Evil, Evil Monkey

Warren the Ape might be the most unlikely TV spin-off in many a moon, given the fact that it was inspired by a sitcom that got cancelled eight years ago. Although Greg the Bunny–a show about puppets that cohabit with humans–had a hard time keeping its head afloat in the ratings, it apparently became something of a cult favorite. Even though nobody’s heard from Greg in quite a while, this new show stars his buddy Warren DeMontague, one of the few puppets around who happens to be a Shakespearean actor. Try to remember the last time you saw an ape do The Merchant of Venice.

Since Greg the Bunny wound up on network television (it aired on Fox), Warren’s probably not thrilled about being relegated to MTV’s late-night programming. Of course, considering that this is the same network that produces The Hills, MTV is a befitting place for a show like this. Like The Hills, it’s a reality show that’s all scripted–it follows Warren’s mission to recapture the fame that’s eluded him ever since Greg the Bunny was taken off the air.

Warren was never anyone’s idea of a saint, but his quest to be on top again is so extreme that he’ll do all kinds of terrible things to get there. In the series premiere that went on the air Monday, June 14, he went for a TV spot for a breakfast cereal that would’ve given him his first acting gig in years.

The problem is that he’s not the only one who’s got his eye on it–when another puppet named Chauncey the Bear auditions for the same commercial, he’s so lovable that Warren thinks he doesn’t stand a chance of getting the part. You’d think Warren would have a little sympathy for Chauncey after learning that he has cancer and that his wife just walked out on him, but he’s so desperate to get Chauncey out of the picture that he cooks up a harebrained scheme to sabotage his career with a sex tape.

What’s nice about Warren the Ape is that its creator and star puppeteer, Dan Milano, understands that puppets aren’t funny in and of themselves. Instead, most of the laughs come from their personalities, and considering how self-satisfied and despicable Warren can be, it’s pretty fun to see what kinds of depths he’ll sink to just to make a name for himself. That’s probably the appeal behind The Hills, too.

This article originally appeared on AllMediaNY.com

About David Guzman 207 Articles
I just received my degree in journalism at Brooklyn College, where I served as the arts editor for one of the campus newspapers, the Kingsman. When it comes to the arts, I’ve managed to cover a variety of subjects, including music, films, books and art exhibitions. I’ve reviewed everything from “Slumdog Millionaire” (which was a good film) to “Coraline,” (which wasn’t) and I’ve also interviewed legendary film critic Leonard Maltin.

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