any one of these episodes, just ask. Now onto the list proper:
That should officially wrap up my top 10 list for my favorite P&F episodes. I'm going to do another separate countdown for the series' songs later on, but I'm not sure when. I have other matters on my own hands with another, certain cartoon series that I've started reviewing...
Odd parents, Fairly OddParents
Wands and wings
Floaty crowny things
Odd parents, FAIRLY ODDPARENTS
Yeah, I think I remember now that I have plans to review every episode of Fanboy and Chum Chum, or...hmmm, I don't really know. Anyways, another review is coming up. And it's coming up pretty soon now that I just remembered the exact show...
Remember when I said that I was keeping a surprise for you guys? This is it right here. You've read the title and now you're all probably asking yourselves, "why? Why are you going to watch every single episode of a show that plummeted in quality since Season 7/8/9/10?" See, no matter how awful the current state of FOP is in these days, I still consider myself a fan of this show. The show that I loved ever since holds so much nostalgic value for me and FOP is a part of why I've wanted to get into the animation industry myself, much like SpongeBob. I'm also going to give all my respect to Butch Hartman when it's due. Like I've already said once, forget all that I've said when I blamed the show's decline on him when all my blame goes to his current writing team. Speaking of which, I'm not going to say names during my reviews, even when I get to the later seasons like seasons 9 and 10, because I'm not the kind of guy who curses out the people who wrote my least favorite episodes. Some of my criticisms for certain episodes will sound harsh, but I'm still going to make myself sound fair towards them. Unrelated to this post, don't worry about my Top 10 Phineas & Ferb episodes list, I'm going to get back to it after this. I was planning to get it out by August but something bad came up during the timeframe I was going to write it up, which is why I put it on hold for such a while.
And yes, I'm technically ripping off PieGuy's Every SpongeBob Episode Reviewed format, but I felt like someone was gonna have to do this kind of thing with The Fairly OddParents. No one has done it yet, so why not that I do it right now? Hoping that you guys won't pull a Vailskibum on me and call this review series a rip-off on point, I'm going to start up my reviews with the short series of episodes that started it all: a series of shorts that some fans have collectively called "Season 0," otherwise known as the Oh Yeah! Cartoons years.
Before I begin, here's the ranking system:
"Excellent" = Solid 10/10. I absolutely enjoyed and appreciated this episode.
"Great" = Ranges from 8 or a 9 out of 10. I really liked this episode.
"Good" = A 7/10. Not quite up there, but I found this episode pleasant enough.
"Okay" = A strong 6/10. This already speaks for itself.
"Meh" = Ranges from a strong 5 to a light 6 out of 10. I found this episode mediocre at best, but not too detestable either.
"Scum" = Or should I say..."Fairly ScumParents episode." Hahaha no. "Scum" is only up my alley. Operates at a 2-4/10. I loathed this episode.
"Irredeemable" = A solid 1/10. Not only have I really despised this episode, but I would treat it as a cautionary tale and convince fellow viewers to avoid it at all costs.
"The Fairly OddParents" - For those who don't know, The Fairly OddParents had its start as a series of 10 short episodes for Oh Yeah! Cartoons. This was the series that clicked with Nickelodeon right away before it officially premiered in 2001. The show first debuted from the variety series on September 4, 1998, which makes the show slightly older than SpongeBob SquarePants by that technicality. This short in question is exactly how the main story of FOP starts. Timmy is left at home with Vicky babysitting him one day. He wants Vicky to stop pushing him around and for his parents to return home from the movies soon enough before he unexpectedly meets his fairy godparents to help grant his wishes whenever he feels miserable. So, the main question about this episode is: what do I think about? Is it such a classic start? It would definitely be a classic if I give this an "Excellent" rating, but re-watching this episode, I feel weirded out towards some bits. One thing you'll all tell me right away is Cosmo's voice, which sounds deep in comparison to what Cosmo's voice has sounded like since such a long time, or Timmy's voice originally being provided by the late Mary Kay Bergman. Those two things considered, the weirdest thing, however, is that FOP's Oh Yeah Cartoons' art style feels very simple in comparison to the successful show. This style that Butch went for makes me feel like the show is taking place during the 60's or 70's because the short feels like it was made during that time period, not that I'm saying it's a bad thing, but it's what gives 1998's FOP that unique feel. When it comes to the story, the first half is great. As for the latter half, it's basically nothing more than Timmy's fairies giving Vicky a taste of her own medicine. Some of the slapstick from those scenes are pretty creative, but I wouldn't really consider this a classic introduction to the then-show. So, I feel this short is deserving of this ranking: Great.
"Too Many Timmys!" - In this episode, Vicky lies to Timmy's parents that her back is not feeling very well and they leave Timmy alone with her and to take care of her while they go to the plunger festival. Of course, this means that Timmy has to do everything that Vicky asks for him to do. Already knowing that he doesn't want to handle it, Timmy wishes up 44 1/2 clones of himself. Likewise with the past short episode, it's a simple concept with a simple story, but I really got some entertainment from this one. I liked the tiny Timmy clone, and I also really liked the scene with the barbershop quartet of Timmys, and the one bit where Vicky sees another Timmy clone while holding onto another. It's a simple yet entertaining comedic episode that warrants this ranking: Great.
"Where's the Wand?" - Want to know a little something funny about this episode? When Nickelodeon used to re-aired these older episodes to promote the Crimson Chin and Cleft webtoons, this particular episode never re-aired and so I never heard of this episode until I discovered on the Internet that there was another Oh Yeah! Cartoons short of FOP that I never saw. Anyways, this episode starts off with Timmy's parents coming home after Vicky babysits Timmy. Vicky was getting ready for a costume party at her school. In the meantime, Timmy is playing pirates with his fairies until Timmy knocks Wanda's wand out of the window, eventually landing in the emergency costume supplies that Vicky was carrying over to the party. This prompts for Timmy and his fairies to try and get the wand back as they fear what Vicky could do with the wand's magic. The final result is a pretty typical episode where hilarity ensues, but there was a lot of funny moments here and there, like Timmy and his fairies heading to the dance in form of a pumpkin coach, the dull-sounding German band, and the parents' continuing involvement with mundane stuff (i.e. going to a sprinkler foundation meeting), likewise in the last episode I talked about. Great.
"Party of Three!" - Once again we have another episode dealing with Vicky coming over to babysit Timmy, but in this short, Timmy tries to prove his parents that he can take care of himself at home. Timmy's parents trust him and tell Vicky otherwise that she doesn't need to babysit him now, and so Timmy decides to poof up a party in the Turner household for that occasion. Vicky then decides to spy on Timmy to see if he really is doing good by himself and instantly notices that Timmy is having a party in his house. Candace- I mean, Vicky sees this as an opportunity to bust Timmy and convince his parents to come home to prove that Timmy is reckless by himself, only for them to come to Timmy acting well-behaved and all and for Vicky to end up wasting their time. The episode doesn't have a happy end, as it ends with Timmy's parents noticing Timmy's poor dental hygiene, prompting for his parents to depend on Vicky to continue taking care of him. Despite that, I think this episode cemented FOP as a soon-to-be hit for Nickelodeon, because there was a lot of good jokes in the short, and for the most part, it was really fun to watch, even at this time. The ending can feel a bit like a cop-out, but it was an unusual and reasonable way to stick to the status quo. As for the jokes, I really like the emergencies gag. One joke that struck me the most was this line: "What is this fascination with my fanny?" In short, it's a charming and mostly entertaining episode that I think moves beyond the "Great" rating. In other words... Excellent.
"The Fairy Flu!" - Timmy gets invited to Tootie's birthday party, but he's not all happy about it because Tootie has a massive crush on him and she's Vicky's little sister. In the meantime, Cosmo has been sneezing a lot, creating a discharge of unusual fairy magic in the process. As it turns out, Cosmo has the Fairy Flu. Eventually, regardless of what kind of trouble Cosmo may cause while he's sick, Timmy goes to Tootie's party before Wanda eventually catches the same flu and Timmy has to cure his two fairies in the guise of balloons. In the end, Timmy gives Cosmo and Wanda sauerkraut in order to cure the flu before they manage to turn Vicky back to normal. Unfortunately, Timmy gets sick due to his sauerkraut allergy, thus allowing for Vicky to watch him and for Tootie to take care of him. Again, it's not a very sweet ending, but regardless, the episode was still very entertaining. Some of the jokes I found pretty funny was Timmy's house being sent to space, Tootie opening up the door to see Timmy having a toilet for a head, the gag with the distressed clown at the party, and the one bit with Vicky explaining the party rules only to turn into a frog. It's a funny, well-written episode, if not one of the absolute best due to the ending. Great.
"The Temp!" - Halfway through the shorts and we get an episode that focuses more on Timmy and his fairies and a lot less on Vicky. In "The Temp!", Timmy is assigned a temporary fairy godparent while Cosmo and Wanda renew their godparent licenses at the Godparent Academy with Jorgen. Timmy's temp eventually arrives, who happens to be an elf whose only kind of magic is the ability to make toys. Eventually, the elf, Jeff, proves more to be a lousy replacement when he can't meet most of Timmy's demands. The two subplots with the academy and the temp go on until Timmy's room catches on fire. Before Cosmo and Wanda could wish the fire to be put out, Santa Claus arrives to find Jeff, who happened to have had stowed away from the North Pole before the episode ends with Timmy's room back to normal and Cosmo doing an impression of Jorgen. Yeah...you can tell by my need to summarize that I didn't remember this episode so well, let alone enjoy it. It's still an alright episode, but it has its flaws, like the two subplots that just don't add as much interesting. I did like the concept though and I feel there could've been more ground to cover for it. Okay.
"The Zappys!" - In this short episode, Timmy's fairies get nominated for a Zappy award and so the trio attends the ceremony hosted by a fairy version of Billy Crystal. Meanwhile, Timmy's buck tooth becomes loose and fears that he'll lose it for good. At the awards ceremony, Jorgen constantly forces Billy Crystal Ball to give him every Zappy that he's nominated for due to every fairy in Fairy World being afraid of him. In the last award presented, Timmy tells the audience why he loves his godparents so much, that it makes Billy Crystal Ball refuse giving the award to Jorgen and to give it to Cosmo and Wanda. Jorgen tries to take the Zappy from Timmy, but when that happens, Timmy's buck tooth falls out after getting hit by the Zappy, causing the Tooth Fairy, one of the most famed fairies in Fairy World, to appear at the awards show. Because Jorgen is in a relationship with the Tooth Fairy, he gets nervous and ends up trying to make up to Timmy after angering the Tooth Fairy for knocking his teeth out by giving him his own pair of teeth. Final thoughts, there were some very good moments in this episode. Some of the jokes that really got me was the one scene with Jorgen threatening Billy Crystal Ball to start the ceremony without skimming through his jokes, and the little freakout from the Tooth Fairy about showing up in public without her makeup. However, the best moment in this short episode was Timmy explaining why he loves his fairies so much. It's also one of those moments that strongly defined FOP for what it was, but other than that, there was also the bit where Cosmo and Wanda tell Timmy that they didn't care about winning their award and care more about spending time with their godchild, that moment in which is equally as heartwarming. So yeah, it's very pleasant and enjoyable for a short episode. Excellent.
"Scout's Honor" - Here's a little interesting fact coming from me, this particular short episode was my first exposure to The Fairly OddParents in general. I was interested in the concept that this pitch for a show was going on and thought it could catch on at some point. I don't remember exactly when I came across this, but I was right. FOP would eventually be greenlit and become one of Nickelodeon's most successful shows. Anyways, "Scout's Honor" deals with Timmy trying to earn a Squirrel Scouts badge for capturing a mythical creature. Pretty interesting to note, Timmy denies help from use of fairy magic through his Squirrel Scouts knowledge by citing a passage from his handbook. Meanwhile, Vicky, camp counselor of the Cream Puffs scouts, attempts to scare Timmy by pretending to be Bigfoot. As for some of my other thoughts on the episode, I thought it was good, there was a sizeable amount of good jokes like the spiritual Bigfoot joke, and Vicky blackmailing the Cream Puffs with their report cards. (the scene in particular that shows that someone apparently failed in Lunch.) I also liked just how knowledge and dedicated Timmy is as a Squirrel Scout, as it serves as an unintentional way of proving that Timmy is very talented in something whereas the later show would write Timmy's character as someone who's good at such things like perfect attendance and what else. Because of these moments, this short episode barely attains an 8/10 rating for me. Great.
"The Really Bad Day!" - I'm going to make this one brief since I barely remember much from this short episode. In this episode, it's Cosmo's turn to be "bad," due to a tradition where a certain fairy has to be bad for a certain amount of time. However, Cosmo is not very good at being bad, and so Timmy uses fairy magic to enlist Genghis Khan to help Cosmo to be bad before he becomes bad enough to devise a plan to blow up the Earth. I think there could've been more done with the main concept, but in retrospect, I found this episode slightly more enjoyable than "The Temp!" The episode also ends in a fairly light note, which is decent enough, but at the end of the day, it's still alright in my eyes. Okay.
"Super Humor" - Last episode from Oh Yeah! Cartoons, and interestingly enough, it premiered at the same time that the official show did. I really like the main concept with Timmy trying a variety of superpowers only to notice that they have their own pitfalls. What really got to me was when Timmy becomes Turbo Timmy and wishes up a villain before wishing for super vision to find its weak spots, and the wish ends up being parental supervision. I have to admit, this was one joke that really flew past me when I was younger. When it comes to the other jokes, there isn't much I can say. Otherwise, "Super Humor" is decent at best. Good.
And that's all of them. For an EP-sized season - a series of shorts from Oh Yeah! Cartoons, no less, my final thoughts on this unofficial seasons is that it's a really great one. Great. It's filled with some really good charm, wit, and some of the shorts are forgotten gems when it comes to the series in general.
Now, because this is a short season, I'm going to break them down to my top three, with my third favorite being "The Fairy Flu!": an interesting premise with a good amount of wit that barely missed the excellent tier. Second place is "Party of Three!": an episode I remember enjoying during my youth and still enjoy to this day. Lastly, my choice for the best Oh Yeah! Cartoons short for FOP is undoubtedly "The Zappys!" Humorous and heartwarming all the same. As for my worst...I don't have a bottom three, and there isn't even a short that I could consider as such. However, just to pick one that I've enjoyed the least, that honor would go to "The Temp!"
That's 10 down and...283 episodes/segments from the main show to go. It's a long road ahead for me, and it's also going to be a long road before I touch down on the first episode that I gave a "Scum" rating. Hopefully I'll get my next review for Season 1 out in January, and I'll also try and pick up the pace by reviewing the Season 2 episodes on that same month. Till then, see you guys on the flip side.
Well, I've made yet another comeback with a new blog entry. Expect a lot more entertainment-related entries like these, because there's actually a lot more topics in mind that I wanted to cover. For this entry, I'm going to take a look back at music, since I am caught up with the newest trends in pop music. "Despacito" is still #1, "Shape of You" is still in the top 10, "Say You Won't Let Go" is still in the top 20, and everyone all of a sudden wants to collaborate with Gucci Mane and Quavo. But most of all, the year 2017 in pop music is what I'd like to call the "saddest year for pop music." I'm saying this because, as of current, pop music is longer all about upbeat, uplifting pop music, it now ranges from downbeat, dark, blunt, and straight up heartache. One noticeable change in these current pop music trends is the lack of demand for female pop stars like Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Britney Spears, and perhaps even Camila Cabello, Miley Cyrus, and Kesha if this trend continues. all of these artists that I name-dropped specialize in making upbeat or uplifting pop music. I mean, we do have some upbeat pop music hanging around in the charts, and we do at least have some female pop singers left that are still seeing success, but what we have right now are names like Halsey and Julia Michaels who make generally downbeat pop. Taking a look at the pop airplay charts speaks for itself on what's happening to some of these type of pop songs right now:
The pop charts are also looking to be a bit of a sausage-fest at this point:
Now that I have made my point across, I'd also like to dedicate this topic into reviewing some of the songs from female pop stars since the past year that have either fallen off the Hot 100 drastically, or are at risk of falling off so soon:
Anyways, that is all that I have discuss here. These days, I'm hoping that the pop trends change because there's nothing I miss more than female pop acts having such big momentum on the pop charts, or that we would have more of a positive mindset when it comes to these type of songs, cuz' most of the ones that dramatically fell off the Hot 100 are actually really good, IMO.
Since...maybe the past year, people, including I, have been very argumentative about the state of Cartoon Network. Just recently, Cartoon Network Russia has announced a LEGO Movie spin-off for its lineup, and it is a spin-off based on Unikitty. Based on the first impressions that I've seen, people were skeptical about the series, because the style was very reminiscent towards Teen Titans Go, and some others saw it as an immediate cash grab. I feel this kind of skepticism was expected because we all had to live through the overexposure of Teen Titans Go, as well as the whole aftermath of the Powerpuff Girls and Ben 10 reboots. This spin-off will soon be broadcasted in Russia as well as across Cartoon Network Europe, without any possible indication that it could also be brought to the States....so why are we worrying about this now?
I guess the best way to start is to acknowledge the month of March in 2017, that in which was a serious drought for Cartoon Network in America, prominently because of its scheduling tactic. The network's schedule was grandiose in Teen Titans Go, Gumball, and the Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs animated series of all things. As you can see, I have a lot in my mind about the current state of Cartoon Network, and this argument will detail all the topics that I'm meaning to discuss just now. The first thing I'm addressing Cartoon Network's emphasis on comedic cartoons, and unsurprisingly, this is the type of content that gets such fair treatment. However, let me point out that CN is not the only victim to this, as Nickelodeon's recent animated output have been infamous for its attempts in creating comedic content. Breadwinners, Sanjay & Craig, Pig Goat Banana Cricket, etc., they've all been derided for its lack of comedic appeal, and it's easier to determine that Nicktoon shows such as those have been brought out by the highers up of Nickelodeon Animation, so they could see if any one could try and match the success of SpongeBob. I can understand why some folks would complain about CN's emphasis on comedy, as it can be seen as a pitfall for the Network for not taking risks and balancing out more serious content, like when they did some time ago when they were branching out and giving us series like Regular Show, Adventure Time, Young Justice, Generator Rex, Sym-Bionic Titan, Thundercats, and Lego Ninjago in a two year time-frame. Of course, CN was also delivering shoddy animated comedies at the time, which almost led me to just stop watching CN. And I'll admit, I was too harsh on the state of CN over the course of 2010/2011. However, I was very annoyed with CN's...strategy, which included live-action shows, Problem Solverz, Secret Mountain Fort Awesome, and some no-name Canadian cartoons at that time. Thankfully enough by 2012, the executives and CEO Stuart Snyder actually managed to prove that they cared about the integrity of the network. It was at the time CN was having a milestone celebration, but that was the point CN started to win me over. That wasn't even limited to the return of Toonami as an Adult Swim block, or the Cartoon Planet block, and at that point was CN improving spectacularly.
....Then came that point in time when Teen Titans Go was dominating the CN schedule. People all over the internet hated it, but when it came to the silent majority, or otherwise the target audience, the show was a success in the ratings and it was a matter of time until it started filling up slots outside of the DC Nation block. THEN by 2014, Stuart abandoned his CEO position before Christina Miller would take his place while Vishnu Athreya would be put in-charge of CN's scheduling in the same year, and now we're here with 150+ episodes of Teen Titans Go being aired in a weekly basis. To make my point across, CN's current schedule really sucks...but that's not the same for me to say that the network itself sucks right now.
We still have Adventure Time for as long as it may last, we have Steven Universe, we have We Bare Bears, we have Gumball spite getting almost as much overplay as Teen Titans Go, we're getting that new OK K.O.! cartoon, we have Adult Swim and Toonami, so it should all certainly compensate for all the problems people are having with the network. And as some of you guys may beg to point out, yes I'm also aware of CN's treatment of their other animated shows. As some examples show that CN's problems are beyond the overexposure of Teen Titans Go, CN gave up on the broadcasting rights for Pokemon and gave them to Disney XD (If that's weird, remember that in the days of Toon Disney, Jetix has been airing anime, and I think DXD broadcasting Pokemon makes more sense since DXD is becoming a bit of a network for nerds, such as myself.), and there's also the complete, ongoing radio silence for the Total Drama series, Bunnicula, Wabbit, and Be Cool, Scooby-Doo. I could only imagine that this was all for giving TTG, a.k.a. Vishnu's supreme overlord of new favorite shows, more slots on the schedule, but I'm being delusional.
Before some of you guys point out that I've gotten off-topic for a moment, I haven't forgotten about the main argument on whether or not Cartoon Network is being heavily reliant on comedic shows, and what it means for aspiring ideas for series like Infinity Train. I'll get to that in a moment, but I think I can say it for just about anyone that CN has really brought their focus towards comedic animated shows. This is included but not limited to We Bare Bears, Clarence, Mighty Magiswords, and the Powerpuff Girls reboot, which were all under the time-frame of Christina Miller currently being CEO. One series that manages to click is We Bare Bears. It has a strong comedic approach, but it also leans towards serious slice of life storylines. What I'm saying is that an animated comedy can be done right if they don't have a complete emphasis on the comedy.
And ever since Cartoon Network introduced us to Infinity Train, a lot of people were just begging to see it become a full-fledged series 4 months after it was released to YouTube. Now, let me make some things perfectly clear, I am very supportive of hopeful showrunners getting their work noticed by big companies like CN, and even I would seriously love to see Infinity Train become a full-fledged series. Here's the deal though....after all the news circulating that CN is greenlighting new original shows that aren't Infinity Train, let me point out that it takes quite a lot of time for something to be realized as a full-fledged series, and I mean it takes A LOT OF TIME. Don't believe me? Ian Jones-Quartey has been working to get his pitch for an animated show greenlit since he started animating the pilot for it in 2012. That show, in question, just so happens to be Lakewood Turbo Plaza, now known as OK K.O.! Alternatively speaking, it took 4-5 years for CN to realize full potential in Ian's pitch, and it'll probably take 4 years as well for CN to officially greenlight Infinity Train, or perhaps not depending on those who fear that CN will ignore it, and really...if we're going to expect any new information on the possibility of CN greenlighting Infinity Train, it'll be a long while before we see its fate. All animators in general work hard, but understand that Ian Jones-Quartey has also been working hard for his pitch and we could've pressured CN into greenlighting OK K.O.! some time ago in a similar vein to Infinity Train (IJQ is also a prominent man in animation, having previously worked on The Venture Bros and Adventure Time, as well as working on Steven Universe. He also debunked the myth that you have to be a CalArts graduate to succeed in animation.), but we didn't.
Anyways, the only reasons for me to watch Cartoon Network at the moment is for Steven Universe, We Bare Bears, Toonami, and soon enough, OK K.O.! The network is not in a pleasant state at the moment, but I'm not saying that I feel that Cartoon Network sucks at the moment. My point is that I think we should all calm down right now about the state of the network (The reactions for the Ben 10 reboot would've also otherwise prompted for me to make this rant, as the disgruntled 2.1 rating on IMDB should be a given.) The first half of 2017 is going to be very stationery for CN, but I believe CN can do better than what people say that they aren't. Case in point, all big TV animation companies have made bad decisions. Furthermore, I don't think that means it's not worth the risk of working for Nick, Disney XD, Disney Channel, Adult Swim, etc., and just bail to Netflix for making an animated series. I mean, if you're an aspiring animated series showrunner and you want to work for Netflix, I'm perfectly fine with that, but you know, I would honestly rather take the "risk" of working for either one of these big name television animation companies before I give Netflix a chance. The animation industry itself is filled with risks. Heck, I've been brainstorming my idea for an animated series since 2011 and I still feel that my story hasn't come full circle, so I'll be willing to wait 10+ years for my idea to become a full-fledged series. So yeah, these all represent my thoughts on Cartoon Network as of now, and what I can say really is that the current quality of CN is the least of my worries, but I do have my doubts. Also, if you want Cartoon Network to be fixed, there's no need to complain and just hope it gets better. If you desire to, try and see if you could ever get accepted for a job at Cartoon Network and express your ideas of improving the network, that is my idea.
tl;dr version: I don't think CN is at its worst at this point. I also think some people need to chill out about Cartoon Network for a moment. I have my doubts towards CN too, but I don't think that also indicates that the network is not worth working for, same as any other TV companies. While CN also has a large emphasis on comedy and is still heavily reliant on Teen Titans Go, the Unikitty spin-off should be the least of anyone's worries.
So yeah, feel free to tell me what you think about my argument. Did I make some unclear points? Is there anything you disagree with? Do I have any good ideas, bad ideas? Tell me anything, and I'll be willing to read any responses that I can get.
Hey you! Have you read Underwater Survivor SBC? Have you heard of it? If there's any reason why I'm plugging my own spin-off here, it's because I have a special request. The final episode is coming up pretty soon, and the final two have been revealed, and UWS needs your vote for one of the two finalists:
Omair & SG10.
Who do you think should win in this season/series finale of UWS? Starting today until September 5th, you will have the chance to PM me your vote for either Omair/E.V.I.L. or SG10. So, what are you waiting for? Send me your vote before the deadline. The votes I receive will determine who wins!