Madeline as Phoebus and Pepito as Quasimodo, Hunchback

Madeline as Phoebus and Pepito as Quasimodo

What can I saw about the Madeline episode that features a meager attempt to reference the Hunchback of Notre Dame? It’s a lazy, confused mess that would rather talk about writing even though the people who wrote it don’t know the first thing about writing. It’s not charming, cute or insightful. It is weak and torture to watch and I didn’t care for it on any level.

Next Hunchback version after a short Winter Break. If you have a suggestions, let me know because I haven’t made up my mind yet.

I know I have mentioned the lesson before in other posts where I bashed, I mean reviewed, the Hunchback episode of Madeline  but I find that the way it was handle in this episode is so awful that it needs to be bashed more.

Madeline, Pepito and her friends read Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Madeline, Pepito and her friends read Hunchback of Notre Dame

I do not claim to be expert on the show, I mean I could only watch two episodes other than the hunchback one, but the two episodes I saw had two good lessons; one was altruism and not judging dogs based on breed (allegorical to racism).

In those two episodes people had to actively learn something and a sense development was achieved. The episodes were torture but there was at least a depth.

Madeline as Phoebus and Pepito as Quasimodo, Hunchback

Madeline as Phoebus and Pepito as Quasimodo

Then we get the Hunchback episode. Anything that deals with Quasimodo should be more or less deal with getting over looks to see who a  person truly is, unless it’s done as parody or satire. But this is a kids show so is the standard lesson should be applied.

The problem is NO ONE learns it because the episode doesn’t care about the Hunchback. Writing-wise the episode is all over the place so there is no time to for a character to grow or learn the Quasimodo lesson.

Pepito and Gerald Dippetty Doo, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Pepito and Gerald Dippetty Doo

Since everyone but Pepito gets that Quasimodo is awesome, he is the one who is at odds with Quasimodo’s looks but he only comes around to liking Quasimodo because his idol tells him that he is great and should play Quasimodo in the play. Then Pepito plays Quasimodo and good is in a dumb play but he learns nothing.

But there is nothing to indicate in the episode that Pepito is like Quasimodo, he is just a jerk throughout the episode, he made a much better Phoebus. But since he is the one in opposition to Quasimodo he had to be the one to realize how great Quasimodo is but it’s pointless if he just told it out right.

Quasimodo captures Ms. Cavell, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Quasimodo captures Ms. Cavell

The episode should have been about the girls meeting a Quasimodo-like figure, Pepito or one of the little girls judging him and then the Quasimodo-figure helps them somehow and the jerk learns that judging people based on appearances is a jerky thing to do. Cliche? Yes but at least someone learns and grows from the core Quasimodo-lesson-for-kids.

Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Madeline’s dreams

The title is also confused, as it’s Madeline and the Hunchback of Notre Dame. I know the scheme of the titles go Madeline and Whatever the focused is, but Madeline has no connection to the Hunchback. It should have been called Madeline and the Play or Madeline and Notre Dame.

Pepito as Phoebus, Madeline and the Hunchback image picture

Pepito as Phoebus, Madeline and the Hunchback

This episode is a mess for beginning to end and it’s no surprise that lesson is a mess and just tacked on to weak cash in episode.

Next Time; Conclusion, Thank God

Madeline as Phoebus, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Madeline as Phoebus

 

The Animation in Madeline is crap-poo. No, actually it’s worse. It’s not even bad enough to be delightful. No, it’s honest-to-god poo. But what makes it so bad besides every damn thing? Well, I will list three things because anymore analysis on this, is going to drive me to insanity.

 

#1 The Colors

Madeline, Pepito and her friends read Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Madeline, Pepito and her friends read Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

The Color design is dull. It tries to be bright and colorful but it meanders  in the dull. Honestly I could take the colors  as the tones aren’t awful and the gradient are ok but the  dumb character design ruin it,  which brings me to me second point;

 

 

#2 The Character Design

Ms. Cavell holding The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Ms. Cavell holding The Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

The Character Designs are flat, uninteresting and dumb. Sure they look like the books but while the books were endearing the character look stupid. With their cold soul-less black dot eyes, their blocky bodies  and there unvaried faces. They just look stupid in motion. Then we come to the problem real issue;

 

#3 The Laziness

 

Madeline or Pepito as Quasimodo  picture image

Madeline or Pepito as Quasimodo

The animation in Madeline is abject, unfiltered, pure  laziness.  Anything that could be good and endearing is trashed by the immense awfulness of the animation. The character’s motion are stilted and awkward. The repeat animation is laughable. The use Pepito as Madeline in a long shot which make it a continuity error. I’m sure this show has a LOT of them. There are dozen upon dozen still frames to pad out the ghastly time. They also you a dissolve transition to get the girls to turn at the end while they are brushing their teeth. Also that is another continuity error since it has the girls in their “magnificent” day clothes but the shot before that they were in their nightgowns. So much laziness in this show.

 

Madeline and her dumb song hunchback of Notre dame

Madeline and her dumb song

The animation in Madeline is one of it’s biggest failures. it hard to really get passed the crappy animation. I mean one could if the story and characters were interesting but they are not so the bad animation is really inexcusable.  It really is just crap-poo.

 

Next time – The Moral of the Story

Pepito and Gerald Dippetty Doo, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Pepito and Gerald Dippetty Doo

Ms Cavell and Floating paper in the Madeline and the Hunchback of Notre Dame  Song picture image

Ms Cavell and Floating paper

In the Madeline Hunchback episode, Ms. Cavell is trying to get the little girls into reading and writing. She takes them all over Paris and finally at the 6 minute mark, she introduces us to the Hunchback of Notre Dame, which is one of her favorites book. You would think after introducing the book they would talk about it a little bit, but no as soon as she spits out the title the song starts.

Some Guy and with a horse made of Steam, Madeline and the Hunchback of Notre Dame  Song picture image

Some Guy and with a horse made of Steam,

Madeline episodes alway have a song in them regardless if it works or not. So you might think that the song would relate to the Hunchback or Notre Dame but no. The song is about writing and how Great Paris is for writers.

Ms Cavell and a French Poem, Madeline and the Hunchback of Notre Dame  Song picture image

Ms Cavell and a French Poem

Considering writing is the overarching theme in this, it’s not a bad thing. What is a bad thing is that is the worst thing ever created by a human. A fair warning, this song has been known to kill people because it causes uncontrollable bleeding in the ears.

Madeline and her dumb song picture image

Madeline and her dumb song

Ms Cavell sings how Paris inspires writers. Then the girls sing the stupidest chorus ever;

                                             “Write, Write Write on the left bank.”
                                                  “Left, Left, Left of on the Right.”

I have no words for the stupidness that is those lyrics and they repeat it twice. The bulk of the song’s lyrics just repeat the same idea, Paris inspires writers. The rhymes are ok but they are not by no means great. For whatever ok-ness they might have the chorus ruins it along with instruments and the visuals.

Ms Cavell and Floating paper in the Madeline and the Hunchback of Notre Dame  Song picture image

Ms Cavell and Floating paper

The Instruments are mostly a crappy cheap electronic piano. I hear an accordion which is so french and cliche but honestly the accordion is fine. However that godforsaken electronic piano with it stupid glittery cheap sound dominates this shit-feast of song.

Slide Transition in the Madeline and the Hunchback of Notre Dame  Song picture image

Slide Transition during the Song

Then there are the visuals. Now I haven’t got into the animation of Madeline yet but here it is in a nutshell is what I think of it; IT FUCKING SUCKS. And my god the song portion is atrocious in the visuals.

First off let’s editing. They use fucking slide pushes. Which is a transition that pushes the clip from left right off screen. They feathered the edge to make it look soft and gentle but it looks cheesy as fuck.

Madeline and her dumb song hunchback of Notre dame

Madeline and her dumb song

Then the little girls sing the chorus in an abstract space with letters behind them as they walk without ever going anywhere. But look their legs as the step wide. Their legs shouldn’t go that wide without their torso going down. I know this trivial but it fucking bothers me. It also looks like they animated one set of legs and put them on every girl including Pepito…. Pepito has girly legs.

Madeline and her dumb song picture image

Madeline and her dumb song

It’s just laziness. But that is what the Madeline show is, Laziness, un-bashed and unapologetic laziness. Thankfully because it so fucking lazy the song is short. But even it’s length can’t help it from being the most awful song ever. Quickly, let me listen to I’d stick with you from the Disney Hunchback sequel. (listens to it) Ahhhhhhh….. way better.

Next Time; Let’s Complain about the Animation More….. (cries)

Madeline as Phoebus, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Madeline as Phoebus

Madeline and Danielle as the Captain and Esmeralda picture image

Madeline and Danielle as the Captain and Esmeralda

I will give Madeline a little credit, and this pains me greatly, but they did give an interesting take on Quasimodo’s character. It was about how he treats others and not how he is beautiful on the inside. I mean it’s still emphasis on Quasimodo’s inner beauty but it’s said in a different way and I can appreciate that.

I also like the girl who plays Esmeralda. Danielle, as she is called, looks appropriate to the role. Though they never mention Esmeralda as Gypsy, so it’s moot point.

Madeline as Quasimodo and Danielle as Esmeralda, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Madeline as Quasimodo and Danielle as Esmeralda

But my god how this episode fails to communicate the source material every chance it gets. It seems in a way a throw-away episode. I bet they were just trying to get Hunchback in before the Disney movie came out. Otherwise I’m not sure they knew Hunchback existed at all.

Madeline and Pepito in the mud Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Madeline and Pepito in the mud

 

This episode seems to have a little bit of an identity problem. It really can’t decided if it wanted to focus of the Hunchback and its children-friendly theme, writing, Paris love or mud castles. I mean it does take 6 minutes to get a mention of the Hunchback. And the Hunchback-focus is phoned in at best.

Pepito as Phoebus, Madeline and the Hunchback image picture

Pepito as Phoebus, Madeline and the Hunchback

Let’s tackle a big annoyance. The episode only focuses one two characters from the book; Quasimodo and Esmeralda. But Esmeralda is only mention because she was nice to Quasimodo. We hear of a Captain of the Guard which is Phoebus but his name is never stated. Other major characters do not exist in Madeline’s world.

Quasimodo captures Ms. Cavell, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Quasimodo captures Ms. Cavell

Then there is the little instance of plot the episode indicates at that are just off or wrong. First, the play starts with Esmeralda in sanctuary and Quasimodo brings her food. It’s not like the episode just skipped to that scene since Ms.Cavell assures Mr. Dippetty Doo that it will get better. This should be at the end, if it was crap to this point it’s not going to get better.

The addition of the Captain was only to shoehorn in since they couldn’t otherwise. And it was to act as counterpoint to Quasimodo’s looks. Then we have Mr. Dippetty Doo swinging down to grab Esmeralda while they are both in Notre Dame. That’s just silly. These two instances are the only indications of plot from the book aside from being way off they are lifted from the movies adaptations and not the book.

Pepito and Gerald Dippetty Doo, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Pepito and Gerald Dippetty Doo

Then we have Pepito learning to play Quasimodo because he apparently has a big heart. Pepito should have played Esmeralda with his level of selfishness, Oh wait, I forgot book-Esmeralda doesn’t exist here.

But in all seriousness Pepito doesn’t have an arc, he doesn’t seem to learn anything or reach any conclusions that was influence by Quasimodo. Mr.Dippetty Fucking Doo has to tell Pepito that Quasimodo is awesome. This just makes the episode really superficial and lazy. It’s really mind-numbing the lack of effort this episode has for the story. It didn’t celebrate Hugo’s work at all, it marred beyond recognition.

Next Time; the Stupid Song

Madeline and her dumb song picture image

Madeline and her dumb song

Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Madeline’s dreams

The episode starts with Madeline having a dream about various Hunchback imaginary, mainly bells and falling off a tightrope. At breakfast Madeline tells the other girls and Ms. Cavell about her not very interesting dream. Ms. Cavell tells Madeline she should be a writer and suggests that the girls should read books.

The girls then start reading books. It then shifts to Pepito, the boy next door who is the Spanish ambassador’s son. Pepito builds a mud castle while the little girls build a castle out of books and to make sure fits the rhyme it has a tower. Though somehow Pepito’s mud castle is more stable than the girls’ book one. Then for some reason Pepito’s pocket frog hops out and goes to the little girls house and knocks over their re-built castle……(Oh god we’re three minutes in and it’s insanely insipid …. someone help me please).

Madeline and Pepito in the mud Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Madeline and Pepito in the mud

Anyway, Madeline takes the frog back to Pepito, as she knows it’s his frog (she apparently has good frog recognition?), Pepito apologizes and then the frog ruins his castle and the girls are mad there is mud on their “Magnificent clothes.” Now I know what you’re thinking, What does this dribble have to with The Hunchback? I don’t know either. Who wrote this prattle? I would like to say it gets better but it get much worse, get out while you can, save yourself.

The Children with Ludwig,  Madeline and the Hunchback  picture image

The Children with Ludwig

Anyway, Pepito decides to sneak in to the girls‘ house and throws mud on the girls while they are reading. I think Pepito might have some issues. Anyway Ms. Cavell comes in and like more caregivers is upset by the mess and also by the lack of respect for the books. They then clean up the mess and go for a walk.

Ms. Cavell tells them that Paris is a great city for writers as everywhere they look inspires them. They then run into a writer named Ludwig at a cafe who is writing a children book. You see what they did there, because Ludwig is the name of the guy who wrote Madeline which is a children’s book… oh I can’t get over the sheer cleverness of that unless exchange …… (cries).

Ms. Cavell holding The Hunchback of  Notre Dame,  Madeline and the Hunchback  picture image

Ms. Cavell holding The Hunchback of Notre Dame

They continues on their walk till the come to a book kiosk-thing, where Ms. Cavell pulls up three random books. Which are “The Three Musketeers”, “The Stranger” and finally “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” which apparently is one of Ms. Cavell’s favorites. The episode decides that the 6 minutes of mud slicking and insipid trite cutesy-ness wasn’t torture enough because now they sing their token song…….I will get to the song later but let’s just say it makes any song from the Disney sequel look like Mozart.

Madeline, Pepito and her friends read Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Madeline, Pepito and her friends read Hunchback of Notre Dame

The next day all the children decided that they are going to put on a play of The Hunchback because Ms. Cavell likes it so well. (I can’t tell you how times they use that rhyme @@.) Pepito wants to play the hero like his hero Gerald Dippetty Doo always does (Oh kill me, a Gerald Depardieu joke @@). Madeline tells him that he will play Quasimodo who is very brave and very strong. Danielle (one of the little girls) also adds that Quasimodo gets the best lines……. ummmm, sweetie Quasimodo doesn’t. Pepito then thinks he is going to play a buff masculine hero. Oh Pepito, you dumbass. Pepito then runs of with book to start rehearsing.

As Pepito reads the book one of the little girls asks Madeline about the heroine. She tells them that the heroine is Esmeralda who is the only one who is nice to Quasimodo even though he is very ugly. Pepito then realizes that he isn’t going to play the buff manly hero. The girls then ask more questions like “does it have a happy ending.” I would say stupid little girls but seeing how many happy ending this story gets I’ll just roll my eyes.

Madeline as Phoebus,  Madeline and the Hunchback  picture image

Madeline as Phoebus

So it’s time for their play, oh goody-goody gumdrops (cringes). Madeline is playing Phoebus, Danielle is playing Esmeralda (which I was happy about), and Pepito is playing Qausimodo. But what is this? Pepito is missing, big obligatory French reaction AHHH.

Madeline as Phoebus and Pepito as Quasimodo, Hunchback

Madeline as Phoebus and Pepito as Quasimodo

Madeline finds Pepito and he says doesn’t want to be in the play. (With 10 other little girls and no other major parts why didn’t one of the other girls step in as Quasimodo?) Anyway, Pepito doesn’t want to play the ugly character and fears that people will tease him. So him and Madeline switch parts. Why does Pepito have to be in the play?

The Madeline Crew at Notre Dame,  Madeline and the Hunchback  picture image

The Madeline Crew at Notre Dame

The next day (my god this is taking forever), they go to Notre Dame for more inspiration. I guess the play went badly or did they ever put it on? Ms. Cavell explains that Notre Dame is awesome and while the little girls are impressed but jerk-face Pepito doesn’t care too much and asks what Notre Dame has to with the ugly Hunchback. Really Pepito, Really? I mean really? Ms. Cavell explains that Notre Dame was the inspiration for the book. She fails to mention that you know the book revolves around it!!!! Pepito then asks if they can go to the roof to which Ms. Cavell agrees. I smell lame hijinx ahead.

They all climb 380 steps and yes they waste animation on this. They get to the top and see gargoyles and this scares the little girls except Madeline (she’s the brave one, well she is the only one with any personality as far as I can tell). The rest of the girls run to Ms. Cavell and she tells the dimwit girls that the gargoyle ward off evil sprites.

Quasimodo captures Ms. Cavell,  Madeline and the Hunchback  picture image

Quasimodo captures Ms. Cavell

At the top Madeline and Pepito see a no entry sign but they don’t let that stop from their mission to look around, so they go on through. So Ms. Cavell goes on the roof to stop them just then Quasimodo yells “Sanctuary” swings down and grab Ms. Cavell! Wait What? What a Twist? Quasimodo actually going to a character in this? Maybe this will get interesting, oh wait, it’s Madeline, it won’t! Now I feel like an idiot.

Hunchback Movie Crew, Madeline and the Hunchback, picture image

Hunchback Movie Crew

As it turns out it was just part in a movie and  the actor playing Quasimodo picked up the wrong girl. Why is Quasimodo picking up Esmeralda when she in Notre Dame and Why Esmeralda is dress like a nun? I don’t know (though Ms. Cavell is actually a nurse). Pepito thinks the actor’s voice sounds familiar and as it turns out it’s Gerald Dippetty Doo (words can not express what a stupid name that is).

Dippetty Doo (Oh Good God I’m going to have to type that out) asks Ms. Cavell how he can make it up for grabbing her and the girls says that they way he can make it up to Ms. Cavell is going to their stupid play. Do the little girls make all Ms. Cavell’s decisions? Maybe she wanted a fancy dinner or something? What inconsiderate little girls.

Madeline as Quasimodo and Danielle as Esmeralda, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Madeline as Quasimodo and Danielle as Esmeralda

Anyway they perform the play and Dippetty Doo is in the front row, although to be fair there is only one row. So act one starts with Quasimodo saving Esmeralda and brings her cheese and then Phoebus come in to Notre Dame. Did anyone read the book? Or watch one the movies? Or anything? Who wrote this?

Pepito and Gerald Dippetty Doo, Madeline and the Hunchback  picture image

Pepito and Gerald Dippetty Doo

Dippetty Doo then comes back stage and says he liked Madeline and Danielle performance and when pressed says he liked Pepito’s mustache. Pepito, dejected, goes back to his mud castle. Dippetty Doo finds him and tells him he has a bad leg. He says to Pepito that it’s not what you look like that matters it is how you treat others and that is why he loves Quasimodo because he had a great heart. Dippetty Doo thinks Pepito would make a great Quasimodo. I’m not quite sure sure how he reached that conclusion.

Ms. Cavell gets META, Madeline and the Hunchback picture image

Ms. Cavell gets META

So they redo the play with Pepito as Quasimodo and he does a great job (or so they tell us.) The next day (it just keeps going), Dippetty Doo returns and gives the girls more books (oh joy the promise of more mangled plays). The girls read and they the go to sleep. Ms. Cavell says that tomorrow she will read them the book that Ludwig wrote which is about 12 little girls who live in Paris…. OMG how META! Who could have seen that one coming, you just blew my mind stupid episode. Though this show makes me want to blow my mind.

Oh thank god,  it’s over. Finally! 23 minutes is just too long

Next Time; Madeline’s Understanding of Hunchback

Pepito as Phoebus, Madeline and the Hunchback  image picture

Pepito as Phoebus, Madeline and the Hunchback

In an Old House in Paris that was covered in vines
was the backdrop of a show that makes me cringe every time.

I’m of course speaking about Madeline
an adaption of the books that would a make festering boil shine

Ok, I’m not good at rhyming.

So Madeline was originally a book written by Ludwig Bemelmans. He first wrote it in 1939 and following the success of the it he continuing writing other books about Madeline in the 40’s and 50’s. It has been adapted many times for film and television.

 

Madeline tv show, picture image

Madeline

The Tv series that started in 1993 and run spastically till 2001 had one episode (that I will allow myself to be aware of) that revolved around The Hunchback of Notre Dame. This episode was the 8th episode in season 2 which aired in 1995. It’s called Madeline and the Hunchback of Notre Dame. Isn’t that just the most creative inspired title ever? (gags)

If you haven’t figured it out yet, I don’t care for this show. I forced myself to watch two other episodes and it was like torture.

So this review series is going to be hellish….. Enjoy my pain as we review Madeline and the Hunchback of Notre Dame.

Next time; The Plot… or something like a plot

Madeline, Pepito and her friends read Hunchback of Notre Dame  picture image

Madeline, Pepito and her friends read Hunchback of Notre Dame