Rocko’s Modern Life Series Box Set Is A Modern Hit

Courtesy:  Shout! Factory/Nickelodeon

Courtesy: Shout! Factory/Nickelodeon

Shout! Factory and Nickelodeon have completed the course for one of the best of the network’s original Nicktoons.  On Tuesday, February 26th, the two companies will release Rocko’s Modern Life: The Complete Series on DVD.  The set contains all four of the show’s seasons in their entirety on eight discs.  This set is a must for any true hardcore Nicktoons Nostalgic.  It is without a doubt one of the best box sets of 2013 all the way around.  From its packaging to its episodes and even the new original artwork by series creator Joe Murray, this brand new upcoming set is everything for which fans of Rocko’s Modern Life have waited for so long.

Rocko’s Modern Life: The Complete Series is a winner from the very moment that it’s picked up in store or ordered online.  Shout! Factory has shown once more why it continues to be the leader in releasing box sets with this set’s packaging.  Rather than place the series into a large, bulky box set, all eight discs are placed onto opposing sides of four separate inserts.  Placing the discs in such fashion gives each disc its own backing, thus helping to increase its longevity.  Adding to the longevity factor is a small “lip” placed at the top and bottom of each insert.  The “lip” allows for each disc to be smoothly removed and replaced safely.  And being on separate inserts, audiences can flip through each insert effortlessly to get to the disc that they want to watch.  Being that the set includes eight discs, the box overall is a little larger than the standard double disc.  But in comparison to the size of other multi-disc boxes still being released today, the overall packaging is still a space saver for any Nicktoons Nostalgic’s DVD rack.

The packaging of this new upcoming box set is a major positive. The episodes are just as much a positive.  As already noted, all four original seasons of this modern classic are contained in this box set in their entirety.  And the transfers to DVD are highly impressive.  The quality of each episode’s footage has been fully maintained.  What’s more, now that the show’s original audiences are all grown up, the show’s episodes will present even more enjoyment as they will get many of the jokes presented.  They’re like a fine wine, for lack of better comparison.  They’re that much more of a joy now that the original audiences can look back on them with a whole different take on them.  And making them even better, those same audiences can now share these laugh riot episodes with their own children, thus preserving the legacy of this outrageous cartoon for a whole new generation of fans. 

In relation to the jokes and the quality of the footage contained on these discs, the original hand drawn animation simply cannot be ignored here.  This has already been noted with the previously released first three seasons of Rocko’s Modern Life.  Having all four seasons together now, audiences can really see how the hand drawn animation served to give this cartoon its own original identity.  This was really a landmark of cartoons during the 1990s.  It’s something that has by and large been lost in the Twenty-first century.  Given, there are still hand drawn cartoons out there.  But for the most part, this generation’s cartoons are created via computer.  It makes them sterile and unoriginal.  In comparison, this show’s animation serves as a reminder of everything that once made cartoons great, and hopefully will again one day both for the show’s original viewers and today’s younger audiences.

Staying on the same vein of hand drawn animation, fans that pick up this new set will even be presented with brand new hand drawn animation both inside and outside the set.  The new box art was drawn by series creator Joe Murray.  It adds that much more vintage feel to the set, thus making it that much more special and a must have for the show’s original viewers.  This new eight-disc set will be available in stores and online Tuesday, February 26th.  To sweeten the deal for fans, the first 200 who order their copies of this new box set at Shout! Factory’s online store at http://www.shoutfactory.com will receive an 18” x 24” autographed lithograph of an all new original illustration from Joe Murray himself.  Fans can pre-order the set online at http://www.shoutfactory.com/?q=node/216544.

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Rocko’s Modern Life Season Three is a riot

Courtesy: Shout! Factory/Nickelodeon

90′s Nicktoons Nostalgics, stand up and “shout”!  Shout! Factory and Nickelodeon are on the home stretch with Rocko’s Modern Life.  This classic cartoon lasted a total of four seasons during its run on Nickelodeon.  And on July 3rd, the penultimate season will hit store shelves courtesy of the good people at Shout! Factory and Nickelodeon.  Season Three is rife with all the laughs that fans had in the show’s first two seasons.  In Season Three, fans get to see Rocko investigate what he thinks is Ed Bighead’s murder.  Also series creator Joe Murray takes on the barrage of sensational talk shows that pollute the airwaves.  And Rocko has to face his nail biting problem in another episode.

In “Ed is Dead” series creator Joe Murray spoofs Alfred Hitchcock’s classic thriller, “Rear Window.”  The episode opens with the Bigheads working in their yard one day.  Ed and Bev are arguing over how little work Ed is doing.  That night, Rocko swears he sees Bev use a trowel to kill Ed through the window of the couple’s house.  When he sees her bury something in the yard and clean the trowel afterward, Rocko’s sure Bev killed Ed.  So he goes into the Bigheads’ house to investigate what happened.  When he runs into Bev, she invites Rocko to stay for dinner.  But he freaks out and runs out of the house.  Later, when Rocko confronts Bev, she reveals that she was actually working on a sculpture of Ed, and that was what she buried.  So Rocko asks Bev where Ed is, it turns out that he was out getting a wart removed.  Though Rocko thinks that Ed was getting his tonsils taken out.  The whole thing ends full circle as audiences see the silhouettes of Ed and Bev kissing through their window.

“Ed is Dead” is just one of Season Three’s funny episodes.  Another example of what makes this season so funny is the episode, “Speaking Terms.”  Rocko and Heffer find themselves on the “Nosey” show after a big fight about Rocko’s birthday.  One could argue that this episode even went so far as to spoof the queen of daytime talk herself, Oprah Winfrey, considering the joke about Nosey’s weight issue.  The “twice told tale” format of the episode is nothing new to television.  That aside, it’s a tried and true story format.  Hearing Rocko and Heffer offer their own take on what happened regarding Rocko’s birthday is funny both times.  And of course the reaction from both the audience and Nosey to the pair being friends again after Heffer’s mother chides them for fighting offers its own share of laughs, too.  The real kicker, though, comes at the episodes end, when Filbert shows up with some aliens.  Audiences will have to see the episode to get that joke.

“Speaking Terms” has plenty of great jokes that will make audiences laugh nonstop.  It’s just one more piece of the puzzle that makes Season Three so fun.  As fun as that episode and “Ed is Dead” are, there’s at least one more episode that stands out as one of the season’s best.  That episode is “Tooth & Nail.”  “Tooth & Nail” opens as Rocko, Heffer, and Filbert are eating out at the Scratch & Sniff Restaurant.  Patrons have to order by scratching and sniffing items on the menu.  the problem is that Rocko can’t scratch the menu because his fingernails aren’t long enough.  Heffer confronts Rocko, telling him he has a nail biting problem.  Rocko denies that.  What makes this funny is that Rocko had just gotten through going after Heffer, telling him that he had an eating problem.  It’s a prime example of art imitating life.  Rocko ends up having to take a twelve step program to stop biting his nails.  However, when the “twelve steps” discover he was using them for such a simple problem, half of them leave for Vegas, telling Rocko that he only needs six steps for this problem.  The sixth and final step spoofs “A Christmas Carol.”  It’s a Ghost of Christmas Future style figure that shows Rocko what he would become if he didn’t overcome his nail biting problem.  This cures Rocko.  And just as in “A Christmas Carol”, it all turns out to be supposedly a dream.  The whole thing wraps nicely with the remaining six steps going bust in Vegas.  They end up on the curb outside a casino, with two of the “steps” arguing over whether one of them has a gambling problem.  It brings the episode full circle as it ends.

The episodes listed here are just a small sampling of what fans can expect from Rocko’s Modern Life Season Three.  However, audiences will find their own favorites on the double disc set.  And that’s what makes this show so great.  Even years after it ended its run, the episodes from this classic episode are still relevant and funny for audiences of all ages.  And now, thanks to Shout! Factory and Nickelodeon fans will get to re-live every episode from Season Three July 3rd.  

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