This week, I wanted to review Netflix’s Flavors of Youth but unfortunately life got in the way. It was a busy week. So, I decided it was time to review more web animations. Rather than following any kind of theme, like my CalArts animations review, I just picked some of my favorites that aren’t long enough to warrant a whole review.
Obituary is based on a webcomic following the high school misadventures of June Crocker, a girl who was raised by ghosts in a mortuary, after the ironic death of her parents.
The animated pilot focuses on June’s first day of high school, where she struggles to adapt to other humans while dealing with her ghost family. She gains a nerdy best friend, Blatsy, and an enemy in the school’s most popular girl, Lisa Rose. Her ghost family is caring, but is clueless about how the human world works.
The pilot sets up the show as a loving parody of the tropes typically found in this kind of high school dramas; it’s self-aware and genuinely funny. It relishes in the cliches, which makes for a fun time.
The pilot also lays out some questions for the series to explore; June’s parents died, but yet their ghosts are nowhere to be seen so where are they? What is up with her odd necklace? How is she going to keep the identity of her adoptive family secret? How do ghosts raise a human child?
I assume that the series would follow the general plot of the webcomic. I haven’t read much of it, but it’s pretty entertaining. It’s a good premise either way.
The voice acting in the pilot is particularly great.
Writers: Michael and Zachary Barryte
Animation: Studio Yotta
Voice Actors: Kellie Whisler, Kimia Behpoornia, Ashley Strumwasser , Catie Wayne, Ari Stidham, Jordan Stidham, Michael Barryte , Greg Wilmot , Alex Faciane
This thesis film is just about one of the most ridiculous and creative things I have ever watched. It focuses on a gas station store clerk and a seemingly butter obsessed punk dude. It’s a simple situation that is really dependent on body language and dialogue, and this short makes it work.
The character designs are my favorite part; they’re really unique and manage to really convey the personalities of the unnamed duo.
Good for a quick laugh and burst of creativity.
Writer: Kinga Nagorka
Voice Actors: Youtube user Cr1TiKaL
A tragic story where Death, longing for companionship, falls in love with a deer. However, he cannot touch her. It has no dialogue and is accompanied only by some animal noises and melancholy music that manages to match the mood perfectly.
The backgrounds and animation are particularly beautiful. It’s all hand drawn, which is amazing. It’s better than some of the stuff I’ve seen on TV.
I’m a fan of works that personify Death, especially those that make Death a kind or sympathetic figure, like The Book Thief . There’s a lot of ways it can be done and this one is particularly poignant, since it’s reliant on body language and music to convey his personality. It’s wonderful.
Writer: Marsha Orderstijn
Music: Ramon de Wilde
Another “pilot” episode for a show that hasn’t come out yet. According to the creator, the show will follow the malcontent, sarcastic Becky Prim, a student at an average ordinary high school who loves two things: cigarettes and her “bench.” After dying of a bee sting, Becky Prim decides to exact revenge on those who wronged her, with the help of the famous murderess Lizzie Borden
Yes. It’s that kind of show. According to the creator, Becky isn’t going to be dead in the series and this episode was intended to be a season finale but it was his favorite idea, so he decided to go with it.
I can’t blame him. It’s…something.
I do really enjoy it but it’s hard to explain especially since there’s a segment towards the end that I am not sure at all what is going on. I’ve watched this pilot several times and I still can’t make head or tails of it.
As for its humor, this pilot is twice as self aware as Obituary and twenty-times darker. The “mean girl,” Jessica, in this show is a literal psychopath. Who also has some of the best lines ever written: “So much jabber. Sometimes you just want to lollipop their throat with a gel pen.” And the “nerd” character is a creep, with no redeeming qualities. An interesting take in this day and age.
I really hope something more comes out of this. The pilot is only in “proof-of-concept,” meaning that it isn’t fully colored or animated, but the humor and writing more than make up for it. I really want this to be a full series.
The pilot has already gotten plenty of attention on the web since it was released in 2016, though I haven’t seen many people talking about it.
I would also like to note that the creator also voices all the characters except for Ello, which is a pretty impressive range. I had no idea they were all by the same person.
If you like Daria, or Invader Zim, you’ll definitely like this. If you like both then this is the perfect video for you.
Writer: Karl Hadrika
Voice Actors: Karl Hadrika, Shan Wu
And that’s the scoop!