23 December 2000 | willydefalco
Successful spin-off in my eyes
Being a fan of the Disney movie it was natural for me to see how Disney would do on translating it to a weekly TV series. And I was pretty happy with the results. Throughout it's three season life it managed to bring out more of the characters that I loved from the movie, while bringing new characters to enjoy.
In the series Ariel was maybe three or four years younger than in the movie and still headstrong about seeing the world above her. Flounder is still a yellow guppie scared of everything and best pals with Ariel. Sebastion is still the babysitter of Ariel but less stricter. (I don't recall him ever ratting out Ariel throughout the course) The rest of the cast are still pretty much the same too.
Of the new characters the best recurring ones have to be the Lobster Mobster and his sidekick the Shrimp. Two spoofs on Al Capone and one of his goons. They always showed up trying to take over things but in the end ended up doing more damage to themselves than to other. There was also Urchin, an orphan who through the Lobster Mobster eventually became another friend with Ariel, even hinting as a love interest in the future.
The show even threw in references to the movie, with an occasional visit from Ursula and even Erik the prince, who commented on one day meeting that mermaid he saw in that certain episode.
The show ended with an episode dedicated to Hans Christian Anderson, telling it through an animated Hans reading his classic story to a group of children, the story involving Ariel and Flounder and the entire gang. The last image was perhaps the best of the show, a painted image of Ariel lying on a rock by the sea, smiling, looking out at the distance.
I'm glad that Disney still shows this cartoon on their channel even after many years, and I still look forward to seeing each episode. I only hope that the new sequel will provide Disney with the motivation to continue once again with the series.