Looney Tunes Golden/Platinum Collections

Small Screen Specials, Series and Direct-To-Video
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Postby EricJ » August 7th, 2010, 1:52 am

I still stand by South Park's observation that the jokes, despite the pop-culture and shock-fodder thrown about like confetti, don't.....really seem to make much coherently funny sense. :?

It still feels like a snarky chip-on-shoulder assemblage of borrowed automatic-laugh references that can't quite concentrate on itself for a full scene of conversation (unlike the parody of the Simpsons, or SP's attempt to poke headlines), is trying to imitate everything else it's seen at random, and, in a word..."And Ben calls MY stuff 'Stream of unconsciousness'?" :P

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Postby estefan » August 7th, 2010, 9:30 am

Well, the Stewie Griffin "movie" would probably have gotten an R, but that was direct-to-video, so...

But I agree with Eric that Family Guy is just shock humour just for the sake of. I don't want to start a South Park vs Family Guy debate, but with SP, when Parker and Stone use crude humour, there's a point and meaning behind it that not only plays an importance in the story, but there's an under-lying reason why they go for shock humour or to push the envelope.

For example, when they wanted to create a gay dog character back in 1997, it was considered pushing the envelope, but really they were trying to give a pro-homosexual message in it. Now, you have gay characters in almost every primetime series, cable or network.

Or you have Terrance and Phillip. On the outside, they seem like just an excuse to use fart jokes, but they are also Parker and Stone poking fun at their critics as well as using the parent's reaction to show how society views crude humour or South Park in general.

Family Guy uses fart humour or gay characters, just for the sake of getting a couple of laughs. Nothing wrong with that, per say, I just prefer South Park's multi-layered jokes.

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Postby eddievalient » August 7th, 2010, 10:09 am

Except that South Park jumped the shark years ago. Consider this: In season one we had Big Gay Al's Big Gay Boat Ride where the message was "it's okay to be gay" and they included a pro-gay song on their Chef Aid cd. Good. A few years later, we saw The Goobacks and the message was "Mexicans suck, they're taking all our jobs". Disgusting. I stopped watching after that.
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Postby estefan » August 7th, 2010, 10:47 am

That wasn't the message I got from The Goobacks. I took it as them saying that people were overreacting that immigrants were going to take their jobs. The South Park citizens were hardly portrayed as sensible in the episode and even Kyle and Stan were more stupid than usual.

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Re:

Postby EricJ » August 7th, 2010, 1:00 pm

estefan wrote: I don't want to start a South Park vs Family Guy debate, but with SP, when Parker and Stone use crude humour, there's a point and meaning behind it that not only plays an importance in the story, but there's an under-lying reason why they go for shock humour or to push the envelope.


The episode where Park took on Guy was supposed to be a headline-satire on the Dutch Mohammed-cartoon flap, adding that if FG ever tried to use Mohammed for shock value, they'd just....throw it in with all their other pop-culture non-sequitirs for no reason, and it STILL wouldn't make any danged sense.

(And I repeat--Why is it that there is nothing funnier in the world than deliberately writing unfunny jokes?:
"Captain Kirk?"
"I'll be the Captain, you be Tenille: "
"Love will keep us together..." )

eddievalient wrote:A few years later, we saw The Goobacks and the message was "Mexicans suck, they're taking all our jobs". Disgusting. I stopped watching after that.


No, the message (as Edgy Un-PC has turn all cuddly and say, hey, we're all nice guys in the end), was "Try working to make your OWN country better, and there'll be no need to jump fences." (Also the townsfolk's idea to prevent the future by turning gay became a neat satire on the Arizona patrols, before the fact.)
The higher aspirations of Un-PC (which even Stoneparker can't always live up to, but manage a better average than most) is to say what's on the populist mind, that conventional wisdom or courtesy don't "allow" you to say in public, or in the fair-and-balanced protocol of news programs. Like, for example, "But we don't want to learn the languages of Lazy People". :P

Which, as "Drawn Together" notably sour-graped on their latest attempt, was what gave South Park its hook:
After a while, the predatory-comic "thrill" of a show setting out to throw around references to give the censors heart attacks begins to look egotistic a while, then robotically going through a shopping list of "What We Haven't Done Yet", and then just....pointless and thrown together. If some cartoons whine "What does South Park got that we ain't got, we shocked the censors, too!", the answer is what the wannabes Ain't Got is a POINT.

(Least of all FG, who can't keep their jittery lil' ADD mosquito brains on one idea for a whole two minutes without jumping up and doing an 80's reference...) ;)

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Postby Randall » August 7th, 2010, 2:17 pm

Kinda agreeing with Eric here. (Is that allowed? ;) ) I find both shows too crude for my personal taste, so I haven't seen either in years and cannot be considered any sort of authority; but from what I sampled earlier on, Family Guy seemed boring and pointless, while South Park at least did try to make actual stories with themes to them. Drawn Together is self-admittedly all about the shock, but their stories do tend to hang together better than what I saw on FG.

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Re: Looney Tunes..the Original Family Guy?

Postby droosan » August 7th, 2010, 4:09 pm

I've never 'gotten' the appeal of Family Guy or American Dad! (though, I don't begrudge those who enjoy them, either -- and quite a lot of folks do).

But I've watched most of the first season of The Cleveland Show over the past few months .. and have been surprised to discover that I rather like it..! :mrgreen:

---------

I don't see the Looney Tunes connection; that's very 'apples & oranges' ..

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Postby GeorgeC » August 7th, 2010, 5:02 pm

I don't care for much of Seth MacFarlane and his wares, either.

(I also consider MacFarlane an egomaniac and extremely arrogant. Those are not qualities that I find appealing...)

Very much one of those Friends/Seinfeld deals with me.

I know the shows are popular but I just don't see how people think his stuff is brilliant or ground-breaking in any way. It's pretty much mediocre and uninspired. Especially the Star Wars parodies. Very few laughs from me during those... They were straight up almost shot-for-shot redo's of the original films and were extremely boring to sit through for me!

South Park still has the ability to shock but can still be surprisingly cutting in its satire, too. There are at least 3-4 of those shows during a given season that I appreciate but still not enough to actually want to own the season sets.

I'm not so sure any of these shows will be that fondly remembered once they're out of production. They're a bit too topical and topically-written shows generally fade over time because they're too specific and don't address enough timeless issues.

I don't think their fanbases are as rabid as say fans for Star Trek and the original Star Wars. Granted, shows like Cheers and The Cosby Show had more viewers in their heyday while they were being produced but they don't have cons for most shows like that, either!
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Re: Looney Tunes..the Original Family Guy?

Postby EricJ » August 7th, 2010, 6:57 pm

droosan wrote:I've never 'gotten' the appeal of Family Guy or American Dad! (though, I don't begrudge those who enjoy them, either -- and quite a lot of folks do).


There is a majority of cult-level fans who watch it and nothing else, and who go out into the world to make sure a Stewie quote is heard in every corner of the globe...
Which suggests that the show is filling some psychological need they can't fill anywhere else--And given the other ADD theories about the show, it's a safe guess that for the majority of fans, it's the only show that speaks their language....Or more accurately, at their SPEED.

I joked about calling FG's rabid fanbase an "ADD support group", it's more like one of those rebellious websites that celebrates an illness instead of admitting a problem and going out to find treatment.

I don't see the Looney Tunes connection; that's very 'apples & oranges' ..


Again, LT had to play to a mainstream audience of movie-theater folks, and deliver the same kinds of jokes they saw in the movies and heard on the radio comedies, just a little sililer--

If Lotso was shocked by the standard Friz gag of a character shooting himself, can't think where Tex Avery's version would rank, in one of his nature cartoons:
Narrator: "With our nature cameras, we now show you a frog croaking: "
(Frog on lily pad pulls out gun, blows brains out, and falls into pond)
Theater card: "NOTICE: The Management is not responsible for the corny gags in this picture."
:P

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Re: Looney Tunes..the Original Family Guy?

Postby Dacey » August 7th, 2010, 7:11 pm

I've actually never watched an entire episode of "Family Guy," but I have seen a lot of clips from it online. While not all of it is "my thing," I will confess to finding quite a bit of it amusing. I also think that Stewie is a very funny, possibly even ingenious character.

"South Park" I haven't seen enough to really judge on any level, but the animation style/humor don't really seem like my cup of tea. Having said that, I do really want to see "Team America" someday, as I think it looks hysterical.

Really, the only "adult" cartoon I watch is "Robot Chicken," which I view online every time I get the chance. Yeah, some of it is tasteless, but a lot of it is really, really hilarious, and I find I often get more laughs from it in eleven minutes than I've gotten from the several FG clips I've sought out.
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Re: Looney Tunes..the Original Family Guy?

Postby LotsoA113 » August 7th, 2010, 11:34 pm

Honestly, Eric, I wasn't shocked by it at all (there are MUCH worse jokes in other toons) but
I was just mentioning it as an example of humour that MIGHT be considered un-PC by todays unbelievabley restrained world.
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Postby eddievalient » August 7th, 2010, 11:55 pm

People criticise FG for its completely random gags, but personally, that's exactly the reason I love it. For example, there's one episode (can't remember which right now) where Spider-Man rescues Cleveland and then makes reference to a gag from 3 or 4 seasons prior ("Everybody gets one, right Peter?" "Um, yeah"). I nearly fell off my couch laughing, both at the joke itself and at the fact that they'd waited so long to pay off the original gag (although it really helped that I'd seen the previous episode). I would say that, at its best, FG is among the funniest shows on TV. Not every episode is a gem, I know, but enough of them are to keep me coming back. I can't wait to see what they do with their Clue parody since the original movie is hilarious to begin with.
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Re: Looney Tunes..the Original Family Guy?

Postby EricJ » August 8th, 2010, 4:22 am

Dacey wrote:I've actually never watched an entire episode of "Family Guy," but I have seen a lot of clips from it online. While not all of it is "my thing," I will confess to finding quite a bit of it amusing. I also think that Stewie is a very funny, possibly even ingenious character.


Thought he was just supposed to be a ripoff of Pinky & the Brain... :P

In fact, when it first came on, I'd thought they were kidding, and that the show was supposed to be some satire on Edgy Prime-Time Cartoons, by ultimate-mishmashing all the existing genre cliche's together under one roof, Talking Dog included.
(Yes, I was that optimistically naive... :( )

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Postby Ben » August 8th, 2010, 7:23 am

Good discussion! :)

I haven't been able to plug into American Dad! at all, for whatever reason, and I was never a Family Guy, um, guy, but the one with Stewie dancing with Gene Kelly got me hooked and, for better or worse, I see the odd show where I can.

I must admit, though, that while the Blue Harvest special did pack in some funny moments, I didn't laugh out loud once at the Darkside spoof. Well, maybe once, at the traffic cop narration, but that's more because we do that here at home too and there was an additional angle to the joke.

But South Park is almost always consistent with what it tries to do. And, basically, the point is that there are no real stories to the episodes: it's about "four kids growing up in a little town called South Park", and that's as complicated as it gets. Again, it's true not every episode is genius, but Matt and Trey are the best satirists working out there today, and the very quick turnaround on those shows (less than a week!) shows how good they are considering the more "plotted" shows like Family Guy and the others have the usual nine-months time to refine gags, read-throughs, animation, etc.

It's all crude at the end of the day, but every now and then you do need to wash the palette from signing frogs and talking toys. While they're great - and superlative in their own ways - there's nothing like a bit of shock value to jumpstart things every once in a while (and to see topical moments so well skewered by people that have a point to make).


But most importantly...in short: Dacey, you HAVE to see Team America (the unrated one!) right NOW. :)

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Re: Looney Tunes..the Original Family Guy?

Postby Dacey » August 8th, 2010, 3:25 pm

LOL!

Will do, Ben. Will do. ;)
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