Might I say that such dangers affecting their hood might necessarily define importance to them? Well, not really. At first, some things are merely "neat", so long as they don't keep Artie and his buddies awake, and sure, infinite dreams of super cool cardboard aircraft dogfights against ninja nazi clonebots from another dimension has a tendency to tickle even a slacker, but after a few instances of murdered friends and property destruction, the gang approaches saving the hood and the universe as they might approach most household and lawn chores. Hell, when one good buddy proves to actually be alive, Artie merely indicates that he owes Mason a buck.
Where it's going in its short running time is a laugh to see, and the actors including Jason Brown, Kai Kekai, Manny Marmolejus, Victoria Walters, Haji Hill, John Maraspini and of course the Rad Guy himself Edward Radmanich III, are likeable and funny. However, Artie Saves the Hood is almost too slacker for its own good. Radmanich's bored narration almost feels like a bad reading at times, and the occasional scene feels calculated specifically to make the normals roll their eyes. If the extras on the DVD are any indication, Radmanich is shooting for a bit of a Franchise angle with his funny characters. There are three "Artie Guy and Jay" cartoons to watch (they make South Park look like Final Fantasy, but I'm thinking that was the intention), as well as an ultra short-short called "A.D.D. Bad Night", all with that what-the-hell sort of humor Artie Saves the Hood pulls off. And while none of these feel at all like a waste of time, it's hard not to feel that this is all a little bit Kevin Smith.
It's Kevin Smith to the Nth degree, though, as the special effects kick in and we get multiverse wanderings and well matted-in joke action sequences. Artie's matter-of-fact piecemeal description of the "magic soaps" and the Crazy Lady's explanatory comic strip is every bit as funny as a bored, ironic and sarcastic response to one of the many surreal sequences herein.
In short, it's not perfect, but it's super-captain-cool, man! Picture this as one of a series of 10 PM Comedy Central episodes featuring the loveable and laughable Artie and Jay in various corn-ball adventures. It might not win the Emmys, but I, and probably you, would tune in for some big laughs at this not-so-silent Bob!
Two and One Half Stars out of Five for Artie Saves the Hood. Animated or not, I'm watching and I'm laughing. Check it out for yourself, coming soon to a Film Fest near you, by browsing over to the official web site: www.ArtieSavesTheHood.com. From an interruption during a space jaunt for a potty break to a friendly fire incident being explained away with the hope that said friend was a "zombie", it's hard to keep from laughing, even if you are shaking your head as you do! Ed, the Rad Man, is a funny guy, so until he does get his own T.V. Program in place of Tripping The Rift and decides that he's just a tad too big for The World's Greatest Critic (he'll need the Dimension's Greatest by then) I'll see you, and your alien mercenaries, in the next reel! (NOTE: Don't miss Artie's feature length sequel, 2008's Coldspot!)
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