"Kid Notorious" Review
By Shawn McKenzie 12/05/2003
I have never seen a man make a career out of talking about himself like that of Hollywood producer Robert Evans. The man who produced big Paramount movies in the early ‘70s like Love Story, The Godfather, and Chinatown, has made a comeback of sorts talking about his life. It all started last year with the documentary The Kid Stays in the Picture, which was probably the second most talked about documentary of the year, behind Bowling for Columbine. It was based off his best-selling autobiography of the same name and used an innovative technique of pasting cutouts over archived footage, a technique most recently used in Tupac: Resurrection. Now he has this fictional animated series on Comedy Central called “Kid Notorious” that is only partially based on his real life. Unfortunately, it isn’t as entertaining as the movie.
The show follows the adventures of Evans (voiced by the man himself.) He lives in his spacious mansion called Woodland with an ensemble of characters. Despite being 73-years-old in real life, the show makes him look young and vibrant. He is able to make almost any woman sleep with him by just saying, “You take my breath away.” His faithful butler, English (voiced by Alan Selka, Evans’ real-life butler), would do anything for his boss, much of which seems to include bodily harm and serving Evans his cosmopolitans. Evans’ housekeeper/cook, Tollie Mae Wilson (voiced by Niecy Nash), doesn’t kowtow to anyone, and is obsessed with Denzel Washington. Evans’ kitty cat, Puss Puss, is his pet and script doctor. Evans always turns to him when he wants to make a convenient change to a movie script to accommodate a budget or production problems. The cat also loves to torture English. Occasionally, former Guns ‘N Roses guitarist, Slash (voiced by himself), joins them on their adventures, and has a crush on Tollie Mae. Other recurring characters include Stein, the studio boss from Mountain Studios, who is constantly being tricked by Evans to greenlight expensive projects; and Midget, a 3-foot-tall owner of a strip club that Evans frequents, and who looks a lot like Joe Pesci. I’ve also noticed that Ben Affleck and Matt Damon have made more than one appearance, both clutching their Oscars for Good Will Hunting and talking at the same time.
The animation is ugly, but so is the animation for my favorite cartoon series on TV, the fellow Comedy Central show “South Park.” The voice talent is very stereotyped, especially Tollie Mae. Slash as a character is a funny idea, but as a voice talent, it doesn’t work (the immature, zombie-like Ben/Matt characters were funnier.) The comedy doesn’t especially crack me up, because it mainly consists of name dropping and making fun of those celebrities.
I’m not even sure what made Evans decide to pursue “Kid Notorious,” other than to make a little money. He created it with the co-director of the documentary, Brett Morgan. His life doesn’t exactly translate well into a cartoon. I could possibly see it as a sitcom along the lines of FOX’s brilliant Jay Mohr comedy “Action,” but not the way this show turned out. Ironically, Comedy Central already airs reruns of an animated series filled with inside Hollywood jokes that work…“The Critic.” The show has made me laugh occasionally, but it is usually about as often as when I watch an episode of “The Simpsons” that packs itself with too many celebrity voice appearances and not enough funny writing. Still, I’m giving the show a shot, because I’m hoping for a glorious breakthrough. I loved the documentary, and I still think Evans has one of the coolest voices around. Maybe the Kid’s recent success in producing the hit romantic comedy How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days will revive his producing career full-time again. If so, then maybe he won’t have to make a quick buck on a show like this.
Buy this DVD at
DO NOT MISS THIS SHOW!
Try to catch this show every week...
If a better show is on, tape this one...
If nothing else is on, maybe this will be good...
If this show is on, change the channel immediately!