Thursday, October 17, 2013

RR Extreme Ghostbusters

When somethings strange.. in the neighborhood... who you gonna call? The new guys!

Name: Extreme Ghostbusters: Volume One
Created by Dan Aykroyd & Harold Ramis
Directed by Audu Paden
Original run 1997
Genre Horror/comedy/drama animated series

Produced as a direct sequel to the 1980s cartoon The Real Ghostbusters, Extreme Ghostbusters is one of the very little examples of a proper revival continuation of a classic 80s animated series.

The writers, mostly the same crew behind RG, took this opportunity to show actual real passage of time instead of going for an easier route like all the usual reboots.

This new show followed a new generation of Ghostbusters taking over the ghost hunting business while the older original crew got a more sideline/cameo role.

Extreme Ghostbusters followed this team of misfits, real unlikely heroes slowing shaping up to the challenge. They were designed to be quite different, not quite your regular heroes for TV - animated or otherwise. The producers weren't too keen on the idea at first, but the production was able to make it pass (this would have never gotten green-lighted nowadays, I tell ya...).

Taking place several years after the original cartoon series, due to a lack of paranormal activities over the years, the boys went out of business.

Ray, Peter and Winston went all their separate ways.

Only Egon Spengler stayed at the Firehouse-

But now it seems a new wave of paranormal sightings confirmed a return of the spooks all around Manhattan.

To help him face these new events Egon is farced to hire recruits to form a new team from his own class at the University he teaches at.

This "next generation" are the all-new Extreme Ghostbusters team!

Eduardo Rivera, a lazy slacker with a fear of death, Garrett Miller, a sports enthusiast with a disability but his wheelchair will never stop him from heading head first in any kind of situation, goth girl Kylie Griffin, an expert on all things paranormal and the occult who even made her very own custom proton pack/trap combo, and finally Roland Jackson, our tech man and the brains of the team.

Yes. Those are quite unlikely heroes but they were the only ones to attend Spengler's course!

A new wave of ghosts is attacking New York City, and they're all more and more powerful ghosts.

Often escaped ghosts the old team never got to properly contain.

Even Janine is back as the secretary of the team (slightly trying to protect our boy Egon) and Slimer now official the team pet, but less annoying than he was near the end of the original series.

Being more of a revival of the brand than a reunion of sorts, we are mostly treated to an all-new cast of characters and voice actors. 

Maurice LaMarche is of course back in the role of Egon. The veteran actor helps bring these youngsters together. Billy West taking over Slimer. Oh, and Tara Strong did a pretty neat Kylie if I may say so.

The show is a bit more mature than its predecessor in tone. Even darker at times.

The animation and ghost's design comes from Adelaide Productions, also behind the fantastic but underrated Men in Black: The Series and Godzilla: The Series. And it shows, the cartoon is high quality, slick and even stylized at times. The creatures look creepy and fascinating.

Compared to other Ghostbusters material, this series rarely references the films and tried to stand on its own a bit more.

Extreme Ghostbusters possessed a great reinterpretation of Ray Parker Jr. theme song, performed for the occasion by voice actor Jim Cummings. Like the show, it was modern, slick and perfectly capture the more serious tone of this "Extreme" team.

And the score was simply brilliant, more in tone with the original movies than the previous cartoon. Composed by Jim Latham who had also worked on the Godzilla animated series.

The series ran for a total of 40 episodes, only one season from September to December 1997. Sadly despite great reception, the network canceled it due to a slow start and "modest" ratings.

This DVD pictured above only contains the first 13 episodes, the only disc released so far.

It featured the great 2-parter introduction, although I think the better episodes came later on such as the great follow-up to an old Real Ghostbusters episode, Grundelesque, which tied into Kylie's background.

And let's not forget the fantastic 2-parter finale Back in the Saddle. Where we finally got to see the original Busters back, teaming up with the new kids, back after years of inactivity. It was a great memorable episode(s).

Sure, at times, Eduardo can get on people (and Kylie)'s nerve, but he was such a fun annoying character!

The new Ghostbusters also got to use some nice new toys, from traps to proton packs specially tailored for the new threats. And they even got to drive an Ecto-Fire Truck and even the Ecto-Garbage Truck!!

It was great to see them learning to work along, and their constant clashes with the authorities in pure Ghostbusters fashion!

Overall, it's perfectly fine follow-up to the series. A great new take on Ghostbusters and a worthy entry in the franchise.

There are some weak episodes of course, here and there, but overall it's a great show well worth your time specially if you're a fan of Ghostbusters.

Even though it only lasted a couple of months, the show went on producing new toy lines (which the low sales probably caused the cancellation of the show) as well as several videogames on PC, PS1 and the Game Boys.

I give it:
2.5 / 3 Felixes!


  1. One of my favorite animated shows.

    1. I'd go as far as calling it superior to the classic Real Ghostbusters cartoon!