Archive for October, 2008
Posted in LTV21 Videos on October 26th, 2008 by Monsieur boeuf la tête
Originally posted elsewhere 12/07/2007
I’ve been thinking of putting together a list of videos that embody everything that *was* Liquid TV. I’ve been procrastinating, working on other projects, just generally NOT compiling the list. I see that Olive, The Other Reindeer is coming on Cartoon Network and figured I’d give it a shot since I had never seen it. Boy, did I not expect it to meet the Liquid TV standard but I was happily surprised.
Olive, the Other Reindeer is a charming little ‘alternative’ Christmas story that’s cute and colorful and sure to be a favorite among odd little children like most of us were once upon a time. The fact that it has such mature humor and dialog will surely make anyone with more than ten brain cells ask themselves, “Seriously, what the hell is going on here.. this is a kid’s story??”
While watching this 45 minute oddity, all I kept thing of over and over was Thomas and Nardo. Thomas and Nardo had this particularly strange quality to it. 2D figures mapped onto 3D objects, all very primative and jerky. It was plagued with very odd leaps in logic and rationality and all the characters were very abstract to the point of not being portrayed as ‘human’ as much as paper dolls glued to popsicle sticks and pranced around by unseen puppeteers. Olive shares this odd abstraction. The characters are all mis-proportioned and shaped, barely recognizable as human (the ones that were supposed to be) and the oddness in logic is pervasive.
While Thomas and Nardo were jerky and stuffed into mere seconds, Olive has almost a full hour to stretch it’s legs and pace itself. One of the gimmicks that pops up throughout the whole show is what the Wikipedia entry calls “mondegreens”, the mis-hearing of names or phrases as something similar but totally different. You may be familiar with misheard lyrics like “‘Scuse me while I kiss this guy!” Just like that.
This is where the whole “other reindeer” thing comes from. One of Santa’s reindeer is out of commission and he’s holding press conferences about whether he’ll be able to make his deliveries that Christmas. Olive and her penguin friend, Martini, hear mention on the radio Santa needing help from “…all of the other reindeer…” Olive hears it correctly, but her tuxedoed friend convinces her that he said “Olive, the other reindeer.” Knowing she, actually a dog, has always been different from the other dogs, becomes convinced that she must be some kind of odd reindeer and embarks on a trip to the North Pole to help Santa.
I guess it’s worth noting that Olive was executive produced by Matt Groening (The Simpsons, Futurama), Drew Barrymore (Actress a-plenty) and produced by Michael Stipe (R.E.M.) who also all provided voice. Almost all the other voices were either “big name actors” or perennial voice actors, with only a few unknowns.
Conclusion: I nominate this holiday nugget for LTV21 for its unique animation style, its odd jump jumps in logic and dialog and for including references to things like ‘deus ex machina’ with asides like “Look it up” when characters inquire about the meaning. This is obviously a creative, quirky holiday romp with extra depth of vision for those who care to see it.
Posted in Admin Notes on October 25th, 2008 by Monsieur boeuf la tête
So.. this is where we start.
Fifteen years ago, when MTV still played music videos from time to time, they were looking at capturing the interest of young hip audiences with some of the strangest programming found on TV at the time. Before we had the web and sites like YouTube to entertain us endlessly, we had to seek out the strange and interesting at hole in the wall video stores and a few TV outlets like MTV.
Liquid TV wasn’t the only TV show featuring these videos and probably wasn’t the first. MTV’s high profile brought this medium to the attention of all the young’uns looking for their cool and weird fixes.
Before long, we started seeing full length shows that were either spinoffs of LTV shorts, or were riding the wave of newfound popularity and interest in animation by the general public.
There are a lot of videos floating around these days.. a lot of funny and strange stuff.. but every now and then one stands out as having the spirit of LTV.
I plan on featuring some of these videos here.
I wish I had time to keep up on everything going on in the world of animation, so I’m looking to anyone who stumbles across this blog to submit candidates. Hell, maybe we’ll even have voting at some point! (once I figure out how to do that)
So.. welcome. I’d love to hear what everyone thinks.