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TV Review: Johnny Test

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Hi there, it’s the Raucous Rocker. You know, despite the fact I am in my mid teens, I still enjoy watching cartoons. And I don’t mean cartoons like the ones on Adult Swim; I mean the cartoons they show every day on channels like Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon. I don’t know why I do, some of them are very nostalgic, some are funny and some…some are just time wasters. I watch shows for teens and adults too, but sometimes nothing beats just sitting around watching cartoons out of the corner of my eye while practicing the guitar during commercials. Yeah, that’s what I do, so what?

So there’s a little background for you. Generally, the cartoons I enjoy the most are the classics like Looney Tunes and Tom and Jerry, and it always kills me how newer cartoons are not only unable to surpass the humor of the older classics but cannot even boast better animation; I mean seriously, take a look at any of the new shows on Cartoon Network, I guarantee you that you will not find a single one that is better looking than Looney Tunes. It’s like they know they can’t do better than Looney Tunes so they don’t even try. Well with that attitude, of course you’re not going to beat Looney Tunes!

Okay I think you get it; most new cartoons suck, and anyway, I’m getting off track here. I came here today to review one mind numbingly bad show that just does everything wrong. The concept has been done to death, the characters are bland and uninteresting; every episode has exactly the same pacing and structure…it’s just a mess. And that isn’t even the worst part, the worst part is how long this piece of worthless half-hour television schedule filler has been running; I’ve seen shows this bad plenty of times, but they often get cancelled after one or two seasons. This sodomy of the human senses is in its fifth season and has been running since 2005! WHY?

Where to begin…okay, this show has arguably the worst protagonist in kids television history; heck, he’s up there with Bart Simpson for the most obnoxious child in any cartoon, but in Bart’s defense, he can be somewhat likeable, whereas this kid…yeah, he’s never likeable. He’s like the epitome of everything a parent hopes their son won’t turn out to be once he reaches his preteen years: selfish, uncaring, rude, careless, lazy…the list goes on and on. Oh, and did I mention the disturbing lack of laughter from everyone watching when he appears on the screen? Even Wikipedia, a supposedly factual, non-biased website says, and I quote “troublesome and widely disrespectful bratty kid who is generally the cause of problems in the city.” If Wikipedia says it, it must be true!

So I’m not going to focus on any one episode because, as I said earlier, they’re all pretty much identical. First our character roll call: we got Johnny, the super schmuck himself and Dukey, his talking dog with a really annoying voice (sadly, he is the best character on the show). Then there are Susan and Mary, Johnny’s 13-year old sisters who happen to be super geniuses. Hmm, kid geniuses capable of designing technology hundreds of years more advanced than current science? Where have we heard that before? What’s that, they’ve already had several cartoon series and countless movies about the exact same thing? You don’t say!

Okay, so a typical episode goes like this: Johnny’s being a brat and decides he wants something. And since he has super genius sisters (who for some reason aren’t smart enough to just plant a mind-control chip into his brain and be done with it), he decides to pester them until he gets what he wants.

Obviously, they give in and he gets what he wants, only to get in some massive trouble that he and the other characters have to figure out how to get out of. That’s it. About once in fifty episodes, they’ll mix up the structure a little bit, but it comes so late that no one cares, we’re all too busy praying for it to end and hoping that something decent will come on. Like the Total Drama series, why did they end that? To show us more of this?

Oh, and I mustn’t forget that this show has an awful theme song…it’s one of the worst I’ve ever heard. It’s some really bad rock group with a singer who makes Justin Bieber sound like Bruce Dickenson…okay, maybe that’s a little harsh, but you get what I’m saying. The only show I can think of with a worse theme song was that suicide-inducing Fanboy and Chum Chum show, which was pretty much just thirty seconds of people making random annoying noises into the microphone…just listen to it, you’ll see what I mean.

So I’ve covered most of this putrid show, what’s left? Oh yeah, animation. Like I said earlier, this is one of those shows that can’t even outdo Looney Tunes animation; that’s pretty sad if you can’t outdraw a show done like sixty years ago! To be fair, it’s decent by Cartoon Network standards, but uninspired. Nothing really makes the characters stand out and everything is choppy. About half the characters (mostly minor ones) look like the animators designed a single butt-ugly model with a triangular nose and just pasted different faces and clothing onto them, occasionally altering the height or girth a little but not so much you don’t notice. Pretty sloppy there guys; I know they’re minor characters but come on, put some effort into your creation!

So that’s Johnny Test. All I can say is just be thankful I’m ending it now; I could probably go on for pages and pages about how asinine this show is. It’s not so much that they made a bad show but just the fact that this show could run for five seasons, two more than Jimmy Neutron which was a far superior show…and it’s still going. The characters have no interesting personality traits, every episode is the same, Johnny is a jackass, the animation is sloppy, the writing…I wouldn’t been surprised if the animators had just grabbed their eight- year-old kids and said “Okay son, I need you to write me an eleven minute episodes about an obnoxious kid, his talking dog and two genius sisters!”

Yes, the writing is on par with what an eight-year old could come up with. The only thing about this show I actually find myself occasionally interested in is the dog because I guess they gave him to the only person on the cast who knew how to make a semi-interesting character. However, a talking dog can only take a show so far, and as far as humor, he doesn’t offer much. Bottom line? Stay away from this show, far, far away. If it’s on, watch Nickelodeon instead. And if nothing’s on there, turn off the TV and go outside, it’ll do you some good.

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About Raucous Rocker

  • Raucous Rocker

    ^I like Tom and Jerry a lot too, I was just using Loony Tunes as an example. The review’s focus was on Johnny Test, I wasn’t even considering Tom and Jerry vs. Loony Tunes.

  • Stephen R Treadwell

    I like T&J much better than LT! It’s cuter & has better music & it’s way more interesting!

  • Stephen Rhodes Treadwell

    Tom & Jerry has better looking animation than Looney Tunes.

  • Nissl

    Good review. This helped me understand why I haven’t watched Cartoon Network in years. You should give FiM a shot if you haven’t already. Some of the best animation going (PPG team) and lots of classic slapstick bits, especially later in the season.

  • Ha ha, I love the ad for the show at the bottom of the page. Irony…

    Also, I laughed at your “butt-ugly” bit. Love the way you write, Raucous.