Animaniacs was a popular children’s TV series from the 90s that is making a comeback. The new animated series is premiering on Hulu, but from the Animaniacs reboot trailer, it seems more like a sequel than a reboot. The return of the series with its trailer reminds us just how quirky and wacky the show was. Not to mention just how relevant the show was to general pop culture.
Animaniacs Was A Meta Cartoon About WB Mascots
Image via Hulu.
The Animaniacs was a unique show. It’s basically a sketch or variety show like MadTV, but totally animated. This obviously allowed them to do more outrageous stories and situations than a live-action variety show. The three lead characters of Yakko, Wakko, and Dot, connected the main story and transitioned between the segments to other popular secondary characters. And the origin of these characters is where things get incredibly interesting. The three siblings are actually characters from the 1930s, who were locked away in a water tower on the Warner Bros. studio lot. So it was totally meta, even at a time when that concept wasn’t really a thing. This also explains why they look like classic black and white animated characters like the early Mickey Mouse or Felix the Cat.
The show’s premise relies on how the siblings have to familiarize themselves to the 90’s world around them after their escape. This is also why many of the siblings’ catchphrases and mannerisms are so incredibly old fashioned. The show was a huge success when it was part of the Fox Kids block in its debut season, even winning a Peabody Award. Later the show switched over to Warner Bros. Animaniacs was also one of the very few animated shows produced by Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment. Given the show’s format, they often did parodies of classic shows and movies, or satire of real-world events and people. It was quite an influential show that catered to both kids and adults through these topics. And from the Animaniacs reboot trailer, it looks like the new show will very much be in the same vein.
The Animaniacs Reboot Trailer Brings All Of Its Classic Concepts Back!
Image via Hulu.
Premiering on Hulu, the Animaniacs reboot trailer is chock full of recognizable moments from the classic show. And the new premise seems to be continuing what made the original so great. Despite the show being a reboot, it feels a lot more like a sequel, especially given that the characters even refer to how long they’ve been off the air from the original run to the new season. The trailer begins with one of the siblings, Wakko, taking an issue with reboots. The trio then get a check for the Hulu original and then decide to sell out themselves. This type of meta self-deprecation continues as the siblings argue over what their first lines in the new show should be. Dot comments about it being 22 years later, clearly referring to how the original show ended in 1998, exactly 22 years ago.
The self-awareness continues as the siblings have to seemingly to adjust to the new world of tablets and social media. So it is very much the same idea as the original, but instead of being absent from the world from 1930 to the 90s, this time it’s from the beginning of the new Millennium, to 20 years later. The second half of the Animaniacs reboot trailer shows a flurry of images bringing back the other classic characters. There is even an orange one-eyed Cyclops monster that is very reminiscent of the current US President. So they’re clearly not shying away from their contribution to pop culture, looking to recreate the same influence today. (And, to be clear, the original show’s opening theme song mocked US President Bill Clinton.)
Animaniacs Reboot Trailer Inspired By Looney Tunes
This is not unlike WB’s own Looney Tunes coming back with new content for a new generation. Coincidentally, the irreverence of Looney Tunes in many ways inspired the creation of Animaniacs. I’m actually very excited to see just how the new Animaniacs show will exist in this new world, and how that distinction itself will factor into the storylines and segments of the series.
Animaniacs premieres on Hulu on November 20.
So what did you think about the new Animaniacs reboot trailer? Let me know in the comments below.
Featured image via Hulu.
Shah Shahid is an entertainment writer, movie critic (so he thinks), host of the Split Screen Podcast (on Apple Podcasts & everywhere else) and filmy father on a mission to educate his girls on decades of film history. Armed with uncontrollable sarcasm and cautious optimism, Shah loves discussing film, television and comic book content until his wife’s eyes glaze over. So save her by engaging him on his own blog at BlankPageBeatdown.com or on Twitter @theshahshahid.