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October 31, 2014

Short-Lived Shows: Freakazoid!

by Adam Finley, posted Nov 27th 2005 10:08AM

freakazoidI love non sequitur humor and obscure pop cultural references. While both may seem easy, it takes a special kind of touch to really make them work. I've always been impressed with how The Simpsons works subtle references into the show, and even Family Guy does it in a much less refined, often more jarring manner. It's not enough, though, to just toss out items from the pop culture grab bag or rattle off detached phrases. There has to be a method to the madness. This begins to explain why on one hand I absolutely adored Freakazoid!, but on the other hand I sometimes found it wanting.

Freakazoid! was the animated adventures of a young computer nerd named Dexter Douglas who is sucked into his computer and turned into the titular hero. Freakazoid always manages to save the day, which is a miracle since he's pretty much a raving lunatic. The show was created for the Kids WB, but constant references to things like Ed Wood and F-Troop probably didn't endear a young audience who was used to, you know, humor they understood. If the character of Freakazoid was a kind of bizarre enigma, the show itself was even more so. Here was a cartoon with decidedly adult humor stuck in the same timeslot as average kid fare, safely hidden away from the older viewers who may have given it a chance to grow had they known it even existed. Nevertheless, the show was never able to sling its pop cultural absurdities with the same finesse as The Simpsons and others. The best thing that could be said about Freakazoid! was that it was very sharp, very witty, and very funny... for a kids show. I don't consider that an insult, as I think that's all it was ever trying to be.

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MW

I loved all the Freakazoid and non-Freakazoid vignettes, especially "The Huntsman," all about a superhero who never gets any work. The theme song (which was excellent and I still sing to myself even to this day) was usually longer than the actual short, which always consisted of The Huntsman asking the police chief if there was any crime, and the police chief saying it was a downtime. Brilliant.

Freakazoid! ranks right up there with The Tick in the underrated, hilarious, ahead-of-its-time, not-for-kids Saturday morning cartoon category.

January 01 2006 at 6:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ZipperSeven

The episodes with Ricardo Montalban were pretty good too.

December 01 2005 at 2:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sean P. Aune

"I must now consult my inner child!" *camera pans down to Freakzzoid's stomach* *muffled voice "Hello? It's getting awfully cramped in here." bwahahaahahaahahaha And the Norm episode rocked my socks. CLASSIC! I so want this show on DVD:(

November 29 2005 at 11:47 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
john

The theme song was great too. "...Freaka you, Freaka me!" Don't forget about his Freakadog, Foamy.

November 28 2005 at 3:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bill, the Wildcat

I remember when this show came on WB. My God, that show was funny! I loved watching all those WB cartoons that were produced during that time: Pinky & the Brain, Animaniacs and Tiny Toons. I still catch myself rattling off the theme songs to these shows for no good reason.

November 27 2005 at 11:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Stefan Hayden

Last time I was feeling blue about Freakazoid not being around I made my way over to Wikipedia which has not only a great artical about the show but xome great links to stories about the show.

November 27 2005 at 11:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bill, the Wildcat

I remember when this show came on WB. My God, that show was funny! I loved watching all those WB cartoons that were produced during that time: Pinky & the Brain, Animaniacs and Tiny Toons. I still catch myself rattling off the theme songs to these shows for no good reason.

November 27 2005 at 11:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
TheMatt

HUGBEES!!! Actually, there is concrete proof that "Freakazoid!" was the greatest cartoon in the history of everything. The proof, you ask? They had an entire show with Master Carpenter Norm Abram. Yes, "New Yankee Workshop" and "This Old House" Norm Abram. It was, in fact, the last episode of the series. Sniff, I still want to get my safety glasses autographed by Norm like Freakazoid did. Beyond that there is the fact that Jack Valenti played himself, and the ever-present Emmitt Nervend. @[=g3,8d]&fbb=-q]/hk%fg"

November 27 2005 at 11:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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