Saturday, October 09, 2004

Father of the Pride

I really don't know how to get one of these blogs going, so I will just start typing.

Father of the Pride (NBC, Tuesdays, from DreamWorks) has really caught some negative feedback from the animation community. Some of it justified, some of it not.
  • First of all, on a story level. This thing is mildly funny. Personally I think Seigfried and Roy are hilarious in this show. I would be much happier if the whole thing was centered around these two. Those lions are un-funny and boring. Snooooze. If only DreamWorks would wise up and concentrate on the two humans. These magicians must be really good sports (in real life) for them to let the writers do what they do with the animated characters.
  • Now for the animation. It has been getting better over the weeks. It started out kind of sketchy but has been getting increasingly better as the artists ease into a comfort zone. I can speak from experience and say that it takes time to get into the animation flow on a new project. I think they are easing in quite nicely. It still does not compare to feature work. But it is good for series work.
  • Lighting, shading, etc. They need some work in this area. I know it has short deadlines and not as much money as a feature. But come on. It is hum-drum. And the claim by DreamWorks execs "same quality as Shrek". Bull crap. Have you even watched this show?

Now, this is where I get bitter. DreamWorks is farming out this work to China. Actually, they are outsourcing it to a company that previously manufactured plastic Christmas trees. Don't think I am kidding either. This whole outsourcing to other countries is a real pisser. Those of you from other countries that are getting this work. I can't blame you for taking advantage of the situation. But my pissiness is for the studios (DREAMWORKS!!) sending the work overseas.

The budget on each of these shows is huge for a series!! They could easily do it here in the states if they would apply themselves. This is just plain pathetic for DreamWorks to do this.

Side note: I am all for these other countries doing animation. But when an American company outsources the work to hire workers at pennies on the dollar, it pisses me off. That is where the problem is. If DreamWorks wants to employ people from another country, then go to that country and set up shop there. Damn. I wish this government would stop making it so attractive for businesses to outsource.

So. In conclusion. I continue to watch the show because the Siegried and Roy characters still make me laugh. And I have a technical interest in how things develop from show to show. But the other half of me wants to hate this show and not watch because of the outsourcing. Argh. Come on DreamWorks!! (Whats the icon for spitting on the ground?!) Makes me wish I could see the budget sheet for this project. What a misuse of huge $$ on this series.


Anonymous said...

Hello again,

I watched FATHER OF THE PRIDE because one of my good friends designed the characters.

The things we do for our friends.
For the record, it was Episode 3, where Donkey visits the show. That part was amusing (I liked the Donkey's Understudy.) But then there was that subplot where a sweet little old lady sets up a B AND B and Siegfried 'corrupts' her. There is 'comedy' from a shot of her enormous braissiere on the floor after they have spent the night in bed.

I was disgusted, insulted, and will never watch this horrible show again. The smirking smarminess of it left a bad taste in my mouth.

Regarding outsourcing: Dreamworks was outsourcing work to Canada on their direct to videos when they could easily have done it here. Why is going to China worse? Rhythm and Hues has a studio in India. That's where all the CGI work will be in a few years; the Indians are VERY computer literate.
Some of my colleagues are training the Chinese and Indians to animate.



Gavin Stone said...

I personally like this show. I is not the greatest, but I watched it on a whim because I was pretty opposed to it from the get go. Im not a real big Sigfreid and Roy fan, they creep me out. I just figured the whole thing would be stupid. But it turned out to be funny. First seasons are never the best, but they grow up and become really good. And for an animated series it really is not all that bad.