Disenchanted over Disenchantment

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Disenchanted over Disenchantment

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What if Game of Thrones was an animated comedy? This is the premise behind Netflix’s latest original animated series “Disenchantment.” Created by Matt Groening, the mind behind both “The Simpsons” and “Futurama,” the show is the newest animated series to premiere on the streaming platform. But does a series like this work well?


The show starts off with a fairly cliché premise: the rebellious Princess Bean doesn’t want to marry her fiancé. While the plot is simple, the series true focus is on the cast of characters; mainly consisting of adventurous alcoholic Bean, her personal demon Luci, a cheerful wandering elf named Elfo and Bean’s grumbling father King Zog. Their interactions are what make the show enjoyable–until the show moves on from the marriage plot line at episode three.

Unfortunately, their interactions soon become more aggravating then heart warming. Elfo is a character that gets less enjoyable to watch as the show goes on. His unrequited crush on Bean makes the show portray him as the typical “best friend” character that the audience is meant to want to get the girl at the end. Yet at the same time, his short stature and innocent nature make him feel almost like a child. The dissonance here only gets worse as the series goes on.

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However, the deciding factor for “Disenchantment” relies on the show’s humor. With most medieval fantasy plots like “Game of Thrones” and “Lord of the Rings,” the show takes a serious tone and uses dramatic themes. The focus on comedy sets this series apart from both fantasy and comedy shows currently airing, making the experience fresh to watch. This unique feeling begins to wear off as the show goes on, but it adds that extra pop to an unexpected joke during the first episodes.

The show’s humor is fun but safe. Much of it relies on violence, drugs and alcohol–all made funnier by the bright colors of animation. The humor is often hit or miss, but nothing outside of the expected jokes for the audience it aims at. As the characters lose their charm, the humor keeps the series enjoyable. It won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you enjoy the comedic tone of the show it can help you finish the series.

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There are other points where it’s unclear if something’s meant to be funny or not. In one episode, Beans’ eyes are implied to be blue, and another character is explicitly described to have one green eye as a defining feature. Yet, the animation style of the show is one that doesn’t allow for eye color. This could have been a joke, but no one mentions it, and the final effect feels like the writers weren’t communicating with the animators.

Overall, “Disenchantment” isn’t a bad show. The series thrives on a specific sense of humor–leaving some viewers bored or uninterested. If the prospect of “Game of Thrones” high fantasy with “The Simpsons” comedy intrigues you, then the show will be quick to entertain. You’ll find out quickly whether or not “Disenchantment” will leave you disenchanted.

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