Shounen Step-By-Step: Zoids (Chaotics Century) Episode 1

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Plot: Van is young boy who wants nothing more than a Zoid of his own to pilot, just like his late father. After being chased down by some crooked Zoid pilots, a Guysak pilot in particular named Bull, Van becomes trapped in some old war ruins. He finds a secret passage that leads him to two pods, and he accidentally opens one of them, revealing a baby raptor-like Zoid that he names Zeek. Bull returns to finish him off, and Zeek tries to protect him to no avail. Zeek takes Van and flies them out of the ruins, leading them to an old ruined Shield Liger. Zeek amazingly fuses with the Shield Liger, bringing it back to full form and Van manages to scare off the enemy. After the battle concludes, Zeek leads them back to the ruins where he prompts Van to open the second pod. Thinking it’s another Zoid, Van excitedly agrees only to find that the pod contains a strange girl.

Breakdown: Zoids was a show that I definitely followed when I was younger. Here’s the thing though, outside of the bare basics, I remember nothing of the story. I remember Zoids, I remember fighting, I remember Van, Fiona and Zeek, that’s about it. I don’t know if that says something about the quality of the show. Hopefully it’s just my crappy-ass memory.

As for this first episode, it’s pretty good. Not great, but pretty good. They establish basically what Zoids are without going into expositiony detail. They introduce Van quite well, and he’s a really likable character so far. You click with him near the end when you see how excited he is to win his first Zoid battle. His relationship with Zeek also starts out pretty strong.

The enemies…..are….the biggest weak point of the episode. The other two, who pilot Command Wolves, are just blah, which is not at all helped by their completely bored voice acting. Bull, however, is just nearing ridiculously evil. He whines about not getting one of the cool Command Wolves from whoever his bosses are, so he takes command of a stray Guysak, a scorpion-like Zoid, and tries to prove its worth by killing Van….Yeah I’m sure you’ll look so impressive killing a small boy with a 20 ton battle robot. He justifies it by saying he witnessed something or other, but it’s pretty flimsy.

The other weak spot of this episode would probably be the scene with Van’s sister at their father’s grave. It’s just a big fat exposition dump.

The art is usually pretty good, and even the CGI Zoids look pretty nice and don’t clash too much with the traditional animation. However, there are a bunch of scenes with silly and odd facial expressions. Nearly every shot of Bull is a screenshot for the books, and even Van gets some laughable faces.

The music is pretty good, and the ED has stuck with me throughout the years. Something interesting about this series is that, unlike a crap ton of English dubbed shows, this one keeps the next episode previews, which I greatly appreciate even if they have a habit of spoiling episodes every now and then.

The voice acting, English, is a mixed bag so far. Van’s VA is pretty good and Bull’s is alright, but the silver haired Command Wolf Pilot was just horrible. He could not sound more bored. Van’s sister’s VA also isn’t a very good actress.

All in all, a pretty good first episode that leaves a nice cliffhanger-ish ending to have you chomping at the bit a little to see what’s up with both Zeek and the girl, Fiona.

Rating: 8/10

Episode One-Derland – One Outs

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Plot: Kojima is an all-star professional cleanup batter who has won many awards for his achievements in baseball. However, one achievement still alludes him; a championship victory. In an effort to make this year the year that they finally win a championship, Kojima has brought his team to an off-season baseball camp in order to pinpoint their problem areas and address them. When his pitcher, Nakane, injures his finger in practice, he and another member of the team go out to find a replacement pitcher to help Kojima and the team practice. They find no luck on the streets but a woman leads them away to a batting cage where a bunch of guys are playing a game called One Outs. In this game, bystanders bet on either the pitcher or the batter. The pitcher wins if he manages to strike out the batter or if their hits land within the infield. The batter wins if they manage to hit one ball in the outfield or further.

Nakane makes a few minor bets for a few rounds, resulting in what he believes to be 4000 yen, slightly less than $40 USD. However, he fails to realize that the bets are in American dollars, meaning that he owes $4000. Believing that he can beat the pitcher, Toua, that has been up for the entirety of their betting string, Nakane bets that his debts be erased if he can beat him. However, Toua wishes to up the stakes of their bet from $4000 to $40,000. Nakane accepts, but under the pressure of such a high financial stake and realizing that there’s more to Toua’s skills that meets the eye, fails. They give them everything they have in their pockets, including credit cards, and are forced to leave with the remaining debt over their heads.

The next night, Kojima arrives at the One Outs game to call Toua out in order to erase the remaining debt. However, Toua again wishes to make the bet more interesting since Kojima’s such a professional player. This time the bet is $400,000. Kojima accepts and the game begins……

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Breakdown: I hate baseball. And this isn’t just the typical moanings of someone who doesn’t like sports entirely. I like hockey and soccer and I’m pretty okay with watching football and even basketball, but baseball is just horrible to me. There are no redeeming aspects of it in my eyes. It’s boring on top of boring slathered in boring and goes on for so long you have to think some of the players believe they’re stuck in baseball purgatory. You could not pay me to sit through a game of baseball unless I’m allowed to sleep through the whole thing.

With that out of the way, the baseball aspect of this first episode really is the most trying for me. Especially considering that I didn’t get half of the terms. Luckily, fansubbers are awesome and add notes for that crap. ~~kisses2fansubbers~~

Other than that, though, it’s an interesting enough sports anime. Our main character is incredibly passionate about baseball to the point where he even states that it’s sacred to him. And you can definitely tell that even those who don’t outwardly appear as passionate about the game as Kojima are still immersed in it fully……I can’t relate, but I still understand. It’s so weird how I can relate to and understand a show where the main focus is a game based on poetry that I’ve never heard of or played better than one based on America’s past time…

Toua is interesting. He’s a bit too good to the point that it worries me. By all means, the characters point out how weak his pitches are yet no one can get a damn hit off of him. Plus he’s one of those quiet yet obviously cocky types that irk you the wrong way.

Nakane’s a moron. He means well in trying to find a replacement pitcher, but putting all those bets down on the batter because ‘he has to win eventually’ and not clarifying if the bets were in Yen or dollars when a lot of the players at the game are seemingly American? Come on. Also, he’s not really dumb for taking on Toua despite seeing him win all those times since he states that he was a cleanup batter on his high school team, but he’s still a pitcher, meaning his batting game has to be rusty, and he’s seen how good Toua is.

There’s another character with glasses whose name escapes me and I can’t find listed anywhere who basically tries to reel in Nakane and makes hindsight observations. He was fine, but I guess he’s not going to be very prominent in the future.

One thing that bothered me a bit was the narrator. He’s one of those busybody narrators who cuts into the story to tell us stuff about the story like backstory, primary goals of the plot, what’s going on in a montage, recapping stuff we just saw etc. Guys, it’s show don’t tell. Even if it’s not one of the characters doing this, it’s really friggin’ annoying. He pops up all the time and won’t shut up. It really breaks up the flow of the episode.

The story is not all that great so far. Big time star is training to win a championship and needs a replacement player with an incredible one found just around the corner mixed with a plot where characters are swindled out of money and need the main character to clean up their mess (well, I guess he is the cleanup batter.) The only seriously interesting part is wondering whether Kojima can beat Toua but since the episode ends before the game even starts, the rug gets pulled out from under you there.

The art and animation, done by Madhouse, are….okay. Most of the character art is good, if not somewhat ugly. Toua’s hair is cool, but his eyes are freaky and his body is almost grotesquely detailed and skinny. That part in the OP where you see him nearly naked is more worrying than attractive. Why he’s nearly naked in the opening, I do not know. I’m almost certain you usually wear clothes in baseball.

The animation is alright, but I don’t believe it’s some of Madhouse’s better works.

The music is fantastic, with part notes to the awesome OP done by Pay Money to my Pain.

Overall,

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This was nearly an ‘undecided’ but I think the characters could be strong enough to support this show even in spite of the baseball snoozefest, and despite not liking baseball I do have a soft spot for sports anime.

Recommended Audience: Toua is nearly naked in the opening. That’s pretty much it. E for everyone?

Wanderful Days (Manga) Review

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Plot: Akira is a scary looking kid that everyone takes as a devil or delinquent. He’s earned the nickname of The Rabid Dog Fujishima, though he’s not nearly as bad as everyone makes him out to be. While he is a bit rough around the edges, he has a great love of dogs and is actually quite kind. One day, Akira saves a dog from being hit by a car. Sadly, he dies in the process, but his soul is inserted into the body of the dog he saved. He gets adopted by a kind girl named Hinata who takes him in and names him, coincidentally enough, Akira. As he tries to adapt to life as a dog, he discovers that Hinata is one of the few people who actually shows legitimate caring for him; both before and after he died.

Breakdown: On the surface, this looks like a really silly manga. And, yeah, the premise is a bit of a hurdle to get over, but it’s, surprisingly, a pretty good one-shot. You really feel for Akira’s plight even if they play up all sorts of the obviously awkward aspects of being a dog, even some that are played up pretty much just for awkwardness based on the fact that he’s actually a teenage boy. For instance, she bathes with him and sleeps with him, and even lets him, accidentally, put his face in her naked crotch.

Akira was just born with a really ‘evil’ looking face. Even as a baby he was feared by people, including his parents. Because of this, he didn’t have any real friends and no close relationships. He was challenged by all sorts of thugs and earned a reputation due to his fighting back, and kicking ass at that.

Hinata’s a very kindhearted and slightly airheaded girl. Her parents died and she lives alone, though she doesn’t seem to take care of herself very well since her room’s a pigsty and she constantly forgets to lock the door.

When the people at Akira’s school learn that Akira died, they all either don’t care or rejoice since they viewed him as a devil. The only one to cry or even show any sadness over Akira’s death is Hinata. We learn that Hinata actually knew Akira through one chance meeting when they were a couple years younger. She was crying and injured for some reason and Akira, also visibly wounded, probably due to a fight, stopped and tried to cheer her up and tend to her wounds.

In a pretty touching scene back in the present as Hinata mourns Akira’s death, Akira tries to cheer up Hinata in the way most dogs would – he licks her face. But not in a creepy way. It’s touching because it’s just sad all around. Absolutely no one but Hinata cares that Akira died despite the fact that he wasn’t even a bad guy; he just looked scary and had fights forced upon him. If anyone would need cheering up after that, it would be Akira, but all he cares about is Hinata’s feelings and treasuring that, despite only meeting her for a second, she was able to see him for who he was and mourn his death.

They remain as a happy family until one of Hinata’s creepy classmates comes into Hinata’s apartment uninvited (the door was unlocked – She has a bad habit of doing that). When he believes she liked Akira and not him, he attacks her with a box cutter. Akira protects her and nearly gets stabbed, but Hinata protects him and gets cut in the process. Akira then goes crazy and knocks the boy out of the apartment and into a tree.

With the threat gone, Hinata points out just how similar he is to Akira and proudly enforces the honor of the name of her lost friend Akira. With a bark (wan; the Japanese sound for a dog bark, hence the pun title WANderful Days.) he gladly accepts his ‘new’ moniker and place as Hinata’s loyal dog.

Some people pointed out that it might’ve been better if he turned back into a person in the end or if Hinata died and became a female dog to be with him forever, but I’m actually pretty okay with how this ended. Technically, the first option would’ve been fine because the soul of the original dog is still around. He’s actually the weakest part of the manga because he basically just instructs Akira to act like a dog and do perverted things. If she wanted to keep the dog and have Akira back, it could’ve happened, but time would’ve needed to reverse or something because you can’t just say he’s dead and have him get better……Then again, dying and becoming a dog isn’t any less believable.

The second option just seems terrible to me. It’s a bit predictable and I don’t want Hinata to die just to become a dog and have a dog-mance with Akira. In the end, while romance was a factor a little, all Akira wanted was a true family and someone to really care for him. All Hinata wanted was a family and someone to love. In the end, they both got that. The only thing that really bothers me is that…..Akira’s time on earth is still pretty limited. He’s a dog, and seemingly a somewhat old-ish dog at that. Chihuahuas have decent life spans, but they’re still nothing compared to how long Hinata will probably live.

Then again, I guess we’re not meant to think that far ahead and just live in the now. Akira and Hinata are happy and together, and that’s all that matters.

The art is nothing too special, and it’s done in fairly typical shoujo style, but it’s pretty good.

In the end, this is a pretty good one-shot that I’d gladly suggest to anyone looking for a touching tale of friendship/kinda romance. If you can swallow the slightly off-color premise, then you’re pretty much golden.

Additional Information and Notes: Wanderful Days was written and illustrated by Sakura Roku. It was serialized in Gangan Online.

Year: 2010

Volumes: One shot

Rating: 8/10

Recommended Audience: There are some panty shots and censored genital shots. Moderate violence and scary situations. 10+

 

Pokemon Extravaganza! Movie 01 (dub) – Mewtwo Strikes Back

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Rating: 3/10

Plot: DNA has been taken from the legendary Mew to make a clone called Mewtwo, supposedly the most powerful Pokemon in existence. Giovanni, leader of Team Rocket, orchestrated the creation of Mewtwo and wished to control him in order to take over the world. After being betrayed by Giovanni, Mewtwo decided he had more pressing matters to attend to besides the whims of a human. He wanted a purpose. He wanted to know why he existed. And more importantly he wanted to destroy the world too because humans suck, so do Pokemon and only clones shall rule!

Ash, Misty and Brock get caught up in Mewtwo’s scheme along with several other trainers who assumed Mewtwo was challenging them as the greatest Pokemon master. Can the power of cheesy speeches save the world from Mewtwo?

Breakdown: Ah….This is one of those things that is really a nostalgia bomb for me. This was the first movie I ever saw in theaters with a friend instead of my parents and this was right at the peak of Pokemon for me. The release for the movie was insane whereas now the movies can’t even seem to get theatrical releases anymore, at least around where I live. And I loved it so much that I’d watch it over and over.

…..Now that I’m an adult, who still likes to watch and play Pokemon but sees it with a more critical eye, I……don’t like this movie nearly as much as I used to. It’s very preachy and hypocritical. 4Kids, despite advertising this movie like it was a cure for cancer, made several mistakes in the script and changed it severely from its original version, which I will review after this. And it’s fairly cliché. At the very least it gave us a tiny bit of insight into Giovanni, but look where that lead us. Nowhere to the best of my knowledge. He does nothing, and he’s much more interesting and compelling in the manga than he ever was in the anime.

That’s not to say there’s nothing to enjoy here, but I have a lot more problems with it than I had as a kid and my love of the movie has definitely waned.

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Our movie starts out underwater where our narrator is getting all existential on us by wondering about the meaning of life and the mysteries surrounding our existence. We’re also following a Mew flying through the sky as the narration goes on. Throughout the narration, we hear Mewtwo whispering stuff like “Who am I? “What am I?” before the narrator segues into our story and a new scene.

Enter Mewtwo….’s eye, as we see him staring through a tube filled with citrus Crystal Light at several scientists. He thinks to himself that what he is seeing right now is not the same place he was in before and that he believes he might’ve been dreaming. Is Mewtwo insinuating that he remembers being a Mew or that he has the same memories as the Mew that he was cloned from?……I’m no scientist but I don’t think that’s possible.

Mewtwo breaks out of his tube and one of the scientists starts explaining the backstory of Mewtwo. He’s the clone of the legendary Mew, but he has also been genetically restructured to be even more powerful than Mew and to be the strongest Pokemon in existence. Mewtwo doesn’t much care for this and I can’t say I blame him. If I was created with giant balls on my fingers I’d be pretty pissed too.

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In his rage, he starts breaking everything in the lab with his psychic powers. I will never understand situations like this.

Scientist: “We’re going to create the most powerful being ever! Muahahaha!”

Scientist 2: “YES! How shall we contain it?”

Scientist: “A glass tube!”

Scientist 2: “….Uh….anything stronger?”

Scientist: “Weak metal robot arms!”

Scientist 2: “….Anything….else?”

Scientist: “Nope!”

Scientist 2: “Won’t it break out then?”

Scientist: “I’m sorry, I can’t hear you over all the world I’ll be dominating!”

I’m actually somewhat surprised 4Kids didn’t try to skirt the very obvious fact that those scientists all died in there. They never say it, but they couldn’t have survived that and you never see them again. They could’ve pulled a DBZ and said they escaped in the nick of time with parachutes…..on the ground….*cough*

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Mewtwo gloats about how powerful he is. Lines like this really contradict the fact that the story’s supposed to make us empathize with Mewtwo to an extent. “I’m just a clone? A shadow of Mew?…….I AM THE MOST POWERFUL POKEMON IN THE WORLD!!!!………but why am I here? :(“

Giovanni shows up with an offer for Mewtwo. He tells him that his powers are out of control and he has a way to focus his powers to help him take over the world. I’d like to point out that this plot line comes out of nowhere. I mean, we know why Giovanni wants to take over the world…………..he’s…..evil? But why does Mewtwo want to do that all of a sudden? Because some scientists treated him like a science experiment and he wants to find his purpose? Seems a bit illogical is all.

Giovanni outfits him with some weird armor that is supposed to help Mewtwo focus his powers, and he puts it to the test in the Viridian Gym. Mewtwo slams an opponent’s Onix into a wall and Mewtwo says “Sooo, this is my power!”…..Yes, Mewtwo, that’s your grand focused power….putting an Onix through a wall. You’ve finally found your purpose.

You blew up an island earlier without breaking a sweat, why are you impressed with yourself here?

I guess Onix-Throwing isn’t a big sport as he moves on to Tauros wrangling next. We see a montage of other battles in the gym after that with Mewtwo battling an Alakazam and a Magneton. However, most fans will note that part of that montage is Mewtwo’s battle with Gary and his Arcanine and Nidoking that was seen in the regular series. I think that’s a rare occasion where the series poked at one of the movies.

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Despite having fun making other Pokemon float in the air, Mewtwo still feels unfulfilled in life as he desperately wants to know his purpose.

Giovanni, ever so smart, responds to Mewtwo’s queries about his purpose by saying Mewtwo’s purpose is to serve him, and that all Pokemon are meant to serve humans – not be their equals. In response to this betrayal and his arrogant words of stupid, Mewtwo breaks free of his bonds. Again, nothing in place to prevent this? Nothing at all? Just hope the all-powerful Pokemon with a temper will obey you without question even after you basically call him a slave?

Mewtwo blows up the place and leaves, showing us yet another shot that was included in the series.

Mewtwo flies back to the island where he was created because….Good memories there, right? He’s still moping about his purpose and then states that he’ll mow down humans and Pokemon if they decide to oppose him. Then he basically states straight out that he’s going to take over the world.

4Kids breaks out the CGI and we get our title screen…Ten minutes into the movie. Dang.

We cut to a meadow where we see everyone’s favorite main Pokemon protagonist, Ash,

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And Misty and Brock who are preparing for lunch….They also have a huge table and a parasol for some reason. How are they carrying that with them? I would say this is a set picnic spot, but it’s in the middle of nowhere.

Ash is lazing about because he’s hungry when another trainer with a skull and crossbones bandana walks up to them and asks if they know a trainer named Ash from Pallet Town since he wants a battle…..Who is this guy? How does he know who Ash is? How did he know he’d be in this meadow? Is he just wandering around random places wondering where Ash is? I wouldn’t be so curious if not for the fact that he pops out of nowhere and leaves just as suddenly with no explanation as to anything about him; not even his name.

Ash points out that he’s….er Ash, and they have a battle as the remixed theme plays. I like the remixed theme, but it’s not as good as the original in my opinion. Ash calls out Bulbasaur first while the opponent calls out a Donphan, but Bulbasaur blasts him away with a Solar Beam that took way too short of a time to charge by the way. Ash then praises Bulbasaur as we see that he’s being monitored by cameras.

Now, stopping here for a moment, this next part confused me as a kid and I never figured out what the cause of this was until I got older. Actually I still don’t understand what the cause of it is, but I understand what is actually occurring in this scene a little better. When Ash’s opponent calls out his next Pokemon, Machamp, the scene of Machamp emerging and flexing his muscles is shown twice….And not only that, but we see Ash call out Squirtle without throwing his Pokeball. What happened?

Well, according to Bulbagarden’s comparison, apparently the original footage is perfectly fine. The dub screwed with this for seemingly no reason. They repeated the footage of Machamp emerging and flexing to seemingly lengthen the battle, maybe to match the new theme, yet cut the shot of Ash throwing Squirtle’s Pokeball to shorten the scene. The edited version is the exact same length as the original. Basically they purposely made this scene look like it was edited with a chainsaw for no reason whatsoever. Sense: Not produced by 4Kids.

Back to the show, it’s Squirtle vs. Machamp now and Squirtle easily beats Machamp with one Bubble attack…..Wow….You fail, Machamp.

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You don’t even have a weakness to water. Go sit in the corner and think about what you’ve done.

The opponent then decides to cheat (but Ash doesn’t call him out on it for some reason) by releasing three Pokemon in battle at once; a Venomoth, a Pinsir and a Golem. Not fazed by this at all, Ash lets Pikachu give one good Thundershock and it instantly KO’s all three because Pikachu can just do that okay? Also, if you’re going to have a scene where Pikachu one-hits three Pokemon at once, why make one of them a Golem?….The Pokemon that…ya know….shouldn’t even feel Electric attacks?

Misty: “Well that sure was a shocking ending.” Someone do me a favor and find out just how many times 4Kids has made a ‘shocking’ pun over the course of the entire series. The number has to be staggering.

Cut to Jessie, James and Meowth who are watching the group with binoculars and talking about how jealous they are of the others eating a big meal while they’re starving.

James: “There’s another credit on Pikachu’s charge account.” Scratch the previous request; just check for any electricity related puns.

I should also note that Ash is feeding Squirtle and Bulbasaur here, but he’s not feeding Pidgeotto or Charizard. All Pokemon must earn their meals through battle!

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We cut to the camera again which is now seen attached to a Fearow’s neck as it flies around. Back at Mewtwo’s redesigned island of doom, a Nurse Joy, under the control of Mewtwo, asks if she should send an invitation to them as well. I guess winning a battle like that without breaking a sweat when, logically, it should’ve been much more difficult, and managing to defy the laws of Pokemon type in that last match are pretty impressive feats.

Mewtwo sends out his messenger Dragonite to give a letter to Ash and…this never occurred to me before now, but why exactly aren’t Ash and the others amazed by this? The only exposure they’ve had to Dragonite before now has been in the episode with Bill where it was only seen in shadow as a giant and was touted as one of the rarest Pokemon ever seeing as how they had no real information on it at that time. They see one face to face playing messenger boy and they don’t bat an eyelash?

Anyway, Ash gets a card that reveals a hologram inviting him to Mewtwo’s New Island claiming that it’s a challenge from the world’s strongest Pokemon trainer (And he’s called the world’s greatest Pokemon ‘Master’ throughout the film.)

Ash can’t wait to accept the invitation and immediately sends off his response. Dragonite starts to fly back to New Island when Team Rocket stops him with a frying pan. Well surely they’re impressed by the Dragonite and want to capture—nope, they pay it no mind. Oh well!

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The acceptance card falls out of Dragonite’s bag and Team Rocket wonders what it’s saying ‘yes’ to. I suppose sometime afterward they also discovered the hologram card because there’s no real way they could’ve known what was going on the next time that we see them unless they did.

CONTINUED ON PAGE 2

Cartoons Step-by-Step: Danny Phantom Episode 1

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Plot: One month ago, Danny Fenton’s life changed forever when he walked through a ghost portal of his parents’ invention and accidentally activated it while inside. The incident made him half-ghost, allowing him to maintain the look of a regular boy but also gaining ghost abilities and the ability to transform into a more proper ghost form, Danny Phantom. Unfortunately, Danny’s activation of the portal has also made it so that ghosts can sneak into the human world and cause havoc. Danny’s taken it upon himself to stop these ghosts with his powers while trying his best to keep his powers a secret from everyone else but his two best friends, Sam and Tucker.

In the series premiere, Danny’s first opponent is a lunch lady ghost that attacks Casper High after Sam changes the menu to exclude all meat items in lieu of an ‘ultra-recyclo-vegetarian’ menu, much to the lunch lady ghost’s disdain.

Breakdown: Ah, Danny Phantom. Arguably Butch Hartman’s best work. A simple tried and true tale that, to be honest, we’ve heard a thousand times before, but done in such a way that brought a fairly fresh spin on the story with plenty of memorable characters and storylines along the way.

Actually, put another way, it’s like the story of Spider-man but melded with Ghostbusters.

And, really, if you want to dissect this, it is a whole bunch of cliches, some even taken from Fairly Odd Parents. An unpopular kid who has trouble fitting in at school, bullied by the school jock who gets away with nearly everything, also targeted by jackass teachers, is given abilities that make his life even more complicated. The only two people who know about his powers are his two best friends, the tech genius Tucker Foley and the opinionated goth chick, who is obviously set to be a love interest, Sam Manson.

His parents are basically two bumbling idiots who never catch onto Danny’s secret in the least and are always causing trouble for him with their weird behavior in ghost hunting and odd inventions. However, they do help out inadvertently sometimes by inventing things Danny can actually use, even if his parents have no clue how to make them work.

His sister is the one who seems to break tradition here as she seems to fancy herself a psychologist in training who always tries her best to seem adult and mature. She deeply cares about Danny and worries about his well-being growing up in a household with such odd parents.

Our first enemy, the lunch lady ghost, is admittedly not very threatening. In fact, not many of the first season ghosts really were. However, that’s alright here. We’re just being introduced to the world and the characters, so having a somewhat silly ghost who actually can hold her own, even if her attacks are silly, is fine. They’re all mostly meat-based, even if she has some pyrokinetic abilities. Most of her abilities can be eaten or squished, but they can sometimes be overwhelming, especially when Danny doesn’t have a good grip on his abilities quite yet and even has trouble keeping his Danny Phantom form.

It’s interesting that the only reason the Fenton Thermos starts working is seemingly because Danny puts some of his ghostly energy into it, but does that fix it permanently or does he need to keep feeding it that way when he needs it? Because other non-ghost characters use the thermos in the future.

The conflict between Sam and Tucker felt a bit odd in this episode. Usually they reserve episodes where the main character is caught between two fighting best friends for when they’re a bit more established, but here they just jump right in. I won’t say it’s a bad part of the episode, because it does highlight one of the main character traits of Sam in a decent manner, though I don’t think the same can be said of Tucker.

I mean, I’m pretty sure the fact that he loves meat stays true throughout the series, but it’s never really given any actual attention in the future to my recollection. Plus, I find it kinda immature that Sam doesn’t drop the issue when the school starts being attacked because she changed the menu. I know I said the Lunch Lady Ghost isn’t a big threat, but it’s still possible for her to hurt people, especially with her minor pyro powers, and Sam still won’t budge an inch.

Other than that, the only real notes I have is that there aren’t many jokes that work very well in this episode. Either that or they just don’t hold up very well. Jack had a few entertaining lines, but that was about it.

Rating: 7/10 Not starting off very strong, but it does what it needs to do and some more in a pretty entertaining manner.

Next episode: Parental Bonding: Danny asks his crush, Paulina, out to a dance, but has to deal with a dragon ghost in the meantime.

Final Notes: Addressing the theme song, it is indeed the earworm we all know and love. However, I can’t say I’ve ever been crazy about it in regards to quality. The fact that it starts with ‘Yo!’ is already kinda cringey and there’s a serious scent of 4Kids music to the whole thing.

Like Fairly Odd Parents and many many cartoons from the 80’s and 90s, the theme song explains the entire plot in expositiony lyrics, which is actually kinda necessary because, as you can tell, the show does not start with an origin story. It was meant to, but apparently they scrapped it when the theme song was finalized. They explore the origin story in an episode that comes much later, however, when they decide to give Danny his own emblem.

6 Angels Review

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Rating: 0/10

Plot:…….Uhh…..A bunch of girls in some special guard thing fight some guy who wants to destroy the world and….stuff happens

Breakdown: WARNING – LONG RANTY REVIEW. READER DISCRETION IS ADVISED.

This was…..an experience. I’ll give it that. I don’t know what kind of experience, but it was one. I don’t have much for introductions here, so let’s just get on with the show.

I can tell you something right now, I hate the artwork. I hate art styles that have the hair covering the eyes when it completely covers one eye or another, and leaves in the linework for the eyes while covered by the coloring for the hair. That looks so damn lazy it’s insane.

On top of that, it’s incredibly annoying. I can usually ignore it, but there’s this one chick with a bunch of orange yellow hair that hangs in front of her face that covers practically the entire side of her face and the linework for her eye shines right through it, making it looking crappy as sin.

The main girl, Maki as well as some Soviet soldier who comes out of nowhere and we’re expected to know or connect with also have hair that covers half their faces. The soldier is the worst as her hair veers off into some huge spike that doubles back towards her face. You’d think they’d want as much hair out of their face as possible considering they’re soldiers, but I guess her eye goes right through it anyway, so why bother?

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There’s one scene later on when one of the girls is naked lying splayed on her stomach and the art makes her look like a damn body builder when she looks slim in every other scene. (Also, warning, buttshot.)

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Then you have people with long pointy faces like in Vampire Hunter D.

And there’s also the main villain, but I’ll give you that taste of insanity in a little while.

The animation doesn’t fare much better. It’s choppy as hell and there are several scenes that seem like cardboard cut outs being panned over a background. In one episode with a character named Ed, I was laughing my ass off at how he was just sliding all over the place like the animator put butter on his character shot.

The CGI is mostly okay, but it contrasts badly with the awful traditional artwork. While objects made in CGI look perfectly fine, the ground and certain locations look pretty damn bad.

Another note: Gotta love when they don’t bother to spell-check anything that’s supposed to be on US technology. Not just any US technology, this is supposed to be the US government’s, specifically the president’s, computer system.

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That’s not a one-time thing either. It happens constantly. Later the screen spells “Cancel” as “Cancell”, “Warning” as “Warnning”, “Deceased” as “Decased” and the prison called Neo Purgatory is always spelled “Neo Pagatory.” Oh don’t bother spelling that focal location of our entire plot correctly. Oh and lest we not forget this gem.

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I wanna have that stitched on a pillow.

Sometimes they even misspell their own characters’ names like Terrie Canione (Terry Canyon) and Mariryne (Marilyn).

Okay, okay. Let me see if I can somehow mend the insanely broken plot of this movie together. Keep in mind, this is movie is so broken and hard to follow I had to do research after watching this movie to understand what was going on and I still have little clue, especially in regards to the ending.

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The movie starts out by telling us in super-fast subtitles (on the raw footage, though my subs were also awful) that war repeats itself, some meteor shower occurred and something about an angel falling. I couldn’t follow any of it. I guess no one else could either because none of my sources even mention this. The text also basically says that men are to blame and women are the only ones who can do anything about it. Oh God, I’m watching ICE again, aren’t I!?

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It’s the year 2026. The death penalty has been outlawed in the United States and now those meant to be on death row are held in an underground prison in the crater of a nuclear bomb explosion called Neo Purgatory. Just roll with it – this is the least of our problems.

After that, we’re introduced to our main girls, Maki, the Japanese named American leader of the girls, Doris, aforementioned girl with annoying silver and orange hair, Marilyn, some chick with yellow hair that has purple lines in it, Naomi the lone black chick becoming a double threat by also being a glasses girl, Naomi also has kids that don’t matter, and Katherine a red haired little brat I want to murder who sneaked on board their attack helicopter.

With them is Giga, a giant mech, and Link, a little robot pink rabbit thing who apparently acts like R2D2 in the helicopter and doubles as an alarm clock and convenient portable computer.

They work for the Guard of Rose which consists of only them. According to the Wiki, they’re the special guards for Neo Purgatory….Which makes no sense considering that their headquarters are stationed pretty far from there. Also, why would they need a specialized helicopter, a rabbit robot and a giant mech to guard such a place?

Link, by the way, is an official police robot. The government purposely made that thing to look like a pink rabbit….Also, if their credo is so much “women fighting men’s violence” then I really don’t understand their purpose at all. Are there no women on death row/Neo Purgatory? Are women just the kindest gentlest creatures ever? Coulda fooled me with all the gun fights and killing. Oh and congratulations on completely ignoring the issue of domestic violence against men, moron.

What kind of name is the Guard of Rose anyway? They guard Neo Purgatory. Are women roses? Is the prison a rose?

We see them fighting some rebels at Neo Purgatory who have missiles somehow (Outfit the prison filled with serial killers and rapists with accessible missiles immediately!) Katherine, a stowaway on their helicopter, is detained by Giga and their helicopter gets shot down. Before you can say “shortest movie ever”, Giga exits the helicopter and catches it, slowing it down just enough to not kill everyone. However, Giga’s badly damaged and needs repairs. This means he never does anything for the rest of the movie…..I mean it. They have a giant mech and do nothing but that with him.

US soldiers find them and rescue them from the wreckage as we cut to our villain preparing for more villain things. His name is Donn Canyon, though these subs seem to like calling him Tone Kane, (Not sure which is better to be honest. One sounds like a cartoon cowboy the other sounds like a cheesy action movie star.) and he looks like this.

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Yes, you are currently seeing this. This is a Fist of the North Star character after doing the fusion dance with Vash the Stampede, shooting up 400 gallons of steroids and inexplicably wearing an outfit with tons of tubes, pumps, bolts and for reasons beyond my understanding scissors and extractors. Look at him. Just….just look at him. Just stare in awe at how his character design was greenlit.

He’s working with his sons to take over Neo Purgatory and destroy humanity, but more on that later.

As the soldiers and the Guard of Rose are making a game plan, rebel prisoners show up. The mummy ninjas (try calling them anything besides that. They move and attack like Roadrunner while looking like this.

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brutally attack the soldiers, cutting their heads off and slicing them open. Also, it’s nice to know we’ll still have bad guys in 2026 who sport leather, spikes and mohawks. I was worried there for a bit.

It’s here where the girls, well, Maki, Doris and Marilyn at least, show off their magic science powers. That’s the only way I can describe it. See, their suits run on some sort of energy. I have no clue what kind of energy nor where any kind of battery can fit on those suits, nor how they recharge, but they do. Their suits summon weapons from nowhere like magical girls. Doris gets a sword, Marilyn gets a Boh staff while Maki gets some sort of lightning stuff that shoots from her fists.

I really have to ask, like a common question to Final Fantasy games, why are they using swords and even more confusingly boh staves when guns are a thing? Hell, this is 2026 so they probably have way better guns. They do use pistols, but why are their specialty weapons swords and boh staves? I don’t even know what Naomi gets if she gets any weapons since she seems to play a support role and the only thing we see Katherine do is use pistols.

The girls are doing well in the battle when energy bombs come from nowhere and start blowing everything up, followed by mechs shooting the energy bombs controlled by one of Donn Canyon’s sons, Terry Canyon. Terry Canyon also looks like crap and has a thing for old hard rock. He changes the songs as he increases the intensity of his attack and when he enters the “final secuence” He ends up blowing the girls up in the helicopter.

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Luckily two guys named JC and Mike, one of which sporting a horrible looking lavender beret for no reason, sneaks on board the helicopter to save the girls and brings them to a cell in Neo Purgatory.

Maki freaks out at the sight of them when she wakes up and nearly kills them while Naomi explains that he doesn’t know who they are or what they want. JC and Mike don’t explain, but claim that Ed Canyon, Donn Canyon’s oldest son and his second in command, told them that women or the Guard of Rose have bombs in their chests and they want to see it…..Okay, if the bombs are IN their chests, how the hell would you see them? On X-ray?

Hearing this, Maki does the rational thing and throws her bra in their faces showcasing her boobs to them as she talks about what violent filthy pigs men are. Right, you kill people with magic science lightning and guns and randomly take your top off in front of complete strangers, but they’re the violent filthy pigs. They’re so freaked out by her outburst and the sight of her boobs that they fall to the floor in a daze. Don’t worry, that’s just one of many things that make no sense.

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Maki, Naomi, Doris and Katherine are fine for reasons beyond my understanding, and they suffer no injuries that affect them over the course of the rest of the movie despite puddles of blood and wounds to the torso. They notice that Marilyn is gone and we learn that she’s been captured by the rebels.

While preparing for an assault to save Marilyn, Link detects a camera that runs across the rails of the halls of the prison and records any activity. Since Terry controls those cameras now, they’ll be caught if it catches them on camera. Probably wasn’t a good idea to take shelter inside of the place fully controlled by rebels then, was it? It’s like if they decided the best place to hide from the Empire in Star Wars was inside the Death Star.

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Episode One-Derland(Cartoons) Detentionaire

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Plot: Lee Ping is just entering 10th grade and is looking forward to the new school year. However, he’s framed for a massive prank and is not only given detention all year, but he’s also grounded for the same duration. Now Lee has to do everything in his power to find evidence that will lead him to the real prankster and clear his name, with the help of a ‘gentle giant’ bully named Biffy and his friends, the Scandinavian exchange student Holger, and the wanna-be gangsta Camillio.

Bottomline: I was on edge of dropping this near the middle. The start caught me on pretty well as the series has a nice and fairly unique style to it (seemingly normal but has a splash of sci-fi and fantasy). Though the art and animation do have that weird Flash bouncing habit. You know, when the characters seem to have rubber bands in their bodies that makes them slowly move back after quickly moving forward.

I will say that prank scene was wonderfully stylized though….even if they were stylizing puke.

Anyhoo, this is a pretty interesting premise, and, in the end, I really don’t have any idea who the real prankster is. From the silhouette, it looks like a bald person with glasses, but I could be wrong. I’m not sure if the prank is worth a year of detention and grounding, though. The prank dumped paint on everyone, set off stink bombs, threw junk everywhere and worst of all the stink made everyone throw up on each other.

He avoided the prank because he was in the rest room, making it seem like he’s guilty, then evidence of the crime is found in his backpack, which he left in the gym.

This prank gives Lee some mixed responses. Some people, like the new half-cyborg Principal Barrage and some of the students are very upset with him about it, while many others find his prank awesome and he becomes popular as a result. He even forcibly becomes the new boyfriend of Brandy, a self-absorbed popular girl. I can understand why some of the students found this prank awesome and funny but the girls? Especially the preppy prima donnas? Seriously? Keep in mind, this prank not only ruined their clothes with paint, but it also drenched them all in vomit. Why would they find that cool? And what’s more disturbing, not a damn person washes up after that. Ew.

Half of the beginning and the middle part is a bit of a chore to sit through as there’s not much that’s interesting or funny happening before or after the prank. However, the very beginning and the end ‘mission’ were enough to keep me entertained. Hopefully, now that the ball’s rolling, the show will keep a better momentum.

As a first episode, it does its job well enough. It established a decent portion of the world they live in, sets up the main plot pretty well and introduces many of the most important characters in a way that allows us to know them pretty well in just a few minutes. I like Lee, though Biffy was my favorite character. I always have a soft spot for the behind-the-scenes tech guy, and he was a nice spin on that trope, and he was, by far, the funniest character.

Holger was a little entertaining, though he was a little annoying and was pretty much a stereotype of nearly any foreign exchange student in a TV show (weird, overly clingy, extremely happy and has a thick accent). Cammilio was just flat out annoying and almost offensive in his own right. He always wears headphones for no reason, he speaks in the most wanna-be way possible, he wears a big gold chain with a gold watch on it. And for some reason he wears a giant fur coat.

I can’t see an iota of depth to his character and I’m not hopeful we ever will see depth in him.

Final Verdict?

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This just barely edged out an ‘undecided’ and I was almost convinced to make this a ‘no’ as the more boring parts of the episode wore on, but it managed to hook me back in with Biffy and the ending.

Recommended Audience: Vomit and some extremely minor ‘swearing’ (crap and ‘I’m screwed’). Outside of that, it’s mostly fine. 7+

Dissecting the Disquels: The Lion King 1 1/2

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Rating: 7/10

Plot: Let’s go back to the beginning of The Lion King….or moreso before the beginning. To the origins of Timon and Pumbaa and a retelling of the movie through their eyes.

Breakdown: I didn’t mind Timon and Pumbaa much in TLK, one of my favorite movies ever. I will admit that it was a drastic tone change when they were introduced, but Disney has a habit of doing that when something particularly heavy happens (think Bambi’s mom → Oooh look at the birdies!). They had some funny moments and they were okay in TLK2. They are some of the more tolerable comic relief sidekicks, but…I still never really liked them much.

I guess I just get tired of Timon’s snarkiness and Pumbaa’s constant fart/bad smell jokes. Moreso Pumbaa to be honest. His only bits are farting/bad smell/gross out gags and the fact that he’s fat. While he has decent banter with Timon, he’s a one/two trick pony with jokes that aren’t even funny. However, I can’t imagine I’d want to watch them in a TV series or watch a movie about them.

Luckily, both things were created. TLK 1 ½ is a movie that answers the burning questions of Timon and Pumbaa’s story before and during TLK. And, hey, at least this one’s honest about being a midquel…or mid-prequel instead of a sequel….BUT….they kinda messed that up because it should really be TLK ½ because 1 ½ kinda sounds like it overflows in TLK2, but whatever.

Here’s the thing, this movie isn’t like other Disney ‘sequels’ in that it’s actually Timon and Pumbaa watching a movie version of Timon’s backstory, how he met Pumbaa, them raising Simba and their part in the climax. They watch the movie in silhouette in much the same fashion as MST3K, but the thing that falls apart in that concept is that they don’t riff the movie or anything, they just pop up at certain segments to make a hindsight joke or reference about the situation.

And I do have to say, these are just completely pointless and non-funny moments. Rarely is there a legit funny joke in these cutaways.

You may be wondering why this format is being used at all. Well, like TLK used Hamlet as a template and TLK2 used Romeo and Juliet, this movie is using Rosencrantz and Guilderstern Are Dead, a retelling of Hamlet through the eyes of two dead characters, as its template.

I’m also not very keen on reviewing this step by step since the format is so different plus it’s retelling the movie just with jokes and more focus on Timon and Pumbaa. So I think I’ll just break down the major features.

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This movie counts as a prequel and midquel because it also focuses on Timon’s origins, which occur before Simba is born. Timon was born in a wasteland far away from Pride Rock; so far that you can only barely see it on the horizon. Timon lives with a group of other meerkats who are obsessed with digging and hiding from hyenas. We get that from their song “Digga Tunnuh” which, while being an earworm, is one of those incredibly useless songs. It really only serves the purpose of establishing that meerkats as about as set in their worker/paranoid ways as the ants from Antz.

Timon is, as predicted, the one who causes all the trouble in the group and is different from the other meerkats who just want to work. He wants a better life in a better home where he doesn’t have to worry about hiding from hyenas and where his life has purpose.

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He has a slightly overbearing mother named ‘Ma’ (A single mother in a Disney movie? Wow.) voiced by Julie Cavner IE Marge Simpson and a great uncle named Uncle Max who is Jerry Stiller being every Jerry Stiller role. They actually parody the scene where Mufasa shows Simba the Pride Lands by giving the speech and ending it by saying everything the light touches belongs to someone else.

We also get jokes about the circle of life by implying that they don’t fit into it well because, despite the fact that they’re so low on the chain, they don’t eat the grass that their predators become. However, if they’re insectivores, then that joke doesn’t work entirely because the bugs eat the grass and they eat the bugs. There are still living beings lower than them on the food chain.

His mother tells him that, despite his dreams of a better home, it’s their place in life as meerkats to merely do what they do; dig and hide. After a mishap with Timon causes their tunnels to collapse, Timon’s mother decides he might be better suited for sentry duty.

It’s an easy enough job, but Timon screws it up by taking the mantra that sentries are supposed to follow (Scurry, sniff, flinch) and turning into a song, “That’s All I Need.” It’s okay-ish, but it really gets lost in the middle and even the movie decides to cut it off early by having the hyenas interrupt it.

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After the attack, he’s shunned even worse by the group and decides that he has to leave and explore to find his place in the world. He departs from his mother, which is actually a pretty touching scene, and heads on his way.

He meets Rafiki after he gets lost, which may or may not cause plot holes. I do remember Timon asking ‘Who’s the monkey?’ after Simba decided to go back to Pride Rock in the first movie, but whatever. We learn that Rafiki is actually the one who taught him about Hakuna Matata. His advice leads him to ‘look beyond what (he) see(s)’ and decides that he has to go to Pride Rock to find his paradise.

He meets Pumbaa completely by chance by just bumping into him (Yeah there is really nothing more to that meeting) and Timon ‘hires’ him to keep predators away on his journey.

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Now we’re at the actual beginning of TLK and Simba’s presentation ceremony. Timon’s unhappy with the crowded Pride Rock, so he decides to check out a little spot ‘beyond’ it. It’s here where we get the one joke that is just plain horrid. Not only is it a massive fart joke, it also tarnishes the original presentation scene. Pumbaa doesn’t do well in crowds and you probably already figured out where this is going from that, but let’s continue anyway.

He tries to ‘hold it in’ as he makes his way through the crowd, but can’t and ends up tooting his ass horn in such a massive way that a ton of the animals at the ceremony fall over and that’s shown as the real reason why the animals bowed to Simba…….I have to tolerate Pumbaa’s fart jokes enough as it is, but when it sets out to ruin iconic scenes it just pisses me off.

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We get more clashes with TLK as Timon and Pumbaa wake up in their new home to the part of the movie where Simba and Nala sing “I Just Can’t Wait to be King.” I get that this happened shortly after the presentation scene in the original movie, but we’re also lead to assume that some time passed between the ceremony and the song seeing as how Simba is somewhat older. This movie basically says he grew up that much overnight. Unless there was a time skip in this movie too, but there’s no indication of that.

Their new home gets ruined and their journey to find their new new home leads them through several parts of the first movie such as the hyena attack, Be Prepared (at least the very first part anyway) and the stampede scene (kinda morbid how they’re playing up the scene in which Mufasa dies for laughs. He obviously isn’t seen in this movie dying, but you still know that’s what happening.) but they eventually stumble upon the perfect place seen in the original movie that they actually call Hakuna Matata.

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They then sing a remixed version of Hakuna Matata that I don’t like as much, but if it matters to you they added sing-a-long lyrics to the bottom of the screen in this one.

Timon’s mom, finding out from Rafiki that he’s ‘chasing metaphors’ decides to go off to find Timon, but not before smacking Rafiki in the head and smashing his foot. I love Rafiki and everything but it is kinda funny to see him get smacked for a change.

We’re finally at the point in the movie where Timon and Pumbaa rescue Simba. This is my favorite part of the movie because it actually showcases what we really wanted to see; what Simba, Timon and Pumbaa were doing during Simba’s time growing up.

The answer is; not much.

To be completely honest, it’s not like we’re meant to expect much anyway. Simba’s time with Timon and Pumbaa was portrayed as him just screwing around for months/years and that’s pretty much what they do. The point of these segments, however, is to show Timon and Pumbaa bonding with Simba as surrogate parents.

While much of it is comedic moments, there is a scene or two of genuine bonding. And we do see how much Timon and Pumbaa care about Simba, which was actually fairly lacking from the original movie as much of their bonding was held in Hakuna Matata before we quickly transitioned to Nala coming back and Simba going back home. While it may not seem important, it does add to their relationship more and gives some emotional standing to the scene where Simba decides to go back home, even if they do end up living with him afterward.

We also get to see more of Simba as a ‘teenager’ which is kinda cool.

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Sadly, this part is really short. The scenes with Simba growing up don’t even take up ten minutes and that seriously sucks.

Now for my least favorite part of the movie (barring the presentation fart joke); Timon and Pumbaa (mostly Timon) purposely trying to break up Nala and Simba for the sake of keeping their buddy around.

I dislike this scene because 1) it cuts away from Timon and Pumbaa really caring about Simba to selfishly not giving a crap about his happiness for the sake of their own. 2) It contradicts again with the original movie as Timon and Pumbaa don’t start singing Can You Feel The Love Tonight? (they do finish it, though) 3) It’s a Mushu-in-Mulan-2-esque mindset of random accidents meaning two people will break up and 4) It, again, really tarnishes a pretty good scene in the original movie.

I just liked it a lot better when they just accepted that Simba was going to be romantically involved with Nala. They were really sad about it, yeah, but they accepted it and seemingly decided to respect Simba’s desires. As the saying goes, if you really love someone, you’ll let them go. It just makes Timon and Pumbaa look like selfish assholes now.

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The scene after, when Simba goes back to Pride Rock, also creates an inconsistency because Timon initially said in the original movie that he thought Simba was with Nala when the preceding scene in this movie shows Timon and Pumbaa watching Simba and Nala have a fight and him running away from her. I know some liberties can be taken since this is a comedy movie, but this is still meant to be taken as canon. Plus if you give me a midquel on a movie I love, I’m going to nitpick you, it’s just law.

Timon’s mom and Uncle Max arrive and….Wait, what?! They just now found Timon?! Have they been looking for him for months/years? What the hell?

The actual climax; the battle with the hyenas and Scar, is completely different. They show none of the Timon and Pumbaa scenes that actually happened….well except the luau, and make up their own triumphant climax with the hyenas. I’m perfectly fine with the latter because the hyenas are gone for most of this scene in their huge battle (however, this scene does essentially mean that Shenzi, Ed and Banzai never heard Scar framing the hyenas.), but I don’t understand the former at all. I get that it would’ve been slightly repetitive, but it’s a retelling; it’s supposed to be somewhat repetitive from its original version, especially when you’re focusing on the scenes that the main characters of this movie were originally in.

After that’s said and done and Simba takes his place as king, Timon and Pumbaa return to Hakuna Matata (I’m just going to have to assume that’s what the place is really named) with Timon’s mom, Uncle Max and the rest of the meerkats where they can live in relaxation. This may or may not be the one inconsistency between this movie and TLK2 because it shows that Timon and everyone else are living in Hakuna Matata now when it’s shown in TLK2 that Timon and Pumbaa live at Pride Rock being Kiara’s babysitters/bodyguards and Timon’s family is nowhere to be seen. However, there’s some time gap between this and TLK2 so it’s possible that Timon and Pumbaa moved back between movies to help Simba out.

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Bottomline: And that’s TLK 1 ½. Despite the various inconsistencies with the original movie, not-that-entertaining every-once-in-a-while commentary and the stupid fart jokes, it actually stands as one of the more competent Disney seque—mid—pre—Somethingquel in the bunch, especially where the art is concerned.

Disney seems to be really good about taking care of TLK because as I’ve stated before the sequel is also one of my favorite movies. And it also is attributed to the fact that it’s a comedy and not trying to copy or cash in on the original movie. It’s just trying to have fun while paying homage to the original movie, and I’m all for that. I may not be the biggest fan of Timon and Pumbaa, but they held the movie well and many of the jokes legitimately worked, even if I still find the gross out gags to be dumb instead of funny. The tender moments felt real, and unless you’re incredibly nitpicky like yours truly you probably would pay no mind to the inconsistencies.

The music’s alright. There’s only two real original songs here; one’s not that good and gets interrupted and the other’s just an earworm.

I’d gladly recommend at least one watch if you’re a fan of TLK, but if you can’t stand Timon and Pumbaa (or fart jokes), you can skip it. You’re really not gaining any massive insight into the original movie.

Recommended Audience: There’s gross out humor, mostly fart jokes, but some boogers, the average bug eating, etc. Other than that, nothing. Also, I can’t really call fart jokes and boogers ‘mature content’ so E for everyone.