I didn’t think I’d love the Mr. Peabody and Sherman movie as much as I did, as it seemed to come out of nowhere and quickly became a hit. I was hoping a sequel would be announced soon (still am), but Dreamworks Animation instead chose to use their partnership with Netflix to bring us thirteen episodes of The Mr. Peabody and Sherman Show. Based on the classic 1960’s Jay Ward cartoon series, this modern take on it does a pretty good job bringing the humor and time traveling fun for a new generation to enjoy.
After the funky, dance music filled intro plays (which I found really catchy), viewers are introduced to hosts Mr. Peabody, a talking dog genius (voiced by Chris Parnell of Saturday Night Live and Archer), and Sherman, his adopted boy with a lot of heart (voiced by Max Charles who reprises his role from the movie). The series plays out like a variety show (complete with a studio audience who are badly drawn/animated, which I assume is for comedic effect), where Mr. Peabody and Sherman discuss what they have planned for the episode. Whether it’s the duo attempting a magic act or having a special musical guest star (rapper Wordsworth with DJ Prince Paul just to name a few), something unexpected usually interrupts them from completing the show, like their nosy neighbors crashing the show and such.
Right before the chaos happens at the studio, the two of them will present one of their time travelling adventures they choose from a random envelope. They use the WABAC machine (Way-Back, get it?) to visit historical figures such as Napoleon, Beethoven, Cleopatra, and a singing George Washington among others. Once their adventure gets started, it’s broken up into segments that’s shown between the adventure/crisis they’re having at the studio, sort of a show-within-a-show thing going on. The results are plenty of laughs and fun as the duo work their way through one mess after another, whether it’s helping Napoleon make a dessert to be named after him, or teaching Beethoven how to play the piano with his butt, there’s always something crazy going on.
I had a good time watching the episodes of the show, though I wish it played out more like a Doctor Who for kids series instead of a variety show. While there are plenty of laughs to be had here, most of the jokes and comedy come off feeling a bit forced, as though they’re trying too hard to be funny instead of being genuinely so. Still, the 22-some minute episodes look, move, and sound great in high definition, and I’ve read that more of them will soon be on the way, which will hopefully be even more fun.
If you’re looking for something fun to watch with your family on Netflix, you can’t go wrong with the comedic adventures of The Mr. Peabody and Sherman Show. While I felt that the series could’ve been a lot better had it been a flat out action/adventure series rather than a variety show, I’m sure kids and their families will still find plenty to laugh at and enjoy here as Mr. Peabody and Sherman go on one time traveling journey after another, if they can get their neighbors out of the studio first.