I remember Veggietales as a child, watching all of those nutritious bible stories with catchy-cheesy toons. Looking back at the older versions, I feel quite disturbed by the dated animation. I’m one who still enjoys Nintendo 64 games, yet cannot process an old computer animation, not to come from Pixar or a decent video game of that time.
Well, the creators of this series agrees as they’ve recently launched a reboot on Netflix, known as Veggietales The House, with an updated art style, animation and synopsis. Of course, the classic kids show’s once massive popularity has been long dead at this point and those who’ve stuck with it all this way have been upset with these changes.
As for what I think…
Outside of art style, a couple of cast changes and a new theme, the core essence of this 27t year old program hasn’t changed a bit. Bob & Larry (voiced once again by Phil Vischer and Mike Nawrocki) are now roommates in a doll-house apartment, living distant, but close to all of the classic talking veggies that you might recall.
Each episode is them getting off to some shenanigans, having to each learn lessons of their own, referenced from the bible, with some gags and sing-along shorts in each episode. And…that’s pretty much it. Every episode and season goes about its way in a similar fashion, but introducing new characters each season.
All of them are either voiced by Phil, Mike, Rob Paulson or Tress MacNelie, with guest voices from 90s stars like Maurice LaMarchie and Kel Mitchell. What I find the most interesting is that the series script writer is Doug TenNapel, who was the creator of Earthworm Jim.
Though with that being said, his clever writing from that cult platform videogame series does no transfer over here. This is something you’d see on PBS kids or Nick Jr, had it not been for the stunning visuals. This show is very fun to look at and all of the characters are sort of channeling a SpongeBob Square pants tone (minus the craziness of that series), their voice work is expertly done, knowing that just four actors had to make different pitches for over a dozen characters and succeeding for the most part.
Take these great points out of the picture, and you’ve got a formulaic Christianity show with a nice atmosphere. All of the lessons, comedy and structured personalities are things you’d see from several animated or live action show that’s targeted for very little children. The sing-a-longs is the part I’d most unfavorably compare to the original, with characters creating tunes out of common phrases with all of the surrounding veggies wiggling to the music.
Come to think of it though, this would be better to put on than those other kiddie shows just because of the animation and voice work. So, if you don’t look deep into this and accept that Veggietales is not for you anymore, but maybe your young son or daughter, you’ll find this to be just fine.
If you really want a Veggietales for your age, just stick to Sausage Party.