Sunday, October 30, 2011

Episode 39, Part 1: Doug's Great Beet War

This episode starts with a fantasy. Doug says that Bluffington School has declared war and the commander in chief's first order was to punish the school traitor. Of course that means Roger is punishing Doug. He's facing a firing squad.

I can't wait to see how Doug ended up facing death for being a traitor. Well, not death. Paint. The firing squad throws buckets of paint on him.

Shouldn't have been a traiter, Doug.

The Bluffington School is working on their float for the All County School Parade and they think they've finally made a float that will beat the Moody School in the float competition. The Bluffington School float features Mr. Beet.

Mr. Beet talks, and his arms move, and he can pull off the leaves on top of his head and spray juice everywhere.

This is impressive, but also a little crazy. I don't know if Doug came up with the idea, but a giant talking beet that rips off part of its body to spray its juice out is a little too...I don't know. Suicidal? I guess it fits that a sentient beet would be suicidal in the face of the hopelessness it must feel when confronted with the reality of his beet brothers and sisters. If he can't save them from being in a salad, he can at least spray his blood on their murderers so they know the score. Anyway...

The beet juice fountain malfunctions and sprays uncontrollably. It's still impressive though. I mean...well done, Al and Moo.

On the morning before the parade, Skeeter and Doug are walking with open buckets of paint when some assholes bust through the gym doors, knocking them to the ground.

Who is going to clean that up?

They busted through the door because someone apparently stole Mr. Beet.

I don't know why that warrants such urgency at such an inopportune time. Were they waiting for Doug and Skeeter to get in front of the doors to make it more dramatic?

Roger comes out and immediately accuses Doug of knowing who did it because Judy goes to Moody School. And Moody School did it, so Doug must know they did it. Roger's not using a lot of logic here. He's pissed. WHATEVER! He rounds up a mob and some weapons.

He whips them up into a frenzy and gets everyone to agree to go to Moody School to wreck their float. Doug points out that Judy couldn't have stolen Mr. Beet since she was home all night last night. That's when Roger calls him a traitor, based on the assumption that Doug told Judy about Mr. Beet. This angry mob just won't listen to reason.

They're about to throw paint on Doug when he asks them how they're going to get into Moody School. A mob won't get past the front gate with all their weapons and shit. Doug volunteers to sneak in by himself to find out if they even have Mr. Beet. The mob assumes he will also help them wreck their float. Doug tries to tell them he'll call them and let them know if they actually stole Mr. Beet, but they cut him off and assume he will call them and tell them where their float is so they can quickly come in and help destroy it. Doug is such a brave hero.

So this is Moody School...

And Doug's disguise looks like this...

Skeeter says Doug looks like a clown. Porkchop is wearing that hat because he is helping Doug with this dangerous mission. The hat is his disguise.

Doug crouches behind the fence so no one at the Moody School can see him and this transitions into a wonderful fantasy.

Rambodoug slides on his belly under the front gate and is spotted immediately by a guard in a tower. He might as well have blown an air horn. Even in his fantasy, he sucks at sneaking around. The guard calls in more guards and they start running at Doug so he rips the guard tower down with his bare hands. The tower falls on the guards rushing at him.

He brushes the dust off, ready to kill anyone that gets in his way.

In reality, the guard at the gate is playing Tetris and hardly notices Doug and Porkchop. When he does notice them, he only tells Doug that pets aren't allowed on campus, after calling him a clown. This seems reasonable, and if that's the only objection the guard has, you might as well just go along with it. It's not like Doug really needs Porkchop anyway. He's just a dog.

Actually, they just run off and hide.

After the guard walks past them, Judy and her friends throw some garbage in on Doug and Porkchop. That Swiss cheese box is apparently a trash can. The world's shittiest trash can.

Doug overhears the Marge Simpson there say "yeah, Q's big new beet will totally change the way people in this town look at floats." He concludes that this means they did steal Mr. Beet. After they leave, Doug and Porkchop climb out of the trash and attempt to follow them to the art lab where the float is.

They fail miserably. Inside the school, they hear a door shut and assume that's the one Judy and her friends used so they run through it. The lights go out, a siren blares and a spotlight shines on Doug. Busted.

Then some asshole starts yelling "whoa" and "stop" and "kill the sound effects."

They just wandered into dress rehearsal for some weird bullshit play. The director is pissed because the clown isn't supposed to show up until act 3. Porkchop kindly asks Death for directions to the art lab.

Doug never would've thought to just ask someone for a little help. No, his dog had to do it. As they are leaving, the director points out that Porkchop is a very gifted dog.

Outside the door to the art lab, Doug goes back into the fantasy. He's Rambo again, and now the door is steel and framed with razor wire. Doug rips the door off his hinges and throws it aside. He runs in and is caught by a muscular Judy almost immediately.

Just Pathetic. Judy takes him over to General Q who tells her to throw him in Mr. Beet with the others. They've also caught Al and Moo apparently, and they are slowly being lowered into Mr. Beet where I guess they are going to be boiled alive in beet juice.

In reality, Doug just walks through the door to the art lab to find more doors. The art lab is just another building full of rooms. They start to explore different rooms to find the one with the float in it and some of them are amazing. There's one with a guy floating, one with a guy using a guillotine to cut a car in half, one with a team of people painting with their bodies, and my favorite...

...girl playing the watermelon. I don't know what to say about this school. If it wasn't "Moody School for the Gifted" I would not assume that kids were sent there because they were particularly intelligent. Maybe they were gifted with special needs.

Someone down the hall sees them and yells, "there he is! Stop! Stop!" So they run again. Doug immediately loses Porkchop and hides in a room. He looks back out into the hallway for Porkchop and then Judy angrily asks he what he's doing there. He accidentally found the right room and she's pissed he's wearing her clothes and wig.

Q then asks Judy to help them cover the float so they can take it to the parade. Doug asks to use the phone so he can call his friends to come retrieve Mr. Beet, because he's not listening to anything they're saying. As he's waiting for one of his friends to answer the phone, the Moody School kids start taking their float away. Not on Doug's watch!

He's risking his life for a robotic beet fountain. He tells them to hand over Mr. Beet or suffer the consequences. Q is confused. Doug starts trying to pull the sheet off and Judy and Q finally start fighting back. They don't want it unveiled too early. They end up in a weird tug-o-war over the sheet as the other Moody Students continue to pull the float. I don't know why Judy and Q don't tell them to stop for a second while they deal with the shithead clown. Then Skeeter calmly says, "yo Doug! *honk honk* Watcha doin?"

Stunned, Doug lets go of the sheet and Judy and Q fall back ripping the sheet off their float.

I want to know how Doug thought Mr. Beet was under that sheet. Apparently Doug can't tell the shape of something if it's covered with a sheet. That's probably some sort of weird, rare mental disorder, but I don't know. I know most people in that situation would see the Moody School float covered by a sheet and think, "oh, that's clearly just a rectangular prism, and clearly not a giant beet with arms." Not Doug.

Al and Moo just took Mr. Beet home to fix it after it malfunctioned and ruined the gym floor. Why didn't they tell anyone? They're Al and Moo. Doug asks them about the "Great Beet War" and wrecking Moody School's float and him being a traitor. Roger's goons shrug it off as a false alarm. Roger says, "I told ya I was joking, but NOOOOO, you wouldn't listen!"

The parade goes on and Doug doesn't bother to mention who won the competition. I guess after all that it just didn't matter. Writing in his journal, he decides there must be a lesson in this. He writes down, "war is stupid." Then he asks, "right, Porkchop? Porkchop?" It cuts to Porkchop dancing around on stage in that bullshit play from earlier. That director really liked him.

Doug is all over this place in this one. His fantasies are hilarious. In both of his Rambo fantasies, he is discovered or caught immediately. Why didn't he imagine he was Smash Adams? Smash Adams is never so incompetent. Why did Porkchop go with him into Moody School? It's totally unnecessary. If he hadn't had Porkchop, the guard wouldn't have bothered him. He was playing Tetris and clearly doesn't give a shit about doing a good job. Because Porkchop was with him, he had to hide in a trash can. Again, why couldn't Doug tell Mr. Beet wasn't under the sheet just from the shape? He really did just get too immersed in this war fantasy.

In the end, Roger says he tried to tell Doug he was just joking, but when? You can assume Roger is lying, but maybe Doug is. As always, we're only seeing Doug's side of the story. It seems like maybe the other kids knew Al and Moo took Mr. Beet and just decided to play a joke on Doug and he just refused to accept the truth and got carried away into his own incompetent fantasy. In Doug's version, he could've called their bluff when they said they were going to wreck Moody School's float. Just let them go do it while he goes to the Honkerburger. He also could've just said he was going to Moody School and then gone to the Honkerburger. Let the angry mob sit and wait for nothing. Go tell an adult and let them handle it.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Episode 38, Part 2: Doug's Garage Band

This episode begins with Skeeter, Doug and Porkchop walking down the street making a lot of noise while singing Bangin' on a Trash Can. The guy working at Racoon Records is very annoyed by their noise. In the window of the store they see an interview with Chap Lipman where he talks about the origins of The Beets and how he started playing music. He started by hitting a bowl or a cat, and his mom told him to stop. It was the same with the other guys and so they went into his shed and started hitting things until they came out with their hit Killer Tofu. So naturally, Skeeter and Doug now have to do that. They are now a garage band!

Returning to their Bangin' on a Trash Can further annoys the record store employee because he's on the phone and Doug and Skeeter are apparently the loudest thing ever.

Might be related to Arnold from Hey Arnold! The hair...

After the title screen, we return to a fantasy where an older Doug and Skeeter are being interviewed by the same woman that was interviewing Chap Lipman.

Look at Skeeter's long, orange hair. Not a black kid. Anyway, the interview is taking place in Doug's garage where they started and where they still go to write all their songs. It's where they get their inspiration. Doug demonstrates with a plunger.

He sings, "WHOA! Plunger, Plunger! WHOA! Plunger, Plunger!"

"You know? Like that."

After the fantasy, Doug and Skeeter are already recording Bangin' on a Trash Can. Porkchop is their producer.

Skeeter is getting amazing sounds out of a bunch of junk. I've used junk before and it's very difficult to get anything useable out of it, but Porkchop does a terrific job here with the tape recorder.

At the Honkerburger, Beebe expresses doubts about their band. They tell her about how they just recorded their first song. They're going to send it off to some record producers. That's when Beebe says her cousin's friend has a friend who knows somebody in the record business. She thinks his name is Jimmy Spackle. She's going to ask to get him to listen to their tape.

They are excited. Doug narrates, "this is the big break we've been waiting for all morning."

That night, Beebe shows up at Doug's door with good news. Jimmy Spackle loved their tape. He's actually lined up a gig for them to play this weekend too. He wants to see them perform! It's incredible. Oh, but there's a catch.

Beebe has to be in the band. Doug is reluctant. His fantasy only has room for him and Skeeter. Spackle says two guys in a band is too dinky. Beebe convinces him by saying if he wants to be famous, he has to think big. This triggers an amazing fantasy of a music video for Bangin' on a Trash Can. The video is so full of references to popular music videos I can't be bothered to document them all. It's awesome though. There's some Michael Jackson and Talking Heads in there, among other things.

The point of the fantasy is that the bigger you think, the more famous you get. Eventually you'll be selling out stadiums. So, I guess we'll see how that plays out for Doug.

What started as a fantasy triggered during a conversation with Beebe apparently ended as a dream, as it woke Doug up and he had to write down an idea from it.

"Idea: get big suit."

The next day he goes over to Connie's house. She got an A in Home Economics, so he thinks she can make the big suit for him. Patti is there because I guess they are studying together or something. Anyway, Beebe told them about Doug's band already and they are so excited. Doug asks, "then maybe you can help me?" Connie says they'd love to be part of the band! Doug asks, "you play an instrument?" Of course. Patti plays drums. "I've got them in storage someplace."

And Connie plays the autoharp...

She keeps the autoharp under the couch, which is exactly where you keep an instrument you play a lot. There's no way this could turn out bad. Oh, but Skeeter plays drums. They don't need another drummer. Doug decides to think big and comes to the conclusion that two drummers is really big. So Doug has his big suit, and Doug's Garage Band has twp drummers and an autoharp player. That's just not enough to make a truly incredible live show though. Doug wants a light show.

He asks Elmo to produce a light show for the gig. He agrees if Doug lets him in the band. Also, he plays drums. So now the band has three drummers. Now the band needs special effects, and that's where Al and Moo come in.

They'll help Doug if they can be in the band. They both play lead guitar. Doug takes all these new members because it fits under the idea of thinking big. And so here's his band.

I don't know what Larry, Loretta, Fentruck, that other drummer, or the Dancer are doing for the band, but Doug must've asked them for something to have to include them all as members. With 5 drummers, no one else is going to be able to be heard, especially not Connie with her autoharp or Doug with his banjo. Their first attempt to play is a horrible, loud disaster. After some practice they start sounding better but Elmo stops the playing because he wants a drum solo. Doug points out that they've already had two drum solos. Elmo is upset that Lincoln got a solo when he's played 2 years longer than him, and Beebe's keyboard solo sucked because she's terrible. She blames Elmo's lights for being in her eyes. Doug, who has been wearing his big David Byrne suit the entire time, points out that they only have 15 minutes to play. Not everyone can have a solo. They groan and he changes his mind. Everybody can have a solo.

The next day, they arrive at the mansion where their private party gig is and knock on the front door. A snooty butler answers the door and tells them to go around back. That's when Doug sees it's just a kid's birthday party. Doug sounds disappointed but Skeeter loves it. The band before them is the kind of band I want at my next birthday party.

Now it's time for them to set up and play. Doug pumps them up, reminding them it's their big chance.

Doug mentions they were set up within the hour. They get started and it sounds alright, but shit happens. One of the lights falls. Lincoln breaks his drum sticks. Larry's drum set falls apart completely. Connie's autoharp starts spontaneously breaking strings.

Loretta walks across the stage, looking sort of bored. Doug says that somewhere around the eighth drum solo, he realized he wasn't having fun.

They finish the song and all the kids at the party look extremely bored. The guy from Racoon Records walks over to Beebe and tells her that was amazing. Doug says, "I guess the big guy never showed up." Skeeter says that might be a good thing...

Then Beebe brings over the guy from Racoon Records.

Yeah, that guy is Jimmy Spackle. He's just a guy that works at a record store. He loved it. Thought it was radical. I don't like making hipster jokes, but really...he's just a hipster. He wants to talk to Al and Moo because they were "way radical."

Now that Spackle is gone, Beebe has some bad news. She wants to speak to Doug alone. Doug's out of the band. The banjo has no place in rock 'n roll. She asks if he plays any other instruments and he jokes, "drums." She shows excitement, saying Jimmy Spackle thought they could use one more drummer, but he tells her he was just kidding. Beebe is a moron.

Anyway, Doug is happy to be fired from Doug's Garage Band. He says Jimmy Spackle got them one more gig before they broke up. They're going to play at the Yodeling Society's Cakewalk Jamboree. Jimmy Spackle: early 90's hipster.

Oh, and the gig goes horribly, as you can imagine. Why would a yodeling society want to hear a band with no singer?

Look how short Larry is there.

Doug and Skeeter decide they can wait a little while before they become famous. So that's the Bangin' on a Trash Can episode. Doug is the biggest pushover of all time. It would be funny to see the record contract Doug might get though. A record company would eat him alive and make him pay them to do it. He hasn't given up on the dream though, even though he just experienced how unhappy it will make him.

More music that has nothing to do with Doug

Sorry, but...

I have just uploaded another horrible ep called "The 20 Minute Song About Taylor Swift." It is completely ridiculous and insane. Here is the cover, inspired by her hilarious song You Belong With Me.

As usual, you can download the song (which is actually 5 minutes and 17 seconds short of 20 minutes long) for free by putting 0 as the price or stream it.

I apologize for this absurdity and will get right back to writing about Doug tonight.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Episode 38, Part 1: Doug and the Yard of Doom

Patti has invited Doug and Skeeter to the park to throw around her super screaming wacky wizzer. They are having an immeasurable amount of fun throwing this wheezing toy around. They throw it exactly three times before Patti's dad honks his horn at her, reminding her that it's time for her Judo lesson. Pointless. This is why I don't invite friends to hang out when I've got to work in thirty minutes. Before she leaves, they ask if they can borrow the super screaming wacky wizzer while she's gone. Of course they can. She tosses it to Doug, who does a short toss to Skeeter, who tells Doug to "go super long." He throws it and Doug doesn't catch it. It flies over a fence.

Doug quickly volunteers to go get it, but Skeeter warns him that's the Thompson's yard. "Watch out for lady!" Doug promptly walks in anyway and quickly runs back out. He did not retrieve the wizzer.

Race Canyon is a real badass. He is a man. Scared of nothing!

Lions cower in his gaze. His sidekick is Skeetari. He must retrieve the golden wizzer of wacky from the dreaded caves of Thompson. As Race Canyon machetes his way through a jungle full of snakes and other hungry animals, Skeetari points out Race's impressive recent accomplishments. Race made it through lava pits, deadly spikes and minefields without even a scratch! They make their way into a cave, where Skeetari sets off a trap that shoots darts at Race Canyon. He handles this by pulling a dartboard out of his jacket to catch the darts. It probably would've been easier to just step aside than carry around a dartboard just in case a trap throws darts at you, but this isn't my fantasy.

After the darts, Race Canyon and Skeetari finally start approaching the wizzer when Skeetari points out there is one more obstacle. Race asks what the obstacle is and quickly finds out that it's just a really big dog.

Dogs are so much scarier than lions.

After the fantasy, with the help of Skeeter, Doug gets a peek over the fence to see where the wizzer landed. He spots it on the corner of the roof, where Lady is barking and jumping at it.

That dog is fucking huge and strong. Or that house is really short and those gutters are made of tin foil.

Doug says they need to get the wizzer before it falls, and to do that they have to get Lady away from it. Skeeter asks how they do that and Doug has a fantasy.

Race walks into the cave and quickly gives the steak to the dog. Problem solved! Sparkling wizzer retrieved.

After the fantasy, Doug reveals that they couldn't afford steak, so they bought "the next best thing," which is just a squeaky dog toy shaped like a steak. This is reasonable, I suppose. At least it's a dog toy. They toss it to Lady. She goes nuts and scares them. They hide behind the fence in fear until Lady throws the steak-toy back over the fence.

They didn't even try to run into the yard. They obviously didn't distract the dog long enough to get the wizzer, but they didn't even try. Doug does think of a better idea though. He's going to do the old "carrot on a string" trick.

Obviously, they weren't going to use carrots. Dogs don't give a shit about carrots. They're using salami. What they've done here is waste bread. It's a dog, Doug. It doesn't care about sandwiches. It's not going to care that you went the extra mile to slice the salami and put it on bread. But anyway, dangling the salami to distract it really isn't a terrible idea. It actually works too, until Patti comes along.

The moment Doug is distracted by Patti, Lady gets the salami and snaps the line. Skeeter only has a few moments before Lady finishes that salami and notices the intruder. Unfortunately...

They didn't think this through entirely. Why did they just assume Skeeter could jump high enough to reach the roof of a house? If he'd just found a stick like the one Doug has, he could've reached it.

Meanwhile, Patti wants to throw the wizzer around some more. Judo was cancelled. Doug tells her he can't right now, but he'll call her when he finds Skeeter. He does this while blocking the gate to the fence so Skeeter can't get out and ruin Doug's cover. Skeeter is trapped with the vicious Lady.

Once Patti finally leaves, Doug opens the door to find Lady tearing up Skeeter's pants. He thinks she ate him, which would be impressive as there's no blood or remains. Doug briefly thinks a rather large dog ate his best friend in a few short moments. Then Skeeter's shirt flies at the dog.

So Skeeter is just throwing his clothes at the dog. That's less ridiculous.

Skeeter says he's almost out of clothes before they both run out to the sidewalk.

Doug continues the Race Canyon fantasy from the same spot he left off last time. Race has the wizzer, but now the dog is finished with the steak and coming after him. This really doesn't follow what's really going on. His squeaky steak and salami didn't work. He's not trapped with the wizzer, looking for a way out. He's still looking for a way in to get the wizzer.

Anyway, the fantasy continues and Race tells Skeetari to release the secret weapon. The secret weapon is just another bigger dog that will fight the vicious cave dog. Doug has realized he just needs another dog to take care of Lady long enough to get the wizzer. Who else could they go to?

Porkchop refuses. Skeeter offers to clean his igloo for a month. Porkchop refuses. Doug gets down on one knee and begs. Porkchop gets an idea. Seduction.

Porkchop struts into the yard carrying a heart-shaped box with a bone in it. Lady starts seeing hearts. That's when Porkchop busts out the booze.

If your plans ever include getting two dogs drunk, you might want to reconsider everything. Everything.

While Doug and Skeeter sneak in, Porkchop turns on a stereo to play some romantic music. At the corner of the house, Skeeter stands on Doug's shoulders and they finally get the wizzer. Unfortunately Lady hears them and immediately loses all interest in Porkchop. She has intruders to kill.

Skeeter doesn't jump down from Doug's shoulders though. He just stays up there, trying to keep his balance, while Doug runs in circles to avoid Lady. And if that's not absurd enough, Doug then gets on a pogo stick to hop away from Lady.

And yes, Skeeter remains standing on Doug's shoulders. It works though. They make it out of the yard with the wizzer. No one has been bitten.


Oh, but they left the gate open. Before they can celebrate too much, Lady starts growling at them from the open gate. Doug tells Skeeter it's time for plan x. Confused, Skeeter asks, "plan x?"

"Give her the wizzer."

All that for nothing.

They go to Patti's to return her new super screaming wacky wizzer in shame. I'm surprised they bothered to retrieve it after the dog chewed it up, but maybe Lady threw it back to them like she did with the toy steak.

They apologize and tell her the short version of what happened. She says they should've told her earlier. She could've given them another one.

Her dad gets them free from work. She has boxes of them. Look at her living room. It's full of boxes of wizzers. She gives them a box.

So...most of this didn't happen, right? I'm sure Doug and Skeeter really did ruin Patti's toy, but the extent they went to get it back has to be all made up. I assume Doug made up this elaborate story with all these impossibilities (Porkchop's seduction of Lady, Skeeter standing on Doug's shoulders while they pogo stick out) so they could tell Patti how hard they tried to get it before the dog ruined it. And then they just gave it to the dog. Who knows why he wrote it down in his journal this way.

The Race Canyon fantasy is really interesting as well. Doug's fantasies are often his was of thinking out solutions to his problems, but this time is a bit different. In his fantasy, he's the hero that goes into the cave. In his lie, he dangles the salami while Skeeter goes in the yard. In his fantasy, he has the wizzer and his secret weapon scares the dog so he can get out of the cave. In his lie, his dog tries to get Lady drunk so he can sneak into the yard. It's just completely different, and I don't know what to make of it.