8 Great Cartoons You ARENT Watching! (Part 2) – CWAR!
I’m black, I’m back, and I’ve got four more animated series for you to sink your eyeholes into! Let’s forgo the pleasantries and get right to the point.
Adult Swim attempted to create a Funny or Die style web network called Super Deluxe back in 2007. But by the end of 2008 Super Deluxe was no longer in existence. One of the few hits from Super Deluxe was Brad Neely’s BabyCakes, and The Professor Bros. He envisioned that his two shorts existed in the same universe and thus the concept of China, IL was born. Taking place at the “Worst College In America” China, Il focuses on the faculty and staff of the college who struggle to actually teach anything at all.
Upon a glance China, IL looks poorly produced. Line weight is a foreign concept, and character designs are minimal at best. However underneath the surface this allows for truly vivid animation to be produced. Character animation is a top priority on China, IL. With a cast including such over the top personalities like Hulk Hogan, Jason Alexander and Jeffrey Tambor, it’s a treat to see that no expense has been taken to translate the outstanding vocal performances onto the screen. And don’t expect subtle storytelling as well, this is a show for those of us who are into darker, more gruesome humor. The first season consists of 10 eleven minutes episodes, and season 2 allowed for the show to expand to 22 minutes. A third season is currently in production. China, IL can be found on Adult Swim and AdultSwim.com
Cartoons are often used as an escape for children. A form of entertainment to capture the minds of adolescence and keep their attention. It’s an easy formula, and it’s been working for decades. But rarely do any shows actually capture the essence of childlike realistic childlike wonder and imagination. It takes a certain kind of program to deliver that kind of storytelling and allow it to entertain all ages. Does Clarence reach that bar? No, not really. It surpasses it.
Clarence is the brainchild of Skyler Page, a CalArts graduate that developed the idea for the show while in college. Due to unfortunate circumstances Page is no longer with Cartoon Network, but Clarence still goes on. Clarence’s storytelling & comedic style harkens back to 1990s animated series like Doug, Hey Arnold, and Recess. It takes a more realistic tone with it’s comedy which allows people watching it to identify with the material presented before them. The show joins the ranks of The Legend Of Korra & Adventure Time, as it features LGBT characters. Never explicitly given the LGBT label, it is implied that these people do exist in this universe like everyone else. Which feels just as natural as our LGBT brothers and sisters existing in our own world. Clarence airs on Cartoon Network and can also be seen on CartoonNetwork.com
Animated sitcoms are like leaves on a tree, there’s a lot of them. They come in every year, and some last a very long time, while some are simply here for a season. But every now and again something comes along that strikes a unique chord that allows it to forge it’s own place amongst the greats. This is Regular Show, quite possibly one of the best animated sitcoms on television right now. The brainchild of creator J. G. Quintel, Regular Show is centers around two 20-something college dropouts and their co-workers that share a living space at the park they maintain. Sounds like an NBC comedy, except for the fact that those college dropouts are Mordecai, a blue jay, and Rigby, a racoon. Their boss, Benson, is a living gumball machine. Even their co-workers are just as odd; an immortal Yeti, a lollipop man, a ghost, and a stubby obese green skinned human. Outside of what they are, Regular Show is a normal, hilarious, situational comedy show.
Quintel’s humor is deeply based in British television and retro pop culture. If Gravity Falls honors the memories of Alex Hirsh’s childhood adventures, then Regular Show is the love letter to Quintel’s formative years. From adolescence to university, he pays homage to everything that inspired him. A must see episode for anyone born after the 1970s, is ‘The Format Wars’ and it’s just as entertaining sequel episode ‘The Format Wars II.’ It’s guaranteed to tug at your memories of… well I won’t spoil it for you. Regular Show is almost as popular as it’s peer Adventure Time however it just hasn’t reached that level of super stardom that Pendelton Ward’s creation has. Quintel even developed the show to sound like a typical sitcom in order to pull in audiences of all ages. Yes, wild & magical things happen in the Regular Show universe, but everything has a rhyme and a realistic reason for why is occurs. You can find Regular Show on Cartoon Network or on CartoonNetwork.com
I’d say I saved the best for last. So I will. I saved the best for last. In fact I’d go as far to say that Lucas Bros. Moving Co. is the definitive FanBros cartoon. Brought to life by twin comedians Kenny and Keith Lucas, this is a once in a generation show that captures the essence of black american pop culture and delivers it in a way that makes it accessible to anyone who watches it. Black, American, or otherwise.
On the surface level, Lucas Bros. Moving Co. is a buddy stoner comedy show. The brothers own and operate a moving company out of their truck, smoke weed to the high heavens, and get into surreal hijinks on and off the job. A day for the brothers might start with a simple moving job that leads to a world wide catastrophe that can only be solved by an r&b singer that probably hasn’t been culturally relevant since 1992. In a world where the erasure of black accomplishments is bigger than ever, Lucas Bros. Moving Co. has no problem inserting black american culture into their program. Inebriated or not, it’ll still give you a laugh. If there’s one series you chose to watch from this list please make it Lucas Bros. Moving Co, I promise you won’t be disappointed. You can find The Lucas Bros. Moving Co. on the ADHD block on FXX.
And thus concludes our first Cartoons With A Robot piece. 8 great animated series you aren’t watching. By the end of this hopefully you’ll have something DVR’ed to tune into later today. Think this list sucks? Have I changed your life by introducing you to 8 new blessings? Let me know in the comments below!