The Tick Pilot – Or Pardon Me, Your Angst Is In My Silliness

TickPilotI love the Tick animated series. Everything from the theme song to the battle cry to they way things like damage to the moon persisted through the series. It is brilliant and holds up well to repeat viewing. In 2001 when it moved to live-action, the writers were able to maintain a lot of the silliness that made the animated series fun. Though it didn't take off with audiences, they kept the heart of the comic intact.

As part of Pilot Season for Amazon, Ben Edlund the creator of the Tick, got a chance to make a pilot episode for a new The Tick series staring Peter Serafinowicz and Griffin Newman. I like Serafinowicz a lot. And I'll admit that I haven't read The Tick comics, so I can't say whether this new series is closer to the tone and heart of the comics… but this new pilot fell flat for me.

It's dark and a bit morbid. Arthur Everest (Newman) is massively screwed up after watching his father being killed and then a group of superheroes at the hands of The Terror (Jackie Earle Haley). Instead of being an accountant who accidentally becomes a sidekick, Arthur is a damaged character and there is some question of whether or not the Tick may just be part of his imagination.

I didn't laugh during the half-hour episode. Not once. The Tick's dialogue just felt out of place and campy trapped in such a serious setting. There is no joy. Nothing to make you smile. Its the tragic story of a young man who witnessed a horrible event that left him psychologically scarred and is being pulled back into the world that caused him so much heartache.

If you loved the animated The Tick series or the live-action with Patrick Warburton… pull out the DVD collections of those and skip this new version. Unless dark and gritty is your thing.

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About Dan Wickline

Has quietly been working at Bleeding Cool for over three years. He has written comics for Image, Top Cow, Shadowline, Avatar, IDW, Dynamite, Moonstone, Humanoids and Zenescope. He is the author of the Lucius Fogg series of novels and a published photographer.
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