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Western Animation / Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (2017)

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In 2017, Sony Pictures Animation teamed up with the Canadian entertainment company DHX Media to create an animated TV series based on their hit 2009 movie Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, itself loosely adapted from the children's book of the same name. Also simply called Cloudy: The Series, it is the first TV show produced by Sony Pictures Animation, and unlike the movie, it is done in 2D animation.

The series is essentially a prequel to the first movie, featuring a teenage Flint Lockwood as the protagonist and still as the eccentric young scientist he is in the films. While he hasn't gotten around to developing the FLDSMDFR that would make Swallow Falls world-famous, he has befriended Sam Sparks, who has just moved to Swallow Falls with aspirations of becoming a news reporter and a shared love of science.

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Now wait a minute, you're asking, didn't Sam and Flint meet each other for the first time in the movie? Yeah, well, don't worry, because the show came up with a way around that. You see, Sam and her family frequently move, which she really doesn't enjoy because of how many friends she's lost contact with as a result. So in order to prevent the memory of yet another lost friendship from saddening her, Flint has promised to invent a memory eraser for the two of them to use if Sam ever has to move away from Swallow Falls.

But things like that are not on the two's minds for the moment, so Flint and Sam make the most of their time as friends, developing inventions to help around Swallow Falls and getting into all other sorts of misadventures in the progress while also attending high school. The rest of the cast are present too, including a teenage Brent still riding on his fame as a sardine commercial mascot, Mayor Shelbourne now as the principal of Flint and Sam's school, Earl as their teacher (with Cal just being a baby), and Manny as the head of the school film club. Oh yeah, and Flint's dad and Steve the monkey are still around too.

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The show made its world debut in the United States on March 6, 2017 on Cartoon Network, with a sneak peek airing on February 20, 2017, and later came to Canada on YTV on April 6, 2017 (despite announcements from production associate Corus Entertainment stating it would premiere on Teletoon). The show ran for 2 seasons of 52 episodes, although in the United States, low ratings led to the show being shafted to Boomerang's SVOD service after the first 49 Quarter Hour Shorts were broadcasted, as well as the entire second season remaining unaired outside of Canada until Paramount+ picked them up a few years later.


Examples:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Gil constantly makes overtures to Sam and just as constantly gets rejected. Mayor Shelbourne has to point out on one occasion that the girl is just not interested.
  • Abusive Parents: Or "Parent" in the case of Mayor Shelbourne to Gil. Gil is largely used as a personal aide to the Mayor and is only given things if the mayor can profit off doing so, such as the Sardine drop in one episode so he can keep the winnings knowing full well it will end in a tie.
  • Age Lift: Cal is aged down from an eight year old, to a baby.
  • Alien Animals: One episode revealed that Pandas were in fact an alien species.
  • Alternate Continuity: Despite Cartoon Network calling this a prequel series, there are a couple details that don't match the movie timeline. For example, in the movie Sam and Flint met at the pier, but here they meet at school during a science fair announcement.
  • Amusing Injuries: Often. For example, in "Spoiler Orb" Old Rick (an old bum) meets his doom by drowning, being hit by lighting, and then battered by boats that drove right in the way.
  • Artificial Intelligence: Flint made an A.I. version of himself to "bounce off ideas" for his inventions.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: A lot of Flint's inventions such as the Chainsaw Washer, a dishwasher with chainsaws that spin on the outside, or the less lethal shower-chair.
  • Babysitting Episode: With "Baby" Brent of all people, just so Sam and Flint can make up the money for a board game they want in the episode "Baby Brent Sitter".
  • Balloon Belly:
    • Flint starts cloning bananas, and Steve, being a monkey, eats all of them throughout the episode until he's enormous.
    • Sam gets one alongside Steve after eating a giant jello mold to free Flint in the episode "The Inventor's Code".
  • Berserk Button: Sam freaks out at the mention of pandas in "The Pandas are Coming".
  • Big Fancy House: Mayor Shelbourne has a big mansion that's clearly more expensive than a mayor of a small town can afford on a regular paycheck, even if he's also a principal teacher.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Flint and Sam. No matter how hard they try to succeed, the town will always treat them harshly.
    • Gil Shelbourne is a spineless wimp who gets into all kinds of pain.
  • Boring, but Practical: In "Invent This", all of Tim Lockwood's "inventions" such as putting a piece of gum on a pencil so it'll sick behind the ear (which turns out to be Flint's idea that he forgot about) or shaking salt and pepper shakers a the same time.
  • Canon Foreigner: Gil Shelbourne, the son of Mayor Shelbourne, is new to the series.
    • Old Rick, as well.
  • The Chew Toy: Flint (even for stuff he didn't do wrong).
  • Cock-a-Doodle Dawn: Flint built a robot-chicken-alarm clock in order to wake himself up for school but it runs amok but crowing at everyone who tires to fall asleep.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: Sam believes that pandas couldn't possibly be real animals, but aliens:
    Sam: I have a very good reason entirely rooted in science: Pandas are not of this world! For hundreds of years, scientists have considered the panda an evil alien invader. Consider the following: Pandas have six digits on each paw, unlike any other bear. So what did they evolve from? Spoiler alert: Nothing on this Earth. Pandas' digestive tracts are designed for meat, but they only eat bamboo, and they only digest 8% of that. And why are they black and white? Nothing around them is black and white! What are they blending into? Nothing on this earth!
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: The various punishments the mayor puts Flint and Sam in.
  • Cousin Oliver: For whatever reason, the Mayor has a wimpy son that never had shown up in any of the movies.
  • Counterfeit Cash: Baby Brent's "Brent Bucks", just novelty cash with his face on it. The only place that accepts them as actual currency is the mayor's terrible "Shakespeare" plays.
  • Cuteness Proximity: The town refuse to listen to Flint and Sam's statement that the panda the mayor had brought from another zoo is an alien because the panda is just too cute. The whole town (except for Sam) soon falls under its spell.
  • Dean Bitterman: Mayor Shelbourne is also the school principal, and he treats it the same way as being a mayor.
  • Demoted to Extra: Manny is now relegated to minor roles and occasional cameos as the focus is more on Sam and Flint's daily adventures.
  • Didn't Think This Through: "Flint's Biggest Flup". Flint invents a horn which takes whatever goes in one end and multiplies it out the other end. He gives one to everyone (in fact using a flup to replicate one into dozens in front of everyone) and they all use it.......in every way except in the way its supposed to be used.
  • The Ditz: Brent, Shelbourne and Gil, Shelbourne's son.
  • Evil Counterpart: Hector Evilman to Flint. Both struggle with inventions and proving their genius to others, but unlike Flint, Hector has questionable sanity, not even one friend, and constantly tries (however poorly) to terrorize people.
    • Flart is another evil counterpart to the main protagonist. He's a virtual AI version of Flint who doesn't seem to be villainous at first, but things don't go smoothy for Flart, and as a result, he turned into a Hair-Trigger Temper who would stop at nothing to delete the real Flint and take over his life.
  • Evil Old Folks: Hector Evilman, who's an "inventor" and Mayor Shelborne's father ("Evilman" is the mayor's grandmother's name).
  • Expy:
  • Eye Beams: When Principal/Mayor Shelbourne gets really really angry he's somehow able to shoot laser beams from his eyes. And despite the episode being about Flint's chicken-alarm clock-robot making everyone sleep deprived this isn't a Dream Sequence.
  • Flanderization: Flint is both completely obsessive and oblivious, Sam has a knack for inventing, Earl is Properly Paranoid about Flints bungling, Brent is much more obnoxious and stupid and constantly wears a diaper, and Manny is much more goofy (but no less competent) and prone to smiling, Mayor Shelbourne now has an actual son to use and neglect.
  • Fat Bastard: Baby Brent, except even more stupid and callous. The Mayor also seems more portly, probably due to the art style, and is completely willing to abuse his authority for small-term gain or convenience.
  • Fat Idiot: Most of the time Baby Brent is stupid. Really stupid.
  • Grumpy Old Man: "Old Rick", a crotchety old homeless man.
  • Halloween Episode: Season 1 offers a two-fer, due to the Two Shorts format. "Mayornormal Activity" has Mayor Shelbourne set up a Haunted House scam to keep all the town's candy for himself, but the ghosts are real. "Flintenstein" is a riff on Frankenstein, and Flint has to protect his new creation from the scared townspeople.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Flart, the virtual version of Flint Lockwood, whenever things don't go his way. One example is when he wanted to give Flint another genious idea, but the latter was late for class, so he didn't have time.
    Flart: (enraged) Huh, "gotta go", huh? (growls in anger)
  • High School AU: The show is about Flint's stories "before he made it rain meatballs", according to promos. It's an A.U. because both Sam and Manny are students at Cannery High School.
  • Idiot Ball: A few times such as "Inventors Only" with Flint believing everything and doing an Obviously Evil "inventor" says and tells him to do just because Flint wanted to meet another inventor in the town.
  • Irony: "Flint's Biggest Flup" has him create an invention that everyone actually loves and uses. The problem is that no one's using it the way he intended, thus annoying him to no end.
  • Jerkass Ball: In "Out to Flunch", Flint is usually kind and willing to use his inventions to help others but for some reason, refuses to share his Flunchbox. Even Sam calls him out on this.
  • Kafka Komedy / Sadist Show: Flint and Sam just can't catch a break.
  • Laugh Track: Parodied by Hector: "And this is something I call Mice TV, the only sustainable future of entertainment! What makes it funny is the laugh track telling you it's funny."
  • Mad Scientist: Hector Evilman in "Inventors Only" but he's not some much of a scientist as a crazy old guy in a lab coat with no way of making his own inventions.
  • Mayor Pain: Mayor Shelbourne as per the movie is callous and self-centered and focus soley on pooling as much money as he can into his wallet.
  • Messy Hair: Or as Flint calls it "expressive".
  • Mythology Gag: The invention in "Flint's Fabulous Future" is designed to predict a person's future occupation. As in the first movie, Earl will become a police officer and Sam will get a job in news, while Brent is dressed like a chicken. This also features a rather morbid example, as Canon Foreigner Gil checks his future, sees only static, and suddenly starts coughing. In the last scene, Flint reboots it and sees his own future, which is an outright montage of clips from the movie.
  • Never My Fault: Nothing is ever Mayor Shellbourne's fault. No matter how obvious it is to everyone around him, Shellbourne can and will blame everybody else, usually his son, for things that are his own fault.
    • The school is falling apart and has zero funds to repair it. Shelbourne asks his son where all the money went, and Gil goes over a long, long list of expensive, uneeded luxury items that Shelbourne himself has bought with the budget, finishing it off by bluntly stating his father isn't fiscally responsible. Shelbourne says it's entirely the fault of overdue library books. Not anything he did.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: When Sam launches a sardine into Zang-Zang the panda's mouth, using a bamboo shoot as a blowgun launcher, she reveals the panda to be an alien. Unfortunately, she interrupts the dance of eternal life, and the panda aliens who find sardines disgusting, withdraw their offer of turning Swallow Falls into a paradise, and the townspeople are upset with her for ruining their chances at better lives.
    Panda Alien Mother Ship: Foolish Earthlings! We showed you the adorable panda dance of eternal life, but you rejected it! Swallow Falls was to be transformed into an everlasting paradise, but forget it now! We don't like you or your sardines!
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Flint normally has no problems using his inventions to help others but for whatever reason is hesitant to share his Flunchbox with the other classmates in "Out to Flunch".
  • Pandaing to the Audience: One episode has Sam confronting her fear of pandas and coming to the conclusion that pandas are aliens. She's right.
  • Phrase Catcher:
    • Flint to Oficer Earl. "Flintlockwoood!"
    • Gil to his dad Mayor Shelbourne. "DAAADDY!"
  • Robot Me: Mayor Shelbourne made a robot version of himself in "The Boy who Cried Robot" to avoid going to his openings.
  • Sadist Teacher: Mayor Shelbourne makes everyone's lives hell.
  • Self-Deprecation: In the episode "Flint vs. Flint", Flart (the evil AI version of Flint) was spammed with pop-ups, one of them being a pop-up about Canadian animation, worsening his Hair-Trigger Temper. Ironically, this cartoon was animated in Canada.
    Flart: NO! I DON'T WANT TO STUDY ANIMATION IN CANADA!
  • Slapstick Knows no Gender: Sam regularly suffers about as much slapstick as Flint does.
  • Sucky School: Cannery High. The teacher are pricks and the students are no better.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: Numerous episodes have Earl spending a good deal of time obsessing over Flint's actions and being in position to be humiliated as a result of the inventions. "Earl of My Dreams" shows that's actually taking a toll on his marriage; he's inadvertently ruining family functions, and Regina is this close to kicking him to the curb.
  • Toilet Humour: Not very often but it happens like in "Baby Brent Sitter" where Baby Brent belches, farts, and tries to get Sam and Flint to clip his toenails with their teeth.
  • The Unfavorite: Played with, in the case of Gil Shelbourne, who despite being the only son of Mayor/Principal Shelbourne, is barely appreciated by his dad.
  • What Do You Mean It's Not Heinous?: During the halloween episode Mayor Shelbourne bemoans his 'greatest pain' in life. That he didn't have all the halloween candy as a child. Not that he didn't get any candy, he got a room full of that. He literally wanted 'all' of the candy for himself. He was upset because other people had candy instead of 'only' him.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Flint messes with Sam's diary to see what she got him for his birthday but ends up humiliating her in front of the whole school by revealing her embarrassing secrets. Sam temporarily breaks up with him, vowing to never forgive him. They make up though.
  • Who Would Want to Watch Us?: In "Spoiler Orb". Flint and Sam skim through all of the books they never read when the titular orb tells them that one of them will meet their doom. The last book they read is about "giant food fall[s] from the sky". They find the topic hilarious.
  • Whole Episode Flashback: "Ratbirds and Cheesyworms" has Flint explain to Sam why he invented the ratbirds found all over town. It involves assorted hybrids and a giant worm made of cheese.
  • Wolf Man: In the halloween episode "Mayornormal Activity", Mayor Shelbourne turns into a werewolf before getting sucked up by one of Flint's inventions, a halloween bag with a vacuum attatched to it. He is actually seen as a werewolf again, only for a second, in the episode "Swallow Fails".
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