Robotboy (Series 2)

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Robotboy (Series 2)
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When you think Robotboy, do you think Ren and Stimpy?
Genre: Action
Adventure
Comedy
Science fiction
Running Time: 30 minutes
Country: United Kingdom
France
Release Date: November 1, 2005 – September 27, 2008
Network(s): Cartoon Network
France 3
Created by: Jan Van Rijsselberge
Distributed by: Alphanim
Warner Bros. Television Distribution
Starring: Laurence Bouvard
Lorraine Pilkington
Rupert Degas
Lewis MacLeod
Toga Igawa
Eiji Kusuhara
Seasons: 2
Episodes: 52 (104 segments)


Robotboy is a British-French animated children's television series which is produced by French production company Alphanim for France 3 and Cartoon Network Europe, as well as the studios LuxAnimation and Cofinova 1. It was created and designed by Jan Van Rijsselberge and was directed in Alphanim's studio in Paris by Charlie Bean, who worked on other programs such as Dexter's Laboratory, The Powerpuff Girls, and Samurai Jack. However, for series 2, aka seasons 3 and 4, Bob Camp of The Ren & Stimpy Show fame (per Cartoon Network's orders) and Heath Kenny took over as directors, which caused the series to fall downhill.

Plot

Robotboy is the latest creation of the world-renowned scientist Professor Moshimo. Due to fears that Robotboy would be stolen by his arch-enemy Dr. Kamikazi and his main henchman Constantine to be used to take over the world, Professor Moshimo entrusts Robotboy to 10-year-old Tommy Turnbull, his biggest fan living in San Francisco. While being protected by Tommy and his two friends Lola and Gus (or "G-Man" as he calls himself), Robotboy learns how to behave and act as if he were a real boy while occasionally battling Dr. Kamikazi and Constantine who sought out to capture him.

Bad Qualities

  1. The tone and style of the first series has been thrown out and in its place, we get a show with an identity crisis that can't decide if it wants to be Ren and Stimpy or an action show, appeal to fans of Ren and Stimpy, or fans of the first two seasons of Robotboy. For instance, if you are a R&S fan and you want to get into it because Bob Camp's directing, you'd need to watch the first series to understand certain things, like who Protoboy is (The Revenge of Protoboy is even a direct sequel to Brother from season 1).
  2. Speaking of Protoboy, his episodes are a prime example of how this show can't appeal to both crowds. Protoboy episodes are always darker and more serious, which would put off R&S fans who'd find them stupid.
  3. Robotgirl, a fan favorite, like the first two seasons, only appeared in one episode. To make matters worse, she never superactivated and was reduced to a damsel in distress.
  4. The new music tracks are often blander and more generic, contrast to the older music, which was more unique and distinct sounding.
  5. Some of the new villains are lazily written like Aunty Gravitee (who is a floating, overweight humanoid alien who runs an intergalactic freakshow) and Klaus von Affenkugel (who is a rich disabled man with weak muscles bullied for his disease which is quite disturbing for a kids show).
  6. There isn't as much action scenes as the first series, this was due to Bob Camp being more interesting in comedy than action scenes.
  7. A jarring tone-shift from the first series, into being a crude and bizarre Ren and Stimpy-like show with some action elements.
  8. Kurt, Tommy's' school bully, becomes more sadistic, doing things like tying up Tommy on the school flag, trying to kill him with a racing car, a military satellite and a giant robot.
  9. The gross-out/toilet humor gets pretty worse in this season, along with unfunny moments and jokes, such as in The Revenge of Protoboy when Robotboy apparently dies, there's a random scene of Dwight talking in his sleep that lasts for 13 seconds, which while probably supposed to lighten the mood, comes off as distracting and perhaps even insulting.
  10. Kurt, Tommy's bully, does get humiliated in the episode Science Fear, where he took off his clothes due to heat, gets covered in ants, being grabbed by his father for using his machine, and gets arrested, which is rather harsh for a young child.
  11. It was never properly explained why Protoboy comes back to life after being freaking killed several times like someone from Happy Tree Friends or Popee the Performer. Which doesn't work at all in a show like this, as it goes against the established logic of the show up until this point. Not to mention Protoboy is quite unintentionally sympathetic (he was reprogrammed by Kamikazi), which makes this pretty meanspirited. Though to be fair, this was in series 1, but it's taken to far worse levels in series 2 to the comparatively mild example in Brother.
  12. Weird, surreal and random out of place humor, which really doesn't fit the more subdued style and setting of the first two seasons, such as randomly talking animals.
  13. Several of the characters like, Superactivated Robotboy, Deb, Donnie, Special Agent, Bjorn, Bjornbot, and Ronald Rump got pointless redesigns. In the case of Ronald, he, a black man, for some reason had his skin color changed to white, which comes off as racist.
  14. Barely any superactivation, despite being a core part of the show.
  15. Not that many decent fight scenes.
  16. Bad episodes like Ooh That Smell, Aunty Gravitee, The Legend of Brainy Yak, Udder Madness and The Revenge of Protoboy (to some).
  17. Blander and more simplistic-looking animation. It can also come off as wonky, cheap, and lazy at times.
  18. The writing can be poor, such as in The Revenge of Protoboy, where there are two instances of plot points being set-up, but they don't go anywhere and are forgotten about and in I Hero!, there's a pretty bad continuity error in that The Human Fist is stated to be a fictional character, despite having appeared for real in 2 other episodes prior.
  19. Unfunny and arguably downright offensive jokes about ugly people (I Hero!) and homosexuals (Runaway Robot). For the former, a romance scene making fun of them and in the case of the latter, portraying them in a creepy-light when they surround an uncomfortable man wearing a wig with suggestive looks.
  20. Bad attempts to be serious in episodes like "Ogbot" and "The Revenge of Protoboy", either due to poor writing or bad execution.
  21. Just like fellow The Ren & Stimpy Show executive producer Vanessa Coffey's writing on Rayman: The Animated Series, the series feels overall half-hearted, which was likely the case considering Bob Camp only did the show for money.

Good Qualities

  1. Some of the new music can be nice to hear.
  2. Some of the villains can still be enjoyable, funny, cool, and entertaining like Dr. Kamikazi, Constantine, Bjorn Bjornson, Bjornbot, and Protoboy (despite some of his poor writing). Including some of the new ones like Felonious Hexx.
  3. The new backgrounds are colorful, more detailed, and quite pleasant to look at.
  4. It has a great art style reminiscent of early-mid 2000s, similar to shows like Samurai Jack and Dexter's Laboratory.
  5. Constantine's goofy antics are sometimes funny. (Depending on your view)
  6. It still has likable characters (Tommy, Lola, Professor Moshimo, Robotboy, Miumiu, Robotgirl, etc.).
  7. Robotboy and Robotgirl have very creative and adorable designs.
  8. The animation is good for the most part.
  9. The voice acting is decent if it's not annoying (Gus) or dull (Tommy sometimes).
  10. It has some funny moments.
  11. Some good/decent episodes such as Automatommy, Grow-No Mo!, Ro-Who?, Science Fear, C.H.O.P and The Return of Robotgirl.
  12. Some cool action scenes.
  13. There are some heartwarming moments.
  14. Protoboy doesn't die in his final episode.

Trivia

  • Jan Van Rijsselberge doesn't appear to think too highly of the season and has admited the quality of it was "inconsistent". He also criticized Bob Camp's direction, for not following the series' bible, which caused him to be fired from the series as a result.
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Videos

Near the end.

Comments

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