Wednesday, June 29, 2016

'Wander Over Yonder' Wanders Away Forever


In the summer of 2013, the world was introduced to relentlessly optimistic Wander and his best pal, Sylvia in the Disney XD series, Wander Over Yonder. The series, created by Craig McCracken, opened well with a US viewership of 2.89 million, however as the series progressed its viewership dwindled even though the quality of the series consistently knocked it out of the park. This past Monday the series finale, "The End of the Galaxy", was aired and ultimately was a perfect send off for the show. If you haven't watched this series yet, you are missing out on simple yet beautiful moral lessons, eclectic and highly energetic characters, and some of the best comedy writing and pacing in animation to date.


Wander's optimism and desire to befriend Lord Hater
provides no shortage of great comedy.
With the two simple beliefs that it never hurts to help and an enemy is a friend you haven't made yet, the series saw Wander (Jack McBrayer) and Sylvia (April Winchell) traverse their galaxy while constantly frustrating and outwitting Lord Hater (Keith Ferguson), the first season main villain who's goal is to conquer the galaxy and be the greatest in the galaxy. Lord Hater is constantly sidetracked by his frustration over Wander's attempts to befriend him much to the aggravation of Commander Peepers (Tom Kenny), Lord Hater's second in command who wants to see Lord Hater succeed if only he would stop hindering himself. Their adventures throughout the galaxy provides much comedy and some fantastic episodes with plenty of spoofs.

An enemy is a friend you haven't made yet,
including Lord Dominator.
The balance of the show was deliciously disrupted with the introduction of Lord Dominator (Fred Tatasciore and Noel Wells) in the second season, who quickly became a fan favorite and brought an intense level of darkness with a delightful dash of sarcastic wit to several episodes of the show. The most notable of these would have to be the season two premiere, which saw Wander remain optimistic and determined to befriend Lord Dominator even in the face of his own certain demise, and the musical episode "My Fair Hatey" featuring seven catchy original songs.

"I crush all your hopes and then I watch you cry."


One of the most hilarious storylines as well as simultaneously heart breaking was Lord Hater's crush on Lord Dominator once he discovered that Lord Dominator was, in fact, a woman. Seeing him go to such lengths in order to win her admiration and love, including wrecking his own attack on her forces much to Commander Peeper's chagrin, was fantastic and made it all the more painful when his dreams of dating Lord Dominator were cruelly crushed by Dominator herself.

Wander Over Yonder is a series that unfortunately never got the love and recognition it so desperately deserved. It has plenty of nods to other animated series and styles that are fun to recognize and beautifully done comedy that will have you rolling with laughter. There are many episodes that are amazing and it is nearly impossible to pick essential ones for viewing. The great thing is that you can watch them out of order and still enjoy the series.

So full of love! Thank you, Wander!
We're all going to miss Wander Over Yonder now that the series is finished and we're excited to see what Craig McCracken comes up with next. Never forget the lessons Wander showed us, including don't feed the trolls, it never hurts to help, and that an enemy is a friend you haven't made yet! Miss you Wander, thank you for everything and for always being able to find the good in everything and everyone. This show made the world a bit of a brighter place, even during these crazy times.
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