[VoxSpace Selects] BoJack Horseman – For Maggot Infested Humour And Modern Man’s Vision Of Utopia

“Let’s Get Rich” This Is BoJack Horseman. Obviously!

A humanoid horse imposingly kisses a female human by a beach on a certain peaceful and calm night. Crickets cheer in the distance as stars gleam on the horizon. The blue of the night sky is planted above the blue of the ocean. . . Welcome to the show, BoJack Horseman!

As Netflix releases the fifth season of BoJack, written originally by Raphael Bob-Waksberg and Hanawalt, once again we get to see the ceaseless moving of a bright beautiful menagerie of animals pitted against humans. Sadcom regains a whole new dimension after Rick and Morty and promises another deplorable journey in God forsaken “Hollywoo”-the irony.  Bojack Horseman himself is a distressed, self-loathing protagonist consumed deep into the toxic celebrity culture and it is just the kind of show that a generation of unresolved psychological complexities needs.

“I guess I’ll just try

And make you understand

That I’m more horse than a man

Or I’m more man than a horse”

Pretty much sums up the absurdities of his “horsin’ around” and trying to establish some sort of meaning within himself. Netflix might technically categorize the show as a comedy, but at the heart of this show is also a universe filled with characters, indifferent to personal sufferings, leading a life spattered with distractions. Parodying existence, casually throwing animal puns, giving two hoots about misery, friendships and personal loss, and oh, of course, subverting the very idea of comedy itself.

Why The Show Has Its Own Tenor

Lisa Hanawalt, an illustrator, has done a commendable job in filling BoJack Horseman with delightful creatures like Princess Carolyn, Mr Peanutbutter, and Pinky Penguin to savour the taste of animal puns, like a bear holding a placard saying ‘BoJack’s views are unbearable’.

It has to be one of the saddest shows, wrapped in the foil of comedy, I have ever seen. A show, self-referential and pivoted around a culture so hollow and toxic at its core! This show would never for once make you snug and happy without thrusting you back from the screen every now and then.

BoJack is perhaps the rightful heir of Ozymandias, the “king of kings” writhing in its arrogant pride and abundance of yesteryear. So if you are planning to watch BoJack Horseman unwind for a while, embrace yourself to this existential dark comedy; even a dog excels where our favourite philosophers stumble “ The key to being happy isn’t a search for meaning.”

Image result for bojack horseman

BoJack Horseman differs from other standard comedy shows, gracias to this surreal world of American Dream, where the manager of sinking Penguin Publishers is actually a penguin. It is Los Angeles and nobody cares about where one hails from and it is that one opportunity to beat your boats against the current.

BoJack made it for himself, irrespective of all his self-deprecating jokes and substance abuse into which he has lately fallen. Built his residence on a cliff surrounded by palm trees, where he has the privilege to throw random parties and vomit candyfloss.

The same has also made him aloof and self-destructive, unhappy and forever jumping from one …to another. Paparazzi (birds sitting on windowpanes with cameras) won’t leave him alone and his manoeuvres make him the prisoner of his own device.

BoJack amassed popularity and fame doing “Horsing’ Around” somewhere in the 90s, and you cannot help but draw a parallel between BoJack and Joey Tribbiani (F.R.I.E.N.D.S) as they both prefer to bask a lil’ more in their past glories.

Now, Bojack Horseman can both be the biggest empathiser and critic of the 1990s-2000’s lifestyle disorder, punching its viewer rough in the gut with its show-biz jokes and witty remarks. As the characters try to fill in their own lacuna, you know that the sum of these activities would never amount to anything particular.

To Creators Bob Waksberg And Hanawalt

A community is trapped within this sitcom, with multiple references to the real world you cannot help but reflect on the general conditions of things. Thanks to animation, that BoJack Horseman receives a waggish treatment at the hands of Bob Waksberg and Hanawalt, without letting go off its hook the darker elements.

BoJack’s grandfather hurriedly reminds himself that “Modern American man cannot manage a woman’s emotions.”  So, apart from subtly bringing into life the society we live in with gentle strokes of a paintbrush, the show is a bitter reminder of its let downs.

If BoJack is using one distraction and the other to carry on living, it also means every such exploit is carving a deep cavity within him. The show reverberates with a Sisyphean meaninglessness of life and populates itself with characters who are blessed with different degrees of awareness of the same, irrespective of their varying social leverages and celebrity status.

Not Your Daily Soap!

Season 5 is a fine embellishment of some of the show’s favourite characters like asexual Todd, chronically depressed Diana Nguyen, frivolous and stupid Mr Peanut Butter. The season does not spare its hero so easily. Each time BoJack suffers from the repercussion of his actions, as he camouflages under different identities, you know these people are inappropriate to fit in anywhere else. Also, BoJack’s eulogy in season 5 once again is a stark reminder that this is BoJack, the humanoid horse, who took television by storm in the 90s.

“By the time you realize you’re sinking, it is too late,” Charlotte Carson, sometime during 1980.