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Robot Chicken : Season 1


  02:40:42 pm, by Nimble   , 386 words  
Categories: Reviews, Television

Robot Chicken : Season 1

Link: http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B000E0OE3K?ie=UTF8&tag=thecerealkill-20&linkCode=as2&camp=15121&creative=330641&creativeASIN=B000E0OE3K

Robot Chicken is one further step in the return of animation to the world of adults. Well, in this case, not drawn animation. Stop-motion animation. Isn't stop-motion animation expensive? Well, yeah, if you make all your models from scratch and stuff. What if you've got a doll and action figure collection somewhere? That would make it cheap!

The opening sequence really sets the tone for the show. Dead chicken, brought back to cyborg life to be treated to an MST3K-ish TV-watching experience.

The show is part action figures, part claymation, part sticking paper mouths on the action figures. There are short, often disturbing clips as the show "flips past channels" (though seeing as the robot chicken is watching sixty screens at once, why would there be channel-flipping static?), interspersed with longer parody shows and skits, like superheroes stuck together on a reality TV show, or the tooth fairy visiting and interfering with domestic violence, or the Transformers teaching you about prostate cancer.

There are a lot of references on the show, everything from Logan's Run to Big Brother to the Matrix to Debbie Does Dallas to You Can't Do That On Television. Unlike Mystery Science Theater 3000, though, I get the vast majority of the references in this show.

Many of the voices are impressive. Some are done by the actual actors or celebrities themselves, like Ryan Seacrest in Zombie Idol and his interpersed "Seacrest... out!" clips, or much of the cast of That 70's Show in an eerily well-done parody. Other voices aren't... or are uncredited, but are often good.

It's a smartly-written show in many spots, though there are plenty of jokes that miss the mark, go on too long, or are truly guilty chuckles. Some of the bits add one more twist than you would expect, which is most gratifying.

There's a lot of action figure blood spatter, vomit and adult themes. If you can stomach that, like parodies, and can stand some occasionally juvenline humour, this is a great little series to have around, in particular when television is grating on you.

The last show in the first season shows a full expectation of being cancelled. I'm gratified that there's actually a second season out there, though we don't get Adult Swim titles directly. Some good guilty guffaws to look forward to.

1 comment

Comment from: Adam [Member]  

At about 12 minutes an episode, it certainly doesn’t overstay its welcome.

Personal favourites so far are probably Skeletor’s carpool, and the Carebears’ ethnic cleansing. I’m rather fond of the Punishment Ponies ™ too.

The show requires an extremely warped sense of humour which is probably why I like it.

11/14/06 @ 13:37