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November 24, 2011

Never watch 80's cartoons in your 30's.

I watch a lot of cartoons. My son is three and a half. He loves crap like Thomas the Tank Engine, Max & Ruby and Yo Gabba Gabba. And let me say this... D.J. Lance Rock, your day will come.

I grew up watching a lot of cartoons, great ones like Thundarr the Barbarian, He-Man and G.I. Joe. So I was excited to see that one of your old G.I. Joe episodes was on while scrolling through shows the other day. Is three and a half too young for laser battles and terrorist undertones? Maybe. But I am too old for another freakin' half hour of watching Thomas learn what it means to be a really useful engine. Do you know what's really useful? Interstates and high-speed railways. Steam engines rank right up there with electric typewriters.

After explaining that this show would not involve a train but would involve weapons, my son was on-board. I flipped it on G.I. Joe to find that we were about to watch Part 2 of the Pyramid of Darkness Miniseries.

I apologize for either not having seen or simply forgetting Part 1, but I can't imagine it would have helped. I now wish I'd never seen the listing, wish I would have just watched another 30 minutes of Max acting like a brat and Ruby acting like a nag.

Let's start with the Shipwreck/Snake-Eyes plotline. You put them undercover? In an underwater Cobra hideout? Wearing their normal outfits? With pets? Snake-Eyes I can sort of see. The guy is a mute ninja. Sneaking around should usually work out for him. But Shipwreck looks like he just left the stage after singing "YMCA." One set of leather chaps and he would make the Parents Television Council's watch-list. Do either of these guys have friends? Maybe a nice neighbor down the hall? They both infiltrate a terrorist network to save the world... with a parrot and a dog in tow. Are you telling me that Ms. Smith with the fruitcakes couldn't have thrown a few crackers in a cage and some food in a bowl?

And then we cut back to Cobra Commander. Whose idea was it to make the world's most dangerous man into the angry gay English teacher from freshman year of high school? I am supposed to believe this faceless, spineless guy rose through the ranks and now strikes fear into the hearts of deadly mercenaries. He would have been better cast as Mr. Furley's eccentric cousin on a Three's Company one-off.

Then we find Destro and Baroness. Cobra Commander hit George Jetson's magic button to pull up a live shot of the Baroness mouth humping Destro's dome. Why was some guy filming that? We see the shot, so I must assume a Cobra cameraman follows Destro around 24/7 for spur of the moment video chats. Watching Baroness kiss that dude made me think of someone licking the bottom half of a lamp.

Have I mentioned the space station? As I understood it, you put Cobra's biker gang, the Dreadnaughts, in charge of Space Station Delta. They captured and enslaved some Joes, and now spend most of their time running motorcycles in a Zero G setting. Steering? Traction? Not important when faced with the desire to watch a Harley do 75 upside down through a storage bay. And what in the hell are those other things? I hope Part 1 somehow explained how Cobra created a species of sentient yetis who carry whips and transform back into mogwai at the sound of a dog whistle.

By the way, my son loved the whole episode. He wanted a yeti-mogwai doll. I had to set my DVR to record the last three parts. But that's not why I'm so pissed. I'm pissed because you guys didn't go ahead and burn the originals tapes back in the 80's. I never should have watched Part 2 or any other episode through my adult eyes. What else sucks? Airwolf? The A-Team? If you even mention Transformers right now so help me God I will find you.