?Robot Chicken? and censorship; good and bad

David MacNeal

It’s been said television personalities double their laughs whenever they drop the f-bomb. Bleeping out those fantastic and, sometimes, excessive words displace the sincerity they’d usually have uncensored.

That’s where uncensored cartoon shows (or, in this case, stop motion) lose their flare.

The third season of ‘Robot Chicken’ on DVD, while on par and often surpassing its first season, makes the FCC look like comedic geniuses.

Hearing a Gummy Bear scream every expletive after being caught in a trap doesn’t carry the amount of laughs as it would censored. (Though it is funny the one time Albert Einstein curses at his wife.) And seeing nude Barbie Dolls without mosaics isn’t as exciting as imagined.

For the most part, the characters in the show teeter between absurd parodies and unwarranted anger, coaxing those remorseless yuks that make people ask: ‘Should I be laughing at this?’

If you’re already watching Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim block, then the answer is yes.

‘Robot Chicken,’ created by Seth Green and Matthew Senreich in 2005, whittles pop culture down to a depraved fist and extends the middle finger.

What makes this two-disc DVD set so great, besides the delivering season, is the studio tour, video blogs compilation, and ‘chicken nuggets.’

Andrew Racho, the ‘behind-the-scenes guy,’ does expos’eacute;s on writers pitching sketches, voice actors, and character fabricators (model making). There’s also a mini-feature on ‘Robot Chicken’s’ toy wrangler Hugh Sterbakov, who details the oft-felt guilt of watching toys people attach sentiment to get their heads torn off and burned.

To get a better idea of how well the ratings have treated ‘Robot Chicken’s’ creation team, watch the studio tour, which covers a large amount of offices and sets in a multi-level warehouse’mdash;half of the writers, producers, animators, and interns are equipped with Nerf guns (and they get paid for this).

The ‘chicken nuggets’ extra is a scene-by-scene commentary accessed by choice whenever an icon appears on screen. Often the quirks of knowing a sketches origin are odd and unexpected and so worth it.

As for the insurmountable violence on the third season, the Gag Reel on Disc One is a montage of extreme gore’mdash;a showcase in which toys and imagination should never be dreamt of.