Posts Tagged ‘CN Monday’

Tony here. Time for the end-of-the-week Sunday Wrap-Up. It’s here that I look back at the week in animation and say what I thought worked, what I thought failed, and what I thought was the best-of-the-best of week. (I do apologize for not having practically any posts at all this week, but I’ve been busy partaking in a South Park marathon and haven’t really had the time.) Some spoilers below. Let’s get started.

On CN Monday, we had new episodes of:

  • The Amazing World of Gumball — Not this show’s very best episode, as it had its fair share of faults, but lots of jokes were especially inspired and the whole thing was typically goofy and hilarious. Darwin and Gumball seemed a tad too mean-spirited, but that could easily be justified by factoring in their naivete. 9.2/10 (Best of the night)
  • MAD — This episode felt really short, and unfortunately the few sketches that were shown almost all fell short. The opening “Force Code” sketch completely lost me, as I have not seen Source Code and nothing was done in the parody to make it accessible to those who had not. The ending “Flammable” sketch, a surprising musical skit parodying Katy Perry’s “Fireworks”, and the “GleeCR” faux commercial were the only redeeming graces, as everything else was more miss-than-hit. 7.7/10
  • The Problem Solverz — The show’s in-all-likelihood series finale was just as bad as every episode before it. This finale was surprisingly meta and addressed the hatred beamed at it by using it as a plot device. This was a shock and something I can actually totally admire. But the show ended with all of its problems in tact–horrible animation, ugly designs and colors, dull storytelling, hallow surrealism, annoying characters–and I never laughed once this entire episode. I’m glad this show is over. 4.9/10.

On CN Tuesday, we had new episodes of:

  • Scooby Doo! Mystery Incorporated — I…did not see this episode. I never watched this show before I started this blog, so I can never remember when it’s on. Still, um, I heard it was a pretty good episode. No score available.
  • The Looney Tunes Show — Offers the first portrayals of this show’s versions of Taz, Granny, Tweety, and Sylvester. Taz was alright, as was the others, though I find it sort of weird that Granny is reverted to a completely stereotypical deaf old women as opposed to a kindly little old lady. The jokes mostly worked, the best of which obviously fell to Daffy. Not the show at the top of its game, but still a pretty damn entertaining episode as the show’s writing starts to finally finds a solid foundation. 9.3/10.

On Comedy Central Thursdays, we had two new episodes of:

  • Futurama — Good news everyone! Futurama is back after a several-month-long break, with TWO new episodes. The first, “Neutopia”, was probably the weakest. The plot sort of felt like a series of events that never got detailed enough as opposed to a complete story, and the gender battle scenario felt a bit retreated. Despite this, there was a great cluster of jokes that are typical of a Futurama episode, and from that standpoint, it was able to deliver. Then the second, “Benderama”, was the better of the two, as the story was better delivered, with just the same amount of laughs to be found. Plus, there’s always good to be found in an episode that focuses on Bender. First one: 9.0/10. Second one: 9.4/10.

On Disney Channel Friday, we had a new episode of:

  • Phineas and Ferb — Both of these episodes were just so…meh.  The first, ” Bad Hair Day”, did something I like–that being, mixing things up. It was a change of pace that didn’t follow the typical format and had a pretty good sense of fun. But it was just unfunny. Typically the show offers a big bundle of laughs, but here, even Doofenshmirtz’s plot didn’t bring anything notably funny to the table, and I only surmounted a few chuckles through the whole thing. The ending musical number even wasn’t really as funny as it should have been. The second, “Meatloaf Surprise”, just felt off and weird. Once again, I barely laughed at all, as none of the jokes worked. Davy Jones of The Monkees made a cameo, but even this was wasted on a pretty bland song with no true joke to it. Also Jamie Oliver was there for some reason. Overall, these were surprisingly bland and pretty bad episodes. I guess every show needs its rotten batch. First one: 6.2/10. Second one: 5.9/10.

On The Hub Saturday, we had a new episode of:

  • Dan Vs. — A great, fun episode with a lot of good jokes packed in. Dan’s vendetta towards the magician allowed for some really good skeptic scenes with him and plenty of magic-based gags. Elise got some surprising development here, as we see she has had a fear of magicians since she was eight-years-old; it was a nice change of pace and for once Elise managed to remain as funny as everyone else. All the jokes worked, and Dan’s character seems to just get better and better with each episode. 9.5/10.

So overall, the Best of the Week were:

  1. Dan Vs. — “The Magician”
  2. Futurama — “Benderama”
  3. The Looney Tunes Show — “Devil Dog”
  4. The Amazing World of Gumball — “The Laziest”
  5. Futurama — “Neutopia”

That’s it for me. A pretty hit-of-miss week for shows, with lots of great installments but also a lot of disappointment. Also, I’ll try and have more articles this week to make up for the lack of them last time. See you next week.

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Tony here. Time for your weekly Recap of Cartoon Network’s Monday Night Line-up on the date 06/20/2011. This week the line-up consists of new episodes of The Amazing World of Gumball, MAD, and The Problem Solverz. (Both Adventure Time and Regular Show were repeats this week, so that’s why this recap will feel a tad empty). Some spoilers below. Let’s get started.

First on The Amazing World of Gumball: in “The Laziest”, the boys’ mom goes out, resulting in Richard deciding to be lazier than usual. Gumball and Darwin decide to compete with their dad over who is laziest. Good episode, though it was rather strange seeing Gumball and Darwin being rather mean-spirited. I can see, though, that this was perhaps just their naivete and impressionability leading to their cruel actions towards Lazy Larry. Nonetheless, this episode was funny and the scenes with Lazy Larry–while rather mean-spirited–were pretty entertaining; though since Gumball and Darwin just disregard it, it made it seem rather pointless. But I know, that’s the joke. Not this show’s very best episode, as it had its fair share of faults, but lots of jokes were especially inspired and the whole thing was typically goofy and hilarious. I give this episode a 9.2/10.

Then on MAD: in “Force Code/Flammable”, we had parodies of Star Wars, Source Code, and Katy Perry. This episode was, eh, alright. The opening sketch simply lost me–mostly because I have not seen Source Code so I just totally did not get any of the jokes. Which is also the fault of the writers, because a proper satire should be accessible to those who are not even familiar with the subject matter as well. This episode felt really short as well, and the few sketches that were shown were simply passable. “Flammable” was interesting because it was a song parody, which this show has never done before, and which I totally loved. Katy Perry’s “Firework” is so terrible it needs a parody, and the puppets melting from Perry’s boob sparks was hilarious. The GleeVR was my personal favorite, because 1) any riff on Glee is good in my book, 2) they referenced the Strutting Leo meme which was surprising and also amazing, and 3) they worked in a small spoof of Supernatural. This episode was funny, but felt short and a lot of it was more miss than hit. I give it a 7.9/10.

Finally, on The Problem Solverz: in “Zoo Cops”, the Problem Solverz are feeling that their popularity is decreasing because they have had no good cases and are derided for such. Things change when an insane tagger named Dork Face plots an evil dimensional based scheme against the town. This was the season finale, and very well likely the series finale, so…yeah. Let me just open by saying that after all this has been said and done, this show was fucking horrible. Its animation is too ugly and bright despite being stylistic and purposeful; the voice actors are loud and annoying despite several of them being talented people (John  DiMaggio, Grey DeLisle, Chris Parnell, George Tekai, and Mark Hamil have all lent their voices and have been wasted); the show’s surrealism is hallow and pretentious and out-of-date, like something from Newgrounds made in 5 minutes by some baked college kid; the story and plot is dull and lifeless and is used solely as a support beam for the characters to be loud and random. Now as for this episode itself? Astonishingly meta. It seems this show is aware that is is absolutely despised by 98% of everybody who has ever watched it, and it has seemingly embraced it and used it as subject matter for its episode. I commend it for that, honestly, but besides that, nothing stood out. The tagger character was alright, and surprisingly the sequence inside the “flat dimension” was well done, but I didn’t laugh once and every joke was too predictable and retreaded. Overall, despite its self-aware nature, the season (and quite obviously series) finale was about as bad as every episode before it. I give it a 4.9/10.

Overall I give this week’s CN Monday a 7.8/10. Be sure to check the line-up next week, starting at 7:30p.m. on Cartoon Network. And be sure to read more of Toons with Tony with new posts daily.

Tony here. Time for your weekly Recap of Cartoon Network’s Monday Night Line-up on the date 06/13/2011. This week the line-up consists of new episodes of The Amazing World of Gumball, Regular Show, MAD, and The Problem Solverz. Note that this blog defines “Recap” as a short summary of the episode and a brief review/opinion of it, as opposed to the “Bit-By-Bit” recapping style of sites like TelevisionWithoutPity.com. Some spoilers below. Let’s get started.

First up on The Amazing World of Gumball: In “The Painting”, the school’s principal sees a drawing Anais did, which demonstrates the insanely chaotic and dysfunctional nature of her family. The principal decides to try and sort all of them out–telling Richard to get a job, Nicole to become a stay-at-home mom, and Gumball and Darwin to take a course on taming their rambunctiousness. Another hilarious episode; each storyline was given equal screen-time and all managed to be amazing. I’ve heard a lot of complaints about how unoriginal Richard’s dumb dad personality is, but I don’t care–he’s personally my favorite character on the show, because (as is demonstrated in this episode) practically everything he does is hysterical and well-timed. Gumball and Darwin’s plot featured a new character, Mr. Smalls, a new age teacher whose methods were side-splitting, and Nicole’s simple scenes had her being extremely bored being able to do nothing but clean. The jokes worked, these characters are funny–Gumball is just fucking amazing. I give it an A+.

Then on Regular Show: In “More Smarter”, Rigby is mocked for not having a high school diploma. He tries but fails attending an actual high school, and finds an online test impossible, so he orders a brain enhancing juice which makes him “more smarter”. This episode was on the ball the whole time. Rigby being stupid–while some of the jokes were a tad on the nose–was played out nice and his dumb lines were funny. The irregular ending was as big and weird as I like it, with the boys taking so much of the brain juice that they think at a higher level then everybody and view the world as more-or-less the grid from Tron. Two favorite moments: Benson coming into the kitchen and asking the guys a real life stereotypical math word problem to Rigby’s utter bemusement, and the cleverly quick way the show brushed off Rigby’s attempt at re-attending high school which could have been an episode all its own. I give it an A.

Next on MAD: In “Ribbitless/The Clawfice”, the show took on Limitless, The Office, The Muppets, and X-Men, and packed a solid punch. In fact, most of the sketches (excluding the titular two) did not actually directly parody anything, and it allowed for more diversity in the comedy. That being said, the parodies themselves were a bit of a stretch (I actually had no clue what they’d be parodying until I saw the episode despite seeing the titles beforehand) but once that subsided they both offered their laughs. “Ribbitless” was hilarious, with lots of funny gags with the Muppets–there was even some surprise continuity with a callback to a bit in “Clifforfield”– though “The Clawfice” didn’t do much for me despite my love of both The Office and X-Men. I just felt like the satire itself just wasn’t good enough; like they hadn’t really done much research on the show, so the whole thing just fell apart for me. The best sketch was “Seattle: Los Angeles”, which was just absurd, ridiculous, hilarious, and amazing. One my favorite MAD sketches so far, though the episode overall was just solid. I give it a B+.

Finally, on The Problem Solverz: In “Breakfast Wars”, a child runs out of cereal, and The Problem Solverz mission to solve the problem leads to them going on a wild chase as they get embroiled in the schemes of the evil cereal mascot Professor Sugar Fish. I’m not entirely sure how I came to get the feelings I did about this episode–maybe I’m just totally adjusted to the horrific colors and annoying voices and in-your-face attitude of this show and just don’t care anymore; maybe it was the fact that this whole episode acted as an homage to insane Japanese culture with Prof. Sugar Fish’s cereal commercials and I absolutely adore everything about Japan; maybe it was that the surrealism was actually done sort of right for once. But for whatever reason, this episode of The Problem Solverz was borderline decent, and I….did not hate it. And once again, I’m not sure why, but for whatever reason, I laughed more at the absurdity, and I was not utterly repulsed. Again, it might be because I’m adjusted, or because I’m bias for Japanese culture, but I still could not find much to hate about this episode. Oh sure, the colors were brighter and fiercer then ever and the plot was more chaotic, random, and dumber, which are the elements this show increases on weekly. I hate all of the characters (except for Tux Dog, but even he was in the episode and had a pretty funny scene) and I hate the animation. But as this season comes to a close (season finale’s next week) I’ve finally found at least one episode of this horrible show that can actually be called “decent”. I give it a C-.

Overall I give this week’s CN Monday a B+. Be sure to check the line-up next week, starting at 7:30p.m. on Cartoon Network. And be sure to read more of Toons with Tony with new posts daily.

Tony here. Time for the end-of-the-week Sunday Wrap-Up. It’s here that I look back at the week in animation and say what I thought worked, what I thought failed, and what I thought was the best-of-the-best of week. (Note that there was no new Dan Vs. episode this week, so this might feel a bit lopsided, but that’s out of my control unfortunately. Fucking The Hub…) Minor spoilers below. Let’s get started.

On CN Monday, we had new episodes of:

  • The Amazing World of Gumball — Similar to “The Dress”, this episode managed to nail the perfect level of weirdness, inappropriateness, and genuine portrayals of children. Not to mention it was hysterical. Definitely up there with the best episodes of the show so far, and the ending was so messed up it had me in hysterics. CN is now recycling episodes, so there’s only gonna be one segment a week in stead of two, which sucks. Best episode of the night. I give it an A+.
  • Regular Show — Not a particularly bad episode, but not an excellent one either. Sort of in the middle, with perfectly fine and funny jokes and a typically great “irregular” twist ending. It didn’t do much for me, however, so I wouldn’t really call it anything special for this show, but it was funny and entertaining nonetheless. I give it an A-.
  • MAD — Underwhelming. The opening sketch was funny, but it seemed to be stretching to make jokes worked, though the “Yu-Gi-Bear” gag was amusing. The ending sketch (yet ANOTHER Twilight parody) failed for two reasons: 1) it was overall unfunny and 2) MAD has been doing Twilight sketches practically every episode and they’re just straight up running out of fucking material. Some things worked but this show needs to pick it up. I give it a B.
  • The Problem Solverz — This show is becoming depressing. You can see as it tries and tries to improve its flaws, but it just fails so miserably. It creates a followable plot but in doing so it relies on cliches and stereotypes. The fangirl bit has been done so many times before and this show does nothing knew with it. Nothing worked, sans a single funny line, and I just want this show to not be renewed for a second season simply because it honestly needs to be taken out of its misery. I give it an F-.

Then on CN Tuesday we had new episodes of:

  • Scooby Doo! Mystery Incorporated — Fine episode but with a predictable reveal. Nonetheless, it was a fun ride with plenty of funny gags. Vincent Van Ghoul was an entertaining revival of his character, this time being voiced by Maurice LaMarche doing a pitch-perfect Vincent Price impression. The recurring gag with Daphne being super hungry was pretty funny as well. I give it a B+.
  • The Looney Tunes Show — Looks like this show has finally gotten into its groove. It knows what works, it knows what doesn’t, and it knows just who to give all the best lines to–its increasingly amazing incarnation of Daffy. The Batman gag was just one of many hysterical gags this installment had to offer. The storyline (your typical “high school reunion standards” plot) worked because it was written around the characters and not vice versa. The Merrie Melodies short was the best MM so far (though its title–“Cock of the Walk”–is…unfortunate), while the Wile E. Coyote gag was…meh. Still the Best of the Night. I give it an A.

On Comedy Central Wednesdays, we had a new episode of:

  • South Park — An episode that felt honestly important; surprisingly dark, thought-provoking, and self-reflective. Comprised mostly of (actually funny) shit jokes used to represent the poor state of modern popular music and mock cynical hipsters who despise everything, the episode also acted as a commentary on Trey and Matt’s status on the show. The ending–which must be seen as it is is truly effective–could have all been a throw-off thing to get a message across or maybe just a jokingly-serious gag, but this felt important, and was one of South Park‘s finest half hours. I give it an A+.

So overall, the Best of the Week were:

  1. South Park — “You’re Getting Old”
  2. The Amazing World of Gumball — “The Pressure”
  3. The Looney Tunes Show — “Reunion”
  4. Regular Show — “A Bunch of Baby Ducks”
  5. Scooby Doo! Mystery Incorporated — “Nightfright”

That’s it for me. Once again, yeah, this felt empty with no Dan Vs. this week, but hopefully everything will be back on par next week. See you next time.

Tony here. Time for your weekly Recap of Cartoon Network’s Monday Night Line-up on the date 05/23/2011. This week the line-up consists of new episodes of  The Amazing World of Gumball, Regular Show, MAD, and The Problem Solverz. Note that this blog defines “Recap” as a short summary of the episode and a brief review/opinion of it, as opposed to the “Bit-By-Bit” recapping style of sites like TelevisionWithoutPity.com. SPOILERS below. Let’s get started.

First on The Amazing World of Gumball: In “The Pressure”, Darwin feels pressured to kiss a girl after incidentally being caught up in a relationship with one of them. Like with “The Dress”, this episode nails Gumball’s absolutely amazing mixture of genuine child characters with absolutely fucked up plots and surrealism. I could not stop laughing this episode, and was absolutely astonished when the series flat out has Darwin and Gumball kiss (albeit they cut away). The things this show is able to get away with, and the way it’s able to handle it so unflinchingly and so well is really a feat all alone. This show is hilarious, and–picking itself up from last week’s slightly below-average installments–stole the night. Unfortunately, they’re rationing episodes now, so they only aired one, which left a rather off half an hour gap in the CN Monday block, but that’s another discussion really. I give it an A+.

Then on Regular Show: In “A Bunch of Baby Ducks”, Mordecai and Rigby find a bunch of baby ducks in a fountain and (not sending them to the moon) try and figure out what to do with them. Now while not as good as last week’s episode, this was still a good episode. The jokes worked, the ducks were entertaining, and the big typical “irregular ending” was insane and hysterical, as always. A sizable installment which I have no complaints about, but no exaggerated praise or more elaborated comments about. Bottom line–a good episode. I give it an A-.

Next on MAD: In “ArThor/The Big Fang Theory”, we have sketches parodying Arthur, Thor, Yu-Gi-Oh, Yogi Bear, and more. This episode was a tad underwhelming. The opening sketch was funny, though the inclusion of Rango was random. While they ended up fitting him into the plot with a joke, he seemed out of place, like they had nothing to do with him until that last gag. “Yu-Gi-Bear” was a clever sketch that I enjoyed, as was “Alvin and the Monks”, the two of which seemed to be the saving graces for this episode. The closing sketch, “The Big Fang Theory”, was a mash-up of The Big Bang Theory and–you guessed it–Twilight. Look, MAD: I know your job is to lampoon popular media. And I know Twilight offers loads of possible jokes and satirical material. But calm the fuck down. They’ve done a Twilight bit practically every week and frankly it’s becoming tiresome and–as in this week’s parody–is downright unfunny at times. Pick it up, MAD, you can do better than this. I give it a B.

Finally on The Problem Solverz: In “Magic Clock”, a Problem Solverz fangirl (lol, like those exist) begins following the team around during their latest mission to retrieve a stolen magical clock, though she is too obsessive–particularly in her romantic fascination with Roba. Okay, time to go all long-winded here. Remember last week when I said that a small positive element in last week’s episode was that the plot was actually followable? Well, here’s the problem–“Magic Clock”‘s plot is indeed very easily followable, but that’s because it is basic, rudimentary, and rooted in stereotypes and archetypes. Once again this show just cannot solve its fucking problems without creating new ones in the process. This was predictable and–as always–dumb throughout. The fangirl was the most basic form of obsessed fangirl and creepy stalker, and while her line “Your shadow is so attractive, Roba” is a funny line, that’s it. A few funny lines here and there is not enough to support this crumbling show. This show admittedly makes me sad. I am embarrassed for this show, because I watch it every week and I see as it tries to improve its problems, but it’s just failing so miserably. It fixes a fault by making it something worse, or it adds in something else to try and cancel out the negative elements without actually taking out the negative elements. I want this show not to get renewed for a second season–not because I hate it, which I do, but because I simply think it needs to be taken out of its misery. I give it an F-.

Overall I give this week’s CN Monday line-up an A-. Be sure to check the line-up next week, starting at 7:30p.m. on Cartoon Network. And be sure to read more of Toons with Tony with new posts daily.

Tony here. Time for your weekly Recap of Cartoon Network’s Monday Night Line-up on the date 05/23/2011. This week the line-up consists of new episodes of  The Amazing World of Gumball, Regular Show, MAD, and The Problem Solverz. Note that this blog defines “Recap” as a short summary of the episode and a brief review/opinion of it, as opposed to the “Bit-By-Bit” recapping style of sites like TelevisionWithoutPity.com. Minor spoilers below. Let’s get started.

First on The Amazing World of Gumball: In “The Quest”, Anais’ doll is stole on the bus and taken by Tina the Dinosaur, so Gumball and Darwin go to Tina’s house to try and retrieve it. Note that I actually sort of missed a few brief parts due to not paying attention, but overall this was sort of a weaker episode. I still love these characters and I enjoy the sincerity of them–Gumball and Darwin are not mean-spirited; they are genuinely nice, well-meaning people, and that’s what this show is. Well-meaning. And rather hilarious. Not as funny as last week’s, but still a success. I give it a B+. On “The Spoon”, Gumball and Darwin are caught up in a robbery at a gas station, where they are tricked into thinking the robber is a good guy trying to gather money and items for a charity for bald people. This episode was hysterical, about on par with last week’s. Gumball’s dad as surprisingly grown on me–despite being basically a one-note bumbling dad archetype, he’s very amusing and the show knows what to do with him to get a very well-deserved laugh. Gumball’s and Darwin’s genuine childish nature is also something that I appreciate in this show; these feel like real children, and their honest obliviousness and good intentions make them both likable and hilarious. Also of note: the sausage with a mustache? Absolutely amazing. I give it an A.

Then on Regular Show: In “The Night Owl”, Mordecai, Rigby, Muscle Man, and High Five Ghost compete in a radio contest in order to win a car they all agree to share. But the evil nature of the radio host, The Night Owl, begins coming into play and things go a bit, well, irregular (lol horrible puns). Now this is more like it. I admit to being rather disappointed by the last two weeks episodes of RS; they were good, but they just didn’t do it for me. “The Night Owl”, however, was just perfect. Every joke nailed it, and the whole thing was fun, entertaining, and actually quite exciting. It also did what I think the last two episodes did not due–it led with something regular and dissolved into something completely off-the-wall, unpredictable, and insane. That’s the Regular Show way, and it’s what makes the show so fun and entertaining. I give it an A+.

Next on MAD: In “TwiSchool Musical/Avenger Time”, we have sketches parodying Sonic the Hedgehog, High School Musical, and Disney Channel actress Demi Lovato. This was also a major improvement over last week’s episode. While the filler sketches were fine themselves (especially “X For Demi’s”, a parody of For Dummies books and Demi Lovato), the two leading and closing sketches were absolutely spectacular. MAD has done what must be a dozen Twilight parodies already, but this one was definitely their best. The sight gags worked well and the satire itself was amusing. “Avenger Time”, which combined The Avengers with Adventure Time, really worked for me, and for once MAD‘s animation was actually impressive. It was clever and actually very funny. Definitely a great installment. I give it an A.

Finally, on The Problem Solverz: in “Fauxboro”, the guys stumble onto a problem themselves when they notice everyone in town has become mindless robots who don’t wear pants. I have more to say about this episode than I do most TPSz episodes. First off the bat, this was, for the most part, a slight improvement over the rest of the series. This was more insane, loud, and hyper than any episode before it, and this, well, makes it more annoying, but it also means with so much things going on, certain things are bound to be funny. Alfe actually managed to have some actually funny lines in the beginning. And another I thing I must note is that this episode’s plot was actual followable. The core problem of this show, past the bland characters or in-your-face attitude, is the sheer dullness of the plot. The show is impossible to follow because it is so isolating to the audience that it results in disinterest. But this episode’s plot was actually comprehensible, which I give it credit for. Still, that was about it. Plot was dumb and random nonetheless, and the whole thing seemed louder and more uncontrollable. Despite the surprising improvements, this episode was still a piece of Alfe. I give it a D+.

Overall I give this week’s CN Monday line-up an A. Be sure to check the line-up next week, starting at 7:30p.m. on Cartoon Network. And be sure to read more of Toons with Tony with new posts daily.