Xavier: Renegade Angel - Seasons One and Two review, Xavier: Renegade Angel DVD review
Starring
Vernon Chatman, John Lee, Alyson Levy, Jim Tozzi, Heather Lawless, Brian Stack, John Flansburgh, Vincent D’Onofrio, Judah Friedlander, Bill Hader
Director
Various
Xavier: Renegade Angel - Seasons One and Two

Reviewed by Will Harris

()

C

artoon Network’s Adult Swim line-up has a tendency to feature series which appeal to those with slightly skewed senses of humor, but it’s closer to the “batshit crazy” end of the fan spectrum where you’ll find the aficionados of “Xavier: Renegade Angel.” Created by John Lee, Victor Chatman, Alyson Levy, and Jim Tozzi (all of whom worked on MTV’s “Wonder Showzen”), “Xavier” is the kind of show that inspires fanatical devotion and unadulterated antipathy but precious little in between.

You need proof? We’ve got it, courtesy of a random dozen tweets about the show:

1. I've never talked to anyone that thought Xavier: Renegade Angel was funny.
2. miss the days of smoking so much weed that I couldn't see straight and watching Xavier: Renegade Angel with the fellas.
3. Just saw Xavier: Renegade Angel for the first time, and my life is forever changed. Awesome.
4. If you like Wonder Showzen, you might dig Xavier: Renegade Angel. Same guys, CGI, *and* a priest fucks a gorilla televangelist.
5. omfggg xavier renegade angel??? umm wtff that's a mind tripp
6. XAVIER RENEGADE ANGEL IS THE STUPIDEST SHOW EVERRRRRR!
7. Just watched Xavier: Renegade Angel, and I can honestly say it is the strangest fucking thing I've ever seen, and I've seen strange stuff.
8. Why is xavier renegade angel still a show ... Can I complain to someone about this?
9. Xavier renegade angel is the illest show in the whole entire world haha
10. Does anyone watch Xavier Angel Renegade?---Is it just me or do you feel as though your life makes no sense after watching it...
11. if u ever watched Xavier Renegade Angel your dumber than u were b4 u seen it
12. Xavier: Renegade Angel is on DVD. WHO IN THE WORLD WOULD BUY THAT? No, seriously, I want to meet someone who actually likes that show.

While including all of these Tweets may seem like unabashed filler, our defense in this matter is that it would be even more of a waste of space to try to explain the goings-on within “Xavier: Renegade Angel,” so why not at least get some laughs out of it?

Seriously, just describing the titular character will be enough to blow most people’s minds. He’s humanoid, but he’s covered in brown fur, has a beak as well as a mouth, six nipples, a snake where his left hand should be, one blue eye and one brown eye, and a third eye of unspecified color where his genitalia should be. Also, his knees bend at the joints backwards, and he rarely wears anything but a loin cloth and tennis shoes. He’s kind of a wandering philosopher, a la Caine in “Kung Fu,” which is a rather philosophical career for someone who was raised by an alcoholic slut of a mother who tried to abort him but, when she found out it was too late to do so, instead just had the doctor torture him while he was still in the womb. And don’t even get us started on his now-deceased father, who may or may not have met his demise at Xavier’s own hand.

Fun stuff, right? Well, no one has ever claimed that “Xavier: Renegade Angel” was funny in anything resembling a traditional sense, but it definitely has its legitimately hilarious moments, though the lines come so fast and furious and the plots develop so completely randomly that, before you can take the time to laugh at anything, you’re usually too distracted by the outrageousness of something else that’s going on.

Take, for example, the episode entitled “Escape from Squatopian Freedom,” which Wikipedia describes thusly: “Puggler the punk rock juggler steals Xavier's significant necklace after tricking him into entering Squatopia, an anarchist commune. Now Xavier, a giant sperm, the world's oldest slave and an anarchist crying out for chains must travel to the Burning Man Festival – named Burning Person so as not to be sexist – to get it back.”

Fact: “Xavier: Renegade Angel – Seasons One and Two” presents you with 20 episodes of the show, and there is not a single one which comes across as any less of a mindfuck than the one you have just read about. It’s also full of the sort of humor that will cause coronaries in the average conservative. The average viewer will be left staring blankly at the screen in a way which is incomparable to anything else on television outside of the rest of the Adult Swim line-up, and even then it’s hovering a good 90 degrees of trippy higher than its peers. It deserves a middling range star rating because it’s such a love-it-or-hate-it show, but since it’s my discretion, I’m upping it to a full three stars solely because of Xavier’s one-sided conversation with Mother Earth in Season One’s “Bloodcorn":

“What’s that, Mother Earth? You say this factory is poisoning you? You need my help? What’s that? You want me to repeat everything you say? What? Sure, I’d love to hear a joke. Who’s there? Banana who? Banana who? Banana who?!?” (Flash forward two hours.) “BANANA WHO?!?!?” (A pause.) “Orange who? Ha! Ha! I AM pretty glad!”

Anyone who can say that “Xavier: Renegade Angel” is stupid after reading that bit clearly hasn’t paid enough attention to it. It might be completely off its trolley, but it’s definitely still funny.

Special Features: As is only appropriate, the special features for the “Xavier” set are about as surreal as the show itself. There’s “Xaviercize!” (“Xavier guides you through a metaphysical fitness workout video”) and entrants from what was apparently some sort of “Make Your Own ‘Xavier’ Episode” contest, but I have no clue what to make of the so-called “fanmentary” tracks, which – at least based on the one for the Season One finale, “Shakashuri Blowdown”make even less sense than the show itself.

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