Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Unnecessary Rankings: Animaniacs Songs

With the NBA Finals still two days away, I need another avenue in which to channel my creativity—and by, "channel my creativity," I mean, "find new ways not to succumb to sheer boredom." Hey, David Stern, I know that the Lakers-Celtics series gets you all giddy; but you're going to have to find a better way to fill in the time other than having ESPN showing the cheap shot on Kurt Rambis. I didn't even hyperlink to that clip because I'm really sick of it. Anyway, onto the intent of this post...

Growing up in the 90's in the Chocolate City metro area, I was exposed to a lot of things. Mayors getting busted for drugs, the Washington basketball team naming contest, and Michael Westbrook are all things I would classify as negatives. However, one positive I can say is I was a product of the greatest era of cartoon shows in the history of animated television. Continuing with a theme I started on Facebook, I'm going to rank songs from cartoon shows, by show, every once in awhile. From time to time, everyone needs a break from the monotony of life, so these silly lists are that break. Besides, who doesn't love a good cartoon? First up is Animaniacs.

Steven Spielberg's animated creations—Yakko, Wakko, and Dot Warner—owned animated comedy for much of the mid-90's. The Warner Brothers (and the Warner sister) are the monkey/dog/cat/bunny-like reincarnations of their Looney Tunes ancestors. They cause all the havoc of Bugs Bunny, times three. But as silly as this show is, it had some pretty educational stuff in it. It was like Sesame Street, only with more anvils. Besides classic skits like "Mime Time" and "Good Idea, Bad Idea," this show had some pretty awesome songs; and I will be ranking them. Poor Dr. Scratch-n-Sniff. I couldn't find enough quality Animaniacs pictures for this, so randoms it is. Let's reveal the rankings...

10.) The Ballad of Magellan

Kicking off this list is the Warners' song about the travels of explorer Ferdinand Magellan. In this song, the Warners accompany Magellan, accidental discoverer of the world's roundness. I don't know if he encountered that much bad luck along the way, but one only thinks its justified since he searched for India...by sailing westward. Sixteenth century inventors were semi-douchebags, but that topic's not for this here blog.

9.) Yakko's Universe

Like the oldest Warner said, "It's a great big universe; and we're all really puny." While I maintain I'm bigger than Mickey Rooney, I can't help but notice the evolution overtones in this song. In fact, they even redid a line: something about being essential when you're really inconsequential. There's another line about evolution in that song, but it doesn't take away from it's musicianship.

8.) The U.S. Presidents Song

All three siblings combine to take us through the 42 (at the time) P.O.T.U.S. in chronological order. They even provide a little rhyming quip of information about each Commander in Chief. I certainly didn't know that Thomas Jefferson had a fight with his wife, and had to sleep on the couch. Maybe that's why he fathered all those slave children had more time to write the Declaration of Independence.

7.) Schnitzelbank

In this episode, the Warners venture to Germany to learn the universal song of friendship. I can't pronounce the doctor's name; and if you can, then you have wasted a period of time in your life that you can't get back, smart person. I don't understand German, but for the most part, the song's lyrics are: "Is this a [insert thing here]? Ya, this is [insert thing here]!" Who cares? It's dope.

6.) The Senses Song

Everyone knows there are five actual senses, a sixth sense that's common sense, and a host of other figurative senses. Well, in case you didn't, the Warners outline most of those for you in this song.

5.) I'm Cute

Dot takes the lead in singing about her favorite topic: how cute she is. Yakko and Wakko get increasingly bored backing up their sister's narcissism; and Dot gets increasingly angry with them. The joys of having siblings, I suppose.

4.) What are We

I'm sure every kid wondered what animal the Warner siblings are. To this day, it still hasn't been settled. Dr. Scratch-n-Sniff was brave enough to ask Yakko, Wakko, and Dot. Big mistake, Doc. You should have stuck to your guess that you sang about in the next song on this countdown.

3.) The Monkey Song

As stated above, the Good Doctor calls the Warners monkeys. I don't know what scientific research he used as a substantial basis for his hypothesis. Meaning, I don't know of any monkeys with floppy ears and tails. Anyway, the Caribbean vibe to this joint was a nice touch. And yet again, the suggestive lyrics when Yakko and Wakko are ogling Hello, Nurse. Good thing you don't have to explain those kinds of things to toddlers...yet.

2.) I'm Mad

Another colossal mistake by Dr. Scratch-n-Sniff. He decides to take the Warners on a long road trip to an amusement park. If you have been in the car with young siblings, you know how annoying they become to each other and to the adults present. However, it ended up working out; and everyone had a good time...for the most part.

1.) The Nations of the World

An easy number one choice to me. It's also the reason why Wakko's rendition of the 50 U.S. states and their capitals didn't make this list. The other ten songs are too good to leave off, and with Yakko's world song on here, I was able to have both. Don't like it? Why are you being picky anyway? Back to Yakko, the fact that someone took the time to rhyme every country in the world is amazing. It's also proof that this show wasn't a waste of the E/I rating it received. As I stated, Animaniacs is educational, except it has more physical comedy.

So there you have it. Agree, disagree, be indifferent, or whatever. There's no denying the awesomeness of Animaniacs. Now, I leave you with this "Good Idea, Bad Idea" compilation, for your inner child's enjoyment.


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