As another summer rolls around, adult animation fans anticipate one massive event: the premiere of another season of Netflix’s BoJack Horseman. And the opening of Raphael Bob-Waksberg’s hit comedy’s third season is just as great as you would expect.
Episode 1: Start Spreading the News
As the opener to the season, there’s little more you can ask for than in this episode. It perfectly reintroduces the cast of the show to viewers, by bringing in favourites such as Aaron Paul’s Todd and Paul F. Tompkin’s Mr. Peanutbutter alongside the eponymous horse, who has plenty to do in this episode. The writing is suitably fantastic, and conversations are as gripping and witty as ever: this is certainly one of the most quick-witted comedies currently being made, and some of the gags and in-jokes shown here just cement this, and alongside this, the plot that is started here is set to be incredibly gripping and typically dark. Overall, Start Spreading the News is a sublime opening to BoJack Horseman‘s third season.
Episode 2: The BoJack Horseman Show
This episode takes place entirely in the distant past of 2007, which really gives the show a fantastic opportunity to delve into the backstories of such memorable characters. There are some fantastic jokes sprinkled throughout to reference the time period, such as a delightfully self-aware ribbing of cookie-cutter pop songs, a clever Panic! At the Disco reference and a short The Sopranos gag that particularly stood out as a highlight. Perhaps this episode’s most remarkable achievement from a personal standpoint is that this was the episode that really got me behind Mr. Peanutbutter: previously I had something of a take-it-or-leave-it attitude towards the character, but after exploring his past – and thanks to some really funny gags – he’s now earned a place in my affection. It’s also the small things in this episode that really stand out: Todd’s side-plot – as he first experiences relations with the opposite gender – is massively interesting, and the inclusion of some fringe characters that less avid viewers may have forgotten is a spectacular tribute to the loyalty of the show’s fanbase. Another fantastic episode that is topped off by a magnificent end-credits song that completely surprised me.
Episode 3: BoJack Kills
The third episode of the series takes a completely different turn from what we’ve seen before, and goes down the path of a detective TV show, as BoJack teams up with Alison Brie’s Diane to solve the murder of a ‘family entertainer’. This was the episode that really cements that BoJack Horseman is unlike any other animated comedy currently airing: this entry, particularly as the plot unfolds, has some really dark and gruesome undertones, but it’s the way that this is handled that is really outstanding. The characters are never bogged down by the potential grittiness of the episode’s plot and remain loyal to what we’ve seen before, which can only be down to such fantastic writing. Perhaps the only complaint about this episode is that the B-plot revolving around Todd, Mr. Peanutbutter and Princess Carolyn, is a bit weak and forgettable, but this episode is nonetheless fantastic.
Overall, it’s safe to say that BoJack Horseman is back and just as good as ever, and the first three episodes of this series are really brilliant. From great characterisation, witty writing and the quintisentially dark undertones, the show hasn’t lost any of its charm or appeal, and as the overarching plot of the series is slowly established, this is shaping up to be another sublime season. Roll on the binge-watching.