Sunday morning in NYC. Among all the political shows which alternately scare the crap out of you and send you into a deep depression, there are a few televised church services, mediocre old movies, madness from the SciFi Channel(often so bad that it’s fun to be snarky when viewing them), endless re-runs of the (groan) reality shows “all my money still doesn’t make me happy”,(OH, PLEASE) and CARTOONS.
Of course, I grew up watching the bugs bunny and his pals, all the Hanna-Barbera(The Jetsons, The Flintstones) and Depatie Freiling cartoons (Pink Panther, etc)but stations rarely show those anymore. I have to confess that in the absence of anything truly uplifting to watch, I have become a fan of Sponge Bob SquarePants. This crazy little show about a yellow kitchen sponge who lives in a pineapple in an underwater city populated by fish, is an unexpected oasis of hilarity. I first started watching it while hanging out with my nephew when he was a toddler–and dreaded it. To my considerable surprise, I discovered that the comedy writing on Spongebob is actually great.
One bit that killed me: his best friend, Patrick Star(a starfish, of course) asked to come into Spongebob’s house to use his bathroom. He comes out saying, “I’d wait a while if I were you; you don’t want to go in there”. Behind him, the toilet comes crawling out of the bathroom on its hands, gasping for breath, and says, “Help me!”, coughs and dies. The delivery of lines by the vocal talent is KILLER and everyone except Spongebob is a master of dry humor, which balances perfectly against Spongebob’s perpetual optimism. The eye movement of the characters–even when they aren’t moving, is classic Warner Brothers,and often funnier than what is being said. The Spongebob Movie–yes they did an entire movie–was a shocker; it was funny,then took an incredibly serious turn that left you actually crying….and the hero was David Hasselfhoff!!I won’t explain how; you just have to see it.
So the next time you decide you can’t take any more of the Housewives of Atlanta and all the rest of that ilk,go to Nickelodeon Channel and see what Spongebob’s doing…