Western Animation: Father of the Pride

Father of the Pride was a short-lived CGI Animated Sitcom. It was the first television production produced by DreamWorks Animation as well as the first show to use feature film quality CGI. It aired on NBC in 2004.

Set in Las Vegas, the show depicts the secret lives of the animals who live there. The main characters are the family of white lions (father Larry, mother Kate, teenage daughter Sierra, son Hunter, and father-in-law Sarmoti) that form part of Siegfried and Roy's act. All the other animals in the Secret Garden (S&R's private zoo) basically act as sitcom neighbors.

The show was heavily hyped during the Olympics before it premiered, and featured loads of celebrities in regular and cameo roles. Dreamworks had high hopes for it, but before the premiere, Roy was attacked by one of his tigers, putting a pall on the proceedings. The duo insisted that The Show Must Go On.

But the show was a flop anyway, for several reasons. People were already sick of it by the time it premiered, thanks to all the promotion. It was very uncomfortable to watch the show with Roy's recent mauling in mind. Many airings were repeatedly interrupted by updates on the 2004 presidential election. And the show itself suffered from the notion, popular in the years post-South Park, that anything is funny as long as it is coming out of the mouth of a cute cartoon creature. Barring the Animation Age Ghetto issue, one must admit that seeing a cute lion character mime using her tail for...something else is a bit much for anyone. Plus, the show was way expensive and time-consuming, with each episode costing over 1.5 million dollars to make and over nine months to complete.

The show has been released on DVD, but good luck finding a copy. Pride is mainly remembered now for being one of the most colossal flops in the history of prime-time animation, though Dreamworks has had more success with animated series since then.


  • Accessory-Wearing Cartoon Animal: Sierra wears a black collar, Hunter wears an Elizabethan collar (a cone, in other words), Foo Lin wears a bow on her head, and Mr. Right wears a purple bow and collar or a red handkerchief (in "Stage Fright"). A few other animals in the show count as this trope as well.
  • Alternative Foreign Theme Song: The Japanese theme song is "Ofuro Paradise" by Biyuchifuruzu. A little bit of it can be heard here.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: That'll happen when yours are High On Catnip.
  • An Aesop: Some episodes end on one or two, despite the apparent nature of the show.
  • Animated Actors: In this universe, Donkey is a celebrity and the star of the Shrek films.
  • Anthropomorphic Zig Zag
  • Arranged Marriage: Larry and Kate apparently had one. They do seem to genuinely love one another, though.
  • Ass Shove: Sarmoti hides his poker winnings in the rectum of the zebra rugs made from his first kill. Unfortunately nobody told Kevin, the very much alive zebra who'd be standing in for the rug after Kate destroyed it.
  • Bad Bad Acting: Siegfried and Roy in "Siegfried and Roy: The Movie Fantasy Experience Movie."
  • Badass Grandpa: Sarmoti.
  • Berserk Button: Don't tell Kate how to raise her children, even if she's your child.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Hunter in one episode; Kate, once or twice
  • Big Eater: Larry and Sarmoti. The latter rubs his quick metabolism in the former's face in the episode where Larry is trying to lose weight.
  • Black Best Friend: Orlando Jones as the prairie dog Snack.
    • Also, Sarmoti's poker friend who's a black panther.
  • Broken Masquerade: With Snack and Roy in "Stage Fright."
  • Brutal Honesty: Sarmoti, especially towards Loo Fin.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Seigfried and Roy are portrayed as this. They're even capable of unrehearsed, but more importantly REAL magic, like turning a bamboo staff into edible Liquorice Whip..
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Sierra and Sarmoti in one episode and with Barbara Streisand and a lobster in another episode.
    • Sarmoti gets one once every other episode, usually from Kate.
  • The Cameo: Donkey!
  • Camp Gay: Donkey's stunt double Jarmeece.
    • Dom De Luise's character in "One Man's Meat Is Another Man's Girlfriend."
  • Cats Are Mean: Sierra is quite rebellious and sometimes mean, while Sarmoti is always mean to Larry
  • Cats Hate Water/Hates Baths: Averted with Hunter.
  • Cats Are Snarkers: Sarmoti
  • Clip Show: The final episode.
  • Companion Cube: Sarmoti's zebra rug, made out of his first kill.
  • Crocodile Tears: Sierra does this to hustle Sarmoti out of the money he won from her boyfriend in poker.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Sierra and Sarmoti, though Larry has his moments as well.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: "Siegfried and Roy: The Movie Fantasy Experience Movie."
  • Dirty Old Man: Sarmoti.
    • Really Gets Around: The unfinished, storyboard-only episode on the DVD reveals that he either has slept with, is sleeping with or plans to sleep with every single female in the compound, regardless of species.
  • Dom Com But Furry!
  • Dynamic Entry: Sigfried and Roy's usual schtick. You know the two are about to walk right in your front door when their Leitmotif starts to play and smoke billows in from out of nowhere. Larry manages to pull off a Dynamic Exit in episode 11 when he is creeped out by the feminist group Kate joined- by dive-bombing out of the first-floor window.
  • Elaborate Underground Base: both Snack and Sarmoti have tunnel networks at their disposal, since the Secret garden is... rather hard to leave at times.
  • Fantastic Racism: Towards Turkeys in "The Thanksgiving Episode."
  • Fat Cat: Mr. Right and Larry
  • Fun with Acronyms: The name "Sarmoti" is derived from Siegfried And Roy Masters Of The Impossible.
  • Fur Is Clothing: Snack uses his belly button as a pocket in the pilot episode.
  • Furry Baldness: Sarmoti
  • Furry Confusion/Four Legs Good, Two Legs Better: Donkey from Shrek and his stunt double, Jermeece walk on four legs, but the zebras usually walk on two legs.
    • Likewise, Mr. Right, Foo Lin's pet cat usually walks on all fours, but the lions, tigers, cheetahs, and other cats usually walk on two legs.
    • Chuttney the elephant walks on all four legs, unlike most of the other animals.
  • Furry Female Mane: Inverted with the lions of course.
  • G-Rated Drug: Catnip.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: more than a few lines about Larry "eating" one of the neighbors or Snack's new girlfriend in one case. Cos, yknow, he's a predatory animal living among herbivores and all.
    Larry: (on a diet) "I can't eat like this! I'm a mighty predator, not Lara Flynn Boyle!... In fact I could go for a Lara Flynn Boyle right about now..."
    • One episode has the female panther's' visible reaction when a virile male jaguar drops his towel... never mind that the animals otherwise never wear clothes.
    • The above-mentioned "tail" joke from an unaired episode:
    Lily: "We have to take responsibility for our lives, as well as our orgasms. (Holds up her tail) As long as I have this, I don't need a man!"
    (Cut to Foo Lin showing off her stubby tail to Kate)
    Foo Lin (Quietly): "Story of my life."
  • Gilligan Cut: Combined with Flashback Twist on one occasion.
    Larry: (one year ago) "I promise I'll never forget our wedding anniversary again!"
  • Gosh Darn It to Heck!: A brief running joke with Kate in the Thanksgiving episode.
    "Son of a b!"
    "You, sir, can go to h!"
    "Dad, what the f-" (Cut to black)
  • Granola Girl: Sierra.
  • Gratuitous German: Siegfried and Roy.
  • Growing Up Sucks: Larry: "We're a new generation of parents! We had a lot of fun, so you don't have to!"
  • Growling Gut: Larry has a hard time shutting up his hungry stomach throughout an episode where he's put on a diet.
  • Hartman Hips: All of the female lions sport these.
  • High On Catnip: An entire episode centers around Larry and Kate's assumptions that their daughter is smoking catnip. They end up accidentally ingesting it themselves, and rather... pot-like effects take hold.
  • Homage: to the classic family sitcom format, from All In The Family to The Simpsons.
  • Inherently Funny Word: "Monkey Chicken Cheese Balls." According to the DVD Commentary, the writers attempted to work the words "monkey," "chicken," "cheese" and "balls" into the show as much as possible, as they felt they were the four funniest words in comedy.
  • Leitmotif: The "Siegfried and Roy" theme song
  • Masquerade: Think about it. Larry and the rest of the Talking Animals usually walk upright but tend to drop on all fours in the presence of humans...
  • Meaningful Name: Sarmoti stands for Segfried and Roy: Masters of The Impossible.
    • Sierra is a region in Nevada.
  • Missing Episode: some broadcasts omit the "Panda episode", where Kate tries to matchmake her panda friend Foo Lin to a male panda, who falls for Kate instead. No actual cheating happens at all, though.
    • The DVD has two episodes which never aired: "Siegfried and Roy: The Movie Fantasy Experience Movie" and "Stage Freight" (the pilot re-cut as an Origins Episode), as well as one episode that was only ever storyboarded.
  • Mistaken for Gay: In "The Siegfried & Roy Movie Fantasy Experience Movie," Kate is taken to a women's self-help club, and upon entering nervously exclaims "I like men!"
    • Becomes a Brick Joke when Larry comes to the group to "save" her:
  • Multiboobage: The female pig in the "Donkey" episode has eight nipples.
    • And there's a couple references to Kate or the other female cats having eight nipples, despite appearing to have humanoid breasts.
  • Mythology Gag: After getting kicked by Chutney, Snack bounces off of three sunbathing women's breasts to the tune of the "NBC" station jingle.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Averted. While Siegfried and Roy are voiced by impersonators, the real Siegfried and Roy are credited as exec producers, making the whole project legitimately sanctioned.
    • But otherwise played straight - one episode has Dick Cheney and Barbra Streisand.
  • Nobody Poops: Averted.
    Sarmoti: ...now if you'll excuse me I'm gonna hit the litter box...hard!
  • Nonhumans Lack Attributes: Averted with the female pig in the "Donkey" episode; she has eight nipples showing.
  • Noodle Incident: From the unfinished episode:
    "So long story short, I don't have to pee sitting down. But I'll admit, at night, it's dark, I do it anyway."
  • Offhand Backhand: From Siegfried to Roy.
  • Panda-ing to the Audience: Kate's friend Foo Lin and her date, Nelson from the Missing Episode, NOT depicted as token Asian neighbors.
  • Panthera Awesome
  • Papa Wolf: Larry is frequently shown to be very protective of his daughter.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Siegfried and Roy attempt to spy on a rival magic show by attending incognito (see: wearing eyeglasses).
  • Product Placement: 7-Eleven, Applebee's and Ti Vo.
  • Reading the Stage Directions Out Loud: When Larry, Sarmoti and Snack attempt to kidnap Donkey.
    (The three of them walk past Donkey, Sarmoti carrying a parasol, Larry pushing a carriage with Snack inside, dressed as a baby)
    Sarmoti: Top of the mornin'!
    Larry: Nice day!
    Snack: What a baby might say!
  • Real Song Theme Tune: John Goodman singing Elvis' "Viva Las Vegas".
    • Siegfried and Roy's theme song, which was their real theme song for their Vegas show.
  • Running Gag: "Possession" has one where Larry does an impression of a "swarthy foreign handyman" to woo Kate, who keeps telling him to shut up.
  • Running on All Fours: As part of the animal's Masquerade.
  • Screw Politeness Im A Senior: Sarmoti
  • Seldom-Seen Species: Snack the prairie dog. Also there is a minor recurring lynx character.
  • Speech-Impaired Animal/The Unintelligible: The turkeys. Though it turns out at the end of an episode that they can speak English, they just sound silly if they do.
  • Straw Feminist: Averted with Lily from the unaired episode "The Siegfried & Roy Movie Fantasy Experience Movie," who's efforts are more to help women be self-sufficient, not convince them that they're better than men, and is perfectly nice to Larry when she first meets him. The unfinished episode on the DVD shows her even trying to help Sarmoti grow out of his dated, misogynistic tendencies.
  • Strictly Formula: [adult swim] bumpers quipped that despite the funny animals and heavy usage of sex and toilet humor, none of the plots would be out of place in a 1960s or 70s era sitcom.
  • Take That: In the pilot episode, Sierra and Hunter were watching a movie, whose cover had a picture of a lion with a crown.
    Hunter: What's happening now?
    Sierra: Oh, Simba was sad, and then Darth Vader said some made up African crap.
    • The antelope who bullies Hunter compares him to Kimba the White Lion.
    • Sarmoti describes one of his dates as "easier to get into than Florida State."note 
  • Starring Special Effects
  • Stealth Pun: Sarmoti's Black Best Friend is a black panther.
  • Talking Animal
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: Some of the female animals, like Foo Lin the panda and the female antelope, wear bow on their heads.
  • Token Minority: several, particularly Chutney the Indian Elephant.
  • Too Sexy For This Time Slot: What some parents thought about the first episode's "Mounting Time" joke.
  • Totally Radical:
    Kate: "I wanna raise the roof! Get jiggy with it! Do the wild thing!"
    Foo Lin: "Why are you talking like a Black man from 1991?"
  • Transparent Closet: Chuttney. The turkey is just his roommate.
    (Hearing Hunter singing "Silent All These Years" in the bathroom) "Are we still pretending he's not gay?"
  • Typical Cartoon Animal Colors: The lobster in one episode is red like a cooked lobster.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Sarmoti again, although he's Larry's father-in-law.
    "Larry, I want you to know that even if you were my real son, I'd be pretty disappointed - but I'd make do."
  • X Meets Y: Traditional sitcom plots meet those fur-tastic Orangina ads.
  • Yes-Man: Sarmoti's personal assistant.
  • You ALL Look Familiar: Weekly viewers would notice the same 'extras' filling out crowd scenes episode to episode.