Do you like Netflix’s new show, Green Eggs and Ham?
Yes. I do. I do like Green Eggs and Ham. I will watch it here and there. I will watch it anywhere. And so should you. If not for the awesome story, at least for the great, ear-wormy sound track.
I’ve always loved Dr. Seuss books. My dad used to read me The Sneetches and Other Stories pretty often. And of course, I’ve always been pretty familiar with Green Eggs and Ham. Is there anyone who went to elementary school in the U.S. who didn’t have at school where they read the book and ate green eggs and ham for lunch?
Well this 13 episode series expands on the book: while Sam-I-Am does spend the entire series trying to convince his new friend Guy-Am-I to try the titular dish. But the main focus of the show is on the two’s burgeoning friendship as they attempt to bring a chickeraffe to the city of Meepville.
And they get on a boat, a train, a car and meet a fox, mouse and a goat…You get my point right? Each episode focuses on a different place, vehicle or creature mentioned in the title and at some point Sam tries to get Guy to try the dish.
Other characters include: the overprotective and neurotic Michellee and her daughter E.B. who are also on their way to Meepville, for the annual Snerzco Gala and the former of whom, Guy starts to develop feelings for; the BADGUYS (yes, that’s their name) comprised of the soon-to-be-retired, has seen too much and possibly killed a man McWinkle and Gluntz, who is basically Leslie Knope from Parks and Rec, who are pursuing the pair on the run; and Snerz, a semi-Donald Trump expy who wants to get the chickeraffe to impress people.
They have good chemistry with each other no matter how they’re paired up, and they have enough layers to keep things interesting: Guy, the failed inventor has some nice motivation while Sam, the con artist is given a tragic backstory which explains everything about him…And also sets up the possibility for a second season. Which I’m oddly okay with.
Overall the cast lends itself to a nice balance of personalities and desires, so it’s never quite boring. And of course, the setting is bright and colorful. But it’s never overly-chaotic or hyper that it becomes exhausting.
The plot is surprisingly tight with a nice overarching storyline for the whole season, and has some nice (if somewhat expected) plot twists and reveals. You can tell what twists are coming. There’s no secrecy. Any older watcher will be able to see it coming, but it’s still entertaining when the twists come out. Especially when the narrator reacts.
Each episode also has its own jokes. There’s even a reference to Les Miserables! It’s never boring and the jokes are great. So many puns and different, actually clever, plays-on-words. As a writer, I appreciate that.
The animation is fluid, bright and interesting. I love it. It’s stylized so that you can instantly recognize a Seuss property, but it also uses a style of animation that other Seuss stories haven’t, which gives the show its own identity.
Everything about this show is so much better than I expected; like most Dr. Seuss adaptations struggle with expanding their stories to fit a run time: The Lorax ended up kind of fucking up the moral; Horton Hears a Who wasn’t terrible but was pretty forgetable, and we have THREE different Grinch adaptions (don’t @ me but Jim Carrey’s is obviously the superior one here). But this show, based on a book with like 70 words has a great plot, animation and soundtrack.
And it never feels like it’s trying to pander to children.
It’s a very enjoyable and clever show and it’s definitely worth a watch. I don’t know if Dr. Seuss himself would approve but who cares?
Check it out!
And that’s the scoop!
Year of release: 2019
Length: 13 episodes: 26 -28 minutes each
Executive producers: Jared Stern, Ellen DeGeneres. Jeff Kleeman, Mike Karz, David Dobkin, Sam Register
Producer: Helen Kalafatic
Directors: Lawrence Gong, Piero Piluso
Voice Actors: Michael Douglas, Adam DeVine, Eddie Izzard, Jillian Bell, Ilana Glazer, Diane Keaton and Keegan-Michael Kay