Cool McCool - the complete series
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208 of 431 readers found this review helpful.
Kids these days catch a lot of hell for their short attention spans. Information flows at them so fast that it’s no small wonder that they look in 10 different directions at once for input. But remember fellow fogies, there was a time when you were young that sitting through an animated story longer than 8 minutes was a trial. Does Bullwinkle & Rocky ring a bell?
“Cool McCool” comes complete – an entire series in slim DVD cases…just how I like it. No volumes to collect, or ‘fans choice’ – one box to capture them all. I had never seen Cool McCool before, so it was refreshing to come into an old cartoon without that darned nostalgia getting in the way.
Our hero, Cool McCool, is a secret agent with sweet gadgets like James Bond, but is a bumbling buffoon, ala Maxwell Smart; but he always comes out on top. The villains read like comic book castoffs, stealing, robbing and holding the planet ransom for insane sums (like a whole million dollars – that’s nuts!) It’s up to Cool and his transforming car to save us all.
The cartoons average around 8 minutes, just enough to introduce the bad guy, establish the scenario, confront said villain, defeat him and bring peace to the world. Short enough that there was nary a chance to be distracted.
The show itself is very well written (and created by that guru of heroes Bob Kane). The bad puns fly every few seconds, and at worst deserve a groan. The animation is on par with the similar releases of the late 60s – very little movement, static backgrounds and muted colors. But you know, with color TV still a fairly new invention at the time, there wasn’t a lot to bitch about.
“Cool McCool” doesn’t pioneer the animated genre and doesn’t define a generation, but sometimes just being entertaining is good enough. The most interesting aspect is comparing a relatively short run cartoon to today’s animation. Since “McCool” is encapsulated in the 60s and never had to transform as its audience changed, we get a pure vision of what was acceptable 40 years ago vs. the Saturday morning fare of today that’s filtered, purified and pasteurized so nothing is left to chance. You’ll never see a cigar chewing boss today – with actual smoke billowing out from his chair! Or even a hero pointing a gun at his face trying to pick which trigger answers the built in phone, and it goes off! Crazy!
“McCool” is good, simple fun, and a nice reminder of the non-Disney roots of animation. If you ever chuckled at Dudley Dooright or rushed home to watch Get Smart!, you might want to pick yourself up a copy. 3 ½ cans out of 5.
Added: Friday, March 09, 2007
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