Tuesday, April 11, 2006

"Evil comes in many forms, whether it be a man-eating cow or Joseph Stalin."

Ah, "The Tick." Not the pointless live-action version with Patrick Warburton, but the animated version with Townsend Coleman as the voice of the big, strong lummox who thinks he's a superhero because he dresses up in a blue suit to fight crime. And whose battle cry is "SPOOOON!"

Unlike most Saturday morning cartoons based on comic books, this one had the full participation of the creator, Ben Edlund, and it was more character-based, with more of a dry sense of humour, than the completely nutty superhero-parody cartoons that followed a couple of years later ("Freakazoid," "Earthworm Jim"). It only lasted 36 episodes, though: while superhero parodies like "The Tick" gained a big cult following among adults and college kids, who enjoyed the sendup of comic-book clich├ęs, they may have been too meta-humourous for kids, who tend to prefer something that is either pure comedy or pure adventure. And this was the period when advertisers were pulling their ads from "kiddie" shows that had any appeal beyond a kiddie audience, so the adult cult following hurt, rather than helped, shows like "The Tick."

It was a good show and hopefully the DVD set will do right by it; just identifying who all the various supporting characters are supposed to be parodies of ("Die Fledermaus," "American Maid," "Sea Urchin") is enough reason to watch.


Daniel said...

I have mustache fever already!

Anonymous said...

Yeah I can't wait either, however I wouldn't hold my breath expecting Edlund to be involved in any extras. I asked one of the writers of the show and still good friend of Mr. Edlund (Jackson Publick of the awesome Venture Bros. on Adult Swim)on his livejournal if Ben or he would be involved in the production and he said it was pretty certain they wouldn't be.