Indulge me a little bit here, as this entry has virtually nothing to do with music.
However, like my mate Peter, this site, though primarily focused on music–specifically rock’n’roll–is also about art and culture.
Hence this entry, which involves my favorite TV show at present, Mr. Pickles, which appears on the Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim.
In contextualizing Mr. Pickles, it is important to note the brilliant concept Adult Swim has for a lot of their shows, not all of which are cartoons, but all of which represent some of the truly original and creative work anywhere.
A lot of the network’s (Adult Swim operates from 10 P.M. to 5 A.M. EST, daily, after which some very creative younger humans programming takes back over) brilliance comes from packaging. Shows generally run about 11 minutes, so, a Mr. Pickles that begins at say 9:30 P.M. will run for that time span, without commercials, and then be followed by three-to-four minutes of breaks, followed by another 15-minute program running under the same format.
Mr. Pickles, specifically, is about the Goodman family, their community (“Old Town”) and their “lovable” dog, Mr. Pickles. Mr. Pickles is beyond loyal to his owner, Tommy (who legs are inexplicably in braces) and the Goodman family, but Mr. Pickles also has a satanic streak, where he has some magic dominion over other animals, and can control them accordingly.
Mr. Pickles also has a serious sense of justice to go with that evil, if you will, streak. The thing is no one knows about Mr. Pickles’ dark side save the Goodman’s grandpa, who is always maintaining the dog is indeed evil, but is always disproved by the episode’s end, leaving the elder man with a wild tale that makes everyone know he is crazy.
I tend to describe the show as Leave it to Beaver, meets Scooby Doo, meets Dexter. The storylines get complex, but by the end of the 11 minutes, all the crazy loose ends are indeed tied up. But, in addition to the wild plots, there are all kinds of great things the creators have tossed in.
For example, Mr. Goodman is always reading the paper and the news of the story is often reflected in the headlines of his daily news, or within the sherrif’s office, the same can be said about the wanted posters.
Similarly, there is a lot happening in the background, with a lot of very off-the-wall stuff–particularly sex, as Mr. Pickles does indeed like to hump and grope almost anything, especially Mrs. Goodman–going on all over the place.
Mind you, this is a cartoon, but don’t let your kids watch, at least not without checking it out first, because this show is hysterical and as creative as it gets, but it could also be disturbing.
There are 10 episodes available (my favorite is The Lair) but what I linked to below is the Pilot as it gives a pretty good overview of the whole melange of craziness. But, if you go to the Adult Swim website, you can stream all of them (yay, they have been renewed for a second season!).