Rewatching Garfield & Friends

Since learning a few days ago both that the first two season of Garfield & Friends are on Netflix and that they’ll cease to be there come the end of the month, I’ve seen rewatching mostly the second season, trying to see how much of it I can remember watching on TV as a kid(I suspect much of what I saw was the later seasons, but there are some episodes of this one I remember watching).  I do wonder why its quality on Netflix is so poor, though; it looks like they ripped if off some set of old homemade VHS cassettes-was there really no better prints available anywhere?

Like everything one experiences as a kid, the individual cartoons in each episode-there were three per episode roughly seven and a half minutes in length each, plus shorter one-minute “quickies”-seemed much longer and their stories more complicated then than they really were.  Also it’s only rewatching that I see how many musical numbers there were; at least one per episode and sometimes more.  Perhaps there seem to be more of those because they sometimes weren’t very necessary and/or very good.  But the show still is funny, sometimes even fall-over-laughing funny.  At one point I wondered at the relative lack of parental bonuses(although there was one Sondheim reference!), but they aren’t needed; there’s still plenty for the adults to laugh at.  Some of the cartoons are funnier than others, although I haven’t paid that much attention to who wrote what.

The lack of female characters does feel annoying now, though, and when so far the second season doesn’t seem to have that much of Arlene, and not that much more of Liz either.  Of course, part of the reason I didn’t mind as a kid was because back then I thought Nermal was female…

Also, as a kid, I often recognized the quickies as direct adaptations of actual Sunday strips if I happened to know those strips(including an adaptation of my favorite Sunday strip of all time, though I’m pretty sure that one was done in a later season), but now I can spot when they probably were, and also recognize them even when elements have been changed for adaptational purposes.  At one point I wondered even if all the quickies were adaptations, but there’s at least one I saw that’s definitely not, since it directly referenced the cartoon beforehand(it was also a screamingly funny one, btw).

Unfortunately I’m probably not going to get everything watched before it leaves Netflix.  Is it available anywhere else?


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