Saturday Morning Cartoons: Rugrats

It’s been a long time coming for us to cover Rugrats on our Saturday Morning Cartoons, although technically originally it aired between 7:00-9:00 PM on weekends — Those Saturday Nights with Nickelodeon were family events!

The basic premise of Rugrats focuses on a group of babies who seemingly can’t talk, or at least adults can’t understand them, who hear or see something and then interpret it as a wild adventure. Their whole world is perceived as completely different as their imaginations take hold. Most of these adventures are often challenged by Tommy’s bratty cousin, Angelica, who is one of the very few who can still understand the babies because she’s still a young kid herself.

If you haven’t revisited this show as an adult, you should because you will be blown away with how many layers there are to this show. It was like being transported back to being a kid, not because we watched this show, but because it reminded us of how our imaginations could run wild back then. But the adults are just as interesting and realistic to watch and relate to as adults. They deal with real problems and have that sense of dry humor we all develop when we get older. The contrast between the two is amazing to watch because at this point, we’ve lived both of those worlds.

There are also some pretty progressive themes with the parents — Angelica’s Mom for instance is the CEO of a company and an incredibly powerful business woman. She wears the pants in her relationship, and she’s not the only one! Phil and Lil’s Mom is a feminist activist powerhouse while her husband is meek and mild. Often times in watching this we thought that given the time it came out, they may have been each others beards for each other to cover them from coming out. Then there’s Chuckie’s Dad, a single Dad, and the both of them are experiencing some pretty severe PTSD from the loss of their mother. Tommy’s parents, Stu and DeeDee, are both highly neurotic and kind of a hot mess, trying to figure the parenting thing out.

Eventually we are introduced to Susie Carmichael, the first real character of color on the show, and she is the voice of wisdom and reason. She’s also super smart like her parents. Her father is a script writer for a popular kids television show and her mother is Harvard-educated heart surgeon.

And finally, the animation in this show is really honestly out of this world. Don’t be fooled by it’s sketched-out opening appearance. The creative team behind this show got to play with really abstract colors and shapes to show the imagination of baby vision.

Currently, all of Rugrats is on Hulu. We highly recommend this show because it’s really good. Not only will you feel nostalgic, but you will be blown away by how beautiful and smart this show was at the time.


Let’s Watch 2 Movies – Mean Girls

Mean Girls remains a fixture and a fascination for Maddy and Mary Ellen’s generation, but in the years since the movie came out, we’ve all come to love the so-called “mean girls.” But the actual movie doesn’t love them and instead encourages us to cheer for Janis Ian, the bitter outcast who is definitely not a lesbian. How well does that story hold up? Not super well, according to us. In this episode, we take aim at Tina Fey Feminism, the girls who bullied us when we were young, and the paternalistic shadow that Aaron Samuels casts upon this film.

Next week: HEATHERS!!

Email us at letswatchtwomovies@gmail.com and follow us on Twitter at letswatchtwo, maryellenmurr and MIDImyers! Lastly, please consider tipping us via Patreon: patreon.com/atomicblueproductions


Ryan TV – Queen of Hearts Filming & Pokemon GO Adventures (Tape 36)

Ryan had the opportunity to shoot the “Queen of Hearts” show for Impulse Dance Center!

In this, he takes us backstage as he runs between three different cameras filming the performance. We also get a fun cameo of Steph, who attended the show, and wandered the empty halls of venue/school with Ryan singing and looking at artwork on the walls.

We also get a fun Pokemon GO adventure with Katie, so it’s a double packed vlog!


Ryan TV – 80’s Night at Mohegan SUn (Tape RW-16)

Throwback Tuesday: 80’s Night at Mohegan Sun!

Ryan and Kristen head to the casino for an 80’s night special. While there aren’t a lot of events, there is plenty of music playing and retro games to play.

This is a re-upload of the DrYoshi Show, now being hosted over at Ryan TV!


Saturday Morning Cartoons: Gumby

Saturday Morning Cartoons: Gumby

This cartoon was one of Ryan’s favorites growing up. When he was a kid, he owned one Gumby tape that he watched on repeat, and he would be so excited to go to the video store to rent other Gumby tapes.

Gumby was a claymation cartoon that started in the 50’s, was revived in the 80’s, and then had a film produced in the 90’s. There wasn’t any real context as to how the world worked — Sometimes they were part of a bedroom or toy store. Entering books could warp them other worlds. Sometimes they were independently in their own neighborhood and world of Gumby.

It was a magical series where pretty much anything could happen. Gumby, modeled slightly after the Gingerbread Man, was often joined by his best friend, Pokey, a talking clay horse. Eventually things got a bit weirder with introduction of the clay dinosaur, Prickles, and the literal talk blob of clay “Goo”.

But even through the magic, there were some terrifying parts of the show. Aside from the weird claymation movements, Gumby and his friends would constantly be in danger, their lives on the line, and often would blow up into a billion pieces and it was never really made clear how their healing abilities would work and when they would work.

There was one particular episode that Ryan remembers where Gumby and Pokey go into their stove and find a pastry factory inside. The pastries to turn out to be evil and they cook Gumby and Pokey into pies. Gumby’s parents later find them in the oven, in which they cry and mourn the death of their sun, until Gumby is revealed to be alive. This was a common trope on Gumby. It was actually kind of morbid?

Never the less, Gumby is a staple in children’s animation and is definitely worth the watch for how weird it is — And also because this was being produced in the 50s, and that was really impressive animation for it’s time.


Throwback Theater – Warcraft Valley: The Movie

Put on your nostalgia caps because Maddy and Ryan went back and watched a movie they made in college based on their childhood fanfictions!

This “film” is full of magical animals, stop animations, an arcade montage, Disney’s Gargoyles, the X-Men, and Ryan stomping around saying “I’m a Panda.”

There is some backstory to this: Warcraft Valley was a story series that Katie, Maddy and Ryan mutually wrote from Middle School to College (and then some). It originally started as magical animals and aliens battling each other in the woods, but eventually spun out of control and became a giant fanfiction universe featuring characters from Disney’s Gargoyles and the X-Men (Which we are now re-reading on our podcast at warcraftvalley.podbean.com).

This film was made as a surprise gift for Katie’s 20th birthday. Maddy had found an old script and said “Hey, we should film this and give it to Katie for her birthday.” So we gathered everyone at the time, presented the idea, and got a big “YES” as a response.

The best part about this project was that even though it was low-quality, low-budget, and clearly filmed on my home video camera, everyone involved with the project put the same amount of love and time into it because we all mutually wanted to make the movie for Katie.

Going back to this, it’s still pretty funny, and full of great memories. The best part? We’re still making videos today.


Ryan TV – YourMiniCon 2015 (Tape RW-15)

Back in 2015, YourMiniCon was the first convention we covered an event as Atomic Blue Productions. We created a music video full of cosplayers and activities happening at the event.

This vlog is from the archives, behind the scenes of YourMiniCon, now re-uploaded to Ryan TV!


The Mutant Ages – X-Men: The Animated Series – Time Fugitives (Part 1)

Maddy and Ryan continue their journey through the second season of X-Men: The Animated Series, and they’ve reached another terrifying and prescient episode about the Friends of Humanity, Marvel Comics’ anti-mutant terrorist group. “Time Fugitives, Part 1” weaves a confusing web of time travel shenanigans with our favorite time jockeys, Bishop and Cable, but it also manages to stuff in a metaphor for the AIDS crisis and plenty of reminders of our current divisive political climate. Unfortunately, Apocalypse is also in this episode, for some reason. More importantly, Cable makes friends with a tiny cube, and that cube is our new favorite character.

X-Men Spotlight: Graydon Creed, the odious leader of the Friends of Humanity

E-mail us your feedback at themutantages@gmail.com or follow us on Twitter at TheMutantAges, MIDImyers and RyanPagella


Saturday Morning Cartoon: X-Men: The Animated Series

Saturday Morning Cartoon: X-Men: The Animated Series

It’s crazy that we haven’t mentioned X-Men: The Animated Series on our Saturday Morning Cartoons segment yet. We have an entire show dedicated to watching old X-Men cartoons, The Mutant Ages!

Of all the shows we’ve posted here, X-Men: The Animated Series is one that everyone here at Atomic Blue watched and was obsessed with. It got to the point that we had X-Men themed parties while watching this cartoon and dressing up like the X-Men.

The thing that makes the X-Men so great are that they are outcasts with superpowers. They are faced with prejudice and extreme political conflict while trying to live normal lives. We love the X-Men in all of their incarnations. They are the heart and soul of Atomic Blue Productions. We ARE the X-Men, when it comes down to it.

Something that goes unaccredited for this show was how deep the thematic overtones go. Yes, we know it was about politics, but if you break it down like Maddy and Ryan do on the Mutant Ages, this show was presenting a lot of very different political views. Since the show was for kids, it’s masked under a bunch of goofy one liners, but the themes are still heavy and dark.

Also everyone is super gay? And we’re representing that!

We can’t recommend this show enough. Go watch it. Like stop reading this and just go binge-watch X-Men: The Animated Series right now.

Also Wolverine/Gambit and Rogue/Storm are totally dating.


Saturday Morning Cartoon: Defenders of Dynatron City

Saturday Morning Cartoons: Defenders of Dynatron City

This cartoon was a lost opportunity. It was based off a NES game of the same name in 1992 and featured both the voices of Whoopi Goldberg and Tim Curry.

The pilot focused around Dynatron City, a place where mutation has become a cool trend. This is to the dismay of the main villain, who is a mad scientist trying to mess with people’s DNA. Instead people have embraced their sudden mutations and are looking forward to seeingwhat mutation they receive next.

There’s a scene earlier on this pilot where a Dad gets a soda from a vending machine, grows an extra set of arms and turns to his two sons who have molded to together and his wife who literally just has an eyeball for a head, and then makes a joke about having the “extra set of hands he needed”. You really just need to see it for yourself.

The heroes are a group of electricians and their dog who show up to the Mad Scientists lair to find out why so much power is being pulled to this one location. Inside they find a talking blue monkey who plays the role of team leader (Because why not) and they release him. Moments later, they are kidnapped and experimented on and receive the wackiest set of superhuman powers.

Buzzsaw Girl grows a buzzsaw for legs, Jet Headstrong can fire his head off like a rocket, Ms. Megawatt can generate electricity, Radium Dog has super powered strength in his jaws — And last of all, and probably the most bizarre, is their toolbox who also mutates and comes to life as a super powered hero with a hammer for a face.

Together they destroy the mad scientists lab and become the Defenders of Dynatron City! But for how long? We’ll never know because we only got the pilot, but it looked like the mad scientist was building a terrifying apocalyptic robot at the end of the episode, so maybe the world just blows up.

This pilot is something that Ryan is fascinated by because it’s simply so bizarre.