Thursday, April 18, 2013

Toons After Dark: Stripperella (2003)

Shortly after changing its name from The Nashville Network (or TNN, for short), Spike TV decided they wanted to cut in on [adult swim]'s action with adult cartoons. Unfortunately, that noble experiment ended in abject failure. Oh, did it ever.

But it wasn't for a lack of trying, oh, no sirree. Spike struck a deal with comics legend Stan Lee to develop a totally new animated series, and since Stan wasn't as actively involved at Marvel anymore, well..........!

Stripperella led off Spike's Thursday night 90-minute block, and, admittedly, had some of the best animation of the group. After all, it boasted Kevin Altieri, formerly of Warner Bros. Animation (i.e. Batman: The Animated Series) as a producer-director. Pamela Anderson (ex-Baywatch) not only was cast in the title role, she doubled as creative consultant on the series, and then-beau Kid Rock composed the show's closing theme. Unfortunately, that isn't available right at the moment.

So, where did Stripperella go wrong? Hard to say, really. You have to applaud Lee & Spike TV for thinking outside the box. Erotica Jones (Anderson) was a typical Stan Lee heroine, after a sort. Like, who'd ever think a stripper could moonlight as a costumed heroine? While there were the predictable teases of Erotica/Stripperella baring more than necessary, which would've raised red flags with the usual cast of namby-pamby zealots, there were no nip slips to be had. The show actually lacked in star power, as in guest stars. WWE honcho Vince McMahon, who'd made his toon debut on MTV's Celebrity Deathmatch a few years earlier, guested in one episode as a lecherous--and corrupt--businessman who tried to buy the club where Erotica worked. Too bad that episode isn't available.

What we have to settle for, though, is this 16 second clip from "Beauty & The Obese":

Rating: B-.


magicdog said...

Stripperella went wrong because it kept going for the lowest common denominator. It didn't help that was was'nt a fan of Pam Anderson either.

The show had potential, but Stan Lee is NOT the creative genius he's been purported to be - at least based on what those in the know have told me. Having his finger in the pie didn't offer anything positive.

If you want to see a great review of the show, may I recomment Rowdy C Reviews on Blip-TV.

hobbyfan said...

Stan Lee today is like Vince McMahon, ironically enough. Two guys who were once great innovators, but now coasting on past success. If you follow the current Spider-Man newspaper strip, you know what I'm talking about.

Perhaps we can chalk it up to good fortune that Stripperella's failure prevented Stan's next project---a collaboration with Hugh Hefner, of all people----from reaching fruition!