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Recap / The Nostalgia Critic S 9 E 5

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Release: March 8, 2016

Film: Cats & Dogs

Tagline: In the battle between dogs and cats, everybody is a bad boy.

This review contains examples of:

  • Abusive Parents: The Uncle Lies (Doug) and Aunt Deceit (Tamara) tandem from the Labyrinth review return with a different set of children (Tamara and Malcolm). Of note is the scene where Aunt Deceit plays Cats & Dogs on the TV. Tamara tries to look away, but Uncle Lies turns her head back.
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  • Actor Allusion: Invoked by the Critic when he introduces Prof. Brody's actor Jeff Goldblum as "Jeff-uh-Gold-uh-Blum".
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: The Critic begins the review by asking the audience if they like to see cat videos, dog videos, or a film featuring both. The first two are greeted with cheers, but the latter is booed upon before the Critic shows a DVD box of Cats & Dogs and shoves it before the camera.
  • Brick Joke: Throughout the review the Critic is being mysteriously videotaped by Aunt Deceit, who also makes him do strange actions. At the end, it is revealed that she made a video about him bashing Deadpool (even though he likes it), with Uncle Lies doing the voiceover.
  • Call-Back:
    • After being confused by a dog being described as having been "catnapped" (when he thinks the better description would have been "dognapped"), the Critic thinks that the term "kidnapped" doesn't mean being literally taken hostage by a child, unless it's a Creepy Child, while claiming he'll never babysit again, alluding to the time he was forced to look after Evilina.
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    • The "PG" joke from the Labyrinth episode is played up again when Uncle Lies implies that the violence towards animals in Cats & Dogs is tolerable because it's rated "PG".
    • When Uncle Lies asks Aunt Deceit about their dinner, the latter asks if they like hotdogs.
  • Creepy Child: Son Malcolm is enthusiastic for animal abuse videos, in contrast to Daughter Tamara.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Sam panting heavily is compared by the Critic to masturbating. He is so squicked out he tries to distract himself by imagining Catherine Zeta-Jones, only to transition into the visual of her face superimposed over Sam's while the latter is panting.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: The Critic thinks Mr. Tinkles is the most enjoyable character in the film, if only because he is animated.
  • Dull Surprise: The Critic pokes fun at the scene where a woman shows a blank, wide-eyed expression to a dog about to fall onto her, in contrast to her earlier, more surprised reaction to a cat doing the same.
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  • Running Gag: Every time the Critic is about to make a painfully too-easy-to-make joke such as Alec Baldwin (Butch) playing a bitch or a "Dog-u ex Machina" pun, a referee (Malcolm) interrupts him, causing the Critic to become tense while the screen turns into an American football scoreboard, complete with play-by-play commentary.
  • Self-Deprecation: The Critic admits that he needed to go out on weekends after being suckered in by Aunt Deceit into acting like a dog and play catch.
  • Shout-Out:
  • So Okay, It's Average: The Critic's verdict on the film compared to Son of the Mask (the one film that made him break down in horror), both directed by Lawrence Guterman.
  • Take That!:
    • The Critic says, "Fun fact: this was actually supposed to be a crossover between 'Crappy CGI Garfield' and 'Crappy CGI Marmaduke', until they realized 'No'."
    • The Critic claims he always wanted to see Tobey Maguire (Lou) in pain, though he draws the line at seeing a dog being seriously injured, as shown in scenes where Lou's attempts at escaping his barn home fail miserably.
    • Because the puppies evacuated by dobermans were never heard from again, the Critic imagines them being sent to be turned into ingredients for Taco Bell's infamous breakfast meals.
    • The sight of Prof. Brody wearing a gas mask makes the Critic think he's making a bomb, and that he's about to auction it to ISIS. The Critic then asks for the numbers of anyone who wanted to go to ISIS auctions, before threatening to make a few calls (presumably to the government).
    • Once more, the Critic takes a swipe anew at YouTube's lax enforcement of the Fair Use policy, which led to multiple flags on his past videos (as explained in his "Where's the Fair Use?" editorial).
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: The Critic laments that the film had a fairly imaginative premise that was wasted on poor execution.
    "The idea for this is right out of a Warner Bros. cartoon; it can be pretty funny and imaginative. But instead, you're left wondering which category to put it in: 'kitty litter' or 'pooper scooper'."
  • Toilet Humor: One of the few things the Critic praises the film for is that an inevitable fart joke only occurred twenty minutes in, which he thinks is an eternity in "fart joke years".
  • Wacky Sound Effect: A sketch jokes that violence towards animals is tolerable so long as the sound effects are childish, evidenced by an enthusiastic Malcolm showing a horrified Tamara one such video on a laptop. Then Aunt Deceit plays Cats & Dogs on the TV, which they claim is "PG" because of this trope.
  • What Could Have Been: The Critic jokes that Cats & Dogs was supposed to be a crossover between CGI Garfield and Marmaduke (both of whose films were poorly received), but then even the production staff thought nobody would be stupid enough to do that.

Ah! Belly rub!
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