The decline of Western Civilization is reaffirmed with MTV’s newest animated offering, “Beavis and Butt-head.”
Spun off from MTV’s weekly animation series “Liquid Television,””Beavis and Butt-head” features two teens meandering through suburbia, laughing evilly to themselves and loudly contemplating violent acts, all the while humming a demonic heavy metal anthem.
The episode’s opening sequence is strong and well paced as a locked-in-the-‘ 60s teacher tells the two to collect money for starving children overseas.
One of them — it’s never clear who’s Beavis and who’s Butt-head — wears a Metallica T-shirt while the other sports an AC/DC shirt.
Of course, the two encounter only the dregs of society: a jobless guy, a drunk and an S&M queen who eventually sends $ 100 to the teacher for Beavis and Butt-head’s fine charity work.
The episode’s breakdown occurs soon after.
The producers either are used to the five-minute format of “Liquid Television” or they purposely are avoiding linear scripts; either way, the lack of a plot becomes the show’s biggest disappointment.
The last half of the show is supplemented with long snippets of actual musicvideos that the two watch.
While the videos explain the apparent brain damage to Beavis and Butt-head, they slow the show down.
The show has some funny lines, though.
“Watch the flashbacks,” they say out loud as their hippie teacher talks about the ’60s.
As the two watch a Judas Priest video, one mutters, “I feel like killing myself,” referring to the suit filed against the group when a teen killed himself while listening to Judas Priest.
The animators have found their own style, and the feel of the show, like much of the script, is subtle.
The voices of Beavis and Butt-head (Mike Judge did the character design/voices) are a fiendish monotone peppered with their trademark laugh that will no doubt be imitated in high schools all over the country.
And, face it, this show is for teens, and parents wanting to confirm their worst fears.
“Beavis and Butt-head” starts out with a Led-Zeppelin-like bang and ends with a Debbie Gibson whimper.
With a tighter script, this could be precious metal for MTV and the youth carrying on the decline of Western Civilization.