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RB: Hey Mike?

Mike: Yes?

RB: How long have we been playing Super Smash Bros Ultimate and Mario Party?

Mike: 
Uh....well, good question, let's see here...uh...hmmmmm.....carry the seven...and...a number that I'm not comfortable with sharing!

RB: 
Holy crap! What has my life come to?! I haven't been to college in weeks! And I'm overdue on so many voiceover projects. Nintendo you monsters! You know what? It's time that I finally turned my life around! And you know how I'm gonna do that Mike?

Mike: 
Hmmmmm....playing more Smash Ultimate? Oh wow, it's affecting me too...

RB: 
No you big dingus. By watching cartoons!

Mike: 
Ah, duh! How could I forget? That seems to be the common strategy used around here...

RB: 
Not that video games aren't fulfilling, but you've gotta switch it up every now and then. I'll go back to school later, this is more important anyways.

Mike: 
I'd say the same thing, but I'm done with it forever now! But what exactly did you have in mind?

RB: 
Oh wow it really has been a long time hasn't it? Well, I think it's time we get weird one more time.

Mike: 
Oh yeah! I like the sound of that! And he doesn't mean it like that, get your mind out of the gutter, person reading this.

RB: 
Oh yeah, I forgot I was on DeviantArt. No matter, because we're going back to a show that has absolutely no lude fan art that I'm aware of, Gravity Falls!

Mike: But what about all the Pinec-

RB: MORE SPECIFICALLY, the last episode of the series.

Mike: 
Take Back the Falls is the title this time, although apparently I'm just finding out the second half has another title, Somewhere in the Woods. First I've heard of it...

RB: You know what, nobody really considers it two parts, and I also just really wanna be done with this finale, so let's just do both.

Mike: 
Fine by me. Thankfully, the reception of this one seems to be mostly universally positive, so no need to defend an overhated episode this time!

RB: 
At the same time though, with this being two parts, there's a lot to unpack. Especially one scene in particular near the end. But until we get there, let's have ourselves a smooth ride through Gravity Falls during the apocalypse!

Mike: 
And I do joke, but there are some scenes that even die-hard fans of this finale, including myself, take issue with, but we'll get to that. Let's see how they capped off this beloved series. We start out exactly where the last episode left off. The twins, Soos, and Wendy have made it to the Mystery Shack to find Grunkle Stan and a whole lotta fan service.

RB: 
Wow! It's so cool to see all these episodes that so many fans love.... give or take. Looking at you Celestabellbethabelle.

Mike: 
Ah well, at least we have the return of the Gnomes, the Lilliputtians, Multi-Bear, Larry King, Sev'ral Timez, the list goes on. And for the most part, the voice actors of their respective roles do return! That's a nice touch.

RB: And this time, none of them had to be dubbed over! And it's especially nice to hear them all reuniting.

Soos: Mr. Pines! It's really you! I've been hugging strangers to practice for this moment.
"Lol, Dipper's face here."

Mike: And of course, they don't skimp on the show's brand of excellent jokes. Though really, at this point, I don't think we'd expect anything less. But how did everyone end up here?

RB: 
It turns out that these are the only characters left as well as the only semblance of normalcy in this town. And you know that when a bull with fists for nipples is normal by comparison that things aren't right.

Mike: 
But as it turns out, the magic of the unicorn from the episode everyone hates kept the Shack safe when Weirdmageddon started. Old Man McGucket, meanwhile, led as many people and creatures as he could to the Shack, and the rest is history.

RB: With the mayor captured and everyone holed up in his house, Stan deemed himself de facto leader. His plan is to simply wait it out, and I don't blame the guy. Bill Cipher is no freakin' joke.

Mike: 
Even when Dipper informs him that Ford was captured, he doesn't seem to care, and this is where some people take issue with Stan's character in this finale.

RB: 
He even goes as far as to chastise Ford for trying to be a hero. And I'll admit, this is somewhat cruel of him. But I understand his reaction given the circumstances.

Mike: 
Yeah, I can somewhat sympathize with the feeling of hopelessness he has, even if it probably could've been worded less callously. Besides, it's not until later in the episode where he starts to become less sympathetic. Again, that's for later. A news report on TV informs the inhabitants of the Shack of the state of all the captured citizens, which is especially troubling for Wendy, Pacifica, and Blubs. Poor guy...some may find him annoying, but the poor guy's lost his Durland. You don't take his Durland.


Blubs: Why must they take everything we love?!?!?!?!

RB: 
Despite this report, Stan is still insistent that no one is safe if they leave the shack. This gives McGucket an idea on how to fight Bill and take back the city. So Dipper, Mabel, Soos, and Wendy brainstorm with McGucket while Stan looks on disappr-... wait a minute. How and why is Wendy there? Did she learn how to teleport or something?

       
Is there something Wendy isn't telling us?

Mike: 
Huh. That cut was really awkward. I'd say a wizard did it, but I think that would actually be normal for this show. We then cut to Ford, who becomes unfrozen, but is chained to the floor somewhere. I think you know who that means is coming up!



RB: Damn it Alex, stop teasing us with that cut Bill Cipher song we all wanted! I really hope he does a recording of it some day. It doesn't even need to be animated.

Mike: And he continues to do Bill Cipher-y things like drink from a martini glass out of his eye, point out that the couch Ford is sitting on is made of human skin, and brag about killing Time Baby. You know, I'd point out that this is beyond dark for a kid's show in some stereotypical over-the-top fashion, but...what can I even add? That couch is literally something a serial killer would own!

RB: 
Yeah, if this show wasn't animated, I have a feeling it'd be TV-MA. The reason Bill is messing with Ford in particular is because Gravity Falls' natural law of weirdness magnetism is keeping the yellow Dorito from leaving the town. Only Ford has the equation necessary to break it.

Mike: 
But if you recall from the episode everyone hates, Bill can't just enter Ford's mind due to the metal plate he has ingrained in his head. A consensual handshake is required if Bill is to make his way in, though he supposedly has his ways of persuasion....shudders Anyone else got goosebumps right now?

RB: I love this scene so much. Not only is it another showcase of how awesome Bill is, but it finally gives us an idea of what he's working to achieve. He plans on creating a better more fun world with a party that never ends and a host that never dies. So think Discord except WAY more catastrophic. I don't think even he went as far as drawing a gigantic smiley face on Ponyville.


Say cheese.

Mike: 
It's a kind of menace that you don't typically see in shows aimed for kids. Now, there's nothing wrong with a comedic villain or one that's generally more light-hearted. They have their place and they work well in their own ways. But Bill...you can tell, even when it looks like his back is against the wall, he's gonna pull something out of his sleeve to completely change the tide of the battle, whether its physical or mental. He's not just some insane guy, there's methods and cunning to his madness. He's like if Heath Ledger's Joker was made for a kid's show, and suddenly I realize why both characters have massive female fanbases...

RB: 
Uh... more power to them I suppose? McGucket has plans laid out for his first inventions not used for evil. Neat. Stan once again chastises everyone and even offends a French Lilliputtian who I am almost certain didn't actually say what the subtitles are claiming he said in French.

Mike: 
I'm sure someone else has looked it up. Soos asks if the invention has gun swords, as they're popular in the anime he watches, though McGucket says he hasn't watched anime, and....did I accidentally flip on Gumball and not realize it? Because if not, then a Disney show just referenced anime.

RB: 
I just never took Soos for a weaboo, good for him. Even if I'm still having trouble getting into anime myself. But the gang has a lot of work to do. It looks like we're gonna need a montage!



Mike: 
By the end of our building montage, as well as showing McGucket anime (yes, this is canon and yes it is amazing), the group's gathered and put together more gadgets and gizmos for defeating Bill, including one of the frozen dinosaurs from The Land Before Swine! Was wondering when they'd show up.

RB: 
Mabel even made everyone some sweaters for the occasion. Oh Mabel, even during the apocalypse you're just a little ray of sunshine. Stan however is still upset that everyone is going through all this trouble to do something that he already did all by himself. Ford still hasn't thanked him for saving him. Though if you've read the book, you'll understand why Ford was so p**sed about getting saved.

Mike: 
It's not the only time in the episode that a common complaint is addressed through the books, but no time for that. Time for everyone to get a good rest before the fight, which is nice. Calm before the storm to prepare the viewer, you know? There's even a great joke following this where Bud Gleeful is shown just barely getting by by burning dolls of his son. That's both hilarious and sad.

<im src= "vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/gr…">
Bud: Forgive me, boy. Your hyperflamable merchandise is the only thing keepin' me going. 

RB: 
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Shack-tron! The ultimate crowd pleaser in every sense of the word. Right as Ford is on the brink of death, the entire town comes in ready to save the day with a kick a** rendition of the theme song to boot. I know this show isn't popular for its fight scenes, but this is one heck of a spectacle to behold!

Mike: 
It's like they were saving quite possibly the best for last, and it is glorious to witness. There's a blend of CG and 2D animation thrown in throughout, though it's relatively seamless, as we see so many of our friends we've come to love take out Bill's henchmen in clever and funny ways. Though a brief moment of silence for Teeth, who sadly perished in the Weirdmageddon event of 2012. bows head

RB: To me, the best examples of series finales have always been ones that reward the viewers for having seen every episode. Avatar did this. Samurai Jack did this. Regular Show did this. Even Adventure Time, a show I used to find overrated, did this with fantastic results. The writers did everything in their power to get as many beloved characters in this fight as possible to contribute in meaningful and hilarious ways. Do not watch this episode if you're not a GF fan. Much like Infinity War, the experience just isn't nearly as powerful.


Mike: 
Not to mention, you'd probably be put off by Bill remembering Dipper and Mabel and suggesting to Ford that he might torture them as a means of leverage. That not enough? How about when he tries and fails to attack the Shack (remember, unicorn magic) and the T-Rex RIPS HIS F*CKING EYE OUT? I honestly wouldn't be surprised if the writers of the episode knew this was the finale, so since they knew they had no danger of being censored in the future, they just decided "Screw it, let's make this a contender for the darkest episode of the show while we're at it."

RB: 
Bill may be cunning and all that, but he's not perfect and gets quite irritated by the Shack's imperviousness. And the way he complains about how long it takes to grow his eye back kind of reminds me of that one time Cell had his tail ripped off. Priceless every time XD [link]

Mike: 
Following this, it's time for the main and secondary characters to enter the dreaded Fearamid and rescue everyone inside. While saving the world, of course. How to unfreeze everyone, though? Well, it appears as though our answer will come in the form of Gideon, who we last saw at the end of Weirdmageddon 1. And now, he's...being forced into dancing for all of eternity in a cage. Damn. Even I'm not the biggest fan and I can't help but feel bad for him.


I'M TIRED OF BEING CUTE!!!

RB: 
We all get tired of being cute sometimes. He tells our heroes that pulling out the mayor will cause the whole structure to collapse. A little simple, but understandable considering this special still has a lot more to cover.

Mike: 
And thus, all the characters are reunited with their loved ones. Pacifica and her parents, Wendy and her family, and of course, Blubs and Durland. I'd be doing you all a disservice if I didn't mention them. But seriously, it's a nice emotional moment that fulfills a sense of catharsis within the viewer, especially after seeing the buildup in the Shack earlier. It's also where Ford and McGucket meet up for the first time in years, where we get this great exchange:

Ford: Fiddleford. I--I haven't seen you since we parted ways. You must hate me.

McGucket: I've tried forgettin'...Maybe I should try forgiving. Come here, old friend. (Hugs Ford)

Like, damn. Yeah, you could argue it's rushed, but that doesn't negate the genuineness of the emotion you feel every second during this exchange.

RB: 
I wish we could've seen more episodes beforehand of Wendy with her family as well as an episode dedicated to them (like seriously, how did we never get a Wendy episode?!), but this scene is still impactful due to everything these characters have been through and the powerful delivery from the performers.

Mike: 
Yeah, the lack of a Wendy episode is certainly unfortunate. Guess she'll always be the unsung hero of the show.

So now everyone's freed, but what to do of Bill? Well, thanks to a convenient spray can Robbie happens to have (maybe he really liked Never Ending Story 2), Ford begins drawing something with it on the floor, and we pan back to see him form the Zodiac that appears at the end of every episode. And I have to say, for it to finally have a role in an episode is great, and it just seems right for it to be in the finale. Even if some of the character's symbols are a bit of a stretch. Pacifica is the llama based on the sweater she got this very episode? Um....okay?

RB: 
Hey, you can't deny how freaky that is, I know I'd be weirded out. And considering the week these characters have been enduring, that threshold is already very vast. After all the non essential characters exit, there's only one more spot left. And surprise surprise, it's designated to the one person who doesn't want to help.

Mike: 
Yeah, Stan's content to keep blaming Ford for all of this, and won't join in unless Ford thanks him for bringing him back in the first place. Which Ford does, but then Ford corrects a small grammar error made by Stan, and Stan ruins the circle. Which....sigh...isn't exactly what I would consider character-breaking or whatever, but A. it's contrived, and B. Come on, Stan, the literal end of the world is happening outside. Isn't this at least worth a try?

RB: I
n Stan's defense, nobody likes a grammar Nazi, and Ford probably should've kept that correction to himself, especially considering how on edge Stan is in the first place. Though I won't be too defensive of this move because it means that despite the two seasons worth of buildup we never find out what this zodiac actually does. And know Bill is back to terrorize our heroes after finding the Shack's fatal flaw. I know that what we get later is really good, but this anticlimax still leaves a sour taste in my mouth.


There is no f***ing way ha managed to draw a circle that perfectly, especially under all this stress.

Mike: 
This is one of those issues with the episode that I can completely understand people having. Maybe the fact that this all-powerful Zodiac is never used is a sick joke or something, but it probably should've been utilized better.

And it looks like big bad Bill is back, so way to go, Stan. He effortlessly destroys the circle and turns everyone sans both sets of twins into tapestries. And I have to say, Bill has never been scarier than he is now. It's not just the voice deepening at random, but it's the jerkish movements, the chill-inducing dialogue, and of course turning blood red certainly doesn't help. F*ck...

RB: 
Thankfully the terror doesn't last too long as Mabel takes advantage of Bill's glaring weakness. At this point Bill might as well be a boss in a Zelda game. He'd fit right in with all the other giant bosses with obvious glowing weak points. But then again, Nintendo probably wouldn't go this far.

Bill: I've got some children I need to make into corpses.



Mike: And it doesn't end there.

Bill: When I get my hands on you kids, I'm gonna DISASSEMBLE YOUR MOLECULES!

The fact that the two are able to run from this guy without sh*tting their pants is admirable, I swear. And, with some clever use of the shrink flashlight from the other episode people hate, Dipper and Mabel nearly escape, but are stopped in their tracks when they find out Bill's minions have recaptured everyone in the Shack. Oh, and Teeth didn't actually die and he eats Shmebulock. Oh, and Bill captures the two, so that's bad too.

RB: 
Hmph, I actually like that episode. We also get a very emotional exchange between Stan and Ford. Stan's finally showing remorse and even Ford admits that Stan wouldn't have fallen for Bill's tricks. Makes me really hope I never have a falling out with my siblings as well.

Mike: 
I will admit this exchange does slightly make up for their squabble earlier, but not completely. At least the episode's smart enough to acknowledge both screwed up.

Bill's back again and before he's able to just flat out murder one of the kids and cause a million people across the country to start crying profusely, Ford surrenders his brain to Bill on the condition that he frees the kids. Against everyone's wishes, the handshake occurs, and......... Okay, I and am sure a lot of people saw this coming but that doesn't make it any less awesome, Stan and Ford switched clothes and Bill is in Stan's mind as it's being erased with the memory gun.

RB: Which is an excellent use of the twin motif. Sure, they do that thing that annoys me personally where characters somehow do a perfect voice impression of someone else, but it's definitely just a nitpick. Bill may be my favorite villain ever, but seeing Stanley punch him into smithereens is one of the most satisfying send offs to a villain I've seen since Perfect Cell.



However, Stan doesn't punch him until after Bill's said something in reverse. If you play it backwards, it goes a little something like this.

Bill: My time has come to burn! I invoke the ancient power that I may return!

Do I hear a sequel anyone?

Mike: 
Well, if sequel is what you want, you can pick up Gravity Falls: Lost Legends! A comic compilation of events before and after the apocalypse! Where they answer questions that they probably should've answered in episodes like "What about the key from Irrational Treasure?" "What adventures did Stan and Ford have as kids?" and, most importantly, "Is anyone gonna address Mabel's selfishness?" Gravity Falls: Lost Legends. Available for $19.99 at your local Barnes and Noble.

RB: 
Also give the Journal a read. There was a lot of love put into it, and it also answers questions like "What did Ford do when he was trapped in the Nightmare Realm?" "Did the kids ever find that Larry Kind head?" and "Is using a love potion morally wrong?" That last one is still obvious, but they do provide more details that make the whole situation much more acceptable.

Mike: 
Back to the episode, with the defeat of Bill, everything has returned to normal. Weirdmageddon (the event, not the episode) is over, his henchmen are gone, and everyone's returned to normal. All that is except for Stan, who, as a side effect of the memory gun, has no memory of anything in quite a heartbreaking display where he can't remember his own brother or Dipper and Mabel.

RB: 
It's a very emotional scene that lasts for pretty much just a couple minutes. I'm not saying I don't want to see Stan live a happy life, but I feel like this would've been a lot bigger if they went all the way with this. However, this is another problem addressed surprisingly very well in the Journal. I could tell you what it is right here right now, but what would be the fun in that?

Mike: 
Wait, seriously? Man, I need to get further ahead in that....

But yeah, it is kind of a cop out with how fast his memory is restored just by looking at some pictures. Hell, I wouldn't be surprised if some people with Alzheimer's took offense to such an easy way out. But come on, it's another great display of emotions from the main cast and I don't think my heart would be able to take Mabel's grief had she lost her Grunkle forever. Come at me, Mabel haters.

RB: 
Kristen Schaal in particular does a really good job here. She may be one of the easiest voice actors to recognize in any cartoon, but there's a reason she's in so many of them.

Mike: 
Completely agree. Kudos to that woman, and f*ck anyone who says Mabel is just annoying and manipulative. Give this scene a watch and call me in the morning.

With Stan's memory restored, it's time for a bit of a "Where are they now?" segment via the news, and it's very satisfying. The Northwests lose their mansion and McGucket inherits it, Mayor Tyler passes a bill basically threatening to tase anyone who mentions the events of the previous three episodes (gulp), and Blubs and Durland confirm the fanfics of millions of fans of the show.

RB: 
Much like Adventure Time and Voltron, there's something very satisfying about these kid's cartoons ending with one last middle finger to all the dumb parents trying to protect their children from the dangers of homosexuality.


"You may now kiss the uh... guy who receives."

Oh hey, Toby Determined even got his nickname to finally stick! And apparently there's a new sport called Death Ball. Hell I'd watch it.

Mike: 
Hooray, he finally amounted to something! Go get 'em, Bodacious T, we're all rooting for ya!

And hey, it's still the twin's birthday, so time to celebrate that! And gathering the whole town together for it just makes it even better. It makes everyone feel less like strange people that just happen to live in the same place, and more like a real family.

RB: 
sniff It's honestly kind of beautiful. Even Gideon decides to become a normal kid. For the most part at least. Mabel destroys the memory gun, thank goodness, and Wendy declares Dipper and Mabel technically teenagers. I hope you guys enjoy the angst and acne.

Mike: 
Off to the side, Ford mentions to Stan that he's detecting anomalies near the Arctic Ocean and that he's becoming too old to investigate on his own. Which now means the two can finally explore the world and find treasure and meet hot babes in the Stan O'War II! But hark, I hear you ask, what of the Mystery Shack?

RB: 
Stan's first plan is to shut it down, but after Soos gives a really uplifting speech about how important the Shack is to the town, Stan realizes that Soos would be the perfect replacement. Remember the ending to the Spongebob Movie where Spongebob gets the job as manager? Well, this scene pretty much has the same energy. Also Abuelita is still adorable.

Abuelita: I move in immediately.

Mike: Like, look at that face. Look at his face when Stan puts the fez on him. It's like he combined every holiday into one and got everything he wanted, and even what he didn't know he wanted. He's giving Mabel's adorableness a run for its money.

RB: 
And thus comes the moment the characters, as well as all of us, have been dreading. One last scene where the characters say good bye to their friends and family. Grenda punches her heart because of all the feelings it's giving her, and Stan even wears Mabel's good bye sweater. But isn't it Summer? Why would you wear a sweater-

Ford and Stan: Can it Carrick!!!

All right geez!

Mike: Next up, it's time for Wendy and Dipper to say goodbye, and in one of the cutest moments in the series, she swaps hats with him so that they can have something to remember each other by. Not only is it, again, adorable as hell and fitting for her character, but it's...how do I put this...a shipping moment without being a shipping moment? We all know the two weren't meant to be as a couple, but like the show's said, that doesn't mean that all future interactions with them have to be cold and awkward. This moment feels totally natural and earned after all they've been through together without doing any annoying teasing of a future relationship. So thank you for that, Hirsch.

RB: 
But there's only one more character they've yet to say goodbye to. Oh God no, not Waddles too! Fortunately, the show does not go down this route. Right as Mabel begins to cry trying to make Waddles stay put (how can people still say they hate this character?), Stan puts his foot down and decides that if he had to live with a pig all Summer then her parents should have to as well. Only Gravity Falls can make a scene where two characters threaten an extra with violence extremely heart warming. Context matters folks!

Mike: 
And yes, that is an actual gun Ford has. Where'd he get it, how is it here? I'dunno, but the scene's bad*ss and hilarious, so I'll take it.


Ford what is that?
It's a gun from the future.
Where'd you get it?
HAHAHAHA!!!!

One tearful goodbye with the Grunkles later, and it's finally time for the bus to return to Piedmont. The...the sniffles the bus starts up and everyone chases after it while saying goodbye and....and.....begins quietly sobbing

RB: Oh don't be such a baby, I'll handle this. Dipper begins narrating while... w-while clips of the characters living happily play out. Dipper says that even if you can't find Gravity Falls, it's out there waiting for you. He then... oh God. He then opens the letter with everyone's names on it and a mess- convulses and gasps for breath A-and a message that says, "See y-y-y-y-ou n-n-n-ext Su- Oh who am I kidding, I can't do this! jumps out window

Mike: Wait for me! runs to and breaks out of an identical window

doors opens

RB'sB: That is the last time I let you trick me into watching Gay Brothers.

TRADE: Whoa! What the Hell happened here?

RB'sB: Didn't they say they were reviewing the Gravity Falls finale?

TRADE: ....That explains everything.


  • Listening to: My Chemical Romance
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: F is for Family
  • Playing: Smash Bros Ultimate
  • Eating: Pizza
  • Drinking: Milk
Hey Mike, you wanna finish that Weirdmaggedon review?

Mike: *playing Smash Ultimate*

Fair enough.

Welp, the people have spoken, and apparently you guys do indeed want more horse content from your residential voice actor. That's fine by me since Friendship is Magic, while not my favorite cartoon, gives me so much to discuss and talk about.

Season 8 in particular falls under this category since the levels in quality were ALL over the place here. From horrendous to beautiful, to funny and annoying, I don't think I've ever seen a more interesting season of any cartoon in my life, at least at a point in time when I was smart enough to look at it analytically.

Assuming I manage to get this out on Christmas, you all can consider this my own little Christmas gift as a way of spreading good cheer. Let's see what our cloven hoofed heroines have in store for us!

School Daze

Remember when Celestia said that friendship was something that couldn't be taught in a school? Well, I guess the writers just kind of forgot about that and figured this was the next logical step in the show's progression. And I think it makes sense.

After answering the question on all of our minds of whether or not the movie was actually canon, which I think is wicked cool, Twilight realizes that friendship can't just be limited to Equestria. It's their responsibility to spread the magic as far as possible to those who aren't as fortunate. This actually addresses a major problem most people had with the film, that the ponies seemed kind of selfish in keeping all the magic to themselves. So I guess this is kind of like the ending of Black Panther... but with ponies.

So the episodes are about Twilight trying to get her school approved by Chancellor Neighsay, voiced by the legendary Maurice Lamarche. Neighsay is probably one of my favorite characters from this season. He's not so much a villain, but more of a bigoted douche. I think a character like this makes a lot of sense. Equestria has been so exclusively ponified for such a long time that it'd make sense to have a few nay-sayers- G** damn it I just realized what the writers did there. This is the horse drawn horse drawn carriages joke all over again. 

They don't try to make him sympathetic by giving him some forced tragic back story. Sometimes there are people who are pretty damn close minded. But I don't think his character would be nearly as memorable without Maurice's ridiculously wonderful voice. This man owns every scene he's in, even if he's a doing a chipmunk style Godfather impression.

The Student Six are pretty good additions themselves and serve as great surrogates to the other species we've been introduced to, and there's something so satisfying about nations putting aside their differences and standing as one whole unit. Seems like we could learn a thing or two from them.

My only problem isn't so much with the episode itself, but with the way it's treated. It honestly feels like the season completely forgot about what it was doing until about halfway through, and we'll see just how bad this will affect upcoming episodes. Such as...

The Maud Couple

Guess who f***ing called that Maud would get a boyfriend?! Though I'm still disappointed he's not voiced by Adam from Your Movie Sucks. This is a very split episode, and I myself am kind of in the middle.

As you all know, I fully believe Pinkie is #bestpony , so I did my absolute best to make sure I would put aside my bias and judge this episode on its own. So, did I find Pinkie's jealousy of Mud Briar to be annoying? Wellllll.... kind of, sort of, but not really.

I fully understand where she's coming from. It's like for the first time she's finally been given a window into how everypony else sees Maud. Maud found someone nearly identical to her in terms of personality (just trade rocks with sticks), and now Pinkie sees what her friends saw in Maud in her debut episode. So I can totally buy her being overprotective of Maud thinking this guy is no good for her.

What I do find annoying though is something that :iconemeraldoftheocean: brought up before in her Grizz and Pinkie Pie episode of Who's Better? She brought up the fact that Pinkie, the master of parties, should've known her sister well enough to recognize that she didn't like big loud parties. And yeah, that's a pretty big oversight of her character, even if it does seem really small.

Not knowing something like that may seem trivial, but with Pinkie Pie, that's a different story. Parties are her whole deal. Hell, she got a tramp stamp from being so good at throwing parties! And the episode Party Pooped went into even greater detail of how much time, effort, and passion she puts into knowing everypony well enough to make them, you guessed it, smile. Any pony that can befriend a gun slinging, fourth wall breaking maniac is a bad a** in my book.

That's why this small detail feels like such a huge insult to her character. Also, Mud Briar himself, while a good match for Maud, was honestly kind of boring. I know he's supposed to be boring, but unlike Maud, who has some of the funniest lines in the show, most of his are very tedious and not clever in the slightest. I'm just as annoyed as Pinkie Pie in that scene where he says technically over and over again. If you wanna see this character done better, then watch Sonic Boom. There's this beaver character that does Mud Briar's shtick except way better and more evenly spaced out. So, even though I didn't hate this episode, I don't need to see it again.

Fake It Til You Make It

Oh boy, this episode.

Mike: You've gotta say something nice about it.

Actually that's not too hard. In this episode, Fluttershy minds Rarity's boutique and tries out different personas to better approach her customers. And each time her personality changes, Andrea Libman does a fantastic job changing between roles. Though I would've preferred it if they pulled a Mimic Madness and had gone all out on the acting department by letting her do a demo reel worth of voices.

For reference, with each voice Andrea does in this episode, Tom Kenny probably did at least three or four. In fact, another thing Mimic Madness did was not only going all out with the characters, but with the insanity to which everything played out. Every time Spongebob played another character, the way the animation and story played out made it feel like he was actually changing his personality. MLP on the other hand just isn't as good at handling surrealism as Spongebob, so when Fluttershy lashed out at her raccoon friends, I just wasn't buying it. There was no sense of Fluttershy losing control. It just felt like her being a jerk. 

And it's not like in Putting Your Hoof Down where her anger is actually justified and tied to the story. Here it just felt like the writers were stretching, much to the detriment of her character. Andrea may be a funny gal, but she just couldn't save such a problematic story.

Grannies Gone Wild

Was that male alicorn on purpose? If so, then Alicorns are officially the new Super Saiyans. Something that was once special is now something everypony can do. When's my main pony Big Mac gonna get his wings?!

This episode is no better than the previous one. In fact, it is probably worse. You may recall in my Loud House review how I had to let off a bit of steam over Rainbow's laughably bad motivation in this episode. Why the Hell does she care so much about something as trivial as a roller-coaster? You know how Sonic has those levels where he rides a snowboard despite the fact that he'd go much faster on foot? When you go so fast that you break the sound barrier with ease, I have a hard time believing you'd be impressed by anything else.

But that's not the only thing I found off about this episode. I've heard people say that Applejack's ghost head was the best part of this episode and served as the reason for Dash ruining the gals' vacation. But the whole time I was thinking, "So what?" It's not like AJ is using some device to monitor their activities. She said if anything bad happened, Dash couldn't ride the roller-coaster. But she's not even with them! So why the Hell is Rainbow Dash so worried about the consequences of the ladies having fun?! Even if AJ did find out after the fact, Dash will have already been on that roller-coaster long beforehand. You know what they say. What happens in Las Pegasus, stays in Las Pegasus. Dashie apparently didn't get the memo, and comes off as an annoying idiot the whole time. 

At least the granny characters are kind of fun. Other than that, give this episode a skip. It's just a waste of time.

Surf and/or Turf

Let's go with this episode's philosophy and make a pros cons list.

Pro: Getting to see the hippogriffs and how they adapted to life after the Storm King's defeat was some damn intriguing world building. The idea of them finally moving back to their home on the lands or staying in the seas by choice instead of out of fear was really interesting.

Con: I'm not sure how I feel about the Cutie Map sending kids out all by themselves. Ever since Spike got called by the map, it feels even more like the logistics of this map is kind of awry. Though Twilight at least has the sense to chaperone them, so I'll let that one slide.

Pro: This could be one of the most mature episodes of the show. Not a lot of cartoons talk about the subject of divorce in such a meaningful way, and I feel like this subject should be talked about more. I myself am fortunate enough to have had the same pair of parents my whole life, but I can totally sympathize with those who do have to go through these changes. The wife and husband may be going through problems, but it's the kids that we really need to consider the feelings of.

Con: Sweetie and Scootaloo's arguing felt very petty and irresponsible. Like, you guys are seriously gonna end your friendship over a disagreement after all this time, while you're helping a kid whose parents got divorced? 

Pro: The final act, while it could be seen as a cop out to some, couldn't have ended better. It's important for kids to know that they don't have to choose sides. They're still your parents, ever if they're not married anymore. Hell, MLP did a good job of showing that just because couples divorce, that doesn't mean they hate each other. It just didn't work out and keeping the marriage going wouldn't have been healthy. They can still be friends. But most of all, it especially doesn't mean it's the child's fault. Nothing could be further from the truth.

So this episode, while somewhat bumpy, is pretty good overall. And even the argument, while out of nowhere, was at least entertaining thanks to the song.

Horse Play

Not a whole lot to say here except that this episode was a nice change of pace. One thing I noticed this season had been sorely lacking for a while was some solid comedy, something this series is well known for. But once Horse Play dropped, I finally had a reason to bust a gut.

Mike: Dude that's disgusting. Have you learned nothing from November?

NO NO! I said GUT! Not... never mind. The point is that this episode was very funny, and a lot of that comedy came from Celestia herself. 

I adore the direction they've taken her character in. In past episodes, there was kind of a disconnect between her and the main characters, almost like they were beneath her. But now, we've got her hanging out with the characters and interacting with her subjects a lot more and even showing a lot more personality beyond benevolent ruler, something I'm very impressed with Hasbro for letting the team go along with.

But more than anything, I could watch that cloud scene with Twilight apologizing to Celestia countless times. It's very well written and is very pleasing to the eye with the night time back drop. Oh yeah, this was also the episode where the writers finally remembered that the Student Six exist. Too bad their appearance amounted to nothing more than a cameo. What's this season's goal again?

The Parent Map

This episode is pretty good as well, unfortunately it's not quite as memorable as the others, including the bad ones.

Starlight and Sunburst's parents were pretty entertaining I guess, and when I found out Glimmer's dad is voiced by Justin from Total Drama, my mind was f***ing blown to bits.

But other than that, I can't really remember too much from this one, so let's move on.

Non Compete Clause

THIS one on the other hand I have plenty to talk about. Rainbow Dash and Applejack are competing for the award of teacher of the month. Kind of like that one episode- Jesus, not to immediately talk about Spongebob again, but they did this plot better too when Squidward and Spongebob competed for employee of the month.

There's one big factor that differentiates the two. When Spongebob and Squidward competed, they went to great lengths to psyche each other out, incapacitate each other, and do anything to impress Mr. Krabs. And through all this, they ended up doing a lot of damage to themselves, as well as to Mr. Krabs' business, who was really just manipulating them into doing better jobs. When Dash and AJ fought however, they were endangering the education and physical lives of freakin' kids.

Way to finally remember the whole school plot at the worst possible time. Not to mention whenever these two fight, it's more so annoying than funny. Even in Fall Weather Friends I found their competitiveness towards each other to be endearing because it was all in good fun. Here, we don't even get a scene at the end where they make up. It literally ends on the two of them bickering, and it honestly baffled me when I first saw it. I felt like I was watching an episode of The Loud House, and I'm sure you all know by now that that is not a compliment coming from me.

I'm at least glad that it didn't end with them getting the award for.... "showing what not to do when working together." Honestly, if the twist was that they were really just putting on an act the whole time, then the episode could've at least been rewatchable. As of now though, I wouldn't touch this one with a 7 and a half foot pole.

The Break Up Break Down

Save us Discord! This season needs your antics more than ever now. While we didn't get a joke about why he wasn't in Canterlot during the movie, I was still appreciative of his presence. Every time he comes on the show, it feels like an event. Especially since we don't get them too often.

And it's a good thing he was in this episode too, because it's about what you'd expect from the oh so popular misunderstanding romance plot. I'm sure Big Mac and Sugar Belle could be a very engaging couple. I just wish we could see them interact more with each other instead of focusing on Big Mac having trouble talking to her. Yeah, even when they're a couple, he still has a problem with communication.

I guess the explanation of what was going on with her was outlandish enough to the point where a misunderstanding was... well, understandable. But it doesn't do a whole lot beyond that, and I mostly just come back to this one for Discord. But even he isn't as funny as :iconirishhuskie2596:'s comment that the Mane Six were probably having an orgy during the events of this episode. Now THAT'S funny.

Molt Down

Out of all the episodes this season, Molt Down probably confuses me the most. I feel like I should be super excited to see Spike get his wings, but the lead up to it is just so weird. 

What was this episode trying to accomplish? Is molting meant to be puberty, a disease, or leaving the nest? If it's a disease, then why are we getting all of these obvious jokes about his changing voice and awkward blemishes? If it's puberty, then why do dragons kick other dragons out who go through this, and why doesn't Smolder tell Spike that this means he'll get wings? If it's about leaving the nest, then why isn't this focused on more until the very end of the episode?!

Because of how unfocused a lot of the comedy and story felt, I just didn't feel very much excitement when Spike got his wings. I mean, sure, I knew already he would get them. But I also knew beforehand Twilight got wings in Magical Mystery Cure, and I still find that moment to be incredible. 

Also the joke of Tabitha St. Germain yelling at the top of her lungs got old extremely quickly. It's like, "All right, I get it. She can't hear anyone. Please move on." So while it is nice to finally see Spike grow up, I just wish I could've gotten more out of it.

Marks For Effort

Boy, this is a really weird episode to rewatch after the whole School Raze debacle. But, I'll talk about that one soon enough. We get ourselves another Crusaders episode, and the Crusaders themselves realize, "Man, a school where you basically don't have to do any work sounds awesome! Way better than having to learn useless stuff like Calculus. Like, seriously, when are we ever gonna use that in real life?"

But of course, Twilight doesn't except them since there isn't a whole lot to teach them. Whatever it is that they're actually teaching at her school I would love to know more about, but I guess the writers couldn't really think of a whole lot of substance there when it comes to curriculum.

But then they meet Cozy Glow, and I have so many questions regarding this fascinating character that I just can't get into for now. So let's put a pin on that. In this episode at least, she's a pretty good character, even if she is a little ditzy. Like, how hard can it be to remember six words? I remembered the names of every Loud sister in less than a minute, and I don't even like that show!

When she fails her test on purpose to help the Crusaders get in, Twilight is surprisingly super b**chy towards the Crusaders thinking that they intentionally made Cozy flunk. Like, holy crap Twilight, cut these poor kids a break! Luckily after that we get a really nice scene of Starlight counseling Cozy, and it's really great seeing Starlight finally feeling like she has a purpose in this school. Sort of like when Twilight felt like she could do more than smile and wave. And plus we get this face.


Seeing the Crusaders deemed the school's tutors (hehe, toot) after that was a nice touch and felt like a solid compromise to let them in on the friendship. So while this episode didn't leave much of an impact, I'd say it's pretty decent. Even if I still find the inner workings of Twilight's school to be less then evolved. 

The Mean Six

Spoilers everybody. This is my least favorite episode of the season. And it had some very stiff competition after Non Compete Clause. And I really wish it didn't have to be this way, because the concept of this episode had a lot of potential. Seeing main characters interact and fight their darker selves can be a very interesting concept, and it was done really well in other media like Kid Icarus Uprising and Samurai Jack.

Well in this episode, our heroes never even figure out that there are evil versions of themselves roaming about. When I realized that this was the case, I got so confused. Why on Earth would the episode just skip over such an amazing opportunity?! Think of all the funny dialogue, think of all the drama that could arise from this. This could've been a really cool episode!

But no. Instead, we get Chrysalis monologuing to herself the entire plan (what normal person does that?), another episode where the conflict rests solely on misunderstandings, and probably one of the most out of nowhere grim dark deaths I've ever seen in a kid's cartoon. Like, this s*** does not fit in a My Little Pony cartoon!

And there's also a bunch of little things that add up. I have to agree with :iconyodajax10: that Spike not being invited on the trip is really freakin' weird. And why does Chrysalis not make an anti version of Starlight? Seems like that would at least be powerful. Why does nopony ever stop and think to themselves, "Man, it's really weird how character x came in, did some weird out of character things with not motivation, and then immediately came back completely unaware of anything that happened. It's also a little weird how their color palette and cutie mark is different. Kind of like that one time when we were all turned into evil versions of ourselves. You think maybe something off is going on behind our backs?"

But instead of anything remotely resembling a satisfying resolution, the girls just decide to pretend like nothing happened and move on. Even Chrysalis moves on without being discovered at all, making this entire episode, in the long run, completely and utterly pointless. Tell me, what of any substance was accomplished in this episode? It's not like the characters changed at all. They pretty much just said, "That was weird." And for the love of Pete, why didn't we get any interactions between the characters and their evil selves?! I'm still reeling at the amount of lost potential in this episode.

And it's because of that potential that The Mean Six is my least favorite episode from this season. I still dislike Cart Before the Ponies and Somepony to Watch Over Me more, but this one is certainly up there.

A Matter of Principals

No. NO! You cannot follow this episode up by giving me a BAD DISCORD EPISODE!!! As one of the few people who defends What About Discord?, I am beyond words when it comes to how this episode played out.

Discord was doing so well. He felt like he was truly developing and was starting to put others before his own needs. But now we've gotta ruin that by saying he's just so dang sad he wasn't invited to the school opening. Why does he care?! And why didn't he bring any of this up in the last episode he was in?!

With the way Discord was acting here, it felt like a serious case of one step forward and two steps back for him in terms of development. I still love the character, I still love John De Lancie's voice, I still think his episodes lead to some of the most creative visuals in the show, but I can't justify any of his actions here.

It's like watching a toddler with infinite powers throwing a tantrum. It is possible to make it work, such as with Lord Hater, but we're not exactly supposed to feel sorry for that character. He is best villain. Discord used to be best villain, but now he's reformed friend, and therefore must be held to different standards. At least the animation was fun. I swear though, if this next episode isn't great, I might just have to crap a castle from all of this disappointment!

The Hearth's Warming Club

FINALLY!!! Jesus, thank you so much! We finally finally got an episode focused on the students, characters that have been relegated to the background for the entire season so far. We finally have an episode to justify their existence, and it is a great episode!

The six students have to clean up the castle because someone among them caused a huge mess and ruined the decorations. But because the culprit won't confess, Twilight has no choice but to keep them all in school until the guilty party finally comes forward.

A lot of people complain that Twilight went too far with punishing everyone, saying it's unfair and all that to punish those who are innocent. And you're absolutely right, it is unfair. That's why it's so brilliant! What better way to make someone's guilt go up by making them a victim of peer pressure and so they can see how their actions are affecting those around them? It may be unfair, but the ends justify the means. After all, it does end up working. If she hadn't instated that punishment, then you-know-who wouldn't have come forward.

I know that must of you guys already know who did it, but I'd like to keep it a secret for those who don't know already, because the ending where we do find who and why is incredibly emotional and another great example of how well this show handles mature themes.

Most of the stories themselves are all pretty fun as well. I love the idea of characters sharing their own cultures with each other, and it really drives home the idea of how big a deal it is that our main characters have opened huge doors to different nations. Shout out to my man Sand Bar, whose story really hit home for me in the fact that it can be really hard to tell interesting stories sometimes when you have a relatively uneventful life. That s*** sucks, especially when everyone around you has something cool to say!

Friendship University

Well you've got opportunity, to change this mediocrity! He's Flim, he's Flam, they're the world famous Flim Flam Brothers! Here to save, this season, from being s******iiiit!

Aside form Discord, I can always count on these two con artists to show up and bring a good time with them. These two are honestly some of my favorite antagonists on the show. For every villain who has supernatural powers and wants to take over the world, it's a nice change of pace for our heroes to have to deal with really smart con ponies.

And this could honestly be one of their most brilliant schemes yet. Seeing as how Twilight got the ball rolling on introducing the concept of friendship to the world of education, it's only natural that they'd want to get in on the craze themselves.

But what I find particularly interesting about this episode is the fact that we get different characters interacting with Flim and Flam other than Applejack. Sure, they have history together, but it's nice to see how Flim and Flam manipulate our other heroes. I think that's the mark of a good, or at least versatile antagonist. They don't need to be tied down to just one hero. They can be nefarious with anyone!

Some of the jokes with Rarity pretending to be a teenager were pretty well done too, and Twilight's conflict of keeping her dignity was very poignant and engaging. While I still prefer their debut episode (topping that song is no easy feat), I still recommend this one!

The End in Friend

Here we have one of the more controversial episodes of the season. People were complaining about this episode from the premise alone in fact. An episode about two of the characters thinking they're not really friends feels more fit for a season 1 episode than an episode near the end of the series. After all, these girls have been through so much together, how could they not be friends?

But I think if any two ponies were to star in this premise it would have to be Rainbow Dash and Rarity. There is no better choice in my opinion. Out of all the characters in our roster, no two ponies could be more different. Rainbow Dash is like a little boy's justification for watching the show. "It may be a girly show, but there's this one character who's so freaking cool!" Rarity on the other hand only exists on the show because Hasbro demanded there to be a fashionista in the lineup. Let's all just be thankful we got her at all in the end. If Hasbro hadn't made the order, there'd be no Rarity, and if DHX wasn't passionate about good characters, then she'd probably be the most insufferable character, akin to something from G3. Like Rainbow Dash ironically.

So yeah, these two are perfect for the episode. But even then, some will argue that you have episodes like Sonic Rainboom and Rarity Investigates where these two have bonding experiences. I had this same doubt myself. However, this very problem is addressed in the episode itself. Yes, they had those two big episodes together. What else? Beyond that, these two have never been alone together or had any other episodes dedicated to just them. Realistically speaking, these two don't have much reason beyond knowing the same ponies to be friends. That's a good enough reason to justify this episode's existence.

As for the episode itself, it's pretty good. I'm much more tolerable of the arguing in this episode as it's between mainly the two of them, and it goes beyond just yelling. These two have conflicting personalities and interests that can easily get under the other's skin. It's not until Twilight puts them on a journey that the two of them realize their differences make them more similar to each other than they thought. The scenes with the two of them solving problems and working off each other's differences is a real treat and an excellent portrayal of why opposites attract in the first place. So count me in on the side that likes this episode!

Yakkity Sax

Damn it season 8! And you were doing so well too. Three good episodes in a row is almost consistent. But then we got yet another Pinkie Pie episode that completely misses the entire point of Pinkie's character.

I won't spend too much time on this one because we all know what's wrong with this already. One of Pinkie's defining character traits is how she puts the happiness of others above her own. In fact, she won't be happy until everypony she knows is smiling.

So then riddle me this Pinkie fans. Do you think Pinkie is the kind of character to get obsessed with an instrument (whose name I won't even attempt to type) despite the fact that she's not good at it, not be able to catch on to the fact that she sucks at it and those around her are having a bad time, and then get super depressed that she's not able to do this one thing really well? Not my Pinkie Pie.

What even was the message of this episode? It's okay to suck at something as long as you're passionate about it? I love watching fight scenes in movies, especially animated ones starring Spiderman. But that doesn't mean I'm gonna go out and get into a fight myself. I would get clobbered! Why? Because I can't fight! And Pinkie can't play... that instrument. And it's not like she's tone deaf either. Pinkie can play an entire polka medley all by herself and has a great singing voice. I still love my pink peppy party pony to death, but this episode, as well as the season as a whole, really needs to reevaluate what made Pinkie such a beloved character in the first place.

Road to Friendship

It's been a while since we've had an episode starring Starlight and Trixie. The last one I can remember was easily one of the worst episodes of the show, but luckily that fact wasn't really their fault, and the dumb Changeling responsible for that train wreck is nowhere to be found here.

Starlight and Trixie go on a road trip together so that more creatures can see Trixie's show. But as you can imagine, being in close quarters constantly leads to quite a bit of friction, and they get pretty sick of each other.

I think the reason the fighting here doesn't annoy me is because there's a natural progression in terms of how well they're getting along. Their journey begins with a pretty catchy musical number, and from then on we see a slow descent into conflict.

But the real stand out star of this episode has to be Hoo'Far. This guy is probably one of the most delightful characters on the show, and he's unlike any creature before him. Throughout the whole episode he remains calm and collected. Nothing gets under this guy's skin. When Trixie tries to get her wagon back from him by laying in the middle of the road, instead of going around her or getting angry, he just waits her out like a champ. Plus his design is pretty inspired, so I hope we get more of this guy later.

The Washouts

Damn, it's kind of hard to believe that it's been five seasons since we've had Lightning Dust, a pretty great antagonist who served as a subtle warning of what Rainbow Dash could've become if her ego went unchecked by her friends.

But now she's finally back, and she's apart of a group called the Washouts, all of whom dropped out of the Wonderbolts for not adhering to basic safety protocols. Despite this, Scootaloo is enamored with the dangerous stunts they do, and this worries Rainbow Dash to no end seeing as how she's her surrogate older sister.

One of the common complaints I've seen lobbed at this episode is that Rainbow Dash has a recession in character development in the way she treats Scootaloo like a little kid and is jealous of the idea that she's impressed by somepony other than herself. And at first, yeah, she does get somewhat nettled that this new group is stealing her thunder. No real news there. But once Dash gets a better idea of what the team does and becomes aware of how harmful it could be to Scootaloo's well being, it becomes pretty clear from there that she only has Scootaloo's best interests at heart.

I mean, she is still a little kid, and I honestly think it would've been irresponsible of Dash not to be incredibly over protective. I mean for God's sake, Scoots almost gets killed in this episode! Either that or she would've been forced to drink her food through a straw for the rest of her life. That scene by the way was pretty priceless and managed to make Spitfire actually pretty enjoyable for once.

Oh, and if this episode isn't solid confirmation that Scoots won't fly, I don't know what is. Having her fly now would probably be the biggest shark jump the show could do at this point, and it'd be a huge insult to her character and others with disabilities. But yeah, I super liked this episode, and I highly recommend it!

Rockhoof and a Hard Place

If there's one thing this season has done consistently (because let's face it, this season has been all over the place), it's do a good hob of bringing back familiar faces to show us what they've been up to after all this time. I myself was very curious to see how the Pillars were doing in the modern era.

The concept of a character being thrust into a time unfamiliar to them has a lot of potential for interesting character development and drama. One of my favorite scenes from Austin Powers was when he discovered how many of his friends had died while he was frozen and how out of place he truly is in the future. It was very sad and a surprisingly human moment from an otherwise outlandish film.

In this episode, we got that drama and then some. Out of all the Pillars, Rockhoof appears to be having the most trouble adapting to life in Equestria. There's no real place for hulking warriors such as himself anymore, all the other Pillars have adapted to their new lives extremely well, and worst of all, he can't even sail properly anymore because of how much the stars have changed. It's super disheartening seeing the turmoil this poor guy goes through, and it's especially heart breaking to hear that he'd be better off turned to stone. If the episode had actually gone all the way with that then I'd probably have a serious existential crisis over a show about color palette horses.

Fortunately, thanks to a speech from Yona about why Rockhoof is such a great hero, Twilight figures out that Rockhoof's place is to serve as a bridge between the past and present, and I think this is a fantastic resolution. Stories are a vital part of our history, because they make the past engaging and give people a reason to carry that history on. Let's just be glad we didn't have to deal with another Cockatrice situation.


Oh God she's dead!
Mike: Or maybe she's just stoned ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

What Lies Beneath

Heck yes! Another Student Six episode! It's almost like the writers got some kind of wake up call in the middle of the season and remembered, "Oh yeah, this season has a specific theme that we've kind of been ignoring. Maybe we should get back to it."

In this episode, the Student Six pretty much have their own version of the Mane Six's trials way back in the pilot. Except instead of them facing challenges based on their elements, they must help each other conquer their worst fears.

This episode is creative, visually engaging, the voice acting is some of the best I've seen from these characters, and it's another great showcase of how even when we're from different cultures, the only barrier that exists between us and working together is self made.

I really wish I can talk about Cozy Glow now, but I've just gotta be patient and keep going.

Sounds of Silence

Here we are. The one episode of the season that has been thoroughly lauded as a masterpiece. And surprise surprise, I'm right there with you guys.

Here we have yet another species introduced to the show based on real life mythology, the Kirin. We get another Applejack and Fluttershy pairing for this episode. You guys know how one of the biggest complaints of the movie was that AJ and Fluttershy got shafted? Well, who knows, maybe this episode was meant as some form of apology by putting the two of them in easily their most fantastic and creative episode.

They travel to the Peaks of Peril to find that the Kirin show no emotion and don't even speak a word. All of them except for one named Autumn Blaze. She explains to AJ that the Kirin once had an argument that caused them to turn into angry fiery versions of themselves called Nirik (that name is not clever). So they bathed in a stream that essentially neutered their emotions, almost like a mandatory vow of silence.

I was getting some major Inside Out vibes from this episode once I learned what they were going for. And while this episode doesn't get as complex as Inside Out (which is understandable, they don't have as much time), they still get the message across of how one emotion can't exist without the other.

It is very easy to get heated in an argument or just in general, especially in the technological age we reside in now. That's why the message of controlling your anger without compromising the rest of your emotions is so damn important, and it's probably why so many of us on the internet love this episode.

But the real factor that won me over was Rachel Bloom's performance as Autumn Blaze. I've seen her before occasionally when my sister was watching Crazy Ex Girlfriend, and just like in that show she has an incredible singing voice here. A Kirin Tale in particular had some great lines that really hit me where I live. Imagine how boring life would be if we didn't laugh just because it hurts a little? So is this my favorite episode of the season? Well.... we'll see.

Father Knows Beast

Don't worry, it's not this episode. This episode is hot garbage. But luckily it's the kind of garbage I'd expect from a more consistent episode of the series. Because of the way it's been sandwiched by such good episodes as opposed to littering the very beginning of the season, which was so bad and inconsistent with quality that :iconirishhuskie2596: had to give up on the show and even animation in general.

Does that make this episode better? Not really, but it at least cushions the blow. Sludge is not a very interesting character, and I don't know why they had to go with the twist that he isn't really Spike's dad. I don't consider this fact a spoiler since it is so damn telegraphed that you would have to be a novice to story telling not to immediately figure out that this guy is a fraud.

Episodes like this and Dragon Quest feel like such a c*** tease. We want to know more about Spike's past. We'd like to meet his parents and find out where he came from! Stop insulting us with these episodes. Even Spike is out of character here. There's one scene where he's surprisingly really harsh towards Twilight just for being a little worried about Sludge. Like holy crap dude, what's wrong with you?! I know she didn't invite you on that camping trip but... actually never mind. I'd say this makes you two even for now.

Let's just hope we get something.... Hell, ANYTHING next season that elaborates on Spike's past. Please!

School Raze

To finally end this chaotic season off, we get School Raze. An episode that might have one of the most bat s*** insane out of nowhere villains I've ever seen. Did anyone guess that Cozy Glow of all characters would be this season's big baddie? I love how the writers intentionally threw us off by saying Tirek would return this season. This made us believe that he would be the ultimate bad guy. But no! He's mostly just a glorified pawn in Cozy's game.

Remember all those episodes where she was really nice and innocent? Yeah, apparently all of that was an act from the start, and she's one of the first characters to realize they live in a world where friendship can be weaponized. I know this sounds ridiculous on paper, but it just works because of the universe we're in. This is the same world where friendship lasers exist. I'm honestly shocked that so many people found a concept like this too silly in a show literally titled Friendship is Magic.

Even though I have no idea where Cozy came from or even if she has parents for that matter, she's probably one of the best villains this show has given us. Not only does she go all out when it comes to presentation and being intimidating (which you kind of need to do when you're just a little kid), but she's also very good at manipulating others. She's smart enough to trick Tirek, Neighsay, and even Twilight and co. All of these characters have proven to be at least competent, so I'm very impressed with the little girl.

And if you're as tired as me of villain reformations, then this episode apparently listened. In a world where giant bug queens and communist leaders are given a chance of forgiveness, little girls get sent straight to Hell. HAHA! *sigh* The politics of this universe are so strange ^^

The conflict here is also incredibly tense, seeing as how important magic is to Equestria. And it's also nice to see Chancellor Neighsay turn around after seeing the compassion of other species first hoof. It feels like a natural progression of his character that's well earned and when Maurice delivers the line, "But why?" it feels like his entire world view has been genuinely turned on its heel.

I guess if I had to have a  nit pick, it'd be that I'm not a huge fan of the design of Tartarus. I feel like they could've gotten much more creative with the visuals, but instead it's really just a bunch of animals in cages. But other than that, this felt like a great note end off an otherwise flawed song.

So how would I rank these episodes? *inhale* Here we go.

24. The Mean 6
23. Non-Compete Clause
22. Yakity-Sax
21. Fake It 'Til You Make It
20. Grannies Gone Wild
19. The Maud Couple
18. A Matter of Principals
17. Father Knows Beast
16. The Parent Map
15. Molt Down
14. Marks For Effort
13. The Break Up Breakdown
12. Surf and/or Turf
11. Road to Friendship
10. A Rockhoof and a Hard Place
9. The Hearth's Warming Club
8. Friendship University
7. The End in Friend 
6. School Daze
5. What Lies Beneath
4. School Raze
3. The Washouts
2. Horse Play
1. Sounds of Silence

*exhale* I guess that number one wasn't too surprising after all.

But thank you all for reading this far into the journal! Let me know what your favorite and least favorite episodes are in the comments. Until next time...

Mike: Wait a minute, you're gonna go this whole time without even mentioning Best Gift Ever?

Oh yeah, I guess you're right.

Mike:... Well?

Still haven't seen it! 

Since today's Christmas, instead my usual outro, here's something a little more special from me to you guys that I hope you all enjoy.


  • Listening to: Ninja Sex Party
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: Voltron
  • Playing: Smash Bros Ultimate
  • Eating: Ham
  • Drinking: Water
Hallelujah and greetings everybody! You may be wondering why I'm acting particularly jovial and religious right now considering the fact that I'm usually a depressed iconoclastic atheist. Well my friends, that is because I have survived my dreaded finals and conquered my first quarter of college. They say the first is always the hardest, and I freaking made it!

So in celebration of the fact that I'm not dead, I think it's time I talk about some more cartoons before I put my nose back to the grind and inevitably finish that daunting Weirdmaggedon review. Don't worry, it's coming in due time everybody. Just you wait.

Spirited Away

You know, I realized something. I've been talking about DreamWorks way too often on this series. Seriously, every single episode I've covered at least one film, maybe even two. I guess it's because I've used this series as an excuse to catch up on all the movies I had missed, and I just so happened to miss a LOT of DW movies.

So let's switch things up by focusing on another super popular animation company. Studio Ghibli, one of the most beloved animation departments this side of Disney. I've actually never seen one of these movies before, so why don't I check out Spirited Away? Everyone says this movie is a masterpiece, so maybe I-

*two hours later*

*sucks teeth* Welp, I can now say that I've finally seen a Studio Ghibli film. I can now also say that I never have to see one ever again. Did I not like Spirited Away? Of course not. It's a beautiful movie with creative visuals, memorable characters, and a delightfully weird setting. I can see why so many people love this movie, and I have tons of respect for it. 

But as we've seen with my Adventure Time review, respect doesn't necessarily equate to love. (Yes I've seen the finale. I'll talk about that later.) The reason I don't find myself getting into Spirited Away is the exact same reason why I've only ever seen four anime in my life. Yup, it's that cultural divide issue coming back to haunt me.

I'm not here to bash Spirited Away in the slightest because all of my issues with it are entirely a me problem with anime in general. It's just not as appealing to me when compared to Western works. Sure, the art style is almost always beautiful, but I find it jarring how stilted a lot of the movements are. The way characters walk and talk just rubs my subconscious the wrong way in a serious manner. Something just doesn't feel right about it, and it tends to take me out of the experience. One of my favorite aspects of animation is seeing characters zip around at a fast pace, capable of doing things much more complex than live action. But every time someone so much as runs in this movie it feels like they're trudging through molasses.

Sure, South Park has stilted animation, but at least the art style actually reflects that movement. Another thing that I find odd is how long and drawn out a lot of scenes can be. This can be done by characters lingering around for too long or having conversations that are very weirdly drawn out. I wish I had a better example of what I'm talking about, but it's so hard for me to translate to you guys how empty and unsatisfied I felt watching this film.

I don't know if I'll be checking out any other Ghibli films, especially considering this is considered one of their best works. I wanted to be one of the millions of critics who came to praise this film, but sadly, I had to be the one who said I recommend to you guys, but I wouldn't recommend it to myself. So for my actual score, I'll be fair by being objective while also keeping in mind the fact that I'm an impatient Aspbergers patient who can't sit still during that boring train scene. And I'm giving this film an 8 out of 10. Believe me when I say I actually considered giving a lower score.

Despicable Me 3

RB'sB: Well if you hate Ghibli so much why don't you stick to a movie studio more suited to your obvious IQ level.

Well maybe I would if that same studio didn't put out films that are essentially glorified fan fictions. Gru and Lucy recently lost their jobs for failing to capture the notorious Balthazar Bratt who, despite being the best character in the movie, is yet another "lol, aren't the 80's just so crazy?!" running gag that has already been done to death by Robot Chicken. And Gru finds out that he has a... *sigh*.... long lost twin broth- I'm sorry, I can't read this plot anymore. This is just way too stupid!

This is the movie that made me realize, "Wow, people will really watch anything with Minions in it won't they?" I mean, don't get me wrong, I love those guys, but these movies' plots are getting more insane by the minute. So why does it feel so right in action?!?!

RB'sB: Excuse me? Please don't say what I think you're about to.

As stupid and obvious as this movie's plot is... it actually kind of f***ing works. I know, seriously?! Why is this you may ask? Well, weirdly enough, I think it might be because of the characters. No, not Dru, we'll get to him in a minute, but one thing that's always been consistently great about these movies is the family aspect of it all. Gru has come a long way since the first movie where he straight up dreamed of sending his daughters away in an exploding rollercoaster. This time, he's a loving father with a fun wife and some pretty great kids. #EdithIsTheBest Though their own sub plot of finding a unicorn could've been easily cut from the story.

The Minions get their own sub plot this time, and it's honestly what the Minions movie should've been. The idea that they'd still want to be evil makes a lot of sense. After all, they were born to serve the baddest dude. It makes sense that they'd want to start a little rebellion and go off on their own. By the way, that jail scene is still very funny to me. I'm pretty sure I'd be scared of a gang of Minions too.

As I've said before, Mr. Bratt is the best character here, and I think that's helped a lot by Trey Parker's awesome performance. The fact that Trey is even here is still baffling to me. Not only is he working on something that isn't South Park, but he's also a voice actor starring in a mainstream animated movie. Also also, he's not just a voice actor who happened to get a role, he's also one of the main selling points in the trailer! I may never know how this miracle ever came to be, but I quite frankly don't need to. It's just so wonderful :love:

However, I can't praise every aspect of this film. Dru, also voiced by Steve Carrel, makes me feel like Gru in this scene.



Maybe it's the voice. Steve Carrel does the voice for both of our main characters, a move which must've saved a lot of money on voice acting. While I can certainly respect the intentions behind this move, in execution it falls flat on its face. I've always loved Steve's take on Gru. It sounds nothing like his normal voice, and despite being silly is a rather convincing accent. It's very similar to Mike Myers' take on Shrek in fact. But for Dru, I guess all he was really told to do in order to differentiate the characters was just to simply do a higher much more ear grating version of the exact same voice. So not only does it not sound very different from Gru, it also sounds worse and is a bad reflection of what Mr. Carrel is capable of. Wouldn't it have made more sense for him to use his normal voice? Seems to me like that'd be WAY more interesting as well as entertaining.

Maybe it's the design. People love to rag on how lazy Illumination can be, and nowhere is that more obvious than the way they do character models. Let's just make Gru again except he has white clothes on. Slap some hair on there while you're at it. I've never liked this design philosophy with twin characters in general. There seems to be this weird notion that twins are either exactly the same or polar opposites. At least the latter, while obvious, is more interesting than just seeing literal clones on screen.

Maybe its his intentions. Dru is the equivalent of a man who convinces a guy that's been off of drinking for years to go back to being an alcoholic no matter the consequences that could arise towards him or the ones he loves. So when Dru feels betrayed for having been "used," I honestly don't feel any sympathy for him despite the fact that I'm probably supposed to.

Maybe its his actions. Dru is one of my favorite kinds of characters. The idiot who's only purpose is to mess things up for the competent characters just to make the plot last longer than it reasonably should. All he had to do was stay in the boat and be the getaway driver, and he couldn't even do that right. The writers tried to justify Dru's actions by making being the getaway driver look super dull and boring, but this film also came out the exact same day as Baby Driver, a film starring a getaway driver. And to this day it's still considered one of the most exciting action films audiences have ever seen. A bit of an unfortunate coincidence there.

So yeah, even though Dru brings this film down quite a bit, he doesn't quite kill it. And hey, the cliffhanger they leave off on honestly looks really promising and could even make for an interesting TV show. Oh well, I guess we'll see what the future holds for Illumination's little brainchild. And based on those box office numbers, it's not going anywhere, anytime soon. And I'm giving this film a 7.5 out of 10.

The Peanuts Movie

Peanuts is a very interesting franchise for me. Even as a kid, I can't say I've ever gotten into it as much as others, and I was more into shows like Spongebob and Arthur. Peanuts just felt too slow, it wasn't as surreal as I liked, and I never got why Charlie Brown had to constantly be shat upon by the world.

But from the moment I simply looked at an image from this movie, I thought it looked extremely promising. Heck, this is one of :iconloudcartoonist99:'s favorite animated movies ever, so that's gotta mean something. Of course, this is also the same person who is in love with the Peanuts franchise as a whole, so how would this movie hold up for an outsider like myself?

I think the biggest thing to note is how beautiful and unique the animation is. Captain Underpants, Into the Spider Verse, Detective Pikachu, and this film are all living, breathing proof that CGI doesn't all have to look the same. What's really impressive in this case though is how it's able to capture the feel of the original works while also bringing its own unique flare to make it look worthy of a theatrical release. So that's one of my problems taken care of.

I'm pretty sure one of the most common complaints lobbed at this movie is how the Snoopy sub plot is pointless and is mostly a distraction. While that is in fact absolutely true, this is one of the best kinds of distractions! Every time we shift back to Snoopy, the film takes on a completely different tone and style. All the flying battles are stunning, with some wicked cinematography as well as impressive sound design. The music also plays a big part in making these scenes feel so grand. Should it have been cut? Probably. Would I cut it if I had the choice? Never.

Besides, it's not like it has much to interrupt anyway. While there is an ongoing arc about Charlie trying to find the courage to talk to the new girl, a lot of the story feels incredibly disjointed. Charlie Brown does a thing. He's surprisingly really good at it. Lucy is annoyed by this. Something happens causing Charlie to move on and mope. Rinse, lather some Snoopy, and repeat.

But by the end of the movie, it all finally started to make sense to me. The speech that the red haired girl ga- wait a minute? She doesn't have a name?! We're seriously going the Beast route by not saying what the character's actual name is? *sigh* Fine, whatever. I'm being positive here anyway. Her speech at the end put everything into perspective. All the events were interconnected in a way to show off what an awesome guy Charlie Brown is despite how much he constantly fails. And seeing all the kids lift Charlie in the air and that smile in his face put a smile on my own as well.

So yeah, I think this movie is pretty great! Even if it is a little light on plot. Also, mad props for getting a cast made up entirely of children. That's a very rare sight these days. In fact, I don't even think this film had any celebrities. Sure Kristin Chenoweth was here, but all she did was some grunts, and not even that many. I guess Blue Sky just got her do some as a favor after recording for Rio 2 or something. And I'm giving this film an 8.5 out of 10.



Next Gen

Oh yeah, that's right. Netflix has animated movies too. I guess I should talk about their version of Big Hero 6.

Okay, I know it's not a carbon copy, but if you asked me to describe this plot, I'd say it's Big Hero 6 starring a female Shadow the Hedgehog. Might as well call this film Next Edge, because it wants you to know how edgy and cool it is. From the very beginning, right when the opening credits opened up with the punk rock music, I thought, "Oh no, it's going to be that kind of movie?" Oh joy of joys. 

So, what voice actress will they be getting to voice our super cool and edgy main character? Well... does anyone here find the Rubies from Steven Universe to  be threatening in the slightest? If you said anything other than, "How could I? Charlyne Yi's voice is too high and adorable," then congratulations, you're stuck with Chloe from We Bare Bears going through a Green Day phase. (btw, I actually like Green Day)

My God really? I never thought I'd be so irked to see a voice actress in a lead role. I mean, I guess it kind of makes sense given her age, and it's not like I'm supposed to be threatened by her. But Yi's voice just doesn't fit this kind of character in the slightest. Bubbles sounds more hardcore than her! But yeah, this movie stars Alice Fef- I-I mean Mai Su as a disillusioned teenager whose dad left her and her mom. I have to say, the opening scene where this happens is very weirdly paced. We see her as a kid playing with her dog, her dad fights with her mom and promptly leaves, she looks kinda sad, and then almost immediately goes punk rock on us, complete with blue hair dye and everything. I mean, you can't be punk rock without the colored hair. It's essentially consummation.

Like Frozen, the reason for our main character's loneliness feels very manufactured and forced. Except replace parents who translate "Fear is your enemy" as "Conceal don't feel," with one parent who copes with the loss of her husband by becoming obsessed with robots and completely ignoring her only daughter, as well as those stock bully characters that are just..... just. Peachy. Basically all of this was written to give Mai a reason to hate robots, even though it really didn't need to be so damn premeditated. 

The mom and Mai go to a technology convention that's very clearly trying to be like Apple, down to the over hype, products that are essentially just updated versions of older more affordable ones, and a trendy spokesperson complete with a man bun and Angry Bird voice. Though in all seriousness, I do like Jason Sudeikis in this role. He's very good at delivering a lot of the passive aggressive remarks and is very charismatic. Though not quite as good as Jacksfilms.



But when Mai sneaks away, she finds a robot developed by Dr. Rice. He's voiced by David Cross, who also voices every single Q-bot, yet another casting decision that makes me really really want to like this movie.

Let me guess, she and the robot become best buds and go on a journey of self discovery together?

*actual line from the movie*

Mai: We hang out, become best buds, take on the world, share a deep and moving journey of discovery together?

Hey, that's what I was saying! Just because you guessed what a critic would think of your film's predictability does not mean you're being clever nor subversive! But you know what? That's exactly what our two characters do, minus the friendship part though.

This film may want me to believe that these two are as close as a little boy and his iron giant (still haven't seen that movie), but I'm sadly not convinced. The "friendship" between these two is incredibly one sided and extremely conditional. Take for example their meeting. This robot, or 7723, has come all this way just to give Mai her backpack back. However, she still wants nothing to do with robots and asks him to leave. It isn't until 7723 shows off his destructive capabilities that Mai's interests have been peaked. She now sees 7723 as an opportunity to get back at her bullies and "have some fun."

So yeah, 7723 is not a friend, but more so a tool for Mai's twisted revenge schemes. But I'm sure that a friendship will at least start to develop right? I mean, this robot has already done so much for her, including getting back at her bullies, as well as causing exorbitant amounts of property damage. Let's see what happens when 7723 wants to do something for a change.

7723: - Mai, I was thinking. Well, maybe you and me, maybe we could play a game today. You need to teach me. Maybe not baseball, probably, but... soccer or something? Something like that.

Mai: Why?

7723: Oh, I just mean. What if... we do one day where we don't, you know, blow stuff up.

Mai: Aren't you having a good time? I thought we were having a good time just hanging out.

7723: No, no, we are. Are you kidding? It's the best. I really like hanging out. It's been great, I have lots of cool memories now - of us hanging out.

Mai: Okay, so why do you want to bail?

7723: I don't!

Mai: Because we can't quit now. There's way to much injustice in the world. Like, together we can fix it. So, nobody has to get hurt ever again.

7723: I would never let you get hurt.

Mai: Well, there you go. See?



Ladies and gentlemen, that is what we generally refer to as emotional manipulation. There is nothing charming nor endearing about it. It's not like 7723 said he didn't want to hang out anymore, he just wanted to do something that wasn't violent, and because his wants were nowhere in her agenda, Mai decided that she needed to get her "friend" back on her side. 

I know that characters don't need to be likable all the time, heck, I love stuff like The Grinch and Emperor's New Groove as much as the next guy. But there's only so much spiteful behavior you can throw in before an overload. Not to mention how important it is to keep these jerks charismatic and interesting the whole time as well. Mai is not really either of these things. 7723 is the first being to finally show her care and affection after years of solitude, and she constantly treats him like garbage. You could argue that it's because she hates robots and that she's afraid to open up to people after her father left I guess, but the film doesn't really do enough to develop this plot line.

If you wanna see this kind of relationship done right, look no further than Treasure Planet. Jim Hawkins and Long John Silver have a similar situation to Mai and 7723. Except in Jim's case, he's much more regretful of his actions and hates disappointing his mother (one who actually gives a crap about him by the way). He only does illegal things because he has no outlet and has had trouble growing up properly without a father figure. This is where Captain Silver comes in. Their relationship starts out rocky, but as time goes on, they start to have a better understanding of each other and bring out each other's best qualities. Their relationship goes beyond friendship. Silver is like the father that Jim desperately needed as a child, and it leads to some of the best written scenes in the film.



Here though, it doesn't feel like they put enough of a focus on this part of her life. You remember how quick and weirdly paced that opening scene was? That was supposed to be the entire justification for why Mai is such a brat. After seeing this movie, my problems with Star Butterfly feel quaint in comparison.

Oh damn, I'm spending way too much time on this one. I'd better skip to the climax. Mai's mother gets kidnapped (I don't care), she gets angry at 7723 for disabling his weapons despite the fact that he would've reset had he not (I don't care), they break into Justin Pin's office after finding out he's a robot (I still don't care), and then Dr. Rice gets vaporized. I still d- WAIT, WHAT?! Holy s***, they just straight up kill him? Not only that, nobody seems to care. They just move on nearly immediately. I know he wasn't the most prevalent character, but he's the man who created 7723, the only thing that could stop Ares, Justin's robotic side. They could've at least given him a more respectful send off. Sure, Dr. Schultz dies pretty suddenly in Django Unchained, but we still get that gut wrenching scene where Django pays his respects to the man who granted him freedom. We get nothing like that here.

Also the bully character comes back and is a good guy now?

Bully: 
Mai, I'm sorry about what happened. Okay? I didn't mean to hurt you or anybody.

How the Hell does that make any sense? There's a scene where she uses her robots to hold Mai down just so she can beat the crap out of her. And you're telling me she didn't mean to hurt anyone? I guess it's meant to teach kids the good lesson of, "You can make anyone your friend as long as you threaten them with the kind of harsh violence that only a school shooter could relate to."

The mother also tries to get apologies in as well, but it's essentially the equivalent of Buck Cluck helping his son at the end of Chicken Little. Too little, too late I'm afraid.

One last thing before I wrap this up. 7723's big arc is that his memory is in constant threat of filling up. The only way to fix it is with a full reset, but then he'll lose all of his memories permanently and essentially start anew. This is also the only way for him to get his weapons back and properly defend the city from Ares. While this has the potential to be very dramatic, there's one pretty major problem. He's only been sentient for a couple of days!

I know I'm sounding harsh, but it's not like it's gonna take him that long to catch up on all the "wonderful memories." Hell, the film ends exactly like this, despite one scene earlier where Mai is crying that 7723 is back to his factory setting. It's really not that big a deal objectively speaking, and the whole time I was just waiting for him to do the reset, leading to a climax pretty light on tension.

Again, if you wanna see this kind of thing done better, look no further than Gravity Falls. Actually, since it's in the episode I'm gonna review soon, I'll just wait until then to go further on details. To put it simply, the character I'm talking about there had WAY more memories to lose.

You know, it's funny that my review for this film turned out so long, because it's honestly not that bad. It's just that I have a lot more problems to talk about than usual. Overall, if you're more forgiving than me and can even relate to Mai's predicament, I could see you liking this movie fine. Just know that Michael Pena is a dog and is pretty much cursing freely in a movie made for kids. And even though it's censored, it's just as obvious that he's saying f*** as it is that I just did right there. Welcome to Netflix kids! And I'm giving this film a 4.5 out of 10.



Dick Figures the Movie

So I didn't like Netflix, Studio Ghibli wasn't my cup of tea, and the other movies were good, but I wouldn't see myself watching them a second time. What could possibly be the one movie to come out on top? .....Why not a movie about stick figures?

That's right folks, for my ultimate recommendation this episode, we're taking a trip to the internet to a movie adaptation of one of the most popular cartoons online. Dick Figures, created by Ed Skudder and Zach Weller, is an adult show about two roommates that just kind of do whatever. It's funny, well animated, and the two creators even have impressive voice acting skills. Ed even want on to develop Unikitty!, so these two clearly have a lot of talent.

Despite the series being light on plot, they managed to create a feature length story anyway after an impressive Kickstarter campaign that raised over $300,000. The film stars Red and Blue, the latter of whom promised his girlfriend Pink that he'd get her the best birthday present ever, despite not actually having one. After getting directions from Raccoon-San (I am definitely naming my dog that), he and Red go on a journey around the globe to collect all three pieces of a sacred sword that Raccoon used to defeat Lord Takagami and his undead army. It's a race against the reawakened Lord and his army to retrieve all three pieces while learning what it means to be best friends.

For this entry, I'd like to keep things brief and cut to the chase of why I love this film so f***ing much. The animation and action. After watching a video from Robobuddies on Steven Universe, I became interesting in checking this film out when she cited it as an example of how to do exciting action scenes. Let me tell ya, she was not kidding in the slightest!

It's so inspiring to see how much this film does with so little resources. Sure, on the surface it looks ridiculously cheap, but once you see what these characters in motion can do you'll understand what I'm talking about. Stick figure animations in general tend to be quite surprising in how complex they can be while keeping as basic of a design as you can get. The simple bodies lend themselves so seamlessly to fast paced, break neck action. And because this film has a higher budget than your average internet video, there's a lot more versatility in the way they present these characters.

Seeing Fox only, no items, Final Destination fights can be exciting the first few times, but without any variations on the context or the setting it can get stale very quick. So with Dick Figures, the animators find fun and creative ways to utilize environments to their fullest potential; big examples being the playground scene, the dock scene, and the Paris pursuit scene. I could watch these set pieces for hours on end and never get bored.

I normally don't show clips from the films I review so that you can experience it yourself, but f*** it, here's a tiny taste anyway!



And hey, the story and characters aren't half bad too. When it comes to voice acting, everyone is distinct and memorable, especially Lord Tourettes, who has one of the funniest voices I've ever heard. They've even got Eric Bauza in on the action, whom you may know as Tigerclaw, Puss in Boots, Marvin the Martian, and to a much lesser extent Woody Woodpecker.

The only character I could see getting on people's nerves is Red, who at times can go a bit too far with his indifference towards Blue. But there are a few reasons why I don't think he ruined my experience. For starters, he is far from incompetent, and most of the best action shots come from him. He's also presented as more clueless than an idiot, and by the end of the film he learns how to show true empathy towards Blue while even saving his life. And unlike Mai, he's actually pretty entertaining and has a lot more to work with in terms of personality. Plus, if he ever starts to get too annoying, the film makers hold him back by giving him some ridiculously satisfying comeuppances. The ending of Peanuts may have put a satisfied smile on my face, but the lobster scene from this film gave me a devious smile instead.

You don't even need to be an avid watcher of the show to get a kick out of it. So yeah, I couldn't recommend this one enough! And I'm giving this film a 9.5 out of 10.

Man that movie was great! I wonder what song they're gonna use for the end credits.



Mike: Hey Carrick, I just got back from a pretty f***ed up trip to the- holy crap!

Me: *frothing at the mouth*

Mike: I guess he just couldn't handle that level of fan boy hype. Oh well, thanks for reading this journal everyone, and tune in next time everybody to the thrilling conclusion of Weirdmaggedon! If Carrick is alive by then.

Me: BLARGH!


  • Listening to: Smash Ultimate Music
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: Rise of the TMNT
  • Playing: Kirby Planet Robobot
  • Eating: Sloppy Joe
  • Drinking: Water
Hi there! If you're reading this journal, then let me be the first to say 'Congratulations!' You've decided that you want to create your very own horror film. But not just any horror movie. You specifically want to tackle one of the most elusive and iconic versions of them all, the slasher film!

'But what is a good slasher film?' you may ask. Well, despite what many say, creating one of these movies is surprisingly not too complicated! All it takes is some talent, nerve, a little elbow grease, and these easy steps that must be taken to create the perfect slasher movie.

Step 1: The Setting

Nothing quite collects the scares like an eerie and terrifying playground for your characters to run around in. There are actually quite a lot of settings to choose from. And by that, I mean two. Suburbia, and the woods.

If you wish to go down the suburbia route, you may find some of the logistics rather tricky to get around. For example, with all the houses scattered around, how come nobody ever sees your slasher going about their business killing people? Or why haven't the police been called? And better yet, if the film is set around Halloween, as most tend to be, why aren't there any kids around? 

Here's what you do. With the first problem, simply have everyone in the town be stupid or a jerk. Is somebody banging on your door calling for help? Eh, probably just a prankster. Besides, Wheel of Fortune is on, and they're about to do the Final Spin! As for the police, you can refer to the previous solution by having no one care enough to call the police, and if you really wanna go the extra mile, just have the police suck at their jobs by not caring about what anyone says or just be stupid enough to get killed by the slasher anyway despite being armed.

The last problem is the easiest. Have your movie take place at night. Sure, murder is kind of shocking at day, but once the lights are turned off then every audience member will have wished they brought their brown pants. So the next time someone is about to kill you, just wait until sunrise for them to go back into hibernation.

If you chose the woods for your setting, then a lot of those problems are much easier to deal with. There's no reception in the woods, there's barely any people, and there's also the added fear of getting lost. Of course this also begs the question of how come the slasher never gets lost or what they do when there or no fleshies to exterminate, but odds are they've got nothing better to do.

Step 2: The "Protagonists"

You may be wondering why I put protagonists in quotes. Well that's because I use the term in the loosest sense possible, because let's face it. People aren't coming to your movie for memorable characters or impactful dialogue. Nope! It's all about those amazing kills that we're too afraid to admit are the best parts about these movies in fear of being called a psychopath. But in the mean time, you obviously can't just have a full movie with nothing but killing. Gotta fill up that run time somehow.

So here's what you do. Make most of your cast a bunch of teenagers, and then have them talk about sex. You'd think they'd have something else to talk about like school, sports, their careers, but we're dealing with teenagers, and we all know how horny them teenagers are! Just look at other brilliant documentaries about teen life such as American Pie or Big Mouth. They seem pretty accurate.

Your teens will be talking about sex a lot. Who to have sex with, who they're currently having sex with, and how much of a loser X character is for being a virgin. Well guess who will be laughing when the only character alive is said virgin? The answer is probably no one since said character will be seriously traumatized and the killer more often than not doesn't talk, or laugh.

But there are also adults in this world too. The most trustworthy archetypes to use include overprotective parent, parent who doesn't give a crap about their kid, parent who is overprotective while at the same time putting their kids in danger, and my personal favorite, the guy who gives ominous warnings and is deemed crazy by every other character. Well guess who will be laughing when all those people die when they didn't heed the crazy guy's warnings? The answer is the crazy guy. Because he's f***ing crazy. He just got lucky this one time is all. Can someone please get Crazy Ralph his soup?

Step 3: Murdering Your Characters

Now the really important part of your characters is figuring out who is gonna die, and in what order they will die. Figuring out who dies is as simple as 1 2 sex. Yup, that's right. If you have sex in a horror movie, you will almost always die. And unsurprisingly, considering the way most of these characters are written, a LOT of people die horribly. Bonus points to those who write in a double kill while the two are still going at it.

But if you have one person die at a time, this is a good chance to throw in some dialogue from one character wondering where the other character is and calling out for them. This will go on for quite a while since that person is dead, but like I said before, you gotta fill in that run time somehow. 

Other characters to kill include black guy......... and now you know who all to kill! Anything after that is optional, but it's good to get at least one black guy in there. It's pretty much tradition at this point.

One last thing. Leave at least one character alive who's pretty much the only likable character in the whole movie. Odds are they're a virgin too, as well as a girl. I would suggest using a girl here anyway because 1) Feminism points, and 2) Last time there was a final guy instead of girl, we got Nightmare on Elm Street 2, a film deemed to be the homoerotica of horror movies. So you know... just be careful.

Step 4: Scare Methods

There are plenty of ways to scare your audience without blood and gore. And the best part about these methods is that it helps a great deal with the run time! 

Now I know it sounds like a lot of-

???: HOOPLA!

...I know it sounds like a lot of-

???: HOOPLA!

...............It sounds like a lo-

???: HOOPLA!!!!

*camera pans*

RB'sB: HOOPLA!!! *gets hit by brick*

I know it sounds like a lot of hoopla over something as trivial as run time. But I can't stress this point enough. You're on a shoestring budget, your movie is about a guy who kills people, and you're supposed to get at least 2 hours worth of film before editing. You will need all the time you can get.

So one thing you can do is "set the mood" by having a character walk around or something and pretty much nothing else. Most of the time these scenes would be considered boring, but don't worry about that. You're making a scary movie, so these scenes will be observed as ominous instead. This means audiences believe they're being scared, and you have the added luxury of reaching that 90 minute mark more easily. It's a win-win!

Speaking of ominous, it's good to throw in some of those classic POV shots. Particularly ones with heavy breathing. Seriously, these movies love the crap out of POV shots, they're freaking everywhere. It doesn't even have to be of the slasher's perspective. It could just be a friend of the main character who taps the other character on the shoulder instead of just saying their name like a normal person would. Speaking of which, now's a good time for a jump scare!

You may have thought only ghost movies today use jump scares, but my friend, these bad boys have been around for decades p***ing audiences off everywhere. And if you're feeling particularly edgy, then think of the one thing worse than a jump scare. A fake out jump scare! There's literally nothing scary about this scene. But hey, you threw in really loud music, a method I like to call the shotgun blast, so your crowd will jump at the very least. Surprising may not be the same as scary, but they don't know that ;)

Step 5: Nudity

Boobs.

Step 6: The Slasher

And here we are at the final step of the process, and by far the most important. The being you choose to kill your characters is the image that sticks in your audience's mind the longest despite the limited screen time.

When it comes to design, you've gotta pick the best mask you can think of. It doesn't have to be a scary mask either. Was anyone really scared of hockey or Captain Kirk before slashers came out? A mask is an easy way to give your killer a sense of omnipotence. They're not just some regular human. They are a monster with a one track mind. And it may as well be a one track mind so that you don't have to worry about silly things like motivation. Sure, you can throw some back story in there, and even make a connection between the killer and the main character. But other than that, just make them crazy! 

I mean, if this was actually a smart psychopath, then they'd likely only need to kill one or a maybe even a few people depending on their agenda. But the blood bath is the best part, so as long as they're crazy and never talk, silly things like motivation don't matter as they barely even count as human. As long as you can throw in more kills to spice things up, you're pretty much golden!

But even if the slasher is technically human, they really aren't. I don't care what kind of weapons your character has or how good they are with them, your slasher can never ever die. After all, you've gotta make some of that sweet sweet box office money off butt loads of sequels and spin offs. There is of course the option of simply changing your killer, but if you're franchise strays off the beaten path even a tiny bit, people will hate your movie and consider it terrible, even if it's objectively of the same quality as the rest of the franchise. So whatever you do, don't kill you slasher, and don't change your slasher. Especially if they've already been in two movies.

So what weapons does your slasher use? Guns? Pfft, heck no! Nowadays, most audiences associate guns with cool characters like Deadpool or John Wick. Plus, we wanna give off the illusion that your characters will have some chance of surviving. So absolutely no firearms of any kinds. How are you supposed to stab with a gun anyways? The most memorable and scary kills come from knives, machetes, blades, saws, pretty much anything your slasher can get their hands on.

Conclusion

Congratulations! You have now reached the end of you slasher movie! But before you go, you might as well throw in just one last scare for the audience. Even if it makes literally no sense even within the context of the film. You could have your slasher not be dead, or allude to a new killer, have the supposedly main character get killed in what is more than likely just a dream and doesn't even matter since they're in the next movie. Or if you're seriously low on ideas and can't use anything else, just have a character look directly at the camera and slightly scowl. Because apparently that's all it takes to be scary. A fourth wall break. And nothing else....

You have now completed your tutorial on how to make a slasher movie! You have the tools, now get on out there and make art, money, and a difference! Just please don't end your movie the way I was talking about. It's really really stupid.


  • Listening to: Smash Ultimate Music
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: Mr. Show
  • Playing: N Sane Trilogy
  • Eating: Pizza
  • Drinking: Capri Sun
Hey there everybody! To prove I'm not dead, here's a another editorial where I bring my two cents into the world of entertainment. We've talked about filler, narration, but know it's time for something much more in my ball park. Today, we're gonna discuss the fundamentals of voice acting. More specifically, why and how animation uses celebrities for their characters.

If you guys have followed me for a while, you'll notice that any time a brand new movie is announced, the first thing I focus on is the voice cast. In fact, I'd say I've made it my mission to be as informed on casting as I can. This is for a couple of reasons. Being a voice actor myself, I take the job very VERY seriously. Sure, animation is a visual medium, but could you imagine so many memorable scenes without acting in them? That's not to say silent short films aren't fun to watch. Heck, Shaun the Sheep is one of my favorite movies. But voice acting adds an entirely new level to the story and, if it's done well, helps immerse the audience even further than before.

In order to be a good voice actor, one must be able to visualize their character, the setting, and the context, and then go to town on the microphone. It's arguably much harder in this sense because of this. Live action actors have the advantage of being right there in the moment, meaning they're not forced to imagine how the scene plays out. And if the voice acting is good, we get amazing results. However, if the voice-over is bad, we get horrendously cringey (yet admittedly funny) scenes from stuff like Mega Man 8, Resident Evil, Speed Racer, etc. Bottom line, it's the job of the voice actor to make the audience believe it's the character talking and not just some guy in a booth.

So, why am I talking about celebrities specifically? Well, there are a few reasons, but before I get into the meat of things, I'd like to cover a brief history of the usage of celebrities in voice acting roles.

As much as I hate it, I fully accept that voice actors don't get nearly as much credit or praise as other actors. And this is understandable. VA's get most of their work from cartoons, anime, commercials, and video games, all of which have relatively niche audiences compared to the general public. Plus, it's kind of hard to get stopped on the street and get recognized if you're a voice actor since, more often than not, people have never seen your face.

A Brief History of Celebrity Voice Acting

This wasn't always the case though. Way back in the day when animation was in its baby years, creators would normally just do casting by accessibility. You may recall that Walt Disney did the voice for Mickey in the very first cartoons, but after a while he eventually passed the character on to those more seasoned in the field. Because animation was so new, most casts would consist of actors that nobody really knew up to that point. The story and art always came first, and with the exception of people like Mel Blanc, voice acting notoriety was nearly nonexistent.

Every now and then we would get notable people like Cliff Edwards who voiced Jiminy Cricket in Pinocchio, but for the most part, voice actors were cast for their skill alone, and film studios weren't as concerned with getting actors based on notoriety. But then, everything changed in the year of 1992. A little underground studio wanted to make an animated film and were looking for someone to voice a character that would go on to be one of the most beloved voice acting performances of all time.



Robin Williams as the Genie was a game changer in every sense of the word. I could go on for a while on how incredible his performance was for many different reasons, but I'll save that for a later date and focus on the topic at hand. When everyone heard Robin Williams' voice coming from an animated mouth, they all began to realize that animation can actually be taken seriously and be used to make a lot of money. Aladdin did an incredible job at the box office and awoke people on the benefits of voice acting. But here's where things get a little dicey.

Like any amazing product, there always seems to be a catch. Any time something is successful, business people take note on why it was successful. When The LEGO Movie, Shrek, South Park, and Ren & Stimpy turned a profit, others saw this as a chance to cut corners instead of excelling by making shameless rip offs with the soul intent of riding off the success of others. In this case, business execs seemed to think Aladdin was a hit for one reason only. Oh no, I'm sure it had nothing to do with the funny dialogue, touching story, beautiful animation, catchy songs, or the lovable characters. Nope, it's because they used a celebrity. I mean, it's genius really! If an adult looks at an animated film thinking it's just for kids, when they see that big name on the poster they think, "Oh s***. They're not messing around. I don't care if they got an actor who was right for the part. They got an actor I know, so that must mean it's automatically better than a film that uses faceless veteran voice actors right?"

So from then on, films like Shrek, Toy Story, The Lion King, and even The Prince of Egypt used a s*** ton of popular names, and the people behind those decisions marketed the Hell out of it in hopes of turning an even bigger profit.

You may recall that whenever I talk about a film's cast, I take time to praise the casting directors for getting real voice actors. Because of this, I probably come off as a salty VA who thinks films should only use voice actors and never celebrities. Well, the answer is a bit more complicated than that, but let's just say I personally look up to people like Mel Blanc, Tom Kenny, and Tara Strong more than Will Smith, Jerry Seinfeld, or Chris Rock.

Speaking of Chris Rock, why don't I talk about the moment that inspired me to write this journal in the first place?



*deep breath* *deep exhale* Okay, I am going to give Chris the benefit of the doubt here. After all, he is a great comedian and one of my favorite SNL alums, and he likely didn't mean to offend anyone and was just joking, but there's quite a bit to unpackage here. 

Let's ignore the fact that voice acting, as a profession, has faced this kind of discrimination and jeering for years, with most people thinking it's as easy as reading words on a paper and nothing else. Let's ignore the fact that Chris uses his same voice for characters like Marty and Osmosis Jones while most VA's use many different tones, pitches, and effects for their characters. 

I think what Chris was trying to say here is that celebrity voice acting is easy, and you know what, I can see where he's coming from. After all, he was essentially escorted into a booth to play a character that was specifically designed around his voice to walk, talk, and act just like him. What I'm about to say can apply to acting in general, but it's still very important. A good character should not rely on the real life persona of the actor himself. After all, it's the actor who makes the character, not the other way around.

Just Be Yourself and the Rest Will Follow

What's so impressive about voice actors to me is how they can completely morph and dictate who the character is. What I mean by that is characters like Bugs Bunny or Daffy Duck would be completely different if they were originated by anyone other than Mel Blanc. But with characters like Marty, they wouldn't even exist if Chris Rock wasn't a popular comedian.

The reason I take umbrage with this is because it sucks all the creative juices out of the process. It's like whenever fan fiction writers insert themselves into their own stories. There's a good reason why most people don't like it. If you were to ask someone to do an impression of cartoon characters, they're more likely to say, "Wanna see my Sylvester impression," as opposed to, "Wanna see my Mel Blanc impression?" But if you ask someone to do their best Barry impression, they're just gonna give their best Seinfeld voice.

There's also the other extreme, and that's when a casting decision makes you ask, "What is the point?" What I mean by this is when you get a really famous person to voice your character, but they bring virtually nothing interesting to the table that a normal VA couldn't already do in spades. A famous example is Cameron Diaz as Fiona. In the original Shrek, she probably gave the flattest performance out of anyone, though to be fair she did get better in later films.

One of the best ways to differentiate characters is with different voices. A distinct voice allows you to hear and imagine that character in your mind as well as recall their name and personality more easily. So getting celebrities with really flat and vanilla voices (examples including Bolt, Kubo and the Two Strings, and Pocahontas) not only makes it harder to remember the characters but also more frustrating because there are so many incredible voice actors out there with varied, interesting, and engaging voices. Some of which even come from the same person. Because of this, we remember these characters like this. "What's that one movie I'm trying to think of? It's got Roseanne Barr, except she's a farm cow."

But one example that frustrates me more than anything else is the Chipmunks franchise. What is the point of getting people like Alan Tudyk, Justin Long, Amy Poehler, and Christina Applegate if you're just gonna make them completely unrecognizable in post? It just seems like a waste of money to me more than anything. Wouldn't it be smarter to save money by getting some randos to do the parts? And I know what you're thinking, at least they're not playing themselves. But it's the voice acting equivalent of auto tuning. I mostly just see it as cheating.

Lazy Design

Ever heard of the term Ink-Suit Actor? It's kind of like doing what I had been talking about earlier except showing zero shame. Remember back when celebrity cartoons were all the rage? People like Mr. T, Chuck Norris, and the Osmonds to name a few got their own cartoons. No, not because there was an interesting story to tell, but because they were ridiculously marketable at the time and saved a lot of time on creative efforts. Celebrity cartoons are some of the most vehemently hated genres in existence, to the point where there's only two good ones I can think of.

The first one being Mike Tyson Mysteries. It may star Mike Tyson as himself, but the entire show does such an amazing job of lampooning the genre and has some of the funniest dialogue I've ever seen. Seriously, go check out Mike Tyson Mysteries, it is tragically underrated. And the other cartoon is Milo Murphy's Law, starring Weird Al Yankovik. People love this show, and the reason for that is because Weird Al is actually playing a character. In fact, I'm not even sure if it counts as a celebrity cartoon, but my point still stands. I simply see no point in spending millions of dollars on animation just to see actors do the same shtick they already do in front of the camera. If I wanted to see Jerry Seinfeld tell a bunch of his jokes, I'd just watch one of his stand up specials.

But this is where film makers got the brilliant idea to be like, "Hey, I know. Let's hire celebrities to act exactly like themselves and hide it by turning the characters into animals or other types of creatures." It's Will Smith, but he's a fish! It's Ryan Reynolds, but he's a snail! It's Jim Parsons, but he's a purple alien!  It's Tina Fey, but... oh damn, they weren't trying to hide it in Mega Mind. That character looks almost identical to Tina Fey. Anyways, it's Larry the Cable Guy, but he's a car!



You get the idea.

Are You Even Trying?

But I'll give those films credit, at least the characters actually look like those voices should come out of their bodies. Remember when The Lorax tried to convince us that a 13 year old kid had the voice of Zac Efron? I don't think I even need to say what's wrong with that, other than for the love of Christmas, please at least skim through the other people who auditioned. You may be surprised by the amount of talent you'll find, and there are countless talented voice actors out there clawing at each other to get even a single role.

People do this because it's safe and not as risky as writing a character, finding the perfect voice for said character, and then letting the cast actor make the character their own. And if you thought that was bad, sometimes studios will get veteran VA's to do lines for their films, and then let the celebrities use the recordings as a guide without paying the voice actors or giving them any credit. I'm serious, this actually happens sometimes, and it makes me absolutely livid! If this wasn't proof that voice actors get little to no respect, then I don't know what is.

*sigh* It just frustrates me so much because before all of this, voice actors were able to do their own thing while live actors did their's. All these animated films that hire celebrities and don't even give voice actors the time of day is just so unfair. It's like these people are having their livelihoods stolen. In other words, "They took our jobs!"

How to be Tasteful

One thing I find particularly interesting is how studios have been going about this practice when compared to each other. And sometimes the differences are so night and day that it serves as an easy and efficient way of getting across how to do this kind of thing properly.

I know I've ragged on DreamWorks a lot, but there's a reason for that. They are the embodiment of this problem. Not just when it comes to lazy casting or character design, but also in marketing. Take a look at posters for Aladdin. If that film was released today, you can bet your bottom dollar that it would've had Robin Williams' name front and center despite him not actually being Aladdin. At least, it would in another more positive universe. RIP Mr. Williams. In fact, I'd be willing to bet Aladdin himself would also get a more notable voice. Probably a pop star or dream boat to make the ladies wanna see the movie. But because that film came out in 1992, Disney was much more subtle with the way they sold Aladdin and let people find out for themselves. It's almost like they were treating the Genie like he was an actual character and not just a tool for Robin Williams to do stand up. 

Now take a look at films like Megamind, Bee Movie, Shark Tale and countless others. Each of these films were essentially marketed like this. "Look at all these cool people we have! This proves our film is legitimate! We have REAL actors! Not crummy voice actors! Who cares about those guys? They only do childish work. We've got professionals in our project!"

Now look, obviously I'm not saying it's bad for animated films to have celebrities in their cast as well as showing it off. That's not the problem. The problem is when it's treated like the most important thing ever and you're to look at the characters as extensions of real like people instead of... well characters. Actually, it's been a while since I've done my last comparison. So how about I do an unorthodox comparison with two very recent films from two very different studios? Let's talk about Inside Out and Sing.

Sing is pretty much the epitome of "it's all right" by taking zero risks and being as safe as humanly possible. But one of the worst parts about Sing isn't even an element of the movie. I'm talking, of course, about the nearly propaganda-like advertising. Good God was it a dark time in December of 2016. Even people who like the film can admit that Illumination went overboard. But what's even more shameless is the way they sell the cast. Sing has a cast pretty much made up of celebrities turned into animals as opposed to fully fledged characters. One of the worst problems with Sing was the pacing, and this was due in no small part by the gigantic cast. Illumination wanted to get as many celebrities as possible to appeal to as many people as possible. But because they couldn't settle for just a few, we have a mess of a story that wasn't designed for such a big ensemble cast.

And they're not even the worst offenders of this. Films like Angry Birds and The Star have so many celebrities to show off in their trailers that I can barely even read the names on the screen. It's way too damn crowded! It feels like these worlds are gonna burst at any minute, like a human zit!

RB'sB: Whoa.

What?

RB'sB: Nothing. Just got a serious case of deja-vu. Probably not important.

Well anyway, now let's take a look at Inside Out. I freaking LOVE the casting choices made here. First off, when Pete Docter did his research, he knew exactly what his main characters needed to be, i.e. the five major emotions. Because of this, he was able to get a good idea of which actors would be right for the job, and that's why everyone fits their roles perfectly. Amy Poehler is very chipper and fun to watch, and much better sounding withOUT the high pitch chipmunk voice I might add. The same principle goes for Lewis Black, Phyllis Smith, Bill Hader, and Mindy Kahling. When I see the character of Fear or Anger, I don't see the voices behind them, I see Fear and Anger. Sing literally has a poster with each of the celebrities standing next to their animated counterparts. Suspension of disbelief be damned.

One more thing about Sing, how do you manage to typecast someone as talented and full of range as Seth Macfarlane?! This man can actually voice act really well, yet here he is playing someone who's arrogant but clearly has a lot of talent that doesn't gets utilized well that much. That's ridiculous I tell you.

Hey, Don't They Sound Kind of Similar?

You know how characters like Bugs Bunny and Winnie the Pooh are multi-generational and appear in all kinds of different media? Well, somebody's gotta keep voicing those characters. The only problem is that the original voice actors don't live forever. But the characters they've established do. So if you can find someone who can not only act but also sounds just like them, then I see no reason why they shouldn't be cast.

Good examples of this among notable names include Brad Garret as Eeyore and Justin Timberlake as Boo Boo Bear of all characters. Didn't see that last one coming. And hey, even though I'm a big Roger Craig Smith fan, Ben Schwartz may be the most perfect casting they could've made for the Blue Blur.



But what about casting original characters?

Pixar, Why You Gotta be so Good?

If ever there was a studio to get casting as spot on as I've said, it has gotta be Pixar. If you ever needed a template for how to cast actors correctly, then these guys would be my first suggestion.

From the very beginning, these guys weren't afraid of getting pretty big names for their projects. Toy Story has got Tom Hanks and Tim Allen, Bug's Life has Dave Foley and Kevin Spacey (ugh...), and Monsters Inc has John Goodman, Billy Crystal, and Steve Buscemi. That's a lot of A-listers folks. But they actually had good reason for casting all these guys. It's not because they're popular, it was because they were talented, and quite frankly they still are. 

Even when they do get celebrities, most of the time they'll try to get those with VA experience. Up stars Ed Asner, and this guy has been voice acting for years. Same goes for others like Samuel L Jackson and Bill Hader. Plus, even when they get people with very minimal acting experience overall like Ellen Degeneres, they actually gave her a character to work with as well as intuitive voice direction. I love Dory, the character, and I appreciate Ellen Degeneres' hard work bringing her to life.

Then you've got WALL-E, which is nearly 50% silent robots interacting with each other, which is pretty damn brave. As for more recent examples, take a look at Coco. It's the first first film with a 9 digit budget to have an all Latino cast. Actually, does Coco even have celebrities? Benjamin Bratt maybe, but I don't think they do. And you know what the real kicker is? All of these films did a sensational job at the box office, and they didn't even need Will Smith being Will Smith.

Pixar's not the only studio that does a good job of this. Take a look at the LEGO Movie. That film has a ridiculous amount of celebrities. But barring Morgan Freeman and Elizabeth Banks, everyone uses a character voice. It's hard to imagine that Emmet and Star Lord have the same actor. And after watching Community, I still have a tough time believing that's Alison Brie as Unikitty. Heck, she did such a good job that even Tara Strong had a hard time following her up. She managed to beat one of the most prolific female VA's ever at her own game. Now THAT'S impressive. Oh God, and then you've got Liam Neeson playing two characters in one, Will Arnett giving Kevin Conroy a run for his money, Nick Offerman sounding completely unrecognizable as Metal Beard, Charlie Day yelling spaceship, and even Banks and Freeman do fantastic jobs, and I don't think they've ever done any voice acting beforehand. Well, unless you count narration.

Despite using more celebrities after Aladdin, Disney still kept the tradition of normally getting a pretty unknown actress to play their princesses with characters like Mulan, Tiana, and Moana, the latter of which really only had Dwayne Johnson as a celebrity with a major role, and I can't imagine the movie without him there. Each one of these ladies did incredible jobs, and it's all thanks to Disney taking a chance. But I think my favorite Disney example in this case is Zootopia. I know I said I'm fine with celebrity voice actors being used properly, but it is so damn refreshing to hear multiple veteran voice actors (John Dimaggio, Jenny Slate, and Maurice Lamarche) that also have a pretty decent number of lines. 

Even DreamWorks has gotten much better in recent years with their casting jobs. As much as I dislike Trolls, I have to admit that each actor fits their role perfectly, and I really appreciate DW doing the extra mile to get people with singing AND acting experience. HTTYD and KFP speak for themselves, and I think I've raved enough about THAT movie.

RB'sB: You mean Cap-?

SHHHH!!! Even if I hear the name I could risk going into a shock from pure joy! Anyway, I feel like I shouldn't just be praising the studios.

My Personal Favorite Celebrity Voice Actors

Voice actors may be the people I look up to, but the people I'm about to list here not only do a great job in their transition from in front of a camera to behind a mic, but they also clearly have a lot of respect for the medium, giving me hope that general audiences will too when it comes to other voice actors.

Robin Williams is the most obvious first pick. After all, he was the one who really kick started the phenomenon. But he's not the only one who had a big hand in it. Remember when I mentioned Shrek? Well, that film decided to use Mike Myers and Eddie Murphy, and these two are fabulous voice actors! Having worked on SNL for years and many other comedic projects, these two truly understand the fundamentals of voice acting because they're such good character actors. They are very famous for playing multiple roles in films like Coming to America and The Spy Who Shagged Me; each of which shows off their very impressive ranges. So if you ask me, these two fit right into the world of animation.

You may have noticed that these guys all have something in common. Namely the fact that they're all comedians. Which made me think, "Perhaps comedians are better suited to voice acting than most regular actors." 

Here's an example of this that I think may ruffle a few feathers. I think Sausage Party has much better voice acting than Kubo and the Two Strings. And I'm not kidding. Maybe Kubo has objectively better voiceover, but I still consider SP's more engaging. Everyone in Kubo just sounded super flat to me, and it seemed like anybody could've been in those roles. In fact, a big reason why I can't get into that movie as much as others is because of the voice acting. Sausage Party on the other hand is a riot, and the story had me engaged the whole way through because of how much energy and passion each actor put into their character. People like Seth Rogen, Kristen Stewart, and Nick Kroll give me a lot to care about because of how invested and fun they are.

But hey, even though I praise veteran voice actors for their ability to change their voices on the fly, that's not all it takes to be a good voice actor. A common misconception is that you need to be able to do a bunch of voices in order to be good at voice acting. But in actuality, voice acting is 10% silly voice, and 90% acting. There may be no camera, but you still have to be able to act. So if you're a celebrity who can act that doesn't have a whole lot of voices to use, then that's okay! You can still get a low A at the very least.

Some of my favorite voice actors include people like Patton Oswalt, Kristen Schaal, Patrick Warburton, Danny Devito, Dana Snyder, and Sarah Silverman. With these guys, it's not too hard to guess it's them doing the voice. But hey, that doesn't matter because they're so damn good at acting. For instance, Brock Samson and Kronk are pretty much nothing alike, so the fact that Patrick Warburton can play the two seamlessly with his normal voice is arguably more impressive than if he used different voices. The fact that I see Phil from Hercules and Mr. Swackhammer as two completely different characters and not just Danny Devito says a lot about his range as an actor. In fact, I kind of wish he was doing Detective Pikachu still.



And then you've got guys like John Goodman, Samuel L Jackson, Keith David, and JK Simmons who have lent their voices to so many projects over the years that they might as well be considered honorary voice actors. Most of the time they're not even in very big roles too, so they're clearly doing it because they have a passion for the craft. Oh, and I'm sure it pays pretty well too. Chris Rock at least had one point correct.

But hey, if you're a celebrity who can act AND have the range of a normal voice actor, then that my friend is brownie points. Where would we be without David Tennant and his glorious Scottish brogue as Scrooge McDuck? At least we'd still have his haunting performance as Lord Commander from Final Space, where he's pretty much a different being altogether.

Clancy Brown may be known for a lot of his live action work, but this guy is essentially the Kevin Michael Richardson of celebrities. One minute he can be cold and threatening with characters like Surtur, Lex Luthor, and Red Death, but the next he can sound super sweet and child friendly with characters like Mr. Krabs, Mr. Cardsley, and... huh. Also Red Death? How about that. 

And let's not forget Alan Tudyk, a man who has appeared in nearly every Disney movie in the last decade and yet requires careful attention and listening to even be able to tell him that it's him at all!

But if I had to pick the absolute best one of them all, I think the choice is quite obvious. Mark freaking Hamill you guys. The general public knows him as Luke Skywalker, and they probably thought he didn't do anything for years until The Last Jedi. Now, I'd be pretty disappointed if my so called "comeback" had to be The Last Jedi, but fortunately that's not the case with Mr. Hamill. Despite playing one of the most iconic protagonists in history, Markie Mark has kept his career going strong by mostly voicing horrifying villains. Seriously, the list feels endless. Fire Lord Ozai, Captain Stickybeard, Experiment 210, and of course The Joker, the latter being so iconic that people still try to replicate its perfection to this day. Actually, now that I think about it, I'm pretty sure the only other hero he's ever done was Skips. Now that's pretty damn cool. But this guy has been in so many projects for such a long time, I sometimes forget that he's technically a celebrity.

Conclusion

In the end, I guess I really shouldn't be treating celebrities any different than voice actors. However, I think I reserve the right to hold them to higher standards. If they were good enough to get a role in a field in which a lot more people have way more experience, then I expect them to prove that to me by being pretty damn good.

The reason I'm always praising films for using actual voice actors (or at least those with plenty of experience in the field) is because it shows how much the people behind the film care about the creative process. In the end, if you want your project to be good, then one of the most important steps is making sure you got the absolute best person to bring the words on paper to life, whether they're famous or not.

So, I'll tell you guys what. From now on, I promise to take off my tinted glasses, and look at each voice acting role for what it is. And if that person does a good job, I'll be more than happy to concede and admit it. However, if a film actually DOES get a bunch of voice actors, then I have absolutely every right to geek out and be hyped beyond all belief. Cool? That being said, I think we can all at least agree on one thing.


















THE LION KING REMAKE IS GONNA SUCK BA-


  • Listening to: John Mulaney
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: Mr. Show
  • Playing: N Sane Trilogy
  • Eating: Pizza
  • Drinking: Capri Sun
RB: Hello everybody! It's been nearly a month since the last part, I've been eating Mike's food in between that time, and I haven't attended a single one of my college classes. What say we review Escape From Reality?

Mike: 
I say that that sounds like a great pla-Hey, what was that about my food?

RB: 
Oh yeah, I've been meaning to tell you. You should probably get some more hot pockets.

Mike: 
How did you even...ugh...never mind...this is an episode that needs a thorough defense. Let's give it one.

RB: 
As Andrew Garfield once said, it's time to lawyer up! The episode begins with an establishing shot of how the town is coping with their new over lord. Some do this by turning everything they own into triangles. This is less than effective.


I don't think that's what Bill wants.

</span>Mike: People are just getting eaten by mailboxes and turned to stone left and right. As to be expected, Bill is enjoying every second of this, along with his cronies, including the creature with 87 different faces.

Creature with 88 Faces: 88 different faces!

O_O Uh...

RB: 
Oof, touchy subject I guess. Having gotten their fill of Gravity Falls (how is that even possible?), Bill and his minions are ready for global domination. But some mysterious force is keeping them all from actually leaving the town. You know, between this and needing to trick people into being able to escape an entire dimension, I feel like we kind of overestimate Bill's abilities sometimes.

Mike: 
This is the same guy that was defeated with cats and puppets, as the show so kindly pointed out to us before. But enough about that, it's time to see just what the Hell is inside this strange bubble of Mabel's. Dipper, Wendy, and Soos have prepared for the worst, and once they find their footing, we're finally shown what the mysterious bubble houses.

Dipper: Huh? Is the entire ground a bouncy castle?

Wendy: Do you hear 80s music?

Soos: And does the air smell like childlike wonder?

Well...can't say I was expecting that.

RB: 
And my faith in Bill as an awesome villain has officially been restored. The only thing more diabolical than keeping someone in Hell way from there home is keeping them in a utopia so perfect that they never wanna leave. Now that is some damn impressive psychological warfare.

Mike: 
It actually is very dark when you think about it at length, especially for a Disney show, and the episode really dives into the implications of that later. For now, we as the viewers are at least given a visual treat in the form of this "Mabeland", as the show refers to, with every second being filled with something bright, colorful, visually appealing, and even some throwbacks to previous episodes!

Boy: Yes, definitely, absolutely! 

Who aside from diehard fans of the show would get that reference? Kudos to you, writers, for throwing us long-time watchers a bone.

RB: 
I love it so much when shows do that while at the same time being inviting to casual fans. Heck, we even get a subtle Disney reference.

Soos: What is this new world? Shining, shimmering, splendid.

We even get the return of Xyler and Craz, who tell us that this world has only one rule that's apparently not even worth mentioning. In other news, foreshadowing is a b**ch.

Mike: 
I think that's what Deadpool would refer to as a "big heaping bowl of foreshadowing". Xyler and Craz offer to take the ragtag group to where Mabel is, though Dipper isn't letting his guard down.

Dipper: Can you guys just hold on a second? Do you see what's happening here? Don't forget this world was created by Bill. That punch is probably blood! And that glitter rain is probably ground up bones, or babies, or something.

Spoiler alert, it's not, but Jesus Christ, show! Where was that one Alex Hirsch clip again? 



RB: Do you think if Alex Hirsch ever had kids he wouldn't even pretend that Santa and the Easter Bunny are real? That's what this show feels like to me. A deadpan parent who isn't afraid to be straightforward with their kids while at the same time knowing how to have fun and be a good role model. It's the kind of no bull crap attitude that's sorely lacking in most cartoons sadly.

Mike: 
Now I'm just desperately hoping that if he has kids, he doesn't pull any bullsh*t with them, because that would be utterly hilarious. And while it may be lacking in other cartoons, at least it does make its appearance here all the more special.

RB: 
Fair enough in that regard. This show teaches kids all kinds of life lessons, like how having waffle guards isn't a very good idea. I swear, that part gets me every time XD

Waffle Guard: Aaah! It's happening! The moment we've trained for!

Mike: 
R.I.P. Waffle Guards we knew for less than a minute. hangs head sullenly Anyway, the group scales the tower to see just what atrocities Mabel is going through, but...she's totally fine! Which kind of begins to tackle the "perfect utopia" mindset discussed earlier.

RB: 
This is the kind of monster Bill is. He knows how we think, and he knows exactly the kind of turmoil Mabel is going through. That is how he managed to perfectly create a world that she would never wanna leave. According to Bill himself, it would take a will of titanium to escape the bubble. Villains aren't terrifying just for their destructive capabilities. What makes them truly memorable is the way they can manipulate and deceive their enemies.


I know it doesn't look it, but this is truly diabolical.

Mike: 
Which, don't get me wrong, is beyond dark and scary when you think about it, though it does kind of make this the black sheep of the Weirdmageddon trilogy. Parts 1 and 3 have tons of dark imagery throughout and are more dedicated to showing just how much physical damage Bill has wrought throughout Gravity Falls. Of course, it's great that we have this episode to deal with how Bill is psychologically manipulating the main characters, it's just important to note that that is one of the many things that set this apart from Parts 1 and 3. For some like us, that's fine, but for others, as we'll get to, it leaves them with a little more to be desired.

RB: 
I guess maybe those people would've preferred that infamous deleted scene to be kept when Dippy Fresh gets introduced to help balance out the tonal dissonance where Dipper straight up snaps his neck. I honestly wouldn't put something like that past this show.

Mike: 
This f*cking show, man... Oh yeah, Dippy Fresh is a thing, and is another reason people give as to why people hate this episode. And...

Dippy Fresh: Wohoho! Yeah! Wiggity-wiggity-what's up, dude-bros? I'm Dippy Fresh! I like skateboarding, supporting my sister, and punctuating every sentence with a high five! Hup!

Yeah, I can kinda see why...but he's not a deal-breaker for me. He's MEANT to be over-the-top and punchable in every sense of the word. And besides, he's far from the focus or anything.


RB: 
And in Soos' defense, it's kind of a code to not leave another man hanging. That's just rude. But Mabel's not the only one this bubble was designed for. It's kind of like Pennywise, except instead of being designed to scare you, this place is designed to ensnare you. Not only does Wendy get to cause trouble with her friends again, Soos gets reunited with a character he's always envisioned as his father. That might actually be one of the most messed up things this show has done.

Ernesto: You don't remember what I look like, so I have the body of a pro wrestler and a face you once saw on a hot sauce bottle. I was never there for you, but in this world, I can be.

And apparently Soos imagined his father as Puss in Boots. Neat.

Soos: Even if it is all a dream, I've gotta play just one game.

Mike: Like...damn. That's...that's really sad...Can we go back to Bill being Bill please?

Bill: Alright, can anyone explain to me why, even with our newfound INFINITE POWER, none of us can escape the borders of this STUPID HICK TOWN?!! Thank you, I needed that, and I'm willing to be you all needed it too.(edited)

RB: A little bit of Bill can cure anything. Except weirdness. That's here to stay with him. Apparently Bill is just as jived as I m about his infinite power being confined to Gravity Falls. Which leads him to the conclusion that he's gonna need help from an old friend. What I just said is actually a lot more sinister sounding if you read the book. Context is king folks.


It's the simple designs that have a lot of potential to be memorable.

Mike: 
Our visit with Bill though, is short-lived, as we're brought back to the bubble, Dipper now alone now that his efforts in persuading Mabel have failed and Wendy and Soos have abandoned him. Even the stuffed animal tree and throwing perfectly-skipped rocks on a river of baby giggles does little to lift his mood. Though Wendy appears to stop by with some...rather interesting things to say.

Wendy: You know, you're so much smarter than like everyone else. Heh. It's kinda funny. If you were older you'd be like, my dream guy.



Wendy: Wait a minute. In this place you can be any age you want! If we were the same age maybe you and me could, I don't know, actually be together.



RB: What have Tumblr and DeviantArt done to you Wendy?

Mike: 
It was probably done for Hirsch to get one last "f you" to the shippers, since we all know how much he hates shipping, and, as it turns out, this is a fake Wendy made of leeches. Though there is another nice callback when she winks, which also gave away the fake Wendy in "Into the Bunker".

RB: 
Hoooly crap you're right. God this show is so damn creepy... and I kind of love it for that.

Mike: 
As we all, Carrick. As we all...

RB: Hey Mike, do you like bowls?

Mike: Umm...yes?

RB: 
Well that big bowl of foreshadowing you brought up just reared its head into the episode when Dipper brought up the real world.

Mike: 
Ah yes. As it turns out, the one rule mentioned earlier not to break was to never mention the real world. Breaking said rule calls for immediate banishment, though Mabel stands up for her brother not to be banned, which leads to him being put on trial. It's here we get to one of the most polarizing scenes of the show.

RB: 
Ho-ho boy, I've been waiting for this part forever. A court room perfectly styled to fit Mabel's word, complete with a kitten judge, a jury of Mabels, and a tapestry of Mabel actually making the rules of Mabel Land.


Rarity would be proud.

Mike: 
Hey, don't neglect to mention the judge's full name, Judge Kitty Kitty Meow Meow Face-Shwartstein. He's voiced by Jon Stewart, who thankfully does NOT have any sexual assault allegations surrounding him, so there won't be a need to redub him in the future.

RB: 
Phew, that's a relief. Whoa, I just realized that this is the reality we live in. Having to worry about cartoons being altered due to people we look up to being scum bags. I uh....do you think there's room in that bubble Mike?

Mike: 
DON'T FALL FOR IT, IT'S A TRICK BY BILL, THAT'S WHAT HE WANTS! puts on tinfoil hat ...Ahem. I would advise against that.

RB: 
Aw geez, what am I saying?! Quick, I'm gonna need on of those hats. Thanks for warning us Weird Al in your song.



Mike: 
Back to the episode, the courtroom scene is one that...I can see why one would take issue with. It can be just as frustrating for the audience as it is for Dipper as he's barely given a chance to state his case, while the opposition has plenty of time to give their baseless arguments, but given what the scene builds to, I can honestly excuse it. What say you?

RB: 
It all serves a purpose in the end. This is Bill's world after all, so of course Dipper is forced to fight an uphill battle here. Was anyone honestly expecting this scene to be fair? We don't have fair trials most of the time in reality, let alone worlds created by the literal freaking devil. And again, it leads to one of the most heart warming scenes of the whole show. And personally, it's my favorite scene of the whole trilogy. It's when Dipper shows Mabel how both of them are always there for each other, especially at the worst of times. Reality sometimes sucks, and it can suck hard. But we get through times like bad year book photos and and no Valentines with help from the people we love. We're in this together folks, and that's exactly why Mabel was so heart broken when Dipper decided to leave her alone without even consulting her.

Mike: 
It may not be my favorite scene of the trilogy, but of the episode? Hands down. We get to see Dipper use Xyler and Craz's instances of reality being "bogus" by showing flashbacks where he shaved part of his hair so that the two could have an equally screwed up picture day (how the f*ck did he sneak a razor into school?), Mabel making a valentine for Dipper when he didn't receive any (hold your horses, Pinecest shippers, not in that way), and other instances throughout the series of them sticking up for each other, so we get the best of both worlds of original content and content from previous episodes. It was definitely the best possible way the scene could've ended.


RB: 
But that's not all. People are angry that Mabel thwarted Dipper's dreams through her own selfishness, but Dipper comes to the conclusion to stay with Mabel on his own. To those that hate this episode, be honest. Do you really think Dipper would've been happier spending the rest of his teens cooped up in a lab away from his family instead of having a normal childhood with the people he loves? And as if to put everything in stone, Dipper hits us with the Yes. Definitely. Absolutely. call back, as well as my favorite call back of them all.

Mike: F
or the cherry on top of the sundae, the two top it off with not an "awkward sibling hug", but a sincere sibling hug. Again, to the episode's detractors, you have to admit that that's at least adorable as hell, right?

RB: 
Plus, listen to this dialogue.

Mabel: Aw, man, I never noticed how bright this place is, ugh! Have I actually been listening to the same song for an entire week?

That's clearly a sign that Mabel was under some kind of mind control. All it took was support from a sibling to snap her out of it.

Dippy Fresh: Yeah well-

GENUINE SUPPORT FROM A REAL SIBLING!!!! Like, shut up Dippy Fresh! Seriously man, shut up!!! You are everything that's wrong with society. People like you think that all we want to hear is "yes"and "totally," but that's all you people are there for. To be yes men. You never challenge us, you never support us, you never call us out, and more importantly, you can never ever empathize with us. You are like some over blown caricature that pretends to be a good friend that has our best interests at heart, but you're not. You're a slimey, obnoxious clod that needs to crawl under the bridge you came from. F*** you Dippy Fresh! F*** you!!!

Dippy Fresh: [link]

Mike: Ha. 
Dippy Fresh sucks XD Unfortunately, now Mabel no longer has control of the world (well, in that she can control what people do rather than control of her own mind), and thus all of its denizens have turned evil to attack her. Thankfully, the group manages to escape on a gigantic Waddles, which was cool to see, and Mabel pops the bubble. Another funny/cute moment between the twins later, and the group makes it to the Mystery Shack, where we're given one final major dose of callbacks.

RB: 
By the way, to those that still think Mabel is being selfish, did you all completely forget about this exchange?

Mabel: Hey, Dipper? I appreciate what you said back there, but if you want to take Ford's apprenticeship, I won't get in your way.

Dipper: Psh. And miss out on your awkward teen years? You wish.

Yikes, it must be hard for that argument to have good posture. After all, it has no leg to stand on.

Mike: 
OH F*CKING SH**T! Someone better call the fire department, because that roast was intense. And so, the episode ends with our group meeting up with Grunkle Stan in the Mystery Shack, along with a bunch of previous supporting characters/former villains that are all gonna team up in Part 3 to put an end to Bill's madness once and for all. Oh, and Xyler and Craz survived, but who cares?

RB: 
So yeah, this is the big bad episode everyone talks about as either being amazing or total dog s***. Well if I'm wrong for loving this episode then I don't wanna be right. I love it to death you guys.

Mike: 
For me, it's not my absolute favorite or anything. Hell, I probably wouldn't even put it in my top 10 for season 2. But the hate it's gotten is ridiculous. Now, I'll admit, it's not perfect, and when we get to Part 3, you'll see how I find that episode to be technically more flawed, but to label this as one of the worst episodes of the show? Poppycock. The visuals are appealing, its implications are gloriously dark, everyone's in character, and that ending was one of the most satisfying conclusions you'll get in this show. It's a good bridge between Parts 1 and 3, and while it's not as good as either, there's still plenty to enjoy here.

RB: 
Just because it's the end of the show that doesn't mean it has to be non stop darkness and action all the way through. You were absolutely right about this episode being a bridge. I'd say this episode's biggest offense was leaving us with wanting so much more for around 4 months. That wait for the final episode was one of the most agonizing periods of my high school years. And that in and of itself is a testament to how good this episode really was.

Mike: Disney sure did leave us tortured for those four months. I was lucky enough to see the finale with a group of friends, which did lessen the agony slightly. Slightly. Honestly, its message of accepting reality is one we could have used more of in the dumpster fire of 2016, two months after this episode aired. But that’s a whole different can of worms.

RB: 
A very brutal, disgusting, unreadable can of worms. Speaking of agonizing, how long do you think we should make everyone wait for the last part? Or better yet treat it like TV and split the third part into another two parts? That oughta be fun.

Mike: 
Hmmm...I think we can fit Part 3 into one part, though making them wait for it would be a funny joke.

RB: I'm certainly looking forward to that punch line. Any final comments before we put this part to bed?

Mike: This is MikeTheHuman113, and if there’s one thing this episode must be remembered for, it’s the unfortunate death of the unnamed waffle guards at the hands of Soos. It’s just...it’s too sad for me. Alexa, play “Despacito”. :’(



RB: 
Not on this channel you won't! See you guys later ^^



Mike: 
Hmmm...I wonder what TRADE and your brother are up to...

*meanwhile*

RB'sB: I think I'm gonna be sick.

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------To Be Continued
  • Listening to: Cool Patrol
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: Dragon Ball Z Abridged
  • Playing: N Sane Trilogy
  • Eating: Cookie
  • Drinking: Milk
From :iconinfraredtoa:

1: What show from your childhood holds up better today?

Avatar the Last Airbender, Chowder, Flapjack, Spongebob, Grim Adventures, Courage, K.N.D., Camp Lazlo, and Robot Chicken (not kidding).

2: A show that you've recently watched and love it so far?

The Venture Bros, Big City Greens, Craig of the Creek, Rise of the TMNT, Niko and the Sword of Light, and Final Space.

3: Favorite Characters?

Pinkie Pie, Bill Cipher, Grizz, Rick Sanchez, Max (Camp Camp), Weiss, Lavernius Tucker, Dewey, Mac, Abed, TFS Cell, Toph, Donnie, Todd Chavez, Hunk, H.U.E., and Unikitty.

4: What do you think of filler?

I've got a whole journal about that actually!

5: Favorite genre of shows?

Anything with tons of surrealism in it like The Venture Bros and Gumball. But not too much. It's good to have some grounding as well.

6: Shows you're looking forward to watching? (It doesn't have to be necessarily upcoming ones)

The Simpsons, Close Enough, 30 Rock, and Arrested Development.

7: Most underrated series?

Mighty Magiswords, Red vs Blue, Wander Over Yonder, Final Fantasy VII Machinabridged, The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle.

8: Series that you have a soft spot once in a while?

Flapjack, Fanboy and Chum Chum, Adventure Time, and Teen Titans Go!

9: Most Despised Series?

Not sure.

10: Most Despised Character?

Same.
  • Listening to: Cool Patrol
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: Dragon Ball Z Abridged
  • Playing: N Sane Trilogy
  • Eating: Cookie
  • Drinking: Milk
I understand if some of you are a little confused by the title of this journal, and I honestly don't blame you because I'm a little bewildered myself. Let me break it down for ya.

There I was, waiting in line at my college's cafeteria to get some grub when :iconilovededede: sends me a note with a link to a blog that reviews MY review of The Loud House. Whaaaaaat?

I'm honestly kind of shocked that this happened at all. I mean, I never would've thought one of my crappy reviews would be significant enough for someone, from a completely different site mind you, to write a response. Obviously I had to read it, and it is pretty damn tough. Luckily not too tough. The reason I'm making this journal at all is to commend the fellow for doing such a tasteful job of critiquing me while at the same time being fair when I did something right.

The internet needs more guys like Thomperfan. I'm just happy I knew about this review at all. I certainly don't care enough about Loud House to continue watching it, let alone get a wiki account.

So here's what's gonna happen. Despite how good the response was, there are quite a few things I feel I definitely need to clear up. Whether it be jumps in logic, fallacies, or even questions.

The format is gonna be a little weird seeing how this is a review of a review... of a review. So here's a little key for you guys.

Bold=Thomperfan's Review      Italics=It's a Loud Loud Loud Review Text      Normal=My own thoughts for this journal

I wonder how far we can get this review inception to go. Let's start off this dive by starting this review of a review of a review!

(NOTICE: This review will be censored in some scenes. I'm sorry, but this is only so this blog won't get taken down. I hope you enjoy it.) 

Dang, reviews can get taken down on wikis? I guess I should start appreciating my freedom a bit more of being able to post links of teenagers killing baby Satan.

OK, this is gonna be something different from what I usually do here. I’m gonna be giving my response to a DeviantArt user’s journal entry.

“But Thomper, why DeviantArt? Didn’t you say your parents wouldn’t let you have an account?”

Yes, they did. But that doesn’t mean I can’t still go on it and look at certain things people have created. And yeah, even though it stinks that I can’t leave comments, about how great or bad something is, it’s still great just to look.

Now the journal entry I’m gonna be responding to is by this guy named RaccoonBroVA. From I’ve seen, his content is alright, he’s made some good character comparisons, and some not so good ones to, but he’s okay.

Oof, cutting right off the bat. Joking aside, I feel I should preface this whole thing with a very big upfront. I don't consider myself a very good reviewer. Like, at all. Certainly not good enough to warrant an entire response from someone on another website no less.

Reviewing things is more of a hobby then anything else, and it's not even something I take that seriously. It's mostly just a way for me to either get in a good mood or vent. It's therapeutic more than anything else. With this journal in particular, I felt more and more isolated and alone because of an unpopular opinion. So I got it out of my system, felt better about it, and even got some nice feedback to boot. 

There's a reason you see VA in my name and not "the reviewer". Above all else, I'm a voice actor, and a damn good one too! So keep all of this in mind as we go further and further.

But when I saw this review, I had some serious thoughts on it, and I didn’t want to just leave a comment, because 1. I can’t leave comments, since I don’t have an account. And 2. The stuff I wanted to say would take up too much space for just one comment, so I figured this would be better.

This is gonna be in the style of MrTyeDye’s Peeking Through the Fourth Wall series, where I type the dialogue that was said and add in any extra thoughts, if I have any.

And just to be clear, I’m not just gonna focus on stuff I disagree with. I’m also gonna acknowledge the positives of this review and try to be as fair as I can. So without further ado, let’s get into it.

Sorry for the obvious title, but it got the most votes on my poll, so I think you guys are already okay with it.

Way back in the summer of 2016, Nickelodeon was showing promos for their newest cartoon following the boy who was the middle child to ten different sisters. When I first saw the promos, I thought it would suck. The premise sounded ridiculous, I didn't think the sisters would be very interesting, and the art style felt kind of lazy.

OK, I’m gonna tell you right now, I was the exact same way. I thought it was just one of those generics family shows that parents put on to distract their kids or something. The animation was honestly fine.

Come to think of it, was anyone actually excited for this show? Makes the fact that it became so popular all the more impressive I guess.

So I checked out the first few episodes, and I thought it was... harmless. There was nothing special about it, the show certainly could've been a lot worse. And I even managed to get all the sisters' names down pretty easily.

Again, exactly the same reaction I had. Although I did kinda struggle with Luna’s name for a little bit, but I figured it out, so, it’s fine.

Then I watched the next episode. And the next one. And the next one. And the next one. And the next one. And the next one

RB'sB: Hey man, you've got a phone call.

Phone: And the next one. And the next one. And the next one.

Now I know what you guys are thinking. Normally when a reviewer says that, they mean that they started getting more and more fascinated by the show as it went on in the same vain as Friendship is Magic or Gumball. But here's the real reason I kept on watching. I didn't watch because it was amazing. I was trying to figure out WHY it was amazing.

After all, it seemed to be the only show that anybody would talk about. For months I had to click through so many status updates, memes, artwork, and reviews all centered around The Loud House. Which raised the question for me. What's up with all the hype?

Homer Simpson - I Don't Get It-0

Homer Simpson - I Don't Get It-0

This I have to agree with. While I do love this show, I have to admit the hype is ridiculous. If you want, I made a blog addressing it here. I’ll try to sum up the reason I think TLH is overhyped as best I can. People think that the most modern Nickelodeon shows are complete garbage (Which they’re totally not.) And people think that the Loud House is the first good cartoon Nickelodeon has made in a while, and they’re also tired of SpongeBob getting all the popularity, so they want The Loud House to replace it as Nickelodeon’s mascot.

These people clearly haven't seen Harvey Beaks and TMNT 2012. Hell, the new turtles cartoon is pretty great so far. So I guess you could say I'm still very confused.

I could write an entire journal about hype killing a product, but the thing is, even before all the hype, I felt the exact same way about the show that I did when I watched the first episode. At least with Frozen and Avatar I can understand why they're so huge. But TLH is simply baffling to me. And now, I'm cursed to forever keep watching this mediocre show until I can finally find an episode that justifies the hype.

RB'sB: Wait a minute, I thought you liked the show. You even had it in your Top 20 Cartoons ever in that one status update.

I lied. I felt so guilty about not liking the show that I lied to you guys, and I lied to myself. I'm really sorry everybody. I thought that maybe if I forced myself to get the appeal I'd finally climb aboard the fun train, but it just didn't work. If anything, it made me even more frustrated with the show!

So, did you like the show, and then after that status update, you changed your mind? If that’s the case, than that’s nothing to be ashamed of. We all change our opinions on things. Or did you not like the Loud House even from the beginning and you just said that you liked it? If that’s the case, than you didn’t have to do that. People have different opinions and they shouldn’t be afraid to admit it, and forcing yourself to enjoy something is not a good move at all.

Since you asked, it's a little more complicated than that. When I posted the status update, and I know this is gonna sound strange, I actually tricked myself into liking it. That's what I meant about me lying to myself. I was so intimidated by the constant discussion and appraisal of one show that my brain wired itself to like it. It wasn't until season 3 came around that I finally started to realize something.



It was like a light switch went off in my head. After almost three seasons of it, I finally snapped myself out of denial and embraced the fact that I don't like this show, I never liked this show, and I likely never will like this show. Because season 3, and I know you and a lot of other people disagree with me here, really really stinks.

That's something I regret not covering more in my original review actually. I didn't spend nearly enough time on why I didn't like season 3. Probably because it was one of the most tried and true complaints of the show that I didn't feel like beating into the ground anymore than everyone already has, including fans. It's too damn predictable!

Roadie to Nowhere, I knew Luna would go back to music and Chunk wasn't homeless.
A Fridge Too Far, I knew that Lynn would win the fancy chef over with his normal cooking. There's literally a Spongebob episode about impressing fancy people with "low class" meals.
City Slickers, I knew that Lori would hate it in the city.
Net Gains, I knew that Lynn would eventually learn to be a team player. I know this isn't a bad thing obviously, but just because a moral is good doesn't mean the journey to it is. Lookin' at you Rainbow Falls.
Teacher's Union, I knew that the coach didn't lead an interesting life and would blow it on the date.
Insta-Gran, I knew that despite the episode hammering in that Myrtle is annoying AF that the episode would make a lame excuse as to why she does this. And yes, I said lame. I don't care if she was excited to be apart of a new family, people need to learn their boundaries and should be called out for BS. If you're gonna accept her into the family, then actually treat like family damn it!
White Hare....okay, to be fair, I couldn't predict anything in this episode due to how bat s*** insane it was.

Basically this i a problem the entire show was plagued with, and it seemed as if season 3 cranked the dial up to 11. Just enough to get me out of a daze. So, long story short, I really did think I liked The Loud House at the time. Once I had my epiphany, the rest is written plainly in black and white.

RB'sB: Which leads us to the elephant in the room. Do you actually think that a good TLH episode doesn't exist?

I don't see why that matters. I mean the journal was on April Fools Day.

I didn’t see that journal, so I don’t have a comment on it.

I essentially made a joke by posting a journal called "Top 8 Loud House Episodes (Part 1)" and told my brother, "You wanna know why I don't talk about the good Loud House episodes?" I left a majority of the journal blank to trick people into thinking it was longer, and if they got to the bottom they'd find this little gem.

[link]

Not very classy, but I'm still admittedly very proud of it.

*skipping*

Also, and I hate being that guy, but doesn't anyone else here think that having THIS many main characters for such a simple and episodic show is kind of a crutch? With this many characters, writers can literally fill entire voids in their episodes with the other main characters getting to do stuff. But the strange thing is that despite the endless possibilities, they've been doing nothing with them for about two seasons!

OK, that’s kind of a lie. Let’s not forget that in seasons one and two:

(Inhales deeply)

Lincoln realizes his best friend is lonely and finds comfort in spending time with Lincoln’s sisters, Leni overcame her fear of spiders (for a while) and saved Lincoln’s pet spider, We got to learn the backstory and the reason Luna is who she is today, Lana learned that she shouldn’t worry if she’s not like pageant girls and she’s perfect the way she is, Lola learning how to properly earn her sibling’s trust, Clyde got the confidence to be a big brother, Lana and Lola became Bluebell scouts, the pets made a new friend, the LKs have experienced love numerous times, Ronnie Anne learned that change can be good, and she has it great living with her extended family, Lynn Sr. got a new job as a co-chef, Lincoln and Clyde learned that even though their favorite show wasn’t real they could still find enjoyment out of it, Lori realizing she loves her family and shouldn’t rush moving out, and also learning that even though Clyde can be a nuisance, he is a really nice person, and she was being really mean to him, Lynn learning not to be too boastful when winning stuff, Lisa learned what true friendship really is, it was revealed that Leni is one of the most efficient party planners ever, Lincoln and Lynn Sr. got put on a game show that they both loved, Lincoln taught Lola how to read, Howard and Harold learned that they should stop worrying so much about Clyde and he can take care of himself, and Lana gave up her dream to save her siblings.

(exhales) And that’s not even counting what they’ve done in season 3.

Unbalanced Character Dynamics

These writers have infinite potential for episode ideas, so why have so many episodes only been about Lincoln? The episode is either just about Lincoln, Lincoln and Clyde, Lincoln and a sister, Lincoln and ALL the sisters, Lincoln and Ronnie Anne *shutters*, or Pets Peeved. There have been other exceptions like House Music and Friend or Faux?, but the only thing they have going for them is that they don't star Lincoln. And I can remember at the time of their releases how big a deal everyone was making out of it. Well it shouldn't be such a big deal! What is the point of having all these characters just to do nothing with them?

I refer to my last point, they did do some things.

Of all the opinions on my journal, this one is arguably one of the more vague ones. I understand how he misinterpreted my statement. So let me make one thing clear. The character balancing could've been a LOT worse. I still stand by it being unquestionably and unfairly in Lincoln's favor, but it's not like this show has the same problems as Steven Universe where characters literally can't be seen developing unless Steven's on screen.

But there's a very stark difference between those two. This may seem like a trivial statement at first, but it goes far deeper when it's put in practice. Nearly every episode of the show (barring exceptions like House Music, Friend or Faux?, and Garage Banned) is narrated by Lincoln.

Throughout seasons 1 and 2, the show will make a point to halt the progress so Lincoln can give some exposition to the audience or something else. The only reason I can think of for why they always do this other than to get the plot out more quickly is because the writers want you to know that this is Lincoln's story.

Back in my Captain Underpants review, I mentioned that despite the title, this was George and Harold's story. Deadpool doesn't just narrate because it's funny (not saying he isn't of course). He does it because its HIS story. Hell, even in Hercules, despite him being the main character, the Muses are the ones narrating because its their story to tell us. Hercules is simply the main character.

Yes, the characters have had plenty of moments to shine before, but whenever they get development, it feels more like an afterthought because of how much screen time Lincoln receives. It's not like the Muses where they occasionally pop in to give exposition. Lincoln is an actual character who has an affect on his surroundings, and until season 3, as well as those exceptions, came around, it just felt like, to me at least, he was constantly stealing his sisters' thunder. So while I acknowledge that the writers didn't do nothing with the sisters, I still firmly believe that there was a lot of wasted potential.

At least season 1 of MLP waits until the very end for Twilight to give the friendship lesson, giving her co stars plenty of time to shine beforehand. Even Steven Universe does a better job of fleshing out the characters thanks to the outstanding dialogue and atmosphere.

Some of the worst episodes are when the staff completely forget the sisters are even individuals and just have them act like a hive mind. Remember in Cereal Offender when all the sisters were there just to behave like brainless children and screw up Lincoln's end goal? Also, what was he doing again?

Bran Flakes-0

Bran Flakes-0

Getting a box of bran flakes? That's a worse character motivation than Grannies Gone Wild.

Rainbow Dash: 'Til finally you climb to the highest peak on the rails! Then drop towards the ground at lightning speed before coming up to a screeching halt! It's the coolest ride ever to exist in the history of Equestria!

YOU ARE LITERALLY THE FASTEST THING IN EQUESTRIA! WHY DO YOU CARE SO MUCH ABOUT GOING ON SOMETHING THAT'S NOWHERE NEAR YOUR SPEED?! Did you forget you can break the sound barrier?

OK, you’re right about that, but let’s not forget that the sisters did feel guilty and got Lincoln his cereal at the end.

Also, Rainbow Dash was probably just unleashing her inner child. We all have that memory of wanting to ride certain rides because you heard how awesome it was.

"Hey Lincoln? You know how we all acted like a bunch of idiots for no discernible reason other than to have a plot and got you banned from a store as a result of our hive mindedness when all you wanted was literally just a plain old box of cereal? Well here's a box of Zombie Bran that no kid in their right mind would find delicious, now that you have your cereal I guess this means that everything we did beforehand means nothing now and we should be immediately forgiven for the chaos that occurred earlier despite the fact that it's just a box of cereal and we probably get these things all the time considering we're a family of 13."

Have these girls ever been to a freaking grocery store before? I'd understand with the younger kids, and maybe even Lynn, but freaking everyone?!

Also Rainbow Dash riding a roller coaster would be the equivalent of a NASCAR driver getting on one of those tiny kiddie coasters at amusement parks and expecting it to be unironically amazing. I had to scale up a bit because, again, she can break the sound barrier. 

But that's another review, back to this one. Lincoln, to me, is one of the worst choices for a main protagonist I've ever seen. There is nothing interesting about him at all. I mean, he's nice. Okay. He has white hair. Fine. He reads comics in his underwear. How did we not realize Savino was a predator again? Lincoln, at his core, is the voice of reason of the group. He's there to reel in other characters from their shenanigans, and that's perfectly fine. But most of the time he's given nobody to reign in. Imagine if Applejack, Simmons, Ice Bear, Anais, or Squidward were the main characters of their respective cartoons. They'd be boring as heck shows. Or The Loud House I guess. At least Steven Universe is a compelling enough character to warrant all the screen time.

OK, I disagree with you on this completely, Lincoln is a great main protagonist, because of how relatable he is, I see myself in Lincoln in certain episodes, he like my role model to be a good brother. And yes, he does usually work as the voice of reason or the straight man, but he works just as well, when he’s not. I mean, look at the Sweet Spot, even though Lincoln was the man with the plan, he wasn’t exactly the voice of reason, he was planning on getting the best seat, and it was funny seeing him brawl with his sisters, especially, that little gag at the end. Also, I’d like to point out that AppleJack, Ice Bear, Anais, and Squidward (I don’t know who Simmons is) are the main characters of their respective shows, granted they don’t show up as much as the others, but they are part of the main cast. And the shows are not boring because the characters are great to watch.

Okay, maybe I was a bit too harsh on Lincoln. I simply just don't find him as interesting as other main protagonists. I also don't really care too much about relatability either. If anything, I've had a history of hating characters even more due to relatability. Also, I meant main protagonists, not main characters. Every show has a main cast, but most shows generally have a focal point to revolve around. MLP has Twilight, We Bare Bears has all 3 bears in unison, I.E. not just Ice Bear, Spongebob has... well Spongebob, and Red vs Blue has Church. By the way, that's the show where Simmons is from. Some guy in the comments said it was Hey Arnold!, and I've never seen that show.

So yes, they are the main characters, but they're not focused on NEARLY as much as Lincoln, relatively speaking.

Even The Loud House admits Lincoln has no character. In Ties That Bind, every tie connected to a sister's personality in some way. But because Lincoln has no personality, they had to say "the white hare". Get it? Because Lincoln has white hair and the tie is a bunny? Gotta love that misunderstanding plot.

OK, I think you’re looking way too deep into that.

Eh, I can't help it. I'm a bit of an exaggerator. Plus I think it's kind of funny.

For the most part, Lori's a pretty shallow character with painfully vapid dialogue, and when she finally has a whole episode dedicated to her, Lori's motivation is to beat another girl at getting the best selfies. Okay, Panda from WBB may be a phone hoard, but at least his interest in technology isn't rubbed into our faces obnoxiously. He even serves as a way to show all the benefits of technology. What benefits does Lori show for owning a phone? It gives you the means of defeating your self proclaimed rival for your own petty needs? Like, whatever. I literally couldn't care le- DANG IT! She's got me doing it!

OK, first off, Lori has had a few episodes dedicated to her. (The Waiting Game, Party Down, Garage Banned), and while I will admit, she started out bad, the episodes in parentheses along with other episodes showed us that Lori is fun girl, who loves her family. Also, her motivation in Selfie Improvement, wasn’t exactly petty, Carol had beaten her at everything single thing she tried to do, so she felt insecure and inadequate.

You're definitely right about Garage Banned, Party Down is debatable, and The Waiting Game is as much of a Lori episode as For Bros About to Rock is a Luna episode. She's certainly featured in it, but we all know it's supposed to be more Clincoln McCloud.

*skipping*

Pretty standard stuff beyond that like playing instruments and being easily the loudest and most annoying member of the cast. Nika Futterman is a fine voice actress whom I have nothing against, but she can't sing, and her freakouts are much better suited to characters like Sticks the Badger.

OK, first of all, she can sing, and second, her voice isn’t that annoying! Seriously, I’ve heard much worse.



Sorry, but my ear replacement surgery bill begs to differ. I'm glad you like her voice though.

And I guess you could claim that she's so awesome because she's passionate about her work, but so is Luan. Also, are we just gonna forget that she nearly killed Lily by trying to stage dive on her? How has that not been a heavy topic of discussion?!

It was one time! In one episode! She’s had plenty of better appearances.

I don't really have much of a defense for this one. I just like being an ass h***. Plus I don't like the thought of my favorite sister being slammed into mush potentially.

Speak of the devil. Luan, funnily enough, went from being my favorite sister to my least favorite over the course of the show. She is not a funny comedian. Her role in the show is comic relief, yet she's easily the most boring character of the cast. All she does is tell lame puns one after the other.

She is not a good antagonist. It makes no sense why she'd be so evil on one day of the year towards her family. The crap she puts her family through not only makes her look terrible, but it makes everyone else look like idiots. How does she have this much control exactly over a house of 12 others? Someone please explain to me how they've never realized their obvious advantage in numbers and just did this? (He shows a clip from Babysitting Satan.)

OK, 1, Of course they’re not gonna do that! This is a kid’s show! 2, They’re not idiots, they’re being safe. Luan is pretty powerful. And 3, I really like Luan in the April Fool’s Videos, it was only for one day, and she can do some pretty funny shenanigans, and also seeing her get her comeuppance is fun to watch as well.

1. Chill man, it's just a joke. Of course I wouldn't want to actually see them do it, just the thought of it is hilarious to me. Like a classic Robot Chicken skit. 2.Why though? Why does Luan have so much power over them? Again, she's just a kid. What am I missing here? 3. A list of her comeuppances.

April Fools Rules: Getting pied in the face. Um... fine?

A Fool's Paradise: Her family pranks her back, but she vows revenge anyway causing them all to flee. Hello stinger ending.

Fool Me Twice: I can kind of live with this one. Too bad the rest of the episode didn't work.

Lynn

(He shows a clip of Jontron saying "You're a (Censored)".)

Oh for the love of- Okay, why do so many people have this vendetta against Lynn?! She is not that bad! Yeah, she can roughhouse, but she doesn’t have any malicious intent or anything. And yes, while No Such Luck, was her worst appearance ever, she’s had other good episodes, Lynner Takes All and Net Gains show us that Lynn does know when she messes up, and feels sorry for it.

I'm a little torn on this one. No, not whether or not Thomper is right. I'm torn on whether I should elaborate about my thoughts on Lynn. I feel like it would kind of ruin the joke of me leaving this clip in her section and nothing else. In fact, it's one of my favorite moments as a reviewer. I don't wanna take that magic away from myself! Let's just say Lynn may not be the worst character, but she's definitely the worst Loud sister in my eyes.

*skipping*

Lily

I'm sure many of you thought I was joking when I said Lily was my favorite TLH character. Well, do you believe me now? Lily is friggin' adorable, and that's basically all you need for me to care so much about her.

Wow, you and Adish would be buddies for sure.

Now I kind of want to meet this person.

When I saw how sad she was in The Crying Dame, I felt a part of my heart shrivel up inside. Lily is a shining star on this show, and she's not even my favorite baby character. Not even in the top 5. Those spots belong to The Boss Baby (not kidding), Charlie from Good Luck Charlie, Jack Jack, Pumpkin and Pound Cake, and Flurry Heart, the latter of which makes me feel like a narrator trying to keep a straight face while voicing a documentary about a house cat.

If i were a nature documentary narrator-0

If i were a nature documentary narrator-0

What about Maggie from the Simpsons? She’s a good baby character.

Sigh. I really need to watch The Simpsons.

*skipping*

Let's take a look at two other simple shows: We Bare Bears and Community. The former is one of the most charming cartoons airing, using simplicity to its advantage in order to be more entertaining, having a cast that's both likable and has enough breathing room, and the atmosphere is so much more inviting and soothing than the all the screaming and poop jokes found in TLH.

OK, the two things you just said are not that frequent in the show.

Well it certainly feels like it. But I guess that's just my problem.

*skipping*

Speaking of George and Harold, you know how I said their friendship was the heart of Captain Underpants and how every second they're onscreen together is like a drop of heaven? I feel none of that towards Clinlcoln McCloud episodes. These two just lack the same kind of chemistry that makes me want to root for them to be together. Instead of joy, I feel confusion whenever they get more screen time. Remember when Tricked! came out and how most people focused on the stuff the sisters were doing? Funny how 60% of the episode was spent following these two go against the stock bullies.

Did you watch “Deal Me Out”? If not, you should definitely watch that episode, It’s one where Lincoln and Clyde start to worrying that they may be too old for Ace Savvy, and we get to learn that Ace Savvy was a huge part of their life, it’s even how they met, Lincoln and Clyde ran into each other on Halloween, dressed up as Ace Savvy and One-Eyed Jack, respectively. This episode made care for Lincoln and Clyde, just as much as I cared about George and Harold.

I did not nor do I have any immediate plans to. I'm done with this show. I wouldn't even be talking about this show right now were it not for your response. I'm sure Deal Me Out is a great episode, but a person's gotta know the difference between watching a show for fun and watching a show out of obligation.

*skipping*


And I sure wouldn't be harping on this if Change of Heart actually CHANGED CLYDE'S HEART!!!! It didn't even do what it said it would do. Clyde wanted to be a normal kid, but the writers decided that was just too essential of a character trait for him to lose. I can see why. After all, I literally can't think of any other traits he has. Also, I can't be the only one who thinks Clyde is only friends with Lincoln just to get closer to Lori right? I mean, he did say this when Lincoln was being ostracized by his whole class for not having a green house after all.

Clyde: I'll still hang out with you. In secret, of course. After dark.

That is NOT what real friends do. I don't care if it's meant to be a joke. Not every line in this show has to be a JOKE! And you also don't have to say the same joke twice in the same episode. I'm pretty sure comedy comes in three's you guys.

OK, now that is just cruel. First, you should at least acknowledge that Clyde made an effort to try and change, and there was no way he was prepared for what happened. Second, Clyde is not just friends with Lincoln to get with Lori, he’s friends with Lincoln, because they’re true friends, and they have a long history together. And yes, that line Clyde said in TGH was really bad, like really bad, but like I said about Lun stage diving on Lily it was one time, in one episode.

*sucks teeth* I think I might've gone too far on this one. Let me try to extend an olive branch. You're right. Clyde did indeed try to change his heart. I can acknowledge this. But if I can own up to this, don't you think you could also acknowledge that the ending to that episode was kind of bull s***? And I'm not even really blaming Clyde here. I feel bad for the poor kid! Why can't this show just let him have a normal relationship with Lori?

As for the friends with Lincoln thing, I think we've already acknowledged that I have a tendency to look too deeply into things. It's a flaw, I know, but at the same time, I kind of like doing it because it gives new perspectives on a piece of art that most of the time the artist didn't intend. Once again, we can chalk this up to me being an ass h***.

And three, I tend to focus on the worst of a character when giving a negative review. It's the best way to show off just how low these guys can go. Plus, I don't really have many positive moments to go off of, so it's my own problem.

*skipping*

I don't see how that makes her worthy of a spin-off show that will only last a season. Or at least as long as that other spin-off show.

I’m pretty sure people won’t really watch the spinoff for Ronnie Anne, they’ll probably watch it for her family. I noticed this guy didn’t talk about Bobby, Maria, or any of the Casagrandes, and that’s a shame, because they are really good characters, and they’re all better than Ronnie Anne. But even then, she was still a good character in The Loudest Mission: Relative Chaos. She was forced into moving without any prior knowledge before, and when she really liked her own home, and wanted to go back, but when she saw how her family really cared about her, and all pitched in to make her room, she realized even though the change was sudden, it would be okay, and kudos to Lincoln for sharing his fourth wall knowledge with her.

I could not be more indifferent to her family if I tried. And because I don't like Ronnie Anne, I didn't really find myself rooting for her all too much.

At this point, I don't think I'll ever like Ronnie Anne. I don't even think I can tolerate her. I'm not gonna be immature and wish death upon her, but I think I at least deserve to get one punch in. Just one? Please? I'll even give her a slab of meat to heal. After all, that is the cure-all for punches right? It must be, it's the only explanation for why every cartoon says it is.

You know what, I totally wouldn’t mind if you did that. In fact, I can make something for you to do that.

Ronnie Anne punching bag

Here. It’s a Ronnie Anne punching bag. You can print it out and use it however you like.

*gasp* For me?! Wow, thaanks!!!! I'm just happy you were okay with me saying this. One of the comments in this guy's review literally says this.

"uhh.. death? really? this guy thinks Ronnie Anne deserves death? WTH?"

Did this f***er even read my review? Specifically the part where I said, "I'm not gonna be immature and wish death upon her?" Thanks for defending me though Thomper.

The animation also has a pet peeve of mine. I mentioned this earlier, but I'm not a big fan of characters with sticks for bodies. Stuff like Total Drama and Teen Titans Go simply don't work for me in terms of design. If I can imagine myself touching my thumb to my index finger and being able to fit it around a character's waist with room to spare, then the art style kind of bothers me. ASDF characters have more dimensions than this show.

OK, once again, I disagree with you completely. Not only are the characters really easy to draw, like I said before, the designs are pretty diverse. No two characters look alike. Same thing goes for TD and TTG. Look at the character designs and tell me that the characters look similar to each other.

Now up to this point, this guy's arguments have been pretty sound, but here it feels like he didn't even read my comment properly. Not once did I say that all the designs looked the same. I specifically stated my problem was that they looked like stick figures. Same goes for most of the characters in the other shows too.

Granted not every single character from these shows have sticks for bodies, but that's why I was advocating for different body sizes. When I look at these characters, I think one of two things. Their necks are gonna snap from the weight of their heads, or they should be falling over from top heaviness and roll around a little with their bodies sticking straight up, kind of like one of those dummies that never stays down when you punch it. It just bugs the heck out of me. Also, saying it's easier to draw is more of an excuse than a defense.

*skipping*

Remember when Lincoln spent all his time on a project and because of an explosion his grade went down? That wasn't funny. Remember when the family finally started having fun in their pool, but Lily pooped in it? That wasn't funny.

OK, you are kinda right, but I do have to point out something. Even though Lincoln’s grade got docked down. It was only docked down to an A-.

I've heard that a couple of times about the A- thing and how it's not that important. But like with any stinger ending, it doesn't negate the fact that it dampens the mood right before the cut to commercials. Also, grades have always been super important to me. This is where that relatability problem I was talking about earlier rears its ugly head.

There's also plenty of other moments delegated to other characters: Rita would rather have community service then deal with her family, Lucy getting constantly ignored, any Luan pranking episode, Luna's out of nowhere 180 turn attitude in House Music, and countless other moments.

OK, let me stop you on your first point: Rita is the mother of 11 kids!! And did you not see the montage in the beginning or the scene where the chaos was unfolding? Rita wasn’t abandoning the her family, she just needed to take a break from them.

I know that's why she did it, but that doesn't justify her resorting to breaking the law just to take a break. I know I'm not a mom, but surely there have to be other ways to get some personal time, right? And think of it this way. When given a choice between spending time in jail and doubling down on her duty as a mother.... she chose jail. And before you say anything, I know she technically learned her lesson. I'm just saying.

Everything is predictable. It was so obvious in Baby Steps that Clyde wouldn't have a brother. It was so obvious in Teacher's Union that the coach wasn't some big shot. It was so obvious in Roadie To Nowhere that Chunk wasn't homeless. It was so obvious in L is for Love that the letter wasn't for any of the Loud siblings. It was so obvious in City Slickers that Lori would hate the city. I know that comedies don't, and honestly shouldn't, have complex stories, but these plots are so much more annoying when the comedy doesn't work. This show doesn't have the luxury of telling one sentence plots like Gumball or Spongebob because there's not enough cleverness to the situations or dialogue to make up for the predictability.

OK, call me an idiot, but I didn’t see any of those twists you listed coming, well, I had my suspicions about Clyde getting a baby brother, but the rest, I didn’t know. This is a problem I’ve realized I have. Most people will say they knew an obvious plot twist, but for some reason, I almost never see them. Like in the Incredibles 2, people kept saying that they knew that the Screenslaver was Evelyn, but I didn’t. I thought it was Winston. Weird, I know. Anyway, getting back on track, I know these stories are predictable to others, but what makes them enjoyable to me, is what the characters get out of it; seeing Clyde getting the confidence to be a great big brother, seeing Coach Pacowski getting a partner out of Nurse Patti, seeing Luna realize that she doesn’t have to worry about not making it in the future, seeing the LKs (especially Luna) learning they shouldn’t be shy in showing their affections for someone, seeing Bobby comfort Lori and telling her everything would be ok. These conflicts got very satisfying resolutions, and I was happy with where the characters got.

Mate, let me be honest here, I freaking WISH I could be like you. Not knowing what's gonna happen makes stories a million times more interesting. But gosh darn it, I'm turning 19 and yet I already feel like a cynical curmudgeon when it comes to being desensitized to plots. It sucks!!! Also, Coach pretty much tried to kill Lincoln and Clyde. And he deserves a happy ending why?

*skipping*

You've made our point scene, everyone is annoyed. Get on with telling a story please!

Come on, dude. That scene only took up a few seconds of your life. It’s not that bad.

When an episode is 11 minutes long, Every. Second. Counts.

RB'sB: That grammar was terrible.

Shut up. My point is that you need to spend your time wisely, otherwise the pacing will become a mess.

*skipping*

Butterfly Effect - Pretty much everything.

That was my favorite episode.

I hate episodes that turn out to not matter at all.

*skipping*

A Fair To Remember
 - DUMB!

One of the most unpopular opinions I’ve seen.

Why does no one notice Clyde? How has Clyde stayed asleep the whole time? How does Lori do anything here? I haven't seen this episode in forever, so don't worry about this point too much.

Vantastic Voyage
 - Why are you guys keeping this terrible van if Lynn Sr. already learned his lesson? And I will cut a fool if anyone says "sentimental value". IT DOESN'T WORK!!!

Why not?

"Come on kids! Let's go get our old van that never works and is all around just awful back!"

"But Dad, why don't we just keep this one that actually works? You've clearly learned to accept letting us get it dirty, so what's the point of getting back a van that doesn't w-"

"SHUT UP, SENTIMENTALITY!!!"

You can fill in the holes.

*skipping*

Back Out There - I hate this. I hate this. I hate this. Also, I'm pretty sure Ronnie Anne committed mail fraud.

What about the great moments between Lincoln and his friends?

[link]

*skipping*

or president of Aruba! Side note: I can't tell you guys how happy I am that the President of Aruba's name's Mike.

Uhhhh, Okay.

Okay, that one was a Game Grumps reference.



Change of Heart - Stop playing with this poor kid's emotions.

Hey, Lori realized her mistake, if that’s what you were referring to.

Actually I was more so referring to the writers.

*skipping*

Sound of Silence - Finally, Lincoln getting punished for a good reason.

No, he doesn’t!

Soooo, he didn't deserve punishment for blatantly ignoring his sisters and even going as far as turning the volume on his ear phones up when one of them tried to ask him a question? There's a difference between wanting alone time and straight up blocking people out.

*skipping*

Head Poet's Anxiety - Quick bro, get the camera! There's actually a good season 3 episode!

Um, what about:

Tripped!, Insta-Gran, No Place Like Homeschool, Net Gains, Fandom Pains, The Mad Scientist, Deal Me Out, Shop Girl, Gown and Out, Breaking Dad and Be Stella My Heart?

Like I said, get the camera.

Aaaand we're done! Never thought I'd make a journal like this ever. I guess that's what happens though when you say you don't like shows like The Loud House.

I'd like to once again thank Thomperfan for being such a good sport here. You sir would make a great ambassador for the Loud House fandom.

If you wanna read the full review, just click on this link. theloudhouse.wikia.com/wiki/Us…

Until next time mates, stay frosty, and prepare your butts for my next review. Things are about to get weird!!!


  • Listening to: Cool Patrol
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: Dragon Ball Z Abridged
  • Playing: N Sane Trilogy
  • Eating: Cookie
  • Drinking: Milk
Damn, it sure has been a while since I've written one of these hasn't it? I guess I've been a little sidetracked with all the other projects that came my way.But hey, I'm finally bringing it back, and it's time to talk about a wide range of weird and familiar animated flicks!

Hotel Transylvania 2

Funny to think about how Hotel Transylvania is technically the first film I've ever reviewed in my life. I guess that means it should hold a special place in my heart, but that would kind of be stretching considering the movie we actually have. Nevertheless, it was still a very good family film with high energy animation, likeable characters, and occasional bouts of emotion.

The second film is almost is exactly the same as the first. And no, I don't mean in terms of sequelitis, no animated film could ever top Toy Story 3 in that department. What I mean is if you loved the first movie, then you'll more than likely have the same exact reaction.

Anything I could say about the animation here would just be repeating myself a lot from last time, and this is to be expected. But hey, not everybody read my first review, so I'll briefly touch on the animation. A lot of people are turned off by the zany and fast pace of this franchise, especially when compared to calmer films from Disney or Pixar. But those people also tend to forget that animated movies are in fact cartoons. Meaning "too cartoon-y" is a stupid as Hell complaint to thow at these films especially when it's clear that the animation had so much effort put into it.

The voice cast all return from the first with the exception of Ceelo Green, who is now voiced by the Key half of Key and Peele. I'm definitely okay with this recast, especially given how much I love Keegan Michael Key. Both him and Jordan Peele have a great understanding of voice acting and fit their roles very well. Plus it's nice to give the cast breathing room from pop stars, especially given how we already have Selena Gomez in here. Adam Sandler, like before, gives a scary good performance as Dracula, and it's so pleasing to see how well he fits the role.

One thing this film adds to the mix is much more chemistry and banter between Dracula and his friends. I'm sure it helps that Sandler is friends with these guys in real life, but this film takes their bond to the next level. Most of the funniest jokes come from the road trip they go on, especially when they're all trying to scare people and we quickly realize that these guys aren't in their prime anymore.

But you know what else this film adds that's surprisingly really well written? Commentary on racism. That's right, this film goes that route. And if you ask me, it's handled better here than in Zootopia for a couple reasons. For one, we get a bunch of small hints toward what they're going for, such as the scene where Mavis meets her boyfriend's parents, and then a neighbor comes over with a sea creature for a husband, and they talk about how it's started to become more accepted around the neighborhood. Yeah, it's pretty easy to guess what they're going for. But they never get annoying about it.

Don't get me wrong, I love Zootopia, but even the most hardcore fans have to admit that the message could get a little draining after a while. Honestly, if the dialogue wasn't so funny I don't know how well it would actually hold up for me. But another thing is that racism isn't really the same as speciesism, so the message kind of loses a little punch in the context of the universe. Not to mention how Zootopia treats its message as one of the most important things ever and how it's a serious blight on society both in universe and in our own. If that's the case, then why does everything seem to be resolved completely by the end? You can preach about anti-racism all you want out here, there are still going to be way too many stragglers to speak of. In this film, the racism commentary is more believable because it's a bit more of a side plot, and there's only one character whose mind actually gets changed as opposed to an entire population.

Enter Dracula's dad, a character that for some reason gets introduced in the last 20 minutes of the film but still manages to be one of the most well written characters here. Considering the fact that he's literally ancient, it makes sense that he would be the bigot of the cast. Let's face it, racism isn't gonna die until a few more generations die first, possibly including our own. With that being said, even though he's discriminatory, he proves by the end that he cares deeply for his family and even saves a human in the process. To summarize, let's just say it makes more sense for one old guy to change his world view with a single action than to say that racism is caused in a society by just one third party character's meddling. I swear, this is Wonder Woman all over again when it comes one person being responsible for a whole war.

Now, like the last film, This one has a few glaring issues that make it less than great. Probably the biggest issue is how obsssive Dracula is as a father. What do I mean by this? Well...

He doesn't let his duaghter kiss her husband at the wedding ceremony.
He sneaks his way into seeing her baby before her.
He manipulates her boyfriend into keeping her busy so that he can kidnap her son.
He constantly puts his grandson in danger, including throwing him off a huge platform (though to be fair he did save him)

You get the idea, he's a bit of a douche. Meaning he doesn't really carry most of his lessons from the first film and almost feels worse. And another thing that bothers me as how they resolve the conflict with Dracula's grandson being a vampire. For now, I'll just say that what happens feels like a super big cop out and kind of instantly resolves any issues way too easily. But like I said, this film is on par with the first film in terms of quality, so I totally recommend for fans of animation and horror. And I'm giving this film an 8 out of 10.



Pinocchio

Last weekend, my mom and I though it would be fun to watch some very old Disney movies that we hadn't seen yet, or at least in a really long time. My family has a pretty strong bond with Disney. We love all of their products one way or another, and it's kind of brought us closer together in a sense. Some nostalgic Disney films for my family include Robin Hood, The Incredibles, Toy Story, Home on the Range (yes really), and biggest of all, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.

But oddly enough, Mom and I managed to skip some pretty big classics. Arguably the biggest of them all, we decided to finally watch Pinocchio. I thought the film was very good..... but it also made me appreciate modern Disney a lot more.

As if it wasn't obvious enough, I have a fairly short attention span. This can sometimes affect the way I view films and shows. As long as my attention is being kept and I'm fully invested, I consider the film to have very good pacing. But a common trope I've noticed with a lot of old Disney films is that it's art first... and story second. Now, this isn't necessarily a bad thing. One could argue that focusing more on the art makes the product objectively better. But just because Pinocchio has some of the best and most timeless animation from Disney's library, that doesn't mean I want to see Gippetto dancing around with a lifeless puppet for what feels like 5 minutes.

This is probably just a me problem, but I come to films for something eventful one way or the other, and while this film certainly has a lot going on, it just feels like a bit of a drag to get there. Not helping is that the art and music makes this feel like a Looney Tunes or Tom and Jerry short kind of, and those shows have incredible pacing, albeit from being a lot shorter.

This next section is one that I can't take credit for as it was pointed out by my mom. The whole film is about Pinocchio learning to be a real boy and not to give in to temptation. The film even goes as far as to turn all the bad little boys into donkeys that are put to work and never f***ing seen from again. Like, what the f***ing f*** Disney! But that's not what my mom pointed out.

If Pinocchio is learning how to be a real boy, then why is he constantly portrayed as in the wrong like he brought his misfortune upon himself? He's a little 5-6 year old kid. Actually, no, scratch that. He's barely even a day old! How the Hell is he supposed to defend himself when two con artists come up to him and essentially kidnap him? He sort of comes willingly the first time, but the second time there's no denying it. This kid gets f***ing kidnapped. You could say that he should've listened to his conscience, but Jiminy is kind of the worst. Sorry man, you have a lovely singing voice and get occasional laughs, but that blue fairy really should've been more stingy about her choosing.

With all that said, I think I should make it clear that I don't in any way dislike this movie. It could just be that I'm a spoiled modern cartoon kid whose Aspbergers doesn't make him a valid critic, but I don't think this film is quite as good some of Disney's other classics. My mom and I thought it was very cute and cinematically beautiful, but we likely don't need to see it again. And I'm giving this film a 6.5 out of 10. Also seriously, what the f*** happened to those poor ki-?!



Rise of the Guardians

It's no secret that I'm particularly harsh towards DreamWorks films. Not only are they pretty much a watered down version of Disney, a lot of the worst tropes of modern animated flicks can be traced back to them. Over saturation of colors, no more hand drawn style, obnoxious colloquialisms, celebrity voice actors, and worst of all... the dance number ending.

And with films like Turbo, Shark Tale, Boss Baby, Trolls, and others, it's also no secret that their track record is less than perfect. Hell, some of my favorite DreamWorks films are purely from a so bad it's good standpoint like Monsters vs Aliens and Bee Movie.

But when I saw trailers for Rise of the Guardians, I was a little curious. This seemed to be one of the studio's more dramatic films, along the lines of Prince of Egypt and How to Train Your Dragon. It had many more fantastical elements sorely lacking from other films, and was such a neat idea to begin with. This movie is essentially the Avengers but for holiday icons.

After watching it finally, I must say that I really liked it. What this film sacrifices in exaggerated animation it more than makes up for in imagination and scope. This film goes the Pixar route in taking a popular question and portraying it in a creative yet realistic way that makes you wonder if it actually is the case in real life. Toy Story showed us what toys do when we're gone, Monsters Inc. showed us the inner workings of the monsters in our closets, and Wreck It Ralph made video game characters feel like relatable 9 to 5'ers.

RB'sB: That last one isn't Pixar dude. That was Disney.

Yeah, sure. I bet next you're gonna tell me that Brave was actually Pixar and not another lame Disney princess story. But I digress.

Despite having a cast heavily reliant on celebrities, the script actually gives these actors distinct characters to work with that aren't reliant on the actor's face or obvious voice. Alec Baldwin in particular proves that he can voice characters other than the hardcore business man. This film's version of Santa is one of my absolute favorite portrayals. Despite being an a** kicker, they didn't forget to write a level of wonder and joy in him that he's so beloved for.

The Tooth Fairy was great, the villain was hammy, and even Hugh Jackman manages to hide his voice by, ironically enough, using his regular voice. What can I say? The man is so amazing at the American accent that most of the time I forget he's an Aussie. Same goes for other actors like Emily Blunt and Benedict Cumberbatch. And of course, Jack Frost was the standout character here. His mischievous attitude combined with his tragic back story makes him such a memorable and fleshed out protagonist, and Chris Pine delivers so well here.

I was a little disappointed in how they treated Mr. Sandman's character. For the time he was on screen, I really enjoyed the way he communicated to others with images and never spoke a single word. But then, for whatever reason, they just killed him off, and it felt like the characters got over it almost immediately. He even comes back in the end anyway. All this move tells me is that the writers didn't feel like putting in the effort for a silent character anymore and just wanted to take the easy way out, while at the same time going against what they said they were doing and bringing him back to life anyway. Though to be fair, does anyone actually believe in the Sandman?

Speaking of which, I'm getting a little annoyed by the way we're teaching kids to have faith. It's a good thing to have and can help people through hard times. I mean, I don't really have it, but I know plenty of people that do who are kind of defined by it. But surely there's another way to teach kids about faith that doesn't involve believing in characters that are so obviously not real that it hurts. And unlike religion, learning that characters like Santa don't exist is something that HAS to happen eventually, if not at the expense of one's sanity and inability to grow up. And when you really think about it, this film goes against the rules of faith. It's not until all the holiday icons show up that they're believed in again. I know that seeing is believing, but I highly doubt people like Roman have seen Jesus punch a goth guy so hard that he went up into the sky. He doesn't need to see to believe, and this is a writing trope that needs to be fixed. Hell, even Gumball, freaking Gumball is guilty of this!

Despite those problems, I still very much enjoyed this film, and I believe this one of DreamWorks' better outings in recent years. Though not my favorite one obviously. And I'm giving this film an 8.5 out of 10.



Ratchet and Clank

You all knew I'd be talking about this one ever since the comparison. However, I'd like to keep my thoughts a touch brief here for... something else.

It's kind of hard to be viscerally angry at this film like Home or Shark Tale. This is robably one of the most white noise films I've seen in my life. Even video game movies like Angry Birds have more going for them than this. The Emoji Movie has more going for it even.

A lot of you guys disagreed with me when I said that, but I'm still convicted and sticking to that statement. Yes the Emoji Movie is pointless. Yes it's stupid. And yes it should be called the Emoji Advertisement and not a movie at all. However, to put it simply, the Emoji Movie is at least a f***ing movie. It actually has an original plot with semi original characters. Not so original environments, but still.

Ratchet and Clank on the other hand is just not a movie. It is a collection of badly rendered cutscenes with one of the most by the numbers and bare bones plots a "film" can have. This excuse can work for video games. In one of SailorRWBY's recent journals, he made a fantastic argument about why Nintendo is king. It's because they put gameplay and fun above all else with story being a very low priority. Sure, a video game can have a great story and be even better because of it, but it shouldn't make or break the experience.

And you know what? I played Ratchet and Clank on the PS4. And it, as I said, has nearly every single scene from the movie. But the loose plot didn't bother me because I was having too much fun to even notice. The same cannot be said for the film which, again, is really tough for me to consider a film. Not helping is the fact that the game came out first, making the movie feel even more like a retread. There were so many times during the run time where I said to myself, "Hey, I remember that part of the game. I kind of wish I was playing it instead of slogging through this crap." At least this film does one thing correctly over the Emoji Movie. It actually makes me want to play the thing it's based on.

What's really embarrassing is that the game somehow has a better story than the movie. I'm not even joking. Due to the longer time spent with it, I felt much more connected to the characters in ways that the film couldn't even hope to replicate. Not to mention more interesting plot lines and a really creative way of having Qwark tell the story from his perspective. I loved all the jail scenes and hearing the captain's narrations. Qwark in the movie didn't even get sent to jail. He certainly should've though for stealing the spotlight!

It's called Ratchet and Clank and yet a majority of the run time is spent with either Qwark, the villains, or Ratchet and Clank painfully being away from each other in some way. It sucks because these two clearly have chemistry. The more bearable scenes of this movie are the ones where it's just the two of them. James Arnold Taylor and David Kaye have been working with each other for years, so of course these scenes would turn out at the very least decent. But these moments are so few and far between that I question why the Hell the film is named after them.

There are a few more things I'd like to talk about, but for now I leave you with this. At least Home got a reaction out of me. This is a film that was forgotten the moment it  came in theaters and.... what was I talking about again? *reads notes* Oh right. That. And I'm giving this film a 3 out of 10.

101 Dalmatians

And now we end on the other classic Disney flick I watched with my mom, and we actually enjoyed this one quite a bit more.

This film came out around the time Disney films had to make their productions super cheap and rely on more sketch-like animation and even sometimes reusing old movements to save more time. While these films aren't quite as cinematic and fluid as most Disney films, they still have a certain charm to them.

Plots were much more low in scale, and for the most part these movies were chill as f***. Not the most engaging most of the time, looking at you Aristocats, but still charming in their own right.

Being a primarily British product, it comes with that same level of wit and chillness that most British products are known for. Not to the point where I fall asleep, but relaxing enough to where I'd want to watch again simply for the voice acting alone. I also appreciate how well the animation and sound design managed to accurately portray dogs. After working with animals all Summer, I can attest that the artists clearly did their homework. 

Not only does 101 Dalmatians have this element, it's also possibly one of the cutest f***ing things I've ever seen. And not sickeningly cute to where you want to barf. Just the right amount to where you root for the dogs to make it out with the skins on their backs. Literally.

When people do a list of animated parents, I'm shocked that no one ever mentions Pongo and Perdita. These two are role models when it comes to how to write dedicated parents. When they find out their kids have been taken, they do not rest until they've gotten all 15 of them back. Not only that, but they're even kind enough to take in 84 more that are threatened with the same fate as their kids.

And you know what, their "pets" are sweethearts too. Roger and Anita are a darling on screen couple, Nanny is a pleasure as well, and Roger himself really shines during he film's most iconic moment, the song "Cruella De Vil." I love when Disney gets super jazzy with their work. There's so much energy and instrumentals involved that make it a lot of fun to listen to.

Speaking of Cruella De Vil, I suppose I should talk about that character that everyone talks about from this movie. Cruella De Vil! She's... not bad. I mean, I like her design, her actress is wonderful and chews the scenery deliciously, but surprisingly, she wasn't really that prominent. So I guess she didn't leave much of an impression on me.

Now her henchmen on the other hand absolutely did. How come thse guys get shafted when it comes to memorable villains? I thought they were really funny! In fact, I bet this is where the cliche of two thugs (one rough and skinny, the other dumb and fat) originates from. Despite being lazy, they're pretty good at their jobs and manage to be scarier then Cruella at times. Well, except for that one face she makes. You know the one.

Image result for cruella deville

They also have really funny lines! In the scene where the dogs disguise themselves as Labradors by covering themselves in soot, this happens.

Horace: Say Jasper, do you think the dogs disguised themselves?

Jasper: Saaayyy, you're right Horace! Dogs is always coverin' 'emselves in black soot. You idiot!

But the real reason my mom and I really liked this film is because it celebrates decency for the sake of it. All along the way, Pongo and Perdita get help from fellow dogs and other animals who help just for the sake of it, expecting no reward. Cows let the puppies drink their milk, dogs guide them through harsh conditions, and even the cat of this film is one of the bravest characters here. Take that "all cats are evil" cliche! Go die in a barn fire!!!

By the way, we got both Disney films from our local library, and they were both super glitchy. For this film, it kept jumping forward in time, to the point where we only ended up seeing 20 minutes of an 81 minute film. Pinocchio wouldn't even go to the menu. Luckily we managed to get a hold of two other copies, and seeing the whole film makes the ending a thousand times more satisfying after seeing all the s*** those poor dogs went through. And I'm giving this film a 9 out of 10.

I'll be sure to get back on top of that Weirdmaggedon review. Until next time...


  • Listening to: Cool Patrol
  • Reading: Journal 3
  • Watching: Gravity Falls
  • Playing: N Sane Trilogy
  • Eating: Sandwich
  • Drinking: Water
*continued from my NSP Chronicles journal which you should definitely totally check out cool byyyeee*

???: All right come one, we're almost there.

You know I'd be walking a lot smoother if I didn't have this bag over my head.

???: Hey man, I'm under strict orders to make sure you don't know where we're going. Besides, we'll be there in a minute.

You've been saying that for the last-

???: We're here.

Oh. Uuuhhh, cool I guess. *sound removing a bag makes* Wait a minute, do I know you?

TRADE: No, but I'm sure you've heard about me.

Yeah, now I know! You're that guy and/or woman that works for Mike the Human... sort of. Do you mind me asking what you are?

TRADE: Well I'm a Libra, but that's not important right now. My boss needs to have a word with you. It's about your content lately.

What about it?

Mike: You need to freaking speed things up!

Whoa! :iconmikethehuman113:? Like, the actual, for real Mike and not just me typing and pretending to have a conversation with you in some made up scenario?

Mike: That's right Bro. Still not over that dumb stunt you pulled, but I'm putting that behind me now. It's your content.

My content? I think it's been... fine lately. Sure, things could be coming out faster, but I'm about to finish that Gravity Falls list, I'll be doing my 100 watcher special at some point, and I even did a whole thing telling you guys about Ninja Sex Pa-

Mike: That's another thing man. No offense, but you need to shut the Hell up about NSP. I like them as much as the next guy, but they're not the only comedic musical duo that tells d*** jokes all the time. It's time for you to focus on bigger fish, like that Weirdmaggedon review!

Why does everybody keep assuming I'm gonna review Weirdmaggedon?! I'm not always that predictable you know!

Mike: Well, considering you're the guy who considers Emergency to be one of the best We Bare Bears episodes ever, I believe you. But let's face it man, there's not exactly a whole lot of options left, especially with shows like Gravity Falls with so much quality and so little quantity.

Okay fine. So what, you brought me all the way out here, wait. Where is here?

Mike: Sorry, but I can't tell you. Excuse me for being a little paranoid recently, but that tends to happen when you get doxxed. Seriously, what kind of monster would spam comments detailing all your personal information?

Oh yeah, I wonder who did that.

TRADE: Yeeaahh, I wonder....

Mike: ... Well anyway, I didn't just bring you out here to tell you to get off your a**. I'm gonna help you!

You are gonna help me? That's why you brought me out here.

Mike: Well yeah, that's why you're here.

RB'sB: *muffled* Well why am I here?!

Mike: Good question. TRADE, the f*** is this?

TRADE: No witnesses obviously.

Mike: Ugh, whatever. Just entertain him or something. Carrick and I have a lot of work to do!

You know you could've just DM'ed me ri-

TRADE: Fine! Enjoy doing school work for an hour. I'm gonna take his brother to go see Happytime Murders. It looks awesome!

RB'sB: *muffled* Help meeee-

Mike: Eh, I'm sure he'll enjoy it. Let's get started!

Seriously, we both have Discor-

Mike: This is Weirdmaggedon!!!


RB: Before we get into the meat of things, I think it's imperative that we do a quick retrospective of a previous episode, namely Dipper and Mabel vs the Future. The events of this episode are ridiculously important to the context of what follows, especially when it comes to defending you know who. Essentially, after another excursion with great uncle Ford, Dipper was offered the opportunity of a lifetime to work with him as an apprentice.

Meanwhile, Mabel is trying to make plans for their 13th birthday, but no one seems to be available due to prior engagements, and it feels like the whole world is telling her that growing up is the worst. The only consolation she seems to have is that Dipper would still be there for her. But then, in one fell swoop, this gets turned upside down after she overheard Dipper agreeing to stay in Gravity Falls and essentially abandon her. With all that in mind, can you really blame the poor girl for making a deal with Blendin to make Summer last forever? And how was she to know it was Bill? It just goes to show how crafty of a bad guy he is. Okay, I think we're ready to talk about the actual episode now that the context is over with.


Mike: Which is good, since there is a loooooooooooot to talk about. This is a journey of sheer, unbridled madness. Your worst nightmares, and even your best dreams, come to life. A battle for the ages pitting all the citizens of Gravity Falls against the demon known as Bill Cipher. And...you already know all of this since you've likely seen the episode already. Let's just..let's just start then.


RB: We start off appropriately right where the last one left off with Bill relishing in his recent victory. Now that he's no longer limited by he lack of a physical body, we can finally see the full potential of his power. Needless to say, it's quite weird!


Mike: Mabel is the first victim of all of this trauma, and is sealed in a bubble with her symbol, the shooting star, on it. We won't be getting to that till part two, but for now, here's some nightmare fuel from Pacifica's father!


RB: And that's only a fraction of what Bill does in this episode. He creates bubbles of pure madness, melts statues and buildings, turns people to stone, and he even has an entire posse of interdimensional nightmares he calls his friends (who pretty much are there for fighting fodder, but that's okay).


Mike: Cementing just how powerful he's become at this point, when we get to the theme song, it's completely and utterly f*cked up. Hey, what is this? Why am I being censored like Ryan Reynolds in that one Honest Trailers video?


RB: Oh yeah, sorry about that mate. My page has some rules about that. Look at it this way, you can say whatever you want and no one will be any the wiser!


Mike: Oh, this is perfect! Because I have about a ten-hour long paper detailing the state of this country and-


 ...Plebians... But anyway, when we get to the theme song, we see that it's completely f*cked up. All the main characters we've known and loved are replaced by Bill's lackeys (we even see Dipper's skeleton at one point... shudder), Bill's eye is everywhere, everything's on fire, and there's so many blink-and-you miss it Easter eggs it would take an eternity to mention them all. The backwards music certainly isn't helping...(edited)


RB: I freaking love this intro to pieces. It makes Bill's presence feel so much more in your face and serious. Weirdmaggedon truly feels like an event, and a lot of that comes down to Bill himself as well, which we'll be seeing soon. But yeah, this intro is fantastic! Once it ends, Ford and Dipper get a good look at the damage Bill has caused.
Dipper realizes that the rift must have cracked inside Mabel's backpack since she took the wrong one after being blinded by sadness. But Ford reassures Dipper that the most important thing to do right now is stop Bill first and then save Mabel.


Mike: Meanwhile, we see how Weirdmageddon is affecting Soos, as his Abuelita has been turned into a chair! Though she doesn't really seem to mind all that much. Thankfully, we get another moment of bad*ssery from Soos as he leaves to save his friends in spite of his fear of the unknown.



"Time for a nap." 

RB: Abuelita is a precious f***ing treasure that needs to be protected at all costs. Oh, and you know that goat, whose name is apparently Gompers, that keeps showing up? Welp, he's a giant now, so he can probably eat as many fezzes as he wants. We also get a return of Rumble McSkirmish. Make way for one of the best designed characters on the show everybody!


Mike: Good to know he survived getting zapped by Giffany in a previous episode. Speaking of Gompers, he actually turns out to have quite a bit of significance here, as he inadvertently destroys the prison holding everyone's favorite little freak of nature that we love to hate...Gideon Gleeful. God help us all.

RB: I don't think I've ever seen any kind of relationship before like I have with Gideon and the prisoners. The fact that Gideon took prison and made it a new kingdom for himself essentially is so in character for him. It's certainly better than your run of the mill prison rape joke at least. Seriously, how did they get away with that in PPG?

Mike: 90s, man...they were a different time.

Not only is it a character-building moment for someone we haven't seen since the last season ended (unless you count the Public Access shorts included on the DVD), but it just adds yet another layer to the intensity that we've already established in this episode. We already have Bill running around and turning everything we know and love to stone, so why not add a likely psychotic/sociopathic kid villain from the previous season into the mix? Plus he does hold significance later in the episode, but again, we'll get to that.

RB: 
Well, we did also see him in the Stanchurian Candidate, but I agree with everything else you've mentioned! We cut back to Bill and his cohorts ready to wreak some havoc, while Dipper and Ford take station in a bell tower ready to shoot Bill from a distance with a quantum destabilizer gun. Pfft, freakin' campers.

Mike: 
Unfortunately for them, the bell also gets afflicted by Bill's weirdness and throws off Ford's shot.


"Woohoohoohoohoohoohoohoohoo!! I'm alive now! "

Hey, it may be the end of the world, but at least the show still knows how to make us laugh.

RB: 
I'm glad you mentioned that, because I've been meaning to get something big off my chest. As I'm sure many of you know, I am constantly praising Bill Cipher to high heaven, even going as far as deeming him my favorite male character ever. But, why is this exactly? It's because Bill Cipher is kind of the perfect villain, especially for animation. His powers are immeasurable and capable of pretty much anything, leading to some wonderfully creative visuals. But more importantly, it also makes hims threatening as Hell. Unlike other trickster characters like Discord (even when he was a villain), Bill has no moral standards and does whatever he feels like. You're not gonna get away with that face rearrangement visual on a show like MLP. In a day and age where animated villains are either to silly to be threatening like Gargamel or Ludo, or too serious to be entertaining, like Zarkon or Fire Lord Ozai, Bill strikes the perfect balance by being a energetic riot, while also being downright terrifying at times.

Mike: 
This honestly perfectly captures why he resonates with every fan of the show and why everyone will say he's their favorite villain. Of course, there's a time and place for silly villains and serious villains if done properly, but Bill's sense of humor and what he does is just so dark, especially for a show on Disney. In that sense, he's funny, but he can flip at the turn of a hat to being threatening whenever he deepens his voice and goes all red. Like, look at this scene where he has Ford in the palm of his hands. He turns him to stone and then uses him as a backscratcher! How f*cked up is that?

RB: 
Also, it goes without saying that Alex Hirsch's performance really brings everything together. I may like Ryan Reynolds as much as the next guy, but why couldn't Alex voice Detective Pikachu? That just feels like such a missed opportunity.

Mike: 
And that applies to every VA in this trilogy, though Hirsch's talent can't be overstated. Shortly after petrifying Ford, Bill gets a hold of the three journals, and, without a second thought, burns them to ashes. The very objects that we've been following since the start of the series, and that have helped the characters through so many situations, just gone like that. You can really hear the distress in Jason Ritter's voice when Dipper witnesses this.

RB: 
I was in utter shock when I saw this for the first time. It's like seeing the library get destroyed in Twilight's Kingdom. Something that's felt like second nature to us all this time just snatched from under our feet in an instant. I can still remember that moment as if it happened yesterday.



Though I could be remembering it wrong.

Mike: No, you've remembered it perfectly, clearly. :P

RB: 
As is par for the course with most villains, Bill Cipher leaves the disposal job of our hero to his lackeys and leaves. Though to be fair, if I was in Bill's position, I'd be pretty overconfident myself. Dude is essentially the devil and has the entire town in the palm of his hand.

Three days have past of nonstop chaos, and we get a good idea of the horror that's been unfolding thanks to some wonderful sweeping shots as well as matter of fact narration from the town news.

News Reporter: I'm Shandra Jimenez, and I ate a rat for dinner.

Still funny.

Mike: As Dipper calls in vain for Mabel on his walkie-talkie, he notices a possible safety refuge in the mall, but not before getting pursued by the Horrifying Sweaty One-Armed Monstrosity! Voiced by...oh...voiced by Louis CK...uh...you wanna take this for me?

RB: 
On it mate. As I'm sure many of you know, 2016 was known as the year of celebrity deaths. 2017 was also known as the year of celebrity deaths. Well, not the celebrities themselves, more accurately their careers. Kevin Spacey, Harvey Weinstein, John Lasseter, and even T.J. Miller, another voice on the show. And among those affected was Louis C.K., who I still wholeheartedly believe is one of the funniest living comedians today. Apparently he, ahem, masturbated in front of women that he invited to his hotel room.



Needless to say, his career went up in flames along with so many other accused celebrities, except unlike with other cases, we know for a fact that he absolutely did this. Man, you'd think a guy who constantly pretends to masturbate on stage would be above stuff like this you know?

But not only did his career as a comedian get affected, his career as a voice actor took a massive hit. Not only did he get replaced by Patton Oswalt (another amazing comedian) for his role in The Secret Life of Pets 2, this character's lines got dubbed over by, you guessed it, Alex Hirsch.

While I've been known to be all for the Me Too movement, I'm also known for separating art from the artist, so I don't know if it was entirely necessary to redub this character's lines completely. It's not like we're gonna forget he was in the episode, this is the freaking internet! Besides, his role doesn't really qualify as "significant." So, I guess what I'm trying to say is at least they didn't get rid of the character totally, because he's pretty funny!

So, would you say I covered that nicely?

Mike: I would definitely say so, thank you. Glad we got that out of the way. Moving on with the plot, Dipper narrowly avoids the monster and comes across a totally unsuspicious dish of nachos in the food court. It's a trap, but thankfully one set up by friendly faces Wendy and Toby Determined.

Toby: Don't call me "Toby" anymore. Call me Bodacious T.

Uh...

Wendy: No one will ever call you that.

Thanks, Wendy.

RB: 
I can't be the only one who thought of Tenacious D when he said that. It sounds too similar.

Mike: 
Someone make that fanart of him alongside Jack Black in Tenacious D. That's a challenge, Internet! Get on it!

RB: 
After almost a whole season of doing nothing honestly, it's nice to see Wendy finally back on the front lines to help Dipper out by not only being a bad a**, but also a good friend.

Wendy: Look, dude, it's not over yet. You've beaten Bill twice before, why is this time any different?

Oh, because Bill Cipher has a physical form now and is pretty much the devil?

Dipper: 'Cause then I had Mabel.

Dang, so close.

Mike: 
They're able to spot Mabel's bubble in the distance and start their journey, though elsewhere, we're treated to another scene of just how amazingly sadistic Bill is. The Time Police show up, along with Time Baby, who threatens for Bill to stop, lest he "face his tantrum".

Bill: Oh, no, a tantrum! Whatever will I do about that? HOW 'BOUT THIS?? BOOM. (Vaporizes the Time Baby and the police)

Kryptos: Ah, snap! He just killed Time Baby!

Disney show from the 2010s, people. :o Disney show from the 2010s...

RB: 
Fortunately Blendin survives and uses the opportunity to "get out of time dodge." I can't wait to see how he helps out in the climax!

He doesn't.



Mike: Thankfully, he's the exception, not the rule, as we'll find out with just how many characters are brought back in part 3. For now, Wendy and Dipper come across the abandoned auto mart, but to anyone that's watched the series and knows who owns that mart, we know bad things are a-comin', and the gang gets cornered by Gideon and his prison cohorts.(edited)

RB: Gideon is essentially this show's version of Dennis from the Spongebob Movie. Both do the dirty work that the main villain is above while at the same time being threatening in their own right. I still find it hard to believe that this child is voiced by Flapjack of all people.

Gideon: Under the authority of Bill Cipher, I place you two under arrest! Oh, hi, Wendy! Have we formally met?

He may be evil, but he's still the picture of a Southern gentleman.

Mike: I've never been the biggest fan of Gideon, and more on that in a bit, but if he had to be here for the following fight scene and exchange of dialogue to take place, it's all worth it in my eyes.

Wendy: Cause after I break Ghost-Eyes' arm and steal that key from your neck, I'm gonna wear your butt on my foot like a rhinestone slipper!

If this were an Adult Swim show, you just know she would've said something far more vulgar, but it's still more awesomeness from Wendy, so I can't complain.

RB: 
Also, Gideon's scream sounds exactly like the Pickle Reee guy before he was even a thing. That's just too awesome ^^ And yeah, I'm sure it would've gone something like this. 

Wade Wilson: And once I find him, I'm gonna shoot him in the skull and f*** the brain hole.

Mike: And they both have TJ Miller! IT'S CONNECTED!

RB: 
Does that guy still have a career?

Mike: 
Uh...looks at a poster for The Emoji Movie I'm gonna say no.

RB: Fair enough.

Mike: 
Anyways, Wendy and Dipper escape in a car, with Gideon and the prisoners in hot pursuit.

Ghost-Eyes: You want your baby seat?

Gideon: Yes, please.

Okay, Gideon's not all bad, I'll admit. XD

RB: 
That's the power of Gravity Falls writing for ya! And as if this show was pushing the boundaries enough, the monstrosity guy f***ing eats one of the cars whole. Oh well, he could've done worse things with that one hand of his.



Mike: And now we get into mine and a lot of people's favorite part of the episode: the journey through the bubble field. You wanna take this, Carrick, or do you want me to?

RB: 
I think it's your turn to go on a rave. Besides, I don't know if I could do this scene nearly enough justice.

Mike: 
Thank you, thank you, thank you! I mean... ahem ...moving on. The road ahead of them is littered with unavoidable bubbles , all of which, when driven through, have a drastic visual effect on the characters that travel through them, and, by extension, the episode itself. The first bubble we see Wendy and Dipper drive through turns them into birds with pretty hilarious dialogue to boot.

Dipper: For some reason, I really want worms right now.

Wendy: Eat worms! Fly south! Nest!

Then all of a sudden, with three more bubbles, they become anime characters, made of meat, and even portrayed by their live action VAs, Jason Ritter and Linda Cardellini! It's just so quick and out-of-nowhere that I can't help but see it as easily the crowning moment of funny for the whole episode.

RB: 
Not to mention when Gideon and Ghost Eyes go through some themselves we get a glimpse of them as 3D blocks, women (Tumblr just exploded), and good old fashioned silent cartoons complete with dialogue cards. Gotta love those callbacks.

Mike: 
Like the best car chases, this one ends with them having to jump over a cliff, which the two barely manage, before meeting up with yet another friendly face. It's Soos, looking eerily close to a metaphor for Jesus Christ.

RB: At least it's not as blatant as Man of Steel.

Mike: 


RB: Essentially he's become the desperado of the apocalypse and helps those in need. Considering three days have passed, I'm not surprised that people are already singing songs of Soos's heroism. But the break in action doesn't last forever.

Mike: 
As it turns out the group is surrounded by Gideon and his prisoner jockeys, and this...is kinda where the episode leaves a little to be desired. A very little, mind you, but still a little.

RB: 
I for one am confused by how they managed to get there in the first place.

Mike: 
Uh...I'd say a time traveling wizard, but, well, Bill killed him, as we already saw.

So, Gideon proclaims his victory, and how Mabel is his to keep forever, and whatnot, until Dipper gives him, maybe two lines of encouragement that he probably should've given earlier in the summer, and suddenly Gideon is a good guy now. It's...a bit rushed, is what I'm saying. I feel there could've been more time, or hell, maybe even a separate episode, dedicated to redeeming Gideon rather than two lines.

RB: 
It doesn't really bother me as much considering the context of the episode. This is Weirdmaggedon after all, anything can happen. We also get a bit of a hint in Gideon's voice that the main reason he's doing all this is because he's actually scared of what Bill may do to him. Not to mention the dialogue from before between him and Ghost Eyes that establishes Gideon's doubts in what he's doing, even if it is tiny. Although I would be remiss if this scene could've been fleshed out a bit more.

Mike: And again, it's just the tiniest of nitpicks in what's already shaping up to be a phenomenal end for the show. And apparently had that not happened, Soos was prepared to throw down? Sheesh...but no matter. The good guys and the former bad guys step into Mabel's bubble, unknown, but prepared for whatever dangers they may face.

RB: 
Can't be as horrifying as this guy.


"Anybod- hello! Hey, hey, sir, sir! Eh, false alarm. It's just a bird. Not one person. Not one person has... gotten in my mouth. I don't care anymore. I just... (Sighs, begins to crawl away) I gotta call my mother."

I just can't seem to avoid this guy can I?

Mike: 
So, that's Weirdmageddon, Part 1, also known as the only one without a subtitle for some reason! And, even after heavy scrutiny, I'd say it holds up very well.

RB: 
After a whole season of foreshadowing and hyping this event up as disastrous spectacle, this episode met all expectations and then some. I honestly can't imagine an apocalypse headed by Bill Cipher to go down any other way. It's also equally investing to see how it affects the town and its residents.

Mike: 
And, neither of us mentioned this before, but the episode is really a visual spectacle to behold. Wendy makes a passing remark on how the apocalypse looks like stereotypical rock metal album covers, and while that may be a slight dig, I think it's fitting in an endearing way. So many colors with the bubbles, and the once-quirky town of Gravity Falls being reduced to a barren wasteland set in a perpetual fiery sky was a great touch. There's not a single boring shot in this episode, or the other two for that matter.

RB: 
Hey, if I had to choose the form of my destroyer, I'd prefer going out in style at the very least. But honestly, that was child's play compared to what we have up next on our list. You ready to tackle on of the most controversial episodes of the show?

Mike: 
Ready as I'll ever be, I suppose. Stay tuned, people, as we talk about how Weirdmageddon 2: Escape from Reality is, gasp not that bad (but still a slight step down from the first part)!

RB: This is gonna be fun.


  • Listening to: Cool Patrol
  • Reading: The Rig
  • Watching: Gravity Falls
  • Playing: N Sane Trilogy
  • Eating: Pizza
  • Drinking: Water
Hello all my wonderful followers! As 'm sure most of you are aware, a few nights ago  made a very big deal about how I would be going to one of Ninja Sex Party's concerts in their Tour de Force show. Now, live tours are no stranger to these guys, as they have done plenty of live performances even before collaborating with TWRP. 

However, this is the first time for the to ever perform in New Orleans, which is about five hours away from where I live! I know this sounds far, but it's better than flying out to Detroit or something. The point is that when I found about this, I knew it would be one of my only opportunities to meet my favorite band and hear them play live. 

Obviously my parents were a little hesitant t first, but after a little convincing as well as monetary schmoozing, I was able to convince my dad to take me to New Orleans on August 16. There are two kinds of tickets to buy. There are the General Admissions tickets of course. These cost $30 and grant you access to the stage floor once the doors open at 7:00 CST. This is generally referred to as the mosh pit since it is pretty much a cavalcade of fans bunched altogether in front of he stage. 

But this would be my first concert, and I was bringing one of the most esteemed guests a boy can have, is dad! There's no way I could settle for something like that and call it a day. I knew the day the tickets went live I would have to get th VIP tickets. They cost $69.69 (what else), and grant you early access to the venue, meaning you don't have to wait in a line. You also get to st in the balcony, giving you a bird's eye view of the stage. Not to mention you actually get to sit down and have breathing room, which is always nice.

I haven't even gotten to the best part. Since it's only the VIP guests in the building, there's one more major treat we all get for paying extra. A live QnA session with Dan Avidan and Brian Wecht before the doors open for general admission. Can I get a rock f***?!

The craziest thing is that this almost didn't happen. Once my dad and I arrived in NOLA (that's what we call the city) and checked into our hotel, we made our way over to the Joy Theater to take our place in line. We just didn't realize at first we could go in immediately with our special tickets. Nonetheless, I'm happy we went all around the building to see the fans. You heard me right. All. Around. The building. It was so cool seeing the number of people at the venue, especially since NSP isn't even that big in the south east. This gave me a chance to see all the fans and the wonderful costumes they made. There were some girls who had full on blue leotards just like Danny.

drive.google.com/file/d/1QJT10…
drive.google.com/file/d/1yBVL9…
drive.google.com/file/d/1QJT10…

My dad was happy we went around too because he wanted an idea of what kind of people came to these concerts. There seemed to be a lot of people in their late 20's early 30's, as well as some college kids. This meant I was most likely one of the youngest fans at the event! Luckily an employee eventually came by to check our tickets, and he said we could go ahead inside. Given how the entrance was treated like boarding a plane, I definitely made the right choice by upgrading our tickets. This goes double time when you factor in the QnA.

When I went inside, my stomach felt like a pit. There's always that unavoidable stigma involved when meeting new people, especially when you look up to them. What if I said something wrong? What if they were uptight jerks? What if my dad felt embarrassed to be there? As for that last worry, I kind of lied to you guys. NSP is not my first concert... technically. When I was in kindergarten... I was a huge fan of the Wiggles.

Yeah yeah, get the laughter out of your system. Can you really blame me? These guys had some catchy tunes! I just didn't want my dad to think these guys were as gimmicky and childish as the only other band I've been to live. 

Fortunately, all of those fears I had were immediately assuaged once I saw Danny and Brian in the flesh answering any and all kinds of questions. Even when they're not costumed up and rocking out these two are a riot anyway. They're friendly, they're welcoming, they're down to Earth. They feel like a total antithesis to what you would expect rock musicians to be like in real life. Kind of like the scene from Wayne's World where they meet Alice Cooper. Danny is a sweetheart and super soft spoken just like on the Grumps, and as my dad put it with Brian, this guy feels completely out of place. Between all the high energy and FUBAR being tossed around by all the band mates, Brian's just a normal guy.

He doesn't have an crazy hair cuts or wild personas, he's honestly just a normal dude. After all, not only does he have a wife and four year old daughter, he also used to be a super notable and celebrated theoretical physicist who held research positions at universities like Harvard and Queen Mary University at London. Because of this, Brian might actually be my favorite Grump when it comes to origin alone. It's just so fascinating how prestigious his main source of income used to be, and the fact that he retired to focus solely on NSP and Game Grumps is one of the coolest things I've ever heard.

These guys are so funny even my dad was barrel laughing. Hearing my dad laugh with something I love is one of the most satisfying feelings in the world. In fact, here are some of the best quotes from the QnA session.

Fan: Danny, how do you fix your hear.

Danny: All right, two simple steps. Step 1, get out of bed. Step 2, done! I don't really have a method, this is just pure Judaism at work.

Fan: Would you ever collab with anyone?

Brian: Obviously some dream ones would be Weird Al, but we'd totally be down to collaborate with Sharkman Frank.

Fan: Danny, how are your knees?

Danny: They're fine. I've just been building a bit of a ventilation system in my jeans here, and by the time we're done touring they will be disintegrated. 

Fan: Where's Arin?

Brian: Oh he died. It's no big deal.

Danny: Yeah, he's super dead now.

And here's a little clip of them answering my question about their favorite animated media. I figured you guys might be little interested in this ;)

drive.google.com/file/d/1rUvXO…

After the QnA ended, we went over to the merchandise table where they sold t shirts, beanies, physical CDs, posters signed and unsigned, and even merchandise from the opening act. That's right, NSP and TWRP aren't the only performers here.

After a bit of mingling and and exploring, the concert finally started with one of the most fitting opening acts to ever play in front of a band called Ninja Sex Party. Everyone, I'd love for you to meet Planet Booty.

I may have hardly known them, but I along with the audience was all for their show. It really warms my heart to see people act so welcoming to new people. It's so easy for crowds to dislike and even boo opening acts off the stage simply for not being the main attraction. But everyone went nuts for these guys, ad I honestly can't think of a more worthy group to warm up the crowd. They even bring with them a nice message about body pride and never being afraid of who you are. Not to mention they sound pretty good.

After about thirty minutes (including an odd intermission with no music but ocean noises, odd), TWRP came on stage to get the crowd pumped.

drive.google.com/file/d/1Gu3BW…

For those who don't know, TWRP (or Tupper Ware Remix Party), is another band that recently started collaborating with NSP to help give the instrumentals more weight as well as help with live performances. When these guys joined, the NSP started sounding a lot more professional and became much more capable of funkier sounds. There even a lot of fun all on their own. The members include Doctor Sung (synthesizer and keyboards), Commander Meowch (bass guitar), Lord Phobos (electric guitar), and Havve Hogan (drums).

After about another hour and plenty of awesome build up,  the crowd was finally ready for the main attraction. Ladies and gentlemen, Ninja Sex Party has arrived, and they look fabulous!

They played a wide variety of songs that night. Hits from their original work, cover albums, and even TWRP's very own songs.

But these guys aren't just a musical group. As good as they sound, the comedy comes first and foremost. These guys have fantastic chemistry. Danny and Brian have also clearly been working on their improv skills. You see, a big tradition with NSP now is that if anyone throws something on stage, Ninja Brian will stick in his pants. The record for one of their performances was 85 bras! That's not to say Brian's performance this time disappointed.

drive.google.com/file/d/1npaiP…

Do you see that bulge? That is a bass guitar that one of the audience members handed him. Some way, somehow, he managed to jam the whole thing in there. People also threw socks, credit cards, hats, and a bouquet of roses that turned into a running joke of Brian gifting the same flowers Danny over and over again. I told you these guys were a riot.

There was even an ongoing story involving dinosaurs. I won't spoil it for those who still want to see them live, but here's a little glimpse at what I'm talking about.

drive.google.com/file/d/1ABrJC…

Needless to say, August 16, 2018 will easily be one of the most unforgettable nights of my childhood. I mean, I'm 18, so technically I'm not a child, but I'm also not in college yet, so it counts. I'd even consider it a successful father-son bonding experience as well. If NSP ever does come back to New Orleans, you can count on me coming back for more.

Hey, and while I've got you guys here, I totally recommend you check out their latest album Cool Patrol. It just dropped two days ago, the day after the concert, and it sounds great! It's definitely a step up musically what with TWRP on board. And if the next Starbomb album sounds anything like this, I think we're in for something really special.

Speaking of which, I'm a little disappointed Arin didn't show up to do some songs. But the man's busy, so it didn't really bother me too much. Besides, do I look unsatisfied to you?

drive.google.com/file/d/1-K7M6…

So, that was my experience in New Orleans with Ninja Sex Party! My dad and I had a great time together, the audience was great, the music was exquisite, and I'll definitely take the next opportunity to see one of their shows if I can. As for what to do now, I think I'd better work on- *door knock*. .... huh? I wonder who that could be.

*opens door* Who are you?

???: Let's just say the friend of a friend. Well, not really his friend, more like reluctant acquaintance.

Well what's up?

???: You plan on reviewing Weirdmaggedon right?

Uhhh... maybe? What makes you think that?

???: What other episode could it be dude? The mini golf episode? I'm sure you have plenty to talk about there in just one journal.

*sigh* Fair enough I guess. But why does this guy want to help me, and how do I even know he's real?

???: Come with me, and you'll realize that this guy is totally real and definitely exists just like you and me, but more specifically me.

RB'sB: Well this should be interesting.




  • Listening to: Cool Patrol
  • Reading: The Rig
  • Watching: Gravity Falls
  • Playing: Skyward Sword
  • Eating: Pasta
  • Drinking: Capri Sun
RB'sB: GOLF CART THEFT. BINGO FRAUD. TELLING JOKES THAT JUST GO ON AND ON, I MEAN, I HAVE THINGS TO DO TODAY, REALLY. And there you go!

Wow. That list was so long I actually had time to write this next part.

Number 4/Dungeons, Dungeons, and More Dungeons


That's right, I use the Oxford comma! We've had a lot of fun here folks when it comes to GF goodness. This show is known for its scares, its mysteries, its heart tuggers, and shocking discoveries. But at the end of the day, it's still a cartoon. And like any cartoon, it knows how to have a sense of humor. These senses aren't always good per say, but in Gravity Falls' case it is great.

Case in point D, D, and More D. God that sounds weird typing out. We start with what appears to be an average day for the Pines family, but then Ford comes out with an alien. Oh yeah, if you thought GF was gonna pull a Steven Universe and completely forget about some crazy event the next episode after then you'd be wrong. For you see, GF has this neat little thing called pacing. It tends to come with cartoons that have much clearer goals in mind as well as a LOT less episodes. 

P.S. I'm only harsh towards SU because I love it. The recent arc was astounding, so let's not get our knickers in a twist.

Stan is noticeably getting peeved by his brother's antics, but not yet to the point of running for mayor. Hell, we even see the mayor make an appearance in this episode. The moment was funny, but I kind of felt like I was time travelling.


Ooohhh, so that's how you spell it.

Dipper obviously wants to hang out with Ford considering he spent nearly the entire summer trying to figure out if he even existed, but Ford doesn't want to risk anyone else falling down his path. Dipper also has trouble trying to find someone to play a DnD style game, and oh yeah, GF totally went there! DnD, even though I've never played it, is one of my favorite parody topics when it comes to fiction. Other shows like Community and Regular Show handle it with such respect and humor, and Gravity Falls is no exception to this principle.

However, no one wishes to play with Dipper and deems the game too nerdy, even Soos who essentially LARPs most days. Oh wait, my bad. FCLORP (Foam and Cardboard Legitimate Outdoor Role Play). But after stumbling into Ford's lab, he finds out that Ford is just as into the game as himself. 

Let it be known that I adore this show's handling of Grunkle Ford. He's the character this show has been building up to for years, so he most surely be this all knowing and devoid of imperfection type of guy right? Nope! This guy may have brought a level of seriousness and stakes to the show, much like Washington from Red vs Blue, but he can get just as geeky and passionate about little things as Dipper. Their common interest in a simple game is what ultimately leads to their compelling mentor-student relationship.

They even have conversations about the history of the game itself, including any IP's greatest weakness, the 90's! 


Remember Yo Yogi?

Honestly, the only mascot I can think of that manged to not talk down to kids in this way is Smokey.



Take some f***ing notes all you Hollywood hacks out there who keep thinking that this is a good idea!!!!

One of my personal favorite scenes from this episode is when Dipper is planning out his next session with Ford, and Mabel realizes that she may have gone a little far with making fun of him.

Mabel: You're uh, spending a lot of time with old Fordsy lately, huh?

Dipper: You have no idea. I knew the author must be cool, but he's better than I imagined. And, he doesn't make fun of me all the time, like you and Grunkle Stan do.

Mabel: Give 'im time, haha! Heyooo! (Pause) Nah, you got me. (Lays down; to herself:) You got me. 

The dialogue and Schaal's delivery prove that Mabel clearly isn't as selfish as we make her out to be. Heck, she even shows a little empathy here. The next day Stan, Mabel, and Grenda (though for some reason not Candy, odd), get ready to watch a not-so-subtle take on their own show called Duck-Tective. And you guys thought Crying Breakfast Friends was cringey. Though to be fair, it is still a very funny take on how outsiders look at shows compared to fans.

Ford: Hey, at least I'm not all keyed up to watch a kid's show.

Stan: I'll have you know that Duck-tective has a big mystery element! And a lot of humor that goes over kids' heads!

Grenda: I don't get a lot of it, but I like animals in human situations.

But then an inciting incident occurs. You see, earlier in the episode Ford revealed to Dipper that he possessed an item called the infinity-sided die. It's a die that, when rolled, can lead to infinite possibilities. This can range from having your face melted off, the planet turning into an egg, season 8 of MLP improving, or even season 6 of Teen Titans coming back.

RB'sB: You had me for a minute but you kind of lost me towards the end there.

What's important is that it's too dangerous to roll, and when the family gets into a scuffle, the die falls out (though I'm not sure why Ford brought it with him) and lands on a side that brings the characters from the game to life. The usual affair.

Probabilitor: Mortals of dimension 46'\, kneel before me and (rolls dice) snivel! I am Probabilitor! The greatest wizard in all of mathology! Give or take an error of 0.4.

Look, I'm a simple man. I hear Weird AL Yankovik's voice, I tend to say instant classic. Unless you're Adventure Time, Star vs the Forces of Evil, Teen Titans Go, Mr. Pickles, Pig Goat Banana Cricket, The High Fructose Adventures of-

RB'sB: All right we get it! Dude's as careful with choosing his roles as Tom Kenny! Let's move on!

Sorry. Anyway, he kidnaps Dipper and Ford in order to eat their brains and become smarter. Sure. This leads to Stan begrudgingly agreeing to save his brother. Hey now, that may be a little messed up, but I see where he's coming from. Dude's spent years trying to save his brother only to be greeted with a punch to the face. Despite that, they gear up and head out, meeting plenty of great references along the way.


"Hey! Look! Listen!"

Now if only we could get Stan to kill Fi. Anyway, once they arrive, the only way to win back their family is by playing, you guessed it, Dungeon, Dungeons, and More Dungeons. You know what, I think I'll stick with writing the initials. The battle is funny, the visuals are creative, Weird Al kills as Probabilitor, and we get some of that sweet Chekhov's Gun goodness this show rocks at.


Something told me that this gum would come into play later.

The episode even ends with the family getting disappointed by Duck-tective's big twin brother twist. Funny how Gravity Falls did this stupid trope flawlessly while other media like Despicable Me 3 just look like fan fics. Hey, that'd make a good comparison! Also, anyone else confused why the characters all got sent back to the game except for the Gryphon?

Number 3/Into the Bunker

Even though it may not seem like, Into the Bunker is, in my opinion, one of the most important episodes of the show, and probably the most important episode in terms of Dipper's development. And when this episode started with Dipper and Wendy watching a hilariously bad zombie movie together, I was wondering to myself if this show was actually going to go there. Of course that doesn't stop them from going here first.

Wendy: Dude, you're laying on my bra.

This is a kid's show right? Anyway, while Stan is going about usual con man ways, Dipper gathers up the mystery group to start exploring those new secrets from the journal. Once Wendy arrives and Dipper acts weird, Mabel takes notice and even applies her skepticals. When I first watched this episode, I found Mabel to be ridiculously annoying. The way she's butting into Dipper's personal issues and refusing to let go of it was starting to get borderline obnoxious. But looking back, I now realize how important Mabel's role is here. Not only is she being a considerate sibling with trying to help Dipper, albeit in her own strange way, but she knows perfectly well how unhealthy it is to bottle up your emotions until the day you die. It's better to get those feelings out than being forced to imagine what if.

Wendy shows off some of her bad a**-itude and leads them into one of the coolest looking shots from this season.


I mean just look at those expressions of intrigue and the way the stairs move with the camera.

And if that's not enough, we also get an intense action scene right after where the walls start closing in on the cast. The feeling of claustrophobia and fear of getting crushed makes this scene so strong and at times hard to watch. It even feels like you're right there with them. Now I know how the Terminator must've felt.

Thankfully, Dipper was able to use the journal and his quick wits in order to help them escape. But even though they escaped that room, Dipper is still trapped by a force much greater than moving walls. The weight of insecurity towards his feelings for Wendy! The kind of weight that can you drag you down and prevent you from holding normal conversations with a person because you're so scared something might slip out. So Mabel sees her opportunity to free her brother by... trapping him in a locker.

RB'sB: We are supposed to like Mabel right?

It's going somewhere. Because it's more than just a locker, but also an entrance to an underground shelter and research facility. Besides, all Dipper had to do was tell Wendy his feelings, but keeping his feelings a secret was literally more important to him than getting away from terrifying monster. And people call Mabel the crazy one.

Luckily, the monster gets scared away by... the author of the journals? This early into the season? Who is voiced by Mark Hamill, a man well known for voicing super creepy villains? Allow me to apply my skepticals. Mabel and Soos even begin to realize that something is up when they read up about a shapeshifter that escaped one of the pods. And then we get a dialogue exchange that I find rather underrated.

Mabel: (Gasps) I thought he was just joking!

Soos: YOU KNOW DIPPER'S JOKES ARE TERRIBLE!

While "the author" is looking through the journal, Wendy finds a bean can with a picture that looks exactly like "the author," and I love how the music in this scene adds to the creep factor in play. In fact, a lot of this show's music feels huge,varied, and matches the scene's tone perfectly. That's what you call brownie points! The four meet back up and discuss a plan to "destroy" the monster.

RB'sB: Can cartoons seriously not say death still?

I guess it just depends on how intense a show is. And this show in particular already pushes the censor bar quite a bit.



So I can understand why they'd need to pull back in some places.

But wait a minute, this is an episode with a shapeshifter. Surely we're gonna have a "Which one do I shoot?" scene right? Yes indeed! And would you look at that? Chekhov's Gun is looking mighty strong today. 


She does this a lot actually.

The monster is detained, and it actually stays true to its word when it says, "This is the last form you'll ever take." In Northwest Mansion Mystery, he looks exactly like that when he gets turned to wood.

RB'sB: That episode isn't on your list is it?

Nope.

RB'sB: And yet Stanchurian Candidate is?

Uh huh.

RB'sB: Why do you make life so much harder for yourself?

But none of what happened earlier matters, because this is the scene that really matters. Dipper finally discussing his feelings with Wendy. Not only does it feel so freaking good to see him finally being honest with her and himself, but the way Wendy herself handles it is a great combination of maturity, tact, and sympathy. Sometimes relationships just can't work out, and it is incredibly important for both parties to be able to acknowledge. Even more admirable is the ability for both parties to remain friends in the end, accepting their differences and staying true to each other by not dancing around the issue and pretending its simply cute. Other cartoon characters need to take note of this!

RB'sB: Gee, I wonder who you could be talking about.

That's right. April O'Neil from TMNT 2012.

RB'sB: Oh, I thought that.... never mind. You're doing great buddy.

After a scene that couldn't have gone off better, Soos reveals an old computer that he found. Oh wow! I wonder what secrets it's going to hold!

*We never find out. It just gets destroyed by Bill Cipher.*



Well, I'm sure we'll at least get plenty more episodes with Wendy being awesome now that everything is resolved between her and Dipper right?

*No. In fact, she gets no more development afterwards.*



Number 2/Not What He Seems

And what would a Gravity Falls list be without one of the most talked about and celebrated achievements of the entire show? Probably a season 1 only list. *cough* plug-in *cough*

This episode begins with another round of Stan hard at work on his secret project, and he's apparently closer than ever. So close in fact, we actually get something that this show has been sorely lacking, something to actually do with gravity and falling! Throughout this episode, we get what is deemed as gravity anomalies throughout. I absolutely adore this plot point because of how well crafted and inspired it looks. It even eventually leads to some of this show's most exciting set pieces.

Also, I have a little fan theory that in this opening scene, the very first anomaly has actually been shown to us in every episode. Remember how Dipper and Mabel would float in the air near the end of the theme? I believe, with good reason, that this actually does happen to them at this moment, just off screen. It would certainly make sense, and it wouldn't even be the strangest thing to have happened to them.

After finding a stash of illegal fireworks, the Pines do a little bonding together, and much like the nighttime prairie scene from The Lion King, it's pretty easy to guess that this is simply the calm before the storm when it comes to positive times. Except in this case, we get a reality check almost immediately when the government swoops in to arrest Stan for the theft of some illegal toxins. I love how he reacts here.

Stan: Aah! I don't understand! What did I do that warrants this much arresting?

I've certainly been arrested before, but never to this degree! This is a very important part of the drama in fact. It's no secret that Stan has had a less than spotless past. So the idea of his past finally coming back to bite him in the butt isn't out of the question. Because of this, I was right there with Dipper and Mabel. Like, Dipper,my faith in Stan was put to the test, and it was very easy to assume the worst. And like Mabel, I wanted to deny it and pretend like everything was normal. I mean, this is Grunkle Stan we're talking about, one of the most well written and fun curmudgeons in animation. He couldn't be a bad guy... could he?

Even as an audience member who has a better idea of the big picture than most of the characters I was unsure of what to think. True, we actually know what Stan has been up to, but what exactly is his end game? Every time he talks to himself, he mentions how this is it, and everything is coming together and will never be the same. And to this show's credit, it makes sense that he wouldn't just outright say his plans out loud. 1, they're already kind of pushing it with the amount of things he says alone to himself, though that can be chalked up to solitude, and 2, what human being talks like that?

One of the biggest problems with visual media today is that it forgets that it's, well, visual! The best stories know how to take their time and let you actually experience the story as opposed to just dumping it all on top of you at once. Gravity Falls has been performing an impressive juggling act for about 2 years now when it comes to doling out the necessary details while at the same time painting a beautiful story for us that unfolds right in front of our eyes. Seeing the way Dipper and Mabel react throughout this episode, the aura of urgency that constantly surrounds Stan, the dark and chilling atmosphere, the somber and mysterious colors coming off the sunset that let us know that the end of an era is coming all come together perfectly to treat us with one of the most visually poignant and mature as Hell episodes for the entire show.

When Dipper and Mabel escape the government car and find out about Stan's multiple fake identities, it feels like a punch to the heart and gut. Stan Pines.... might not even be Stan Pines. It's insane. It's ludicrous. But what else could it possibly be? The correct answer, may not be as obvious as you think.

Remember when I said the gravity leads to some incredible set pieces? Well, you know I have to talk about the interrogation room scene for at least a little bit! Thanks to Robobuddies-

RB'sB: Aren't you forgetting something about her?



Welcome to RaccoonBroVA's channel, where we leave any and all drama at the front door! Make sure to wipe your feet of any controversial tweets while you're at it. In her video about Steven Universe, one lesson I will always carry with me is what it takes to make a really good fight scene. Elements like weight, character, and composition are all important, but what shines the most in this particular scene is the environment. The animators, even it's just for a little bit, are no longer limited by freaking gravity. Of course this scene is gonna look awesome!

As killer as that scene was though, the real climax is afoot. Dipper and Mabel, along with Soos, finally find Stan's secret lab. In this scene, we get arguably some of the best voice acting from the entire decade. Words can't describe the emotions that all these characters go through in finding out the truth about their once unimpeachable great uncle. Thanks to a cipher from the 3 journals, they figure out that he's been  working on some kind of doomsday device. But right before they can properly shut it down, Stan arrives just in time to make his final pleads. And before I say anything else, I think this image says much more than I ever could about the definition of faith.


Is this iconic? I feel like it should be iconic.

This image is as universal in my opinion as Pen Pineapple Apple Pen. Anyone, from anywhere will understand the meaning and importance of it.

RB'sB: You're really comparing an episode of Gravity Falls to PPAP?

Hey man, don't underestimate that song's power.



Oh yeah, and it turns out Stan has a twin brother who was the author. Pretty neat stuff right? Not exactly a surprise these days, which is why I don't consider it a spoiler, but that certainly doesn't rob this scene of the importance it holds on the series to this day.

But hey, was your favorite episode not mentioned yet? Well then, here are some honorable mentions!

Society of the Blind Eye - Old Man McGucket has no right to be this sympathetic.

Sock Opera - Bill possesses Dipper, and Mabel finally makes a sacrifice.

Tale of Two Stans - A perfect continuation to one of the biggest cartoon reveals ever.

Little Gift Shop of Horrors - Yep. This is the episode that kicked off Northwest Mansion Mystery. I have no regrets. This episode is simply funny.

Worst Episode/The Love God

There were a couple of episodes I could've chosen form this season. The Last Mablecorn had a super jerky antagonist, and Roadside Attraction felt more like a detour. But those two  episodes don't hold a candle to the confused morals and lessons we're given here on the concept of love.

As I'm sure you all know, I am asexual. But one subject I've been a little confused towards is romance. After all, you don't have to be sexually attracted to someone to be in love with them. But even though I have skewed perception of romance, I feel like with most plot threads I'm pretty adept at detecting bull s*** being shown before me.

To be fair, romance is one of the toughest things to write. It's a juggling act in terms of realism, chemistry, and how much we as an audience want to see the two people be together.

However, I think we can all agree that literally using a love potion to make our wildest ships come true with any regard for the desires of the individuals being affected is a pretty scummy and horrendous practice no matter what. And to really put things into perspective, imagine if Hearts and Hooves Day or The Shippening ended with the same way as this one, where our characters decide it's best to just leave the two victims the way they are simply because they're "happy". I don't care how happy they look because none of it is real. It's all a delusion, and it's honestly kind of f***ed up.

If I were to choose what the worst episode of he whole show was between this one and Boyz Crazy, I'd probably go for The Love God. Simply because the latter, while very frustrating, is relatively harmless. this episode on the other hand is quite honestly destructive to show to kids.

The only reason I don't consider this episode an atrocity is because, much like Boyz Crazy, Stan was a blast to watch. Frankly, even more so here. I guess this episode is the show's version of Not All Dogs go to Heaven. Bad and destructive A plot, wonderful enough that it should've been its own episode B plot.

And the number 1 episode of the whole show is...... honestly better off having its own review. See ya then! (and yes, it's exactly what you think it is)


  • Listening to: Game Grumps
  • Reading: Deathly Hallows
  • Watching: Gravity Falls
  • Playing: Skyward Sword
  • Eating: Lasagna
  • Drinking: Milk
Remember when I said I was definitely gonna do a sequel marathon to my last Top 8 lists? Well, much like Butch Hartman's reputation, that dream died in pretty epic proportions.

I mean, let's face it, forcing myself to only work on Top 8 lists for the entire Summer was a pretty bad idea. I'm just thankful the lists turned out half as decent as they were. Although I do feel like they kept getting better the more I went on. So naturally, my Gravity Falls list was probably the worst.

It wasn't super detailed, some entries felt shorter than others, and I kind of blatantly left off some critically acclaimed episodes for no good reason. It's really a shame too, because Gravity Falls is one of my favorite cartoons ever.

Even after being finished for more than two years now, GF manages to remain as fondly remembered as the day it premiered. And with beautiful animation, mysterious vibes, lovable characters, excellent comedy, and some of the greatest mysteries and twists in TV history... *deep breath*.... it's no wonder that people continue to reference and rave about Gravity Falls still.

This show may not be my all time favorite, but it's most likely somewhere in the top 10, if not 5. But that's a list for another day (and boy will that day be flaming). Right now, it's time for a much more small scale list. My favorite episodes from the second season!

Let's go over some rules since it has been a long time since I've done one of these lists.

1. Yes, I'm just doing 8. But there will be plenty of honorable mentions. I'll limit myself to four this time.

2. Each entry will be like mini reviews of the episodes, which means I'll be going over their plots along with all the things I like about it. So be sure to watch the episodes first.

3. I'll be doing a worst episode of the season right before he number one as well just to spice things up.

4. Don't take the order of these lists too seriously. They're honestly subject to change and for the most part kind of arbitrary. But they do hold certain merits nevertheless.

5. I'm gonna see if I can do ten words or less reviews at the end of each episode as a little self imposed challenge.

and 6. Mabel was totally justified in the finale. Let's go!


Number 8/Scary-oke


Oh wow, would you look at that? Keeping in tradition with the first GF journal by starting with the first episode of the season. Coincidence?

RB'sB: Probably not.

Meh, it's still worth talking about. We start with Grunkle Stan using the journal that Dipper used in the first season to continue his work on his secret project. he sounds so impassioned about his work, and when you know what he's really working towards, it puts a lot of his efforts into perspective. And let's not forget the little hints.



A six fingered glove?! How did I not notice that the first time I watched this episode?

Stan: Thirty long years and it's all let up to this. My greatest achievement! (Pauses and looks down) Probably should've worn pants. 

Haha, oh man. It has been way too long since I've gotten a dose of GF humor. There's just something so special about it that makes it immediately identifiable. if you hear this joke from an outside perspective, Gravity Falls would be the first show you think about.

After a whole night of work, Stan puts on his showman face and gets ready for the reopening of the Mystery Shack. It feels great to see the town completely on Stan's side for once in the way they boo Gideon.

Stan: 
Please, please... boo harder!

I also appreciate how Stan acknowledges the fact that Dipper and Mabel are mostly to thank for his return to grace. It's moments like these that make you root for the jerk with a heart of gold by showing that he does, in fact, have a heart of gold instead of something like cement.

Stan: 
Your camera's a cinder block, Toby.


"I just wanna be part of things."

Anyone else notice how Kari Wahlgren tends to be typecast as the news reporter? An odd regular role to play, but she might as well keep doing what she's good at.

Stan announces an after party for the Mystery Shack which leads to Mabel announcing the name of their family band Love Patrol Alpha. Dipper and Stan may be disgusted, but I listen to bands called Ninja Sex Party, so I'm kind of used to crazy names at this point.

While Dipper discusses the importance of his investigations with Mabel, a government car shows up outside, which I'm sure is one of Stan's greatest nightmares. So he shuts down the gift shop, which is even more unsettling due to how out of character it is. It's kind of like seeing Maud Pie smile. You know something crazy is about to go down.

We get two agent characters, one voiced by Nick Offerman, checking by the shack to say that they've heard reports of strange occurrences going on in the town. Stan obviously denies this, but Dipper on the other hand is thrilled to finally have the chance to discuss his findings with people who could actually help. However, Stan swoops in to debunk Dipper's claims and sees the two agents off.

Once again, I find Stan's character to be very well designed. You see, most of the time with these kinds of scenes, it's pretty obvious that the denier knows exactly whats going on, which either leads to the other character getting suspicious or just looking like a total idiot for not noticing the obvious. However, even though we know Stan is bull s***ting Dipper, everything he says and does in this scene is completely in character for him. He's a con artist after all, so it makes sense that he'd be able to pull this act off. And since he's a con artist, it's not out of the realm of possibility for an outsider to buy that he doesn't believe in any of the stuff he sells to fools on the daily, including the supernatural.

Hell, even Mabel wants to think about other stuff.

Mabel: We're throwing a party tonight! Can't you go one night without searching for aliens or raising the dead or whatever?

Oh hey, another line showing off how well designed and written every episode of this show is. We'll see why later. Anyway, it's the party, and we get reintroduced to a bunch of side characters we haven't seen in a while (which for me is freaking two years). Meanwhile, Dipper vents in front of Wendy about not being able to do anything about his findings. So she helps grab the card with the agents' number that Stan confiscated earlier. Now, you could ask why Stan didn't just throw away the card or better yet destroy it, but come on. Who cares? We've got Thompson without his shirt.


And this joke is actually important later. No stone unturned!!!

Despite being caught by Stan, Dipper meets up with the agents anyway to show them the book. However, they don't believe him since it just looks like another one of Stan's products. As any logical person would do in a situation like this, Dipper f***ing raises the dead in a last ditch effort! Yeah, this episode kind of escalates quickly, but it's nothing too wild for a show like this. As for Dipper, I understand why he did it. He's a mystery solver, and he's been working on this case almost all Summer. Now that he finally has a chance to solve it, he'll do whatever it takes to get these guys to take him seriously. And yeah, raising the dead is kind of a game changer!

Unfortunately, the spell didn't come with a quantity check, so there ends being a zombie invasion as opposed to a demonstration. It was only a matter of time really until this show did a zombie episode. Zombies are some of the most popular monsters right now, and this was hinted at as early as the first episode, so I say why not zombies?! Probably because they'll ruin the party and turn one of the show's beloved characters into a zombie as well. Also, call back!

Mabel:

Dipper, what's the one thing I asked you not to do tonight?

Dipper: (Sounding ashamed:) Raise the dead.

Mabel: And what did you do?

Dipper: (Sounding ashamed:) Raise the dead.

You see? That's why it's so important to pay attention to every line of dialogue in the show, because Mabel actually said this! This might be one of the longest set ups for a pay off I've ever seen, and it's absolutely worth it! Plus I've enjoyed much longer set ups.



It turns out the animators are great at zombie designs, and this whole scene looks excellent. We also get great tension relievers in the form of Zombie Soos. Or Zoos if you will. 

Soos: Dudes, stay calm. I've been training for this moment my whole life. With all the horror movies I've seen, I literally know all there is to know about to avoid zombies. A zombie bites Soos, and he becomes a zombie. Second thought, gonna flip the script. Can I, eat your brains? Yea or Nay? Seeing some Yea faces over here.

I think a self aware zombie is one of the greatest ideas for a joke I've ever seen. Everything Zoos says is hysterical. Despite being a zombie, he somehow managed to stay totally in character, aside from wanting to eat his friends' brains.

But Zoos isn't the only great thing about this scene. Stan comes in to save the day and shows off his bad a** fighting skills, much to Dipper and Mabel's amazement. Luckily they manage to keep him in character here without feeling too over powered. He is a senior citizen after all.

Stan: Oh! Ow. Everything hurts.

He finally admits that he's always known what's been going on in this city and just wanted to keep Dipper away from danger. Luckily thanks to some of Mabel's party lights, it turns out that after all this time, nearly half of the book has been written in invisible ink, including the zombies' weaknesses... a three part harmony! Bro, you see these stones right here?

RB'sB: Yeah, what about 'em?

They're all covered in dirt because those sides have been in the dirt so long. Which meeeeeeaaaaaaannnnnsssss-

RB'sB: None of them are untur-?

NOT ONE FREAKING STONE!!!!! This leads to a karaoke song that's as awesome as it sounds that saves the day. The family makes up, and they all promise to not keep anything hidden from each for now on. But since their fingers are crossed, this means future episodes are fair game for both parties. Speaking of future episodes, that revelation with the book is incredibly significant. What makes most second seasons great is that they have some big turn of events that makes them special and exciting. Whether it's the friendship lessons, Cowboy Darrel, or Lord Dominator, the invisible ink is right up there too because it means there are so many more mysteries to explore and secrets to discover. Can't wait to see what happens next!

Number 7/Soos and the Real Girl

We start with Mabel frolicking through the shack until her teeth get stuck on wire. Holy crap that must be painful! And Kristen's delivery here is both genuine and freaking hilarious.


"Braces! Braces caught in the screen door! Someone dictate my will, I'm giving it all to Waddles!"

Luckily Soos the handy man gets her out of the door. This small moment does a great job of establishing Soos's character and why he's so appreciated at the Mystery Shack. He may be foolish, but like most fools he is particularly good at specific things. Spongebob has fry cooking, Caboose has robotics, and Soos is basically the shack's Jack of all trades. But he's not great at everything.

We finally get to see what his home life is like outside of the shack, indicating that this is indeed a Soos-centered episode, and his grandmother reveals that his cousin is having an engagement party

Abuelita: I do not want to pressure you, but you are a man now... in a way. It's time for you to start meeting girls. I would like to see you settled before I ascend to heaven and leave with the angels.

Soos: And with grandpa!

Abuelita: (Looking down) No, he is not there.

The things this show manages to slip by the censors is breath taking. I wonder if there was ever a scene too far that didn't make the cut? [link]

Mmmm, yeah, I can see why Disney had to put their foot down on that one. 

Now that we're at the theme song, I think now's a good time to talk more about something I should've given more attention in my last journal. The glorious as all Hell theme song! There are a couple of theme songs that are solely instrumental such as Sonic Boom and Gumball. Only problem is that they're kind of forgettable and seem to only be there out of necessity.

GF on the other hand managed to create one of the most recognizable and instantly iconic themes of the decade. The chorus of whistling, along with the striking imagery, sets the mood this show is going for instantly and always gives me goosebumps. Most of the time when I'm binging shows I skip past the themes to save time, but I refuse to ever do this while watching Gravity Falls. I'll probably also do this for Rise of the TMNT because, let's face it, that opening is untouchable.

We get a bit of Stan's side plot which I'll try and summarize right here since it's not that important. While throwing away an old machine, Stan comes across a Chuck E. Cheese style diner with animatronics that apparently make a crap ton of money. He tries to buy one, but the manager refuses because Stan's too old for the animatronic game. So Stan resolves to steal the animatronic to prove to himself that he's still got it.

I like how Stan tries at first to actually get the robot by legal means and only resorts to crime when he, along with his principle, is pushed. It feels like he has more to prove other than making a quick buck.

Back to what matters, Soos fails awesomely at flirting, so Dipper and Mabel decide to help him out. Also, Mabel does that transition thing. You know the one, where a character says something, and then finishes their sentence in a different location, implying that they waited until they got there to actually complete their thought.



We get a scanning shot of the mall, and you can even spot Melody there (points for attention to detail once again). Some clever dialogue of Soos bombing ensues (including trying to hit on a person outside the Edgy on Purpose store), and he eventually ends up in a game store feeling totally hopeless. That is until he finds a dating sim called Romance Academy 7. Well, I guess of you fail in the real world it can't hurt to try and practice in he virtual one. 

So Soos boots up the game at home and we get.... we.... oh no. It....It's .GIFfanny!!!! I would say clever name on the writers' parts, but I do not like where this is going you guys. I know this episode came out first, but is anyone else get- g- et-ert--herthw-df-geryjwsa-dg-wrthwwfva-q-rhawerg-q................................. [link]

Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika
Just Monika

GAH! *deep breathing* Okay, I managed to switch my computer to an alternate battery source. I should be fine.... I think. In all seriousness, I freaking love .GIFfanny as an antagonist. She starts off as friendly and caring, and Soos immediately rolls along with it. It's not until we get that ominous shot of the unplugged plug that we realize something is amiss.


But honestly, does anyone ever actually unplug their computer and leave it like that? I just turn mine off. Still a creepy shot though.

The game itself is a great parody of dating sims, showing off how much this crew clearly adores games. The intro even has those hilarious typos that never get old. And when it comes to games, anthyding can hadplen. So true.


Let's not forget those high quality sprites and facial expressions!

Mabel and Dipper go to Soos's house where he has apparently been cooped up playing the game for about 13 hours. That's right folks, our beloved goof ball has turned into a straight up Otaku. *shudders* The one thing scarier than Monika.

Soos gives another go at the mall, but he just can't stop thinking about .GIFfany. But soon his thoughts take form when she appears before Soos in the TV screens. You see, she is no ordinary game. Apparently Nintendo just couldn't settle for the Switch. The only way to get more innovative is too literally bring the game to life. Someone has apparently never seen a Terminator film.

But even though Soos spends most of the day with his virtual girlfriend, the unthinkable happens. Soos... actually strikes up a normal conversation with a woman. Yeah, that was a little unexpected. Not only did the game help Soos with social skills, but he also managed to strike a date by simply being himself. Two very admittedly unexpected developments. But hey, I like it! Soos is a great character, and despite his eccentricities, there's a match out there for everyone. And even though the game is technically the villain in this episode, it legitimately gave Soos solid dating advice. 

Unfortunately, it doesn't take rejection too well. .GIFfanny's true colors start to show in the next scene when she lashes out at Soos for breaking up with her. Despite turning her off though, she lives on and continues to stalk Soos all the way to his date at... OH COME ON!!! I'm already dealing with Monika over here, now I have to watch Freddy Fazbear?! I can't take these creep factors anymore!

Even though they win the day, I'll never forget all the creepy as Hell imagery in this episode. I'd argue that this is actually the creepiest looking episode of the series, if not the scariest. With a toxic personality, crazy powers, sickening visuals, and a haunting performance thanks to Jessica Diccico, This episode might actually be one of the best representations of a one sided relationship. Take notes kids.


And sweeeeeet dreeeaaaams.

Number 6/Blendin's Game

Okay, I promise not too gush too much about Justin Roiland in this section. So instead of wasting writing time, here's some clips of Celestia with Lemongrab's voice.



RB'sB: Why is that so fitting?!

We start with a look at the future as Blendin is on the run from time cops. Apparently he's been in jail all this time, and right before he gets caught he invokes GLOBNAR.

RB'sB: Bless you?

No, that's what it's called. GLOBNAR, a sort of gladiator type fight where people fight to get a time wish, whilst the loser's fate is at the hands of the winner. This is Blendin's way of enacting his revenge on Dipper and Mabel for ruining his life. I actually find this to be a much more solid motivation than other antagonists of his caliber, like say.... Trixie! As great as Magic Duel is, it did feel a bit like an overreaction on her part, which is arguably in her character. Blendin, on the other hand, not only was fired, but also was sentenced to ten square life sentences in time prison. And this will be very important later.

At the Mystery Shack, we see Soos being his usual helpful self.

Stan: Soos! I need to scratch myself in two places at once!

RB'sB: Oh hey guys, Alex Hirsch is scratching himself. ZING!

Crude as that joke was, I'm actually glad you brought it up. Everyone, it's time to put this out there. There have been plenty of cartoon creators who also decided to lend their voices to their own projects. I totally get this. If I created a show I'd go for that acting credit too. You've got Seth Macfarlane, Seth Green, J.G. Quintel, Ian Jones Quartey, Doc Hammer, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, and even Justin Roiland! But I am prepared to say that out of all of them, Alex Hirsch is my pick for the best voice actor!

With JG and Ian, they have some of the most recognizable voices in cartoons, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. It just means they don't have much range. Doc, Trey, and Matt have decent range, but because they voice sooo many characters in their shows it becomes pretty easy to spot them out. Justin and Mr. green, as much as I love them, don't have the greatest range either. As for Macfarlane, he's honestly one of the best voice actors working right now. Too bad most of his talents are squandered on below average products like Family Guy and Sing. Plus his normal voice shows through sometimes when he gets really into a scene.

These problems are virtually nonexistent with Hirsch. He voices Stan, Soos, Bill Cipher the gnomes, and Old Man McGucket. These are all pretty major characters, yet none of their voices even come close to sounding like the other. Alex Hirsch, you may not exactly be the next Mel Blanc, but your ability to run a show as well as boast an impressive range of voices impresses me to no end. Here's a cookie!

When Soos leaves wallet behind, Dipper and Mabel rummage through it and find out today is his birthday. Oh, is this gonna be some sort of Party of One style episode where we see he's so selfless that he totally forgot his birthday? Well no, in fact it's a lot sadder than that.

Dipper and Mabel, along with her friends, throw Soos a surprise party, which actually depresses Soos. Wendy reveals that he, for some reason, hates his birthday for an unknown reason. And we see how serious they are about this.


"I even petitioned the government to have this day removed from calendars. Now I'm not allowed on airplanes."

Considering Soos is the kind of man to scratch Stan in two places at once, I can see why he'd do that. Luckily his birthday wasn't the only thing they found in his wallet. It turns out Soos loves laser tag, and they try to cheer him up by taking him to the arcade where a laser tag resides. But right before the fun can start, Dipper and Mabel are apprehended by the Time Police where Blendin Blandin is revealed to be back.

Mabel: The time traveler guy! What did you say your name was again? Blendo... Blondin...

Dipper(Snaps fingers) Blar-blar!

Mabel: There it is!

Blendin: It's Blendin! Blendin Blenjamin Blandin!

And unlike in TMNT with Baxter Stockman, Gravity Falls takes the high road and decides to not run this stupid joke into the f***ing ground. Thank you!

Speaking of names, anyone else notice how the Time Cops' names are Lolph and Dungren? These are the kinds of jokes that simply have to be discovered on second watches. Right before the GLOBNAR can begin, Dipper steals the Time Tape so that they can escape. But instead of the present, they end up ten years in the past. Honestly, there are so many awesome and clever visual gags in this scene that I just can't bring myself to spoil them all. So here are a couple!


I can get behind this kind of graffiti.

Present Robbie: *shoots Soos with a laser* Ha ha ha! Laser Robbie!

Past Robbie: *shoots Dipper with water* 
Heheh, dorks. Young Robbie!

Good on the writers as well for establishing earlier that the arcade used to be a mattress store, signifying the time difference. We even get a moment where Young Wendy thinks that Dipper is cute. So f***ing genius!

After fixing the Time Tape, Dipper and Mabel run in to Soos as a child. They decide to follow him so that they can figure out what went wrong on his birthday. Every year, he's been waiting for his dad to come and visit him, but it's never happened. Every time Soos thinks he's at the door, he gets another post card saying he couldn't make it and that he'd be there next time. But next time never comes. You can throw this kid the coolest parties, give him the nicest presents, serve the greatest food, but none of that can replace the love and attention of a father. This is why he hates his birthday. It's not because he didn't get some present. It's not because his Abuelita was unable to book some performer. It's not even because had a super unlucky day. It was because it was the day he finally understood that his father didn't care enough about him to see him on his birthday, and he would never be coming back.

RB'sB: Crying Mako 

This moment is one of the most mature and insightful moments of Soos's entire character, and possibly the show. It adds a lot of weight and realistic motivation to why he hates his birthday. Realizing this themselves, Dipper and Mabel turn themselves in and accept Blendin's challenge so that they can win a Time Wish for Soos to see his father. But not before getting a funny joke about Roiland's voice being annoying.



Lolph: Hey, turns out I can mute him.
Dundgren: Man, I wish we'd known that earlier.

To be fair, I feel like Justin is never allowed to use any voice for for cartoons other than his Oscar voice. And I say Oscar voice instead of Morty because that's the first voice role he's ever used it in. This guy's got... decent enough range you guys. He doesn't always have to be annoying.

GLOBNAR goes down, and it's pretty dang fun to watch. It even makes you think there's gonna be this epic laser tag battle like they've been hinting at this whole time only to make it as underwhelming as possible, which in this case is a good thing because this it's not the main focus of the episode. Plus it's really funny.

They return to Soos saying that he can have any wish granted, including getting his dad back. However, Soos simply wishes for them to be fixed up (along with an infinity slice of pizza). After seeing everything they went through to make him happy, Soos realized that he didn't need some deadbeat dad. All this time his family has been right in front of him, because family doesn't have to be defined by blood. Right bro?

RB'sB: What? I can't hear you over all this cheese.

*sniff* Love you too buddy.

Number 5/Stanchurian Candidate

I am talking about a political episode of a cartoon. Which means there will be absolutely no mentions of any real life politics. Do you all understand me?! Good. Now here's this episode is good.

We get a cold opening centered around Stan having a really rough day. He's feeling old and like no one respects him anymore, which can be attributed greatly to the arrival of his brother, whom I will discuss later. This opening scene is very important because, like I said, this show is excellent at giving characters solid motivation and conveying a lot of this through quick and very funny scenes.

The concept of Stan running for mayor after all is... a little strange to say the least. After all, this guy is a con artist and isn't the best with people when it comes to bedside manners.

RB'sB: Can't forget that extensive criminal record. Almost like we need to LOCK HIM U-

I SAID NO POLITICS BROTHER!!!! But yeah, Stan isn't running because he thinks he'd be a great mayor. He wants to gain some respect back from his family and prove to them, as well as himself, that he's not slowing down any time soon.

We cut to the town hall where they discuss how running for mayor works. Also, I completely forgot about the news report joke earlier announcing the mayor's death, and I nearly lost it.


"I'm sorry. It's just been so long since we've had real news. I'm just so happy!"

We get a ceremony where candidates literally have the opportunity to throw their hats in the ring, and the first one to step up is Bud Gleeful, giving Stan even more reason to run himself. In fact, most of the town follows suit, including a creepily normal character named Tad Strange. Sorry, but I'm just so not used to normal and emotionally stable cartoon characters.


"And I love bread."

Much like last time, Dipper and Mabel take it upon themselves to help Stan out with his campaign. Except unlike Soos, Stan isn't having it and wants to do this thing by himself. Does this work out for him?

Toby: Hello! Candidate Stan first question: How do you feel about the American flag?

Stan: Meh, I can take it or leave it, too many stripes. Next question.

Toby: What would you do to help educate our kids?

Stan: Ha, simple. Put them on an island and make them fight for dominance. Also teach kids swears. That'll bring them to the real world. 

Toby: What would you do about the crime in Gravity Falls?

Stan: Wait, do you mean crime in general, or just the specific crimes committed by m— *Dipper cuts the phone line*

It almost feels like Stan is wearing his truth telling dentures here, and it's still just as funny! 

Apparently Stan is doing so bad that not only are his ratings below zero, he's also already become a... a-a... a meme.



I completely forgot that this episode made a joke about memes. I also forgot hat the joke was still somehow funny. How you may ask compared to other shows? Well, like any good joke, it all comes down to timing. I don't find meme humor bad in cartoons just because they're dated (though that is part of the reason). It's also because most of the time the references feel incredibly forced and like the writers had no idea what made the meme funny to begin with. 

Can't forget about that timing as well! Jokes like these are meant to be fast paced so as to not distract from the story. If there is anything this show excels at, it's never wasting time. Their meme reference was on screen for about half a second and requires a good eye to really catch. Also I've spent way more time explaining why this joke works than the show itself actually did conveying it. So yeah, Gravity falls knows how to meme good.

Fearing that Bud might be up to no good, Dipper turns to Ford for help with Stan's campaign. Why doesn't Ford just run? I mean, come on you guys, the man's busy keeping the universe safe. He can't do that while also running one of the strangest towns in America. Luckily, he does have a tie that will enable Dipper to mind control Stan's every move. Awesome? Yes. Morally ambiguous? Eh, what could go wrong? Besides, this is Stan we're talking about. He's probably done worse.

After a funny scene of the twins testing the tie out on Soos, they use the tie on Stan and manage to bring back up his name in the polls. This worries Bud, who turns out to be indeed up to no good as he is basically a puppet in Gideon's plans to break out of jail.

Aw crap, I never talked about Gideon did I? Why oh why I couldn't at least one of his episodes appeared in my last list?! And the one time he did he was upstaged by Bill freaking Cipher. Anyway, Gideon rocks. He sort of feels like the concept of Stewie, a villain trapped in the body of a child, but he manages to use his childlike innocence as a weapon more than a weakness. A lot of his euphemisms feel like a very natural part of his character a roll off quite well, and a lot of this can be thanked by Thurop Van Orman, aka Flapjack. In short, great villain.

Seeing as how the good guys have resorted to rather unethical means, Gideon takes similar measures and mind controls his own Dad. A very interesting moral argument. Gideon may be evil, but he's pretty much only copying what Dipper and Mabel started, so is anyone really in the right here?

Eventually Stan finds out about the mind control tie, which of course makes him feel even more underappreciated. So he goes on without it, but he has trouble getting the crowd to throw bird seeds at him.

RB'sB: Excuse me what?

If you've seen the episode you'll know what I'm talking about. Gideon reveals himself to Dipper and Mabel, and unlike most villains who boast for the sake of boasting and plot, he actually takes them up to the old mayor's (whose name I refuse to even attempt to type out) monument with a bunch of dynamite waiting for them. Okay, never mind. That moral compass is officially shattered.

As Stan regrets not taking his kids' advice, he hears their pleads of terror from the monument and goes to save them. Despite not being the best speaker, he knows when to take up immediate action, which I wish was a quality be considered more when voting.

RB'sB: Um...?

You're right, you're right. Can't get off topic. Once again Stan shows off how much of a bad a** he is, and we see just how patriotic he really is. Because what's more patriotic than saving your grand niece and nephew with a ball of fiery doom as a back drop? Though I do have to take points off for him punching that eagle.

But as I predicted, his shady past came back to bite him in the butt as he was disqualified. Fortunately the race wasn't as important as respect he wanted from his kids. So I'd call this episode a victory for him! Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna take a break while my brother reads off the many many crimes Stan has committed. Bro?

RB'sB: With pleasure. *ahem* FIRST-DEGREE THERMOMETER THEFT. PUG TRAFFICKING. SNACKS EVASION. PICK-POCKETING. WOODPECKER BAITING. IMPERSONATING A DENTIST. GENERAL INDEC-


  • Listening to: Ram Jam
  • Reading: Guinness Book Of Game Records
  • Watching: Gravity Falls
  • Playing: Smash Bros for Wii U
  • Eating: Eggs
  • Drinking: Water
Everyone, I'd like to introduce you to Free-For-All. At first glance, it may seem like another Death Battle clone, but here are some stark differences. There's no fight, the hosts swap out every other episode, and it's much more focused on the debate side of things rather than the versus. So please, give this video a look when you can, and let me know what you think! I'm Nate by the way.



Also, here's an every second of video I made for Game Grumps. I think I'm definitely gonna be making more of these in the future.


  • Listening to: Ninja Sex Party
  • Reading: GameInformer
  • Watching: Community
  • Playing: Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Eating: Sandwich
  • Drinking: Capri-Sun
Sorry for the obvious title, but it got the most votes on my poll, so I think you guys are already okay with it.

Way back in the summer of 2016, Nickelodeon was showing promos for their newest cartoon following the boy who was the middle child to ten different sisters. When I first saw the promos, I thought it would suck. The premise sounded ridiculous, I didn't think the sisters would be very interesting, and the art style felt kind of lazy.

So I checked out the first few episodes, and I thought it was... harmless. There was nothing special about it, the show certainly could've been a lot worse. And I even managed to get all the sisters' names down pretty easily.

Then I watched the next episode. And the next one. And the next one. And the next one. And the next one. And the next one.

RB'sB: Hey man, you've got a phone call.

Phone: And the next one. And the next one. And the next one.

Now I know what you guys are thinking. Normally when a reviewer says that, they mean that they started getting more and more fascinated by the show as it went on in the same vain as Friendship is Magic or Gumball. But here's the real reason I kept on watching. I didn't watch because it was amazing. I was trying to figure out WHY it was amazing.

After all, it seemed to be the only show that anybody would talk about. For months I had to click through so many status updates, memes, artwork, and reviews all centered around The Loud House. Which raised the question for me. What's up with all the hype?



I could write an entire journal about hype killing a product, but the thing is, even before all the hype, I felt the exact same way about the show that I did when I watched the first episode. At least with Frozen and Avatar I can understand why they're so huge. But TLH is simply baffling to me. And now, I'm cursed to forever keep watching this mediocre show until I can finally find an episode that justifies the hype.

RB'sB: Wait a minute, I thought you liked the show. You even had it in your Top 20 Cartoons ever in that one status update.

I lied. I felt so guilty about not liking the show that I lied to you guys, and I lied to myself. I'm really sorry everybody. I thought that maybe if I forced myself to get the appeal I'd finally climb aboard the fun train, but it just didn't work. If anything, it made me even more frustrated with the show!

RB'sB: Which leads us to the elephant in the room. Do you actually think that a good TLH episode doesn't exist?

I don't see why that matters. I mean the journal was on April Fools Day.

RB'sB: Sure, but unlike other pranks from that day, you genuinely feel like you're right about that. Other than that status where you lied, you've had nothing but negativity for the show. So was that journal true or not?

I mean.... yes, with obvious exaggerations. I'll give TLH this, it's certainly competent... at times. But when you have THAT many episodes, you're bound to get some standouts eventually. After all, a broken clock is right twice a day. And that's exactly how I see TLH. A broken clock that needs a little lubrication. So enough time wasting, this is The Loud House!

For the format of this journal, I'm gonna go back to my format of the Adventure Time journal I did that was honestly pretty similar to this one in terms of premise. This means I'll be cutting it up into sections of the things that annoy me the most about this show. Also, I'll probably focus the most on season 3 since they're the most recent and actually provide the greatest examples for points. Also, I'm gonna keep myself pretty mellow here since I know you guys love this show. So, as a challenge, I'm not gonna curse once. Guess I'd better get it all out of my system.



Too Many Characters

Eeyup. I'm not holding back anything with this first point. I'm starting off by criticizing the very premise of the show. The whole point of The Loud House after all is that it's loud, chaotic, and filled to the brim with characters. Look, there's filled to the brim, and then there's this.



At some point, this whole show is gonna burst. Too many characters does seem like an odd criticism. After all, most of the shows I watch have just as many, if not more main characters. But the big difference that helps those shows' casts work is their environments. Look at MLP. This show has TONS of characters. But it also takes place in a fantasy setting, with huge open environments and vast creative worlds. The more world building a show has, the more room it has to breath.

Hell, in Red vs Blue, there are too many main characters for me to count on both my hands, twice! But they also have the ENTIRE GALAXY to breath. Even in the first episode, they have a gigantic canyon to play around in.

The Loud House, at its core, is a slice of life show with no fantastical elements or settings for the characters to breath in. You know how many important characters there are in We Bare Bears? Three! TLH has 13!!! This show has no room to breath, and because most episodes take place in the house, it feels so claustrophobic.

Also, and I hate being that guy, but doesn't anyone else here think that having THIS many main characters for such a simple and episodic show is kind of a crutch? With this many characters, writers can literally fill entire voids in their episodes with the other main characters getting to do stuff. But the strange thing is that despite the endless possibilities, they've been doing nothing with them for about two seasons!

Unbalanced Character Dynamics

These writers have infinite potential for episode ideas, so why have so many episodes only been about Lincoln? The episode is either just about Lincoln, Lincoln and Clyde, Lincoln and a sister, Lincoln and ALL the sisters, Lincoln and Ronnie Anne *shutters*, or Pets Peeved. There have been other exceptions like House Music and Friend or Faux?, but the only thing they have going for them is that they don't star Lincoln. And I can remember at the time of their releases how big a deal everyone was making out of it. Well it shouldn't be such a big deal! What is the point of having all these characters just to do nothing with them?

Some of the worst episodes are when the staff completely forget the sisters are even individuals and just have them act like a hive mind. Remember in Cereal Offender when all the sisters were there just to behave like brainless children and screw up Lincoln's end goal? Also, what was he doing again?



Getting a box of bran flakes? That's a worse character motivation than Grannies Gone Wild.

Rainbow Dash: 'Til finally you climb to the highest peak on the rails! Then drop towards the ground at lightning speed before coming up to a screeching halt! It's the coolest ride ever to exist in the history of Equestria!

YOU ARE LITERALLY THE FASTEST THING IN EQUESTRIA! WHY DO YOU CARE SO MUCH ABOUT GOING ON SOMETHING THAT'S NOWHERE NEAR YOUR SPEED?! Did you forget you can break the sound barrier?

But that's another review, back to this one. Lincoln, to me, is one of the worst choices for a main protagonist I've ever seen. There is nothing interesting about him at all. I mean, he's nice. Okay. He has white hair. Fine. He reads comics in his underwear. How did we not realize Savino was a predator again? Lincoln, at his core, is the voice of reason of the group. He's there to reel in other characters from their shenanigans, and that's perfectly fine. But most of the time he's given nobody to reign in. Imagine if Applejack, Simmons, Ice Bear, Anais, or Squidward were the main characters of their respective cartoons. They'd be boring as heck shows. Or The Loud House I guess. At least Steven Universe is a compelling enough character to warrant all the screen time.

Even The Loud House admits Lincoln has no character. In Ties That Bind, every tie connected to a sister's personality in some way. But because Lincoln has no personality, they had to say "the white hare". Get it? Because Lincoln has white hair and the tie is a bunny? Gotta love that misunderstanding plot.

I'll give the staff credit, they do fix the problem pretty well in season 3. There's actually a good number of episodes where Lincoln has not a single line. However, I'd be a little more happy if A. They'd done this in the first place, B. They'd get a little more creative with their character pairings, and C. If they actually had Lincoln do his job! Having no voice of reason is worse than having him be the main attraction. Because Lincoln's family is kind of freaking crazy.

Actually, you know what? Let's go through each of his sisters individually and see what I think of them.

Lori

Why couldn't she be the main character? No seriously, why not? She's the oldest and most responsible, so wouldn't it be more reasonable that she controls the chaos? Oh wait, I know. It's because the show is a mostly-female cast, and you've gotta have a male main character so that people will watch it. Thanks for starting that trend Steven Universe.

For the most part, Lori's a pretty shallow character with painfully vapid dialogue, and when she finally has a whole episode dedicated to her, Lori's motivation is to beat another girl at getting the best selfies. Okay, Panda from WBB may be a phone hoard, but at least his interest in technology isn't rubbed into our faces obnoxiously. He even serves as a way to show all the benefits of technology. What benefits does Lori show for owning a phone? It gives you the means of defeating your self proclaimed rival for your own petty needs? Like, whatever. I literally couldn't care le- DANG IT! She's got me doing it!

Leni

Leni is sweet and dumb. And that's it. There's not much else to say about her that I haven't in my comparison. Writing dumb characters actually takes a lot of smart dialogue, and Leni feels like one of the laziest dumb characters ever. It's like she's there just to fill in the dumb character check box.

I think it might be the voice too. No offense to Liliana Mumy, but she just doesn't sell the character very well. Look at other idiots like Patrick Star, Richard, Caboose, or Ed. You truly believe they're dumb without a hint of self awareness. The worst episodes are when they are self aware. Remember when Leni instructed her stunt double to run into a wall on purpose? LAME! Other than one line about golf, I cannot think of one quote from her that's clever. I know I can with Caboose!

Caboose: *facing a wall* If I can't see them, they can't see me!/Yep, he's definitely captured. Or dead. Captured or dead. *inhales sharply* Or captured and dead!/

Caboose: Look what I found!

Donut: I found it!

Caboose: Look what I took credit for finding!

Church: So it is a sword, It just happens to function like a key in very specific situations.

Caboose: Or it's a key all the time, and when you stick it in people, it unlocks their death.

Church: Why would solar power make him sick?

Caboose: Is he a Republican? 

What quotes does Leni have exactly? The lights go out and she thinks she's blind. She can't walk and chew gum at the same time. She calls Lincoln, Landon. She gets herself trapped in Lily's crib and starts crying like a literal baby. She wants to split a quarter 40/40. (They actually make this joke twice because of how hilarious it is.) Constantly running into walls, on purpose apparently. She claims her life's work is a six piece kid's puzzle. 

I'm not laughing at these moments, I'm just super concerned for her. How can she possibly not know that every day of the week ends in "Y"? Can someone get this girl a tutor or something?

Luna

So in this episode, Luna-



Okay, what is up with fandoms obsessing over characters named Luna? She's fine! Luna is a fine character. She's just not nearly as deep as fans make her out to be. The reason she loves music so much is because she went to a rock concert. That's it. Pretty standard stuff beyond that like playing instruments and being easily the loudest and most annoying member of the cast. Nika Futterman is a fine voice actress whom I have nothing against, but she can't sing, and her freakouts are much better suited to characters like Sticks the Badger.

And I guess you could claim that she's so awesome because she's passionate about her work, but so is Luan. Also, are we just gonna forget that she nearly killed Lily by trying to stage dive on her? How has that not been a heavy topic of discussion?!

Luan

Speak of the devil. Luan, funnily enough, went from being my favorite sister to my least favorite over the course of the show. She is not a funny comedian. Her role in the show is comic relief, yet she's easily the most boring character of the cast. All she does is tell lame puns one after the other.

She is not a good antagonist. It makes no sense why she'd be so evil on one day of the year towards her family. The crap she puts her family through not only makes her look terrible, but it makes everyone else look like idiots. How does she have this much control exactly over a house of 12 others? Someone please explain to me how they've never realized their obvious advantage in numbers and just did this? [link]

I think :iconblackmoonpaladin: said it best.

"Luan's jokes aren't just bad... they're PREDICTABLE! And that's the most deadly sin a comic relief character can make. A comic relief character should be sporadic and random, and always keep the audience on their toes. Luan doesn't do that, she keeps her audience staring at their cell phones and waiting for it to be over."

At least Funny Business and Head Poet's Anxiety were good enough to make me like her more.

Lynn



Lucy

Lucy's not that bad honestly. In fact, she's pretty good. I like her design, she's much more reserved, therefore, tolerable, than everyone else, and she has a decent number of good appearances. So yeah, I guess I like her, just not as much as other deviants like :iconmikethehuman113:

Lola and Lana

I'll tackle these two together and say that they are two saving graces for this show. They have the best episodes, Grey's voice work is fantastic, and they can be downright adorable at times. 

Lisa

Wow, the younger siblings are on a role. Lisa may be yet another child with the brain of three Einsteins, but she works for the most part. But she can be pretty lousy at times, especially when it comes to her treatment of her siblings as experiment subjects.

Lily

I'm sure many of you thought I was joking when I said Lily was my favorite TLH character. Well, do you believe me now? Lily is friggin' adorable, and that's basically all you need for me to care so much about her. When I saw how sad she was in The Crying Dame, I felt a part of my heart shrivel up inside. Lily is a shining star on this show, and she's not even my favorite baby character. Not even in the top 5. Those spots belong to The Boss Baby (not kidding), Charlie from Good Luck Charlie, Jack Jack, Pumpkin and Pound Cake, and Flurry Heart, the latter of which makes me feel like a narrator trying to keep a straight face while voicing a documentary about a house cat.



So how would I rank 'em? Probably like this. 

10. Lynn
9. Lori
8. Luan
7. Leni
6. Luna
5. Lisa
4. Lana
3. Lola
2. Lucy
1. Lily

But it doesn't matter much because each section I used to describe my feelings towards these characters barely even count as paragraphs. The only time they did was when I complained about them. All these characters are too freaking simple. In fact-

Everything is Too Simple

From the stories to the characters to the premise, nothing about this show gives me enough to talk about, at least when I'm being positive. There's nothing for me to want to keep coming back to or get more of. Even the characters I do like are nowhere near my favorites in fiction.

Let's take a look at two other simple shows: We Bare Bears and Community. The former is one of the most charming cartoons airing, using simplicity to its advantage in order to be more entertaining, having a cast that's both likable and has enough breathing room, and the atmosphere is so much more inviting and soothing than the all the screaming and poop jokes found in TLH. 

Community is also pretty simple, it's about students and their lives at community college, but my God are the episodes creative and funny. Community uses simplicity and its large cast as tools for success instead of crutches for excuses.

Now for some characters that I have a LOT more to talk about.

The McBrides

Clyde might be one of the most boring and uninteresting best friend characters I've ever seen/ He adds absolutely nothing positive to the show, and he's just there to be the "black friend sidekick" for unfunny comic relief, a stereotype that I was infinitely thankful towards George and Harold for avoiding. 

Speaking of George and Harold, you know how I said their friendship was the heart of Captain Underpants and how every second they're onscreen together is like a drop of heaven? I feel none of that towards Clinlcoln McCloud episodes. These two just lack the same kind of chemistry that makes me want to root for them to be together. Instead of joy, I feel confusion whenever they get more screen time. Remember when Tricked! came out and how most people focused on the stuff the sisters were doing? Funny how 60% of the episode was spent following these two go against the stock bullies.

Oh yeah, quick tangent, I cannot stand these kinds of bullies. Why do they have to have the most obnoxious voices in the world? Why can't they have any personality outside of tormenting a character? Why do no adults or older kids ever call them out? Why can't they be more like Groose from Skyward Sword? [link] And why did TLH have to be the absolute worst at this cliche?!

Moving on, I've compared these two with George and Harold so much that you'd think I'd be comparing them. Don't worry, I have a different pair in mind for them. But for now, I've tried for days to think of a quality Clyde has that doesn't have to do with Lincoln. And as I was writing this, it finally hit me! And it's one of my least favorite parts of any show I've ever watched!



It's his stupid infatuation with a girl that's 6 years older than him! Guys, I seriously don't get how this is at all okay for a kid's show. The obsession this kid shows for Lori would be unhealthy for any age range. Not to mention that nosebleed joke got old ridiculously fast.

And I sure wouldn't be harping on this if Change of Heart actually CHANGED CLYDE'S HEART!!!! It didn't even do what it said it would do. Clyde wanted to be a normal kid, but the writers decided that was just too essential of a character trait for him to lose. I can see why. After all, I literally can't think of any other traits he has. Also, I can't be the only one who thinks Clyde is only friends with Lincoln just to get closer to Lori right? I mean, he did say this when Lincoln was being ostracized by his whole class for not having a green house after all.

Clyde: I'll still hang out with you. In secret, of course. After dark.

That is NOT what real friends do. I don't care if it's meant to be a joke. Not every line in this show has to be a JOKE! And you also don't have to say the same joke twice in the same episode. I'm pretty sure comedy comes in three's you guys.

To wrap this section up, I called it the McBrides since I wanted to bring up this show's handling of representation. And I'm just saying everybody, it's not that big of a deal. Seriously, they have gay parents on the show, so what? I know it's important for the LGBT community, but can we please focus more on the characters? Luna being bisexual is not a character trait. Notice how I didn't bring it up in her section. If the writers really wanted to be diverse, why not make some of the Loud siblings fat, or at least any other body type than stick figures? (I'll touch more upon this later)

Also, and I hate to be THAT guy, but Clarence already did it about two years ago with Jeff's parents.


Bottom line, sexuality isn't a character, and being Mexican isn't either.

Ronnie Anne

Eh? See what I did there? Are you impressed? Can you tell I'm trying to bide my time? Because I feel like I might burst any minute. Ronnie Anne is not a good character. She is nowhere close to a good character. Of all the time she's been on the show, she has not had one redeeming quality.

Ronnie Anne's introduction to the show was the crew trying to rekindle an old cliche that died for a very good reason because of how stupid and dangerous it is to teach to kids. Just because someone is the opposite gender of you, that doesn't automatically mean they have the hots for you if they so much as sneeze at you. Especially when they torment you on a daily basis.

Even after they get together, Ronnie Anne still shows Lincoln no mercy. Why is she allowed to constantly torment and physically abuse him? Just because it's a girl on a guy, that doesn't make it funny. Wreck it Ralph had a scene with Sergeant Calhoun hitting Felix, but that scene was funny because he was okay with it, they needed to escape danger, and he could fix himself back up immediately, which even adds points for surrealism.

I want to see Lincoln beat the crap out of Ronnie Anne just to see how everyone would react. I want to punch Ronnie Anne for everything she's done on the show. Shell Shocked is one of the worst episodes of the show. People think it develops Ronnie Anne, but it only makes her actions more inexcusable. If she had a home life like Helga from Hey Arnold, then maybe I'd forgive her. But she's actually super nice to her family and they love her. So why does she have to treat Lincoln like a punching bag all the time? It makes no seeeeeeeeense.

What kind of friend asks another friend to look for a package for them for days, only to have them open it and get a pie to the face? That's kind of a crappy thing to do. I certainly wouldn't give shippers more fuel after getting pied. Why does Lincoln still show infatuation for a bully? Is it just because she has ovaries? 

There's a scene from City Slickers where Lincoln actually looks forward to Ronnie Anne tormenting him. Why? Has Ronnie Anne brainwashed this poor kid into enjoying everything she puts him through? I don't see how that makes her worthy of a spin-off show that will only last a season. Or at least as long as that other spin-off show. [link]

At this point, I don't think I'll ever like Ronnie Anne. I don't even think I can tolerate her. I'm not gonna be immature and wish death upon her, but I think I at least deserve to get one punch in. Just one? Please? I'll even give her a slab of meat to heal. After all, that is the cure-all for punches right? It must be, it's the only explanation for why every cartoon says it is.

Now let's move on to more technical aspects of the show.

The Animation

I'll give the show this, it has more of a voice to its animation than most cartoons today. (Please don't bring up CalArts with me, I still feel guilty for having been a spark for that controversy.) But for the most part, this show looks pretty meh to me.

Everything just feels serviceable from the movement to the backgrounds. I'd be fine with the slower movements if it matched the tone. But like I said, TLH lacks the calm demeanor of other slice of life affair like We Bare Bears. So if it's going to be more like Unikitty or Mighty Magiswords (shows with very fluid movement and wonderful facial expressions), I ask that the art moves along with it. But as of now, it moves about as fluidly as a duck delivering bread.

The animation also has a pet peeve of mine. I mentioned this earlier, but I'm not a big fan of characters with sticks for bodies. Stuff like Total Drama and Teen Titans Go simply don't work for me in terms of design. If I can imagine myself touching my thumb to my index finger and being able to fit it around a character's waist with room to spare, then the art style kind of bothers me. ASDF characters have more dimensions than this show.



Mean Spiritedness and Stinger Endings

Now this is a very interesting topic regarding The Loud House. Namely because even devoted fans of the show have hated these aspects.

Stinger endings occur when the ending completely negates all the accomplishments of the characters, and TLH has had more of these than Regular Show. But the reason it works in Regular Show and not here is because the characters more than likely deserved it, it was a super clever twist, and it doesn't always end on an obnoxious guitar riff.

Every time TLH does this, it feels like it's out of necessity. Remember when Lincoln and his dad finally stuck it to the "insert bully" characters by walking in their underwear, and then the episode ended with them getting violated by security? That wasn't funny. Remember when Lincoln spent all his time on a project and because of an explosion his grade went down? That wasn't funny. Remember when the family finally started having fun in their pool, but Lily pooped in it? That wasn't funny.

Imagine if in the episode Testing Testing 1 2 3, it ended on the teacher saying Dash got an F. I guess that could've been funny for a second, but it also ruins the entire episode by making all of RD's efforts totally pointless. Some things are more important to the overall product than just getting one more laugh in. This is the exact same attitude that has killed other shows like Family Guy and Teen Titans Go.

But what's especially fascinating to me is how this show tries to be both a light hearted cartoon that teaches kids morals as well as high energy affair with toilet humor, twerking, and some pretty nasty character moments.

Did no one else feel super uncomfortable when characters turned on Lincoln just because they thought he liked some MLP rip-off, or when he couldn't get his house to be green initially, or when everyone thought he was bad luck? Or how about when Lincoln turns on everybody else, like when he started thinking he was a pompous rich kid just because he won a limo contest, or how he relished in the opportunity to be an only child, or when he was perfectly fine staying in another dimension for the rest of his life?

There's also plenty of other moments delegated to other characters: Rita would rather have community service then deal with her family, Lucy getting constantly ignored, any Luan pranking episode, Luna's out of nowhere 180 turn attitude in House Music, and countless other moments.

I know what I'm about to say is very presumptuous, but please hear me out. Mean spirited humor, on a fundamental level, cannot work on shows like The Loud House. The tone that this show has set up for itself simply does not mesh well at all with a lot of the plots I'm expected to get invested in. What doesn't work in shows like MLP, OK K.O.!, Community, and We Bare Bears works fabulously on shows like Rick & Morty, It's Always Sunny, Gumball, and The Venture Bros. The former shows know exactly what their style of humor should be given the context of their worlds, and the latter shows wouldn't be as memorable without all the downer endings and cynicism.

If you think TLH is tailor made for this kind of humor, then I guess I can't really argue with you there. But you know what, I could forgive all of that stuff before from the simple characters to the uncomfortable tone to Ronnie Anne if it weren't for one thing. Is this show at least fu-

It's Not Funny

I vividly remember when :iconirishhuskie2596: said he finally watched the Family Guy episode Brian's a Bad Father. And unlike a lot of people, he loves it. Why? Because it was funny. And that got me thinking. Can something be given leeway if it's funny? In my opinion, the answer is absolutely! Comedy is one of the hardest things to write, and to be able to nail it is a truly impressive feat. Unikitty can be annoying at times, but it's funny! Gumball can be a little cruel at times, but it's funny! Spongebob can be a bit too surreal at times, but it's funny! Sonic Boom can be a little cheesy at times, but it's funny! It's Always Sunny (and even Family Guy) can be pretty sadistic at times, but they're also really REALLY funny! 

So on top of all the problems I listed before, The Loud House is also painfully unfunny, which to me is the final nail in the coffin. This show gets just about every aspect of humor wrong as far as I'm concerned. What makes most comedy work is how unexpected it is. But TLH has no tricks up its sleeves due to how repetitive its style of humor is.

Everything is predictable. It was so obvious in Baby Steps that Clyde wouldn't have a brother. It was so obvious in Teacher's Union that the coach wasn't some big shot. It was so obvious in Roadie To Nowhere that Chunk wasn't homeless. It was so obvious in L is for Love that the letter wasn't for any of the Loud siblings. It was so obvious in City Slickers that Lori would hate the city. I know that comedies don't, and honestly shouldn't, have complex stories, but these plots are so much more annoying when the comedy doesn't work. This show doesn't have the luxury of telling one sentence plots like Gumball or Spongebob because there's not enough cleverness to the situations or dialogue to make up for the predictability.

Just look at Selfie Improvement. The entire time it's just Lori "literally" trying to make the perfect selfie and failing. The problem is that none of her "fails" are remarkable in any way, and it makes Lori look like an idiot, even going as far as forcing her boyfriend to come out of the hospital after getting his wisdom teeth removed to get in a selfie with her. And you've always gotta end on a joke apparently, so we get another stinger ending proving that Lori has learned nothing. You don't always have to end on a joke you know. MLP is pretty solid proof of this.

Oh I know, how about in Net Gains when every scene just felt like it was filling in time to get to the obligatory "equal participation" lesson? Everyone should get to play, even those with broken legs.

Can't forget Fool Me Twice when we had to wait through EVERY SINGLE LOUD MEMBER fainting at what their doppelgangers were doing. Two more things about that scene. 1. How did every double have the exact same voice as the originals. As a voice actor, I REFUSE to call that nitpicking because it makes zero sense, and it would've been fun to hear different actors do imitations of the main cast. 2. This is ANOTHER problem with having this many characters. Now that they've decided to not solely focus on Lincoln anymore, we have a new problem where the writers waste time trying to give every single character at least one line.

That second problem is basically the entirety of White Hare, which was both a cautionary tale of what the show could've been, as well as a time vampire on all senses. Lincoln didn't even learn any good lessons from the dream or the real life rabbits. I can't find the point anywhere you guys!

But if you really want a scene that perfectly encapsulates this serious problem, look no further than the bunker scene from No Place Like Homeschool.

Lincoln: Alright, guys. Let's get cracking.

[Leni starts clicking with her tongue.]

Luan: Would you mind not doing that?

Leni: Doing what?

[Lynn's stomach starts growling.]

Lana: Hey, shut your gut. I'm trying to read over here.

Lynn: How can you hear my stomach over Luna's tapping foot?

Luna: I'm just trying to drown out the noise of Lucy chewing her pen.

Lucy: It helps me focus. Otherwise, all I can think about is Lori's perfume.

Lori: Um, would you rather smell Lana's grubby old hat?

Lana: [offended] Wow. [the sisters start arguing] It's your fault.

Leni: It's totally your fault and I don't like your perfu-



You've made our point scene, everyone is annoyed. Get on with telling a story please!

"Here at The Loud House, we just want to have a safe environment where everyone feels equal. Even though we've focused a large majority of our show on just one character who happened to be the only boy of the cast. And we also have an episode where we say all girls are different, yet another one totally contradicting this where every Loud sibling gets wet at the sight of a hot guy (this is another reason why Lily's my favorite). And we also have an episode saying that all boys are the same too. And we're still gonna use Lincoln in the title cards for episodes he has nothing to do with. Equal rights!"

And finally, time to get a few more grievances off my chest before a conclusion.

Worst Moments of the Show

Get the Message - Watching Lincoln twerk zombies to death.

Heavy Meddle - Realizing they were revitalizing "that" cliche for some ridiculous reason.

Butterfly Effect - Pretty much everything.

Out on a Limo - Lincoln devolving into a pompous douche.

Save the Date - The moment when they kiss, because apparently that's what you're supposed to do when people say "actions speak louder than words." If that's the case, shouldn't Ronnie Anne know that what Lincoln was saying meant absolutely nothing? And couldn't she have given him a heads up before using the exact same insult on him? AND FOR THE LOVE OF GOD STOP HITTING HIM!!!

Come Sale Away - The ending.

Waiting Game - BORING!

A Fair To Remember - DUMB!

April Fool's Rules - OH GOD THE BABY'S DEAD! WHY DID YOU THINK SHE COULD SWIM INSIDE OF JELLO?!

Cereal Offender - Apparently cereal is enough to assuage hive mind bad behavior. Was everyone on bath salts in this one?!

Study Muffin - Buh... buh... buh... BULL SH-

Brawl In The Family - So what exactly does a one of a kind dress look like?

Vantastic Voyage - Why are you guys keeping this terrible van if Lynn Sr. already learned his lesson? And I will cut a fool if anyone says "sentimental value". IT DOESN'T WORK!!!

Making The Grade - Why is this Lincoln's fault again?

No Such Luck - Lincoln having his home taken away made me feel like- [link]

Shell Shock - You really have zero excuse to be such a twat to this guy. What did Milquetoast Loud ever do to you?

Relative Chaos - The moment I heard this would be an episode.

Back Out There - I hate this. I hate this. I hate this. Also, I'm pretty sure Ronnie Anne committed mail fraud.

AARGH! You For Real? - Guess what Clyde? There's also no tooth fairy, Santa Claus, Easter Bunny, or president of Aruba! Side note: I can't tell you guys how happy I am that the President of Aruba's name's Mike.



Change of Heart - Stop playing with this poor kid's emotions.

Yes Man - The second act with Lincoln reenacting EVERYTHING! Another reason there shouldn't be so many characters.

No Laughing Matter - And I'm supposed to care why?

Not A Loud - The episode.

Anti-Social - There really is no variation on Lynn Sr's episodes is there? 

City Slickers - Lincoln's fantasy about getting abused.

Teacher's Union - So I guess this school's entire curriculum is dependent on whether or not the teachers' "love lives" are doing well. 

Conclusion

I will never understand how this show got so popular. I'm certainly happy for all the people behind it, working on a successful cartoon is honestly the dream. But the characters are all too simple, the plots are predictable the second they're proposed, the writing is not clever enough to justify the simplicity, the cast is too large for such a small setting, the animation doesn't portray the show's chaotic tone well enough, most plots get way too mean spirited for a show of this caliber, and at this point I feel more like I'm watching the show out of necessity.

It lacks the grand scope of shows like MLP and RvB to justify the large cast. The writing isn't as clever as Spongebob or Gumball to justify the simple stories. The tone isn't dark enough to justify the crueler jokes like Rick & Morty or It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia. There isn't enough charm like in Community or We Bare Bears for the slice of life feeling. It squanders the potential of its huge cast with uninspired pair-ups and constant Clinclon McCloud episodes, and it seriously needs to take a note from shows like Camp Camp and TMNT in that department. And overall, everything about this show is one loud mixed bag.

But like I said before, this show isn't shy from competence.

Best Moments of the Show

Sound of Silence - Finally, Lincoln getting punished for a good reason.

Toads and Tiaras - Never before has a six year old's blessing been so meaningful.

Cover Girls - That might be one of the best punishments ever.

Attention Deficit - Hey, I knew they could be good parents!

Girl Guru - That line about everyone being different was good! Too bad it means nothing now.

Homespun - This is what Vantastic Voyage should've been.

Funny Business - This episode was why Luan used to be my favorite.

Frog Wild - This whole episode.

Pets Peeved - Hearing this would be an episode.

Potty Mouth - Youngest character to curse onscreen. Eat your heart out Stewie. [link]

Read Aloud - Watching Lincoln help Lola read. Awww.

The Crying Dame - And this is why Lily is my favorite.

Head Poet's Anxiety - Quick bro, get the camera! There's actually a good season 3 episode!

I've gotta tell you guys, it feels good to finally get this show off my chest. I mean, I'm still probably gonna watch it out of necessity, but I'm sure I'll manage to find some hidden gems in there occasionally. You never know with animation after all.


  • Listening to: Ninja Sex Party
  • Reading: GameInformer
  • Watching: Community
  • Playing: Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Eating: Sandwich
  • Drinking: Capri-Sun
Hey bro, mind if I have some time to myself to write my next review? 

RB'sB: This had better be important if it's worth making me get out of Fortnite.

Yeah, I've been meaning to ask about that. If you hate that game so much why do you even play it?

RB'sB: Because I know my friends need me since they're not very good at it, so I pretty much have to carry their weight all the time. 

Well I think your friends can wait, because I have a very important journal to write.

RB'B: *gasp* After all these months, are you finally doing what I think you're gonna write?!

That's right! I'm writing that fifth episode of Randomated Film Reviews. I've taken way too long to do another one of those.

RB'sB: ... Seriously?! You know that's not the review I was talking about!

I choose to push that to the back of my mind so that I can deny it as efficiently as possible. Now if you'd kindly-

RB'sB: No! I'm fed up with you man! You are gonna get in a lot of trouble if you don't explain yourself. I'm not letting you use this computer until you relent and write that journal!

Oh come on, this again? I thought you had gotten over this conspiracy of yours already.

RB'sB: I had a dream last night man that a bunch of people broke in and kidnapped you. But more importantly, they also kidnapped me to leave no witnesses. I'm telling you man, some day you're gonna realize how important it is that you write this journal. And when you do, the reality of the situation will hit you like a ton of bricks!

*smash*

What the Hell?!

RB'sB: When I said a ton of bricks I didn't mean just one.

Hang on, let me read this.

Dear Fellow DA User,

You should've listened to your brother. Did you honestly think we'd just sit back and and take this kind of mockery from a talentless hack who can't voice act for s*** or even make something that'd get over 2,000 views? Let us tell you the truth. You're just a pampered dough boy elitist who can't tell when a joke has gone too far. And you're finally gonna get what's coming to you. Right. About. Now.

P.S. Sorry for the insults. Mostly just trying to sound intimidating. I hope you don't hit your head on the way down.

Wait a minute? The way... down... Aw geez, what's that smell?

RB'sB: Hey, Carrick. I don't feel so good. *thump*

Little bro? Dude, can you hear me! *cough* Did these guys just *cough* Infinity War my brother? I'm... gonna... ugh, take a nap. *thump*

It felt like an eternity, but the following events were some of the most surreal moments I had ever experienced. I seemed to keep going in and out of consciousness, barely comprehending what was going on around me aside from the occasional bump on the head (seriously, can't these kidnappers kidnap a little more professionally?). Finally, I seemed to be immediately jostled to my senses after the blasting sensation of a bucket of water.

*cough* Ugh, next time could you put me in a handle-with-care box so that these morons can remember to treat their hostages with more respect? I felt like an ASDF cartoon.



???: Morons? Oh come now Carrick, is that any way to refer to your peers?

Wait a minute, I know that voice. Could it be-

???: That is right, for it is I, :iconpowerloud-girl:!

Oh, hey Alex. I was kind of hoping for someone like Mr. Enter, but you're pretty cool too. So, would you mind telling me where the f*** are we here?

Alex: I'll do you one better. Why the f*** are you here?

Already made an Infinity War reference mate. You'll need to be quicker than that.

Alex: That's not the point! You know exactly why you're here.

Wait a minute, is this about that April Fool's prank? Oh come on, that was months ago! Are you guys really so angry about a little joke that you had to kidnap, restrain, and take me out to God-knows-where?

Alex: It's not just about the prank! Not only was it super insulting to just say that no good TLH episode exists and not elaborate, but we weren't the ones who didn't move on. IT WAS YOU!!!

Wait, what?

Alex: Think about all the times you've mentioned that prank and fantasized us getting more and more upset about it. You just couldn't let it go could you? You thought your prank was so damn clever and and innovative that it was all we could think about. You want us to overreact so badly? Well guess what. Consider your wish gra- *lights on* Ah! Who turned the lights on? :iconmikethehuman113:! What are you doing?!

Mike: Oh, hey man. I was just getting some soda. This is my house after all. Oh hey Bro, what's up!

Mike, it's nice to see you! I'm just getting interrogated about my April Fools prank. Are you in on it too?

Mike: Nah, I'm just letting them use my house.

Oh boy, there are others?

Alex: As we're speaking, :iconloudcartoonist99:, :iconirishhuskie2596:, and :iconstargiantproductions: should be in the other room with another person you know. Oh everyone! Could you please bring in the leverage?

At that moment, three other deviants who I recognized immediately came in with a masked individual. It was pretty easy to guess who it was.

Seriously, you guys kidnapped my brother? If this is supposed to be my leverage, then you guys failed miserably.

RB'sB: Yeah, this guy couldn't give two s***s about what you guys do to me. Last week I poured molasses in his microphone and convinced him the cat did it.

I should've known there was no way to hold a bottle with no thumbs.

Alex: Well, I guess I should've seen that coming. Fine, there are other ways to get you to review it. If you don't make a journal for TLH, then we'll force you to watch your favorite movie on loop!



Alex: Haha! Now what do you think?

Oh God no! Please, anything but th-

RB'sB: Carrick! 

What do you want man? I'm in the middle of writing a review.

RB'sB: Wait a minute, let me see that. *skim* This isn't a review. It's just a poorly written skit with caricatures of ourselves getting kidnapped by caricatures of your friends. Do you honestly think they would kidnap you just because of a prank journal?

Well, not exactly but-

RB'sB: And there's no way you'd be fine with them hurting me, and there's no way you'd consider watching a bad kid's flick torture. You do realize there are actual forms of torture out there? Hell, you've experienced a real form firsthand! Remember that time you were sleepy and tried to wake yourself up with water, but you were laying down so you started to choke?

Well, I guess I had to find out about waterboarding somehow.

RB'sB: For the love of God man, you have been egging these good people on for months with this review, and you're not even gonna be able to write it! The reason I came in here was to tell you that Mom's ready to go. You gotta go to camp man.

Well, I thought maybe I could do a quick speed review that was a couple of para-

RB'sB: Oh no! No no no no NO! The moment you get back home, not only are you going to write a full fledged review for The Loud House like your Adventure Time journal, but you are going to make a whole week out of it with comparisons and various other memes!

But-

RB'sB: NO BUTS!!! And stop writing these cringey skits man. Just get to the review, nobody wants to sit through your awful writing.

All right fine! Geez, you win, I'll write a review for The Loud House! Well everybody, here's the announcement. Once again, I'm gonna be going to camp today, which means you won't be hearing hide nor hare of me for a whole week. But once I get back on the 14th, I am hitting the ground running with an entire week dedicated to TLH. Whichever week that is will be up for debate, but still. Sorry if I offended anybody with this really odd storyline, and sorry to those who wanted a conclusion, but my brother's right. I just need to get to the good stuff from now on and stop dangling bait in front of you guys.

So, some time this month, you guys will be getting a REAL Loud House review. No tricks. No pranks. No skits. 100% genuine material about why I don't like the show. Even though the storyline I wrote was ridiculous, I sincerely believe you guys deserve a solid explanation. Also, that really is my brother's reasoning for playing Fortnite. Here's to hoping it's one of my best works yet!

Until next time, I'll be seeing you guys in about a week. Don't do anything I wouldn't do ;)
  • Listening to: Hamilton
  • Reading: GameInformer
  • Watching: Community
  • Playing: Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Eating: Burger
  • Drinking: Milk Shake
I don't know about you guys, but old habits tend to die hard. It was a bout a year ago when I made the editorial titled Is Filler Always a Bad Thing?, and it's still remains to be one of my favorite written projects to this day mainly for how unique it was. So unique that I never made another editorial in the same vain ever again.

Well, I say enough of this silence! I have plenty of storytelling elements to discuss with you guys, and this has been on my mind in particular for quite a while.

See, if you've read my Randomated Film Reviews, you'll know that I take quite a lot of offense to creators that use narration in a lazy fashion, as do many critics. But I've also praised narration techniques in other films, so where is the line drawn? 

I'm sure everyone has their own standards. Hell, most people probably don't even care at all. But I think you guys are as curious as me considering our fields of vision. 

Now, I'm not saying that this is editorial is 100% fact, but I'm gonna try my best to be as objective as possible when it comes to how to properly implement narration. So, why don't we start with the reason everyone hates narration in the first place.

Tell, Don't Show (wait a minute)

Part of why people have such a big bone to pick with this framing device is that it doesn't fit. What makes movies and shows unique is that they are a visual medium. Anybody can just tell you a story, but the reason we come to movies in the first place is because they're able to imagine these ideas and stories in any way they want. 

So having some disembodied voice just tell us the story that's happening right before our eyes is not only strange, but quite frankly insulting. I've noticed this problem is especially prevalent in films based on books, and I can see why.

Books have leeway to use as much exposition as they want because we have to imagine the world and characters ourselves, and this is much easier to do when the author gets as detailed as possible. The more exposition the better honestly. 

So when it comes to adapting these stories, it's only natural that they'd borrow aspects like the characters talking directly towards us. But here's the thing, with adaptations come changes, a LOT of them most of the time, but why is it that filmmakers seem to always incorporate the most inappropriate part of books to film?

Having a someone explain everything to us like what the characters do, how the world works, a backstory, and sometimes even what's going on right in front of us is such a fundamental flaw. All it does is hurt the experience, because the point of film-making is to present a world and characters to the audience through the visuals (get used to me saying that word a lot). But believe it or not, having a narrator for the whole story doesn't bother me nearly as much as my next problem.

At Least Be Consistent

By far one of my least favorite executions of narration are the movies that have narration in the beginning for world building purposes, never show up again, and finally come back to bookend the film. You'd think a film having less narration would be better, but I'd much rather hear a disembodied voice throughout then just have one come in and out at the beginning and end.

At least films that use more narration are consistent and know what they're trying do. In and Out Films (as I'll refer to them from now on) are way more deplorable because they pretend to care more about the story telling but can't even bother to stick to what they present us with at the beginning. 

Movies like The Fifth Wave, Divergent, The Emoji Movie, and Sheldon-is-an-Alien the Movie are all deplorable excuses for media, and they all do this. It's just so undeniably lazy. I feel like I don't even need to say why considering these problems speak for themselves. The writers don't trust or respect us enough to think we can handle a film that tells its story through strong visuals and natural character interactions, so they just go and say it for us.

That'd be like at the end of No Country for Old Men Tommy Lee Jones just started explaining to us the significance of his dreams. Don't expect the film to just give you the answers, do what I do and look up an analysis video made to explain the significance for you.

People love characters like The Joker not just because he's crazy, but because he embodies chaos. He's an idea, and writers make sure to take us much time as possible to flesh this character out through engaging dialogue, chilling delivery, and strong visuals. In Suicide Squad, one of the worst films ever, there's a scene where The Joker literally says, "I'm an idea," all because the writers were too lazy and Jared Leto's performance was all too incompetent. F*** off.

Speaking of characters...

Who Are These Narrators Even Talking To?

All right, you need a narrator to establish some things too tough to convey with visuals. Fine. It's not necessary throughout the whole story so you just use the In and Out method. Whatever. But for the love of God, if you're going to be as minimal as possible with your storytelling, at least get your own narrator.

I'm probably making too big a deal out of this, but I'm just gonna say it, "Who are these characters f***ing talking to?!" An easy answer would be the audience, but that makes no sense. Once the narration is over, we see that these characters are normal people that have no idea they're in a film.

This goes back to my problem with consistency. It makes me so angry when writers just have the main character explain the plot to us despite the fact that they clearly have no fourth wall breaking abilities.

That's why some of my favorite parts of movies are when it's revealed that the characters were talking to someone or they're telling a story. Remember when in Coco Miguel was narrating his family's history, and then it's revealed that he was telling the whole thing to some rando he shoe shining? That was not only funny, but it also stayed consistent with Miguel's character. Plus, Pixar took the high road and DIDN'T have Miguel narrate again at the end about how happy he was despite the fact that we can clearly see that he is. Once again, f*** you Home.

Hell, Ratatouille goes above and beyond in this sense by having Remy narrate more consistently. And it works here because it never gets to obnoxious, there are still plenty of moments where we watch the story unfold naturally, and I'll admit that I have a bias when it comes to Patton Oswalt. I could listen to this guy do an audio book. And to top it all of, it's revealed that he was telling the whole story to his friends during dinner. Yes!

That's not to say narration is necessarily preferred, because a lot of my favorite sequences involve zero dialogue. Remember in Frozen when Anna and Elsa's parents died at sea? Pfft, please, that was freaking boring and too sad. Let's just have Josh Gad tell us that they died right after we literally watched their ship turn over. Because that's how you improve a story!

Hell, I'll even give credit to lackluster films like The Good Dinosaur, Angry Birds, and Rio. THEY have enough respect for their audience to tell the story visually. Heck, even The Boss Baby had a reveal that Tim was telling the story to his daughter with obvious exaggerations. The story wouldn't have been the same without that element.

And by George, I'm totally fine with movies that wouldn't be the same without narration. Especially ones where not only is it the characters narrating, but also the fact that they clearly know we exist and are telling the story to us.

I'm sure you all know who I'm gonna bring up. Deadpool, Ferris Bueller, and Captain Underpants are ripe for discussion, but I'm not gonna talk about them. I'm gonna talk about another film that I find to be criminally underrated.

I really like Disney's Hercules. No joke. I mean, obviously it's not perfect, and I do have a comparison planned with the titular character as the negative, but I find it pretty underrated.

Most people will say the highlights are the animation, the soundtrack, and literally anything revolving around Hades, but my favorite part is the framing device in the form of the Muses. The beginning of the film sets up a fake out where it seems like it'll have your run of the mill narrator (this time as a clever cameo by Charlton Heston), but then we get a funny role reversal with the Muses taking over, and I love these guys!

Not only do they help with transitions and framing the story, but they're also just a lot of fun. Remember when exposition could be entertaining and not mind numbing? Their songs are energetic and have so much style thrown in, and the occasional banter thrown in is excellent. Plus, it's in character for them to be talking to us since Muses are literally famous for telling stories. I'm not afraid to admit that the Muses are one of my favorite forms of narration in media!

Conclusion

If you want to have good narration, according to me, then follow these steps.

  1. Make sure the narration is crucial to the story.
  2. Make sure it's consistent and not just In and Out.
  3. Don't have a character talk to us when they clearly don't know we exist.
  4. And this is the most important step, have some f***ing fun with it.
And there you go! I hope you guys liked this little-

RB'sB: Hey man, just came to check on how that Loud House review is coming, aaaand you're still not writing it.

Give it a rest bro, I don't need to review that show. And f anyone has a problem with it, then they can bring it up to me directly. You here that everybody, I am not afraid!

RB'sB: Dude! Are you seriously puling an Iron Man 3 and calling these people out directly?! We are gonna get in so much trouble!!!

Well I hope that whatever they're planning they do it quickly, cuz I'm getting bored with life! So, want to binge the last season of TMNT with me?

RB'sB: .... Yeah okay. Maybe I am overreacting.

*somewhere else*

A rando can be seen running through a dark corridor. By the time they get to the door, they address their boss.

Rando: Ma-... Si-... Boss!!! We've got news!

???: All right, what's the trouble?

Rando: It's RaccoonBro.

???: Oh? Has he finally cracked and written that review for The Loud House?

Rando: No, he's written another editorial, and then called us out directly!

???: WHAT?! First he makes a joke journal saying a good Loud House episode doesn't exist. Then he goes silent for a month and returns with a journal about in-flight movies. Then he sells out and makes comparisons, and now he's insulting us?! The waiting game has officially ended. It's time to take direct action. Random crony, assemble the rest of the group, and bring me my diamond tiara.

Rando: Doesn't that kind of give away who you are?

???: Well we don't want to be too mysterious now do we?


  • Listening to: Ninja Sex Party
  • Reading: How to be a Pirate
  • Watching: TMNT 2012
  • Playing: Superstar Saga
  • Eating: Sandwich
  • Drinking: Apple Juice
Am I still dodging that Loud House journal? Absolutely! Am I about to jump on a dead trend? You bet your a** I am!

1) You have to post ALL the rules.

2) Answer 12 questions you have been asked and then create 12 questions for people you tagged.
3) Choose 12 people.
4) Actually tag these people.
5) Can't say you don't do tags. 
6) Tag backs are allowed.

:iconghffff:

1. Name a character you love that everyone else hates and explain why you love them.

I like KVN from Final Space. Simply put, he's just really freaking funny. Even if he wasn't, at least he contributes to the plot in meaningful ways.

2. Have you seen The Twilight Zone? If so what are your thoughts on it?

Nope.

3. If you could have a crossover with any characters who would they be?

Please give me Gravity Falls and Ducktales! And to be even more crazy, RWBY and Red vs Blue would be wizard.

4. What is your favorite Anime show/movie?

Even though I don't watch that much of anime, I'll go with Freeza's representation in Super. It was really cool.

5. Who are your top 10 most hated characters?

Check this f***in' s*** out!!! Favorite/Least Favorite Male and Female Characters

6. What do you think of Mr Rogers?

A childhood favorite who I have nothing but respect for.

7. Who are your favorite villains?

Bill Cipher, Dr. Facilier, Thanos, Joker, Aku, Anti-Pops, Shredder, Lord Boxman, Felix and Locus, Mr. Poopypants, Discord, TFS Perfect Cell, and others I know I'm forgetting.

8. Which characters do you consider overrated and which characters do you consider underrated?

Ronnie Anne and Star Butterfly are overrated, and Prohyas and Vambre deserve more love.

9. Who is your favorite couple in fiction?

Belle and the Beast are nice, and Deadpool has great chemistry with his girlfriend.

10. Favorite comic characters?

Deadpool, Spiderman, Iron Man, Bruce Banner, Rocket Raccoon, and Thor. I don't feel like mentioning any DC guys.

11. Who is the person you most want to meet?

Mel Blanc if we're talking dead people, the Game Grumps when it comes to right now.

12. Is there a fictional character you wish you could meet in real life? And if so who would it be?

Pinkie and Grizz would be a lot of fun.

:iconinfraredtoa: 

1: What toys did you played with when you were a kid?

Connect Four, dinosaurs, Play-Doh, and a bunch of Toy Story toys.

2: Highway to Hell or Stairway to Heaven?

Highway baby!

3: Top 10 Fictional Crushes?

Yeah, no thanks.

4: Carl, what do you want? You got to eat to keep your strength up man (In other words, what is your favorite food)

I hope they have lots of spaghetti! And pizza.

5: Do you have any idea what the fourth question was referencing?

Aqua Teen?

6: Let's pretend you have all the Star Wars movies and none of the original trilogy, what would you rather watch? The Prequels? or The Force Awakens trilogy?

Honestly, the prequels.

7: Favorite Memes?

Robbie and Sanic.

8: What shows are you currently watching? Order them from least favorite to favorite.

The Venture Bros, TMNT 2012, Soul Eater, South Park, F is for Family, Voltron Legendary Defender, and those are all the ones that I'm simply catching up on that aren't current. Can't order them yet.

9: Favorite type of males and females?

Hyper fun lovers, sarcastic wise crackers, jerks with hearts of gold, adorable children (with good actors), and benders of reality.

10: Coke or Pepsi?

No soft drinks for this boy!

11: Favorite TV Show from the 20th Century discounting the 2000s?

Um... Looney Tunes I guess.

12: Favorite Fictional Franchise and Favorite Character from said franchise? Explain those choices.

Nope, can't answer that.


:iconsukoshi13:

1. What do you believe makes a healthy romantic relationship between two characters?

They're able to function and be entertaining by themselves and are even funnier and entertaining together.

2. Name a pairing you despise or dislike that seemingly everyone else supports, and explain why you don't support it.

Lincoln and Ronnie Anne are not a couple to me. They are an abusive relationship that always makes me ridiculously uncomfortable, and City Slickers is a prime example of this. 

3. What do you believe makes a strong introduction to a new series?

Clearly identifying all the characters and establishing the tone of the series.

4. What are some ways a very nice, optimistic, bubbly, cheerful character can be prevented from getting annoying?

Have other characters for them to work off of and have a really good actor who can keep up with the character's personality and remain endearing.

5. If one were to make a film that takes place in the setting of Who Framed Roger Rabbit decades after the original story's events, which decade (ex: 1960s, mid-1990s, early 2000s, etc.) do you think would lead to the most interesting story?

Modern times without question.

6. To expand upon the previous question, who do you think should be the main character(s) or have a major cameo(s)?

New characters with Roger coming back for a bit. And lets's get some ponies in there!

7. How can you properly write a hypocritical character without making him/her unlikable?

Have a cathartic calling out moment for the character to finally self reflect.

8. How can you make a cute, soft, innocent, kind-hearted, socially awkward girl stand out among others in her cliché?

Give her a compelling backstory and maybe make her funny.

9. What is a film or cartoon you like that most others seem to hate? Why?

I wish more people would give Mighty Magiswords a chance. The complaint that it's on fast forward isn't even a factor anymore.

10. What is the worst example of character derailment you've seen WITHIN a series, and how could it have been prevented?

Non Compete Clause made me HATE Rainbow and AJ. They couldn't even learn to not constantly bicker with each other at the end. F***. This. Episode. In the flank!

11. Who is the best example of a character who under-stayed his or her welcome?

Gotta go with Vizzini from The Princess Bride. The film became very mediocre after his death.

12. An adult cartoon/anime is forced to be re-dubbed by 4Kids. Just to see the humorous results, what would you want that poor cartoon/anime to be?

I wonder how they'd handle Adult Party Cartoon and The Nutshack.


:iconthenightwolf38:

1. what show has the best animation?

Honestly, Wander Over Yonder impresses me the most.

2. Favorite food?

Spaghetti and Pizza.

3. what do you like and dislike most about me?

You are fun to talk to and give me new perspectives when it comes to animation. I won't say your grammar, so instead I'll say that you need to draw more.

4. is there any show that you want to watch but u haven't gotten around to yet for whatever reason?

The Simpsons, any anime, and Futurama.

5. What cartoons do u not like but others enjoy?

The Loud House, Star vs, Adventure Time, and Tangled the Series.

6. whats the dumbest thing uve ever heard anyone say?

Trump trying to bring the argument that video games cause youth violence.

7. whats your thoughts on fetishes?(u may skip this one if ure not comfortable answering)

Skip.

8. Does bold and brash really belong in the trash?

I'd buy it.

9. Digimon or pokemon?

Digimon just for that kick a** theme song.

10. is every villain really lemons?

The ones from Cars 2 are at least.

11. what meme do you feel was overused?

That Infinity War meme was way too soon and spoiled too many.

12. favorite emotional momment from any cartoon/anime?

Both Coco and Inside Out made me ugly cry.

All right, my turn!

1. If you could have an Avengers style team of cartoon characters, who's on it?
2. What is your favorite review of mine?
3. What shows would you like to get into?
4. Will hand drawn make a comeback?
5. Game Grumps fans, what are your favorite moments?
6. Have you checked out my Casting Call Club profile? P.S. please do.
7. Favorite numbers?
8. What moment in fiction made you drop your jaw the most?
9. What show would you like to use your powers to immediately end?
10. How did you become a Brony? Or would you like to?
11. Do you collect Amiibos?
12. Best and worst voice actors?

I tag :iconblackmoonpaladin:, :iconemeraldoftheocean:, :iconnegan1994:, :iconyodajax10:, :iconmikethehuman113:, :iconfiremaster92:, :iconthereviewer20:, :iconjoyofcrimeart:, :iconrejected-munchkin:, :iconpowerloud-girl:, :iconplagueknightreviewer:, and :iconjesusstewardson:
  • Listening to: Ninja Sex Party
  • Reading: Frankenstein
  • Watching: TMNT 2012
  • Playing: Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Eating: Pop Tarts
  • Drinking: Apple Juice
Hey guys, as if my love of Game Grumps wasn't clear enough, I spent all morning creating this little old number. Please let me know what you think of it!


  • Listening to: Ninja Sex Party
  • Reading: Frankenstein
  • Watching: TMNT 2012
  • Playing: Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Eating: Pop Tarts
  • Drinking: Apple Juice
Well it uh,.... it sure has been a while considering. I didn't exactly leave you guys off with the strongest of notes now did I?

RB'sB: What? Telling people that a good episode of one of their favorite cartoons doesn't exist and then not elaborate? What could possibly be low about that?

All sarcasm aside, it does feel good to get back into the swing of things after being gone for so long. With school coming to a close and my theater run of Treasure Island running smoothly, it's time to give you guys that journal you've been waiting for.

RB'sB: The best episodes of Gravity Falls season 2?

Again, no! I'm talking about all the movies I watched during my flights to and from Europe. I know that my trip was a month ago, but I still honestly have plenty to talk about with you guys after having watched nine movies total. Can ya really blame me? Twenty hours isn't very easy to pass by.

Enough stalling. Here's a mini review for every movie I watched on my plane rides!

The LEGO Ninjago Movie

The first LEGO movie was an untouchable masterpiece by every sense of the word. The next movie may not have been as powerful but still held onto the same spirit and was even funnier in some aspects. And the third LEGO movie was very very okay.

I was not too excited about the LEGO Ninjago movie when it was first announced. The animation looked stellar, but nothing else really stood out. Choosing Ninjago as the third film in the franchise by itself is a pretty perplexing move. I know the show has been around for a while, but I'm not sure if it's popular enough to warrant a movie. Hell, to even call this a Ninjago movie is honestly giving it too much credit. I've seen quite a bit of the show. It's not half bad. It just couldn't keep my interest. But even as a casual onlooker I could tell that this movie is pretty horrendous as an adaptation.

Not helping is that none of the voice actors from the show are in this film. This isn't the worst thing ever, but it's still really distracting. I know it's important to get big names for animated films, but MLP managed to keep the cast intact while still having celebrities. So why couldn't this?

Another drastic change are the characters themselves. The only things they have in common are the names. So that's one point on The Last Airbender at least, but names are the bare minimum. Not one person acts like their TV show counterparts. Jay has a Pakistani accent, Cole is a DJ, and Zane is still a robot but is nowhere near as subtle.

The plot as a whole also feels incredibly disjointed. It starts with news anchors telling us about the team, and the editing is so fast and nonsensical I can't wrap my head around any of it. Every ninja is severely inconsequential to the story and are literally summed up in one sentence. They could be cut out entirely and leave no difference. The entire first act feels incredibly rushed, which makes sense given that both fans and non fans of Ninjago don't know any of these characters. They're certainly not the same ones from the show. The pacing gets better after the first act ends, but everything still feels disconnected with a real lack of consequence.

That last part can be blamed on the humor. While the first two LEGO movies felt cohesive and decisive with their tone, Ninjago is all over the place going for "LOL, I'm so random" style humor that we're used to from most YouTube Poops. I love a good YTP, some of my favorite videos use this format.



That being said, I don't think that style meshes well with a feature length film. I can only take the randomness for so long before I start to get a migraine. Jackie Chan is not a very good storyteller.

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention. The film starts with Jackie Chan telling the story to a little boy that walks into his shop. It's not very interesting and doesn't reappear until the end of the film. I may have hated the kids from The Book of Life, but at least they were a consistent part of the film. Why was this even here? Was Warner Bros. trying to brag to DreamWorks about how they managed to use Jackie Chan more in one film than Kung Fu Panda did in three? (Seriously though, Jackie has more lines in The Nut Job 2 than in the entire KFP trilogy.)

That's not to say this film is without merits. I mentioned the ninjas are virtually nonexistent,and that's because this film is really about Lloyd and his evil dad Lord Garmadon. Most people say that their relationship is the best part of the film and.... yeah, it totally is. The have nice chemistry, and it's incredibly heart warming to see their bond grow throughout. It was one thing I honestly had to look forward to with this fiml other than the gorgeous animation. And I'd be lying if I said this film didn't have plenty of chuckle-worthy moments as well. Plus, the positive side of having such a fast pace is that scenes don't linger for too long and the jokes that don't work pass by very quickly.

Other than that, it's gonna take a while for the Warners to pick up the pieces of this mess. And I'm giving this film a 6/10.

The Hangover

A little something you all should know about me. Despite being an aficionado of all things comedy, I have missed out on a lot of what people consider to be the best comedies. Austin Powers, Hot Shots, Horrible Bosses, and until now, The Hangover. One thing I knew about this film was the countless amount of derivatives it inspired. The sub genre 'figuring out what happened last night" seemed to become prevalent thank to this film. And after watching it, I can see why.

The Hangover, above all else, is a really funny movie. And thank God for that. I have seen one too many of these kinds of films that try to be funny by being loud, raunchy, and nothing else of substance. But The Hangover had me in stitches the whole way through. 

I can't exactly say why this film is funny, but I think a good reason for this is the wonderful cast we follow. I am a big fan of Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, and especially Ed Helms for more than obvious reasons. Unlike most adult comedies, these three are actually very likable. Phil is is fun  and foolhardy, but he won't be afraid to lay down the law and take things seriously. Stu is neurotic and immediately sympathetic due to the abusive relationship he's in (finally, an abusive female on male relationship that ISN'T treated like it's funny). And Alan is one of the most relatable characters ever for me due to his social ineptitude and need to fit in.

But seriously, and I know I'm biased, but Ed Helms probably has some of the best line deliveries here.



But here's the tricky part. My rule of thumb when it comes to rating comedies is that I'll generally only give them a nine at best. The main reason being that once you've seen them once, there isn't too much rewatch value once you know all the jokes. So is The Hangover more like This is the End and Ted where it's really funny but not much else, or does it fall more into the category of Scott Pilgrim and The Emperor's New Groove where I feel the need to watch it multiple times. I'm honestly not sure.

The Hangover, as funny as it is, really is about as good as its rated R counterparts and isn't even really as funny as most of them. But there's one thing it 's got that most others don't... a really good story. 

I've said before comedies don't need a story to be funny since jokes come first. But this film does such a good job of enfolding the two elements together. The hangover isn't just a comedy, it's a mystery thriller! I was right along with these characters wondering what the f*** was going on. Seeing all the pieces fall into place little by little was incredibly satisfying to watch. I felt like I was apart of these characters' journey, and it was honestly quite thrilling. So going back with the knowledge of hat happened is honestly a good enough experience to push this film into excellence for me! I'm ot sure if it's one of my favorites of all time, but we'll see how it holds up. And I'm giving this film a 10/10.

Justice League

I think I have some explaining to do. You all may recall a status update where I said Justice League wasn't that bad.

RB'sB: Wasn't that bad? Dude, you practically acted like it was one of the best superhero movies you've ever seen! 


All right, so I may have overreacted at the time when I first watched it. But can you really blame me? Why did it take DC THIS long to make a film that I liked? And upon further inspection, I can safely call this film a guilty pleasure of mine.

RB'sB: So then you don't like it?

Well, I mean, technically no. Justice League, objectively speaking, is a pretty crappy film. The acting and writing is just as bad as previous installments (double time for Wonder Woman's scenes), Steppenwolf might be one of the worst villains ever of all time, and the CGI is pretty laughable despite costing over $300 million! Remember when I talked about budget in my Captain Underpants review sying that the amount doesn't matter compared to how you use it. Well in this case, I think it does matter, because a film this expensive should not look so cheap! I haven't seen effects this bad since... well, the last DC movie!

But G** damn it, there's something about this movie that I just find endearing. Not even in a so bad it's good kind of way. I know thismight sound a little weird, but I think it's the tone. We finally have a DCEU film that has the proper tone of a superhero flick. I'm sorry, but unless your superhero film is as grounded as Logan, you just can't get away with all the melodrama prevalent in Man of Steel, Wonder Woman, and the other two that won't be mentioned here.

There's not much else to say other than this film was kind of fun. The action was goofy, the interactions were interesting, and the characters were even funny. Aquaman was definitely a highlight for me, especially one scene where he tries to act tough but starts opening up about his true feelings. It just takes him a whil to realize Diana used her lasso on him. That s*** is funny. XD

And hey, Superman is finally acting like Superman! Oh yeah, I guess that's a spoiler, but you all knew he was coming back. I guess I can appreciate that others had to actively bring him back as opposed to him saying, "Dah, dere was a malfunction in da Kryptonite and I was just in a healing coma!" Unfortunately, this doesn't solve his "over-powered" problem, which would'nt be an issue if all DCEU films' conflicts weren't solved by brute force. Hell, even Wonder Woman is solved with brute force!

RB'sB: Dude, we get it, you don't like Wonder Woman. Quit your b***hin' and move on.

...Yeah, okay. On the bright side, at least it looks like Teen Titans go to the Movies will be a much more faithful film to the comics. I'm not even kidding. This movie looks great.



And I'm giving this film a.... oh s***, I don't know what rating to give this film. Uh, raincheck?

Loving Vincent

I've heard "filmmaking marvel" thrown out several times, but I still was never entirely sure what the true definition of it was. After seeing Loving Vincent, I think I finally understand what people are talking aobut when they use this term.

For those who don't know, Loving Vincent is essentially a tribute to the brilliant artist Vincent Van Gogh, and every single frame is one hand drawn oil painting. You may have heard reviewers compare some films to a moving painting. Well, this film literally is one, and it is beautiful! It's quite clear that a lot of love and care went into every single frame, and I honestly don't think we'll ever get anything like this. And if we do, it'll likely just be deemed a rip off.

The story itself is very compelling. I was as intrigued as the main character to keep peeling more and more layers off of this mysterious man. The conclusion to his story may be bittersweet, but it doesn't feel too dour.

However, there was one thing I was afraid of coming into this film, and my fears were kind of confirmed. This movie, much like Baby Driver, feels very style over substance. I say this because without the unique aesthetic, I doubt I would've been as invested in this film as I was, and that is a pretty big issue. 

I don't want to s*** on the story too much, but it's just not the kind of thing that I'm into. Nevertheless, I'm still very happy to have watched this film, especially since I had just gotten back from a museum that featured many of his paintings. How apt! And I'm giving this film an 8 out of 10.

The Princess Bride

Yet another beloved classic that I somehow hadn't seen yet. Now, you all know I'm not too afraid to voice an unpopular opinion. I live for those moments. I say this because I thought The Princess Bride was amazing... right up until Wallace Shawn's character died.

Up to that point, I was having a blast with everyone. Westley and Buttercup are adorable, and they don't get too cringey with their love thanks to the kids from The Book of Life done a thousand times better in the form of Fred Savage! This kid was much less annoying, and his relationship with the grandfather felt genuine. It also helps that when they cut to him it wasn't annoying or too distracting from the story.

But the real stars for me are the three outlaws. Fezzik is a gentle giant and is acted surprisingly well by Andre, Inigo needs no real introduction due to how cool and relatable his arc is, and Fizzini is (say it with me now) inconcievably wonderful!

But that's the problem. Once Fizzini is axed off, I just wasn't as entertained as before. I'd like to quote my friend Aston here (who was talking about Deadpool at the time). "This movie unfortunately blew its load way too early." And that's pretty disappointing.

For one, I started to think about all the feminists rallying for stronger female characters, and I think Buttercup may be one of those reasons. I feel no shame in saying that she reminds of Elise from Sonic '06 in that she doesn't do anything to help. For example, when William is attacked by a rodent of unusual size, she just kind of stands back while he gets mauled. And then when the creature starts coming towards her, she calls out for his name despite him having a massive bite wound. I could be remembering the scene wrong, but there were plenty of other moments like this where she has to be saved because of her total lack of skill.

Also, I cannot stand the story trope of someone killing themselves just because they can no longer be with their loved one. I know it's supposed to show how much they cannot live without each other, but I find that mindset to be very unhealthy. To all my single watchers reading this, you don't need someone else to make you whole. You are already a full person, and it's up to you to find someone else who is already whole. Otherwise, your relationship will be very unhealthy and even dangerous. In this case, suicidal-dangerous. So please don't feel ashamed or incomplete for being single.

One last minor gripe that felt a lot bigger for me was how they handled the Prince's punishment for all the crap he did. After being put into a machine specifically designed to make you feel everlasting pain, Westley says they should tie him up and leave him. Seriously?! That's it?! I know this sounds very minor, but think about all the greatest villains in history. Odds are that at the end of the film they wre given some sort of comeuppance that was ridiculously satisfying. That's what catharsis is all about! Bill Cipher gets punched in the eye, Dr. Facilier taken to the other side, Frollo burns in flames, Aku is viciously stabbed to death, and so many more! Tying your villain up and leaving him in his own castle where someone would probably let him loose anyway is NOT satisfying.

So yeah, I totally think this movie is a classic... as long as we're talking about the first act. And I'm giving this film a 7 out of 10.

The Hitman's Bodyguard

A film about Deadpool and Nick Fury teaming up? How could this not be critically acclaimed?! In all seriousness, I wasn't exactly anxious to this film considering the middling reviews it got. But some of my friends apparently watched it on the ride to Europe, and they couldn't stop raving about this film. 

Well, they were so emphatic that I had to see it myself. So I guess this means my friends are the equivalent of a clickbait website.



Luckily, unlike most clickbait sites, I wasn't disappointed. But I also wasn't as big a fan either. The Hitman's Bodyguard is an okay comedy film mixed with a fantastic action film! Most of the comedy, while never cringey, isn't anything special, and I can't think of a single memorable line. But I did greatly enjoy the scenes where Ryan and Samuel's characters were talking and learning more about each other.

In fact, their dynamic as a whole is very interesting to watch. There's never really a point where they become "friends" until the very end, and even then you could argue it's more of a colleague relationship like Batman and Superman as opposed to George and Harold. This dynamic also helped excuse the "split-up" scene, because they were never friendly with each other to begin with. They just hate each other, and this was the tipping point for both characters. Sure, they rejoin, but again, they do it because they have s*** to do.

This film has surprisingly huge stakes. Gary Oldman is a formidable dictator, and he once again shows off his fantastic accent range. Plus, the mortality rate and destruction help add to the seriousness of the conflict. And things never get too melodramatic thanks to the dynamic between our two leads. Even though they're not very funny, they're still entertaining.

But the action in this film is some of the best I've ever seen. There is a lot of hand to hand and close quarters combat, and the editing doesn't fall into the usual cliches of shakiness and too many cuts. At least not too much. Every stunt, explosion, crash, punch, and shot feels ridiculously real, and I was only taken out of the action a couple of times. Like that one point in the trailer where Ryan Reynolds is launched out of the car and immediately gets back up. Yeah, you're not walking for a while after that bub.

So I guess you could call this one of my films that I like that everyone else hates. Fine by me, that just means I won't have to share it. MWHAHAHA!!!! And I'm giving this film an 8 out of 10.

Django Unchained

About a month ago, I realized something kind of strange. I hadn't seen a single Quentin Tarantino film in my life. Not one! Sure he tried to justify the actions of a statutory rapist, but he's still one of the most influential directors of all time.

So then I watched Inglorious Basterds. Masterpiece. Both Kill Bill films. Super cool. The Hateful Eight. Fine. And Django Unchained. Pretty good. 

I don't think it's quite as good as most people like :iconnegan1994: say it is, but I certainly think there are plenty of parts that deserve that reputation. As expected, this film is bloody, violent, and holds no bars. Quentin really is a master at not only making scenes as violent as possible, but also making them super cathartic. You've got Nazis, murderers, wedding crashers, and now slave owners. What's next, cult leaders?

RB'sB: Well, his next film is gonna be about Charles Manson. So...

Holy crap! See what I mean guys?! Watching Quentin rewrite history like this is so freaking cool! And as expected, we've got some pretty cool characters to boot. Unsurprisingly, Cristoph Waltz steals the show as the German assassin who hates slavery yet uses it to his advantage.

Dr. Schultz: But, that being said, I still feel very guilty about it.

I love that line. Candie and Stephen are wonderful antagonists, and I honestly had no idea that such a relationship between master and slave existed. I honestly can't think of another movie about slavery where a black man is one of the villains. Unless we're counting The Birth of a Nation, but we don't talk about that film.

Hell, this film even fixes a problem I have with The Princess Bride in the form of Django.... 's wife. How? Because she gets just as punished and abused as Django himself, arguably even moreso! Because of this, even though we don't spend much time with her, I feel way more sympathy towards than Buttercup. Physical abuse can go a long way when it comes to sympathy in your film. I mean f***, the first shot we get with Buttercup is her yelling at Westley to do stuff. Hildi's first shot is her getting branded in the f***ing face! (I could be wrong, but it's one of the first shots at least)

However, this film isn't one of my favorite Tarantino flicks for a few reasons. One, it honestly feels a bit too long. Sure, it's around the same length as his other films, but there was a point where I felt like thplot could've ended but just kind of didn't. They kind of do this in Captain Underpants when Mr. Krupp accidentally makes Poopypants huge, but that made more sense because the film is around 90 minutes. Django Unchained, however, is way over 120 minutes, so it just felt unecessary.

Also, and I'll probably get disagreed with on this, but I didn't find Django himself to be that interesting of a character. I'm sure part of it was how Dr. Schultz was stealing most of the show, but another reason is that I don't find Jamie Foxx to be that good of an actor. I don't know, something about his articulation and pacing just rubs me the wrong way for some reason. And once Dr. Schults (spoilers) gets killed, Django has to carry the rest of the film by himself, and it's just not as interesting. Fortunately, unlike with Fizzini's death, this happened much later in the film, so it wasn't a huge deal breaker.

This movie is definitely above The Hateful Eight, but just a bit below Kill Bill. And I'm giving this film an 8.5 out of 10.

All right, that's all of them! How do they rank?

7. Justice League
6. The LEGO Ninjago Movie
5. The Princess Bride
4. Loving Vincent
3. The Hitman's Bodyguard
2. Django Unchained
1. The Hangover

RB'sB: Didn't you say you watched 9 films?

Oh yeah, I just rewatched Captain Underpants and Coco. My opinion hasn't changed on the former, and I appreciate the latter even more now. And there you have it!

RB'sB: I still think it's a bad idea to post this review without addressing The Loud House dude.

Whatever, I'm already posting it. To quote Bubsy, "What could possibly go wrong?"

RB'sB: I've got a baaad feeling aobut this.


  • Listening to: Ninja Sex Party
  • Reading: Frankenstein
  • Watching: TMNT 2012
  • Playing: Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Eating: Pop Tarts
  • Drinking: Apple Juice