Captain Simian is possibly the best cartoon ever aired, without exaggeration. It was funny, clever, well-drawn and well-animated, and had a stellar voice cast.
This series, which tragically lasted a mere 26 episodes, was the sort of cartoon that parents would have loved to watch with their kids. Sadly, neither generation knew the show existed. (In my area, the show bounced around the Saturday morning lineup, briefly moving to Sunday, and even changed networks. I had to search for it again and again.)
The show was funny on multiple levels. It was a cartoon about monkeys -- kids don't need much more than that -- but that was the lowest level of humor this show reached. It also made jokes that *only* the parents would get. There were references to "A Clockwork Orange" (Malcolm McDowell did one of the regular voices), a film noir episode that paid homage to "Maltese Falcon" and "Chinatown" beautifully, even an episode titled "Surf Monkeys Must Dive!" (named after a Troma film that NO child should ever see). The in-jokes went on and on.
On top of that, there was the simple irony that the main adversaries, Captain Simian and Lord Nebula, were voiced by Jerry Doyle and Michael Dorn -- the battle of the primetime Sci-Fi Security Chiefs -- Mister Garibaldi and Lt. Worf in a grudge match for control of the entire universe.
The show died its unfortunate death because the toys weren't selling well. (As I understand it, the toys weren't selling well because they were being dumped directly into the 3/$10 bin at the major chains, rather than being shelved.) If the toys don't sell, the show isn't seen as worthwhile.
It's still around in re-runs, but no one can say for how long. So watch it while you can.
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