Agent Elvis: The Satirization of a King

Photo Credit:

Finn Lyons, Assistant Arts and Entertainment Editor

With the recent hype around the king of rock and roll, Netflix cashed in on an opportunity to make a new animated show about Elvis.

The show Agent Elvis has an extremely unique style that captures a side of Elvis not many people know about. Elvis was a comic book lover, and this show is presented as if it were it’s own comic book.

Over the course of the episodes action sequences would be spliced up into panels, with the classic “POW” “BOOM” or “BAM” effects during combat. This stylistic choice is the best aspect of the show as it gives it something that not many shows get, and it is that genuine connection to one of Elvis’ favorite forms of media that gives this show life.

There is a lot of great things about this show. For starters the voice acting is phenomenal outside of one character, which we will touch on later. Speaking of characters, all of the characters (excluding the aforementioned one) are great. The original characters made up for this show are a treat. The standout to me is Kaitlin Olson as CeCe Ryder. She brings such a flavor to this show that was desperately needed. Don Cheadle as The Commander was mixed well with her as well. The whole dynamic between those two and Matthew McConaughey as Elvis worked very well. They all play off each other, and they really match each other’s energy. One other aspect where the show really shines is in the use of real Elvis songs. During each fight scene a different song is used and the beats of the song match up to the action, the “beatdown” if you will.

That is unfortunately the most praise that can be given to Agent Elvis. The show for the most part is a predictable mess of sex jokes, crude humor and awful side and one-off characters that really make you cringe and regret watching the show. The character alluded to earlier is Howard played by Jason Mantzoukas. This character single handedly brings this show from around a 7/10 to a 5/10. Every time this character is on screen he makes the most obscene joke, if you can call it that and they are just so out of place. He is this sex-crazed mad scientist that adds absolutely nothing to the show, and in face brings it down whenever he steps on the screen. His voice is extremely hard to listen to and does not fit with the more grounded voices of the other characters, his is more goofy and it really plays up the “look at me I say sex jokes I’m so goofy” persona. I digress; there are other problems with the show.

The side characters brought in for each episode are the most one dimensional characters I have seen in a while. The two that stick out as the worst are Charles Manson and Gabriel Wolf. Charles Manson shows up in the first episode and kidnaps Elvis’ friend just so he can meet Elvis and do a collaboration with him. Then Elvis and CeCe just kill him.The whole storyline does not make any sense, and it is not even like it introduces us to Elvis being a secret agent or CeCe it just happens and it is never thought of again.

Over to Gabriel Wolf. He is supposed to be this big bad guy for the finale. He is given about two minutes in the beginning of the episode for his backstory on why he hates Elvis, and then he does not even have a confrontation with Elvis. Elvis simply destroys Wolf’s satellite (Do not even get me started.) and Wolf is upset. That is the whole Wolf against Elvis storyline. It is not built up to the audience so why would you care about some random guy when Elvis himself had been building up to a whole other villain.

Robert Goulet, played by Ed Helms, is Elvis’ rival from the very beginning of the show. It could not have been anymore obvious that he was supposed to be the villain all along. What a surprise it was when Goulet was found out the be the villain all along, and this just flows back into the show being so predictable. There was no attempt to hide the fact that Goulet was the secret bad guy.

Overall, Agent Elvis relies on people’s nostalgia of Elvis despite the target audience clearly being Gen-Z and Millennials. The show has a solid idea playing into the conspiracy theory that Elvis was actual an agent for the government, and with the star cast it had everything going for it. It ultimately falls flat with its disgusting humor, simple plot, and awful characters. Agent Elvis gets a 5.5/10