Sunday, June 8, 2008

Cartoon Review - Total Drama Island

So, after the premiere of "The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack" (which I previously reviewed), we got the United States premiere of "Total Drama Island". The reason why I said 'United States premiere' instead of just premiere is because this show is Canadian. And this series premiered in Canada a year ago on Teletoon. In fact, it's second season (titled "Total Drama Action") is going to premiere in Fall. Anyway, I was kinda surprised to see a show like this. First of all, it's...actually, let me talk about it in the review. Is that okay?
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Running Time: 22 minutes

Network: Teletoon (Canada); Cartoon Network (United States)

Rating: C+

Premiere: July 8, 2007 (Canada); June 5, 2008 (United States)



Well, it's best for me to start with that little stereotype about Canadian cartoons. You know, the one about all cartoons from Canada totally sucking? Well, that stereotype is wrong...half of the time, anyway. And for this show, that stereotype may just be half right. Well, this show doesn't exactly suck, but it isn't a masterpiece either. Maybe my hopes where too high? After all, this premiered right after I finished laughed at the decently good comedy that is "Flapjack". Maybe I was expecting a huge parody of the entire reality series genre? Yes, this show is an animated reality series...a concept that is pretty weird to me. On a side note, this is the first cartoon to ever do such a thing. So anyway, something I hate about Canadian cartoons is that the series premiere of them is almost always a two-parter. With that "new" episode of "Johnny Test" airing right after TDI, there was obviously no hope for Cartoon Network to show the entire hour-long premiere on Thursday. It started like any reality series (animated or not) should start out: The host explaining the location, the show, the rules, etc. And then we meet the contestants. All 22 of them...but wait, aren't there 26 episodes in this season? Will we ever get real character development and some episodes where no characters are eliminated? It's pretty possible. Basically, all "Not So Happy Campers" (the name of the pilot of course) did was introduce us to all the characters and give us brief glances at their personalities. And you can automatically tell...they are all stereotypes. But I'm pretty sure that that was the intention. And you can't really get some real character development until at least half of these guys are eliminated.

So, one thing that amazes me about this series is how it owes up to it's PG rating. Besides a few censored words like "crap" (which I think was uttered only once), Cartoon Network kept a lot of things in. In this first episode, Cartoon Network (thankfully) kept in a homosexual gag that was done halfway into the episode. Now, I always knew that Cartoon Network's BS&P was more accepting than those of other kids' channels, but I never thought they would accept this. I personally think they kept it in because they knew this joke would go over the heads of younger kids, and only teenagers and adults would catch it. However, I've been told that this joke is tame in comparison with other things later in the season, so let's see how Cartoon Network. Anyway, so in case you didn't know, the creators of this show also created "6teen". You know, that animated series that got bounced around a lot on Nickelodeon's schedule and eventually got taken off the air due to poor ratings (if you bounce any show around a lot, it's bound for bad ratings). Anyway, Cartoon Network seems to be thanking care of this show. It gets advertised quite a bit (not as much as "Ben 10: Alien Force", "Flapjack", and "Chowder", but still a lot), so Cartoon Network really wants it to do well. I can't say that much about the production and ideas behind the show since the closest I've found for that is the official blog and a lot of the information there has been taken down to avoid spoilers for American viewers (thus leaving me with only two pictures bad, low resoultion pictures found off the Internet to show you guys).

Anyway, I gave this show a C+ because, despite being a comedy, it didn't make me laugh at all. "Chowder" makes me laugh. "Flapjack" makes me laugh. But this show just doesn't make me laugh. Maybe it will in the future, but I won't really let you know that until I do a follow-up review a bit later...anyway, see you tomorrow when I get down to reviewing "Speed Racer". The new cartoon, not the live-action movie....

25 comments:

MasterK said...

Wow! Back to back Cartoon reviews, that's awesome! But a C+, I probably would not like this show, especially since it didn't make you laugh. I hate it when cartoons don't make me laugh, so I'm going to pass on this one, thanks for the warning. John K. would hate the art style, I'm certain of that. On a better note, I just saw the latest episode of Chowder, and have added the sleep eater to my favorite Chowder episode list.

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Racattack Force said...

I personally think I didn't like it is probably because I like weird psychical comedy. However, I've also been told this show gets more violent later on so...

Anonymous said...

There's a lot more to this show, believe me, i've seen all of them since I'm from Canada myself, and believe me, you will get development, there will be episodes where nobody gets voted off, and more importantly, you WILL get those laughs you wanted. lol, so all i gotta say is, just stay tuned and watch more of it. It gets MUCH better later on.

Anonymous said...

The 1st episode was ok but it was the pilot. Pilots are never good :P. The 2nd episode was hilarious. The fat kid got full on naked they had to blur out his crotch! After that I dubbed it my favorite show on CN.

Anonymous said...

A C+? this show deserves a A- or b+. Its kinda funny after u watch it alow.

Anonymous said...

First of all, this wasn't the first cartoon reality show, that was Drawn Together (comedy central)
and this show is 100 times better.
It is a bold idea that they give the characters development then vote them off. plus I love that they sterotyped all the characters so it feels like survivor that is awsome. I give this show an A.
PS: I don't care for Flapjack that much, but is still is ok.

Anonymous said...

Dude... or dudette... or WHATEVER!This show is totally awsome! I give it an A+++++++++++++! My fave character is Duncan because he has flirtaous funnines(sp) Ok Dokey.

(P.S. I am a girl amd I hate Courtney cuz' she likes Duncan but I like Duncan! XP!!!!!!!!!!!)

(P.S.S. I <3 <3 <3 <3 DUNCAN) ok i am done.

MasterK said...

hmmm, seems like many take exception, mabey I'd give it a chance. Have you ever considered looking for comedy in something other than a cartoon? You'd probably really like Fawlty Towers. Also, can I expect a Kung-Fu Panda review soon?

Brad said...

I must be in the minority here, but I actually thought TDI has some funny moments while Flapjack has failed to make me laugh even once. The fact that all the characters are stereotypes does suck, but it's refreshing to have something CN that's different yet still can give me a laugh. Plus I love pretty much any show with a good looking goth girl.

SMH said...

I give it an A. Not A+ but A. It's the best show on Cartoonnetwork right now. All the other shows pretty much suck... This is the only show that makes me laugh on Cartoonnetwork now...

Anonymous said...

... C+? That's it? I mean, the first few episodes didn't make me laugh at ALL, but, once the show got rolling I would laugh. A lot. Chowder and TDI are the best show's on CartoonNetwork right now. I like Skunk Fu too.

Racattack Force said...

You praobably didn't notice the date, but this review was done a bit after the US premiere of the show. I've since become a fan of the series.

Luna said...

A C+? I'd give it an A+!

Seriously, this is the ONLY show I will watch on Cartoon Network, it rocks!

Anonymous said...

I liked the show from what I've said, I liked the characters they put in and what they have to do. On a side note any Goth (boy or girl) that is well represented (like what they did with her) will win me over; since I am gothic/metalhead.

CHAWLEADER said...

Trust me this show should get a better rateing. I fell in love with the show. Chris, the show's host, is so mean and that make the show so cool. I would give the show an A+. It is one of the best shows ever. For me this is one of the few good shows on cartoon network. The good shows include Ben 10, Ben 10 alien force, 6teen, Total Drama Island (probably Total Drama Action also),and Foster's home for imaginary friends. I think flapjack and chowder use stupid humor ( that happens to be vary popular in many's eyes, but not mine) Watch the show for yourself, if you already didn't, and then see if you like it

Racattack Force said...

It's been a while since I've made this review, so I can definitely say that I've become a fan in the past few months. It definitely got better as time went on. If I ever feel like doing a follow-up review, then I would give it around an A-.

Anonymous said...

TDI is amazing, you should watch all the episodes, it gets really funny after the first few episodes!

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Anonymous said...

I can understand why you don't like it, although it seems like it can be neutral ground. Personally, I'm in love with the show and have been since the august of the year it premired. It's like it's for people who want to grow up, but exactly deny they're kids inside. The thing at first i thought it was 'cool' in a stereotypical way (and actually the characters are supposed to be the exact sterotypes), and getting used to it for a while, while watching amny of the other shows that Fresh TV created helped me mature a little, like my odd sense of humor is ok. I think i enjoy it so much, was because smething sparked with me, and led me to some friends who have, and are teaching me thathonestly you should be weird and enjoy it before you grow up.
And also, it's that there are some episodes where characters come back. I also love the comment from the anonymous person, who said it's bold to give them development then ship 'em off. It's like, you know them, but feel you kinda want more. (I also love flapjack.)

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