Saturday, October 2, 2010

Canon Television Review: Two Episodes of Kidd Video

During my last post, I featured a video of the opening credits of Kidd Video, a 1980s cartoon which, quite frankly, I knew very little about. Well, curiosity got the best of me so I have decided to watch a couple of episodes of what was surely a fascinating show. After all, what other show features a band with cousin Oliver from the Brady Bunch on keyboards? What other show features a band of four teenagers sucked up into a cartoon world in order to be musical slaves of a villain named Master Blaster? So, now it's time to watch some Kidd Video and follow the adventures of Kidd, Ash, Whiz, and Carla.

Episode 1: To Beat the Band

This is the very first episode of Kidd Video. We pick up right where the opening left off, as Glitter the fairy has sneezed Kidd Video from the clutches of the Master Blaster. While cousin Oliver, or Whiz as he is called on the show, wants to go home, the rest of the band wants to go on to Neon City, where all the citizens are teenagers and they have "good music there". At least, according to Glitter. Unfortunately, the mayor of Neon City, Leon is in the middle of the road and his recklessness causes the group to crash. Luckily, they're all right. Leon enters the ship and speaks like Boomhauer, causing the kids to not understand him. The band and Glitter go outside, and Glitter is so allergic to flowers that she sneezes violently enough to give her the strength to lift the ship up and put it back on the road. Yep. The kids figure out what Leon is saying by slowing down a tape of his speech, so they figure out that the Master Blaster is speeding everything up in Neon City, causing the citizens of Neon City to age rapidly. Why is the Master Blaster doing this, you ask? Because the denizens of Neon City will not see his band the Copycats play. Also, the Copycats can only play music if the Master Blaster kidnaps a band and puts them in a bubble. So, just like every other music act, the Copycats can only play music that other people have already perfected.

They go to the Neon City Library, which is one trippy place. All of the books are actually movies, and for some reason Electric Ave. plays, so the band goes to Electric Avenue. There they see a device set up by the Master Blaster hooked up to a giant clock, which is what is speeding up time. Whiz and Glitter try to figure out a way to disable this box, while the rest of the band go after the Master Blaster. Somehow, I don't like their chances. The rest of Kidd Video gets to the Blaster's fortress, and they try to free Lionel Richie from the giant bubble, but they fail and are captured by the Copycats. Meanwhile, the Blaster's new plan is to get everyone from Neon City into the stadium to watch the Copycats perform, and stop time, allowing the Copycats to have a permanent audience. I've gotta say, that's a lousy plan, as you won't get any revenue from an audience that's always in the building. But I guess the Master Blaster is more about control than profits. Oh well. Anyway, the kids of Kidd Video are trapped in a prison of crystal bars, and Whiz is having no luck with disconnecting the clock, as he's being sped up as well. Ash tries to ad-lib a quick song, which is terrible, but it does give the others an idea. So they challenge the Copycats to prove their musical chops and play them a song, and eventually, one of the cats plays such a high note that it breaks the crystal bars, allowing Kidd Video to escape. Instead of going after them, the Copycats decide to play for their audience. Big mistake, as Kidd Video disconnects the Copycats' instruments from their giant bubble, and Whiz goes so fast that he knocks the Master Blaster down and stops the device. Afterwords, Whiz still wants to go home, but his foolhardy compatriots want to continue on. Oh yeah, and a Kidd Video music video called A Little TLC plays at the end of the show. It's not really my bag, but then again, this show wasn't really my bag either. I'll give it a 3.8, as the heroes are rather bland and Kidd and Ash just grate on my every nerve. However, it was drawn well enough.

Episode 2: The Lost Note (Ep. 7)

The gang is in an abandoned city made of stone and without color, so they decide to brighten things up by painting the place in color. Glitter tells of a golden note stuck in stone that whoever pulls out will become the king. Naturally, Kidd tries it, but fails miserably. HA! Ash, meanwhile, hears some music coming from a large bamboo wall, so naturally he gets his groove machine out to add a beat. He also comes up with some terrible lyrics, which are, and I quote: "I heard the music from the wild bamboo. It made me wild... it made you wild too. Down do-be-do down!" His lyrics are so bad that the Golden Note starts to shake, so Ash goes up to it and pulls it out, much to the dismay of Kidd. All of a sudden, the stone statues are turned back into real people, and man, they're quite tall to boot. The newly reanimated people put Ash on a giant throne and make him king, carrying him off away from the rest of the group. The group follows in their Kiddmobile, and try to enter to see Ash, but the guards keep them away. To distract them, they play one of their music videos with a projector on a giant screen, and remarkably it works. They enter, but Ash has really warmed to the idea of being king, as he's treated great and his subjects even like his crappy lyrics. The rest of the group mock Ash, and Ash gets all angry and kicks them out. Meanwhile, the Master Blaster has sent the Copycats to retrieve the Golden Note because, well, I guess he really doesn't like that civilization. Carla comes up with a plan to snap Ash out of his egotrip, so they sabotage his meal by adding powerful spices to his giant bowl of soup and 100 pound fish. This backfires, as Ash sends the rest of Kidd Video to the dungeon, so they can think about what they've done. I don't know how ruining Ash's food is supposed to get him back on Kidd Video's side, but whatever.

Meanwhile, Ash gets distracted by a tailor, and inadvertently hands the Golden Note to a giant scarecrow, which just happens to be the Copycats in disguise. Wow, they actually did something right. Good for them. Eventually, the townspeople once again turn into stone, and Ash finally realizes what a jerk he's been, so he frees his friends from the dungeon by using the note from the crown. The gang wonders how they're going to find the copycats, but luckily, the peacock shaped throne speaks and as the "seat of knowledge and power", pledges to help. The throne does this by dancing to an Alan Parsons song in a sequence that can only be described as freaky. The kids find the Copycats at the top of a giant castle. When trying to climb the staircase, Kidd Video meets some resistance as the Copycats roll a stone block down the stairs, but it is easily dodged. Instead of continuing to climb and dodge the blocks Donkey Kong style, Ash decides to go with the riskier plan of throwing a giant hook on a rope onto another building, and swinging 15 stories up onto the top of the roof. Somehow, this plan works, and Ash is able to knock out all of the Copycats in one shot, getting the note back and restoring the civilization. Ash then gives up the crown and gets revenge on his friend by putting some extreme hot sauce on their foods, but he gets doused in kool-aid for his efforts. The episode ends with another Kidd Video music video, this one called Come Back to Me. Once again, I found myself wanting to piledrive Kidd and Ash, and the story didn't make a whole lot of sense, and the episode was kind of hard to sit through, so I'll give this a 3 out of 10.

So, I guess I've learned that Kidd Video just isn't the 1980s cartoon for me. Perhaps next time I'll just watch Heathcliff of something. If you have any memories of Kidd Video or thoughts about this review, than feel free to leave a comment. Also, if you have any ideas for future reviews, than share them either by leaving a comment or by sending me an e-mail at

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