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Duckman: The Complete Series DVD Review

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“Duckman” has its fans.

Way back in the 90’s, “Duckman” was one of the few adult animated series to air on TV. The series, which aired on USA Network and lasted 4 seasons, follows the exploits of the titular character (AKA Eric T. Duckman) who is (as the credits say) a “Private Dick/Family Man.” Duckman is not your average main character, however, as he’s angry, rude, a scaredy-cat, egotistical, and an overall general irritance to others. Rounding out the cast of characters are his 3 sons Ajax, Charles and Mambo (a two-headed duck to be precise), his sister-in-law Bernice, his mother in law Grandma-Ma (who basically farts all the time), and his work partner/friend Cornfed. Throughout the 71 episodes, the plots involve family outings, surgeries, the villainous King Chicken, a security system, a reality show, dates, Duckman’s allegedly dead family and wife, Duckman’s sexual depravity, vacations, aliens, politics, illnesses, Coolio, an office intern, Bernice’s new jobs, a baseball team, a mail-order bride, and more. Of course, since he is a PI, there are also episodes devoted to cases involving murders, conspiracy, and a missing painting.

Based on the comic book series by Everett Peck (who also co-developed the series), the “Duckman” has developed quite a following over the years and has become a cult favorite. I only wish I could share that enthusiasm. While others find the show to be a hilarious and sometimes violent animated series with biting satire, I could never get past the frankly annoying main character. Even though he is supposed to be an intentionally whiny jackass, he irritates me to no end. Maybe it’s the loud volume of his voice by actor Jason Alexander or maybe it’s that the character is near insufferable, but I just can’t connect to this show as a whole. Had the show been about the monotone and amusing Cornfed (who is easily the most appealing character), I might have been more of a fan.

On the plus side, there are episodes that are worth a gander here. The “Star Trek” spoof “Where No Duckman Has Gone Before” elicits some laughs, the noir spoof “Noir Gang,” is a clever parody, and the comedy team spoof” Haunted Society Plumbers” is memorable (and it also features a cameo from Homer Simpson).

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 4:3. How does it look? Don’t expect a restoration or anything here. What you will get is a decent enough transfer for this stylistic animated series.

Audio Track: Dolby Digital Stereo. How does it sound? In a word- adequate.

Extras: Promo spots, an involving commentary on the pilot by Everett Peck and Jason Alexander, an interactive extra titled “Six Degrees of Duckman,” a character centric featurette titled “What The Hell Are You Staring At?: A Special Investigation Inside Duckman, Private Dick/Family Man,” the self-explanatory “Designing Duckman: Inside The Creation Of An Anti-Hero From Comic Book Character To Screen Star,” storyboard scenes from “I, Duckman,” video of the original animatic drawings and animation from the unaired pilot and a collection of animations/tests called “Walk Cycles, Expressions and Pencil Tests.”

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February 12, 2018 - Posted by | DVD review | ,

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