2 Stupid Dogs
Synopsis: Big Dog and Little Dog get into all sorts of comic mischief. Also features shorts from Super Secret Secret Squirrel.
There is a genius in the simplicity of 2 Stupid Dogs. It seems like such a simple concept: a Laurel and Hardy style comedy canine duo. It could easily be a bland cartoon, but, thankfully, it manages to take full advantage of it’s goofy setup.
The premise is fairly simple, following the nomadic adventures of Big Dog (a slow-talking behemoth of an animal) and Little Dog (a hyperactive pooch with more energy than brain cells). Their adventures are mostly about their curiosity of the world around them. They observe and experiment with their surroundings, but are usually only focused on element or miss the entire point of an action. Sometimes their only priority is getting the automatic doors at the supermarket to open and other times they just attend an event like a drive-in theater screening to see why everyone else is doing it.
What separates these two dogs from other stupid characters is that their stupidity is genuine ignorance. They’re not trying to be annoying, fumble through deeds or act as a danger to others. They’re just curious about the world and don’t quite grasp the everyday functions of human life. In that sense, there is a cuteness to their idiocy that makes them so likable in their obliviousness. After all, when they wander into a strip club and are more interested in a shoe than the scantily clad woman wearing it, it’s impossible not to get a chuckle out of such a scene. The childhood innocence among the adult humor skating over the heads of the main characters and the child audience is the perfect formula for a comedic cartoon.
On the other side of the coin, the Secret Squirrel segments make for a solid secret agent cartoon. It’s amazing how these segments not only manage to be embody the spirit of the original show it’s based on, but that it amps it up with more clever villains and gadgets. I also really dug the tone of the retro spy music and simple-shape character designs. It’s everything a remake of Secret Squirrel should be.
Anyway you slice it, 2 Stupid Dogs is a good old-fashioned cartoon that echos the elements of Hanna-Barbera’s golden years. Not only does this show have the courage to introduce new characters with a familiar setup, but it also has the creative strength to prove that even Hanna-Barbera’s classic characters can still be just as entertaining. It’s not the most breathtaking animation or the most unique stories, but its simple premise is perfected to be the best of its kind. For a cartoon about two stupid dogs, you won’t find anything better.