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May 9, 2006

Filed under: movies»commentary»cult


Last night, prompted by some strange chain of links, I found myself watching MTV's short-lived adaptation of The Maxx, which you can find on YouTube here. I remember when my family first moved to Virginia and we were living in an apartment temporarily until we could find a real house, I sometimes stayed up late and watched the bizarre animations that MTV was playing (anyone else remember Liquid Television?). The Maxx is one of the more intriguing examples. Theoretically it's about a big, purple, Tick-like superhero named the Maxx--but since he's actually a big, purple, Tick-like homeless guy who involuntarily finds himself in a dream-world (or hallucinates the whole thing), there's not a lot of classic superhero-ing taking place. The Maxx is mixed up with a freelance social worker named Julie and a serial killer named Mr. Gone, all three of whom begin to increasingly blur the line between the dream and reality.

It's pretty strange, but oddly affecting. Whether or not it eventually makes any sense, I found it captivating due largely to the stellar voice acting. The animation is also surprisingly well-done, combining traditional cell art with mattes and limited CG, mixing art styles as it moves through different story arcs--a bit like Furi Kuri. Until it comes out on DVD, it looks like YouTube is the only place to watch it.

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