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Monday, May 10, 2010

Boondocks, Season 3, ep 2... phail

The jokes on this season are showing their age.
Rappers going broke started LAST YEAR, and the Soulja Boi/Ice T thing was just a bit fresher then than now.

Sure, last week's show was marginally funny, what with the light it drew to both sides of Obamamania, showing just how little sense either side makes, but it too arrived 12 months late.
It is OBVIOUS that these were written a year or more ago, the pop culture references are so old that they've gone stale. With this much of a pushback, these should have been cutting room floor relics, bonus material on a DVD somewhere. Locked away in a vault somewhere and only rumored about, not on television making for way-too-late jokes.

Really, I am expecting someone to yell "SIIIIIIIKE!!!" after fooling someone, or something like that. Hell, I may even see a bootleg Bart Simpson T-Shirt.
[Phlip note - 2 links, that]

Anyone who knows me knows how much I Stan for The Boondocks, what with every daily comic strip on my computer, and all the books, even up until he transitioned to work on the show, and how excited I was when he got the show.
This shit here, though?
Kinda like seeing Cheese Eyes with ice on both knees in the end-game. Like seeing Muhammad Ali getting his jaw broke fighting too long. Not too unlike the lack of quality coming from Wu Tang Clan in the last 10+ as a collective...

I would LOVE to be able to simply say "I can't watch this," and turn away, but there is the chance that something funny would happen or maybe, just maybe, they might try to pull off something not requiring a pop culture reference, but the sad thing is in the detail that pop culture is what they do.
I know how much cartoons hate to be compared to one another, but one can think here about 3 other cartoons that live to savage pop culture...

1... The Simpsons
Simple, they deal with things that aren't necessarily RIGHT NOW, and Groening at least has the freedom to come up with a "special episode" within a couple weeks of the proposed air date. This allows their jokes to be current, or at least to be told within the year of their relevance.

2... South Park
Trey Parker and Matt Stone are nihilist self-torturing assholes to whom nothing is sacred. They are also bullies who are known for turning in episodes on Monday evening with a Wednesday release date. They are NEVER late to get in someone's shit for that detail alone.

3... Family Guy
Simple, don't worry about what is current, your go-to gag is the flashback anyway. It is funnier to tie some shit that happened months or years ago to what you're doing right now with a ham-fisted and completely unrelated flashback-cum-sight gag. The joke is that their references have no contextual relevance anyway.
And it works damn near EVERY time.


I am not saying that The Boondocks hasn't been funny, not in the least.
What I AM saying is that what is basically only passingly funny now would be motherfucking HILARIOUS if it was done just last year.
The homie Galen suggested last night that the stale jokes would be the result of the 2007-2008 Writers Strike, to which I reminded him that the strike ENDED in February of 2008. The strike might still be effecting movies, but there is no way in hell that television is still damned 2 years later. That being said, the strike might have been a better excuse this time last year, but the fact remains that the subjects presented were "hot" in mid-2009, not so much in mid-2010.

This really is heartbreaking to me.
I been following The Boondocks since they were in the back of The Source on the page before Star & Bucwild's Reality Check, back in the late 90's (in fact I still have those issues), and kinda off of it by default until they started popping up online (to me, at least) when I got onto the internets more seriously in about 2000ish, up until the chatter about a show in 2004, I have all the books and all that.
The problem with the transition from print media to television is that you go from a daily, weekly or monthly deadline for your material to a quarterly or yearly one, depending on how often your seasons come out or how many episodes you get... Unless you're Trey Parker and Matt Stone, at which point you turn in your episodes sometimes the day before or the morning of release. Or unless you're Seth McFarlane and you can bully Fox into giving you 75% or more of their Sunday Animation Block, giving you more than enough time to do it.

Unlike some, though, I am not the one to sit here and make excuses for something that I HAVE shown such support for, vocally and financially. I just can't.
That being said, we would all have had more lofty hopes for the final season of The Boondocks, and it looks like we're just not gonna get that.
Damn
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