The first reviews are in for The Simpsons creator Matt Groening’s new Netflix series Disenchantment… and they’re not entirely glowing.
The new cartoon series takes us to the fantasy world of Dreamland, following the adventures of Princess Bean and her sidekicks – an elf called Elfo and a personal demon called Luci.
While the new series has garnered some praise, early reviews suggest that it isn’t quite what it’s cracked-up to be and that some of the jokes fall a bit flat.
However, others suggest it may be a slow burner that needs time to find its feet – after all, The Simpsons and Futurama took a bit of time to get going.
Here’s what the reviewers are saying:
“The first run of episodes is fine, but let’s treat them as a pipe-clearing exercise. Soon enough, the writers will start writing for the performers, the characters will start to pop, the show will lose its compulsion to push buttons for the sake of it (the opening 15 minutes alone feature fistfights, stabbing, heavy petting, hanging and two separate peeping Tom incidents) and it will settle into something special. There is promise in Disenchantment, but we will have to wait for it to be realised.”
“No-one should be going into this one thinking it’s going to be Groening with the gloves off just because it’s on Netflix. Instead, what the series will make everyone realize is Groening has never had the gloves on, to begin with. If you’re a fan of the kind of humor and style we’ve come to expect from The Simpsons and Futurama, then you’re going to be a fan of Disenchantment. It’s as simple as that.
“But, if you’re one of those hipster fans that proclaimed The Simpsons hasn’t been good since the ’90s and Futurama lost itself after moving to Comedy Central, maybe you should head elsewhere.”
“It’s recognisably a Matt Groening production, then (right down to the overbites and freeze-frame background signs), although it’s not yet the equal of his previous work. But Futurama didn’t peak until Season 4 — and, groundwork laid, there’s good reason to believe it’ll keep getting better.”
Den of Geek
“When Matt Groening develops a show, he’s able to assemble a stable of top-notch people for it. Basically, there’s simply too much talent in and behind the scenes of Disenchantment for it to fail. It’s a reasonably good-looking show. It’s a great-sounding show. It’s a wonderfully acted show. The storytelling is above-average sitcom fare (which is no small feat; great sitcom plotting is rarely achieved). Still, it’s just not all that funny.”
“It’s common for animated shows to struggle in their first season. Bojack Horseman and even The Simpsons didn’t really find their identity until their second and third outings, so we’re hopeful Disenchantment can salvage the best bits, like guest characters Matt Berry’s obnoxious prince and Noel Fielding’s warmly bleak executioner, for something more focussed and special in the future.
“Disenchantment, while wonderful to look at, is missing a soul which runs through Matt Groening’s best works. In a world of hyper-kinetic rivals like Adventure Time and Rick and Morty, this Netflix series is too reserved and inconsistent to be a satirical fantasy worth exploring.”
Disenchantment will drop on Netflix on August 17.
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