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Category:    Home > Reviews > Animation > Comedy > Satire > TV > Superjail! – Season One (2007 – 2008/Warner/Adult Swim DVD)

Superjail! – Season One (2007 – 2008/Warner/Adult Swim DVD)


Picture: B     Sound: B-     Extras: C+     Episodes: B



Superjail! is a new Adult Swim series that is highly reminiscent of past MTV animated classics like that of Beavis and Butthead, The Maxx or even The Head.  It uses purposely crude animation along with violence and odd plots to propel each self contained story forward.  Looking at the cover art of the Season One DVD alone can give anyone a taste of what the series has to offer.  Superjail! is refreshingly creative and innovative as it does not require a high budget or fancy computers to make brilliant works of art.


The series is full of wonderment and imagination as the animation manages to satanically capture elements of The Wizard of Oz and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory at the same time as infusing its own creative oddities.  Each of Season One’s 10 episodes begins with an original opening that has the same prisoner on the ‘outside’ getting into some sort of trouble.  The prisoner is quickly captured by Jail-bot (the prisons protective robot) and dragged back to Superjail as the series catchy theme song kicks off.


The series uses gratuitous amounts of violence as well as copious amounts of sexual innuendos throughout each episode; definitely not a show for the kids.  The episodes mainly center on the daily happenings of Superjail as the Warden (an oblivious Willy Wonka type character) uses the facility as his personal playground.  The animation has a psychedelic edge, with insanely elaborate animated sequences.  Many criticize the show’s violence and dismiss the series as idiotic, but I feel the violence is brilliantly blended into the series’ quick transitions and fast paced plot.  The main characters (Jared, Alice, Jail-bot and Warden) are both memorable and likeable on some sick level as they concurrently control and create chaos institution wide.  The episodes seemingly borrow elements from classic television and film alike as we get covert tastes of 2001: A Space Odyssey and Texas Chainsaw Massacre amongst many others.  In the end, the series is wonderfully invigorating as it revitalizes the Adult Swim lineup that has gotten all too comfortable with its ‘solid’ lineup.  I never quite know when to catch a new episode of classics like Aqua Teen or Venture Bros, but if Adult Swim manages to keep pumping out future classics like Superjail! I will be happy.


The technical features of this DVD are adequate, but not outstanding.  The picture is presented in a simple standard definition that highlights the crude animation nicely as the image is crisp, clean and very bright.  The color spectrum is wide as the primary colors pop from scene to scene with reds, greens and blues light up the screen.  The sound is a ok in its Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo, but nothing fantastic as it comes solely from the from and does little with the full speaker range.


The extras include 55minutes of bonuses; featuring the original pilot episode “Bunny Love,” ‘Comin' Home’ music video by Cheeseburger and Animatics. The Pilot Episode was a big bonus as it falls right in line with the series; which is a lot since many series are overhauled after the original pilot episodes and resemble the series you know very little.  The music video is also a plus as it is hilariously funny and lets you once again partake in a great song.  The animatics are slightly boring as they briefly showcase the creative process, but nice to see the effort was there to include them.


Don’t let anyone tell you that Superjail! is like anything currently in the Adult Swim series lineup, because it stands out on its own as a pillar of creative power and odd innovation unlike any other. 



-   Michael P. Dougherty II


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