Monday, March 19, 2012

On the Air: The Aquabats! Super Show! (2012)

What do you get when you cross Devo with the Monkees and the Impossibles? How about........The Aquabats!

The Aquabats are a real-life band out of Southern California who've been around for nearly 20 years, and now are finally gaining the national exposure they've long sought, with the Hub's newest Saturday morning entry, The Aquabats! Super Show!, which launched last month, and currently has reruns airing in the early evening on Mondays.

Frontman Christian Jacobs, aka MC Bat Commander, is also one of the creative forces behind Nickelodeon's Yo Gabba Gabba!, and has shopped around the concept behind this series for a number of years. The bizarre, campy monsters shown in the following clip will remind many of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers franchise, which is still going strong as it approaches its own 20th anniversary in the US. Appropriately, the Hub recently made a programming change on Mondays so that the live-action Batman leads into repeats of Super Show!, especially considering that Jacobs has cited Batman as one of the influences behind the series.

Here's the open:

According to a Wikipedia entry on the series, and take it for as much as you think it's worth, given how Wiki-entries have often been tampered with, the band had a deal with Cartoon Network for a show, but it went south when CN shuffled out the executives who'd cut said deal. The band's previous link to CN was in composing music for Evan Dorkin's Welcome to Eltingville 1-shot special a few years back. The Hub, a relatively fresh network by comparison, signed the band for 1 season, 13 episodes, and if it goes over with the audience, you can expect renewal sometime before the end of the year.

I watched a repeat episode earlier with special guest star Jon Heder (Napoleon Dynamite) as the villain, and I have to say, it is a throwback, not only to Batman, but considering its primary spot on the schedule, the live-action Saturday shows of the 70's, like, for example, Ghost Busters. The fake commercials mixed into the show take their cues from Saturday Night Live, but are geared for children.

Now, let's see if the Aquabats can bring their act to my neck of the woods......

Rating: A-.

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