Bedno.com Andrew  Do  See
"Adult Swim" is the leading edge of absurdist art.
Many smart critics have said.
I was raised on art appreciation. I've been to some of the great galleries of Europe, and relish Chicago's museums and achievements in urban art. I've seen some of the great modern dance and performance companies of our time, listened to the likes of Cage/Copland/Glass/Residents, and followed philosophy of creativity musings of Picasso/Warhol/Pollock/etc.

It is from said vantage that I must champion the point that this not so humble anymore basic cable channel's ongoing experiment is achieving never before accomplished heights in the craft of absurdist art. And as cable TV (rather than an event at the MCA), the significance of TOON's accomplishments may go under recognized. Given its penetration to something near a half-million viewers per nightly per show, the Adult Swim block of shows may be doing more to sophisticate the conceptual aesthetic pallet of young Americans than an infinite number of field trips.

Adult Swim has been blowing me away for more than a decade with Space Ghost, which I've described as free form thought jazz put to cartoon, through Aqua Teens (which TV guide lists as "fast food items solve crimes") and the brilliance of Sealab 2021, through the raw punk of 12oz Mouse and Squidbillies, to the recent haute parodies of Saul Molemen and Garth Merengue, to the absolutely jaw-dropping newest Superjail and Xavier, which are so intense that I sometimes single frame step them and use CC.

I mention this kudo now because last night, as their annual April Fools day gag, instead of their usual comedy block, they played in it's entirety "The Room", a bafflingly mediocre dry freshman melodrama. It was one of the boldest examples I've ever seen of the highest absurdist performance art exercise of challenging breaking point of audience endurance. Go read more about this atrocious film.

 OFFSITE 
2009.04.01