W and G (May contain nuts)

Wallace and GromitSunday my dad and I took the kids to see Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit. Hands down, the best movie I’ve seen this year. The story is funny and quirky, and the claymation is simply a delight to watch. And it’s genuinely funny, which is rare in a movie these days; like my dad said, I haven’t laughed so hard at a movie in a long time.

Amazon has a good deal on the first three Wallace and Gromit films on DVD. I’ve got a couple of them on videotape around here somewhere, but it sure would be nice to get a hold of this…

In other related news, a fire wiped out Aardman Animations over the weekend… destroyed nearly everything, including the props and sets from those first Wallace and Gromit films. That’s rough.

Cartoon skeletons

This is cool yet random and kind of freaky at the same time: Skeletal Systems of Cartoon Characters.

Animation was the format of choice for children’s television in the 1960s, a decade in which children’s programming became almost entirely animated. Growing up in that period, I tended to take for granted the distortions and strange bodies of these entities.


I decided to take a select few of these popular characters and render their skeletal systems as I imagine they might resemble if one truly had eye sockets half the size of its head, or fingerless-hands, or feet comprising 60% of its body mass.

I like Charlie Brown’s skeleton a lot, but nothing there is quite as alien and disturbing as Buttercup’s (the Powerpuff Girl) skeleton. And this is cool: “Twenty-two of these are currently on show at Stumptown Coffee/Belmont in Portland, Oregon the month of December 2004.” I wish I had time to see them since we’re in Portland right now, but oh well.

Via Boing Boing.

Clone Wars

This is a total geek-out post. You’ve been warned.

The kids and I have been watching the Clone Wars mini-series that was on Cartoon Network (we’re watching them on the computer, a few episodes at a time… it’s much more convenient that way), and enjoying it quite a bit. Hell of a clever idea, too, the way they put it together, with 3 minute segments/episodes.

Anyway, I have to say that by far the best episode is Chapter 13, the “Mace Windu kicks ass” episode. This one little episode alone basically makes all this whole Star Wars prequel stuff worthwhile.


Quick quiz: who around here doesn’t like Scooby Doo?

Odd that a cartoon that first aired before I was even born can be so popular, yet it’s even a favorite of my three-year-old daughter, Kaitlyn. And of course, it’s on my list of favorite cartoons, too. Well, the “classic” stuff, anyway.

Nostalgia. What’s it good for, eh?

Anyway. My definition of “classic” Scooby Doo is pretty much limited to the original series, “Scooby Doo, Where are You?“. Some of “The New Scooby Doo Movies” are amusing (these aired right after the original series in the early ’70’s), but some are really bad (badly drawn/animated, badly conceived) and it’s hard to reconcile them into “canon” anyway. Anything after that I could just throw out— especially anything dealing with Scrappy Doo. Ugh.

(Ironically, Kaitlyn loves Scrappy Doo. I wonder if she’ll grow out of that?)

I’ve gotten a big kick out of the newer animated movies, though (especially the first of them, Scooby Doo on Zombie Island). They fit perfectly into my notion of what the Scooby “universe” should be, give or take. Well-done and modern art and animation, too.

So, I was excited today to find out that there’s a new Scooby Doo cartoon series on TV— the first in at least 12 years— that seems to fit canonically into the Scoobyverse between the original series and the new movies: “What’s New, Scooby Doo?” It just came out last September on the WB. Looks to be the same animation artwork/style from the new movies. And it’s going to be airing on Cartoon Network starting the end of this month. Is that cool or what?

(Jeez… I am such a geek… but I couldn’t resist.)