Adult Swim Fall 2014 Lineup: Mr. Pickles and Squidbillies

5 Sep

Since we pretty much covered a bunch of FOX’s September offerings, I felt like it would be appropriate to talk a little about what Adult Swim is offering for their fall lineup.

Firstly, we have Mr. Pickles.Mr Pickles

Mr. Pickles is a fantastic-looking show about a secretly Satanic and depraved border collie. If it sounds ridiculous, that’s because it is, and that’s exactly how I like my cartoons. Nuts, insane, just extremely over the top.

Mr. Pickles premieres on Sunday, September 21st at 12 midnight, on Adult Swim.

The art is incredible, and the humor– well, let’s just say I’m just really excited to see where this show goes and if its weird, sick humor catches on or not (I hope it does)!

Lastly, what is it about Squidbillies that makes it so amazing?!?

I can’t say for sure.

What I do know is that the squids are run by the same mastermind behind my beloved Aqua Teen, and the crude, dirty animation is just so special in my heart.

I’ve watched the show since its humble beginnings, and although this next new season that starts September 21 should be season 9, they’re calling it season 8 still (for some reason), and I suppose we’ll just let ’em. I love this stupid family of endangered mud squids that mirror Honey Boo Boo’s family way too much to care.

Squidbillies season 8 on adult swim!

All of that said, we’re fully prepared for even more Adult Swim premiere awesomeness in September — as always, more news to come!

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Every Simpsons Ever on FXX August 21, Netflix-Exclusive Series Bojack Horseman August 22

21 Aug

Simpsons marathon - every Simpsons ever!

The massive The Simpsons ‘Every Episode Ever’ marathon has begun — today (Aug 21) — on FXX, and Bojack Horseman will be available tomorrow (Aug 22) on Netflix! Hope everyone has their DVRs all set up.

Let’s talk about Bojack Horseman for a minute.

It’s an interesting concept.

You take a mega-star like Will Arnett, and then make him the voice of a talking horse-man who is a washed-up former actor.

This is the kind of thing that’s made for people like us. Weird, dirty, and seemingly hilarious, this made-for-Netflix animated series looks like a win on all fronts.

There is a cool gallery of Will Arnett and Aaron Paul on set doing the voiceover work for Bojack here, and two trailers have also been released for the show’s premiere.

This isn’t the first time Netflix has offered original animated content, although it is one of the first original fully made-for-Netflix shows out there. Another example of Netflix animated TV content is the former Cartoon Network show Problem Solverz — all the previously unaired season 2 episodes (that I only just found out exist!) are also now available exclusively on Netflix!

(Now if they’d only give us more Secret Mountain Fort Awesome!!)

We’re all really looking forward to the Netflix exclusive premiere of Bojack Horseman tomorrow, and we’re also psyched for the ‘Every Simpsons Ever’ marathon event that has already begun, today, on FXX!

Bojack Horseman - August 22 on Netflix!

Comedy Central Fall 2014 Lineup: Brickleberry Season 3, South Park Season 18

14 Aug

BRICKLES3On Tuesday, September 16th at 10:30pm, the original animated series known as Brickleberry will return to Comedy Central.

I’ve found that this show is either loved or hated. There is little in-between. I’ve had die-hard fans of cartoons tell me how awful they think it is, and that I should stop covering it.

But the fact is, I just love Brickleberry too damn much. I wish more haters of it out there would give it a chance.

Centering on a group of bumbling park rangers and also featuring a talking bear cub voiced by Daniel Tosh, I personally find the show to be full of insane, ridiculous and downright hilarious jokes. It pokes fun at dumb rednecks and loose women and general dimwits and everything else that fans of Family Guy or The Simpsons or any other animated show poke fun at.

So, give Brickleberry another try in its third season if you get a chance. Apparently, its ratings are good enough to keep it around, and luckily for fans like me, it shows no sign of slowing down!

**Embedded in this post is the one teaser image we’ve gotten so far from Brickleberry season 3 (the Denzel/Steve bondage one), and below is a picture of Eric the Actor (from Howard Stern) — he has recorded some voice work for an episode this season.**

The week after Brickleberry‘s season 3 premiere, South Park returns to Comedy Central on Wednesday, September 24th at 10pm. This will be South Park‘s 18th season!

The other most recent news for South Park is of course their recent inking of a deal to be exclusively streamed by Hulu, and no longer at SouthParkStudios.com. Pretty crazy.

Not much is known episode-wise for seasons of either Brickleberry OR South Park, and it’s actually amazing I found anything to write about in this article at all (Ha!)

However, as for South Park, you can be assured they will be back with their sharp, witty satire on all of the world’s stupid insanity, all produced in their now-famous week production time! Good stuff.

Don’t miss these two season premieres — 9/16 and 9/24, on Comedy Central!

Eric the Actor

Eric the Actor.

Goodbye, ‘The Looney Tunes Show’… Hello, ‘Wabbit’!

13 Aug

Wabbit-A Looney Tunes Production

Unfortunately, I just recently read the confirmation of The Looney Tunes Show‘s cancellation after only two seasons. It was a great show — hilarious, and a fresh take on the Looney Tunes characters as they all lived in the same neighborhood in modern times. The songs were hit and miss, but many of the show’s main segments were amazingly funny, with Daffy being even more of a self-centered narcissist (is that possible?!?) and rooming with the usually calm, responsible, and centered Bugs — both of them living near the homes of Sam, Granny, Porky, etc.

However, the good news is that a new show centering around Bugs, called Wabbit is in production and should air in 2015! This fantastic news was confirmed at the 2014 Cartoon Network upfronts.

I think Wabbit is an excellent move for Cartoon Network. While I love Daffy and occasionally some other Looney Tunes characters (VERY occasionally), Bugs is and always has been the best and funniest part of any Looney Tunes segment. I’ve always disliked Sylvester and Tweety, for example, and I always hope against hope when I see that infamous Merrie Melodies logo that a Bugs Bunny cartoon is going to follow it!

So I’m pretty psyched for Wabbit. Shown above, in this post here, is the logo for the show that Cartoon Network has provided. We will provide more information on it as it comes down the pike.

Good stuff!

Interview with Jason Barnes (animator on Squids, ATHF, Archer)!

4 Aug

For this post, we have something special for you — another exclusive interview, this time with Jason Barnes, who has worked on Aqua Teen, Squidbillies, and currently works for Archer!

Animated TV Blog: Hi, Jason. When did you start out in the TV/animation industry? Who did you first work for?

Jason Barnes: I started working in television in 2008. I was still attending art school at the Art Institute of Atlanta at the time when I got an internship at Radical Axis to work on Squidbillies (season 3 or 4?) and ATHF. The internship was unpaid, but the experience was payment enough. They basically taught me how to use Adobe Flash haha. It was fantastic and stressful all at the same time. I mean, I was just a kid. All these animators had at least 5-6 years of professional work under their belts. But they let me do everything from key animation to design work for squids. It was a dream come true since Squidbillies was a HUGE inspiration for me in college. Aside from the work experience, I made some GREAT contacts that have kept me working ever since. In fact, after my 3 month internship I went back to school to finish up my last 2 quarters at AiA, then almost immediately after graduation started working on Squidbillies again.

ATB: Had you known a long time you wanted to be in the TV/animation industry? Who or what are some of your biggest inspirations?

JB: Honestly, growing up I didn’t know you could be in TV/animation without being famous. In high school, I thought you needed to be the BEST in order to work in entertainment (not really true, but it helps to strive for the best, obviously). I had just built it up in my head that if you weren’t John K from birth, you were nobody and you’d never work anywhere. Haha. But the way I “found out” I could be in animation was talking to my mom one day (I had recently graduated high school) She straight up just told me “go to art school. You suck at business and can’t be a doctor, but you LOVE to draw. So. Do it.” And literally within a week I was applying to art school. haha.

…Which I guess leads to the next question… John K’s Ren & Stimpy molded my little child brain growing up. It was the craziest thing I had ever seen on television. I would draw the characters constantly. That show remained a huge influence on me throughout college as well. Then I discovered Adult Swim and that became my bible. Haha. ATHF and Squidbillies actually still inspire me to this day. But now, there’s a TON of things I see online and on television that inspire me. A Rick and Morty screener is currently sitting on my desk waiting to be rewatched. Comedy Central’s TripTank is my new jam. It’s a great format for animation. Pretty much a different style every 2-3 minutes haha, so I never get bored. Plus it’s all submission based content so indie animators can get stuff on air without too much producer interference. A lot of live-action stuff inspires me too. Trailer Park Boys, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, True Detective, and Fargo are very inspiring to watch, even though I’m no filmmaker. They’ll get me jazzed about certain color choices or shot layouts, hell even character design. Pretty sure Walter White or Ricky from Trailer Park Boys has made it into at least ONE character line-up I’ve done for a studio.

ATB: Not much is known to the public about Radical Axis (animation company), even though they animated two of our (and many other folks’) favorite cartoons, Aqua Teen and Squidbillies. What was it like working for them? Were there good perks to the job?

JB: Radical was great. They gave me the contacts and experience I needed to get comfortable with the industry. They were small and pretty laid back compared to the larger studios out West, and it was the perfect environment for young, budding artists to learn to perform pretty much any task in the animation pipeline. For most of my time there, the crew was only about 12-15 people; usually 4-5 animators, 2-4 compositors, an editor, and a few producers. At one point, there were a little over 100 people working there when Archer (Floyd County Productions) was just starting production on season 1 and needed studio space (So they merged with Radical for a season). It was kinda nuts, Suddenly we were filled to the brim with brilliant artists working on a show that we had NO idea was going to be so successful, let alone EMMY-NOMINATED one day. Haha. As far as job perks go, I got to work with my best friends all day. Pretty perky if you ask me. But yeah, we’d get lots of Adult Swim swag all the time, anything from Early Cuyler trucker hats with “Breathe If You’re Horny” on ’em to Meatwad beanbag chairs. We’d also get movie screening passes occasionally, and once we even got free passes to Dragon Con which was AWESOME. But I digress. Radical eventually dissolved, and people scattered around the country. Awesome Incorporated took over Squids and ATHF almost immediately. Luckily, some animators transferred over to help out.

ATB: You work for Archer today — how does working there differ from working at Radical Axis? For example, what were/are the production times/deadlines for different shows, ATHF, Squidbillies, Archer etc — how does that work?

JB: Well, Archer is kinda insane compared to Squidbillies. You’re talking a 6 artist crew for Squids and an 80+ artist crew for Archer. The switch was overwhelming. The biggest difference between the two is expectation. Archer requires a level of artistry unparalleled in the industry, while Squids is a beautifully loose and dirty show. I wish there was a happy medium between the two, but I’ve yet to find it. Another thing that separates the two shows is obviously budget; Archer can afford to draw out an episode’s production to as long as a couple months, while Squids is pretty much done in 4-5 weeks, for as cheap as possible.

ATB: I see on your IMDb entry (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3439363) that you even worked on an episode of Unsupervised! – another great show – and Out There, which I haven’t even had a chance to see yet. I also know you have a pretty excellent tumblr (thebarnes.tumblr.com) with some great images of your art — do you have a demo reel of your animation available online anywhere?

JB: Haha- IMDB is a little outdated, currently it’s only about 50% of the work I’ve done. I actually worked on all 13 of Unsupervised (RIP) and about half of Out There. Both shows were so much fun to work on. An absolute shame they didn’t make it to second seasons. Unsupervised was expected to not make it; just clashed too hard with FX’s line-up. But Out There was a perfect show; funny, smart, and visually engaging there’s no reason it shouldn’t have been renewed. It was the perfect animated flagship for IFC. The way she goes, I guess…

As far as a CURRENT demo reel… I do not have one. BUT you can find my old college stuff and some shitty internship work from Radical Axis over at TheBarnesVault.com haha. My tumblr is the best way to follow my current work.

ATB: Wow, I agree on Unsupervised being extremely underrated. Do you watch cartoons now, or maybe you have for years..? This may be similar to your answer in the second question above, but what are some of your favorite cartoons?

JB: I’m constantly watching new cartoons, mainly animator’s personal projects on youtube or vimeo. See above. Haha.

ATB: Any advice for aspiring animators?

JB: First off, get comfortable and connected with your creativity. Sit with a stack of post-it notes and just draw if you’re not comfortable with your own style yet. I find the post-it note format keeps things fast, simple, and small; there’s little room for details and overwhelming pressure (especially if you doodle with a Sharpie, that’s my fav). Another thing that’s helped me get comfortable and connected with my creativity over the years is “There are no rules, just tools.” At least when it comes to my own work, I constantly remind myself that there is no one watching over my shoulder telling me how things should look. It calms me down (I’m kind of an anxious person in that respect haha). If there’s one thing I’ve learned about art, it’s that you’ve gotta stay loose and relaxed. Otherwise you tighten up and your work gets strangled and stiff. Feel the flow, as they say. You also gotta FEED the flow, too! Get a tumblr account and start following artists, and then follow the artists that those artists follow/reblog. That’s the quickest way to get connected with other artists and stay fresh on current trends and techniques. Not to mention it’s an endless feed of inspiration. Some truly brilliant artists floating out there in the blogosphere that you won’t find in any production art book or art history book unfortunately.

ATB: We want to thank Jason for doing this interview, and for imparting such great advice to our readers! Thanks again, Jason!

 

Updates, Fall Premieres, The Simpsons/Family Guy Crossover “The Simpsons Guy”, Brickleberry, South Park, American Dad! and the Simpsons/Futurama Crossover

23 Jul

The Simpsons Family Guy 1 Hour Crossover Special Event "The Simpsons Guy" Coming Sunday September 28 to FOX

UPDATED!

DATES TO REMEMBER, 2014:

Friday, Aug 22
-Series premiere of Bojack Horseman on Netflix. The entire series will be immediately available for your binge-watching pleasure.

Sunday, Sept 14
-Premiere of micro-season of American Dad! on FOX. A one hour block of two new unaired episodes (“Roger Passes the Bar” and “From Russia With Love”) back to back at 9:30pm.

Tuesday, Sept 16
-Premiere of Brickleberry season 3 at 10:30pm on Comedy Central.

Sunday, Sept 21
-Final episode of American Dad! on FOX (“Blagsnarst: A Love Story”) at 9:30pm, before the show moves to TBS in October (see below for date).
Mr. Pickles series premiere at 12:00 midnight on Adult Swim.
Squidbillies season 8 (but really 9?) premiere at 12:15am on Adult Swim. (Why is it not season 9?)

Wednesday, Sept 24
-Premiere of South Park season 18 at 10pm on Comedy Central.

Sunday, Sept 28
-Premiere of The Simpsons season 26 on FOX (“Clown in the Dumps”, 8/7c)
-Premiere of Family Guy season 13 – the one hour Family Guy/Simpsons crossover event, (“The Simpsons Guy”, 9/8c)

Thursday, Oct 30
-Premiere of American Dad! on TBS (despite reports it will air on Mondays)

Sunday, Nov 9
The Simpsons/Futurama crossover “Simpsorama” slated to air on FOX

TBA..?
SpongeBob season 9 began in 2012, and there is still one unaired episode (in the USA), “Yeti Krabs”.

2015-2016 DATES (TENTATIVE/TBA):

Friday, Feb 6
-‘The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water’ (the second SpongeBob movie, in 3D, in theaters)

Bordertown series premiere on FOX (spring 2015)

Regular Show renewed for season 6 on Cartoon Network (2015)

The Amazing World of Gumball renewed for season 4 (2015) and season 5 on Cartoon Network

Sanjay and Craig renewed for season 3 (2015) on Nickelodeon

Aqua Teen Hunger Force (or whatever it will be titled this next season) season 11 on Adult Swim (2015)

SpongeBob season 10 is confirmed for Nickelodeon (2015?)

There you have it – more soon!

Homer Simpson and Peter Griffin from upcoming Simpsons/Family Guy crossover episode "The Simpsons Guy" in September on FOX

On American Dad! Moving To TBS — A Belated Father’s Day Post

18 Jun

American Dad! Stan Smith and KlausIt’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of American Dad!, and I have been ever since this great show began airing in 2005. I’ve had the pleasure of watching the show evolve from its humble origins, and have witnessed both the jokes and the animation improve over the years.

If I remember correctly, I saw the series premiere of American Dad! (entitled “Pilot”) when it originally aired on FOX, directly following Super Bowl XXXIX on February 6th, 2005. It only took viewing a few episodes for me to realize that I much preferred American Dad! to Family Guy.

Why?

For one thing, American Dad! has no cut-aways. Also, the show’s stellar writing contains much more weird, yet somehow more thoughtfully organized humor. It’s much more subtle, and not so heavy-handed. Finally, the characters — especially those of Steve and Roger — are all-time favorites of mine in the cartoon world. They’re just so bizarre and hilarious.

On July 16th, 2013, it was announced that American Dad! had quietly been cancelled by Fox, leaving the show’s tenth season as its final run on the network. Shortly thereafter, however, cable station TBS picked it up for two seasons – 15 episodes (previously announced as 11th season, but will serve as a continuation of the 10th season), which are slated to begin airing October 30th on Monday nights. The true purpose of this cancellation/relocation was to make room for new animated broadcasts on Animation Domination, such as another animated series from Seth MacFarlane called Bordertown.

Regarding the network move, Mike Barker stated “It’s going to be the same American Dad! just in a different place”. At Comic Con 2013, Mike Barker revealed that an American Dad! movie (possibly centering on Roger and set on his birth planet) may take place in the future. It was further hinted that an American Dad! movie may already even be partially written.

Unfortunately, Barker left the series over creative differences (and production not running smoothly) when early production for season 11 began — in November 2013.

Hopefully, the loss of Mike Barker won’t change the show much or cause it to suffer. From here on out, Matt Weitzman will serve as the show’s sole showrunner.

It is unknown if any movie plans will be cancelled following Barker’s exit from the series.

Will American Dad! be able to be even raunchier on TBS? Maybe. We hope so! These shows are ALWAYS exponentially funnier with the less censorship they recieve.

A total of three more American Dad! episodes will be shown on FOX on Sundays at 9:30pm. Two will air September 14th (“Roger Passes the Bar” and “From Russia With Love”). The final FOX episode is titled “Blagsnarst: A Love Story”, will feature Kim Kardashian as another alien (love interest of Roger), and will air September 21st.

Matt Weitzman said at San Diego Comic Con 2014 that the show will have a cold opening on TBS, unlike the newspaper/Roger disguise gags of the past openings.

The remaining known American Dad! episodes that have been written and/or produced and have been given production codes and titles, (presumably TBS episodes) are as follows:

9AJN01 “Blondes Versus Brunettes”
9AJN02 “CIAPow”
9AJN03 “A Tiny Affair”
9AJN04 “Brobot”
9AJN05 “Scents and Sensei-bility”
9AJN06 “Now and Gwen” (likely the episode featuring Uma Thurman as Gwen, Francine’s sister)
9AJN13 “Holy Shit, Jeff’s Back!”
9AJN?? “LGBSteve”
9AJN?? “American Fung”
9AJN?? “Seizures Suit Stanny”
9AJN?? “The Shrink”
9AJN?? “Dreaming of a White Porsche Christmas”
9AJN?? “Morning Mimosa”
9AJN?? “A Star Is Reborn”
9AJN?? “Manhattan Magical Murder Mystery Tour”