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Mike Tyson Mysteries: Thcooby Doo on Stheroids

April 24, 2017

 

Mike Tyson Mysteries is a cheaply made attempt to imitate old Hanna Barbara cartoons while claiming it is all done in the name of "parody" for the umpteenth time long after Space Ghost did it when it was a fresh concept. A stale cash-grab that simply dosen't work.

 

That was what I assumed when I heard about the show before the airing of the first episode. The third season premiered April 14th, and the show has lasted for a single good reason; a reason I learned after watching the first episode of the first season when it aired: It's terrific.

 

 

It does follow the Williams Street formula: Make an old-tymey concept and animation style, add modern, morally ambiguous characters, and put them in very surreal situations. In this instance: Scooby Doo with Tyson, a foppish ghost, a debauched pigoen, and Tyson's adopted Korean daughter who falls somewhere between "Jinkies!" and "Uncle Gadget's in trouble, Brain!" Also she's the girl.

 The voice acting is stellar, and the jokes are memorable. And Mike Tyson, whom I was expecting to be wooden and written flatly so as not to offend him, is one of my favorite characters, not just on this show, but all shows. He's like Homestar Runner (not because of the lisp, either) with a dash of Spongebob. And I don't think Tyson is even playing that much of a character...his tweets are always these super-nice, life affirming statements...they're like verbal sweater-vests for your soul.

 

Balancing Tyson's wide-eyed wonder and naive optimism is Lee, his pragmatic, aforementioned daughter, who keeps them grounded, Marquess, who manages to embellish gay stereotypes without it getting old or overdrawn, and Pigeon, who's lovable roque antics make him something of the Han Solo to Tyson's Luke. Norm MacDonald does a superb job of making a hedonistic bird believable and humorous.

 A more generic review would probably also call Pigeon (who is a man cursed with a pigeon's body) foul-mouthed, but ALL the characters cuss like sailors...Pigeon just raises the bar.

 

In short, if you haven't seen Mike Tyson Mysteries, and were fond of ANY of Adult Swim's old-is-new-and-new-is-old programs, this one really breaks the mold and takes the unusual brand of humor to a level that may not be outdone. They really need to marathon the past two seasons so newbies can play catch-up to this gem of an animated program.

 

 

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