By Jeremy Azevedo
|Adult Swim’s new box set (aptly titled “Adult Swim in a Box”) is a curious collection of seemingly random selections from their catalogue. Included are Aqua Teen Huger Force Volume 2, Space Ghost Coast to Coast Volume 3, Moral Orel Season 1, Robot Chicken Season 2, Metapocalypse Season 1 and Sealab 2021: Season 2.|
I’m guessing that the selection is meant to showcase the best that Adult Swim has to offer and serve as a gateway for new fans. As such, it makes a great gift for people that haven’t already been collecting Adult Swim DVDs for years, but most hardcore fans are already going to own at least one or two of these.
In order to offers some incentive for longtime fans to purchase Adult Swim in a Box, it also comes with a disc of previously unavailable pilots, including The Best of Totally for Teens, Cheyenne Cinnamon and the Fantabulous Unicorn of Sugar Town Candy Fudge, Korgoth of Barbaria, Perfect Hair Forever and Welcome to Eltingville. Each one of these shows is a riot; it’s almost upsetting to watch, knowing that they didn’t go on to become fully produced series. Korgoth and Eltingville in particular are so polished that it’s hard to guess what could have possibly prohibited them from taking off, aside from budget constraints. I myself would’ve gladly tuned in for weeks on end of ultra-violence and nerd bashing (two of my favorite flavors!). Either way, it’s fun to have a glimpse at what could have been.
Official Synopses for the pilot episodes included in the Adult Swim in a Box DVD-set are as follows:
|Cheyenne Cinnamon and the Fantabulous Unicorn of Sugar Town Candy Fudge – On the outskirts of Taffy Valley lies a magical land called Sugar Town Candy Fudge, where pop-star princess Cheyenne Cinnamon lives in her fruitcake palace and leads a life dedicated to solving the world’s problems through the healing power of song. Taffy Valley is located right next to Detroit, Michigan, where unemployment remains at record levels. Cheyenne Cinnamon is created by Dave Willis, co-creator of Aqua Teen Hunger Force and Squidbillies.|
The Best of Totally for Teens - A live-action spoof of a show for teenagers, made and hosted by out-of-touch thirty-somethings, The Best of Totally for Teens picks up on the familiar custom of condescending kids’ shows hosted by adults. In the tradition of Kids Are People, Too, our hosts use "teen lingo" and are dressed in "teen styles."
Korgoth of Barbaria – Barbarian on a quest who lives and dies by the sword. created by Aaron Springer, storyboard writer and director for Dexter’s Laboratory, The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy and SpongeBob SquarePants.
|Perfect Hair Forever – It’s Pokemon® meets Dragonball Z® when a young, bald boy goes on adventures in a mystical land. He encounters talking hot dogs and giant cat men, all while seeking the ultimate power – perfect hair.|
|Welcome to Eltingville - Based on Evan Dorkin’s comic strip, Dork, the series was based around the Eltingville Club, a science fiction, horror, comic-book and fantasy gaming club consisting of four teenagers who are archetypal nerds.|
Many of you are probably wondering why the classic selections included in this set aren’t all “Season 1”. I don’t really have an answer to that. Again, I think that the seasons that they chose are the strongest from each respective show, especially Sealab 2021: Season 2 and Space Coast to Coast Volume 3. Both of these shows had really hit their stride by this point, and there really isn’t any reason to watch these in chronological order. So why not put the best foot forward? Another explanation might be that they had a bunch of copies sitting around and needed to move them somehow. (It does, in fact, say “Cash Grab” on the side of the box, which may only be partly ironic.) This would also explain the inclusion of Moral Orel, which is only just an “okay” show. The set would have benefited much more from the inclusion of Venture Bros, The Brak Show, Home Movies or Harvey Birdman. Any of these would’ve been better examples of the Adult Swim legacy.
If you’re a big Adult Swim fan, this set is worth picking up even if you already have one or two of the seasons. It’s a helluva lot cheaper than buying the shows individually, and the bonus pilot disc is a great incentive. Newcomers should also consider picking up a copy of Adult Swim in a Box for the excellent Space Ghost, Metapocalypse, Aqua Teen, Robot Chicken and Sealab. If that doesn’t make an Adult Swim convert out of you, then dust the sand out of your vag, take a bong rip and watch it all again. If I remember college correctly, (I surely don’t), that’s how this stuff is meant to be viewed anyway.