The cult hit, created by Mike Judge ('Office Space,' 'King of the Hill'), ran for 200 episodes from 1993–97, and produced a spin-off ('Daria') and a movie ('Beavis and Butthead Do America').
Rumors about the show's return began circulating after the characters made a cameo in 'Jackass 3D.' MTV hasn't set a premiere date yet, though it did say it would happen this summer. The network also announced that the new show 'Teen Wolf' would debut on June 5.
When the series returns, the two metal-loving slackers will still issue snarky commentary, but instead of watching terrible grunge music videos, Beavis and Butt-head will take on more contemporary acts.
The show premiered with an hour-long special event back in November (which we reviewed here) and garnered critical acclaim and super-sized ratings for Cartoon Network, scoring 2.5 million viewers and outperforming the rest of the network's programming.
Those first two episodes were repeated over the last two weeks, but tonight's episode, 'Welcome to Happy Harbor' is the first all-new episode we've seen since that November debut. Join us after the jump for our thoughts.
Light spoilers ahead.
With the release of the 'Yogi Bear' movie on Dec.17, a new generation of viewers were introduced to the character, now animated in glorious CGI. For those not familiar with Yogi, Jellystone Park or Ranger Smith, here is a primer for you.
First of all, Fox has found the most success in the animation department and if they gave one more show to Seth MacFarlane, they'd have to just give him control of the entire network. It's cheaper that way.
Most importantly, 'Napoleon Dynamite' is a comedy that screams to be animated. The larger-than-life characters of the original 2004 comedy seemed like a cartoon to begin with, so it's a natural transition for the uncomfortable, quirky comedy about the most awkward high school teenager since my pimply-faced days as a high school dork. (Seriously, I had a face that could have caused the government to legally prohibit me from swimming in the Gulf for fear of a widespread oil spill.)
But it's not the only comedy that would work in animation. Here are five other classic comedies that would look good after an ink-and-paint makeover.
The nice thing about the annual Halloween special of 'The Simpsons' is that the creators are free to tell stories without worrying about such handicaps as continuity (not that it's ever got in the way of a good story). They can kill anybody in any of the Halloween stories. Since it doesn't "count" as a true 'Simpsons' story, it doesn't matter. The imagination runs free.
The Halloween episodes have always been an annual highlight of the show. This year's version, while not perfect, was the best in a while. Even after 21 years, when the concept has long been rendered cliché and predictable, the writers pull out a surprise or two.
As a New Jersey native, I should have been really offended by tonight's episode of 'South Park.' Sadly, I was laughing too hard to notice. When the creators get an episode right, there is nothing else on television quite like it; it's very in-your-face satire.
Obviously, this episode was lampooning Jersey-based reality shows, such as 'The Real Housewives of New Jersey' and 'Jersey Shore,' which seem to paint everybody from the state in a bad light. (Of course, most of the 'Jersey Shore' cast are from Staten Island but that's irrelevant to the title of that show.)
['Family Guy' - 'Welcome Back Carter' Season 9, Episode 3 Recap]
['American Dad' - 'Son of Stan, Part 2' Season 6, Episode 2 Recap]
Marriage and parenting are two of the most challenging and yet rewarding things we undertake in our lives, and yet we tackle both of them with zeal and enthusiasm.
This week, Seth MacFarlane used his three Fox animated comedies to explore these themes in greater depth so we can learn how to be better husbands, wives, mothers and fathers in our own lives.
For those who didn't hear, The Venture Bros. started either its fifth season or the second half of its fourth season on Sept. 12. Considering that the show hasn't been broadcast since December 2009, this is a significant thing.
In the event you've only just discovered the program, here's a quick run-down of some of the background and characters in this fun and sophisticated universe created by Jackson Publick.
The central four main characters are Dr. Rusty Venture, his sons Dean and Hank and their bodyguard Brock Samson (who was replaced in the most recent season by Sargeant Hatred, although Brock still features prevalently in the series).
'Futurama' usually finds the funny by delving into scientific and mathematical principles that could make a GED graduate's head explode.
Whenever a character references some in decipherable gobbledegook, my tired brain just imagines some overworked Ph.D laughing his head off that someone would take the time to work a "Coulomb's Law" reference into a major network comedy (and we wonder why they were canceled by Fox).
This week, the jokes were written for my people and me: the entertainment nerds. Sorry, Stephen Hawking, maybe they'll thrown in a saucy reference to Hoyle and Narlikar's theory of gravitation next week.
They are a level-up in smarts and braininess. Their frontal lobe contains deep, complex knowledge on scientific and mathematical concepts that could make even the smartest AP calculus student switch his major to English.
Their scripts and sets contains tons of hidden "in-jokes" that only a handful of mathematicians and physicists would find remotely interesting. Tonight's episode took an entire theory and wrapped it completely around the plot and the truly genius part of it was that even a dumba** like me could enjoy it.
Hamm, who's already dropped his uber-serious Don Draper persona to make hilarious guest appearances on '30 Rock' and as a 'Saturday Night Live' host, will drop in for a December episode called 'Donnie Fatso,' playing an FBI supervisor who works with Homer when papa Simpson goes undercover as a prison informant and worms his way into mobster Fat Tony's (Joe Mantegna) crew.
'Simpsons' executive producer Al Jean tells EW.com that Hamm's character will be completely un-Draper-y, with nary a 'Mad Men' reference in the episode.
"Didn't we used to be a delivery company?" - Hermes
"To the ship!" - Prof. Farnsworth
A friend of mine who was also a big fan of the original 'Futurama' before Fox kicked it out of bed quicker than one of Tiger Woods' mistresses didn't have any very nice things to say about the new premiere episodes. I'd reprint them here if the childhood literacy rate wasn't so, er, darn high.
In his defense, the first two didn't have the feel of the original series, even if they were able to stand on their own for the most part. Last night's hilarious adventure, however, could cause him to choke on those very words he used to describe the show's creators' digestive systems (don't ask).
"Neat." - Bender
The new 'Futurama' episodes have slowly started to return to their satirical roots and last night's epic half hour of awesomeness marked its official return to the station.
The show has been inching towards its topical nature. The second episode, a rather weak but occasionally funny crack at censorship and unnecessary outrage over TV indecency. Last week's not-so-subtle swipe at Apple had lots of funny moments, but didn't offer any real strong criticism against anything other than the zombie horde that are "iPhone users" (only with less moaning and drooling than actual zombies).
Last night's robotic take on the needless hysteria and blatant hypocricy of gay marriage was not only steeped in satiric goodness, but it was downright hilarious.
The real challenge of 'Futurama's' return is one of precarious balance.
In order to survive (again), the show has to find a way to please the hardcore fans that have kept it everyone's consciousness and bring in new fans who haven't kept up with it.
For the fans, that means sacrificing some of the facets that made the original so much fun and relying more on humor that can reach the broadest possible audience. The second episode of the new season, fortunately and unfortunately, featured a healthy mix of the two, healthy in a "gym class sex lesson" kind of way.
It's here! It's finally here! 'Futurama' is back baby! And Bender! And his banjo! And Fry! (I'll never get sick of that joke.)
All of my favorite characters are back in action, as if nothing ever happened to them. The first new episode of Matt Groening and David X. Cohen's genius creation. It's like being reunited with an old college friend and realizing that they are the same silly, dumb, hard partying freak you spent so much time trying to keep his drooping head from falling in the toilet.
So why, after all this time, does it feel so weird to watch?
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