So, yeah, as y'all know, I'm a big fan of Davey & Goliath, and in a non-ironic sense and all. (In fact, I think it'll be on here in 20 minutes!) I'm also a Mr. Show fan. It's not that often that the two overlap, but when they do, it's a wonderful thing.
The newest show on Adult Swim is Moral Orel, a parody of Davey & Goliath created by Dino Stamatopoulos, and written/directed by Dino, Jay Johnston and Scott Adsit, all from Mr. Show, and made by Shadow Machine Films, who also do Robot Chicken on AS.
When I saw the ads for it, I knew I had to tune in, just because, well, I couldn't figure out what this show that looked like Davey & Goliath was -- when they announced the title, I got excited, as the only thing I knew about Moral Orel was that some of the Mr. Show guys were involved (it seems that some of the AS stuff has become the Mr. Show clearing house -- not only have they had Futurama, which has Bob's brother Bill as one of the main writing staff, but they've got Tom Goes To The Mayor) and the title.
The first episode was the Christmas special -- and I was floored. (A torrent is here -- right now it claims to be being seeded.) It wasn't a straight Davey parody -- there wasn't a talking dog, say -- but it had the look ad feel down, instead using the Davey framework to explore comedy, both in general and in the situation.
The show is very well done, mixing the standard Davey shots with faux-documentary stuff with the grittier, realer aspects of the series. On Christmas Eve, at the sermon, Orel's pastor tells about the Second Coming -- "He might be on Earth right now, but I'm sorry to say, this time, he won't be so nice." Due to the holiday, Orel can't sleep, and gets up to check on his parents in their bedroom. He doesn't go in, and merely watches from the door (this is where it changes to faux-documentary) as they fight over Orel's brother, Shapey, not actually being Orel's father's. Instead of being shocked, Orel's happy, unflappable nature combined with his innate desire to do and be good and holy leads him to make a conclusion -- since Shapey's not nice and not his father's, he MUST be the Second Coming!
The show progresses from there, with a lot of great riffs on the situations, although my favorite thing in the episode is the last scene -- they don't go for the easy joke. It's got to be seen -- it's a really mature, classic ending that made me change my mind about Adult Swim having gone downhill. (I don't like a lot of the new series -- Moral Orel and Stroker & Hoop aside, a lot of them basically seem to be of the sort where the implicit message is "Man, you suckers will eat up any shit we get high and think of" -- well, explicit in 12 Oz. Mouse, where the creator, a co-creator of Aqua Teen Hunger Force actually said that he had the idea to come up with a show while he was drunk and did it that way intentionally... )
The first actual episode (torrent here, again, it claims it's being seeded) wasn't quite as good as the Christmas special -- a bit more Jokey, and a bit sillier/less realistic. Part of the fun of the first episode was how it completely melded together the real and the parodic; this one's basically straight satire -- and the satire IS a bit ham-handed, but it's still pretty funny the way it's executed. Just because they go for a bit of an obvious and easy target doesn't mean they don't hit it dead on with wit. Still, though, they're definitely both watching, and I'm really excited for more episodes. It's Adult Swim going back to experimental and adult comedy, rather than the easy, drug-induced haze they've kind of devolved into with the new series.
Man, I was all ready to say "Oh, and it's time to end this post, because Davey & Goliath is on! But now it's Bibleman. Stupid TBN changing their schedule.