2021 has been a strong year for television animation. Show as the Owl lodge and Child Cosmic pushed the boundaries of what shows for all ages could accomplish, while Invincible and Esoteric has shown that adult animation can be as epic and captivating as ever. However, in the midst of the glut of quality content, there are a handful of programs that for one reason or another have fallen through the cracks and haven’t received the proper attention. For fans of cartoons of all kinds, here is a brief list of five titles that are well worth your time.
Steven Universe fans will love Centaurworld
Centaurworld was fairly quickly introduced and concluded in 2021, concluding its story in a succinct two-season arc. That didn’t stop it from being such a delicious surprise. What starts out as surreal, Wizard of ounce-esque musical fantasy quickly evolves into an interdimensional epic, without losing its charm or sense of self along the way.
The jokes land, the songs are catchy and clever, and the vocals all do a great job of bringing the characters to life – especially Kimiko Glenn as the head of the Horse series, who expertly sells the character’s emotional journey and meaning. special humor. Centaurworld is apparently a children’s show, but its themes and storytelling are strong enough that anyone can take this journey and get something out of it.
Centaurworld is available to stream on Netflix.
Adventure Time fans will love Aquaman: King of Atlantis
King of Atlantis is a far cry from Jason Momoa’s oceanic epic on the character, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth your time. Instead, this three-part miniseries focuses on the humor and humanity of its lead role. Aquaman is the king, yes, but by what right? Because he beat his asshole brother Ocean Master in a fist fight? These lingering issues of insecurity and impostor syndrome become a key motivator in Aquaman’s quest to protect the Seven Seas, and in fact form a solid foundation for the character’s motivation.
It’s also pretty funny, not acknowledging the absurdity inherited from mythical superhero stories but basking in it. Cooper Andrews and Gillian Jacobs are having a blast as Aquaman and Mera and their chemistry is downright lovable. The animation style is different from what DC Animated Universe fans might be used to, but it’s still vibrant and expressive and works wonders in the horror-tinged second episode. The whole thing is just tons of fun.
Aquaman: King of Atlantis is available to stream on HBO Max.
The Suicide Squad fans will love the Super Scammers
On the other end of the superhero spectrum, we have an animated adaptation of Mark Millar’s 2012 limited series, Super crooks. The series, which shares continuity with the ephemeral that of Jupiter Heritage, follows a team of lesser-known supervillains as they attempt to pull off one last major heist before retiring – only to have things turn sour in nearly every turn.
The result is an airy yet entertaining adventure through a world familiar to genre fans of all kinds, albeit the details are different. There’s a lot of comedy to be had – especially from the Diesel Brothers, a pair of silly but impossible to kill professional wrestlers – but where Great crooks really offers is on the action. It’s fast, it’s dramatic, and it’s really horrible when it wants to be. The show probably won’t change anyone’s life, but anyone who needs a dose of morons with powers while waiting for Season 3 of the Boys could do worse than this calamitous caper.
Great crooks is available to stream on Netflix.
Aqua Teen Hunger Force fans will love the Freak Brothers
Gilbert Shelton’s underground comic book comes to life in this animated series, which sends the eponymous weed-loving trio of 1969 into the distant future of 2020. Now living with a yuppie couple and their militant brother-in-law in a San Francisco gentrified, the brothers do their best to navigate a world of artificial intelligence, tech monopolies and legalized marijuana, all while trying to bring the spirit of the summer of love to the worst year ever. the temperature.
A little like Great crooks, the Freak Brothers is not a very complex product; a stoner comedy enhanced by the limitless potential of animation. What really makes the show is its incredibly stacked voice cast: Woody Harrelson, Pete Davidson, and John Goodman do a lot to elevate the material into something worth watching, while Tiffany Haddish takes on Kitty – the rude brothers, perpetually in heat a cat who feels like a remnant of a lesser Family Guy episode – and turns it into one of the highlights of the series. Add in a few clever jokes and a little well-observed satire on occasion, and you’ve got a good drug time.
the Freak Brothers is available for streaming on Tubi TV.
Netflix’s Inside Job fans will love Helluva Boss
From the court Hazbin Hotel was picked by A24 in 2020, fans waited patiently to see what Vivienne Medrano’s hellish opus might look like as a full series. Fortunately, Helluva Chief was there to help and entertain them along the way. The series follows the Immediate Murder Professionals, a group of demonic assassins who make a living taking revenge on the living on behalf of the dead. However, more often than not, IMPs find themselves stumbled by their own iniquities, insecurities, or simply the dangers that come with living in hell.
Helluva Chief is a twisted take on workplace comedy, but it works thanks to the care and observation that goes into the cast. Team leader and main character Blitzo (the ‘O’ is silent) in particular is not only funny and clever, but nuanced and, at times, even tragic. It’s a surprising depth of a show mostly built on swear words and silly songs, but it’s what makes this bizarre world worth returning to time and time again. It’s a weird ride, but totally worth it.
Helluva Chief is available to watch on YouTube.
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