Mar 27, 2008

Toxic Crusaders: The Movie

Toxic Crusaders
is the undeniably horrific mess that is the effect of taking a franchise, known for it's sex and voracious gore, and trimming it until suitable for kids. Note: This doesn't mean it isn't entertaining. The first three episodes of the show were put together to form this "movie."

Toxic Crusaders isn't the only example of an extreme R-rated film being transferred to cartoon. Rambo was also done, and just like this, was heavily altered. The story finds the Toxic Crusader (Note: Avenger sounded too harmful, so they changed it to a more heartfelt term) and his struggles with fighting polluters. The storyline is almost a carbon copy of Captain Planet, and the show was easily identifiable as a cash-in to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. You can even tell by the theme song.

Instead of Toxie hooking up with a blind bimbo and having sex with her, he gets a "girlfriend" who lost her glasses. Apparently, disabilities are too much of a sensitive topic to be aired on TV. They ripped out all the violence and replaced the latter with his magical mop that sweeps crime away. Toxic Crusaders is inevitably a mash-up of every popular 90's show.

The influences of TMNT, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Captain Planet, and even Creepy Crawlers shine through its tromatic skin. While being a rip-off of everything kids loved, you cannot help yourself but enjoy, and even laugh at the piece of toxic sludge that it is. Lloyd Kaufman has really expanded the Troma video library by creating a cartoon show. It makes me wonder what Troma wouldn't do.

It seems for a while, Kaufman went on a merchandising binge, creating comics, toys, lunch boxes, video games, books, and even stickers. Due to these policies, it's hard to tell which is more well-known, The Avenger or the Crusader. The film has iconic villains and it's own strong charisma. Maybe that is why Troma is always so appealing.

Sometimes, I wonder what the world would have been like, had the live-action Toxic Crusaders film been made. Perhaps in Citizen Toxie, we would have seen Toxie take on good Toxie, and destroy him. This is a cheesy blast through nostalgia and is more easily available than the rest of the shows we love.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow. I forgot this show even existed. Thanks for reminding me that not all the cartoons I grew up on were awesome.

And now for some reason I can't stop thinking about the Swamp Thing animated series...