Toonsylvania

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Toonsylvania
Toonsylvania.jpg
Genre Cartoon series
Created by Bill Kopp
Chris Otsuki
Written by Bill Kopp
Mike Peters
Karl Teorge
Chris Otsuki
Vinny Montello
Steve Ochs
Martin Olson
Directed by Jeff DeGrandis
Starring David Warner
Wayne Knight
Brad Garrett
Voices of Nancy Cartwright
Matt Frewer
Jess Harnell
Jonathan Harris
Tom Kenny
Valery Pappas
Paul Rugg
Kath Soucie
Billy West
Theme music composer Julie Bernstein
Steven Bernstein
Paul Rugg
Composer(s) Michael Tavera
John Paul Given
Christopher Klatman
Thom Sharp
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 19
Production
Executive producer(s) Bill Kopp
Steven Spielberg
Producer(s) Jeff DeGrandis
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) DreamWorks Animation
Broadcast
Original channel Fox
Picture format 1:33.1
Audio format Dolby
Original run February 7, 1998 – December 21, 1998

Toonsylvania is an animated television series, which ran for 2 seasons in 1998 on Fox's Saturday morning cartoon block (usually placed in a block called "The No Yell Motel" that contained scary kids shows such as Goosebumps and Eerie, Indiana) in its first season, then was moved to Monday afternoons from September 14, 1998 until December 21, 1998, when it was cancelled. Reruns aired until 2000. It was produced in part by Steven Spielberg, following in the footsteps of his previous animated series, Tiny Toon Adventures and Animaniacs. Much like Animaniacs, the show had recurring cartoon series that appeared in each episode. Unlike Animaniacs, Toonsylvania didn't have a wide range of characters and almost every episode had the same cartoon segments.

Synopsis[edit]

A typical episode of Toonsylvania starts with a cartoon featuring the adventures of Dr. Vic Frankenstein (voiced by David Warner), his assistant Igor (voiced by Wayne Knight) who always sets out to prove that he's the real genius instead of Dr. Vic, and their dim-witted Frankenstein Monster known as Phil (voiced by Brad Garrett). Before the second cartoon, there is an animated vignette where Igor is on the couch with Phil and tries to fix the TV remote, but in every episode there's a new problem with it (a running gag akin to the couch gags seen on The Simpsons).

After that, there is a cartoon series called "Night of the Living Fred", about a family of zombies. This segment was created by Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Mike Peters. Sometimes, a parody of a B-list horror movie would air instead of a "Night of the Living Fred" cartoon.

After that is a short segment called "Igor's Science Minute", where Igor gives a science lesson (be it a musical piece or a spoken piece) that always ends in disaster.

The final segment is "Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals", where Phil the Frankenstein monster does something bad and Igor punishes him by reading a tale involving a bratty girl named Melissa Screetch (voiced by Nancy Cartwright of Simpsons fame) who doesn't heed the warnings of adults (usually given by her mother) and suffers the consequences one way or the other for it.

Changes During Its Second Season[edit]

In season 2, Bill Kopp and Jeff DeGrandis left the show and were replaced by former Animaniacs writer Paul Rugg. The series' format changed into more of a sitcom style, with Igor, Dr. Vic and Phil interacting with a variety of new characters, including a snooping next-door neighbor Seth Tuber (voiced by Jonathan Harris), who was based on Norman Bates from the movie Psycho. He interacted with his "immobile" mother by putting his hand over his mouth and talking into it. There was also a typical Transylvanian angry mob that was in fact a cheerful group of Beatles-esque hipsters. Most of these new characters were voiced by Paul Rugg, who also improvised many of their lines.

The only other backup segments to re-materialize in season two were the B-movie parodies (though some episodes of "Night of the Living Fred" aired) and Melissa Screetch in a new segment called "The Melissa Screetch Show."

Episodes[edit]

Season One[edit]

  • Darla Doily – Demon Doll/The Importance of Being Urnie/Igor's Science Minute: Clone or Be Cloned/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: The Boogeyman'll Get You Melissa (February 7, 1998): Igor buys Phil the monster a doll bent on murdering its owners; zombie kids Fred and Ashley Deadman track down their Uncle Urnie after he gets mixed up with a bag of cash during a bank robbery; Igor teaches viewers the process and consequences of cloning; after staying out too late, Melissa Screetch must come home or face The Boogeyman.
  • Blind Date of Frankenstein/Football and Other Body Parts/Igor's Science Minute: Helium and Hot Air Balloons/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Stop Making Ugly Faces (February 14, 1998): Igor builds a girlfriend for his arrogant master, Dr. Victor Frankenstein; Fred and Ashley must prove their worth during a school football game; Igor inflates Phil as part of his lesson about air displacement and how helium is the lightest element on the periodical table; Melissa Screetch's habit of making ugly faces curses her to a life of playing B-movie monsters.
  • Love Potion Number Nein/Attack of the Iguana People/Igor's Science Minute: The Big Bang/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Teeth for Two (February 21, 1998): Igor steals Dr. Vic's love potion and uses it as a perfume for Natalie Nightshade, a once-famous Hollywood actress who now haunts the castle, but the potion has a dangerous side effect that may cost Igor his life; a monster movie parody about reptilian creatures; Igor traps Phil inside a giant popcorn machine as part of his lesson on the big bang theory; Melissa Screetch incurs the wrath of the tooth fairy after refusing to give half her tooth fairy money to her brother Kyle.
  • Baby Human/Earth Vs. Everything/Igor's Science Minute: Blunder and Lightning/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Little Screetchin Riding Hood (February 28, 1998): Igor creates a humanoid baby with an insatiable appetite; another B-movie parody in which a monster known as "Everything" plots to rule the world; Igor teaches viewers about lightning, but can't stop getting struck by it; a musical take on Little Red Riding Hood starring Melissa Screetch torturing the Big Bad Wolf.
  • Built for Speed/Captain Beaumarchais' Fish Flakes/A Kiss Before Dying/Igor's Science Minute: Gravity/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Go Stand in the Corner, Young Lady (March 7, 1998): While on his way to a mad scientist's potluck, Dr. Vic learns that his rival booby-trapped his car to explode if it gets below 60 miles per hour; a short commercial parody for a breakfast cereal made of fish; Ashley sets up a kissing booth at the school carnival; Igor pushes Phil off the Eiffel Tower in this warped lesson on gravity; Melissa Screetch gets her teacher fired for making her stand in the corner as punishment for talking during class.
  • Spawn of Santa/Dead Hard/Igor's Science Minute: Peroidic Table of Elements/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Don't Swallow the Seeds, Silly (March 14, 1998): Dr. Vic switches Santa Claus' brain with the brain of a bank robber; Fred is sentenced to overnight detention and must escape by traveling through the school's air vent to save his date for the school dance from the school bully; Igor sings about the periodic table; Melissa swallows watermelon seeds, which grow inside her and turn her into a freak.
  • Doom With a View/Dead Dog Day Afternoon/Igor's Sciene Minute: Evolution and the Attorney/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Here There Be Monsters (March 28, 1998): While Dr. Vic is away, Igor and Phil use the castle as a bed and breakfast -- and The Grim Reaper becomes their first customer; Fred takes his dead dog to a dog show; Igor sings about the evolution of man; Melissa Screetch spins her own tale about Christopher Columbus and his exploration of America, which includes a hungry sea monster.
  • Love Hurts/One for Mall and Mall for One/Igor's Science Minute: The Brain/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Plain as the Nose on Your Face (April 4, 1998): Igor, Dr. Vic, and Phil appear on a Dating Game-style game show, where Dr. Vic keeps getting injured during the physical challenges; The Deadmans head to the mall for a family photo; Igor literally picks Phil's brain during a song about the organ; Melissa comes down with a serious case of Pinocchio nose when she won't stop lying and incurs the wrath of God.
  • Phil Feel Smart/Voodoo Vacation/Igor's Science Minute: The Universe/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Melissa, Don't Spoil Your Appetite (April 25, 1998): Phil ingests all the chemicals in the lab to wash out the taste of the five-alarm chili Igor made, and suddenly becomes the smartest person in the world, which Igor and Dr. Vic want to exploit for their own benefits; The Deadmans vacation in Hawaii, where they're mistaken for an ancient god; Igor sings about the universe; Melissa's candy bingeing causes her to waste away from not eating real food.
  • WereGranny/The Lobster of Party Beach/Igor's Science Minute: Luck Is Not a Factor/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: The Screetchy Little Mermaid (May 2, 1998): Dr. Vic's grandmother comes to visit, and Igor thinks Phil accidentally spiking her tea with wolfsbane has turned her into a werewolf; another B-movie parody, this time, about a lobster monster ruining a teen beach party; Igor teaches viewers about the scientific reasonings behind luck; Melissa Screetch is an obnoxious mermaid bent on revenge against the prince who rejected her.
  • A Family Plot/A Zombie is Born/Igor's Science Minute: Earthquake Boogie/Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals: Melissa and The Three Bears(May 16, 1998): Igor resurrects Dr. Vic's ex-wife and her family; Fred and Ashley sign up for the school talent show; Igor sings an Elvis-inspired song about earthquakes; Melissa Screetch harasses the Three Bears.
  • Phil's Brain/Jurassic Putt/Igor's Science Minute: Bites and Stings/You Keep Bouncing Like That, You're Gonna Hurt Yourself (September 14, 1998): Igor tries to get Phil's brain to help him out with taking out the trash -- but Phil's brain is lonely and wants a bride; Fred goes on a mini-golf date with a Goth girl; Igor sings about the effects of bites and stings to the tune of "My Favorite Things" from The Sound of Music; Melissa Screetch's excessive couch bouncing sends her into space.
  • The Inferior Decorator/Bang!/Parasites/Melissa Screetch, Earth Ambassador (September 21, 1998): Dr. Vic forces a tired Igor into remodeling his bedroom and Igor replaces Phil's brain with the brain of an interior decorator; the Deadmans meet their new human neighbors at a barbecue; Igor sings about how having a parasite for a pet is cheaper than a real animal; a field trip to NASA leads to an alien invasion thanks to Melissa Screetch's meddling.

Season Two[edit]

  • Something Weenie This Way Comes/Ideadical Cousins/Melisserella (October 26, 1998): After discovering that they're broke, Dr. Vic and Igor take jobs at Weenie on a Twig while Phil is mistaken for a video game at the local arcade; Fred and Ashley Deadman play with their French cousin who wants to get rid of Ashley and live her life; Melissa Screetch is a lazy, nasty Cinderella in this boogie-woogie take on the classic tale.
  • Igor's Replacement / The Deadman Bunch (November 9, 1998): Igor gets a new job with a different mad scientist after Dr. Vic refuses to give into his demands; a Brady Bunch parody starring the Deadman family
  • My Fair Monster / The Nosey Face / Shelf Of Brains (November 16, 1998): In this parody of My Fair Lady, Igor trains Phil to be the stand-out of the Westminister Monster show after Dr. Vic refuses to let him enter; the angry villagers recite a poem about a stranger with a strange nose; Phil sings about the many brains he has in the lab and in his head.
  • The Doomed Odyssey/Attack of the Fifty Footed Woman/Becki with an I (November 23, 1998): A movie crew invades the castle and Igor, Dr. Vic, and Phil fight back; a B-movie parody where a sleepy Western town is attacked by an overgrown woman with 50 feet; Becki (the Weenie on a Twig supervisor from "Something Weenie This Way Comes") performs a piece on why she hates being on Toonsylvania.
  • The Longest Day/Take Us to Your Liter/Escape from Wet Nurse Island (December 7, 1998): Dr. Vic, Igor, and Phil endure a boring visit to the DMV after Dr. Vic gets a misprinted license plate; a B-movie parody in which aliens want America to switch over to the metric system; Melissa Screetch creates her own TV show where her babysitter is sent to an Alcatraz-style prison island.
  • For Your Info-Mation/In Or Out/Melissa Makes A Wish/Madame Olga's Lament (December 21, 1998): Dr. Vic sells his fountain of youth potion on an infomercial; the Deadman kids are expelled for being dead; Melissa wishes for a Black Ops helicopter; Dr. Vic's maid Madame Olga sings about her secrets and dreams.
  • Some Weird In Time/Vittles With Vic/Parents Opposed to Television Inappropriateness/Toonsylvania Presents: Phil and Igor in "Don't Axe, Don't Tell"/News from Around the World/A Man of No Importance/Swamp Thingy (unaired): Igor, Dr. Vic, and Phil go time-traveling; Dr. Vic hosts his own cooking segment; a network censor with P.O.T.T.I (Parents Opposed to Television Inappropriateness) speaks out against the show's violent content; an Igor/Phil segment gets toned down by the censor from the previous segment; a newsreel parody shows how the Deadman family changed history; an unknown extra points out the scenes he appears in on the show; a B-movie parody about a swamp monster who wants to go on vacation.
  • Cyranot/Igor III/Running of the Bullies/Troop 666 (unaired): Phil falls in love with a female monster, but Doc ends up stealing her; a parody of Shakespeare's Richard III has Igor as the protagonist; the Deadman kids fight back against their bullies; Melissa Screetch's wilderness group gets lost in the woods.

Music[edit]

The music for the series was written by Michael Tavera, Keith Baxter, Christopher Neal Nelson, John Paul Given, Christopher Klatman and Thom Sharp. The main title song was written by Steve Bernstein and Julie Bernstein with lyrics by Paul Rugg.

Cast[edit]

  • David Warner - Dr. Vic Frankenstein
  • Wayne Knight - Igor, Igor's reflection
  • Brad Garrett - Phil, Bunny Wunny (on "Melissa Screetch: Earth Ambassador"), various
  • Nancy Cartwright - Melissa Screetch ("Melissa Sreetch's Morbid Morals" and "The Melissa Screetch Show" segments)
  • Matt Frewer - Dedgar Deadman (season one)
  • Jess Harnell - Dedgar Deadman (season two), Wink Dracula (on "Love Hurts"), Johnny Vermin (on "A Kiss Before Dying"), Igor's singing voice (on "Igor's Science Minute: The Periodic Table"), various
  • Jonathan Harris - Seth Tuber (season two)
  • Tom Kenny - Ace Deuce, various
  • Valery Pappas - Stiffany Deadman ("Night of the Living Fred" segments), Melissa Screetch's Mother ("Melissa Sreetch's Morbid Morals" segments), various
  • Paul Rugg - Seth Tuber's Mom (season two)
  • Kath Soucie - Ashley Deadman ("Night of the Living Fred" segments), Kyle Screetch ("Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals")
  • Billy West - Fred Deadman ("Night of the Living Fred" segments), Newark (from the "B-movie" parodies), Toy Store Clerk/Mall Clerk (on "Darla Doiley: Demon Doll" and "Spawn of Santa"), Dr. Earl Schwartzberg ("Built For Speed"), various

Additional Voices[edit]

  • Charlie Adler - Customer (on "Darla Doiley: Demon Doll"), Dr. Vic's grandmother (on "WereGranny"), various
  • Jocelyn Blue - Mama Bear, Gertrude (on "Family Plot")
  • Corey Burton - Death (on the episode "Doom With a View"), Debbie the bank robber (on the episode "Spawn of Santa")
  • Cam Clarke - Various
  • Jim Cummings - Army General ("B-Movie" segments), Santa (on "Spawn of Santa"), Coach (on "Night of the Living Fred"), various
  • Sandy Fox - Darla Doily, Baby Bear, Various
  • Bill Kopp - Various
  • April Winchell: Liz (on "Love Hurts")

Crew[edit]

  • Bill Kopp - Executive Producer, Writer , Creator ("B-Movie"), Voice Director
  • Jeff DeGrandis - Producer, Director
  • Steven Spielberg - Executive Producer
  • Keith Baxter - Writer ("The Inferior Decorator"; also credited for lyrics for musical episodes of "Igor's Science Minute" and co-credited with Christopher Neil Nelson for music in "Igor's Science Minute")
  • Lee Mendelson - Creative Consultant ("Night of the Living Fred")
  • Vinny Montello - Writer (all episodes co-written with Steve Ochs unless otherwise noted):
    • Night of the Living Fred: "The Importance of Being Urnie"
    • "Attack of the Iguana People"
    • "Built for Speed" [teleplay; story is credited to Frank Santopadre]
    • "Doom with a View"
    • "Love Hurts" [with additional writing credits to Bill Kopp]
    • "Night of the Living Fred: Mall for One and One for Mall" [with additional writing credit to Mike Peters]
    • "Night of the Living Fred: Dead Hard" [with additional writing credit to Bill Kopp]
    • "WereGranny"
  • Steve Ochs - Writer (all episodes co-written with Vinny Montello unless otherwise noted):
    • Night of the Living Fred: "The Importance of Being Urnie"
    • "Attack of the Iguana People"
    • "Built for Speed" [teleplay; story is credited to Frank Santopadre]
    • "Doom with a View"
    • "Love Hurts" [with additional writing credit to Bill Kopp]
    • "Night of the Living Fred: Mall for One and One for Mall" [with additional writing credit to Mike Peters]
    • "Night of the Living Fred: Dead Hard" [with additional writing credit to Bill Kopp]
    • "WereGranny"
  • Martin Olson - Writer ("Spawn of Santa," "Phil Feel Smart," "Family Plot," "Night of the Living Fred: A Zombie is Born" [co-written by Mike Peters], "Phil's Brain," "Night of the Living Fred: Jurassic Putt," and "Night of the Living Fred: Bang!")
  • Chris Otsuki - Creator ("Melissa Screetch"), Writer ("Igor's Science Minute" and "Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals")
  • Mike Peters - Creator ("Night of the Living Fred"), Writer (Night of the Living Fred: "Football and Other Body Parts," "A Kiss Before Dying" [co-written with Tracy Peters], "A Zombie is Born" [co-written with Martin Olson], and "Mall for One and One For Mall [co-written by Vinny Montello and Steve Ochs])
  • Karl Teorge - Writer ("Night of the Living Fred: Football and Other Body Parts," co-written with Mike Peters)

Availability[edit]

On August 31, 1999, a VHS video of Toonsylvania was released, which contained selected episodes and was released with the season two opening (though all of the episodes are from season one). The episodes seen are "Darla Doiley, Demon Doll," "Voodoo Vacation," "Baby Human," "Dead Dog Day Afternoon," "Igor's Science Minute (Clone or Be Cloned, The Brain, Earthquake Boogie, and Gravity and the Eiffel Tower)," "Melissa Screetch's Morbid Morals (The Boogeyman, Stop Making Ugly Faces, Here There be Monsters, and Melissa Screetch: Earth Ambassador)," "Phil's Brain," "Football...and other Body Parts," "Bang!," and "WereGranny". The video is currently out of print and DreamWorks Animation, the current rights holder, has yet to announce any plans to put the series on DVD.

As of 2014, the entire series can be found on Netflix's streaming program in Mexico and Brazil, with English, Spanish, and Brazilian Portuguese audio, with "Phil's Brain" and "The Inferior Decorator" as season one episodes and two episodes that didn't air when shown on FOX: "Some Weird in Time" and "Cyranot".

Video Game[edit]

A Toonsylvania video game was released by UbiSoft for the Game Boy Color in 2000.

Merchandise[edit]

Toonsylvania action figures and playsets were developed by Pangea Corporation and released by Toy Island and Burger King distributed toys based on Toonsylvania in their kids' meals for a short period of time.

External links[edit]