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Moonbeam City is an American adult animated television series that was created by Scott Gairdner, and starred the voices of Elizabeth Banks, Rob Lowe, Kate Mara and Will Forte. It premiered on Comedy Central on September 16, 2015.[1]

Moonbeam City
Moonbeam City Title Screen.jpg
GenreComedy
Adult animation
Created byScott Gairdner
Directed by
Voices ofRob Lowe
Elizabeth Banks
Kate Mara
Will Forte
Theme music composerNight Club
Opening theme"Another One" (Instrumental)
Composer(s)Night Club
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes10 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Scott Gairdner
  • Will Gluck
  • Richie Schwartz
  • Tommy Blacha
Producer(s)
  • Rob Lowe
  • James Merrill
Editor(s)
  • Barry Kelly
  • Jeff Picarello
Running time22 minutes
Production company(s)
  • Olive Bridge Entertainment
  • Alphapanel Industries
  • Solis Animation
  • Titmouse, Inc.
Release
Original networkComedy Central
Picture format16:9 HDTV
Original releaseSeptember 16 (2015-09-16) –
December 9, 2015 (2015-12-09)
External links
Website

A parody of 1980s cop shows such as Miami Vice, it was animated in distinctively bright, neon colors similar to the style of the 1980s artist Patrick Nagel and the anime City Hunter, and featured a soundtrack of 1980s-style synthesizer music, performed by Night Club.[2]

On March 30, 2016, the series was cancelled after one season.[3]

CharactersEdit

  • Dazzle Novak (Rob Lowe): Protagonist and Moonbeam City P.D. detective, despite being especially unqualified for the job due to poor impulse control, horrendous reasoning skills, ridiculous libido and ego, and (often) even worse aim. He gets sidetracked from assignments to tend to anything he finds far superior. Any success is normally due to luck or the assistance of others (usually his junior partner, Chrysalis). Has an odd talent for invention and design, and is the son of stuntman Razzle Novak. Dazzle's mother died when he was a child. He has personal animosity towards Rad in his attempts outdo him as a cop—-even embarrassing him on a personal level. He seems to hate Rad so much, he excites himself anticipating his death.
  • Pizzaz Miller (Elizabeth Banks): Police chief, and Dazzle's irascible supervisor. Though she is sometimes at odds with Dazzle due to his shoddy police work and defiance of authority, she fails to harshly discipline him for even the most severe infractions due to an intense mutual attraction and affection between the two.[4] It is later learned that Pizzaz is an heiress (and eventual sole inheritor) to Moonbeam City's founder, laser prospecting mega-millionaire, Vector Azimuth Miller. Pizzaz also has four abusive and conniving sisters: Charisma, Panache, Sophistica, and Accoutrement.[5] She speaks with a slightly noticeable Southern accent. When either passionate or angry, Pizzaz narrows her eyes and a slanted window blind-like shadow appears over her face and body, regardless of the location and ambient lighting.
  • Chrysalis Zirconia Tate[6] (Kate Mara): Dazzle's rookie colleague. A former lab tech, Chrysalis is the polar opposite of Dazzle (competent, level-headed, responsible), and often the unintentional victim of his irresponsibility and poor impulse control. Chrysalis' job usually entails the detective work and technical aspects of the job, and she is often blamed by Pizzaz for Dazzle and Rad's inept behavior. Chrysalis is the daughter of eccentric Naval Commander Blade H. Tate.[7]
  • Radward "Rad" Cunningham/Manning (born: Gregory Manning) (Will Forte): Dazzle's equally incompetent, yet even stupider childish rival/teammate from Canada[8][9] in the Moonbeam PD. He fears authority more than Dazzle, and is prone to even greater lapses of judgment, usually when trying to outdo or outsmart Dazzle. While initially seeming fierce and threatening in the Pilot episode, Rad is eventually shown to be incredibly cowardly and immature, though not without moments of unexpected (and ill-timed) bravery. The series finale reveals (through Chrysalis' detective work) that Rad is the biological son of the billionaire computer founders of Canadian computer company Flamingo Computers, but was kidnapped as a toddler by the con-artist couple who raised him (he later changes his name to "Radward Manning" to distance himself from them). Rad himself reveals an intense (but mostly hidden) attraction to Chrysalis, though the feelings are not completely reciprocated by his teammate. He has a unique condition called "Mono-Toeism" which causes his right foot to just have one giant toe which takes up the end of his entire foot.[10] He is shown to be very poor as well as perverted.
  • Genesis Jones (Scott Gairdner): News anchor who appears in every episode. He often acts as more of a shameless announcer or sensationalist rather than a real journalist.
  • Mayor Eo Jaxxon (Powers Boothe): Mayor of the Moonbeam City who acts a lecherous tyrant. He speaks in a slow raspy register. He has an especially dark infatuation to Chief Pizzaz Miller. He uses his authority to continuously threaten to shutting down the Police Department, and moving the employees into the far more competent and successful Fire Department, in order to extort Pizzaz into having sex with him multiple times. He has a foot fetish and always travels with a pair of leopards (which he says can tell when people are lying). He has at least one son, who becomes addicted to the designer drug "Glitzotrene" that the police invented during the fifth episode to keep the station in business, but it is unknown if he has other family members. His name is a reference to the 1986 short film Captain EO and its lead actor, American pop singer Michael Jackson.

EpisodesEdit

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateProd.
code
US viewers
(millions)
1"Mall Hath No Fury"Mark BrooksScott GairdnerSeptember 16, 2015 (2015-09-16)1010.61[11]
An incompetent police detective named Dazzle Novak promotes a shopping mall singing sensation, while a petty thief Dazzle let slip through his fingers creates a cocaine empire and proceeds to overrun Moonbeam City, a crime-ridden beach city based on Miami in the 1980s. Guest starring Nick Corirossi and Cree Summer.
2"Lights! Camera! Re-enaction!"Mark BrooksRyan PerezSeptember 23, 2015 (2015-09-23)1040.52[12]
While DJing for a mandatory month underage rave, Dazzle becomes famous for stopping a juvenile bike thief and creates an over-the-top re-enactment segment for Crimezappers, Moonbeam City's premier crime show. Guest starring John O'Hurley.
3"The Strike Visualizer Strikes Again"Juno LeeTommy BlachaSeptember 30, 2015 (2015-09-30)105N/A
Dazzle, Chrysalis and Rad track down the murderous "Moonbeam Maniac", while Dazzle confronts a childhood hero. Guest voices include Peter Serafinowicz and Cree Summer
4"Quest for Aquatica"Mark BrooksScott GairdnerOctober 14, 2015 (2015-10-14)1020.53[13]
Dazzle is tasked by Chrysalis' father with finding a missing dolphin, but falls in love with one named "Splasha". Guest starring Patrick Warburton.
5"Glitzotrene: One Town’s Seduction"Juno LeeAndrew WeinbergOctober 21, 2015 (2015-10-21)107N/A
To prevent Mayor Eo Jaxxon from dismantling Moonbeam City's police department, the police hook the entire city on the synthetic drug "Glitzotrene", creating a drug epidemic. Guest starring Powers Boothe, Trace Adkins and Carlos Alazraqui.
6"Lasers and Liars"Juno LeeAndrew WeinbergOctober 28, 2015 (2015-10-28)103N/A
The team gears up for the Laser Ball, Dazzle and Pizzaz become entangled with her hyper-wealthy (and despicable) family, while Rad's lies become increasingly ridiculous while trying to join a yacht club. Guest starring Kate McKinnon, Paget Brewster, and Kevin McDonald.
7"Cop Con"Mark BrooksRyan PerezNovember 11, 2015 (2015-11-11)106N/A
At the 3-day "Cop Con" event, Dazzle and Pizzaz enjoy their annual passionate tryst. Meanwhile, Chrysalis avoids an obsessed fan, a frustrated Rad starts "Rad Con", and a cop-free Moonbeam City undergoes a community renaissance. Guest starring John O'Hurley, Cree Summer and Nick Corirossi.[14]
8"Stuntstravaganza"Mark BrooksScott GairdnerNovember 18, 2015 (2015-11-18)108N/A
Bitter in defeat from a racing challenge, Dazzle seeks out his estranged father to help him perfect a car stunt. Meanwhile, Rad faces the consequences of misplacing his parking validation card. Guest starring Adam West, Paul F. Tompkins and Nick Mundy.
9"The Legend Of Circuit Lake"Juno LeeTommy Blacha & Ryan PerezDecember 2, 2015 (2015-12-02)109N/A
In order to get revenge, Rad attempts to dig up embarrassing footage of Dazzle from the police records room. But things go awry, rendering Rad trapped in its virtual reality computer system. Dazzle ends up being accused and convicted of Rad's presumed murder, gets sent to prison and ends up having relations with its computerized artificially intelligent security system. Guest starring Tom Kenny, Susan Sarandon and Molly Shannon.[15]
10"The Wedding of Rad (Lie)"Mark BrooksScott GairdnerDecember 9, 2015 (2015-12-09)110N/A
In the series finale, Dazzle hooks up with the daughter of a crime lord. Meanwhile, Rad's family coerces him into a bizarre arranged marriage in order to con the entire Moonbeam City police department. Guest starring Kate McKinnon, Catherine O’Hara and Andy Richter.[16]

BroadcastEdit

Internationally, the series premiered in Australia on 15 November 2015 on The Comedy Channel.[17]

ReceptionEdit

On December 1, 2015, Moonbeam City was nominated for an Annie Award for Best General Audience Animated TV/Broadcast Production, but lost to The Simpsons.[18]

The first season holds a 31% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 13 reviews. Its consensus states: "Moonbeam City wildly overestimates the effectiveness of its attempts at over-the-top humor, leaving viewers with little more than a derivative disappointment".[citation needed] On Metacritic is holds a 52% indicating mixed or average reviews.[citation needed]

Mike Hale of The New York Times stated that "the look of Moonbeam City may catch your eye, but after a while, you may be tempted to say, I will bury you so deep the world's smartest worms couldn't find you". He also stated that the pop-culture references and satire were forced and the dialogue "tries so hard you can see it sweat".[19] Daniel Fienberg of The Hollywood Reporter claimed that the show would be able to stand "in a world without Archer" and called it thin and with limited potential.[20] Bob Sassone of The A.V. Club gave it a C+, calling it "more clever than funny with Archer vibes".[21] Brian Lowry of Variety claims that the show settles more for being puerile than clever, making it "less than dazzling".[22] Katy Waldman of Slate's review was scathing, stating that the series "is so willfully dumb that it might make you wonder if it is meta-dumb".[23]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Soules, Conor. "Watch: Prepare to be Dazzled by 'Moonbeam City,' Comedy Central's New Animated Series". Indiewire. Retrieved 16 July 2015.
  2. ^ Edwards, C. "Watch: Comedy Central Teases 1980s Crime Show Parody 'Moonbeam City'". Cartoon Brew. Retrieved 30 July 2014.
  3. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (March 30, 2016). "'Moonbeam City' Canceled By Comedy Central After One Season". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved March 30, 2016.
  4. ^ "Moonbeam City Season 1". Zap2it. Retrieved October 18, 2015.
  5. ^ "Lasers and Liars". Moonbeam City. 11 minutes in.
  6. ^ Tate, Blade. "Quest for Aquatica". Moonbeam City. 18 minutes in.
  7. ^ "Quest for Aquatica". Moonbeam City. 2 minutes in.
  8. ^ Miller, Pizzaz. "Mall Hath No Fury". Moonbeam City. 9 minutes in.
  9. ^ Cunningham, Rad. "The Strike Visualizer Strikes Again". Moonbeam City. 7 minutes in.
  10. ^ Cunningham, Rad. "The Wedding of Rad (Lie)". Moonbeam City. 15 minutes in.
  11. ^ Dixon, Dani. "Wednesday Cable Ratings: CNN's Republican Debate Tops Night + 'Anderson Cooper 360' 'House Hunters', 'Little Women LA', 'Property Brothers' & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved September 17, 2015.
  12. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda. "Wednesday Cable Ratings: 'South Park' Tops Night + 'Worst Cooks in America', 'Pardon the Interruption', 'The League' & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved September 24, 2015.
  13. ^ Porter, Rick. "Wednesday cable ratings: 'American Horror Story' and MLB lead, plus 'South Park,' 'Teen Mom II'". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved October 15, 2015.
  14. ^ "Moonbeam City Season 1 ep 7". Zap2it. Retrieved October 18, 2015.
  15. ^ "Moonbeam City Season 1 ep 9". Zap2it. Retrieved December 2, 2015.
  16. ^ "Moonbeam City Season 1 ep 10". Zap2it. Retrieved December 4, 2015.
  17. ^ Purcell, Charles (6 November 2015). "New This Week (Nov 9): Mr. Robot, Nashville, Legends, Rousey v Holm and live sport". The Green Room. Archived from the original on 7 November 2015. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  18. ^ "43rd Annual Annie Awards Nominees". Annie Awards. Retrieved 1 December 2015.
  19. ^ "Review: Comedy Central's 'Moonbeam City' Recalls the World of 'Miami Vice'".
  20. ^ "'Moonbeam City': TV Review".
  21. ^ Sassone, Bob. "Moonbeam City has Archer vibes and Rob Lowe, but it's more clever than funny".
  22. ^ Lowry, Brian (15 September 2015). "TV Review: 'Moonbeam City'".
  23. ^ Waldman, Katy (16 September 2015). "Moonbeam City" – via Slate.

External linksEdit