Reviews: Titan Maximum

Season One (It Kicks Ass)

Cartoon Network, I've noticed, works in some bizarre perversion of a cyclical nature. It used to be that the Cartoon Cartoons (back when they were still called that) had semi-coherent cartoon plots that often veered off in bizarre and exciting directions, whereas the stuff on Adult Swim was superficially an ode to LSD, whereas their plots tended to revolve around the mundane. Nowadays, the rule seems to have turned itself on its head, with the eye-raping but conceptually boring The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack by day and this gem at night.

Though it's a clear homage to Voltron, Titan Maximum, with its hokey space-pilot premise and crude puppets for characters, bears a much closer resemblance to Thunderbirds. In other words, you take one look at it and what you see is the epitome of passé Science Fiction clichés. But dig a little deeper, viewer; hidden beneath its ugliness is what may be the Network's most brilliant creation since the long-forgotten days of Johnny Bravo and Cow And Chicken.

However, it must be said that, hilarious and iconoclastic as it is (like its spiritual sibling, Robot Chicken, it's dead-set on ruining your childhood forever), this series is an acquired taste. As a work of fiction, it belongs to that odd canon wherein your enjoyment of it depends on whether or not you dislike the characters. Palmer, Sasha, Jodi, and entourage are a grossly-irresponsible, vindictive, traitorous, self-obsessed, not very smart and downright sinful bunch, the kind of people you'd really hate to work with (but very probably do). But that's for the best, you see, because the show derives endless charm from their utter inability to thwart the schemes of its villain, Gibbs, who's an evil bastard, a cheap vulgarian, and the show's most charming character all at once.

This one's definitely worth a look-see. Here's hoping for season two!