Make It Stop

Posted: Monday, March 29, 2010 by Greg in

It's sad to admit, but the days of "timeless" cartoons is over. Go ahead, name one character you know of that your best friend's 5 yr old sister does as well. 90% of you probably just said 'Spongebob,' and as annoying as he is to me, I have to agree. Maybe it's a lack of original storylines, or an over-saturation of the Toon market, but for whatever reason, it appears to be impossible for a new cartoon to achieve iconic status these days. Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse, Snoopy, Garfield... They just don't make em like they used to anymore.

Odds are, if you celebrate Christmas, you can add one more to that list. Its actually more like three, and they go by the names Alvin, Simon and Theodore. Every November, radio stations everywhere bust out the old Chipmunks Christmas Single for our yearly reminder of what helium can do when inhaled. Don't get me wrong, I love it. I've been hearing it since I was 5, and I appreciate Christmas tradition more than anyone.

This is why, when they revamped the Chipmunks for a live-action release, I was skeptical. Hollywood had already brutally murdered one of my childhood favorites, so I didn't need it happening again. Not when Santa is involved. From what I've been told by girls who saw it (no guy would be caught dead), it was cute. Nothing special, but cute. That's fine. No legacy tarnished, no damage done.

Then came The Squeakquel. (You know somebody is still patting himself on the back for that title.) I received the same verdict for this one too: passive but cute. I was ready to close the book on this, and call it an overall success. Besides Tron, I don't expect any remake/revamp to ever outdo its predecessor. So in my mind, 'no damage done' is a success, and that was how this had gone down.

That was until they released the Squeakquel on DVD. It's availble March 30th, and comes with a second disc called The Squeakalong. Its exactly what it sounds like: a dvd of songs, in chipmunk voices, made to be sang along to.

Here is where I draw the line. I've been in media production for years, and I know how hard it is to compose an audio mix (I only ever finished one I liked). But one thing is NOT hard to do: increase the pitch of a vocal track so it sounds like the Chipmunks. It takes 5 seconds, period. But for some reason, YouTube is RIDDLED with morons who are real impressed with themselves, turning out unofficial "chipmunk" versions of every song you've ever heard. Go ahead, type 'chipmunks remix' into a YouTube search, see what happens. I'll wait.

Who listens to that trash? People who appreciate room for improvement? "Man, this song would be DOPE if it was humans!" It blows my mind. I don't need to know what Lil Wayne sounds like on helium, I'm just getting used to what he sounds like on xanax. The only thing I ever found OK with this short-bus phenomenon was that the actual Chipmunks weren't endorsing this garbage themselves.

WHOOPS. So much for that. Thanks Chipmunks, I officially respect Heathcliff more than you now. And NOBODY respects Heathcliff.


  1. Anonymous says:

    I miss classic cartoons. Looney Tunes and the old Disney cartoons were so much better than what they come up with now. Chuck Jones was a genius, he will always be an idol of mine.
    As for the chipmunks, I love Alvin. Such a menace.

  1. Anonymous says:

    "I don't need to know what Lil Wayne sounds like on helium, I'm just getting used to what he sounds like on xanax."

    hahahahahahahahhaaaaaa! hold on i have to clean up the pee that's dribbling down my leg....alright back now!

    you're a good writer greg. i definitely respect that.

    oh and what does it say about me that i had a crush on michaelangelo and alvin? i had a cartoon fetish at seven. creepsville.