Following up closely on my cartoon double is Nascar Racers.
Although I'm a little surprised this didn't go up earlier. Nascar Racers is your typical good team vs evil team type of sports cartoon, it was released in the closing stages of the 90s, early 00s era and was a deal with Fox as a side part for the actual Nascar racing series.
The story explains that a new racing series known as Nascar Unlimited has been introduced and Team Fastex led by Mark "Charger" McCutchen must defeat the evil team known as Rexcor on a series of Hot Wheels style tracks in a futuristic world.
This comes across at time of release as "seen it all before" and is not very subtle about it, the obvious choices on character design, the trademark "evil" team, it follows all the typical tropes, and despite the trademark being with the official Nascar Racing series, none of the current drivers at that time even endorsed it, so that's why it's not that well remembered.
In my opinion it's okay but didn't leave that much of an impression on me despite the fact that I am huge motor racing fan but at time of release I was losing interest in TV and I felt as though even then I was retracing old steps.
It's worth a look but I wouldn't go nuts over it.
More from cartoon land as next we dive into Wacky Races.
In the cartoon world, a group of racers of varied professions take part in an automobile race to decide the wackiest racer, everything from Inventors, Cavemen, Pilots, Monsters, Hillbillies, Lumberjacks, Mobsters, Armymen to actual racing drivers and whatever Dick Dastardly was doing before he took up racing. A typical race would feature lots of power ups and Dick Dastardly cheating to win and always failing.
The show is well liked and well remembered but looking back at this late 60s show, it hasn't really aged much but it's easy to point out the realization that Dick Dastardly could've won a lot of races by not cheating mainly because
1. He clearly has the fastest car in the races when you compare what he's up against.
2. He always seems to lead a race at some point in the show.
3. The other racers rarely take him on other than through dumb luck.
Dick puts his cheating down to laws of villainy, but he has the Wile E Coyote law of not being allowed to win no matter what, which is why when he did win, he gets cheated by the race people to make sure he's disqualified.
Overall you can't go wrong with Wacky Races, it's one of the few attempts at a racing cartoon that succeeds where others fail, the next review will explain why.
Let it be said that I'm a lot more optimistic about the future of Western Cartoons knowing that some good shows are still being made despite Gravity Falls ending and a certain selection of utter rubbish is still airing. So today from the good camp is Penn Zero.
Penn is an ordinary child until he discovers that his parents are trapped in another dimension, his parents are Part Time Heroes, saving dimensions who struggle to handle issues on their own, this discovery puts Penn Zero on his path to becoming a Part Time Hero and saving Dimensions with his two friends against part time villains being two of his teachers.
This show has a great understanding of it's pop culture references and the art style lends itself beautifully to all the episodes set in the alternative worlds which are very creative and very clever; some places worthy or noting, Disney Style Fantasy land where Penn is the Princess singing in musical format, the Wacky Races style Clown racing world, the Top Gun themed Dragon Flying Academy, (Surprised My Little Pony didn't think of it first) War movie played out by action figures and James Bond Espionage as Cavemen. That's just a taster of what to expect from this cartoon and it's been renewed for another season so well done Penn Zero.
More shows like this please.
To keep up with everything I've ever reviewed since the beginning I've produced a quick guide saying which Anime and Cartoons I've reviewed, a one line synopsis and a one line verdict for each one. It'll be updated in the near future.
Read the full post »
This is an old post rehashed into a review using some old script and some new this is my review on Dragon Half
Mink is a Dragon Half born to a Red Dragon Mother and a Knight Father known famous for being Rouce the Red Lightning. The King wanting to take Mink's mother as his own ends up taking Mink instead only to start a number of humorous events in which the King tries to capture Mink, sending hammy knights, his own sorceress daughter, his sorcerer aide, the Warlock's Son and even Mink's Idol Dick Saucer. Meanwhile Mink and friends' mission is to obtain tickets to the DIck Saucer concert using any means necessary including fighting in a martial arts tournament.
And that's the end of the OVA, at the time this was the most popular comedy in the West and was demanded several times before it all died out in the 2000s, well there are a number of reasons for this.
The official reason according to various sources was that Dragon Half bombed quite badly in it's native Japan. A four episode OVA was originally planned but never saw production beyond the two episodes we did get, which was from the first few chapters of the manga, the story expands to include a major demon Big Bad needing to be slayed with nods to popular RPG games and Nintendo classics as it's stated that some characters are offspring of Mario & Peach and Link & Zelda.
Looking back, Dragon Half is still utterly hilarious, from the Beethoven style ending theme to the overly comedic chibi style art, there's plenty to offer in this OVA and worth watching dozens of times, the dub is also hilarious with special mention to Brett Weaver's performance as Damaramu.
Final Verdict: Well remembered as the peak of classic anime comedy, Dragon Half is well missed by it's older Otaku and serves as a reminder of what could've been if it had been made a full series, but I guess it wasn't meant to be.