Saturday, July 12, 2014

On The Air: Clarence (2014)

After all the hype, Clarence leaves me wanting. Period.

Clarence launched in the spring with a heavy ad campaign from Cartoon Network, and was created by Skyler Page, a former storyboard artist for Adventure Time. His idea of today's kids just having stupid fun fits the network's current direction, but that's about it.

Cartoon Network's YouTube channel offers a peek:

Visually, Clarence has more in common with another recent CN creation, Steven Universe, but in terms of concept is inferior. What it really does is insult the target audience, which CN assumes won't know the difference. Real kids don't do things like Clarence and his pals, Jeff & Sumo. What CN wanted to show, understandably, was that there is more to life for kids than just video games, but Clarence comes off as being an annoyance.

While production hasn't started on a second season, the series will forge ahead without Page, who was let go by CN earlier this month after word got out that he allegedly had been engaging in some inappropriate conduct with female co-workers. That means the lead part would have to be recast, since Page, the youngest creator in CN history, was the voice of Clarence. Somehow, I have a feeling that with Page gone, Clarence won't be long for this world.

Rating: D.


Steven Dolce said...

I give it 5 stars.

hobbyfan said...

It may be you're closer to the target demo than I am.

Steven Dolce said...

I'm only 20.

hobbyfan said...

My point exactly. I'm older, more jaded and cynical. Maybe I don't get some of what passes for comedy nowadays, but I was taught that good writing requires a lot of imagination that doesn't go over the heads of the target audience. It seems to me that Clarence could stand a little mature makeover, but I fear that with Skyler Page gone, no makeover is coming that would help.