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Fanboy & Chum Chum

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Fanboy & Chum Chum
FanboyAndChumChumParamountCover.jpg
🎵🎶We'lI scream at the top of our lungs! We're gonna fly and have some fun! We don't care if you stare, I mean, look at our underwear!🎵🎶
No, thanks.
Genre: Comedy
Animated
Superhero
Adventure
Slapstick
Running Time: 22 minutes
Country: United States
Release Date: November 6, 2009 – November 2, 2012
July 12, 2014 ("Brain Freeze")
Created by: Eric Robles
Starring: David Hornsby
Nika Futterman
Jeff Bennett
Wyatt Cenac
Jamie Kennedy
Josh Duhamel
Candi Milo
Steve Tompkins
Dyana Liu
Estelle Harris
Seasons: 2
Episodes: 52


Fanboy & Chum Chum is an American CGI animated television series created by Eric Robles for Nickelodeon. It is based on Fanboy, an animated short created by Robles for Nicktoons and Frederator Studios, which was broadcast from August 14, 2009, to October 17, 2012, on Random! Cartoons. The series was first broadcast on October 12, 2009, on Nickelodeon as a preview, then officially premiered on November 6, 2009, after SpongeBob's Truth or Square, and officially ended on July 13, 2014.

Plot

Fanboy and Chum Chum are fans of all things science fiction and fantasy and wear wild superhero costumes with their underwear on the outside. Their lives are filled with adventure, from Fanboy's teacher turning into a zombie to an ice monster operating the Frosty Freezy Freeze machine. Their pal Kyle usually tags along on their escapades. Kyle is a real wizard, but Fanboy and Chum Chum are oblivious to his mystical powers, although they live in a world of fantasy.

Why It Doesn’t Deserve Any Frosty Freezy Freezes

  1. The show can easily be seen as a rehash of SpongeBob SquarePants, as Fanboy, Chum Chum, and Kyle are literal clones of SpongeBob, Patrick, and Squidward, respectively (though Kyle is likable).
  2. The art style, despite being original, Looney Tunes-esque, and also Veggietales-esque, has its problems:
    • The character designs are quite ugly and unnatural, thus, they also don't translate well in 3D. Notably, the eyes look like they're bulging out of the characters' skulls, the hands of some of the characters are too big, the ears make them look like monkeys, some of their foreheads are too big (with Kyle and Sigmund being perfect examples), and the faces look uncanny and unnatural. Also, they look like characters rejected by Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius at best.
    • The backgrounds are a bit of an eyesore, due to the colors being too bright and them looking weird.
  3. While the animation is very nice and fluid, especially for the time it came out, several animation errors can be noticed throughout several episodes. This can be noticeable in the first season.
  4. It can be inappropriate at times, like Breadwinners and Sanjay and Craig:
    • It overuses toilet and gross-out humor, especially in the episodes "Pick a Nose" and "Fanboy Stinks". Examples:
      • Fanboy sneezing into his surgical mask when he is disguised as a nurse.
      • Chum Chum has a foot with a bad odor rubbed on his face, which disgusts Fanboy.
      • Kyle attempts to pull Fanboy's finger and Fanboy flatulates on him when he refuses.
      • Fanboy and Chum Chum hiding in a waste container.
      • Mr. Mufflin's feet with a bad odor.
      • Boog saying that he likes to defecate in his diaper.
      • Fanboy getting his head stuck in a toilet.
      • A bunch of girls being attracted to Fanboy's odor in "Fanboy Stinks".
    • The episode "Moppy Dearest" has objectophilia jokes in a kids' show, where Fanboy falls in love with a mop.
  5. The use of pop culture references, especially to R-rated movies (eg. A Clockwork Orange and The Shining), is used in a bad way.
    • They even use references to cereal and other cartoons like Lucky Charms, Marvel comics, and even Schoolhouse Rock, which are all just weird.
  6. While there are some likable characters, there are a few unlikable, insufferable, or just plain loathsome characters:
    • The titular duo are immature jerks who, although not intentionally mean, annoy everyone around them, which doesn't help that their voices are a bit too overly squeaky.
      • On top of that, both of their names are downright laughable and nonsensical.
    • Yo, despite being interesting, is a young girl in Fanboy and Chum Chum's class, who obsesses over Chum Chum anytime she is seen onscreen.
    • Mr. Mufflin, despite being likable, used to be quite boring in the first season of the show, as he was a typical "depressed teacher" type character.
    • Sigmund is also somewhat mean-spirited, but only towards Kyle, as he constantly fools him into believing he can get back into milkweed.
      • In his debut episode, he gave Fanboy and Chum Chum dynamite so they can explode. Yes, really!
    • Otherwise, some of the good characters, such as Kyle, can have their fair portion of unlikable moments, with a good example being in "Separation Anxiety".
  7. Kyle's cliché of being treated like dirt is insulting, turning him into a butt-monkey, a character who gets hurt by everyone in the show for little to no (if not any) apparent reason at all.
    • Even Fanboy and Chum Chum are butt-monkeys in some episodes. In "Marsha, Marsha, Marsha", Miss Olive mistakes them as kindergarten students and forces them to attend the class for the whole day.
  8. Some characters use the same models, but with slightly different appearances, different names, and classifications. For example, Lunch Lady Cram's twin sister, Bus Lady Cram, is her but as a bus driver. She has the same appearance as Lunch Lady Cram (the only difference is the hat), the same personality as Lunch Lady Cram (only much more hurtful, cruel, and sadistic), and even the same voice actress of Lunch Lady Cram, Candi Milo (only her voice is slightly deeper and has a much more evil laugh). In one episode, before her name was revealed, everyone in the show even called her Lunch Lady Cram because of this.
  9. The background music sounds distorted and broken.
  10. There is so much noise that never stops nor ends:
    • The voice acting mostly consists of screaming and squealing, even from actors such as David Hornsby (Rickety Cricket from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia), Nika Futterman (Luna Loud and Alexis from The Loud House, Sticks The Badger from Sonic Boom, and Stretch the Tape Measure and Squeeze the Pliers from Handy Manny), Jamie Kennedy (Son of The Mask and The Jamie Kennedy Experiment), and Jeff Bennett (the eponymous character from Johnny Bravo, Kowalski from Penguins of Madagascar, the man with the yellow hat from Curious George, Mick Swagger from The Loud House, Raj and Samson from Camp Lazlo, Conrad Fleem and Shelton Klutzberry from The Replacements and Dexter's father from Dexter's Laboratory).
    • The theme song is incredibly annoying, loud, and ear-piercing and the lyrics of the second half of the song consist of "bah bah bah"s. Brad Breeck, the composer of the theme song, also did the Gravity Falls title tune.
      • Apart from the "bah bah bah"s, the song also consists of loud screaming throughout.
  11. There are painful yet insufferable sound effects.
  12. The majority of the show is painfully nonsensical and doesn't have any logical premise.
  13. Much like Breadwinners, the pacing is insufferable.
  14. The title cards, despite looking cool, have a very weird choppy looking art style to them which can sometimes look pretty uncanny. A few are also misleading, such as the one in "Bubble Trouble", where it depicts Boog getting stuck in a soap bubble, despite it never actually happening throughout the episode.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. The show has some funny moments.
  2. Some likable characters such as:
  3. Most of the title cards look kind of cool, despite the choppy-looking art style to them.
  4. Some of the character designs are passable such as Lenny, Boog, and Man-Arctica.
    • Speaking of the character designs, despite looking ugly in CGI, they kind of do look cartoony and Looney Tunes-esque.
  5. There are some good/decent episodes here and there:
    • "Fanboy" (the pilot)
    • "Berry Sick"
    • "Night Morning"
    • "Stan-Arctica"
    • "Put That Cookie Down!"
    • "GameBoy"
    • "HypnotOZed"
    • "Night Morning"
    • "Norse Code"
    • "Present Not Accounted For"
    • "Saving Private Chum Chum"
    • "Back from the Future"
    • "The Winners"
    • "No Toy Story" (which would have been a good way to start the second season, but disappointingly the producers decided to put "I'm Man-Arctica" as the first part of the second season premiere)
    • "Slime Day"
    • "Heroes vs. Villains"
    • "Super Chums"
    • "There Will Be Shrieks"
    • "A Very Brrr-y Icemas"
    • "Brain Freeze" (the series finale, which ended the show on a decent note)
  6. Season 2 is a slight improvement over Season 1 since the main titular protagonists are somewhat more likable (mainly in the second half of the season), the animation receives a more polished look, and has a few better episodes. However, these aren't saying a lot, as many flaws remain from Season 1.
  7. While the voice acting contains a lot of ear-piercing screaming, it can be quite tolerable when it isn't meant to be annoying or weird.
  8. The show's composer, Brad Breeck, released studio-quality stems of the show's theme song after he was asked, showing that he appreciates his fans and is actively helping them make parodies of his music.
  9. The animation is quite redeemable, fluid, and colorful, especially because it came out in 2009; this can be noticeable in the second season.
  10. Despite the background music sounding distorted and broken, it can sound goofy, funny, enjoyable, and endearing at times.

Notable bad episodes from the series

  1. "Wizboy" (which started the series on a sour note)
  2. "The Janitor Strikes Back"
  3. "I, Fanbot"
  4. "Fanboy Stinks"
  5. "Moppy Dearest"
  6. "Norse-ing Around"
  7. "Schoolhouse Lock"
  8. "Lucky Chums"
  9. "Excuse Me"
  10. "Brain Drain"
  11. "Power Out"
  12. "Cold War"
  13. "Lice Lice Baby"
  14. "Pick a Nose"
  15. "Chicken Pox"
  16. "A Bopwork Orange"
  17. "Precious Pig"
  18. "Frosty Mart Dream Vacation"
  19. "Bubble Trouble"
  20. "Marsha Marsha Marsha"
  21. "I'm Man-Arctica!" (arguably the worst episode of the show)
  22. "Speed Eraser" (also counts as the worst episode)
  23. "Risky Brizness"
  24. "Prank Master"
  25. "The Book Report of the Dead"
  26. "Jingle Fever"
  27. "Freeze Tag"
  28. "Crib Notes"
  29. "Fan vs. Wild"
  30. "Fanboy in the Plastic Bubble"
  31. "The Big Bopper"

Trivia

  • It was greenlit by Nickelodeon over Adventure Time, which would air on Cartoon Network because one of the workers found it "too weird".
  • It was one of the few Nicktoons to end on its terms on the main channel.
  • The series finale ("Brain Freeze") was delayed for two years and was to air on July 12, 2014, but ended up airing a day later on the main Nickelodeon channel.
  • Over the years of its existence, it would later gain a fanbase and cult-following, which is wackier than the show itself. The most common places for these fans to appear would be on platforms such as TikTok, Twitter, Tumblr, etc. It would also receive some projects from fans, such as fan art and OCs, costumes and cosplays, and memes.
  • The entire series was added to Paramount+ on December 15, 2020.[1]
  • The creator, Eric Robles, would go on to be the co-creator of Glitch Techs.

Reception

''Fanboy & Chum Chum'' was critically panned by the majority of critics and audiences alike. It was criticized for its annoying and unfunny humor and it's mostly lazy visuals. It is considered to be not only one of the worst Nickelodeon shows ever made, but also one of the worst cartoons of all time in general. It sits at a 3.2/10 on IMDb and a 4.9/10 on Rating Graph. The series is often considered the moment that Nickelodeon's decline began and they still haven't recovered since then (as stated above). However, it seemed to have gained a cult following as of now.

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