What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that although this reality TV spoof is a cartoon, it's not for kids. The purposely stereotypical characters are irreverent and sarcastic and make fun of everything. This means that almost every episode includes various slurs and situations in which the characters insult one another, as well as people of different ethnicities, religious groups, and sexual orientations. Iffy language and frequent sexual shenanigans are also on the hit list.
What's the story?
In DRAWN TOGETHER, eight dysfunctional cartoon characters with archetypical personalities are forced to live, hang out, and generally deal with one another -- much like the shows The Real World and Big Brother. There's Captain Hero (voiced by Jess Harnell), a muscular "Superman" who's a hard-drinking, egotistical womanizer; sheltered Princess Clara (Tara Strong); manipulative Betty Boop look-alike Toot Braunstein (Strong again); obnoxious party animal Spanky Ham (Adam Carolla); lone African-American character Foxxy Love (Cree Summer); attention seeking SpongeBob SquarePants-esque Wooldoor Sockbat (James Arnold Taylor); closeted pretty boy Xandir (Jack Plotnick); and loner Ling-Ling (Abbey McBride), a Pokemon-inspired character. The roommates deal with everyday problems. In one episode, for example, Toot obsesses that she isn't pretty enough after Wooldoor calls her fat. But more often, the issues on this show are exaggerated -- in another episode, Captain Hero pops steroids to ensure he crosses the AIDS Walk finish line first.
Is it any good?
Because Drawn Together is a cartoon aimed at adults, it tends to push the envelope a lot further than live-action reality shows, particularly where sex and sexuality are involved. Characters' sexuality is constantly being examined and challenged, kissing scenes are exaggerated (viewers see tongues rotating and hyper-flailing), and in one episode, a flashback shows Captain Hero being gangbanged by a group of fraternity brothers at a party.
Anyone expecting a feel-good animated show when they tune into Drawn Together will be sorely disappointed. The series -- which sometimes feels like a strange, hit-and-miss hybrid of South Park and The Surreal Life -- can be funny, but it's definitely for mature audiences only.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about reality TV shows. Why are they entertaining? Do producers follow a specific formula to garner laughs (or gasps of shock)? Why do regular people go on reality TV shows?
What kind of values do reality shows promote? How does this series mock those shows? What is it trying to accomplish?
When does spoofing something cross the line? Are stereotypes ever OK?