TV Review | Spliced! – “Honorary Freak,” “Come to the Dorkside”

Spliced! (Teletoon: 7:00 PM ET/PT starting April 8, 2010) is part of an unwelcome trend in Teletoon’s programming.  Like The Dating Guy, Spliced! has premiered outside of its home country months before its Canadian debut.

I don’t understand why Teletoon does this.  Why withhold programming for so long?  I’m not saying I want the fourth season of The Venture Bros. the same day as [adult swim], but Teletoon has a terrible habit of letting fine wine age way after its time.  Why debut Spliced! in Latin America, of all places?

Wait, it’s the television industry.  Screw me for thinking common sense exists there.

I’m also aware that show creators Simon Racioppa and Richard Elliott have written for cartoon also-rans like Mr. Meaty, Best Ed, Pig City and Grossology.  Screw it.  I like Spliced!  It’s one of the best things going for Teletoon right now.

I realize how sweeping a statement that is, but I defend it.  Sometimes, Teletoon airs an obvious kids’ cartoon like Wayside, Johnny Test and the George of the Jungle remake.  The Total Drama franchise, Stoked and 6teen are teen-oriented sitcoms, doubling as decent ratings-grabbers for Cartoon Network.

What Teletoon hasn’t attempted is a classic Nicktoons-style show, where adults and children can watch the show on different levels.  Spliced! is currently the closest to that ideal, taking the mantle over from Jimmy Two Shoes.  Spliced! isn’t on the level of Ren & Stimpy or Bob Clampett, but few cartoons are.

“Honorary Freak” is a good enough introduction to the show.  Spliced! establishes Peri (Rob Stefaniuk) and Entrée (Joe Pingue), two of the many mutants on Keep Away Island.  The inaugural short’s plot centers around Patricia (Katie Crown), a platypus and the only normal on the island.

Patricia feels lonely because she isn’t a mutant.  Peri and Entrée decide to cheer her up, mainly by avalanching her with flowers and forcing her to fight in the Mayo-Dome.  Peri and Entrée also rap, which isn’t needed and feels out-of-place.

“Honorary Freak” lays bare Spliced!‘s desire to be SpongeBob SquarePants.  Peri and Entrée are SpongeBob and Patrick.  Patricia is a monotreme Sandy Cheeks.  Mind you, Peri and Entrée aren’t as annoying as SpongeBob and Patrick, as P&E aren’t nearly as oblivious.

“Come to the Dorkside” has its moments.  The friendship-related Aesop is a little ham-fisted, but it’s balanced out by some brainwashing gags and an obligatory reference to A Clockwork Orange.  Mister Smarty Smarts (Mike Kiss) and Octocat are Spliced!‘s nominal villains, Mister Smarty Smarts filling the Plankton role well.

I hope Spliced! sticks around.  Any show that has a male character squeeze milk out his udders deserves at least some mention.  Having typed that, I hope the lactation fetishists don’t embrace Spliced!  God knows they’re turned on enough by Rocko’s Modern Life and Cow and Chicken.

C. Archer
Le Social