Today is supposed to be "Throwback Thursday", so I'm "throwing back" to a few years ago, when I was still doing commercial art. I had signed up with Guru.com, and my first assignment was to animate Carmelo Blanco's cartoon show Jackass Penguins. As you can probably tell by the title, this was an adult-oriented cartoon that Carmelo hoped to sell to cable or Netflix or one of those.
Jackass Penguins was the tale of Marco Pollo, a put-upon penguin living in the Antarctic and toiling away at a fish vending job where he dealt with stupid customers and a nonsensical boss. His great dream was to be a writer, and in the pilot episode he got the day off and started to compose when he answered "The Knock of Destiny"--and his life changed for the crazier! Here's the opening:
The reason Carmelo Blanco chose me to animate was because he liked my "determination", which he saw in my sample animation. Being a woman of faith, I was a little reluctant to take on a TV-14 kind of cartoon, but I did, and when I read the script, I saw it was a clever story and not just a bunch of swear words and sexual situations. Marco gets involved with a sassy, profane amnesiac snowwoman whom he names Snow Chick; they're captured by her creator, mad scientist squirrel Dr. Nutterbutt; and in the end encounter Pimp Big Pole, the polar bear ruler of Pimpland, whose motto is, "Once a lyin' ho, always a lyin' ho." Oh, and there's this really dumb penguin who orders fish that aren't on the menu.
I especially liked animating the opening--to me, it's the best part of any cartoon show. After all, it does establish every show's episodes and characters and makes you want to see the show. And if the opening gets you pumped up, then it has done its job.
I really wish Jackass Penguins went further than the first episode, but Carmelo could not get the money to make more, so he went back to his regular job and caring for his wife and little son. I got paid well enough for that first episode, and it proved that I can do work on an animated series. Perhaps I should make one of my own--without the cussing, of course!
I leave you now with the outro of Jackass Penguins: