July 6, 2009
Cooped up with ‘Robot Chicken’
Stop-motion animation hasn’t been this much fun since MTV’s “Celebrity Deathmatch” and “Mad TV.” I’m referring, of course, to “Robot Chicken,” Cartoon Network’s irreverent look at pop culture via action figures, which returns with new episodes on July 26.
Creator and executive producer Seth Green paid a visit Sunday to Anime Expo, dragging along writers Doug Goldstein and Tom Root, among others. After plugging the Robot Chicken on Wheels ’09 Tour (7/25 Comic-Con, 8/1 L.A.) and the DVD release of “Robot Chicken: Star Wars Episode II,” Green played to the otaku by discussing his new series, “Titan Maximum,” a spoof on Japanese five-in-one robot shows, like “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” and “Voltron.”
But I wanted to know why a show like “Robot Chicken,” which features such uber-Jew talent as Green, Goldstein, Matthew Senreich, yada yada, has taken pass on Jewish humor over the past two years. The last Jewish-themed bit was 2007’s “Not One More Day” (unless you want to count the very brief “Scooby-Jew” gag in the first episode of season four):
Green started off by telling me about something actress Alex Borstein (Lois on “Family Guy”) said to him after learning about “Robot Chicken”: “The moment you put a bunch of Jewish writers in a room, you’re going to get a ton of Hitler jokes.”
“And we did, “he said.
Goldstein jumped in then to tell me about one of his most recent Jewish sketches, which has yet to see the light of day and will probably end up on a future “Robot Chicken” DVD. He calls it “Anne Frankenstein.” After Anne Frank dies, he says, she’s resurrected to fight the Nazis.
It’d certainly be wrong (not original, but wrong). However, there’s no way it can compare with “Ross Hashanah, American’s No. 1 Jewish superspy.” “Get chillin’ with the tefillin!”