Saturday, October 1, 2011

Cartoon time


I have been meaning to write a short post about one of my favorite American animation series—’Courage, the Cowardly Dog’, a brilliant effort by John R. Dilworth and team, which originally ran on Cartoon Network from November 1999 until November 2002 (four seasons), with a total of 52 episodes produced. At present, it is running on Cartoon Network here in Oslo each night at around 8:15 pm and again shortly after midnight (on weeknights). I’ve seen most of the episodes, some of them several times, especially my favorites. I really cannot find enough superlatives to describe the show. I love everything about it—from the clever storylines, excellent animation, attention to detail, interesting backgrounds and overall creepiness at times. It is not really suitable for small children, since it is a fairly graphic horror cartoon of sorts, although there are a few sweet episodes as well. The star of the show, the pink dog Courage, must deal with all sorts of challenges in the form of freaky people, were-moles, dragons, murderous vegetables, mysterious CIA types, evil snowmen, evil magicians—the list goes on and on. He overcomes his initial fear and cowardice and protects his family—Muriel and Eustace Bagge—from all of the monsters and assorted creatures who want to do them harm. They all live out in the middle of Nowhere, Kansas in a farmhouse. Eustace, a cranky old man, is supposed to be a farmer, but nothing grows for him and the land around the house is pretty barren. Muriel, a housewife, is his direct opposite, a cheerful, helpful, sprightly older woman. Eustace is greedy and always looking to make a quick buck; Muriel keeps him in line and is definitely Courage’s supporter and protector. Courage loves Muriel, not Eustace. Whenever she gets into trouble, he loses his cool completely and freaks out, but he always comes around to ‘I’ll save you, Muriel’. And then he goes about the business of saving her. I’m including a list of some of my favorite episodes here.

The Last of the Starmakers 
The Magic Tree of Nowhere 
Food of the Dragon 
Dome of Doom 
The Snowman Cometh 
Snowman’s Revenge 
The Sandman Sleeps 
The Night of the Weremoles and Mother’s Day
The Quilt Club 
A Beaver’s Tale 

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