At the center of a still-growing tornado of misguided criticism and ill-informed finger-pointing, Mike Judge is currently under heavy protection from edgy MTV executives wary of inflaming already dicey situation. You know the show. You know the accusations. But what you don't know is anything about the man to whose peculiar brain the sound of laughter takes on the distinctive chant of "Huh-huh, huh-huh, huh." But here for the first time are Judge's own words on the origins, obsessions and future of Beavis and Butt-Head. WILD CARTOON KINGDOM recruited Ren & Stimpy creator John Kricfalusi to conduct this interview. What follows is a transcript of their revealing conversation.
JOHN KRICFALUSI: I guess they thought it would be cool to have two corrupters of youth together in the same interview. Just don't say anything that's going to get you in trouble with MTV.
MIKE JUDGE: Well, they can probably never fire me because that would involve saying the word fire, and that's a no-no.
JOHN: I watch the show a lot, it's actually my favorite cartoon, and the characters you're doing are much more subtle than what I do. I was wondering if you would describe their personalities. What's the difference between Beavis and Butt-Head?
MIKE: Butt-Head's definitely the leader. And Beavis is sort of one of these guys that... I've seen a lot of pairs of guys that have been hanging out together way too long-until they're laughing all the time...
JOHN: They kind of read each other's minds?
MIKE: Yeah, and Beavis is the guy who doesn't really know how to react to anything without Butt-Head around, He's definitely a sort of a tag-along in a way and will agree with anything Butt-Head wants to do. Every now and then he gets his own idea, but it's usually really out there. Although they're both pretty dumb, Butt-Head has just a little bit of common sense once in a while.
JOHN: Well, what are B&B? I guess they're white trash.
MIKE: They're what you call "tornado bait." I guess they're ... what would they be? Their parents are Baptists or something, I don't know.
JOHN: Are we ever going to see their parents?
MIKE: Maybe in the movie. I don't know.
JOHN: Whose house is it that they're at?
MIKE: We haven't really figured that out yet. I always thought it was Butt-Head's, but some people think it's Beavis' and I don't wsnt to deprive them of their image of what's going on. It's probably Butt-Head's though. And the bedroom you see-it's on the back of the album-is Butt-Head's.
JOHN: Do they sleep over and show stuff to each other?
MIKE: I think they're constantly crashing on the couch or whatever.
JOHN: Their parents never catch them doing stuff they shouldn't be doing?
MIKE: Not when we ever show it on the show. When the cameras are turned off, that kind of stuff happens-when you turn off that animation camera.
JOHN: How'd you come up with the names?
MIKE: It wasn't his name, but when I was in college a twelve-year-old kid next door called himself Iron Butt. They all called him Iron Butt because supposedly you could kick him in the butt as hard as you wanted and it wouldn't hurt him. He'd demonstrate this. He'd stick his butt out and kids would line up and just whack! kick him in the butt and he'd say, "See, it doesn't hurt."
JOHN: Did anyone ever cheat? Put a nail in their boot or something?
MIKE: [Laughing] Yeah, I did. I taught him a lesson. His parents were ... he had a single mother and she was just never around, and he'd be at our house, he'd sneak into our house, he'd be in the backyard, he actually burned down the tree in front of the house once. He was just a maniac and his parents weren't around. His friend, actually, we called Butt-Head, even though that wasn't his name. Then there was a kid in the neighborhood about three blocks away, his name was Bobby Beavis.
JOHN: Uh-oh, he's going to rear his head up and sue you or something.
MIKE: He wasn't anything like Beavis. I just liked the name. And he was sort of an athletic guy. He was just like a guy people thought was cool. There was this kid I knew who used to always just say, "Yeah, man, Beavis is cool." Out of the blue, he'd say that from time to time. It's so weird when I think about it. When I did the first B&B cartoon, I'd drawn them before I named them, I was just thinking, What am I going to name these guys? I almost didn't name Butt-Head "Butt-Head." I came real close to calling him something else. I can't remember what it was, but I put the storyboard down and came back to it like two weeks later and saw that I had written "Butt-Head" next to the picture, and it kind of made me laugh and I thought, Well, might as well go for every laugh you can get. It was really weird, when this thing started, to hear lawyers and MTV people calling me and actually saying "ButtHead." People tried to avoid it too. Someone would say, "Yeah, this Beavis and ... uh ... uhh," hoping I would save them: "and Butt-Head." I'd just let them dangle. "Beavis and what?"
JOHN: Are they genuinely evil or just stupid?
MIKE: No, I don't think either of them are genuinely evil, in fact, there's been episodes that I think were out of character for them. When the show started out, it was like all of a sudden we had to do 35 episodes and we had just a month and a half to write them, and it took me a while to realize that I was in charge. It was a little confu sing at first, so a few episodes got through that were kind of out of character, but basically they're not builies. They're not really cruel or malicious at any time, you know. They're looking for a cheap thrill, but not deliberately trying to hurt anybody. It's sort of like, the Three Stooges would go to someone's house and end up trashing the whole place, but it was usually by accident, you know? I think most of the damage that they do is by accident, or it's not intentional.
JOHN: More to impress the other guys? MIKE: Yeah. Exactly.
JOHN: When I was a kid it was like, who could be the coolest? Who could do the stupidest thing? And you knew it was a stupid thing to do, but you would do it just so you could be the coolest guy. And then you end up doing really cruel crap.
MIKE: Yeah, they're doing it because they think it looks cool and they're trying to impress each other. You know, at that age you want to show everyone else how wild you are. It's a combination of being bored, looking for a cheap thrill and being really stupid - a dangerous combination.
JOHN: When I was a kid, my cousins were really cruel to animals. They blew up frogs and they used to skip frogs along the lake. And I used to wonder, do they know animals feel pain? Like do Beavis and Butt-Head know that lower life-forms have feelings and rights, or are they just too stupid and they just think it's cool to watch them scream or something?
MIKE: Yeah, I think they're too stupid-they don't really understand what they're doing.
JOHN: Some kids do. When you're a kid, there's the kids that don't know, then there are the kids that do know. You can tell by their face, their eyes.
MIKE: When I was a kid, there was a guy who used to feed lizards to his pet snake, so he'd have to go kill lizards to feed them to it. He was telling me about all these ways he did it, and for a while I wanted to see him do it, but once I did ... I was a total animal lover when I was a kid, that's one thing I ought to clear up. I was a fanatical animal lover. Maybe that's partly why I'm fascinated by this thing It's like I wonder too, do they really understand that what they're doing is cruel, or does the pleasure they get from the cheap thrill outweigh or override any slight notion that they might be hurting some animal?
JOHN: Yeah, me too. I used to chase them. I went hunting with my friends and I had one friend who would blow up anything that moved. He had a shotgun, right, he'd look down his barrel ... and BOOM! You'd see the feathers flying and stuff. I used to chase the rabbits into the bush. I was a wimp. Do you think that kids that are cruel to animals will go to hell? Maybe we should really clear this up now so that nobody imitates anything they see in cartoons anymore.
MIKE: [Laughing] I think they'll go straight to hell.
JOHN: Good. Now that's clear. Do you think Beavis and Butt-Head will go to hell?
MIKE: Well, they still have a chance to maybe redeem themselves. I think they'll go to hell though. Go to hell in about a year.
JOHN: Are you going to go to hell? I know I'm going.
MIKE: Beavis is going to go to hell in an upcoming episode.
JOHN: Is it anything like the hell we imagine or is it cool?
MIKE: He has an out-of-body experience for a while and he goes up to heaven first, and Saint Peter is listing some of the things he did, he's saying, "Well, when you were five ears and six months and three days old, You mutilated an action figure in a most disturbing manner."
JOHN: Have you had Beavis and Butt-Head go to church?
MIKE: No, but that's an episode that I've actually half-written myself and I want to finish sometime.
JOHN: Is there anything you can't do? Where do you cross the line?
MIKE: Well, we can't do much of anything anymore. We're not cruel to animals anymore... I mean, Beavis and Butt-Head are not cruel to animals-which I think got a little blown out of proportion-but they're not even cruel to insects anymore.
JOHN: What about the kid down the street, what's his name again-Stewart? I saw the episode with the fishhook. That was pretty cool. Can they do that anymore?
MIKE: Yeah, we can still run that one. That one's okay because it's okay to be cruel to people-that's still the general rule.
JOHN: Okay. I'll buy that. People deserve to have cruelty inflicted upon them, but animals don't.
MIKE: You ought to try being cruel to some people. Actually, you're cruel to people in your cartoons, aren't you?
JOHN: I can't remember. It's been so long since I worked on it.
MIKE: Actually, that George Liquor, he gets ...
JOHN: Yeah, he gets a beating. He gets what-for, but he likes it.
MIKE: Pretty nice beating. That's cool. Well, I got to be careful what I say these days.
JOHN: What are your favorite kinds of stories?
MIKE: Well, recently a guy wrote one where B&B go to a mall. A lot of malls have fountains with a fake island in the middle, like this little area with fake palm trees and crap, so B&B actually get stranded on that island-and for some reason, that really makes me laugh. I don't know, I actually prefer the stories that are more low-key. I think a lot of writers tend to want B&B to go to France-they want to write something big. I like the ones where they're at Burger World being really stupid, or when they're just sort of kicking around their house couch-fishing.
JOHN: One of my favorite ones is when they show up at the gas station and they want some gas but they don't have anything to put it in. That was great. Put it in a bag. What did they want to do with the gas?
MIKE: Well, actually what they wanted to do with the gas, we had to cut.
JOHN: It's probably funnier that you don't know. It's such a non-sequitur the way it came out.
MIKE: It's actually funnier that they just wanted to get gas. I don't think they really understand the concept of containers too well because, in the [CENSORED] episode, you know. Beavis goes in and does his thing and he comes out and it's like, "And where's your container?" And he says, "Oh, we were supposed to use a container?" He figured he was just going to go in there and [CENSORED] and get paid for it.
JOHN: Boy, I can't believe you can get away with that stuff.
MIKE: Yeah, it's amazing what we can get away with and what we can't. But it's not for me to decide.
JOHN: There's two segments to your show. There's the stuff where you comment on the videos, and then there's the actual stories. Do you use scripts?
MIKE: Yeah. but the video comments are never scripted. I just go in and improvise a lot of them. A lot of times, one of the writers will come and just hang out and kind of help out. but we just watch the video a bunch of times and then I go into the booth and mess around. Then Susie Lynn, the producer of those segments, goes in and lays all the voices over the video. Actually. one technical thing that I don't think has ever been mentioned in an article is that all the cutaways of B&B during the videos are all pulled from past shows ... well, most of them. Once in a while we'll animate one, but they're all...
JOHN: Pulled out of other episodes?
MIKE: Yeah, an editor just takes bits of them on the couch and syncs it up with mouth positions. Do you guys start with scripts?
JOHN: No, we draw little doodles in the dirt in the sandbox... No, we don't use scripts. We write outlines, like five-page outlines. And then we go to storyboard.
MIKE: That's what makes it, that's what's cool about it. You're not afraid...
JOHN: To get fired.
MIKE: You're not a wuss. Not afraid to, make a little less money. About six months ago someone was telling me, "Don't feel bad that you sold your rights, that you're not getting the cut of merchandising, John Kricfalusi just signed a multimillion-dollar deal with Warner Bros." Did that really happen?
JOHN: Maybe on Earth 2 or something. Well, let's hope Warner Brothers reads this and says. "Oh. Jesus, we forgot to send him that million bucks!" Do you get consulted on toys and merchandise and stuff?
MIKE: Yeah. There's so many I haven't really had time to...
JOHN: So are there any weird toys coming out?
MIKE: We've got the B&B "Last Word" box. It's like this little box and you press a button and it goes Hehh, heh, heh, heh and says a few things, It says "Ass-wipe."
JOHN: B&B never get their come-uppance for the poop they do. That's a for cartoon characters. Is that conscious, or do you just naturally write the stories that way?
MIKE: It's not conscious. Now it sort of is. One thing I was thinking about is that they probably get their come-uppance about the same percentage that people in real life do. Basically, stealing for all practical purposes might as well be legal in New York. It's like if someone steals something from your car you call the police so they get the statistics, but basically there's nothing ... stealing is pretty much no problem.
JOHN: What do you think the "catch rate" is?
MIKE: You probably won't get caught, so I think they ought to just go ahead and legalize stealing.
JOHN: It's good practice for becoming network executives.
MIKE: Yeah. Stealing, you'll go far in life. Actually, there is something funny about getting away with it. Part of the reason people like the show is that there's this freedom to B&B because they're stupid. They're free because they don't know any, better. So they can just run around and do whatever, and do whatever, and most of the time they don't get caught.
JOHN: You mean the original Ren or the new one?
MIKE: No, your Ren. It doesn't sound much like your speaking voice at all.
JOHN: Well, hopefully.
MIKE: People say that the Beavis voice doesn't sound like me or some other voices. Butt-Head I think sounds like me. I think I do too many voices in these shows. I think it's because we have trouble getting voice talent. Do you still get residuals?
JOHN: Yeah, they're kind of small. You get these checks for 97 cents.
MIKE: I get a check for $11 about every two months for the theme song.
JOHN: That's more than I get. For some reason we don't get any money for the songs, and we wrote millions of songs.
MIKE: Oh, yeah. You wrote "Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy. It's on an album.
JOHN: Yeah, but that's not the real version. They re-recorded it.
MIKE: Oh really? Just not to give you ...
JOHN: I guess. I don't know. Bob Camp re-recorded it. It's his voice instead of my voice now.
MIKE: Really? Man, that's cold-blooded.
JOHN: Did MTV trademark all that stuff?
MIKE: Beavis and Butt-Head?
JOHN: No. "That's cool" and "[The laugh]."
MIKE: From now on, when someone says something "sucks," they're ripping me off, And they're going to get sued. So all you kids out there, if you're sitting around the house and you say, "This sucks , you owe me some money.
JOHN: Are you a millionaire yet?
MIKE: No, I'm actually not close. I think this year, though, has been really amazing for me. I didn't think I would make this much money.
MIKE: A lot ot people who criticize it, completely miss that it's a parody.
JOHN: They criticize which? B&B or MTV?
MIKE: B&B and MTV. They say it figures MTV would do such a vulgar, awful, horrible show and they completely miss that it's satirizing the people who watch MTV.
JOHN: What kind ot people watch MTV?
MIKE: Let's see. Like Huh-huh, huh-huhh. Really dumb people. People like B&B. A lot of critics have caught on to that. Lots of critics who hate MTV like B&B parody and they actully compliment MTV for being willing to do it. It seems like there's a lot of people who just do not understand satire. They think it's weird. There's people who just don't understand you portray something or just explore a character, it means you're condoning it, saying this is the way to live. It's just so simple-minded. If these people single character on TV would be...
MIKE: Just about. I think Doug has probably done some bad things. In Order to have a plot, you have to have a conflict, something bad has to happen. Why should every single character be an honor student who goes around helping others and never doing anything wrong? Is that like the rule or something? There's another law. Let's pass a law saying You can't do satire about any type of negative character at all, That would be a cool Iaw.
JOHN: So, has everyone in Hollywood called you up now wanting to do a million things with you? Is there going to be a B&B movie?
MIKE: I think so, yeah. Right now, no one knows where it's going to go.
JOHN: Why don't you suggest the most ignorant casting possible?
MIKE: I think what'll probably happen is it will be Mel Gibson and Danny Glover. A producer who works with Mike Meyers was telling me -cause we were saying if it's live-action, it's really going to seem like Wayne's World more than it already does-and I thought he was joking at first, but he said, "I bet they'll try and cast Mike Meyers and Dana Carvey as B&B." I kind of laughed,and he said, "No, I'm dead serious. That's who they will try and get." The big executives will say that's who it should be. I think at the point when they were first starting to talk about a movie, it was a little bit different back then. Now the cartoon is really popular and everyone knows what it is, so I don't know if I can see it live-action anymore. It would have to be written in such a way that the humor isn't all B&B.
JOHN: Are you going to do it in the same style?
MIKE: I'd like to see it in the same style, maybe a few scenes of full animation. One thing I always heard from the begining when I talked about this being a movie - was that the rule is that animated movies don't work unless they're Disney movies for kids. Unless they're family movies.
JOHN: So why are they calling you?
MIKR: Well, they're saying live-action is okay. They're giving all these examples, they list all the movies that were for adults that didn't work and I kind of think that those movies didn't work for other reasons.
JOHN: Probably because they were crappy movies.
MIKE: That could be.
JOHN: Why do they think The Simpsons works?
MIKE: The Simpsons went against the rules and it was huge. And in a way, this went against the rules also and it was huge, and Ren & Stimpy did. It seems like now is the time that it could really work.
JOHN: Actually, a lot of movie companies asked me if I would do a R&S movie. They still ask me. I don't think they're supposed to, but they do anyway.
MIKE: That wouldn't be live-action, huh?
JOHN: I hope so. It would have to be. I would only do it if it were live-action. Al Pacino as Ren and John Goodman as Stimpy. Hell. Oprah Winfrey as Stimpy.
MIKE: I think Al Pacinio would be cool.
JOHN: People must be asking about not only B&B, but other kinds of movies. Have you got a ten-picture deal yet?
MIKE: I've got a huge, gigantic deal. We're talking about huge deals.
JOHN: What would you be doing on it? Writing? Directing?
MIKE: Yeah, both. I want to make some liveaction films, but then I want to do animation again. I just want to get away from it for a while. I'd like to do some more. I'm really eager to write some other stuff.
JOHN: Are you going to do a serious movie as your next...
MIKE: No. I don't think so. I don't think any movie I would do would be too serious or serious at all.
JOHN: You're not going to save society or anything?
MIKE: I'll make some B&B educational tapes or something. No, I don't think I'm going to save society. I've already ruined it. It's somebody else's job to come clean it up.
JOHN: Do you have any stars you want to work with? Who do you want to boss around?
MIKE: Let's see, who do I want to boss around? I got to work with Cher already, but I kind of wimped out. I didn't boss her around very much. I tried, but you know...
JOHN: Girls really go for cartoonists.
MIKE: Yeah [laughs]. Oh yeah. Boy, if I was single, I'd probably be in bars going, Huhhuh, huh-huh.
JOHN: You know, I haven't asked you one question [WCK] gave me. Maybe I should ask you some of these. They handed me a list here. [Reading] "Are you more like Beavis or Butt-Head? What is Mike like? Who is Mike Judge?" You want to answer any of those?
MIKE: Who is Mike Judge? Let me think.
JOHN: That's stupid. Let's not answer them.
MIKE: Say, "The only way I could possibly answer that question would be in a nonverbal fashion." I think I could do an interpretive dance that would answer that question for you.
JOHN: [Reading] "Did you get beat up in school, or did you do the bullying?"
MIKE: I got beat up. I got my butt kicked in school. It kind of irritates me that people as questions like that, because when have Beavis and Butt-Head gone around beating people up?
JOHN: Well, I guess anyone who ever made a cartoon or did slapstick must be a bully, according to that reasoning. I guess Chuck Jones is always running around, beating the crap out of everyone-dropping rocks on their heads.
MIKE: He was always throwing people off cliffs. That's the kind of guy he is. But B&B don't beat people up. They get their butt kicked more than they ever ... Then you had a question after that. What were we talking about? Am I more like Beavis or Butt-Head?
JOHN: You don't have to answer anything that ... unless you have an answer.
MIKE: I'm more like Ren.
JOHN: Okay. That's a good answer. [Reading] "Do you have parents?" That's a good one.
MIKE: [Laughing] Yeah, I have parents.
JOHN: Or did you appear by spontaneous generation? You just appeared in a jar one day, on the side of it, kind of dripping there?
MIKE: I grew out of a jar in Quayaquil, Ecuador, which is where I was born, actually.
JOHN: Well, do they hate you now? Are they ashamed of you? Or do you just bribe them to shut up with tons of money?
MIKE: I think they hate me a little bit less.
JOHN: Oh, that's good. Did your dad tell you when you were a kid that you should stop drawing cartoons 'cause nobody will ever give you a dime for drawing funny little men?
MIKE: No, but my mom ... see, I used to draw nice sketches of animals, and when I took a three-week cartoon class I started drawing more sloppy kind of stuff and more cartoons that a kid draws. She didn't like that.
JOHN: So you had a slick period there for a while. Kind of like Norman Rockwell at first. Then you thoroughly pooh-poohed that.
MIKE: I consider what I do a modern-day Norman Rockwellian look at America. It's an all-American kind of thing. Actually, my mom took me to a psychologist-we got on a health plan where she could take me to a psychologist for free.
JOHN: Did you ever make flipbooks?
MIKE: Yeah. There was this one...
JOHN: Were they dirty?
MIKE: No, I don't think any of them were dirty. I did do dirty drawings, but not flipbooks. Did you do dirty flipbooks?
JOHN: I still do. Actually, I used to do nasty drawings of Betty and Veronica and I lived in fear that my Dad was going to find them.
MIKE: Actually, it isn't a great story, but I went to a Catholic high school and it seemed like every time I drew something for a class project, it either got thrown away by the teacher or something. One time we were supposed to write a story and draw a picture to go with it, and I wrote this really kind of weird story about this fly that I thought was pretty cool, and I drew this really colorful, wild picture of this crazy-looking fly. The teacher, Sister Margaret, who had these really thick, Coke-bottle glasses, just took this thing I did-and I wanted it back when I was done because I wanted to hang it up in my room or something-and took a big Magic Marker and just scribbled all over it. She said I didn't know how to draw and she was going to show me how. And she just scribbled all over this thing and defaced it.
JOHN: She defaced the fly?
MIKE: She defaced my fly. And I've never been the same since.
JOHN: Let's go back to this list here and make sure I ask you all the questions that they want me to ask. [Reading] "Hey, it's pretty cool that the U.S. Senate even talked about B&B, even though that darn senator couldn't get the name right. How has all this attention affected you? Are you a snob now?" Do you snub all your old friends and everything? Make your parents kneel when you come home to visit?
MIKE: I don't return anybody's calls unless it's going to mean extra money for me. And I've completely cut off all relationships with any friends that I had before the show. And I've copped an attitude. And let's see, what else?
JOHN: Are you going to write a book? About dealing with stardom?
MIKE: Yeah. Surviving at the Top, by Mike Judge. It's Lonely at the Top. That should be the answer to that question: "It's lonely at the top." Actually, in all seriousness, I think people like us-since we're never on TV, it's the cartoon characters-none of this stuff really changes you that much. Success has not changed me.
JOHN: Do you think that has anything to do with you already being over the hill when all of this happened?
MIKE: Yeah, I think that does, actually.
JOHN: If you were 18 and this happened?
MIKE: It would probably go straight to my head. I'd probably be in the gutter completely messed up, drunk. I'd be drunk and in the gutter mumbling.
JOHN: Do you have any favorite comedians? You like the Three Stooges?
MIKE: Yeah, I like the Stooges. You know what movie I saw that I sort of discovered late was Jerry Lewis in The Nutty Professor. I really liked that.
JOHN: I love Jerry Lewis. He's God.
MIKE: I sort of became a Jerry Lewis fan. I liked him when I was a kid and I just never saw any of his movies for years.
JOHN: The only thing about Jerry Lewis movies is he makes you pay. You get five minutes of him doing the spaz and retard bit, but then you have to suffer through the pathos of 70 more minutes. Actually, I'm thinking of taking all the spaz bits and cutting them together onto one tape. Just have 90 minutes of retardation. You know why I think the Three Stooges are the greatest comedians ever? 'Cause there's no bull about them. They don't make you pay for the humor. It's up and down, but they're trying to give you as many laughs as possible in 2 minutes. They are the most honest comedians ever.
MIKE: They're not trying to do some clever heavy. It's like completely pure, they have a completely pure purpose and it's just to get laughs. I could watch a good Three Stooges reel for hours. They made me laugh when I was eight years old, and it still works now.
JOHN: How about Monty Python?
MIKE: Yeah, I'm actually a really big Monty Python fan.
JOHN: Now, little kids are counting on you here. They look up to you. They want to know what are the cool cartoons. There you go, you shou some advice to us, this cartoon magazine, you all these kids that really look up to you, tell them what cartoons to watch.
MIKE: Be looking for the new Jimmy cartoon from Spumco.
JOHN: He says at gunpoint. What cartoons did you watch as a kid? Do you still watch cartoons?
MIKE: I watched the Warner Brothers stuff, Hanna-Barbera. Iused to watch Rocky and Bullwinkle and that kind of stuff. George of the Jungle. At a pretty early age, I didn't like the Saturday-morning stuff.
JOHN: Who's your favorite director from the old cartoons?
MIKE: I guess Tex Avery. It seems like when you see Avery's name on something, it's pretty cool. And also I like the Road Runner. My dad and I used to watch the Road Runner a lot together. We kind of bonded a little bit.
JOHN: Did your dad like Foghorn Leghorn?
MIKE: Yeah. Definitely.
JOHN: Foghorn Leghorn was made for dads.
MIKE: Seems like Foghorn Leghorn was everybody's favorite Warner Brothers character. Foghorn Leghorn was cool. Actually, I got into Porky Pig sometimes. And Speedy Gonzales was pretty cool.
JOHN: Do you like cute cartoons?
MIKE: No. I really don't like stuff like MyLittle Ponys and Smurfs, although I haven't actually seen the Smurfs. I've just seen the commercials for it.
JOHN: What do you think of Disney, do you like the new stuff? Did you like Beauty and the Beast? Come on, tell the truth. This is a cool cartoon magazine.
MIKE: Beauty and the Beast seemed like it all was really brown.
JOHN: Like the color of waste products. It was all brown and yellow.
MIKE: Yeah. The whole thing was just so brown and orange and yellow, like Burger King or something. I don't think I would have liked Beauty and the Beast at any age. Aladdin had some cool scenes. It's sort of like--l don't really dislike it, I don't have a passion for it really. I'll tell you another thing while I'm ragging on this Disney stuff. All the Disney lead male characters always have this kind of John Davidson kind of look to them. They all look like the same guy, and all the females look like the same, and I think the guys are just way too big. They don't have a lot of character, but it's hard to describe what it is I don't quite like about them. They all look like the same characters.
JOHN: They are. They use the same drawings, then they trace different hairstyles on top of them. Basically.
MIKE: That's how they do it.
JOHN: No, I'm serious. Like the Little Mermaid is Mowgli from The Jungle Book with long red hair.
MIKE: Yeah, it's the exact same thing. You want to know a Disney movie I really hate? It's that one that has ... what's it called? It was made in the early '80s and it's about this dog in Manhattan.
JOHN: Oliver? The one that was supposed to be like a Ralph Bakshi movie?
MIKE: This tape I play for my kid has that on it-it's one of those Disney sing-along tapes.
JOHN: Oh, you mean when your kid's bad it's to punish her.
MIKE: I got enough Disney sing-along stuff for my daughter to last until she grows out ot it.
JOHN: Aren't you afraid of destroying her mind?
MIKE: A newspaper guy asked my uncle, "What do you think about what your nephew is doing?" One of those leading questions, like, "It's clear that your nephew has really taken the wrong path in life, what do you think about it?" My uncle said, "It could have been worse, he could have animated for Disney." Sometimes I think if I show Julia this stuff while growing up, then she'll rebel in the proper manner. She'll be cool.
JOHN: How old is she?
MIKE: She's two.
JOHN: Does she watch B&B? Do you show her tapes or anything?
MIKE: The first time we played it, she started going Huh-huh, huh-huh, huh. So I decided to turn it off for a while.
JOHN: Yeah, don't let her get too excited. Calm her down a little. Maybe you should give her a beer first or something.
MIKE: I'm going to put her on the right path.
JOHN: What are you going to force her to be when she grows up?
MIKE: I'm going to force her to go into animation.
John Kricfalusi is the creator of Ren & Stimpy and along with Mike Judge is MTVs biggest moneymaker.
Copywrite of Wild Cartoon Kingdom, Issue #3, 1994, Copied WITHOUT permission.