The Tick vs. Season Two
The Tick started as a comic book superhero spoof from NEC Comics. Our hero’s abilities include nigh invincibility, super strength, and drama power, which causes his abilities to increase during dramatic moments. His commitment to protecting The City along with his flair for expressive yet bizarre speeches compensate for his lack of intelligence. The best catchphrase he could come up with for heading into battle was “Spoon!” due in part because he was eating breakfast at the time. He has no secret identity and always wears his costume, if that blue suit is actually a costume.
In 1994, he first appeared on FOX Saturday mornings joined by his sidekick Arthur, an accountant with a moth suit, although some mistake him for a bunny, that grants him the power of flight. Other superheroes that populate The City are Die Fledermaus, American Maid, and The Sewer Urchin, parodies of Batman, Wonder Woman, and a cross between Aquaman and Rain Man.
The series is very outlandish and hysterical. There is no telling where the plot is going. It is a universe where anything can happen, and does, because the writers make it all plausible. The viewer doesn’t think twice when the Tick carves a sidekick out of wood when Arthur falls for a girl or when the Tick and Arthur get framed after they lose their arms to the villains Venus and Milo, who place them on robots and conduct a women’s wear crime spree. One of the funniest and oddest moments of the entire series is when Charles, a young boy who wants to be the Tick’s nemesis a.k.a. the Brainchild, kidnaps the Tick and renders him powerless by turning him into a two-headed bird that speaks French. The show's format is played with in the COPS-parody episode “Heroes.”
Voice actor Townsend Coleman perfectly captures the different aspects of the Tick’s personality, from his bravado to his breakdowns. Rob Paulsen took over this season as Arthur from Mickey Dolenz.
Season Two ran Saturday mornings on FOX from Sept 1995 to February 1996. Combined with the first season of Life With Louie, they made for the funniest hour of Saturday morning cartoons, well worth getting up for. Like the previous season set, Season Two is not complete as an episode, #15 “Alone Together,” is not included. No doubt a Tick fan will eventually make it available online in some form. Both omissions were written by future the Venture Bros. creator Christopher McCullough. Coincidence?
Amazingly, the set has no bonus features, which isn’t surprising as the Season One set didn’t either. It is disappointing though as Disc Two only has 85 minutes of content, so there’s plenty of room to have created something for fans of the show that will buy it. It’s surely the work of a super villain.