The boy-oriented Disney XD previewed “I’m In the Band” a few months ago, but this live-action cartoon of a series hasn’t mellowed much with age. Owing a debt to “This Is Spinal Tap” and “Almost Famous,” the fertile premise evaporates amid bad puns, slapstick and fart jokes. Then again, most of the comedy that would naturally flow from having a teenager land a spot in his favorite fictional metal band is inherently neutered by skewing the festivities to an under-12 audience.
In the premiere, teenage Tripp (Logan Miller) receives dating advice from the members of Iron Weasel, the has-been rockers who have taken up residence in his house. They consist of swaggering Brit lead singer Derek (Steve Valentine) and crazed side men Burger (Greg Baker) and Ash (Stephen Full).
There’s a decidedly ’70s feel to the G-rated proceedings, what with the trio running afoul of a former roadie turned wrestler and giving Tripp poor romantic advice so he’ll be crushed enough to finish writing a potential hit song titled “I Wanna Punch Stuff.”
The idea of meeting one’s idols and witnessing their foibles firsthand is always promising, but “Band” lacks any of the requisite spark to pull that off — content to blandly portray the band as overgrown children (it’s no accident the press release refers to them as “three stooges”), turning Tripp into their unlikely baby-sitter.
Granted, it’s tough to thread that needle, but the venue proves a bad fit — bereft as it is of the sex and drugs one would associate with the setting. Maybe next time on Disney XXX.