Sunday, November 30, 2008

Pancakes and Pussycats

Four thoughts had while eating pancakes and watching Josie and the Pussycats on Boomerang:


One: Given that the show is made for children, the quality of the music is surprisingly high. Not that I’d want a Jose and the Pussycats album or anything, but I’ll gladly admit that the obligatory chase music is not usually terrible, especially in light of what pop music was in the early 70s. To see for yourself, watch this clip in which the gang flees militant Muslims:



Two: Perhaps because the show offered sugar-addled children the first-ever black regular on a Saturday morning cartoon in the form of the plucky yet level-headed Valerie Brown, the producers apparently decided to make the other Pussycat, Melody Jones, the dumbest piece of shit ever. Literally, she is too dumbness to be alive. Even for a kid’s show, her stupidity is insulting. Melody is well into her late teen years on the show, and, I swear, by this point in her life she should realistically have either eaten battery acid because she thought it was milkshakes or been murdered by anyone who’s ever heard her talk.

Three: On grounds that she is unfailingly unpleasant and actually cattier than the three girls who are dressed like cats, I am tempted claim that there is no reason for bitchy Alexandra Cabot to hang out with the rest of the gang. She is not part of the band. She does nothing but make life worse for everyone around her. And she is unlikable: When provoked, Alexandra is downright awful, but she’s also often spiteful for no reason. But then I realize that the rest of the characters probably truly don’t like her — how could they? — and that the reason they keep her around in hopes that Melody will demonstrate her dim-wittedness in such a way that infuriates Alexandra to the point that Alexandra will murder Melody.

Four: The two male characters blow, if only because they’re so clearly derivative of the male from Scooby-Doo. Alan is a hunkier, more assuredly heterosexual version of Freddie, while Alexander is a snobbier, high-strung version of Shaggy that could probably benefit from smoking a scoobie-doobie. And it doesn’t help that Casey Kasem voiced both Alexander and Shaggy and does so almost identically.

For the sake of pop culture continuity, I’ll mention that 2001 live action movie version of Josie and the Pussycats cast Rosario Dawson as Valerie, Tara Reid as Melody and Missi Pyle as Alexandra. So even if the movie was an abysmal failure, it at least had spot-on casting.

3 comments:

  1. Anonymous9:32 PM

    How could you not point out how awkward it is that the black girl's name is Valerie Brown? They could have named her anything, but they picked the one last name that also happens to be her skin color. That is messed up.

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  2. You're over-analyzing the show. Just sit back and let it flow, like this guy clearly does when he watches:

    http://www.toplessrobot.com/2008/10/fan_fiction_friday_valerie_from_josie_and_the_puss.php

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  3. Actually, the "Josie and the Pussycats" soundtrack album (yes, one was actually released, and unlike the Archies albums it flopped) isn't half bad at all.

    And the only reason Alexandra hangs out with the gang (aside from giving the cast a much needed shot of personality) is because she's Alex's sister and I suppose he doesn't have much of a choice in the matter.

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