Back in late 2019 and early 2020, things in life weren’t going so great for lil’ old me. However, one saving grace was a short but sweet Youtube series called “Epithet Erased”. It was a show that came from Brendan Blaber, or better known under his Youtube name “JelloApocalypse”, who created the famous “So This Is Basically” series. Which, along with his creativity and charming art style, granted him an audience back in his earlier days of Youtube. Because of his warranted success ripping on many cartoon shows in a fun way, he set out with a team of animators to create a show of his own. I don’t recall ever hesitating to watch it back when it was first announced and it seems many others did the same, as almost every episode has well over a million views! Which honestly was my biggest concern because of how GREAT the show is!
So, the show itself? Well I just told you how I felt about it. I still don’t know if it was properly appreciated due to how many people always brought up their issue with the animation. But overall, it’s a simple story that revolves around the powers of some special individuals with “Epithets”. [Side Note: I had NEVER heard of this word before this show, so big props for the creativity of that name.] Anyways, from what I understand, epithets themselves are adjectives used to describe a person’s characteristics. Dirty Daniel, Ugly Ursula, Hungry Jorge, etc. etc. And in the show, these specific words are the powers that certain people have. Our main girl for the 1st half of the show, Molly, has the epithet “Dumb” is used to numb or…*ahem* “Dumb down” noises and other things. And as you watch, the powers can range from really creative to just really funny. And I like the variety that’s present in the usefulness of their powers. Considering the rareness of even having an epithet, the chances of having a “good” one is just as slim.
Regardless, like I said, the story is relatively simple to follow. With the whole season being split into two different arcs, one following the other’s events, it’s a pretty cohesive plot involving some lovable characters. I’ll spare details to avoid spoilers and to promote watchers because the series needs support! And if you’d love to see all 6 episodes just from what I’ve described, here’s a link: Epithet Erased | EP1 – Quiet in the Museum!
First, let’s artistically speak about how the show looks.
The show’s overall look is really nice to look at, which is no surprise considering the channel this comes from! (But thank you so much to all the animators and portrait designers on staff) Locations and backgrounds are pretty well made and the little title cards in between sections of the episodes have so much personality. Character designs are top notch and imaginative.
They get really fun to look at and some of the characters have specific details that point to their abilities. A small spoiler but there’s a character with black and white striped hair, and he uses coupons as his ability. I love things like this in shows, because it shows how attentive a show’s producers and animators can be. There aren’t any problems with character designs, they all translate very well to the style the show has, considering the lack of proper animation. The animation isn’t exactly a problem but it will take some getting used to if you aren’t used to it yet. While they are mostly still poses, luckily, characters’ movement from mouths to their bodies fill in the blanks for you. There’s a top down view for some scenes that I feel take too much away from the viewing experience. They probably did this to give the animators an easier time and to get things done faster between production, but they feel much less connected than the poses of the characters. Now, there are actual animated scenes within the show, but they are saved for very important and specific finale type scenes. And I think I could live with this because it makes those scenes all the more exciting when they come up and narratively have more impact.
Now, onto my favorite part of any show, the characters!
This is one aspect that REALLY shines throughout the series. This section wasn’t hard to write at all because despite not truly watching the series for around two years, every single character’s name is burned in my head and heart with love. The voice performances really sell the characters and take the whole show to a new level. Another strong suit of Mr.Baber and his team. I will say, however, that mostly every character can be boiled down to a single adjective mostly (unrelated to their epithet, of course) but that is not too much of a bad thing. They all work so well together and characters’ other sides are displayed through parts of the show. Characters’ motives and dynamics are very clear and understandable which makes for a very fun story to watch. And adding onto that, all the characters are surprisingly pretty funny, actually. My favorite one being Percy, who is a cop with a real ass sword! She’s sweet, mindful, and overall willing to do anything to get her job done, although she can easily misread a room. She bounces off real well when she’s paired with the crime filled and cautious lovable rat child Ramsey. What seems to be a fan favorite though is the dynamic between Giovanni and Molly, considering the unlikelihood of their friendship, along with how much it shows Giovanni’s sweeter side to people he cares about.
And that’s all I’ll say about the show, because (again) I REALLY want people to watch the series. It was something that surprised me with how attached I became to the characters and there is a risk that this may be the only time it’ll be animated without proper funding. I sent a link to the show earlier but here’s a link to the Kickstarter: Epithet Erased: Prison Of Plastic! It’s how they’ll be continuing the series and support for this would mean a bunch to me! Check it out whenever you want and until next time!