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Rocko's Modern Life: Season One

Score: 80%
Rating: Not Rated
Publisher: Shout! Factory
Region: 1
Media: DVD/2
Running Time: 5 Hrs.
Genre: Animated/Family/TV Series
Audio: English
Subtitles: English

Man, Rocko's Modern Life: Season One really brings back some memories. While the show wasn't in the first round of Nicktoons, it wasn't long after that original trio of Doug, Rugrats and The Ren & Stimpy Show.

This particular series followed a young wallaby, Rocko, who has been thrust into the real world and faces many of the issues most modern people have to face. Rocko ends up dealing with everything from crazy neighbors, the DMV, being fired and even a brand new credit card.

Rocko's best friend is Heffer, a cow raised by wolves, and he ends up being the butt of many fat jokes in the series. The large character ends up getting Rocko in more trouble than most friends can put up with. While Heffer is a major character of the series, between the pair trying to get into a gym, to a stressful flight and even a round trip to Heck, there are quite a few times when both viewers and Rocko alike have to wonder why the wallaby hangs around with the oaf. Well, it's probably because he is just a great source of comedy in the series. All of those Heffer-centric episodes have stuck with me over the years and re-watching them recently only reminded me just how much staying power the show has had with me, overall.

Rocko's life also consists of his neighbors, two frogs, Mr. and Mrs. Bighead. Mr. Bighead works for the local mega-company, Conglom-O, while his wife stays at home and feels a bit unwanted by her husband in more than one episode. In fact, these two characters are the closest things the series has to regular antagonists. It's not like they necessarily try and make Rocko's life hard, but they are often the cause of a lot of stress in his life.

Other favorite episodes include one where Rocko and Heffer head to the mall to replace Spunky's water bowl. Spunky would be Rocko's black and white dog, and is quite a handful. This is the episode that focuses on the aforementioned credit card, and teaches both Rocko and viewers the problems that can come with the "charge now, pay later" mentality.

In "Dirty Dog," Spunky has to get a bath. While Rocko fights the dog, we zoom onto Spunky's skin to see a sit-com like scenario featuring two parasites, Bloating and Squirmy. This Odd Couple pair make a few more appearances in the series, but they aren't nearly as regular as the other characters mentioned already.

There is a lot of goodness packed into Rocko's Modern Life: Season One, and while the series is a little dated, it generally holds up well. Old fans of the show should simply pick up this DVD, because it's as good as you remember. As for newer viewers, it is a good, kid-friendly show that has a bit of humor that the parents should enjoy as well. It was definitely one of those shows that I appreciate more now that I am older and understand some of the less obvious humor found throughout.

My only real complaint is that the DVD set doesn't come with any kind of special features. I think some kind of retrospective would have been a great addition to Rocko's Modern Life: Season One.

-J.R. Nip, GameVortex Communications
AKA Chris Meyer

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