Halloween is right around the corner once again. That means that lots of people are looking for entertainment for their annual parties. This includes parents looking for entertainment for their children’s parties. Next Tuesday, Nickelodeon and Shout! Factory will release one more new fun release for the whole family that is a perfect fit for those parties in the form of Aaahh!!! Real Monsters: The Complete Series.
Aaahh!!! Real Monsters: The Complete Series is great fun for both new young audiences and for those that grew up with the series. It is one of Nickelodeon’s famed Nicktoons that brought Arlene Klasky and Klasky Csupo to fame during the 1990s and early 2000s. And just as the pair set itself apart from the crowd with its groundbreaking series, Rugrats and the equally innovative Wild Thornberrys, it did so just as much with this series, too. Klasky Csupo showed just how far ahead of its time it was with this series. To an extent, one could argue that it might well have been the influence behind Disney/Pixar’s 2001 movie, Monsters, Inc. That’s because the movie in question didn’t come into being until at least three years after Aaahh!!! Real Monsters had ended in 1998. This is just one part of what makes the series so important for any fan of Nickelodeon’s golden era. In direct connection, audiences will appreciate the show’s writing. Again, a comparison to both Klasky Csupo’s other cartoons and to Monsters, Inc. is necessary to show how far ahead of the times and quick the writing was in this series. A third factor to consider in deciding whether or not to buy or order this new set is its packaging. Yet again, Shout! Factory and Nickelodeon have set the bar with another box set’s packaging in this collection. What can be said that hasn’t already been said about that? But that’s a good thing. And it seals the deal on what is another great trip back in time for any purist Nicktoons Nostalgic.
Klasky Csupo was the Pixar of the television world from the early 1990s to the early 2000s. That is thanks to its long strain of original hit cartoons that would be the backbone of Nickelodeon’s Nicktoons programming. Those hits included the likes of Rugrats, The Wild Thornberrys, and what would end up being the studio’s last Nicktoon, All Grown Up. Throughout all of the cartoons created by the studio, each one was entirely different from the last. And Aahhh!!! Real Monsters was one that definitely stood out. It stood out among both other Nicktoons and other cartoons in general. The only other studio doing anything remotely similar at the time was DiC Enterprises with its claymation based Bump in the Night. Between the two, Klasky Csupo’s cartoon still stood out and in a good way, as it lasted well past the latter of the two toons. No one at the time had thought of the concept of a trio of young monsters living in a dump, learning how to scare humans. Even the characters themselves were original. One look at David Eccles’ Krumm makes one wonder if he in fact wasn’t an influence behind Mike Wazowski. Both of these factors (and others) show just how far ahead of its time this series was.
Aahhh!!! Real Monsters was well ahead of its time in so many ways. From the general story and characters to other smaller aspects, its cast and writers proved that in so many ways. In direct connection, it is just as impressive thanks to its writing. From learning how to scare and avoiding the wrath of their teacher, The Gromble (Gregg Berger—Garfield & Friends, The Angry Beavers, The Garfield Show) to trying to escape capture by Simon the Monster Hunter (Jim Belushi—Life According to Jim, Hey Arnold!, the Adventures of Jimmy Neutron), the writers found so many ways to keep the show fresh through all four of its seasons. There was even a hunt for a pail that sends Ickis on a wild chase that will leave audiences laughing. It’s one more of so many wonderfully entertaining moments that make this new set so fun for anyone that grew up with the series and for their kids, too.
The writing and general ingenuity of Aaahh!!! Real Monsters went a long way toward making it one more of Klasky Csupo’s most beloved cartoons. The same can be said of what made it one of the best Nicktoons of Nickelodeon’s golden era. There is one last factor in this new set that fans of the show will appreciate in its upcoming release. That factor is the set’s packaging. Nickelodeon and Shout! Factory have already released both Rocko’s Modern Life and The Angry Beavers in complete series sets. Those sets both managed somehow to contain eight discs in a box that only takes up the space of two standard DVD cases on any DVD rack. The same can be said of this set’s box, too. Each of the set’s discs are placed on either side of their own “plate” within the case. As large as it may make the box seem, it actually manages to conserve space in the long run. For that, both companies are more than deserving of even more credit. What’s more, this form of packaging also protects the discs from being scratched up. So it serves as a double whammy in the best possible manner. Keeping this in mind along with the original writing and the generally original concept behind the show, audiences are presented with another welcome shining release from Nickelodeon and Shout! Factory. One can only hope that from here, the two companies will eventually strike a deal to release Klasky Csupo’s other classic Nicktoons next. Aaahh!!! Real Monsters: The Complete Series will be available online and in stores Tuesday, October 8th. It can be ordered direct online from Shout! Factory’s store at http://www.shoutfactory.com/node/218263. More information on this and other releases from Shout! Factory and Nickelodeon is available on the official Shout! Factory website, http://www.shoutfactory.com and Shout! Factory Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/shoutfactoryofficial. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.