Do you recall the Animorphs? A series of books about five (later six) teenagers who are granted the ability to transform into any animal so that they can defend the earth from a body-stealing alien menace? Well, we do. That's why we're going to review them. All 64 books, from start to finish. Here we go.Cinnamon Bunzuh! is a comedic review blog of the Animorphs series, published as instant messaging logs between the two authors, Ifi (the crazy sarcastic one), and Adam (the crazy analytic one).The series is named after the way the character Ax pronounces "Cinnamon Bun" when he starts using a mouth for the first time.The site also hosts the fanfiction Six Days The Animorphs Were Idiots, written by Ifi. (Link)They also have a twitter account, found here: Now concluded.
This review series provides examples of:
- Aborted Arc: The review of "The Unknown" ends abruptly, with a fourth of the book left to go.
- Alien Blood: Displayed here.
- Alternate Character Interpretation: Several, but most notable is probably Visser Three as the "Evil Cassie."
- Angrish: Ifi likes to do this a lot whenever something stupid happens. In the review for "The Beginning", she falls into this 5 times.
- April Fools' Day: On April 1, 2012, instead of an Animorph review, Cinnamon Bunzuh surprised everyone by releasing a review for Stephenie Meyer's The Host. Except when one actually clicks the review, it consists of nothing but an Andalite troll smiley (Which bizarrely actually works) and a note:"This book is really long, and we are lazy. Sorry folks."
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking:
- From their review of "The Separation":Ifi: The Animorphs take this whole thing surprisingly well.Adam: Well, I mean, they've already traveled through space and time and fought aliens and cosmic horrors and went to middle school dances.Ifi: Nothing impresses them anymore
- From their review of "The Exposed":Adam: Suddenly I am less inclined to become the servant to an eldritch horror.Ifi: No way man that's like half the fun of it.Adam: And the other half is?Ifi: oh you knowIfi: Feasting on soulsIfi: Singing into the voidIfi: Getting really drunk at two in the afternoon on a TuesdayIfi: etc
- From their review of "The Separation":
- Author Appeal:
- A Wizard Did It:
- How the duo handwave anything that is never really explained. Often Jesus Whale replaces the wizard.
- Ifi is also fond of saying that things happened "because of reasons."
- This also lead to the following exchange:Adam: How the heck do they manage to drag these things so far?Ifi: Science!Adam: Well, there are few things in life that can't be solved through science of the mad variety.
- Book Ends: Courtesy of the Cinnamon Bunzuh Twitter page:
- Brain Bleach:
- Needed after Adam puts some oh so delightful thoughts into Ifi's head concerning Jake in tiger-morph and his brother Tom.
- And again, after an ever so lovely discussion about mites.
- Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: From the review of "Megamorphs 2: In the Time of Dinosaurs", after everyone decides to go to the sunken nuclear submarine:Ifi: Marco grudgingly makes everyone go save the subAdam: And now everyone has cancerIfi: And superpowers!Adam: Cancer superpowers!
- But for Me, It Was Tuesday: They tend to joke like this a lot.
- It actually happens 3 times in their review of "The Arrival".Ifi: So the Animorphs are outnumbered approximately a bazillion to oneIfi: All hope is lost!Ifi: It must be Tuesday.(Later in the review)Ifi: Everyone is tackled by Hork-Bajir and chaos ensuesIfi: Must be TuesdayAloth sank to the floor. He was dead. Shot cleanly through the head.
<Retreat!> Arbat ordered, thundering past me.
Aloth was dead. Gonrod probably as well. Arbat was in charge.
My mind reeled. What could I do? The Hork-Bajir were massing for a new charge.
Ran. Ran with my brain replaying it again and again. Arbat had shot Aloth!
——Book Thirty-Eight, The ArrivalAdam: Must be Tuesday.
- It actually happens 3 times in their review of "The Arrival".
- Cat Up a Tree: From "The Change":Ifi: In other news, do you know the fire companies don't rescue cats from trees anymore?Adam: I used to have a turtle. I could never get the fireman to come get him out of the tree either.
- Comedic Sociopathy: Ifi, whose actions include, but are not limited to, setting Adam on fire.
- The Complainer Is Always Wrong: The duo's opinion about Marco in the review of "The Invasion". Adam even links to the page.
- Comically Missing the Point: Played for laughs in their review of Megamorphs #3, after a passage from Tobias describing a peaceful scene at the beach where "even the slaves [...] seemed to be having a good time":Adam: Wait...something seems off here...Tobias is afraid of water! He hates going to the beach! C'mon Applegate, get your act together.
- Composite Character: Inverted; the Chapman from "The Andalite Chronicles" is so different from the one in the main series that they conclude they must be different people (though perhaps related).
- Cool Car: Elfangor's Mustang is touted as a Crowning Moment of Awesome for the Andalite Chronicles and the series as a whole.
- Crazy Cat Lady: Visser Three, according to Alternate Character Interpretation. Also Ifi, to an extent.
- Crystal Dragon Jesus: The overtly mystical whale that Cassie can apparently communicate with has been dubbed "Jesus Whale." This later extends into the idea that all whales are Jesuses, with dolphins as their disciples.
- Deadpan Snarker: The duo, usually right after the characters say or do something really dumb.
- Death World: Australia is described as such. The Taxxon Homeworld too, but mostly Australia.
- Dissimile: Adam thinks this is a perfectly good simile:Ifi: Hilarity ensuesIfi: And by hilarity, I mean first degree murderAdam: And by first degree murder, you mean hilarity
- Department of Redundancy Department: From "The Escape", we have this about sharks:Ii: THEY ARE MADE OF TEETH LITERALLYIfi: THEIR SKIN IS TEETHIfi: AND THEIR TEETH ARE MORE TEETH
- Early Installment Weirdness:
- In many of the first 10 reviews, Adam and Ifi simply discussed the book they were reviewing, instead of going through the plot like they did in the later reviews.
- Adam also felt the need to point out that he liked bad puns in the review for "The Encounter". Later in the reviews, this would've made him Captain Obvious.
- Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: The only reason the duo could think of why the second Megamorphs book was written.
- Raptor Attack: Criticized.
- Everything's Squishier with Cephalopods: Adam's reaction to the cover of "The Exposed".Adam: Cephalopods!Adam: <3Adam: Ah, I love cephalopds.Adam: Just so darn cute.
- Fan-Art: They've had three fan art days, and both Adam and Ifi contribute illustrations to the blog, usually of whatever new alien is featured. Adam is the illustrator among the two, and it really shows.
- Ifi's insanity, Adams love of bad puns and Ifi's annoyance at it.
- Discussed in the review of "The Weakness".Ifi: Now, class, here we can see the devolution of a character.Ifi: Marco, and now Rachel, are rapidly being reduced to a simplistic interpretation of their most prominent traits.Ifi: From this, we can probably conclude that the author is an idiot.Adam: You have this down to a science, don't you?Ifi: English major.
- Flat "What.": Ifi's reaction after reading "The Capture".Ifi: I have so many words.Ifi: About this story.Ifi: I don't even know where to start.Adam: Pick one.Ifi: What.Adam: One of the words.Ifi: That was my word. "What."Adam: Can you elaborate?Ifi: This book is even more screwed up than the last one. The one with the ants. Because that was over in a chapter or two. The fucked up-ness in this one lasts for 154 pages.
- Fridge Logic: Many times on the blog, they question things that don't make sense.
- In the review for "The Beginning", after Caysath says that the Andalites have a treaty with the Kelbrids, despite the fact that the Kelbrid have no knowledge of them, as said by Caysath himself:Ifi: WhatIfi: whatIfi: whatIfi: HowIfi: How do you write a treaty with themIfi: if you have no direct knowledge of them?
- In the review for "The Beginning", after Caysath says that the Andalites have a treaty with the Kelbrids, despite the fact that the Kelbrid have no knowledge of them, as said by Caysath himself:
- Going Down with the Ship: Adam and Ifi are confused/horrified that none of the Andalites, bar Ax, try to escape from the ship in book #18.Adam: <NO! A CAPTAIN GOES DOWN WITH HIS SHIP!>Adam: <WE'RE NOT THE CAPTAIN!>Adam: <YOU ARE NOW.>
- A Good Name for a Rock Band: From the review of "The Pretender".Adam: Also, "The Andalite Bandits" would make a great band name.
- Harmless Villain: Visser Three is often described as this.
- Honor Before Reason: Ifi and Adam point out how this applies to the Andalites a lot.Ifi: Andalites are weird as hell.Adam: Do they have a procedure that will prevent the morphing process from regrowing it, or do they just do this on the honor system?Ifi: I am going to assume honor.Ifi: HONORRRRRRRRRRRR
- Humans Are Special: This trope is a frequent source of snark.
- Hypocritical Humor: From "The Escape":Ifi: KA Applegate had some epic chase scenes and insane battles but she is not very good at endings. In general.Adam: Hey, endings are toughIfi: THE END
- Idiot Ball/Smart Ball: From Book #37, which had the Animorphs terribly Flanderized but gave Visser Three a surprising moment of Magnificent Bastardry.Adam: It seems that he is the one who ended up with all the competence in this book.Ifi: It had to go somewhere.Adam: The law of the conservation of competence.Adam: It is science.
- Incest Yay Shipping/Screw Yourself: In-universe, Ifi ships Ax and Tobias-morphed-as-Ax. Keep in mind that they're also uncle and nephew.
- Insult to Rocks: In the review of "The Hidden" (the one with the "buffa-human")Adam: Well, when it morphs a human though, it would have a human brainAdam: So it should have a greater learning capacityAdam: But only when in human morphAdam: So how much memory would it be able to retain between morphs, realistically speaking?Ifi: I'm going to assume it would be on the same level as your average youtube commenterAdam: Hey, the poor creature has been through enough in this book. Let's not insult the thing to boot.
- I Want Grandkids:Ifi: Hi Mrs. Cassie's MomIfi: I'm gonna look up your nameAdam: Her name is "Cassie's Mom"Adam: Her parents were very presumptuous about grandkids.
- Lampshade Hanging: Frequently.
- Magitek: Apparently, dogs were created with "Ghost science!"
- Metaphorgotten: In the review of "The Separation", Ifi compares Nice Rachel's wimpiness to a hypothetical situation where Adam fights a rhinoceros with a "custom-made gun sword" while she waits in the Jeep, not because she's a coward, but because she realizes how dumb it would be to pay for such an impractical weapon.
- Nerd Glasses: When portrayed, both authors are always drawn with oversized glasses.
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: "Cassie is the time lord brain surgeon child of Jesus Whale."
- Non-Indicative Name: From the summary of "The Prophecy":There is no prophecy mentioned at any point in this book.
- Not So Different:
- Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Ifi's chat lines are in pink and Adam's are in blue.
- Previously On: Adam and Ifi admit they usually skip the first couple of pages because of the recaps.
- Rhetorical Question Blunder: From the review of "Megamorphs 2: In the Time of Dinosaurs", after Adam and Ifi begin joking that the nuclear submarine exploded and killed the Animorphs, leading to this exchange:Adam: So, they morph dolphins and lead the rescue workers to the submarine.Adam: Which promptly explodesIfi: Wiping out all life on the west coastAdam: Wow, I was not expecting them to kill off the character in a one-off book.Adam: Totally caught me off guardIfi: Yeah really what sort of author kills of the entire main cast in one book, breaking the hearts of millions of children?Adam: Lemony Snicket?Ifi: Did that really just go right over your head.Adam: Yes
- Robo Sexual: Apropos to nothing:Ifi: So how do you think the Chee have sex?Adam: *snorts milk out of nose*Adam: They are robots.Ifi: MY QUESTION STANDS
- Ifi jokes about being robosexual quite a bit throughout the blog. According to Ifi herself in the review of "The Pretender", she is, in fact, a robot.
- Running Gag:
- From Review 4 onward, JESUS WHALE pops up a lot.
- Visser Three spending weekends acquiring new morphs. And eating everything.
- The Controller with a shotgun.
- Cassie constantly flip-flopping and being hypocritical when it comes to morphing sentient beings.
- Characters not doing anything that could possibly reduce the amount of angst they have.
- Visser Three being incapable of delegating, given that he always seems to show up in books even when it's completely unnecessary for him to do so.
- "Have some X" where X is an adjective like stupid or horrifying, followed by a quote demonstrating the adjective.
- Adam and Ifi coming up with ideas for Ifi's fanfic in the middle of reviews.
- A quote from the book being reviewed that is scary, unsettling, has adult themes, or other similar things, either preceded with or followed by a reminder that this is a book series for kids.
- Sarcastic Clapping: Written as "-slow clap-" but this is Ifi's reaction whenever the Animorphs do something really stupid.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!:
- After finding out that the plot of "The Unknown" revolves around an Andalite toilet; see Aborted Arc above.
- After Rachel dies in "The Beginning":Ifi: IIfi: don'tIfi: You know what? I am already done.Adam: Get your tush back here.Adam: We are going to finish this thing, and we are going to finish it proper.Ifi: I have nothing to say that isn't a swear word
- Shaped Like Itself: In the second-to-last book review, Ifi comments that the end is looming on the horizon, "Like a...looming thing."
- Significant Birth Date: Accidental example, but Adam has the same birth day as Tobias. (May 25.)
- Skewed Priorities: Adam jokes that Ifi's lack of $400 worth of Animorphs merchandise shows her lack of priorities.
- Suddenly Shouting: Ifi's response to the Bolivian Army Ending of "The Beginning".Ifi: OhIfi: ItIfi: it appearsIfi: it appears thatIfi: the author
- Take That:
- Tender Tears:
- The ending to "The Solution" leaves Adam a sobbing wreck.
- And then Ifi gets a turn when she reads about how Jake wants nothing more then a normal life.
- Tsundere: Adam briefly acts like a stereotypical Tsundere when Ifi starts acting "kawaii".
- Unscientific Science: At the beginning of the review for the first Alternamorphs book, Adam tells Ifi that she can turn into a spaceship "through science". Much to Ifi's annoyance, Adam then proceeds to leave.
- Values Dissonance: Discussed in the review of "The Weakness", in which Rachel hijacks a plane and crashes it through a building in order to reach a Yeerk Pool and rescue Cassie. Obviously, that wouldn't fly nowadays. Adam: Well.Ifi: There is no way they can keep this in the reprint.Ifi: They just can't.Adam: They are going to have to rewrite a third of the book from scratch.
- Watsonian Versus Doylist: Oftentimes an attempt to make up an in-universe explanation where none is provided will occur. That line of thought will be followed with something along the lines of "Applegate forgot about it."
- What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: Adam and Ifi like to take scary, unsettling, or adult quotes from the books, which is usually close to a reminder that this is a book series for kids. For example, this from "VISSER": Ifi: Edriss was a coke addict for a while.Ifi: That's not even a joke.Adam: Kids' book, remember?
- What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: In-universe, they wonder if the characters are on drugs.Adam: Jake, what are you on this book?Ifi: LSDAdam: That's your answer to everything.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Too many examples to count. Some highlights:
- In "The Capture", Ifi and Adam wonder why Jake is boiling yeerks, when he just said not to kill human hosts because each one is someone's father or brother or son.
- In "The Ultimate", when Rachel's mom keeps trying to escape the Hork-Bajir camp.
- Xenofiction: Adam and Ifi are not only fond of this in general, they basically agree that this was K.A. Applegate's underused strength, with the Chronicles and other-planet stories being some of the best books.
- Ifi: THE END