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‘Animaniacs’ Perfectly Blends Hilarity And Nostalgia – Review

Warner Siblings Yakko, Wakko and Dot are back to stir up some laughs in Hulu’s revival of the Animaniacs

I don’t know about you, but when it was announced that we would be getting a new dose of the Animaniacs, I was elated. As one of my favourite animated shows growing up, I was excited to see just what this new iteration had in store and I can tell you that I wasn’t disappointed. Much like the original series, Yakko, Wakko and Dot are up to many shenanigans–and if you’ve seen the original version of the series, you know that is mostly what the show is all about. The only difference now is that the references are relevant to today’s experience, society and pop culture.

Animaniacs - Hulu
Yakko, Dot and Wakko in Animaniacs (Courtesy of Hulu)

While bringing back something that was so beloved and fitting it into today’s pop culture landscape doesn’t always play out well, there are always exceptions. One of these exceptions is certainly Animaniacs. I re-watched some of the original series to see how it compared to the revival and was glad to find that I laughed just as much watching past episodes as I did watching the current episodes. The same kind of humour found within the 90s series can be found in the new Animaniacs. It was both brilliant and nostalgic.

Even the iconic introduction song hits the right marks and while the episodes that I’ve seen have yet to include some of the newer clan of supporting characters, the arrival of Pinky and Brain into the mix was great. While Pinky and Brain were the only characters from the past (other than Yakko, Wakko and Dot) to be confirmed in the revival, it still makes me wonder if we will see any of the other characters from the series (i.e. Buttons & Mindy and Slappy the Squirrel amongst others) in future episodes or future seasons. It would serve as a great homage to some very timeless characters.

In addition, it is terrific to have the original voice actors back in their respective roles; Tress Macneille as Dot, Jess Harnell as Wakko, Rob Paulsen as Yakko and Pinky, and Maurice LaMarche as Brain. Each of them are pitch-perfect in the roles they originally brought to life, adding an extra touch of both sentimentality and enjoyment to the series. Revivals can be tough, but a key to success is honouring the original and having the original cast members of Animaniacs helps ease the transition for long time fans.

Animaniacs works well in building upon its existing platform and while the revival will most certainly draw in original fans, it will also succeed in drawing in new viewers with its comical commentary and timeliness. If you’re looking for a blast from the past that will have you laughing out loud and put a smile on your face, be sure to check out Animaniacs when it premieres on Hulu this week.

Animaniacs premieres on Hulu on November 20.

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