Friday, June 12, 2015
10 'Phineas and Ferb' Things We'll Miss
We've finally reached the end of 104 fantastic days of summer and now it's time to say farewell to the much beloved animated series, Phineas and Ferb, at 9 PM tonight on Disney XD. I'll admit that when I first heard of this series, I wrote it off and didn't think much of it. In 2011 while I was channel surfing, I happened upon the Phineas and Ferb movie, Across the 2nd Dimension. Even though I only watched several minutes of the movie, I found myself laughing the entire time. It was at that point that I watched the pilot on Netflix and became instantaneously hooked after the theme song intro. My love for this show is unending and I find saying goodbye at long last to be quite painful. So instead of saying goodbye, let's instead celebrate all this series has achieved by recognizing the unique aspects of Phineas and Ferb that we will miss the most.
1) Those Incredibly Catchy Songs
Nearly every episode contained a song that was guaranteed to be stuck in your head for at least a week after you heard it. You think Frozen's "Let It Go" was catchy? Try getting "Gitchee Gitchee Goo" out of your head! It's been stuck in mine since 2011 and has been the go-to tune for many sing-along sessions in my car. There's no shortage of songs from the series with an estimated 300 plus original songs created for the show spanning genres from the blues, rap, hip hop, and even big band. It's amazing that so many songs were created by the show's team and I don't think any show has had such an expansive discography as Phineas and Ferb's. The music is sure to be enjoyed by many for years to come and the only question now is when does the complete Phineas and Ferb musical collection get released to iTunes?!
2) Dr. Doofenshmirtz's Inators
We could always count on Dr. Doofenshmirtz's invention names to end with "-inator", no matter what wacky name he came up with for them. From his simply named Freeze-Inator to the Shift-The-Earth's-Position-Further-Away-From-The-Sun-Inator, Dr. Doofenshmirtz always had a new invention up his sleeve to aid him in his quest for complete domination of the Tri-State Area. Of course these inventions also had another component that you could always count on: a self-destruct button. Oh Dr. D, how we're gonna miss all of your crazy Inators!
3) Candace's Busting Attempts
No matter how hard she tried, Candace never could quite bust her troublesome brothers! A character that all older siblings could relate to, she incessantly made wild attempts to reveal to her mother what Phineas and Ferb were up to every single summer day. Thanks to a mysterious force though, their inventions would always disappear just before mom showed up to offer snacks, leaving Candace frustrated to no end. It's not until 20 years into the future when the kids are on a time-travel trip that their mom officially "busts" the boys, however she is shown to be proud of their many accomplishments. As the older sister to twin girls, I get it Candace. All you wanted was to protect your younger siblings while also having that sweet satisfaction of finally busting your siblings. No longer hearing her crazed laugh when she gets close to achieving a bust or her rapidly calling out "Mom! Mom! Mom!" will definitely leave an emptiness for all fans.
4) Agent P's Lair Entrances
Perry led a covert life as Agent P and every day brought a new mission briefed to him by Major Monogram in his lair beneath the Flynn-Fletcher house. Agent P never entered this lair the same way twice though and had many different ways of getting into his base. He's taken an elevator, gone down a tube system, and even taken a log ride reminiscent of "It's A Small World". Perhaps one of my favorites though is when he made multiple attempts to get into his lair via a dog house while wearing a cone of shame that hilariously prevented him from getting in.
5) Running Gags and Witty References
There were several things we could always count on with a Phineas and Ferb episode including iconic lines such as "I know what we're gonna do today!", "Whatcha doin'?", "Where's Perry?", "Doofenshmirtz Evil Incorporated" (sing it!), "Yes, yes it is", and "Curse you, Perry the Platypus!". There were other running gags though that were random and always a delight when they popped up. Favorites of these included the giant floating baby head and a talking zebra that only Candace could inexplicably see every once in a while. The great thing about all of these gags and repeated lines though was the fact that the writers managed to keep them fresh by introducing variations upon them that were funny and unique. For instance in the fantasy themed episode, "Exacliferb", the evil jingle was hilariously modified to "Malefshmirtz Evil Incorporated, but not really a corporation because corporations haven't been invented yet so it's more like a guild or a tradesman association!"
In addition to the running gags, there was a constant supply of witty references that both children and adults could appreciate. References alluded to all sorts of pop culture including Doctor Who, Star Wars, Monty Python, and Star Trek among many many others. These references made the series even more enjoyable and were incredibly fun to catch. Are we going to miss all of these fantastic gags and references? Yes, yes we are.
6) Infectious Optimism
Phineas and Ferb were always so incredibly positive that you couldn't help but smile at their can-do spirit. Their optimism tended to rub off on their peers and led to many fantastic summer achievements for the entire gang. There was one instance where Phineas did lose his infallible optimism briefly when they all became stranded on an island in "Summer Belongs to You". When he realizes that he can't come up with a way for them to get off the island even with all of his optimism, Phineas folds and gives up, noting, "At least we can sit and watch this beautiful sunset." It wasn't until Isabella gave him a much needed pep talk that he was set back on his usual optimism and discovered that he could in fact get them off. It's clear that his optimism was the driving force behind their ability to come up with the amazing inventions that they did and the show's unbelievably positive spirit is something so rare to come across in any television series these days. We need more characters like Phineas and Ferb to show that you can succeed in the world as a positive and optimistic person.
7) Doofenshmirtz and Perry: Best Frenemies Forever
Dr. Doofenshmirtz and Perry started out simply enough as your average nemeses, however over the course of the series their relationship evolved into a rich and complex dynamic. It was revealed during the first season that the two nemeses actually respected each other and had a deep regard for one another, as seen prominently in "It's About Time!". There were even multiple instances where one saved the other's life, usually Perry rescuing Dr. Doofenshmirtz. One of the greatest displays of their quirky relationship is illustrated in "Road to Danville", where the duo become stranded in the desert. They get on one another's nerves and eventually Dr. Doofenshmirtz abandons Perry in order to get on a bus that does not allow animals to ride. He feels so guilty about leaving Perry behind that he soon gets off and finds Perry, working with him to return to Danville. They have such a strong bond between them and in "Act Your Age" it is revealed that they are bowling buddies regularly spending time together each week. To go from nemeses, to frenemies, to practically best friends has been an engaging and intriguing journey for these two characters.
8) OWCA (Organization Without A Cool Acronym)
This is the secret agent organization that Perry works for and it consists completely of animal agents around the globe overseen by Major Monogram and his unpaid intern, Carl. It was always hilarious to see other animal agents and the whole idea of a secret agent animal organization is funny unto itself. One particular stand out joke centered around Agent T, a turkey agent who had something tragic happen to him around Thanksgiving. Bet you can infer what. There was also the wild goose chase of Agent G and the fantastic Christmas party with all of the animal agents in attendance. We still get an OWCA special in the fall, so we don't have to say farewell to these kooky animal agents just yet.
9) The Flynn-Fletcher Family
The fact that the Flynn-Fletchers were a blended family didn't lessen the strength and depth of their love for one another. Their family was an excellent representation of a fantastic family consisting of members with their own unique quirks who loved and supported one another. Linda and Lawrence set the bar for married couples and are definitely a fantastic couple. Lawrence's nerdiness and Linda's neuroses were what they loved about one another and even though they did run into issues, they never lost sight of their love for each other and showed that even though marriage takes work, you can have an unbreakable bond. The sibling relationship between Candace, Phineas, and Ferb was also one not short on problems, but it was incredibly realistic. Candace felt the need to be responsible and keep an eye out for her younger siblings while Phineas and Ferb sometimes did things that they didn't realize annoyed Candace. We should all look to the Flynn-Fletcher family as a shining example of what it truly means to be a supportive and loving family.
10) Strong Friendships and Relationships
The various dynamics between all the different characters on the series were all intriguing and fun to watch develop and grow. Candace and Jeremy started out having crushes on each other and eventually entered into a relationship together. Baljeet and Buford started out as nerd and bully with their relationship developing into a strong friendship. Phineas and Ferb loved their pet platypus unconditionally and Perry had an incredible amount of love for them too, thus making it interesting when their bond was tested in Across the 2nd Dimension when the boys learned of Perry's covert life as Agent P. Then there was Isabella with her unrequited crush on Phineas who endlessly supported him while hoping that he would finally wake up to the fact that she liked him more as a friend. Hilariously he remained completely oblivious to her numerous and obvious hints until his friends straight up told him of her crush on him during the summer after their high school graduation. Juggling and developing all of these different relationships and dynamics throughout the series is an incredible feat for all of the writers for the show. We'll definitely miss seeing the characters interact with each other and grow together.
This series will leave a big honkin' hole in my heart that probably will never be fully filled by another animated series. Phineas and Ferb has achieved so much for the animation world and has made an incredible impact on so many people's lives, including my own. So thank you, Dan Povenmire and Jeff "Swampy" Marsh, for tirelessly working to get this show on the air and for making it into an incredible and unforgettable series that we can't wait to share with future generations. Thank you to every single person who worked on Phineas and Ferb and added to the magic of the series. We can't wait to see what you have in store for us in the future and we're certain that whatever it is, it'll be great. Farwell, Phineas and Ferb! *sniff* I'm not sweating through my eyes, you are!
Posted by Jill Baker
Labels: 2D animation, agent p, animation, articles, dan povenmire, Disney, ferb, JB, jeff swampy marsh, perry the platypus, phineas, phineas and ferb, pnf, US animation,
I am a pediatric ER nurse, biology major, writer, scientist, animation enthusiast, film critic, reader, friend, daughter, sister, aunt, geek, nerd, dork, member of Dumbledore's army, shieldmaiden, and gamer.