They Built Marzipan City

chowderAnyone who hasn’t yet been exposed to Cartoon Network’s “Chowder” over the past two years has some serious explaining to do.

In spite of being recently canceled by the network, the show has gained a cult following due to the myriad of talent that have appeared on it during its 49-episode run, including Aqua Teen Hunger Force’s Dana Snyder, Teen Titan’s Tara Strong and Futurama’s John DiMaggio. Developed for television by C.H. Greenblatt, who has worked on other successful series’ such as “SpongeBob SquarePants” and “The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy,” “Chowder” is a rare treat that appeals to both children and adults alike.

Released on DVD in March, “Chowder: Volume Two” features ten episodes that highlight some of the best moments in the series.

Taking place in the fictional Marzipan City, “Chowder” is easily one of the most creatively animated shows to ever appear on television. Featuring lush backgrounds, full of rich and vibrant colors, it’s too easy to get suckered into this imaginative and beautiful world. As a matter of fact, the animation is so strong that it has almost has a hallucinogenic effect. At times, you forget about how well the story is written or how engaging the characters are.

For this reason alone, small children will absolutely fall in love with the show.

Those older however will find their own reason to love it. Telling the story of “Chowder,” [voiced by Nicky Jones] a young cooking apprentice who seems to eat more than he cooks, we follow his exploits that range from playing sports against his own wishes and dealing with wisdom teeth and the opposite sex. These are events that all adults can relate to and while they sound elementary, the way they are handled on the show is slapstick, yet smart, inducing adult smiles and simultaneous hilarity from children.

Being able to enjoy a cartoon with another generation is no easy task, but it is here where this show and the episodes on this DVD in particular, accomplish this task and then some.

The supporting roles of Snyder, DiMaggio, Strong and Dwight Schultz also do an excellent job of making the show a bit more adult-oriented. Snyder’s portrayal of of Gazpacho, a local store owner scared of his mother, provides the show with several tongue in cheek moments that both adults and children will find cute and weird- all at the same time. DiMaggio is loads of fun as Shnitzel, despite only uttering the words of “Radda-Radda” throughout the show. Strong is the cherry on the sundae, providing plenty of laughs as “Truffles,” Chowder’s mother figure who keeps him in like while marching to the beat of her own drum. Schultz, who many will remember from his stints on the “A-Team” and “Star Trek: Voyager” is a quirky, but equally as daring and adventurous as  father figure and boss as Mung Daal.

Add all of these characters together with uber strong animation and a fun story and you have the recipe for a great animated show.

It’s sad that in the end Cartoon Network didn’t know what they had, but that won’t stop you from watching it on DVD and discovering the series for yourself.

About Patrick Hickey Jr. 8799 Articles
Patrick Hickey Jr. is the Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Master Jedi and Grand Pooh-bah of ReviewFix.com and is the author of the book, "The Minds Behind the Games: Interviews with Cult and Classic Video Game Developers," from leading academic and non-fiction publisher McFarland and Company. He is currently the Assistant Director of the Journalism Program at Kingsborough Community College and is a former News Editor at NBC Local Integrated Media and a National Video Games Writer at the late Examiner.com. He has also had articles and photos published in The New York Times, The New York Daily News, Complex and The Syracuse Post-Standard. Love him. Read him.

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