Oh, my God. Wow. First thoughts I have when watching this, which is wow, wow, yes, yes, everything, yes, about this. I don't think I've ever been as physically freaking excited about a pilot for a television show as I've been this. Here's the thing about pilots for shows. Almost any show's pilot, they are bad, really bad usually. A great show usually has a weak, not that great pilot, because just getting out the clunky exposition will be hard for any show to do gracefully. Although this show does have a little clunkiness in its exposition starting out. Man, it gets through that in like two sentences, and then it's just off to the races. Here's the exposition. The show, takes place on a quiet long Train, is about a girl, Tulip Beetlejuice Van Helsen, great name, love it, who finds herself inexplicably stuck in the middle of nowhere on a train that goes infinitely. In the train car, each car does not make sense, in any sort of pattern or way. What I mean by that, to borrow an extreme phrase by a famed medical professional, they're often bigger on the inside.
What is the Infinite Train and what is going on? There's a few extra things. Tulip has a series of numbers tattooed on her hand, and is accompanied by, one, a robot with two halves to it, one half is super pleasant and nice and who loves everything, and the other half is less that. Being as this is, A, only a pilot, there's not a lot to talk about, I guess. She ends up in the train we see her, and I assume this is kind of going to be how the series goes, 2019. She ends up in a car, this one of the Kingdom of Corgia, run by King Atticus, who really coolly is voiced by Ernie Hudson. Ernie Hudson is one of those actors who, he's a cool, charming actor, even if the movies he shows up in are often far below his talent or usefulness. But I like to see him. He is a fun actor to be in, and I am always very happy when he's in a thing. He plays this part fantastically as Atticus, and the funny jokes are just giving thought to dogs, which is always enjoyable.
Then there's the other character we see right at the end. I guess spoilers, but it's 12 minutes and it's on YouTube, man. Just watch it. Just watch it. It's a steward who's a creepy, vaguely Misaki-esque robot octopus with mannequin face on it who is cool and creepy and signals a very good indication that this show, like a lot of these types of shows, can play the unintentional creep value very well. I'm sure why I took to this show, but I don't know why this felt like such a revelation to me seeing it. I love these weirdo, funny/creepy, spooky, vaguely existential stuff, and this show has a lot on its mind about numerology and philosophy, and I enjoy thinking.
There's a line Tulip has where she discusses how the numbers on her hand have to indicate something. They're not just nothing. You can't have nonexistent numbers that mean nothing. She feels like, yeah, that's cool, and I imagine any kid watching the show would be like, "Yeah, all this stuff we're doing with math is kind of crap." Crap's okay for kids to say, right? Yeah, yeah. There's that, and being as we saw her pass a chess room, so I like that. I enjoy a philosophical discussion with any sort of thing. Also, the animation is really cool. I never really know how to end these specifically well, mainly because I like a certain length to all of these, and this is one of the maybe shortest things there are that I've reviewed. I don't think I've spent a sec.
Is there any flaw in this? No, but I'm going to be trying to find something wrong with it because no show can be perfect, and that's the truth of that. Gosh, I'm really trying to think of something. The humor is relatively funny and it plays well into the characters' personalities, and unlike some people that I know, doesn't reach for comedy. There's two ways comedy can work, and sometimes there's labored comedy where people clearly set up and then there's just kind of situation comedy where the character interactions, it just sort of naturally happens. I think that's really effective with the dog scenes, which I would enjoy. You don't really see it coming, but when it happens, it happens, and that's pretty funny.
I know as a kid I would've dug this because as an adult I dig this, and I'm super excited for it. The world I guess demands thinking and logic in a way that you have to do this, you have to do that, and I'm as guilty as anybody who's like, "Oh, you didn't follow my predetermined path of what I think is inherently right and good, so screw you, you suck, and I'll be really mean to you and I'll feel really bad later on, but we're never going to ever see each other again." I got into an argument with somebody, but anyways.
I want to live in that world, man. The world itself is chaotic and unobtainable and incomprehensible in a really amazing way, and I appreciate that, and the chaotic nature of it is great. To quote the greatest movie ever made and the true deserving Best Picture winner, because there was no other movie that maybe defined the entire decade, Forrest Gump, we're all just little specks floating and unobtained by the world. That's why I kind of love it, because it's this logic. This world has a logic to itself that maybe will be comprehended at some point, maybe not, of an unknown place. I guess my life has all been about trains lately. I've been traveling recently by train, and I guess I should get this out there, I love trains. I find them endlessly fascinating and endlessly amazing, and to see this surreal, weird train is fantastic for me and it made me really happy.
I don't know if this will be addressed in the show, but I'm really fascinated by the place around the train. I don't know what that's for. I don't know why I'm so fascinated by the desert, that it's a desert. It's these margin things. I sometimes get really interested in shows. I find myself really watching the extra, and just because the desert landscape is so weirdly evocative in this short, I found that really compelling. Oh, that's pointless. Nobody cares about that, I guess, but I do.
I guess the last little thing is I'd like to praise Ashley Johnson's vocal performance. I haven't watched cartoons as of late, because I'm a grown-up, and I had to give up all the things I love to be in this boring world, a world full of gray machinations, but I'm told she's relatively newish to this or newish to me at least, and she's great. She's great. She makes her both sympathetically flustered but also funny, and she's a perfect vocal performance to center around this, so I give her a thumbs up, and I hope the show is a huge hit and we get 20 seasons and I want this to be a huge hit. Please let this be a huge hit. Please let this be the next Gravity Falls where everybody gets obsessed about it, so watch it, now. here