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Donkey Kong Country (TV series)

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Donkey Kong Country
Rety.jpg
"This show would definitely shower with coconut cream pies"
Genre: Comedy
Running Time: 30 minutes
Country: Canada
France
Release Date: October 17, 1997 –
July 7, 2000
Network(s): Teletoon (Canada)
France 2 and Canal+ (France)
Created by: Shigeru Miyamoto
Distributed by: Nelvana
Starring: Richard Yearwood
Andrew Sabiston
Joy Tanner
Aron Tager
Ben Campbell
Adrian Truss
Louise Vallance
Donald Burda
Len Carlson
Damon D'Oliveira
Lawrence Bayne
Rick Jones
Seasons: 2
Episodes: 40


Donkey Kong Country (titled simply Donkey Kong in France) is a Canadian-French 3D computer-animated musical comedy-adventure television series. It is based on the Nintendo franchise Donkey Kong as portrayed in the Donkey Kong Country video game series by Nintendo and Rare.

Bad Qualities

  1. The character models for every character are composed of different separate models for each body part that were animated separately via motion capture (a very lazy amateur animation technique, by the way), resulting in very weird, lazy, wonky and laughable CGI animation that sometimes borders on string puppets. The second season thankfully switched to keyframe animation, but this bought some new problems, such as less detailed models and sets and stiffer movements.
  2. Poor grasp of the source material: The show only uses elements from the first Donkey Kong Country, with the exceptions of Dixie, Kaptain Scurvy, who is loosely based off the DKC2 enemy, Kannon, Green Kroc who is just a reskin of a Kritter (though he could be likened to DKC2's Klomp), and Kutlass, who shares his name with a much smaller enemy in DKC2 while being a reskin of K. Rool (somewhat like DKC2's main antagonist, Kaptain K. Rool). The other characters from the subsequent games, such as Swanky Kong, Wrinkly Kong, and Kiddy Kong are nowhere to be seen. Also, the animal buddies aren't present, and K. Rool's army consists only of Klump, Krusha, Kritters, and Klap Traps, leaving out all the other animal enemies from Donkey Kong Country such as Gnawties, Zingers, and Neckies. What makes this worse is that Donkey Kong Country 3 was released a year before the show's premiere, and Donkey Kong 64 had been out for a while by the time the show ended, so there's no real excuse.
    • It might be possible that the crew who worked on the show was only provided the first game as their source for knowledge on the series and were given nearly no reference material from the licensors such as Rare, hence explaining the lack of material from the second and third games and characters from those two looking entirely different.
    • Dixie, Candy, and Funky look quite different from their game appearances. K. Rool's right eye is not bloodshot as in the game artwork, though it does get larger when he ponders, and his cape, which runs the length of his torso in the game, barely extends below his shoulders in the show.
  3. Bizarre writing. For example, in the episode "The Big Switch-A-Roo", King K. Rool wants to use Cranky's brain swapping machine to get knowledge out of books. This is extremely dumb because books don't have brains.
  4. Almost non-existent lip-syncing (mostly due to the fact that the characters barely show their teeth or because of the animation). In fairness, the second season has better lip-syncing due to its switch to keyframe animation.
  5. For some reason, the series has a weird and unneeded genre, a musical genre, because the songs in the show are just plain silly and come out of nowhere. On top of that, there are usually two songs per episode (except for the final episode which has zero songs whatsoever).
  6. Depending on the song, the singing voices for most of the characters are mediocre or just bad. Diddy's is the worst in this regard, as it sounds like Andrew Sabiston (his voice actor) is doing a terrible Mickey Mouse impression.
    • Also depending on the songs, the lyrics are usually pretty awful. For example, in "Metal Head", they just sing about computer stuff without much coherence or any understanding of computers. Sometimes the songs themselves have great instruments and a catchy beat but the lyrics somewhat ruin them.
      • The song also sounds very similar to the 1997 Daft Punk song "Around the World".
  7. Most of the characters are obnoxious, more often than not acting like total idiots.
  8. Bluster Kong and Eddie the Mean Old Yeti are terrible characters and don't even appear in the games. Not to mention Bluster looks like a DeviantArt OC and Eddie is literally just a reskin of Donkey Kong but with white fur and a hat.
  9. Questionable moments. For example, during the "Our Love is Stronger than a Golden Banana" song, Donkey Kong says "I'd shower you with coconut cream pies", which later ended up spawning the Expand Dong meme.
  10. Kong for a Day was arguably the worst episode in the show.
  11. Primitive character designs for both seasons, even more so in the second season.
  12. Donkey Kong's voice acting, while well-delivered, sounds too childish for his character (the future Donkey Kong games have Donkey Kong grunting like a real gorilla).
  13. It gets extremely mean-spirited at times, especially towards Donkey Kong.
  14. Candy Kong is extremely unlikable, as she constantly gets angry at Donkey Kong most of the time, even when it's not his fault. For example, when Bluster threw a cake in her face, she blamed Donkey Kong for it even though he didn't do anything. Another example is when she slipped on a banana peel in front of Donkey Kong (that was actually secretly planted by K. Rool), and she instantly blamed him for it and wanted nothing to do with him afterwards.
    • Diddy Kong and Dixie Kong are also unlikable, as Diddy Kong keeps manipulating Donkey Kong into doing bad deeds most of the time, while Dixie Kong is little more than filler for the show.
  15. The final episode, "Message in a Bottle Show", was a weak and lousy way to end the show, as it was a clip show episode.

Good Qualities

  1. Despite all these bad qualities, the show is tons of fun, and the jokes and snarkiness of the characters, particularly Cranky and K. Rool, can be pretty funny at times.
  2. The theme song is great and catchy.
  3. The voice acting in the show is pretty good (aside from the singing).
    • Benedict Campbell is an excellent choice of voice casting K. Rool.
      • The late Aron Tager also does a great job voicing Cranky Kong and his voice fits Cranky's personality perfectly.
  4. Donkey Kong's singing voice is great.
  5. Some of the songs (Like "K. Rool's Finest Hour", "The Curse of the Golden Banana", "Eddie, Let Me Go Back To My Home", "The Mirror Never Lies", "Pirate's Scorn", "Road to Success", "Diddy Drop Rap" and "I'm Nobody's Hero) are fun to listen to. The famous metal band Alestorm even did a cover of "Pirate's Scorn", which they played entirely seriously.
  6. Despite how weird, wonky, and laughable the CGI animation looks, it was quite something to behold when the show was new, the choice to use it fits with the SNES Donkey Kong Country Trilogy.
  7. Even though the characters can be obnoxious, they are also prone to many of the show’s hilarious moments, especially with K. Rool screaming “WHY NOT?!” in “Bug-A-Boogie”.
  8. The show has its fair share of good episodes; in fact, most of the episodes aren't bad, including:
  9. At the same time, most episodes always have a so-bad-it's-good vibe like in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog due to how hilariously ridiculous and insane each episode can get.
  10. It was the first show to be entirely animated using Motion Capture technology, which was innovative back then.
  11. There are some funny one-liners, even if they are questionable, such as "GO HOME AND LET ME GET SOME SLEEP!!" and "Monkey Kong? Lemme see that!" in the final episode.
    • With this in mind, the music heard in every episode is enjoyable, catchy, and well-composed more often than not.

Trivia

  • The cast of the Donkey Kong Country cartoon series was also featured in the France-only programming block, Planet Donkey Kong (French: La planète de Donkey Kong, later renamed DKTV and DKTV.cool), which had a format similar to The Bozo Show and King Koopa's Kool Kartoons and ran from September 4th, 1996 to September 1st, 2001. The voice cast was also completely different from the cartoon series.
  • Some alumni from previous Nintendo cartoons appear, such as Andrew Sabiston (who previously voiced Yoshi in Super Mario World) and Len Carlson (Who previously voiced Ganon in the Zelda cartoon).
  • Cranky being a potions expert would be carried over into Donkey Kong 64, where his potions give the player new moves.
  • The episode Kong for a Day is getting an upcoming reanimated collab.
  • There is an unofficial Season 3 parody made by a YouTuber named blockfrog.
  • The show supposedly had unreleased scripts that were deemed too inappropriate to actually be made into episodes.
  • The song "Pirate's Scorn" from the episode "Booty and the Beast" was covered by Scottish pirate metal band Alestorm for their sixth studio album Curse of the Crystal Coconut.
  • This show spawned tons of memes thanks to Donkey Kong's hilariously off-model design and expressions along with his catchphrase "Banana Slamma". Same can be said about memes related to other characters including King K. Rool, Diddy Kong, Bluster Kong, Eddie, and Dixie Kong.

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