Review: Adventure Time, Clarence and The Day My Butt Went Psycho

Adventure Time: B+
Clarence: A-
The Day My Butt Went Psycho: C-

Gotta Gotta See It Adventure Time Promo (screenshot via Youtube)

Gotta Gotta See It Adventure Time Promo (screenshot via YouTube)

Who would’ve thought Teletoon of all places would try to revive Must See TV? Well, maybe they haven’t exactly brought it back, but their Thursday evening block seems to be heading that way. The network grabbed top performing mainstays like Adventure Time and new series such as Clarence and The Day My Butt Went Psycho in what they dub Gotta Gotta See It or Can’t Miss Thursdays.

When you tune in, chances are you won’t mistake any of their shows for the latest Disney/Pixar movie. The animation on Adventure Time, Clarence and The Day My Butt Went Psycho is rather crude in comparison to the best out there, which often rivals live action footage. Animation isn’t exactly where these series were meant to wow though. That’s even the case for Adventure Time, arguably the block’s or even the network’s signature show; that series often looks as if it was doodled by a grade schooler. These shows make up for the unimpressive animation with imagination, and just being more fun overall.

Adventure Time title card (screenshot via YouTube)

Adventure Time title card (screenshot via YouTube)

Adventure Time's Finn and Jake (screenshot via Daily Motion)

Adventure Time’s Finn and Jake (screenshot via Dailymotion)

Gotta Gotta See It/Can’t Miss Thursdays kicks off with Adventure Time at 6 p.m., which is quite an out there show. All logic is thrown out the window to the point that it’s like a bad acid trip. The series follows Jake The Dog, who is able to talk and transform into things instantly, and a kid named Finn The Human, who wears a hat that appears to have animal ears. Jake and Finn often find themselves in surreal situations with oddball characters in barren looking surroundings. Even with the rather lacklustre animation and random premise, you’ll have a hard time having more fun with anything on TV.

Jake helps Finn save his dad by turning into a wrecking ball (screenshot via Daily Motion)

Jake helps Finn save his dad by turning into a wrecking ball (screenshot via Dailymotion)

Adventure Time is so whimsical and imaginative that just a few minutes with it will instantly make you feel like you’re a kid again. It even takes the tired cliche story of a kid trying to find his deadbeat absentee father and still comes completely out of left field. It’s one of those cartoons you thought they didn’t make anymore.

Additionally, Adventure Time’s dialogue is really one of a kind and you won’t spot anything else like it on TV, especially with the characters randomly using awkward slang. For example, Finn says, “This must be where the prison cells be at. Good riddance. I hope you rot forever you awful jerk clapper.” The dialogue is that crazy.

While the show is fun, I think there are a few moments that would spook younger kids (screenshot via Daily Motion)

While the show is fun, I think there are a few moments that would spook younger kids (screenshot via Dailymotion)

Some of the show seems like it might be a bit much for younger viewers though, like when Finn’s dad’s leg was virtually incinerated leaving nothing but bone. It’s completely unrealistic, but still a bit freaky. It’s actually a bit hard to understand what is going on or why at times, but I think that’s just part of the charm of the show.

Clarence title card (screenshot via Daily Motion)

Clarence title card (screenshot via Dailymotion)

Teletoon airs Clarence right after Adventure Time. The two are animated in a similar way, and both are quite surreal. Clarence follows an oddball, school-aged kid, the titular Clarence, who can’t seem to fit in, leading to some awkward situations.

Clarence can be very odd, but also quite fun (screenshot via Daily Motion)

Clarence can be very odd, but also quite fun (screenshot via Dailymotion)

The show can be quite funny if you can stand the rather ugly characters and animation, as well as the random humour, which kinda comes across as possessed. It’s like a mix of Beavis and Butthead and Rocco’s Modern Life with a dash of Hey Arnold.

You’d have to be high to think Clarence makes any sense or is remotely normal, but that’s actually okay. Even though Adventure Time is like that in some regard, I find Clarence is just a smidgen better because it falls more in line with reality, although not by much. It’s also quite funnier.

The Day My Butt Went Psycho title card (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

The Day My Butt Went Psycho title card (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

I can’t say the same about the show following it: The Day My Butt Went Psycho. This program is probably more distinguishable from Adventure Time and Clarence when you take in the slightly cleaner animation style, but still that’s not saying much. The Day My Butt Went Psycho still looks juvenile.

It feels very surreal and illogical, a lot like the other two series as well, which is likely why Teletoon packaged them all together. Actually, this series is arguably the most illogical out of the bunch and it’s probably the last one you’d think is based on a book, but, surprise, it is.

The butts apparently have their own butts (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

The butts apparently have their own butts (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

The show follows a boy and his best friend, his own talking butt. His ass has eyes, a nose, mouth, eyebrows, legs, arms and even wears shorts and shoes. His butt is totally autonomous, which has to make you wonder why your ass is so boring and how that guy can walk around without one attached to his body.

The walking, talking butt pulled a brain out of itself, need I say more? (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

The walking, talking butt pulled a brain out of itself, need I say more? (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

If you didn’t think that was bad enough, the butt even pulled a brain out of itself. Yeah, this show is that stupid. It makes me wish I could pull out my own brain so I’d be stupid enough to find it entertaining.

The humour in the show seems almost exclusively based on kids thinking butts are funny andwell, that’s about it. It’s kinda like how a Chris Rock HBO special might be funny because you don’t hear people saying shocking things like that often—think that for kids.

Just when you thought TV couldn't get stupider... (screenshot via Teletoon)

Just when you thought TV couldn’t get stupider… (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

It’s a rather stupid idea for a TV show and isn’t helped by the fact that The Day My Butt Went Psycho makes no sense. While Adventure Time and Clarence are illogical, it’s not to the point where it’s just so distracting as it is on this series.

The Day My Butt Went Psycho is filled with dreadful puns (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

The Day My Butt Went Psycho is filled with dreadful puns (screenshot via Rogers Anyplace TV)

Oh and there are bad puns in nearly every episode too. The episode I reviewed, “Gran to Gran Combat,” featured a granny kicking butt, literally. Other genius episode titles include “Eternal Bunshine of the Spotless Behind,” “I-Robutt,” and “My Milkshake Brings All the Butts to the Yard.”

I’m not big on the 15-minute runtime for each of these shows though. It breaks the typical TV convention of half hour and hour-long shows; however, most cartoons essentially ran two segments within 30 minutes, so, I suppose it’s not much of a difference. I wonder if these shows were cut in half due to kid’s shorter attention spans these days. The instant gratification provided by the Internet and the sugar from all that processed food must make raising kids a nightmare today. Getting twice as many fast moving, completely random shows in a sitting on TV now likely doesn’t help.

You've come a long way baby (screenshot via YouTube)

You’ve come a long way, baby (screenshot via YouTube)

Despite that, Teletoon is probably the strongest it has ever been. I’ve watched it from nearly the start and the truth is it hasn’t been pretty. Angela Anaconda, Ned’s Newt, Maggie and the Ferocious Beast and Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends, didn’t have quite the following of major hits like SpongeBob, The Fairly OddParents or Phineas and Ferb on rival networks. Today, Adventure Time is already a beast by itself, Clarence looks promising, but unfortunately The Day My Butt Went Psycho is a miss. Two out of three isn’t a bad tally, however, especially for a channel like Teletoon.

Episodes Reviewed: Escape from the Citadel (Adventure Time), Pilot (Clarence) and Gran to Gran Combat (The Day My Butt Went Psycho).
Adventure Time, Clarence and The Day My Butt Went Psycho air on Thursdays as part of Teletoon’s Must See TV Gotta Gotta See It/Can’t Miss Thursdays

(Featured Image: Screenshot via YouTube)

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