The back of the case for Robot Chicken: Season 6 promises “The cybernetic fowl from the adult swim late-night animated bizarre programming block is back with another full season of Emmy Award-winning stop motion comedy insanity! Twenty colossal, mega-sized quarter-hour episodes!” That sums it up quite nicely.
Robot Chicken is one of those shows that I enjoy but never go out of my way to see. When an opportunity to watch some comes up, like being offered a review copy of the new season, I jump at the chance because I know I’ll enjoy it even if I can’t stand watching more than a few episodes at a time. At least, that’s how it was in the first couple of seasons, but I watched season 6 in just two sittings. Seth Green’s (Family Guy, Buffy The Vampire Slayer) savant-like recollection of obscure pop culture is put to good use once again. Some favorite sketches from this season include the Planeteers turning on Captain Planet so he can’t stop their plan to destroy the U.S. Government (the greatest polluter of them all), and a sketch where the tellatubbies are recruited as new power rangers and have to defeat a giant monster unleashed on the Earth by Rita Repulsa.
There are many many sketches here that had me laughing out loud. One was a Cabin in the Woods parody, where the creators of Robot Chicken sit in their underground control room and unleash a zombified Joss Whedon on a collection of teenage stereotypes for the amusement of us at home. By the way, Joss Whedon actually lent his voice to the role, and hearing him complain about studio television and how Fox never gave Dollhouse a fighting chance while killing teens was hilarious. One of the best parts of any Robot Chicken episode is seeing who they managed to get for voice actors. Some of the highlights include Sam Elliott, Daniel Radcliffe, Alan Tudyk, Tom Hiddleston, Stan Lee, and Dave Foley. Many of whom played themselves or popular film characters they’re known for. Dave Foley even reprised his role as Flick from Pixar’s A Bug’s Life for a sketch.
The stop-motion animation is about as good as it can be. It’ll never feel completely realistic, but I’m not sure that’s what you want in a show like this. The aesthetic seems to be more in keeping with kids playing with toys in their room than actual realism, or even paying homage to the style of the various source materials at play here. The producers have moved beyond strict stop-motion, using other effects sparingly throughout this sixth season, but mostly keeping true to what has worked for them so well thus far.
The back of the case goes on to assure us the special features are “lovingly crafted and not in any way thrown together at the last minute! All on a spinny disc, read by lasers! LASERS! What, are we in space?” Every episode has commentary, there are deleted animatics, behind the scenes featurettes, and more. Available on Blu-ray and DVD from Warner Brothers on October 8.