At the center of the Spielberg/Warner Brothers anthology series stands Animaniacs. With top quality animation, memorable music and an all-star cast even the Looney Tunes envied their popularity. It was another perfect storm of the best people coming together to add to the 90’s animation resurgence. Now a reboot is making its home on Hulu 2020 and there’s alot of speculation about it like, does this really need to happen? Wakko’s Wish was a great send-off even if it wasn’t a theatrical swan song. At the very least, it won’t be a live-action remake. What else is there to speculate about this? Can you imagine the brain with a hyper-realisitc cranium? Hopefully Disney didn’t hear that. These are the Top 5 questions for the Animaniacs reboot.
5. Where is Tom Ruegger?
Creator Tom Ruegger (Left) New Show Runner Wellesley Wild (Right)
Spielberg’s fingerprints are never invisible when producing animation, but creator, Tom Ruegger seems to have gone incognito. Who do we have in his place? One of the people who worked with Seth Macfarlane on Family Guy. Not that he can’t bring something different to the table, but it’s a little off-putting when your resume only consists of a show that’s been declining as much as The Simpsons. That or a movie version with a teddy bear. For all we know, he could be a clone of Seth. Anything that’s less than what the original crew cooked up could affect the entire project by one person. Ask Geostorm director, Dean Devlin. He’s been Roland Emmerich’s right hand for years and look how far he branched out. Who’s to say history won’t repeat itself here.
4. Will the cast be replaced?
Yakko’s Rob Paulsen (Left) Wakko’s Jess Harnell (Right) and Dot’s Tress Macneille
The mindset behind cartoon remakes is anyone’s replaceable if they get out of line. At least it would be had the internet not open Pandora’s box on behind-the-scenes drama. Nowadays when an entire cast and/or creator is disowned, fandoms turn into athletic zombies and flood social media for better or worse. If it weren’t for the new Ducktales cartoon, 2016’s Powerpuff Girls would constantly berate the memory on how NOT to treat entertainment veterans. Sometimes a new spin is welcome, but if you go behind someone’s back and stab them with , it won’t be good publicity. Not everyone is as good as Michael J. Fox’s voice double.
3. How toned down will it be?
Would this even fly today?
The definition of family entertainment has changed drastically since the 80’s ad 90’s. G and PG from long ago are far cry from what society deemed appropriate, even if adults are part of the demographic. If you’ve watched the show, there’s more than one time when the imaginations cattle prod the bar to see what they could get away with (See above). as a more contrastable example, putting all of Kung Fu Panda next to the heart-extraction scene from Temple of Doom is sure to turn more than a few heads if kids are exposed to it. And with “controversy” popping up every day in the news, will this be the subject of unwanted bad press? Anything involving Hello Nurse these days is a lawsuit waiting to happen.
2. Who will fill in for the late Richard Stone?
The Late Richard Stone
When audiences want the same crew to bring back that nostalgic spark, they forget that reality givith and taketh, no matter how long the reunion takes. And in between the original series ending and the announcement was the day the music died. The late Richard Stone is often compared to the legendary Carl Stalling in the same way Howard Ashman was to Walt Disney. His music to even the slightest movement and became the true spiritual successor to Termite Terrace’s experimental music man from score to theme songs that took more than his fair share of Emmys. It was only fitting that his final role would include the Hungarian Rhapsody #2 in Wakko’s Wish. Finding someone to fill in those big shoes is a challenge in itself. Good luck with that.
1. Will this lead to more comebacks for Spielberg animation?
The often overlooked Tiny Toons (Left) and Freakazoid (Right)
Animaniacs is the favorite child of the three, but it’s two siblings of the Amblin/Warner trilogy, Tiny Toons and Freakazoid could just as easily return if the popularity goes through the roof. Switching from prime time to the Saturday morning kid exclusive Kids WB cost the sugar high smurf in red underwear the adult audience it was more intended for. Not every kid knows references like Hello Dolly or Monty Python. And with Freak-a-Con already set for March 15th on Facebook (link in social media description), there could be a chance for all three to share the spotlight. Maybe even a crossover movie.
This is TheCinematicBandicoot and hopefully this won’t just be a one shot deal for part one of the Amblin/Warner trilogy, but rather another chance to test which of three is really the most loved. The theme song to Freakazoid does say and I quote Hopes to make a movie deal. And we can all have a good Narf! about it if the word “Hopes” is replaced with “finally”. Just as long as Pinky Elmyra and the Brain are still six feet under choking on earthworms.
….Well better Animaniacs than this show