We’re going to analyze Cow and Chicken a famous TV show that was unique for its time. Other than having crazy animation and a unique story, Cow and Chicken had some interesting characters. One of the most interesting ones in my opinion was a side character Red Guy. Overall the show performed really well for its 3-year run time. Cow and Chicken will remain one of those shows that you’d like to see a re-run from time to time, but you know it’s impossible. In this ever-changing world full of rights where only one side can win, we’ll probably never see a re-run. I hope that we who gather old DVDs and VHSs will have to show them to future generations.
Analysis and breakdown of Cow and Chicken show [1997-1999]
This is one of the first Cartoon Network original shows after Johnny Bravo and Dexter’s Laboratory, but this one came with a bang. First of all, characters like Mom and Dad don’t have the upper part of the body, which is pretty weird. Secondly, the show starts with the lyrics: “Momma had a chicken, Momma had a cow, Dad was proud, he didn’t care how.” After that, there’s the unforgettable instrumental. We have the Red Guy who was pretty controversial in the ’90s, especially since many cults and religions believed that in 1999 the world was about to end. I know even some parents that didn’t let their kids watch it since the show features content similar to Ren and Stimpy. For example, this was the case when the Red Guy was getting beaten or whenever Boneless Chicken appeared. Last but not least, wieners were absolutely everywhere. I don’t want to get too deep into this, but you could really get away with many things in a cartoon at that age.
The episode that was one of the best, in my opinion, is “The Legend of the Saillcat.” It was more like a musical as Cow, Chicken, Flem, and Earl were camping, and Flem’s dad told them a story about Sailcat. Flem’s dad sang a song about how Sailcat was a cat that couldn’t be killed but was flattened by a truck (roadkill). At the end of the episode, it’s funny how Flem’s dad is sleeping on a book titled “Roadkill Recipes.” In most of the other episodes, Cow is presented as a “little” sister who’s protecting her older brother; thus the name Cow and Chicken, you see it, don’t you? Another episode that, like The Simpsons, predicted the future was “Squirt The Daisies.” Chicken finds himself trying out a new game with special goggles (VR) and ends up physically in the game (this part isn’t still real). Chicken, in the end, gets away from killer Daisies as Cow helps him by joining the game, and the Red Guy is left without quarters, so he loses.
Memorable characters from Cow and Chicken
Good Guys: Cow, Chicken, Mom, Dad, Flem, Sailcat, Earl, Grandma, Aunty, Uncle Snail, Boneless Chicken, Professor Longhorn Steer, Mr. Monster
Bad Guys: Cerberus, Fluffy the Anaconda, Grizzly Beaver, The Milkman, Headhunters, Photocopy, Dick, Butch, The Bully from Scarsdale
Does Cow and Chicken need a reboot, a sequel, or none?
We’d like to see a sequel, but since the Cow and Chicken show was hardly even made in the late ’90s, we’ll have to go with none. If you were lucky enough to watch two episodes, “Buffalo Gals” and “Cow and Chicken Reclining,” you’d know why. Both episodes had stereotypical jokes such as calling certain minorities “buffalo girls” or “a bit chubby”. In the end, both episodes were taken off the air. You can still find them online, but trust me, it’s something that a kid or even a teenager couldn’t have noticed and connected the dots. Nowadays, in an era where everything is prohibited, and it’s hard to make a good comedy without someone being offended by it, Cow and Chicken would be an impossible show. There are shows like Archer, South Park, The Simpsons, Family Guy, American Dad, etc., but they’ve become parodies of themselves as it’s just a cash grab, and the shows are too PC. This is what’s killing the movies, gaming, and other media as well.
Cartoon Network probably won’t even think about making or remaking shows like this, especially Cow and Chicken. Maybe it’d be a good idea to insert the Red Guy as a star in a show, but kids nowadays wouldn’t recognize the reference. For us old folks, it’d be a nice throwback but nothing other than that. There’s been a story that instead of the final episode “The Ballad of Cow and Chicken,” there was an alternative ending that you could’ve found on the dark web, and it was horrific. During this alternative ending, according to people who saw it, Cow and Chicken end up in Hell being tortured by nobody else than the Red Guy. I didn’t like how season four ended with the “Ballad of Cow and Chicken,” but I think that the creators also didn’t like their show being canceled; that’s why they just ended it with a song.
Image Credits: Cartoon Network Studios