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‘Disenchanted’ shows promise as the next ‘Futurama’ in the back half of its first season

From Matt Groening, the creator of “The Simpsons” and “Futurama,” comes his next big hit from Netflix, “Disenchantment.” Taking place in the fantasy kingdom of Dreamland, the series follows irresponsible princess Bean, along with her friends, Elfo the Elf and Luci, a literal demon on her shoulder.. Along the first season, Bean usually runs away from her responsibilities as a princess and tries to avoid the marriage that will cement her to a life in the castle. While the first few episodes of the season suffer because of this marriage plot, once that wraps up, the series starts to find its footing and has its best episodes as Bean and her group of friends cause problems throughout the kingdom. What sold me on “Disenchantment” was its similarity to “Futurama,” as it feels like the medieval version of the show with many visual gags and continuity through the episodes.

The serialization of “Disenchanted” also plays to its strengths as characters and storylines previously referenced are carry over through the season, with the bigger storylines being the marriage of Bean and the quest to try to bring her mother back from stone. But while the story may carry over, it is not that strong as of yet, with some of the episodes being common comedy situations that people have seen in animated shows or sitcoms before it. But what really elevates the show is its voice cast, as Abbi Johnson, Eric Andre, and Nat Faxon kill it as the trio that is Bean, Luci and Elfo. My favorite character in the series has to be Luci as I am a roaring Eric Andre fan, and he feels like the Bender of “Disenchanted.” Abbi Johnson is excellent too, making Bean humorous, but also sympathetic and relatable in the process. The series also has a variety of characters that were used in minuscule moments, but I wish that they had used more frequently as they proved to be pretty funny in the moments they appeared in.

While “Disenchanted” may have had half a great season, I feel that the show will have great potential to grow in the future if they were able to explore some of the other locations that make up the world of Dreamland. For example, one episode took place in another kingdom, and learning about their absurd customs was hilarious. Another focused on going to war to capture elves, and watching the elves fend off the attackers with candy was enjoyable as well. If “Disenchanted” was able to focus on its world-building and venture out of the comfort of Dreamland, it would make for a great yet humorous time. While it may have faltered during its first season, the season finale proves to be a major shift in status quo for the second season, whenever it comes. I feel that given time “Disenchanted” will start to measure up with its predecessors, and may even prove to be better.

Photos by Netflix