Avatar the Last Airbender transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right Episode 11

Cold Open

Earth, Water, Fire and air. Only the Avatar, master of all four elements can save the world. After 100 years frozen in time, Ang the last air bender must master all 4 elements to stop the Fire nation from ruling the world. Join me as we explore the mystical world of Avatar: The last Airbender.

Podcast Intro

What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a podcast where I take a moment to give you the quick history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. You can call me David Devine Hughes, and I’m kind of student of all things animation. You can find me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr and on facebook at facebook.com/toonlore. As always, I want to give a thank to everyone who has been listening to and sharing the podcast, I’m so happy to say that we have passed over 700 downloads for the show! It is surreal to see this number continually go up. Also I want to give a shout out to my listeners in Virginia. About 30% of my listeners are in Virginia, specifically Ashburn and Washington. So if you are one of my VA listeners hit me up on twitter and I’ll shout out your social twitter handle. Speaking of shout outs we have quite a few people who requested this episode. So shout outs to Sarah Chua, Krysta, Charlese, William Blount, Simar Sethi, Brandon Multon you can find him on instagram @brandonlava and Tres Swygert you can also find him on instagram at@mrcontro. Again I want to welcome you all to one of my favorite tv shows of all time Avatar the last air bender.

Show intro

  • overview

So lets jump right in, Avatar: The Last Airbender, also known as Avatar: The Legend of Aang in some regions, is an Emmy award-winning American animated television series that aired for three seasons on Nickelodeon and the Nicktoons Network. The series was created and produced by Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, who served as executive producers along with Aaron Ehasz. Avatar is set in an Asian-influenced world of martial arts and elemental manipulation. The show drew on elements from East Asian, South Asian, and Western culture, making it a mixture of what were previously traditionally separate categories of Japanese anime and Western domestic cartoons.

My connection to the show/spoiler free synopsis of first season

Avatar holds a unique place with me since it came out at a formative time in my life. When it was released in 2005 one of my homies came up to me and told me that the fight scenes could stand side by side with anime. Now at the time most anime hadn’t reached the main stream and in the US there was really only one place to watch anime. Avatar did become one of my favorite shows but it was hard to compete with one of my other favorite shows, especially when Optimus prime did the promos to hype it up. (insert clip). Yeah so Dragon ball Z was the business then and is one of 3 anime that I am eager to tackle on this show yet it also brings equal trepidation because of how expansive it is and how special it is to me.

But enough about dragon ball, I first walked into avatar with caution because based on my friends recommendation it had to deliver big in order to live up to his recommendation. And I must say that I was not disappointed. The characters were believable, the fights were not just for show because each battle served a purpose and the world felt lived in. However being compared to dragon ball, things did start off a bit slow for me but I quickly got over that. Looking back over the series, it is one of the most well paced and beautiful shows that I have ever seen.

I also must mention again that this was back in 2005 so if you wanted to watch a show you had to be intentional about it. Youtube was still in its infancy, iphones hadn’t released yet, instead of flat screens TVs still had butts and if you missed an episode you were out of luck for at least a week. So if you came from a big family like me that had only one tv, you might get lucky and be able to have someone record it on the VCR but there was no guarantee. You just had to make sure to turn it on Nickelodeon and catch it live.

Show creation

  • network/platform it appeared on

Speaking of Nick, as I mentioned at the top of the show Avatar premiered on Nickelodeon. This, along with cartoon network, was the epicenter of animated content. When watching you could expect to see such shows as Danny Phantom, Fairly OddParents, Jimmy Neutron, Invader Zim, As Told by Ginger and more. However as an action oriented show, the animation in avatar stood out.

  • animation studio

The nicktoons animation studio that created Avatar was built in 1998. When speaking of this new establishment the then president of Film and TV Entertainment for Nickelodeon, Albie Hetch said that he wanted to create a “playful, inspirational and cutting-edge lab which will hopefully give birth to the next generation of cartoon classics” An ambitious goal for sure but with hit shows like Avatar and Spongebob under their belt, the studio seemed to have a great talent for hiring the right people.

  • creators I mentioned at the top of the show that Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko were the original creators of Avatar. Between the 2 of them, they have worked on projects such as King of the hill, Family guy, Invader Zim and of course Avatar: The legend of Korra. In September 2018 it was announced that they both would partner with netflix as executive producers on a live action series based on Avatar. However in August of 2020 they announced their departure from the live action adaptation due to creative differences. In a blog post from DiMartino he states “whatever version ends up on-screen, it will not be what Bryan and I had envisioned or intended to make.” in another statement he went on to say “we Came to the belief that we would not be able to meaningfully guide the direction of the series.” I’m sure that more details about the split will emerge in due time but for now, we can only hope that the netflix adaptation of Avatar doesn’t end up like the companies rendition of Death Note. (in a whisper) Spoiler alert it was horrible and was not faithful to the source material at all. Do yourself a favor and never watch it.

As a side-note it was my love for deathnote that retroactively peaked my interest in sherlock holmes. I’m a sucker for a good mystery and good writing.

  • writers

Speaking of writers, I wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the writers and that worked on avatar. Writers such as Aaron Ehasz, John O’Bryan and Elizabeth Welch Ehasz have collectively worked on shows such as mission hill, Futurama The Dragon Prince Motor City and Ben Ten. Lastly I’d like to highlight Sifu Kisu. If you like the fight scenes in Avatar then you have Sifu Kisu to thank for that. He is a fighting instructor from morocco and is known for his extensive knowledge and abilities with various styles of martial arts. When developing the fighting styles for the bending arts he based them all on real fighting styles. Water bending is based on Tai Chi for its fluidity, and adaptability. Earth bending is based on Hung Gar and took inspiration from the styles low stances, rooted in power. Fire bending is formed from the Northern Shaolin system for its dynamic footwork and arrow-like forward attacking techniques and finally there is air bending, which is formed from Ba Gua. It utilizes light circle walking techniques as the fighter rotates their center in order to counteract resistance and attack.

Characters (main cast and up to 2 major villians)

  • Aang

The character that masterfully puts the air bending style on display is none other than our title character and only air bender Aang. Ang was an air nomad born during the century long conflict known as the hundred year war. He is a 12 year old pacifist who is also the Avatar. As the avatar, he will be able to master all 4 elements but this title also comes with an expectation to bring peace to the world. Voiced by Zach Tyler who is also known for his work as Pablo on the Backyardagins he brings life to the character. As a child burdened with this responsibility he runs away only to be frozen in time for 100 years. After waking he has to come to grips with his responsibility as the avatar and his desire to grow as a normal kid. And while his air bending skills are great, he has a lot to learn before he’s ready to save anyone.

  • Katara

Katara is a waterbending master, born in the southern water tribe. She along with her brother Sokka discover the Avatar frozen in ice. At only the age of 14, she is strong-willed and independent. These character traits come mostly from losing her mother to the fire nation at a young age and watching her father leave for war. Despite being the younger sister, she often acts as a mother figure to Sokka and the others that journey with her. More than anyone else she connects to Aang on a personal level as they navigate their desire to save the world and their budding teenage romance. Voiced by Mae Whiteman, you may know her as batgirl from DC super hero girls or Ann Veal from Arrested Development.

  • Sokka

As for Sokka, I just mentioned that he is the older brother of Katara but prior to their departure of the southern water tribe he was the villages chief warrior. Voiced by Jack De Sena, known for his work on All that from 2000-2005 and Netflix’s The Dragon Prince. The title of warrior was a title given to Sokka when his father and the other tribe members, went off to war. While he means well, he starts his journey as a bumbling and incompetent fighter and acts as the comic relief for much of the show. However despite being a non-bender Sokka becomes the main strategist for the group. Over time his leadership and combat skills improved as he became an indispensable member of team Avatar.

  • Toph

In addition to Katara and Sokka we have other member to join the team like Toph Beifong. Voiced by Michaela Jill Murphy, is an earthbending master and the most powerful Earthbender of her time. Born blind, her family constantly coddled her and underestimated her abilities. Her earth bending abilities allowed her to “see” any vibrations that moved through the ground. This makes her uncomfortable when flying on Aangs animal side kick Appa or on unstable surfaces like sand. However, even with her brash personality and initial uninterest in training Aang, she chose to leave her old life behind to train the avatar and travel the world

  • animal sidekicks

Rounding out team Avatar we have our animal sidekicks. We have mommo who is a winged lemur. He is loyal to his companions and is one of the few known winged lemurs living at the time. Finally rounding out our early heros we have the real MVP Appa. Appa is a sky bison that shares a strong bond with Aang. He is most known for his ability to fly despite his large size. Its seems impossible but it is a feat that is made possible through air bending. Beyond his use as the teams main transportation his pure strength, resilience and fighting ability has saved the team on more than one occasion. It is pretty clear that the team would not have been able to save the world without him.

  • Zuko

Now moving on to the villians and I use that word lightly because many of the characters in this show are complex and are only seen as villians because their actions, at least for the moment, oppose Aang and the others. There are only a handful of people in the show that I would characterize as straight up villainous.

With that in mind I’d like to start with prince Zuko. Voiced by Dante Basco, known for his work on Star wars rebels, Generator Rex, as Marco in Moesha, and my personal favorite Rufio in the 1991 movie Hook. ( insert rufio clip) Zuko is a firebending master with a troubled past. Exiled by his father, Fire Lord Osai, he has been given the impossible task of tracking down and capturing the missing avatar. As one to the most complex characters he spends the series struggling with his want to prove himself to his dad and his need for a loving family. He is often accompanied by his uncle General Iroh who acts as his conscience (insert jiminy cricket clip)

  • Uncle

Uncle Iroh is the elder brother of Fire Lord Osai and unlike Osai and many others from the fire nation, he is wise, easy-going and quite spiritual. Known world wide for his bending abilities he has earned the honorary title of “The Dragon of the West”. After the death of his son, Iroh began to see the banished Zuko as his own son rather than his nephew. A constant source of wisdom and instruction to all he connected with Uncle is truly a guiding light to the main characters of the story. Originally voiced by Mako Iwaamatsu, also known for his work as Aku from Samurai Jack, the voice actor was succeeded by Greg Baldwin for season three after his untimely passing.

  • Fire Lord Osai

Finally we will end our cast of characters with the Fire Lord himself Osai. A truly menacing and evil figure in the Avatar world, his presence can be felt in every arc. The younger brother of Uncle Iroh, he convinced the previous fire lord to name him the successor as he continued the the fire nations campaign to rule the world

It also helps that he was voiced by the Legendary Mark Hamill, who is know most as Luke Skywalker from the star wars series, the Joker from Batman the animated series, master Eraqus from the Kingdom Hearts series and Dictatious from Netflix’s Troll hunters seires. I could go on for days listing his accolades but this small list just shows what range he has as a performer.

Hook Shot

Now we have come to the portion of the show that I like to call the Hook Shot. This is where I watch the first 3-5 episodes of the show at hand and if I’m hooked then I think that you should give it a shot. So Avatar is one of my favorite tv shows of all time so I absolutely recommend it and the first 5 episodes really do a great job of establishing the main cast as lovable characters that you want to root for.

The first few episodes does an amazing job of setting the stage for the show. It establishs Zuko as a force to be reckoned with, Sokka as a weak yet brave warrior, katara as a strong and fast learning bender, Aang as a kind hearted novice and shows the fierceness of the avatar state. However I believe the most engaging thing that was established was the importance Cabbages. (Insert clip)

Naw just kidding about the cabbages… Kinda. As we begin our journey, we see just how big the world is. We start at the south pole, then go to air temple, then kyoshi Island and the Earth Kingdom all within the first 5 episodes. It is made abundantly clear that they main characters have a long journey ahead. And if I haven’t made it clear thus far I absolutely love this show and couldn’t recommend it enough.

Black light

Now before I let you go; I want to take you to the part of the show that I call the “Black light”. Here I scour the farthest darkest corners of the internet to showcase piece of work or artist that has piqued my interest. Now I want to point you guys to an artist that I have been following for about 6 years, maybe more. Her name is Geneva and her instagram is at gdbee and she does the most amazing illustrations, particularly on women of color. Every drawing and painting I see makes me feel as if I am being drawn into a living, breathing fantasy world. I am not sure if she is open for commisions but she has done an illustration of my family in the past that I hold near and dear to my heart. I have also supported her on kickstarter as I have supported her enamel pins which are amazing. So if you want to be inspired by a woman of color that can pull you into a fantasy world with her work the please check out Geneve on instagram at gdbee.

Trivia

Now moving on to trivia. As always, the trivia will consist of one question that directly relates to the episode and one unrelated fan question. Remember you can submit fan question by emailing me at Toonloredr@gmail.com .The first people who respond with the correct answer to the trivia on twitter may get a shout out in the next episode. So here goes:

  • Show question: which fighting style did NOT influence a bending martial art?
  • A. Tai chi
  • B. Mui thai
  • C. Hung Gar
  • D. Ba Gua
  • Fan question: in honor of Zazh Tyler’s previous role on the backyardigans, which was NOT a character on the Nickelodeon show?
  • A. Uniqua
  • B. Tyrone
  • C. Pablo
  • D. Sharkiesha

Outro

This has been Toon Lore Done Right and don’t forget to like share, review, comment and subscribe. I can’t wait to see what new countries and people we can reach. If you would like to submit a trivia question please send an email to toonloredr@gmail.com with the subject line TLDR Trivia. Please give a multiple choice question and note the correct answer. Also feel free to leave your twitter or instagram handles in your message. You can make suggestions on future episodes by joining the facebook page at facebook.com/toonlore or letting me know what you thing by following me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr. I also hope that you liked some of the new music selections. I am working with a trusted friend to bring some updated original music to the show. So until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation, its been real.

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Kobe Day transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right transcripts

Podcast body

What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a podcast where I take a moment to give you the quick history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. You can call me David Devine Hughes, and I’m kind of student of all things animation. You can find me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr and on facebook at facebook.com/toonlore. As always, I want to give a thank to everyone who has been listening to and sharing the podcast, and I am happy to say that the podcast has blasted passed 600 listens!

This episode will be a little bit different than my other shows. Today I will take a bit of time to talk about some current events. Now I don’t typically cover news on this show but i believe that this topic is relevant particularly for long time listeners. So for those of you who have been with Toon Lore Done Right from the beginning, you will know that my second episode covered Dear Basketball. If you have not been with the show that long I’ll give you a bit of context. Dear Basketball is an oscar award winning short film by Kobe Bryant, artist Glen Keane and composer John Williams. The animated short basically showed the relationship between Kobe and the game of basketball.

Around the time of the oscars this year in 2020, many of us drew parallels with Bryant and another former athlete Matthew Cherry for his animated short film Hair Love. Many were excited to see how things would play out but on January 26 Bryant one of his daughters and 7 other people tragically died in helicopter accident.

For many people around the world Bryant was a major figure in their lives. While not a huge basketball fan, my awareness of him peaked on the release of Dear Basketball. I and others were looking forward to seeing the amazing things that he could accomplish on this second phase of his adult life.

The depths of his impact cannot be overstated, which brings us to today. At the time of this recording it is August 24th 2020 and Orange county has officially declared this Kobe Bryant Day. In an article about the 18-time All-star, the New York Post states, quote “Orange County’s Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to make official the tribute to the late Bryant, who was one of nine to perish in a helicopter crash in January. Bryant wore numbers 8 and 24 during his prolific 20 year NBA career, which is why the date August 24th was chosen”.

So again, Toon Lore Done Right is not a news show but I felt it appropriate to update you all on these things. I still have plans to go in deeper with Dear Basketball but for now I will leave you with this quote from Kobe Bryant himself that I feel we all can take to heart. “Everything negative – pressures, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.”

Outro

I bring you this quote, in this moment of reverence and during this time of lament to highlight a great man and the impact that he has had on the lives of so many.

So until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation, its been real.

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Kipo transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right Episode 09

  • Cold open 
  • Give a story driven narrative intro.  Start the intro by setting the scene and end by asking the question “what makes Kipo unique?”  
  • You are lost, alone and afraid. Surrounded by the unknown with your path to home blocked there is only one choice ahead of you. Move forward now to reconnect with your family.  Powered by hope, driven by kindness and connected by love you will brave the wilderness, tame beasts, and gain allies to find your way home.   
  • This is Toon Lore Done right and you’ve just been invited to the wonderful world of Kipo and the age of wonder beasts. 
  • Intro to the podcast 
  • What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a podcast where I take a moment to give you the quick history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. You can call me David Devine Hughes, and I’m kind of student of all things animation.  You can find me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr and on facebook at facebook.com/toonlore. 
  • As always, I want to give a thank to everyone who has been listening to and sharing the podcast, since the last episode on Voltron, the show has reached more than 500 downloads! This is a bit of a surreal moment for me because doing the podcast brings me real joy and I am happy to share with you all.  Also, Trivia! Be sure to participate and send your answers to me on twitter. As always the trivia will come at the end of the show and I have some shout outs waiting for yall when you engage. 
  • As we start the show, I want to give a special shout out to my wife and host of the Loose Change podcast Deanna for suggesting this weeks show, Kipo and the age of wonderbeasts 
  • Intro to the show (re-write this in your voice) 
  • After spending her entire life living in an underground burrow, a young girl named Kipo is thrust into an adventure on the surface of a fantastical post-apocalyptic Earth where humanoid animals called Mutes rule. She joins a ragtag group of survivors as they embark on a journey through a vibrant wonderland where everything that is trying to kill them is downright adorable.  
  • Seasons 1 and 2 of Kipo are on netflix now.  So after you finish listening to me, go check it out. 
  • My connection to the show/spoiler free synopsis 
  • I was first made aware of the show when a friend suggested it to me. but because of my Disney plus backlog, it took me a while to get around to it. I didn’t start watching until season 2 came out, but I knew that the show was something special very early on. I started and finished it in a matter of days because the story is tight, the character development is great and most of all the blackness on display is dope.  I love how the show normalizes people of color, I’ll talk more in depth about the characters in a bit but unlike many shows where people of color are prominent, Kipo wastes no time to explain their blackness.  There are no moments when black characters have to address their blackness or justify being prominent figures. They could just say “I am here and I am seen.”  
  • This not only had an impact on me but it had an impact on my young daughter as well.  When characters such as Wolf show up she would come to me and say “Look daddy its me on tv”  As a family we were captivated by Kipos drive to find her home, then her struggle to connect with new friends then ultimately her ability to see the best in all people. It was clear that the creators put a lot of time and effort in building this world and the characters that live in it.  
  • The shows creation 
  • Creators 
  • In an interview with Melanin animated, the hosts Kyla and Imani, spoke with 3 major players in the creation of Kipo.  Rad Sechrist: the creator and executive producer, Chris Copeland director of 4 episodes of season 1 and Chibu Okere: Prop and character designer. 
  • When asked about the asthetic style of Kipo, Sechrist told Melanin animated that the art style was heavily influenced by Nico Marlet, the character designer for the Kung Fu Panda films and the Manga and anime Tekkon Konkreet.  Kung Fu Panda is pretty main stream so most of you will already be familiar with it and its art style.  However Tekkon Kinkreet is a little more niche.  I recall watching the film years ago while I was still in university and I remember that it was produces by the same people that brought us the animatrix.  But before you go and watch the full movie, you will see some style similarities between it and Kipo but the subject matter is quite different.  So be mindful about letting your younger kids watch it.   
  • Further they were asked about the diversity of the their staff having 2 black directors and 2 black character designers and Sechrist responded by saying “I don’t think our show is diverse, I think that if you just looked at the numbers by population in the US, its really what any show staff should look like.” In elaborating further, commenting on Kipos dad being black Copeland chimed in by saying “I wanted to deconstruct the awkwardness.  Her dad is black and that’s just it. We don’t need to explain anything further than that. What we are asking for is normalcy” He went on to mention that it also helped that Sterling K. Brown was interested in voicing the role as well. So even though Kipo was already designed to be Korean before Brown was casted, Kipos dad is unapologetically and unquestionably black. 
  • Insert the “Im black yall” meme 
  • Studio MIR (mention voltron): hehe, Moving on, I should also mention that much of the animation was outsourced to Studio MIR in South Korea. For those of you who listened to my Voltron episode from last time, you will already know that this studio was founded in 2010 and has worked on projects like: The Legend of Korra, The Boondocks, Young Justice: Outsiders and more 
  • Music 
  • With that in mind, you know that the animation in Kipo will be great but I wasn’t expecting for the music to be this good as well. The music in Kipo is great and really flows well with the story and characters.  With genres that span from classical to rock to hip hop there is a song in here for nearly everyone.  There is even a lofi hiphop song about cheese, yes you heard that right, there is a song about cheese and it low key thumps. Also in episode 5 of the show a few characters do a rap about the origin of the universe by 2 Wolf Mutes of the Newton clan.  One is named Good Billions and the other Bad Billions, the latter of which is voiced by the Gza. The rap starts off like this: 
  • All life started, with the big bang | An explosion so great, from which we all sprang | The universe dispersed masstraversing space as time passed space expanding mad fast |  Stars made of light and gas | the cosmos with billions of stars, gleaming |these are the events that brought us wolves into being 
  • Newton, Newton |Now you know our name |and you know we trained | to wax in poetic ways | with our superior brains | Evolutions changed | our instincts remain | to wax in poetic ways | with superior brains 
  •  My cadence is a little bit different than what you will see in the show but that’s because they have the officially licensed music. Also as a subtle tribute to the Wu Tang Clan, the 2 aforementioned leaders of the Newton wolves are likely descendants of the previous alpha male named Old Dirty Billions or ODB.  
  • In an article by Shamus Kelley on Denofgeek.com he states “With music being such a key part of the show it might surprise you to know that it wasn’t actually part of the original pitch when creator Rad Secrhist brought the idea to dreamworks.” He goes on to say “Co-Showrunner Bill Wolkoff remembers that the studio encouraged the music to be unique with the world of Kipo basically being frozen in time… [with the Mutes] Co-opting human society [to] reflect the world of today”.   
  • If you are interested in hearing more of the music once you have finished watching the show then you can find the shows soundtrack on spotify. 
  • https://www.denofgeek.com/tv/kipo-and-the-age-of-wonderbeasts-music/ 
  • Characters 
  • Now we know that the music is great and the animation is awesome but lets dive into the characters.  We know that the creators were invested in making belivable characters while normalizing diversity and I must say that the show delivers. 
  • Staring with our title character, Kipo Oak who is voice by Karen Fukuhara known for her roles in She-Ra, Suicide Squad and Craig of the Creek.  She is a 12 year old girl with pink skin, hair and eyes.  Before the events of the show she lived in a burrow underground like most other humans in the world. Kipo is friendly, optimistic and a born leader.  To the bewilderment of others she always finds a way to see the goodness in others and has the ability to soften the hearts of almost everyone she meets.  In addition to her unusual optimism Kipo is wildly intelligent.  She is capable of quick thought in stressful situations and has an in depth knowledge of astronomy and is adept at solving complex mathematic equations.  However her book smarts don’t always prepare her for the real world and that’s where her new friends come in.  
  • Wolf, voiced by Sydney Mikayla, is the first human that Kipo meets, once she is on the surface separated from her family and friends. As time passes Kipo and wolf ultimately become best friends. Not much is known about Wolfs past in season 1 of the show and we still don’t exactly know how old she is or even her real name.  One of my favorite aspects of Kipo and Wolfs relationship is the nick names that Kipo gives her.  She calls her Tiny, Jollene and my personal favorite, Wolfatha Christie the Fourth. Wolf is intelligent, agile, a great battle strategist but most of all she is a survivor. Before meeting Kipo she was cold and distrustful but over the course of the show she learned to open up and to trust others.  She quickly became my favorite character and I am glad to know that a spinoff movie for her is in the works.  
  • Ben and Dave are 2 peas in a pod.  Benson is a teenage human male who lives on the surface and Dave is his longtime best friend who is a Mute.  They are both scavengers and are as a team they are incredibly cunning and resourceful.  Despite living on the surface for so long they both are incredibly upbeat and fun loving.  They love music and often dream to be DJs. Early in season 1 Benson also has a great character moment with kipo in an amusement park and not to spoil things, the creators were very intentional about building depth into the characters. As a Mute, Dave stands out a bit, voiced by Deon Cole, Dave molts to evolve into his next stages of life.  However instead of being time based, these changes seem to be stress induced and he has little control over it. He is seemingly immortal and in the span of one episode can change from infant to elderly.   
  • Lio Oak is Kipos dad and early on all we know about him is that, he separated Kipo from the rest of the burrow to protect her and that he is super intelligent.  He is a single father and has essentially raised Kipo alone and it is clear that he loves her with his whole heart and would do anything for her.  Oh and like I mentioned before, Lio Oak is voice by Sterling K. Brown, known for his work in Frozen 2, The black Panther and This is Us. 
  • Then we move on to our main villain Scarlemagne. Voiced by Dan Stevens, you may know him as the Beast from Disneys live action remake of beauty and the beast.  Scarlemagne is a Mandrill Mute that is driven to rule as the king of the mutes while forcing humanity into a lifetime of servitude.  He expects to accomplish this by his ability to mind control others. His design and attire is heavily inspired by the Rococo period of classical art and has a love for classical music.  He is flamboyant, imposing and I must say that his introduction in the show may be one of my favorite villain introductions of all time.  
  • Hook Shot 
  • Now we have come to the portion of the show that I like to call the Hook Shot.  This is where I watch the first 3-5 episodes of the show at hand and if I’m hooked then I think that you should give it a shot.  If you couldn’t feel it by this point in the episode I will be clear, I really enjoyed watching kipo.  Especially when I got the chance to watch it with my young daughter.  If you have been with the Toon Lore Done Right for any amount of time you have heard me say this before but I don’t think that it can be said enough, REPRESENTATION MATTERS! Seeing characters of color on screen makes such a difference in her life.  With that being said, the first episode of Kipo, to me started a bit slow but it quickly picks up after that.  The world and the charters always leave me asking for more.  The first few episodes revolve around Kipo acclimating to the new world while trying to find her family and I was pleasantly surprised when a story point would not unravel  as I expected. During her journey she also comes across a clan of Mutes that call themselves the Timbercats.  They are humanoid cats that carry axes and will chop anything in their path.  I bring them up because one of my favorite voice actors steve blum voices their leader.  For those who don’t know Steve Blum has voice characters in American media like Wolverine, Starscream, Sub Zero and heat blast from the ben ten series.  However I think he is most known for voicing characters in anime like The doctor in Tekkonkinkreet, Spike from Cowboy Bebop, Leeron from Gurren Lagann and Orochimaru from Naruto 
  • Black light 
  • Now before I let you go; I want to take you to the part of the show that I call the “Black light”. Here I scour the farthest darkest corners of the internet to showcase piece of work or artist that has piqued my interest.  Today I’m going to shine a light the podcast that I mentioned earlier in the show, Melinin animated.  The podcast is fairly new and the hosts give their raw thoughts on animation, specifically African American females.  And while their podcast may be newish their Instagram is kinda poppin.  They post character highlights and stories that are black centric.  So if you like Toon Lore Done Right then you may enjoy their content.  If nothing else please check out their interview with the creators of Kipo.  
  • Trivia 
  • Now moving on to trivia. As always, the trivia will consist of one question that directly relates to the episode and one fan question.  Remember you can submit fan question by emailing me at Toonloredr@gmail.com The first  people who respond with the correct answer to the trivia on twitter may get a shout out in the next episode.  So here goes 
  • Show question:  What is the animation studio that produced Kipo? 
  • A. Studio MIR 
  • B.  New age animation 
  • C. Studio Ghibli 
  • D.  Toon City 
  • Fan question: Which was NOT a character on the super hero team Action League Now? 
  • A. The Flesh 
  • B. Thundergirl 
  • C. Slippery Swimmer 
  • D. Melt man 
  • Remember to get a special shout out on my next episode all you have to do tweet at me at toonloreDR with the correct answers. Just leave the episode name and the answers. I will call out the top 3 responses.    
  • Outro 
  • This has been Toon Lore Done Right and don’t forget to like share, review, comment and subscribe. I can’t wait to see what new countries and people we can reach.  If you would like to submit a trivia question please send an email to toonloredr@gmail.com with the subject line TLDR Trivia.  Please give a multiple choice question and note the correct answer. Also feel free to leave your twitter or instagram handles in your message. You can make suggestions on future episodes by joining the facebook page at facebook.com/toonlore or letting me know what you thing by following me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr. So until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation, its been real. 
Posted in anime, Characters, Television | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Voltron Show transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right episode 8

  • Intro the podcast 
  • What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a podcast where I take a moment to give you the quick history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. You can call me Dave, and I’m kind of student of animation history.  You can find me on facebook at facebook.com/toonlore and follow me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr. 
  • As always, I want to give a thank to everyone who has been listening to and sharing the podcast.  I really can’t thank you guys enough for supporting my labor of love.  Things continue to be interesting as we adjust to life during COVID but yall have stuck with me and I am grateful for it.  I would also want to take this time to give a shout out to the people that nailed the trivia from last time buuuuut nobody answered yet.  So I’m going to make twitter the sole place to respond to the trivia.  It may make it a little bit less confusing. From now on you will just need tweet @toonloredr with the episode title and the answers. 
  • With that being said, today I have a real treat for you because I’m going to give you the TLDR on one a fairly recent show that can be found on Netflix.  I need to give a special shout out to Melvin Hughes, for suggesting this episode. you can follow him on twitch at xblackxdestrox if you want to see some Call of duty action and get some funny commentary along the way. Again, I want to thank him for suggesting the 2016 animated series Voltron: Legendary Defender. So let’s get into the quick history. 
  • Intro the show/Quick history 
  • Give brief overview of the show maybe read the synopsis from fandom 
  • So jumping straight in, I have to mention that Voltron is an intellectual property that has survived many decades, remasters and reboots.  While I will briefly touch on the shows of the past, my main focus will be on this latest release.  
  • Voltron: Legendary Defender is a Netflix original tv series produced by DreamWorks Animation and World Events Productions, while being animated by Studio Mir in South Korea. The show uses a combination of 2-d animation and CG animation to great effect. It is based on the original American TV show, Voltron: Defender of the Universe, released in 1984, which drew its material from  Japanese anime like: Beast King GoLion, released in 1981. This latest outing marks the fourth major television release of the Voltron franchise and first to be a web-exclusive to Netflix. Since its initial release in 2016, the series has released eight seasons, with the final season being released on December 14, 2018. In total, the series has accumulated aired 78 episodes. 
  • The Shows creation 
  • Series history/ show creation 
  • As I briefly mentioned in my intro, Legendary Defender is not the first Voltron animated series. While I will not go into much detail about the other shows, I will name them for some context. We have Voltron: Defender of the Universe, Voltron Vehicle Force, Voltron: Fleet of Doom, Voltron: The Third Dimension and Voltron force.  While the narrative of Legendary Defender is completely separate from all other Voltron incarnations, there are some nods to the original shows in this series.  
  • Legendary defender was created as a part of its multi-year agreement with DreamWorks animation.  This deal was originally struck in 2015 and to date has produced a number of shows based on existing IP and completely original ideas.  These shows include but are not limited to: The adventures of Puss in Boots, Dinotrux, Dragons Race to the Edge, Trollhunters, from the mind of master storyteller Guilllmo Del Toro and one of my new favorite shows Kipo and the Age of wonder beasts. 
  • Season structure 
  • This deal with Netflix seems to have given Dreamworks the freedom to make the shows that they want to make while keeping things unique.  One unique aspect of the show and its production is the number of episodes per season.  Unlike in traditional media when there are a certain number of episodes needed per season, shows on Netflix are allowed to experiment with this to fit the needs of their show.  There are 8 seasons for the show and the number of episodes fits the needs of the story.  For example, Seasons 1, 2, 7 and 8 are 13 episodes while seasons 3 and 6 are 7 episodes and right in the middle seasons 4 and 5 are 6 episodes.  Now that I am taking a look at the numbers, the shows beginning mirrors its end.  This is a remarkable story telling device that really fits Legendary Defender well.  
  • Show synopsis (spoiler free- maybe just talk about the first major arch) 
  • Speaking of the story, I would like to give you my impression of things as well. I don’t want to give any spoilers so I will just give a synopsis.  Our journey begins on Earth as our main characters witness an alien ship crash land nearby.  After going to investigate, they find themselves thrusted into outer space in the middle of a galactic war.  With nowhere else to turn their rag tag team learns to pilot the legendary weapon Voltron to bring peace to the known universe. 
  • Writers (Avatar connection) 
  • The characters, their development and the animation are great.  And when I investigated it, it should come as no surprise that this is the case.  Behind the scenes on Voltron you have talent such as Show runners Lauren Montgomery Joaquim Dos Santos, writers like Tim Hedrick and May Chan who all worked on the amazing Avatar series.  I should also mention that much of the animation was outsourced to Studio MIR in South Korea.  This studio was founded in 2010 and has worked on projects like: The Legend of Korra, The Boondocks, Young Justice: Outsiders and one of my new favorite sows Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts. 
  • Characters (The characters include…) 
  • Human 
  • The main cast consists of a combination of human and alien characters.  Beginning with the pilots of Voltron or Paladins as they are called, we have: 
  • Shiro- the eldest of the human characters and the Defacto leader. He is flawed in many ways, but he trusts in the ability and courage of his team more than anything. As the leader he becomes the pilot of the Black lion 
  • Next, we have Keith, he is a hot head who has a hard time trusting people.  His connection with Shiro affords him the place as Voltrons right hand and pilot of the Red lion 
  • Following Keith, we have Lance.  He is a self-proclaimed ladies’ man, who is cocky confrontational and arrogant at times.  However, when the chips are down, he has been known to give wise words to his team.  His relationship with Keith starts off rocky but grows into a near unbreakable bond. In the story we see that his Latino roots helps to give him a strong sense of family and trust is a big deal to him. 
  • Hunk on the other hand is, on paper, the exact opposite of what you would want in a pilot. He is constantly scared, rarely wants to battle anyone and would rather defend than go on the offensive.  However, it is his ability to fight through his fear that has saved the Voltron squad on more than one occasion.  His unwavering faith in his comrades and the good in all sentient life in the universe makes him the perfect paladin of the yellow lion.  
  • Finally, to close out the we have Pidge.  Pidge is a genius who embraces space travel to look for close family members that were taken captive by aliens. Pidges connection to technology and zeal to find family gives the green lion the connection it needs for Pidge to become its paladin. 
  • Non-human 
  • Now on to the non-human characters, we will start with Princess Allura 
  • An alien from the planet Altea, she is the last surviving member of the Altean royal family.  She uses her magic and knowledge of Voltrons history to guide the paladins to defend the universe.  Although she is kind and loving, there is a deep seeded hatred in her heart for a race of beings called the Galra.  This species betrayed her father King Alfor, the creator of Voltron, while destroying her home planet and her people in the process. 
  • Then we have Coran who, along with Allura, is the only surviving Altean.  He was tasked by king Alfor to be a guardian to Allura.  Throughout the show he is mainly the comic relief, even some of his more serious moments are played up for laughs.  But his knowledge of Altean history and his legitimate concern for the well-being of his team, makes him a valuable part of the Voltron squad. 
  • Now I will talk of 2 major villains for the series starting with Emperor Zarkon. He is the ruthless ruler of the Galra empire and once friend to king Altor.  He is on a relentless search for the  Voltron lions as he seeks to become the supreme ruler.  He has conquered much of the universe already but he needs Voltron to solidify his dominance.  The Voltron lions are seen as the most powerful weapons in the universe so if he has them in his possession then nothing and no one will be able to oppose him.   
  • Finally we have Hagar. Not much is known about her in the first few seasons but she is a master of dark magic as she serves the Galra empire.  She is the chief adviser of emperor Zarkon and although her methods of warfare are unorthodox, it is clear that she is a force to be reckoned with.  
  • Hook shot 
  • Now we have come to the portion of the show that I like to call the Hook Shot.  This is where I watch the first 3-5 episodes of the show at hand and if I’m hooked then I think that you should give it a shot. 
  • With Voltron, I have recently watched the entire series and I enjoyed the show overall, however I must say that it starts off a bit slow.  The first few episodes do give us amazing set pieces, some decent action and locations. But there were some story beats that just made the plot stumble a bit for me.  I have 2 examples that I want to share with you, first is Pidge.  I mentioned earlier the Pidge is a tech genius and that informs a lot of what we see.  However there is a point early on where Pidges technological genius allows the team to hack into alien technology a bit too easily.  It isn’t really explained until like season 4 or 5 exactly why Pidge is that good, we just have to accept it.  Also all of the human characters are whisked away to an alien planet in an instant but none of them really show a longing for home until the 3rd or 4th episode.  Especially since most of the team are teenagers, I expected something much different.  
  • As for the things that I did like, the teams motivations to pilot Voltron were clear.  There was an established sense of urgency with Zarkons general hot on their tails. I must also mention that the mix of 2-d and 3d elements are great and when Voltron assembles for the first time it is dope.  If you are a fan of the original series then you won’t be disappointed with this.   
  • So when it comes to my recommendation, I will just say this.  If you are okay with stories that have a slow start but strong finish or if you are confident in the writing chops of those who worked on the Avatar series then I would definitely recommend Voltron to you.  However on the flip side if you want a show that jumps straight into the intrigue then one may be a little rough for you to dive into.  

  • Now before I let you go; I want to take you to the part of the show that I call the “Black light”. Here I scour the farthest darkest corners of the internet to showcase piece of work or artist that has piqued my interest.  Today I’m going to shine a light on Illustrator Mike Toney that’s T-O-N-E-Y.  You can find him on Instagram at Miketoneydesign and you can see his website at shop.miketoney.com.  Some time ago I found him on kickstarter and backed his project called “Black Anime: Lost Children of the Diaspora”.  This is an art book comprised of 94 pages of original black anime content and I would love if you gave it a shot.  Maybe you will enjoy it as much as I did. 
  •   
  • Trivia 
  • Now moving on to trivia. As always, the trivia will consist of one question that directly relates to the episode and one fan question.  Remember you can submit fan question by emailing me at Toonloredr@gmail.com The first 3 people who respond with the correct answer to the trivia on twitter will get a shout out. So here goes 
  • Show Question: Which one of these characters is NOT a paladin of voltron 
  • a. Haggar 
  • b. Keith 
  • c. Pidge 
  • d. Shiro 
  • Now on to the Fan Question: What 2 words combine to make cartoon networks Toonami? 
  • a. Anime and cartoon 
  • b. Tsunami and cartoon 
  • c. Cartoon and Kami 
  • d. Nami and cartoon 
  • Remember to get a special shout out on my next episode all you have to do tweet at me at toonloreDR with the correct answers. Just leave the episode name and the answers. I will call out the top 3 responses.   
  • Outro 
  • This has been Toon Lore Done Right and don’t forget to like share, review, comment and subscribe. I can’t wait to see what new countries and people we can reach.  If you would like to submit a trivia question please send an email to toonloredr@gmail.com with the subject line TLDR Trivia.  Please give a multiple choice question and note the correct answer. Also feel free to leave your twitter or instagram handles in your message. You can make suggestions on future episodes by joining the facebook page at facebook.com/toonlore or letting me know what you thing by following me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr. So until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation, its been real. 
Posted in anime, Television | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Trolls World tour… almost good

During quarantine I’ve actually been quite busy and it seems that I have only just now been able to watch Trolls World tour. I liked the first movie a great deal and its a household favorite for my kids. So when Trolls 2 was released, I was excited to see it. Now that I have, I’ve got some thoughts to share on the journey that our heroes Poppy and Branch go on to stop queen Barb.

Overall the the movie is enjoyable. It was a fun and colorful ride much like the first film. In sequels there are a few directions it can take. Some sequels like John Wick 2 focus more on expanding a characters personal journey and other sequels like Star wars episode 6 expand the world/universe in which the characters live. Trolls does the latter and does so fairly well. It was cool to get introduced to the other types of trolls and hear music other than just the pop musice that we got from the first film.

As our main character journeyed throughout the world we come to realize a few things. Barb wants to “unite” the world by making everyone the same and in ancient times, there was an incedent that led all of the trolls to separate from one another. It all seems pretty straight forward until we reach to major plot twist. It turns out that the pop trolls (Poppys folk) tried to take over all of the music in the past. In fear of a hostile take over, the other clans of trolls seperated themselves and this is why the pop trolls didn’t know of their history. The previous king hid it from Poppy and the other trolls.

Now I’m going to be honest when I first saw this part and listened to the subsequent song about how the “winners make the scrap books of history” I thought that this movie was beginning to have some depth. As the movie progressed we continued with this theme of the pop trolls taking over and we retrospectively see this in how they wanted to convince the country trolls that their music was better. Continually building this tension worked great for the movie as Poppy and the others had to struggle with their role in history. However in the final act of the movie it all falls apart. It seems as if the writers/directors just decided that they wanted to just drop that theme. As Poppy stops queen Barb, there could have been a real moment where she took responsibility for all of the harm that the pop trolls caused and make everyone see that queen barb is not so different than the rest of them. But instead of doing this, she places all of the blame on queen Barb and villainizes her. There is also a moment when the world is attempting to accept that its okay to be different and all of their music is important. No one style of music should be paramount. Then Poppy starts a Pop song that is supposed to unite everyone. Using one style of music, especially a pop music, which was rightfully accused of stealing from the others, totally defeats the entire point of the movie.

The movies reluctance to have the pop trolls take any responsibility for the past along with the final pop song “uniting” everyone, is why I think that this movie was almost great. There are good moments and the movie has great elements but it really misses the mark at the end.

-David Devine Hughes

Posted in Full reviews, Movies | Leave a comment

Gargoyles Show transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right episode 7

  • Intro the podcast 
  • What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a bi-weekly podcast where I take a moment to give you a brief yet detailed history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. You can call me Dave, and I’m kind of student of animation history.  You can find me on facebook at facebook.com/toonlore and follow me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr. 
  • Before I get started, I want to give a special shout out to everyone who has been listening to and sharing the podcast.  I really can’t thank you guys enough for liking sharing and subscribing. I also want to give a shout out to my listeners in The Netherlands, Portugal, Brazil, the UK, Russia Venezuela and Ireland. I never thought that my podcast would be received outside of Hong Kong and the US but I’m so happy to see that its reaching so many people and places. 
  • Also for those of you who listened to my last episode “We don’t all black the same” that took a dive into my thoughts regarding the death of Geroge Floyd and the place of black creatives.  I mentioned that I will take some time to really find my own voice in the podcasting space.  It may take me a while to find the right format but I’m going to try a few new things at the end of this episode and I hope that yall will let me know if you like it.  
  •  With that being said, today I have a real treat for you because I’m going to give you the TLDR on one of my favorite shows of the 90’s.  I need to give a special shout out to Tim Hughes and Dustin Grofsick of Dustknight illustrations for suggesting Disney’s Gargolyles. 
  • Intro the show 
  • Gargoyles is an American animated tv series created by Greg wiesman and produced by Walt Disney Television. It originally aired from October 1994, to February 1997 with 3 seasons and a total of 78 episodes. The seasons are a bit weird though, seasons 1 and 3 have 13 episodes and season 2 has 52.  So its really like 6 seasons. The series features a species of nocturnal creatures known as gargoyles that live during the night and turn to stone during the day. After a magic curse left them frozen in stone for 1,00 years they were later reawakened in modern-day New York City. As they become familiar with their new home, they take on new roles as the city’s secret night-time protectors.[4] 
  • The Shows creation 
  • Like I just mentioned, Gargoyles was created by Greg Weisman who, at the time, was the Director of Series Development at Disney TV animation.  To date he has managed quite a few amazing tv shows including but not limited to: 
  • Young justice 
  • Max steel 
  • Kim possible 
  • The Spectacular Spiderman 
  • And he was the executive producer of Starwars Rebels 
  • As a visionary many original ideas and concepts for Gargoyles were retained for the official release.  While there were a few characters that had design changes, many of them stayed the same. In 1993 he recorded his pitch to Disney and its actually pretty cool to watch.  In the video you can see some original concept art, story beats and character designs.   The pitch runs about 4 minutes long and I have a link for it in the show notes. I think that it is interesting how, during the pitch, he pokes fun at how different in tone the show is from the lineup of other disney shows.   
  • Characters
  • The main character who also remained mostly intact from the original pitch is Goliath 
  • Goliath is the Stoic leader of the gargoyle clan we know.  Before the time skip his family was known as the Wyvern clan however post time skip they began to call themselves the Manhattan clan. 
  • Voiced by Keith David Goliath is known for his strength, honor, firm sense of morality and fierceness in battle.  He was named after the biblical giant goliath by the humans he originally protected making him the only gargoyle to have been named before their 1000-year sleep. 
  • Hudson, Lexington, Brooklyn, Broadway and Bronx also joined Goliath in his journeys and were original members of the Wyvern clan.  However, unlike goliath, they chose their own names after waking up in New York.
  • Hudson brings a real Danny Glover from lethal weapon vibe to the cast, as he is constantly too old for anything.  Brooklyn and the others are basically teenagers and their hijinx helps viewers relate more to their transition into their new world. For the first few episodes of the show we were made to believe that the formerly mentioned characters, who happen to all be males, are the only gargoyles to have survived to this time period.   
  • That is until we are introduced to Goliaths love interest and the one he calls his Angel of the night.  However we will come to know her as Demona 
  • Demona 
  • Before the 1,000 year slumber Demona was Goliaths love interest, most trusted adviser and fiercest warrior.   
  • I won’t spoil much of the story but in during my rewatch of the show I really saw how the writers were consistent with her as ambitions from the very beginning. Both the viewers and the gargoyles on screen are taken on a ride to understand her long and tragic history. Her hate for humanity is what drives her to move forward and this hate overshadows her intense love for Goliath and even her care for other gargoyles.  Demona is attracted to power and cunning but doesn’t understand what it means to sacrifice herself for others.  This proves to be her downfall many times throughout the series.   
  • In the present, she shows that her knowledge of both technology and magic makes her the most dangerous gargoyle in the world. She will do anything to attain her goal of eradicating humanity, even if it means killing her own kind or even teaming up with humans to do it. The human that she schemes with the most is David Xanatoas.  her plans have varying levels of success as she attempts to betray everyone she works with. 
  • David Xanatos  
  • David Xanatos, mostly referred to mostly by his last name, Xanatos is the Founder, owner and CEO of Xanatos Enterprises. He is a multi-billionaire and he is the person who ultimately revived Goliath and his clan from their 1000-year sleep. 
  • As one of the primary antagonists of the series, his plans are often devious and intricate.  To be honest, on more than one occasion, the true motive behind his plans have surprised even me.  I guess that even on my most recent watch, there were some details that I missed as a kid.  
  • He is ruthless and cunning but potentially his greatest strength is that he often learns from his mistakes and doesn’t hold grudges.  He usually does not seek revenge and will quickly throw water under the bridge to work with former or current enemies to accomplish a goal. This sort of win – win mentality makes him a dangerous foe. Also, his extreme intelligence has led him to create his own AI, armored suits and cyborg to assist him. In addition to this he is also a skilled fighter in his own right.  He has mastered Judo, advanced karate and more. 
  • With all of that in mind he does have 2 flaws that ultimately lead to the failure of his plans.  First there is his lack of trust with his main conspirator Demona. (Which is 100% justified) Their schemes often fail because they ultimately attempt to double cross one another. Secondly and most importantly he doesn’t truly understand the concept of family or love.  He trusts more in numbers than people and at one point even referred to the love for his fiancé as his greatest weakness.  To which Goliath responds “you are the only person who has ever regarded love as a weakness” 
  • Eliza Mazda 
  • Finally we have Eliza Mazda who is a strong female character with mixed heritage which was kinda a big deal back then.  and if I’m being honest, it would probably still be big deal now. She has an African American mother and a native American father but was born and raised in NYC. 
  • She is a Detective in New York’s 23rd precinct and was dubbed the only human member of the Manhattan gargoyle clan. Because of her long history of investigating Xanatos, Eliza first encounters Goliath soon after they are revived in new york.  She quickly gains his trust and the two bond almost immediately because of their desire to protect and serve.  To Goliath, Elisa represents all that is good in humanity and reinforces his will to protect them.  She also becomes more than just a friend to Golaith.  At one point she is turned into a Gargoyle by magic and this instant breaks the final barrier in their relationship as the both begin to struggle with how they feel toward one another.  Even without the aid of the gargoyles, Elisa shows herself as a strong, confident and capable cop. 
  • Naming off all of these characters really takes me back.  I remember seeing the show when it originally aired.  I remember thinking that this show was so much different than anything that I had seen on Disney.  I was captivated by the visuals and the darker tone.  It also handled complex themes that honestly still resonate with me today.  In season 1 there is an episode called “Long Way to Morning” that focuses on themes of family, brotherhood and even racism between humans and gargoyles.  During a flashback segment we see that a human friend of Hudson trusts him with his life, yet he still tells his daughter horror stories about the scary night creatures.  During a flashback segment, we see that a human friend of Hudson trusts him with his life, yet he still tells his daughter horror stories about the scary night creatures.  When confronted about this by Hudson the king simply says, “You’re being too sensitive”.  Now as a black man, I can’t count on 2 hands how many times I’ve heard that one in real life as people try to minimize their racist comments. Because of this, if the show was redone today, I’m sure that there would be much more than just one episode about this type of struggle.  Especially considering that the Elisa is a female detective, a minority and has a white partner. 
  • Disney didn’t have any other shows like it and it was kinda the dark horse of the Disney line up.  So just to put some things into perspective, some of the shows that aired next to Gargoyles were: 
  • TalesSpin 
  • Chip n dale: rescue rangers 
  • Goof Troop  
  • Bonkers 
  • Quack Pack 
  • And I can’t forget about Duck tales (awoo hoo!) 
  • The closest thing to gargoyles at the time was Dark Wing Duck but Dark wing was clearly more of a comedy.  It didn’t keep those darker themes and was clearly a spoof of batman. 
  • Speaking of batman, gargoyles is commonly compared to Batman: the animated series.  When I rewatched gargoyles on Disney Plus and I was reminded of those connections as well.  I particularly saw this with the score.  
  •  take a listen to this piece of the batman animated intro (insert audio clip :39 to the end) 
  • Now take a listen to a clip from the gargoyles episode one. Take special note of the similarities in the use of the horns.  
  • So when I investigated the music, I found that the composer for Gargoyles is a man named Carl Johnson and my first thought was CJ?  From Grove street?  I wondered if he still rode with Big Smoke, out here still chasin the vagos on locomotives and stuff 
  • Insert audio clip “all you had to do was follow the d*@n train CJ” (:27) 
  • As a side note I came across a youtube video by the user WarBear about why failing the train mission in GTA san Andreas isn’t the players fault. I have the link to that video in the description. 
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aIvG8aCuYFw 
  • Now back to the topic at hand, after digging deeper and discovering his website carljohnsonmusic.com, I found that he did indeed compose for batman: the animated series.  Then when I looked a bit deeper I saw some of the other shows he has composed for: 
  •  Looney Tunes 
  • Aladdin the return of jafar and the king of thieves 
  • anamaniacs 
  • The amazing Spiderman 
  • Disneys Hercules 
  • Freakazoid 
  • 007 skyfall 
  • and Wall-E 
  • Talk briefly about the reboot/ jordan peele movie (He reportedly pitched a film idea to disney in 2018) 
  • It was awesome to see that he was a composer that worked on feature films, and when I jumped down that rabbit hole I found that Jordan Peele reportedly pitched a film idea for Gargoyles to Disney in 2018.  
  • On December 7th 2019 Comedian and impressionist Julian Fernandez  @JulianFcomedy stated on instagram that he would voice Goliath in the Jordan Peele movie but this has not been confirmed. 
  • No major, concrete details about this pitch has come to light recently but I can only hope that something does come of it soon.   
  • Hook shot 
  • I mentioned at the top of the show that I would be trying a few new things and this next little segment is one of them. Whenvever you hear that little interlude that just happened, you know that we are moving into a new segment. So now we have come to the portion of the show that I like to call the Hook Shot.  This is where I watch the first 3-5 episodes of the show at hand and if I’m hooked then I think that you should give it a shot.  
  • To watch Gargoyles, I hopped onto Disney plus and watched the first 5 episodes and I must say that this is an amazing story driven set of action-packed episodes.  In this short series of episodes we are introduced to dynamic and likable characters.  We are shown hate, betrayal, racism, intrigue and trust among the main characters and even a love triangle.  The first 5 episodes of Gargoyles actually act as a 5-part introduction to the series.  Each episode is called Awakening part 1-5. 
  • For me one of the most dynamic moments of this re-watch was when Goliath must make a choice between holding on to his past by saving the life of Demona and accepting his new life with the humans of New York by saving the life of Detective Mazda. 
  • I definitely think that you should give this show a shot so it gets a thumbs up from me 
  • Closing 
  • I can’t say it enough. Gargoyles is a dope show and I am excited to continue my journey revisiting it.  and while there isn’t much information about the reboot or jordan peele movie, I would love to see it happen.  Then again, the show itself is so good that I wouldn’t be heartbroken if a movie didn’t happen.  The show is good as it is and I believe that many people still think back on it fondly. I think that you would also love it to even if it is your first time visiting their world.  
  • Black light 
  • Now before I let you go; I want to take you to the part of the show that I call the “Black light”. Here I scour the farthest darkest corners of the internet to shine some light on a piece of work or artist that has piqued my interest. Today I have 2, first is the Loose Change podcast hosted by my wife Deanna.  Lets face it, the whole world is going through massive changes and on the Loose Change podcast you can hear insightful conversations with life coaches, pastors, spouses who have to love from a distance and more.  Check out the season 2 finale on all major platforms.  Next we Dustknight illustrations by Dustin Grofsick. You can find him on Instagram and Facebook @D-G-L-U-P-O-0-7. If you are looking for illustrations, book covers, poster art and business logos, his unique style may be the best for your creative project. For project inquires you can DM him on facebook and Instagram.  Again this is Dustknight illustrations @D-G-L-U-P-O-0-7. 
  • Trivia 
  • Aight this is the last new segment I am going to try this week, I promise. Just like the black light segment I am doing trivia for each episode.  The trivia will consist of one question that directly relates to the episode and a fan question.  The first 3 people to respond with the correct answer to the trivia question on my instagram or Twitter post for this episode will get a shout out on the next episode.  So here goes: 
  • Question 1: What is detective elisa Mazdas heritage? 
  • a. black and Mexican 
  • b. black and white 
  • c. black and native American 
  • d. black and Chinese 
  • Question 2: Which show was not a part of Disney’s one Saturday morning? 
  • a. Pepper Ann 
  • b. Doug 
  • c. Recess 
  • d. Quack Pack 
  • Remember to get a special shout out on my next episode all you have to do is leave a comment on my Instagram or twitter at toonloreDR with the correct answers. I will call out the top 3 responses.   
  • Outro 

And that’s our show! This David Devine Hughes and this has been Toon Lore Done Right and don’t forget to like share, review, comment and subscribe. I can’t wait to see what new countries and people we can reach.  If you would like to submit a trivia question please send an email to toonloredr@gmail.com with the subject line TLDR Trivia.  Please give a multiple choice question and note the correct answer. Also feel free to leave your twitter or instagram handles in your message. You can make suggestions on future episodes by joining the facebook page at facebook.com/toonlore and follow me on instagram and twitter at toonloredr. So until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation, its been real.

 

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We don’t all black the same Show transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right episode 6

What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a bi-weekly podcast where I take a moment to give you a brief yet detailed history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. Or that’s what I would normally do.  Today will be a little bit different.  First I want to say thank you to all of the listeners that’s been rockin with me since February. I’ve been privileged to have listeners from all over the world including Germany, Canada, the Netherlands, Brazil, Venezuela, Portugal, the UK, Ireland, Russia and of course Hong Kong and the US. With only about 20 listens per episode, I have a small voice but its not one that I take lightly.   

I am speaking here because to many of the people I know, I am their only connection to the black community.  I don’t just mean my white friend because as an African American living in Hong Kong, many of my Chinese associates have literally no other black friends. And because of this in, many ways I am expected to both show them the pinnacle of black excellence while allowing them to “not see color”.  I need to be black enough to put in the group or company photo but not so black that I make them recognize their privilege.  Now in the interest of transparency, I will say that many of the people in my circle don’t intend to offend me when you ask me to show case my physical ability by doing backflips, or assume that I can play basketball (I’m trash by the way), or expecting me to know every rap song when we go do karaoke.  It just means that you don’t know any better at the moment.  But its exhausting being on the receiving end of racism and micro aggressions then also being the person who has to educate these same people who think that we are all similar. It comes as a shock to them when I say that we don’t all black the same.   

To give context, todays date is June 6th 2020 and the murder of George Floyd at the hands of a police officer has brought me and many others to an all time low.  I’m tired of my people being murdered, I’m tired of people not taking it seriously, I’m tired of people taking the rhetoric of “I can’t Breath” that is meant to bring light to our plight and use it for their own gain. I’m tire of people and corporations doing the bare minimum to show support without making real commitments and most of all, this makes me never want to move back to America. The place that I was born, the place that I was raise and the country that I love. Now lets take a moment to think about this. At this moment, I would rather live in Hong Kong where there is an ever-looming threat of a communist take over than go to a country that is supposed to be “The land of opportunity”. At least here in HOng Kong, I can go jogging 3 times a week and not fear for my life.  I can pass a police officer on the street without my heart rate increasing. I can raise 2 beautiful children to value their blackness everywhere they go and know that they don’t have to worry about school shootings.  

  • What does this mean for me and this podcast moving forward? 

So what does that mean for Toon Lore Done Right moving forward? It means that I will lean more into my unique expression of blackness. To be honest it may take me some time to find the right formula for me but I feel that I have an obligation to myself and my community to be authentic. I’m going to start by taking time during each episode to highlight creators of color that I have come like: 

  • On youtube 
  • Howie azy 
  • Marques Brownlee 
  • Might Keef 
  • Kev on stage 
  • Mo Lowrey 
  • Kevon Carter 
  • Comedian Michael jr. 
  • Cartoon block 
  • The specifically black nerd media like  
  • Blerd up podcast * 
  • Black N animated podcast * 
  • Toonrific Tariq on youtube * 
  • Mann of a thousand thoughts on youtube * 
  • RDC world 1 
  • Caleb city 
  • cilvanis 

I’m also not going to shy away from my Christian context either, because that is a huge part of who I am as a person and as a creator.  

  • End with prayer 

So to wrap things up, if my words and thoughts seem a bit scattered, that’s because they are. It’s difficult for me to truly express how I’m feeling right now and I’m sure that I’m not the only one. This episode is for those people who want to speak up but don’t think that they have a big enough voice. This is for those who want to take a stand but fear the backlash that their platform can bring. Look my podcast gets an average of 20 listens per episode so I don’t expect you to share this or for this to shake the earth.  What I do expect is for you to make progress in your own arena. Now with that being said, if you want to end the podcast here, I encourage you to follow the creators I mentioned, elevate black voices, and support where you can. However, for those who want to stay a bit longer, I am going to end in a prayer to God by the power of Jesus Christ and the holy spirit. I’ll give you about 10 seconds of silence before I start. 

Lord father God I am coming to you broken, tired and mourning over the murder of George Floyd and so many others like him. Father I am lamenting over my brothers and sisters in the United States that must deal with police brutality, micro aggressions and systematic racism on a daily basis. In a moment when political tensions are at its height and racial tension seems to be at a breaking point many of us don’t know what to say or how to move forward. It’s tough carrying the weight of my race on my shoulders and it’s exhausting knowing that I may be the only source of education for my peers. But father we rest in your strength hoping and praying that the next generation will have a better life than we do. A life absent of these same daily fears. Father God we meditate on your word as it is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. Father give us the wisdom and the courage to move forward as we work toward racial equality not just in this moment but for the many moments to come. It’s in Jesus name I pray amen. 

This is David Devine Hughes and this has been Toon Lore Done Right, so until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, concept in animation, or my personal view on how we don’t all black the same… 

 its been real. 

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Proud Family Show transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right episode 5

  • Cold open 
  • “You and me will always be tight. Family every single day and night…” That’s right people today I am going to dive into a great show from my childhood so sit back and grab some proud snack because today on Toon Lore Done right I’m going to give you the TLDR on Disneys, the Proud family 
  • Intro the podcast 
  • What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a bi-weekly podcast where I take a moment to give you a brief yet detailed history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. You can call me Dave, and I’m kind of student of animation history.  Before I get started, I want to give a special shout out to everyone who has been faithfully listening to  and sharing the podcast.  With my first 4 episodes alone I have received over 175 total listens.  This may not seem super huge to some of you but this is a mega milestone for me. 200 is just around the corner!  With that being said lets jump right into it. 
  • Intro the show 
  • Give brief overview of the show 
  • The Proud family is a 2d animated tv show that aired on Disney from 2001 to 2005.  THe show follows the life of Penny Proud, a strong willed 14-year old African American girl. The supporting cast includes her mom and dad, Trudy and Oscar, her younger siblings, a set of twins named Bebe and Cece, her grandmother Suga Mamma and her dog Puff and her Uncle Bobby.   
  • Talk about the show producer Bruce W Smith also co-directed hair love 
  • The Show was created by Bruce W. Smith and was originally piloted for Nickelodeon but was eventually picked up by Disney.  Before creating the Proud family Mr. Smith had a strong history in animation.  Graduating from Cal Arts, his credits include Who Framed Roger Rabbit, one of my personal favorites A Goofy Movie, Tarzan and the Emperors New Groove.  And his post Proud family accolades are just as impressive.  He worked on The Princess and the Frog, Wreck-it Ralph, Frozen and he also co-directed animation on the Oscar award winning short film Hair Love.  If you want to know more about Hair love you can  check out episode 4 of Toon Lore Done Right.  
  • The Show has been nominated for and/or won a number of  awards as well.  These awards include but are not limited to the Annie award for outstanding character design, the BET comedy awards for Outstanding animated series and the image awards for Outstanding performance and supporting actor. 
  • Give your connection to the show.  
  • I had the privilege of watching most of the Proud family in its initial run.  Like I mentioned earlier, the show launched in September 2001.  And to give some historical context, Youtube was still about 5 years away from being created, I was in middle school,  smart phones were still years away from being household products and my whole family still shared 1 tv. These were truly the dark ages of entertainment consumption. So  with that in mind, when one person wanted to watch something the whole family had to watch it.  I can’t remember how exactly we came across the proud family but as soon as we heard intro song with Solange and Destinys Child, we were all hooked.  Even now that theme song thumps my dude and if you disagree come at me.  It was a party every time the show came on. I think that I look back fondly on the show because watching the show became an event that my whole family could enjoy.  And representation is still key. There were, and arguably still aren’t many options for African Americans to see ourselves in animation so we naturally connected with the characters. 
  • Meat 
  • Dive into each of the characters starting with Penny 
  • Most people connected with Penny.  She was an independent 14 year old with spunk that enjoyed a good time and loved her family, even though they got on her nerves.  voiced by Kyla Pratt, Penny often fell to peer pressure but ultimately had a strong moral compass; often advocating for students to stop gossiping and spreading rumors. In the Proud family movie, which was extremely weird but also equally dope wraps up the series, she gains a bit of independence.  Which is good because the movie serves as kinda the series finally as Penny learns to really love her family for all of their quirks. 
  • Oscar and trudy 
  • Pennys Dad Oscar is an entrepreneur and owner of Proud Snacks. Think Scooby snacks but they are for people and nobody likes them. Voiced by Tommy Davidson who I knew from Malcom and Eddie, MadTv and of course In living color. He definitely loves his family but is a bit of a flirt and this along with his bumbling antics often puts him at odds with his wife Trudy.  Trudy, voice by Paula Jai Parker, was a veterinarian and all around super mom.  With a steady job she is the real bread winner and in many ways leads the family. She is loving and caring but strict when she needs to be. 
  • Suga mama  
  • Then we have Suga Mamma, Voiced by JoMarie Payton, who I knew as Harriette Winslow from Family Matters, was hilarious! She had a love hate relationship with her son Oscar and mostly prefers the company of her older son Bobby who is voiced by Cedric the Entertainer, who I first got truly acquainted with as one of the Original Kings of Comedy.  in many ways Suga Mamma reminded me of my own grandmother with her sass and spunk.  She looks kind and homely but can handle her own.  She is a big fan of tv wrestling and isn’t afraid to show off them hands if she needs to.   
  • The twins – voiced by Tara strong 
  • Lastly we have Pennys younger twin siblings BeBe and Cece who were voiced by the legendary Tara Strong.  Tara strong is one of my favorite voice actors of all time, voicing iconic roles like; Ben Tennyson, Raven from Teen titans, Timmy Turner, Bubbles from the power puff girls, Harley Quinn and Twilight Sparkle from My little Pony.  Also as a side note, My little pony is a pretty good show. The twins are named after the gospel music duo Bebe and Cece Winans and they love their older sister Penny even though they play a little too rough with her sometimes.  
  • Favorite episode or moment 
  • Together with the tense relationship she has with her dad and the sometimes rough relationship with her siblings; it is Pennys interaction with her family that makes this show grounded. Their family dynamic is, in my opinion, the major reason why the show captured so many hearts.  With that being said, I am so glad that they are bringing the show back.  At some point in 2020 The Proud Family:”Louder and prouder” is set to come to Disneys streaming service Disney plus. This was confirmed by Oscar Proud voice actor Tommy Davidson in an interview with Where is the Buzz TV.  In a seemingly off the cuff remark, he drops that he show is set to return.  
  •  *insert clip* 
  •  The details of the return are scarce and all we really know is that the show will not be a reboot but a revitalization.  It is set to continue the story of the prouds a few years after the end of the proud family movie. and is currently slated to arrive on Disney plus August 2020.  Disney has found great success with revitalizations such as High school musical the musical, Star wars the clone wars and the yet to be released Lizzie McGuire follow up.  So I’m hoping that louder and prouder is bigger and better. 
  • Closing 
  • Representation matters 
  • The Proud family was an awesome show from my childhood and I would bet that it still holds up today.  It was a big deal to have a thoughtful animated family comedy similar to  that of Family matters on tv. And If I say it once I’ll say it a thousand more times, Representation matters.  To quote Gary Marsh, president and chief creative officer at Disney Channels Worldwide, “The genius of the original Proud Family series was that, under the guise of a family comedy, it provided a brilliant social commentary on our life and times. With this new series, Bruce and Ralph will once again challenge everyone to think differently about the world we share.” 
  • Outro 
  • This has been David Devine Hughes with Toon Lore Done Right and don’t forget to like share, review, comment and subscribe I can’t wait to pass that 200 lister mark. You can make suggestions on future episodes by joining the facebook page at facebook.com/toonlore and get a deeper look into some other topics by reading my blog at toonlore.wordpress.com. So until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation, its been real. 

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Hair Love Show transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right episode 4

  • Cold open 
  • The Oscar award winning short film that celebrates Fatherhood, blackness and natural hair. It’s a film that took that has gone on to inspire little girls around the world. Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right where today I will give you the TLDR on one of my favorite animated short films Hair Love. 
  • intro to the podcast 
  •  What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a bi-weekly podcast where I take a moment to give you a brief yet detailed history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. You can call me Dave, and I’m kind of a toon historian in training.  Before I get started, I want to give a special shout out to everyone who is following on the facebook page, facebook.com/toonlore.  Here is where you can give your suggestions for my next podcasts and engage with the toon lore community and more. I also want to give a thank you to the people who follow my blog at toonlore.wordpress.com where you get greater insight on my thought process. 
  • Intro to the short film 
  • Hair Love is a story about a 5 year old African American girl named Zuri and her father Stephen. In the film Zuri’s mom is away so it is up to Stephen to step up to style Zuris, kinky natural hair for the first time as they prepare to go to a special event. As he tries and fails to tame Zuris hair, he opens a video of a hair beauty vlogger named Angela.  As he struggles with this big task, we are taken on a journey filled with hilarity and heart. 
  • Hair love is the brainchild of former NFL wide receiver Matthew A. Cherry.  While he didn’t come from an artistic background he has been surrounded by film since retiring from the NFL.  He most notably became a producer on the film “The Black Klansmen”.  Cherry has no children of his own but was inspired by a number of viral videos showcasing black fathers interacting with their sons and daughters. He was also inspired be a 2014 CDC report that found that African American dads are more involved with their children on a daily basis than fathers from any other racial group.  More that half of the black fathers who do not live with their children are still active in their lives. If you want to find out more, I will have a link to the full report in the show notes. While the short film has gone on to receive celebrity endorsements and much acclaim, so has the book that it was based on.  Before Hair love became the Oscar award winning film, it was first a New York times bestselling children’s book illustrated by Vashti Harris.  Known for her Little leaders’ series, which is a collection of books that highlights well known and some not so well known African American leaders; most of which are women.  Full disclosure I love these books and have bought them for my 2 daughters.  It is amazing to see how she identifies with women of history that look like her.  Much like the little leader’s series, the Hair love film allows her to see herself in diverse contexts.  
  • Meat 
  • And it’s that context that is key for her.  At the time of this recording, my family and I don’t live in America.  While my oldest daughter was born in america, we relocated to Hong Kong when she was just under 2 years old.  Now that she is almost 6, she has spent more of her life in Asia than America.  As we live in a place where darker skinned people are a minority and where I’m constantly told that I quote “look just like Obama”, representation is important.  Very few people that my daughter knows has hair like hers and finding the right products to take care of her natural hair can be a real struggle.  So hair love helps us to teach her that curly hair is beautiful and it is a part of who she is. We don’t want her to feel otherized because of her hair like Deandre Arnold 
  • For those who don’t know who Deandre Arnold is, he is an African American high school student that was suspended for having locks.  His hair was against the school’s dress code and because he was strong enough to not cut his hair, he was suspended.  Although he was from a small town in Texas, this story made national news and even allowed him to be a guest on the Ellen show.  Because of his strength of character, Matthew Cherry and Vashti Harris, welcomed him as their special guest at the Oscars.  During the acceptance speech Cherry said quote “Hair love was done so that we can see more representation in Animation, we wanted to normalize black hair. There’s a very important issue out there called the Crown act and if we can help to get this passed in all 50 states, it will help stories like Deandre Arnold, who is our special guest tonight never happen.”  He also went on to dedicate the Oscar to Kobe Bryant by saying quote “This award is also dedicated to Kobe Bryant; may we all have a second act as great as his was.” This dedication was particularly special because Cherry and Bryant are the only former athletes to win an Oscar for short films. Bryant of course won his Oscar in 2017 for the animated short film Dear Basketball which was accomplished when Bryant worked with heavy hitters like animator Glen Keane and legendary composer John Williams.  If you want to know a bit more about that, you can check out episode 2 of Toon Lore Done Right.   
  • Speaking of heavy hitters, hair love has a great list of supporters as well.  Everette Downing jr. And Bruce W. Smith were co-directors on Hair love.  Combined they have movie credits that include but are not limited to Ratatouille, Wall-E, Up, The proud family, Space Jam, as well as Princess and the Frog.  Peter Ramsey, an executive producer on the film, became the first African American to direct a multi-million dollar CG animated film with Dream works “Rise of the Guardians.” He also co-directed one of my favorite super hero films of all time, Spiderman into the spider verse.  co-directing Spiderman made him the first African American to win an Oscar for best animated feature film. And the list goes on, other producers include Jordan Peele, yara Shihidi, Gabriel union, Dwayne wade and featured the voice talent of Issa Rae; the creator of Awkward black girl.  I would also have to mention that there were nearly 5,000 people who supported hair love on Kickstarter as it raised nearly $300,000. The most of any animated short film on the platform. 
  • Its success on Kickstarter brought it to the attention of executives at Sony pictures animation.  This partnership allowed Hair love to be played before the feature films, Angry birds 2 and Jumanji the next level.  
  • Closing 
  • So if you couldn’t tell by now, I absolutely love Hair Love.  The main character Zuri is a 5 year old kinky haired african american girl with a strong will and its nearly a mirror image of my 5 year old.  Representation matters an academy award winning film that my daughter can identify will means the world to me.  When you look past the celebrity endorsements, the academy award and even the many accolades it has received.  You will see that it’s just a story about how a dad will ho the extra mile for his daughter.  And that’s some thing that I can relate to.  
  • Outro 
  • This has been David Devine Hughes with Toon Lore Done Right and don’t forget to like share, review, comment and subscribe. Make suggestions on future episodes and become a part the conversation by joining the facebook page at facebook.com/toonlore and get a deeper look into some topics I don’t get a chance to talk about on the podcast by reading my blog at toonlore.wordpress.com. So until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation, its been real. 

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Static Shock Show transcripts – Toon Lore Done Right episode 3

  • Cold open 

 He Fights the criminals and chases the bad guys. He Saves the world and flies through the skies. Today on Toon lore Done right I’ll give you the TLDR on one of my favorite super heroes static shock 

  • Intro to the podcast, mention that It’s biweekly and thank the Facebook users 

What up fam?! Welcome to Toon Lore Done Right, a bi-weekly podcast where I take a moment to give you a brief yet detailed history of a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation. You can call me Dave, and I’m kind of a toon historian in training.  Before I get started, I want to give a special shout out to everyone who is following on the facebook page, facebook.com/toonlore.  Here is where you can give your suggestions for my next podcasts and engage with the toon lore community and more. I also want to give a thank you to the people who follow my blog at toonlore.wordpress.com where you get greater insight on my thought process. 

  • Intro the character and show (start/end dates) 

Now to jump into the main meat of the show, Virgil Hawkings also known as static shock, is an African American super hero with the power to control electricity. Hailing from the fictional town of Dakoata city, he was born without powers to a normal family, but when the police use an experimental gas meant to neutralize gang violence in the city, it had unintended consequences.  This freak accident gave him the power of  Electrokinesis, Magnetic manipulation, flight, energy shields reality alteration.  As a teenaged super hero, Static has to balance his home life, with his school responsibilities and his hero work. This dynamic is what grounded the character and made his world believable.   

  • Comic book origin 

As with many super heroes, Static originated in the pages of a comic book.  Because of his TV show, many people think that Static Shock is purely DC character along with the likes of batman and Superman.  However He actually got his start at Milestone media.  Milestone media was founded in 1993 by a coalition of African American artists and writers; Dwayne McDuffie, Denys Cowan, Michael Davis and Derek T. Dingle.  They believed that minorities were severely underrepresented in American comics so they created Milestone Media to correct this imbalance. In later years, milestone struck a deal with DC to license their characters while they retained the creative rights and that’s is how Static got introduced to the DC universe.  in Canon, the characters created by the group at Milestone media hail from the Dakotaverse, largely revolving around the fictional Dakota City where static calls home. 

  • Give powers, age, species and family life 

In comics, characters are often rebooted and have multiple origin stories so my Static history will focus mainly on his appearances in animation.  He has appeared in DC animated shows like Justice league unlimited, batman beyond, his own self title show Static Shock and a reimagined version of him appears the relatively more recent Young Justice series.  

The Static shock tv show, aired from the year 2000 to the year 2004.  It ran for 4 seasons with a total of 52 episodes.  Voiced by the amazing voice actor Phil LaMarr, we follow the life of Virgil Hawkins as he struggles to balance his home an hero lifestyles. If the name Phil lamar sounds familiar to you, you may know him as the voice of John Stewart/green lantern in Justice league unlimited, Hermes Conrad from futurama and one of my personal favorites, Samurai Jack,   

At a young age, Virgil lost his mother to gang violence and his father became active in the community.  This is a major factor in establishing Virgil’s love for justice and hatred for guns and gang violence. However, even though Virgil was a smart student, his environment pushed him toward the gang life.  This found him in the wrong place at the wrong time.  As the biggest gangs in Dakota city gathered the police fired an experimental tear gas container to pacify the group.  The container was full of quantum vapor and is what ultimately gave Virgil and the villains in his city their powers and the public would dub all those affected by the gas “Bang Babies” 

  • Overview some characters  

One of the big reasons why I loved this show is the awesome cast of characters.  Virgil came from a loving family.  While his mother was no longer with him, he always had his father, Robert and his sister Sharon.  And he was almost never seen without his best friend and eventual sidekick Richie also known as gear when he develops his abilities. His returning villains were characters like Rubber-band man, Heat Streak and Ivan Evans, also known as Ebon.  Now Ebon was the head of a large group of bang babies called “The Meta-Breed” and was a major villain throughout the series. He is essentially a living shadow and can create inter-dimensional portals and can manipulate shadows and pure darkness.  I loved the dynamic between Static and Ebon as they clashed time and again. 

  • Shows impact on me 

The dynamic among static, his family and his villains had a huge impact on me. As I mentioned before the static shock show premiered in the year 2000 and I was still in middle school at the time.  So to see a super hero that looked like me and was still in school had a profound affect on me. Other than John Stewart green lantern and storm from the Xmen, I didn’t really see many people who looked like me in as super heroes.  So Static quickly became one of my favorite super heroes.  He was brave, smart, had a loving family and a sense of justice.  He didn’t always get things right but he tried.  There was even an episode where they tackled racism.  Virgils best friend Richie was always embarrassed of his family and we later find out that Richies dad is racist and doesn’t want him to be friends with Virgil.  This episode hit me particularly hard because, this exact thing happened to me at the same time this episode aired.  A friend of mine approached me one day and told me that we could no longer hang out because her parents don’t like to see us together. It’s a tough reality but I found solace in the fact that one of my on screen heroes dealt with the same issue.  

  • Recommendation  

With that being said, static shock is one of my favorite super heroes and I can’t recommend his show enough.  It did come out in the early 2000s but it overall still holds up.  The cast of characters are wonderful and I would bet that many of the issues it deals with would be relevant today.  

  • Outro 

This has been David Devine Hughes with Toon Lore Done Right and don’t forget to like share, review, comment and subscribe. Make suggestions on future episodes and become a part the conversation by joining the facebook page at facebook.com/toonlore and get a deeper look into my process by reading my blog toonlore.wordpress.com. So until the next time I can give you the TLDR, on a film, tv show, character, or concept in animation, its been real. 

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