Holy shit this was awesome.
Last year, Adult Swim’s Mike Lazzo was criticized because of the network’s lack of pickups for television by women producers, his response being, “women don’t tend to like conflict, comedy often comes from conflict, so that’s probably why we (or others) have so few female projects.”
Well, if Sono Patel’s new adult animated comedy Ginger Snaps is any indication of what women can do in this genre, he’s going to be eating those words heavy with salt and pepper.
For those that don’t know, Ginger Snaps is a brand-new series from Sono Patel (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend) that follows a girl scout-like troupe crossed with Narcos in that the girls run their operation very much like a drug cartel. The troupe is run by “Calista” (voiced by Lauren Lapkus) who kind of has a team of minions under her thumb ready to do her evil bidding in an effort to keep cookie-selling operations running smooth. Her No.2 “Rachel” (voiced by Cree Summer) acts as a sort of consigliere though the two have a complicated history that eventually reaches a boiling point by the time we get to the final episode especially when a potential replacement for Calista shows up in the form of “Kishy”(voiced by Aparna Nancherla ). Oh, yea, not only is Calista ruthless to her friends, but she also treats her family like ass, too which includes her mother “Vivian” (voiced by Maria Bamford) and her sister “Apple” (voiced by Ashley Tisdale).
For fans of the Cartoon Network iteration of MAD you may well recognize the art direction of the series as it is produced by Blue Ribbon Content who do an excellent job of designing characters that look like they could fit RIGHT in with Dipper and Mabel Pines by way of Gravity Falls only to be served in a series that has humor that if put on TV would be ABC’s direct challenge to Family Guy in terms of edgy dialogue. Don’t believe me? This Calista girl makes “Stewie” look ordinary and is just as much of a psychopath as South Park’s “Cartman”. Whether it’s convincing a girl with cancer to join her team so as to exploit her illness for the benefit of selling cookies or putting the heads of horses in lockers at school, Calista…IS…NUTS!
The show is hilariously scripted and features arcs that would make fans of Netflix animated comedies like F is for Family or BoJack Horseman feel right at home only served in much shorter run times with an average of under 10 minutes a pop, an allotted time that I think would be perfect for the network to open up a late-night block of short-form animation buoyed by Ginger Snaps. Actually, the main drawback of the series IS the fact that I wish it was a tad longer because there are a couple of plot holes here and there that don’t quite add up by the time we get to the finale, but other than that this show is pretty damn good.
I think ABC would be insane to keep this show on ABCD (“ABC Digital) and instead break a few rules by putting it on broadcast TV. As I mentioned before, if Ginger Snaps were put on a night of the week in which FOX wasn’t running their animated comedies, you could have a winner here for a fraction of the budget in what was put into the hot garbage that was Imaginary Mary. And somewhere out there, Mike Lazzo’s gonna be watching this digital tour-de-force with a side of Nike.
Watch Ginger Snaps here.