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 theater 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. 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.
- 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
- Badass Grandpa: Sarmoti.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Hunter in one episode; Kate, once or twice
- Black Best Friend: Orlando Jones as the prairie dog Snack.
- 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.
- The Cameo: Donkey!
- 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.
- Dirty Old Man: Sarmoti.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Gilligan Cut: Combined with Flashback Twist on one occasion.
- Granola Girl: Sierra.
- Gratuitous German: Siegfried and Roy.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Multiboobage: The female pig in the "Donkey" episode has eight nipples.
- 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.
- Offhand Backhand: From Siegfried to Roy.
- Pandaing To The Audience: Kate's friend Foo Lin and her date, Nelson from the Missing Episode, NOT depicted as token Asian neighbors.
- Panthera Awesome
- Product Placement: 7-Eleven and Applebee's
- Real Song Theme Tune: John Goodman singing Elvis' "Viva Las Vegas".
- Running on All Fours: As part of the animal's Masquerade.
- Seldom Seen Species: Snack the prairie dog. Also there is a minor recurring lynx character.
- Speech-Impaired Animal/The Unintelligible: The turkeys.
- 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?
was sad, and then Darth Vader
said some made up African crap.
- 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.
- 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.