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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
If you grew up in the 90s, you most likely heard of What a Cartoon! And
Oh Yeah! Cartoons, with the former airing on Cartoon Network and the
latter airing on Nickelodeon. The concept was ingenious with each
show's focal point being to show new cartoons and see which ones would
take off and get their own show. It was a big success with shows like
The Powerpuff Girls, The Fairly Oddparents, Codename: Kids Next Door,
Chalkzone, and so many more shows(Though, WaC successfully created more
With the success of these shows, Disney decided to get on board with their own show about promoting new cartoons. . . . in 2006. By that time, What a Cartoon and Oh Yeah! Cartoons had long since been canceled, so Disney was way late to the party. Either they wanted to wait until the competition was dead, or cash in on the nostalgia of OY! and WaC. But hey, better late than never, right? Well, after this show, they should've stuck to the never part.
One of the biggest failures of this show was that almost every cartoon idea pitched in was dead on arrival. Take for example, Dudley and Nester Do Nothing. It's nothing more than someone taking the Mr. Magoo formula and modernizing it. That formula wasn't funny then, and it's not funny now. Another one being Boyz on Da Run(Nice grammar job there) which is literally nothing more than a boy band running away after they're revealed to be using a lip syncing machine. Mascot Prep is nothing more than a generic high school show about a kid fitting in, except the emphasis is on mascot products like for soap and so on. There are many more, but not only were these ideas dead on arrival, they were dead the moment they were thought up. It's like these creators had only five minutes to come up with ideas.
Not all the ideas were bad though. Too Many Robots! was actually not a bad idea. The concept of a show about a country girl living with her mad scientist uncle and his robots sounded great. Another good one being Flip-Flopped, which was basically kids being adults and vice versa. Finally, SheZow!, a show about a tough boy becoming a female superhero.
The problem was that, like the other shows, the execution was poorly handled. In TMR!, the main character, Digit, is a whinny, stereotypical teenage girl. In F-F, it's just the kids acting like adults and adults acting like kids. SheZow! wasn't too bad though.
There was no attempt to be creative at all, instead it relied on stereotypes and recycled plot lines. Not to mention all the jokes in every cartoon, the good and bad ones, were not funny at all and extremely predictable.
The only show that managed to get its own show was SheZow!, but it never aired on Disney. With some changes here and there, it was revived on the HUB Network. Why Diseny never picked it up, I'll never know.
The artwork and animation is deplorable. I know there are pilots, so the budget for these shows won't be huge, but for a first impression, they just looked unappealing. Almost every character designed looked uninspired and ugly to look at. The backgrounds looked very generic, with nothing interesting to look at. The animation overall was no better as it looked very choppy and stilted.
Shorty McShorts' Shorts fails at being a good launch point for new cartoons and to cash in on the nostalgia factor. Almost every concept for a new show was not only awful, but they were uncreative. The few there were got screwed over by bad writing and bad execution. It was a complete waste of time overall that should never have happened. Maybe one day, they'll bring back shows like What a Cartoon! and Oh Yeah! Cartoons to launch new shows, but hopefully, it will never reach the sheer awfulness of Shorty McShorts' Shorts.
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