Pinky and the Brain (1995–1998)
7.8/10
70
1 user

All You Need Is Narf/Pinky's Plan 

In "All You Need is Narf" it is the 1960s and Pinky becomes a guru. Pinky unites a member of the most popular band of the day, a parody of the Beatles, to his true love causing the band to ... See full summary »

Director:

Kirk Tingblad
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Cast

Episode credited cast:
Maurice LaMarche ... The Brain (voice)
Rob Paulsen ... Pinky (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jeff Bennett ... Jim / Castro type (voice)
Jess Harnell ... Fred (voice)
Tress MacNeille ... First Lady / Yoko Ono type (voice)
Frank Welker ... The President (voice)
Billy West ... Indian Man (voice)
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Storyline

In "All You Need is Narf" it is the 1960s and Pinky becomes a guru. Pinky unites a member of the most popular band of the day, a parody of the Beatles, to his true love causing the band to split up. In Pinky's plan, it is Brain's birthday and he realizes he is getting old so he takes the day off. Pinky plans on throwing Brain a party at "Chuncky Cheeses" with all the world leaders. Pinky's gift to Brain, the World, but Brain in his selfishness manages to screw it up. Written by Benjamin Wirtz

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Certificate:

TV-Y
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Details

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 September 1997 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Crazy Credits

Ototoxic: Having a bad effect on hearing organs See more »

Connections

References Seinfeld (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

Slave March
(uncredited)
Music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
[Plays in "Pinky's Plan"]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Uniting bands and throwing parties
15 November 2018 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Love animation to bits. It was a big part of my life as a child, especially Disney, Looney Tunes, Hanna Barbera and Tom and Jerry (with tastes broadening further getting older with Pixar, Studio Ghibli and some of the more mature animations out there), and still love it to this day as a young adult whether it's film, television or cartoons. Actually appreciate it even more now, with more knowledge of the different animation styles, directors, studios and what work went into them.

'Animaniacs' always was one of my favourite animated shows. So is its spin off 'Pinky and the Brain', which is on the same level and almost surpasses it. Found it brilliant, extremely well made, cute at times and very funny and actually hilarious frequently as a child. Still think all of that as an adult, and even more so with more knowledge of animation and understanding the humour more. 'Pinky and the Brain' is like 'Animaniacs', it has something for everybody and children and adults alike will love it, it is so much more than "just another kiddie show" and should never be dismissed as such.

Another episode divided into two segments, it is very good, if just missing the extra something of the very best episodes. It does show the show's high quality and indicative at how well things settled so soon and kept going stronger and stronger and quickly hitting its stride. As said a number of times already, lots of shows take a while to find their feet but 'Pinky and the Brain' found it straight away and generally was very consistent and the consistency generally, if slightly bumping compared to even better episodes, shows here.

What stops the episode from being one of my favourites is that the supporting characters are not particularly distinctive or memorable enough and one is likely not to like how Brain behaves at the end of "Pinky's Party", even for him it was mean.

The animation quality is terrific. The setting is an atmospheric one, credit is due making a quite confined setting interesting which this, and the whole of 'Pinky and the Brain' for that matter, does really well. The characters designs are smooth and not stiff at all, the backgrounds are very rich in detail and the colours are a mix of vibrant and atmospheric (having been throwing this word a lot recently but can't help it).

Similarly great is the music. The scoring is dynamic and cleverly composed, adding to the actions, expressions and gestures and doing what good music scores in animation should do in enhancing them. Then there is the theme tune, which is hard not to forget.

'Pinky and the Brain' throughout its too short run was always superbly written. It is such smart writing, at its worst it's very funny, at its best it's not just hilarious but riotous. Both segments, in equal measure (especially in "All You Need is Narf"), are full of zaniness, wit and surprising intelligence and has references that will delight adults especially as they are more likely to get them, while having some educational parts for children. The exchanges between Pinky and Brain are masterpieces of how their personalities and way of speaking contrast so well with each other.

While somewhat formulaic (all the stories in 'Pinky and the Brain' are, but in structure, the concept was actually very original), this and all the show's episodes is a not so common example of formulaic not being a bad thing and not mattering at all, because of the cleverness, creativity and idea variety of the writing and storytelling which are nowhere near as silly as one would think looking at the premise. One worries about repetition, no worries are needed because there is variety to stop that from happening. Some of the content here is outrageous, but endearingly so (the outrageousness and creativity of Brain's plan was part of the show's charm and intentional, as is not being surprised by the outcome of Brain's plans), but it is from start to finish very engaging, lively in pace, clever and always structured coherently, being not being too complicated for children and not too simplistic for adults.

Other than the writing, especially good are the characters. Pinky and Brain were two of the best characters on 'Animaniacs', Brain stole the show whenever he appeared, and more than deserved their own show. For me they are even more interesting and defined and one can see that here already. It is hard not to endear to Pinky and his inane comments and actions, he is very stupid and one can see why he frustrates Brain. But he is one of the finest examples of stupid not falling into the trap of being obnoxious, a trap often fallen into, Pinky instead is very funny and often hysterically so and simply adorable, one has to admire his spirit and perseverance. One here though sees a different side to Pinky where he comes over as resourceful and well-intentioned, it was lovely too to have more focus on him and both segments waste no opportunity to give more to him than one usually sees, which is truly admirable.

Brain (who has more to do in the episode) is slightly more interesting, he is the infinitely smarter one of the two, a genius in fact, although also the meaner and more intricate one, a very large contrast. Somehow though he is still very lovable, it is impossible not to fall in love with his scheme here and how he goes about it, nor is it impossible not to love his deadpan personality and dark sarcasm. His perseverance is also admirable and although his ego is bigger than usual at this stage of the show it doesn't make him unlikeable generally. The end of "Pinky's Plan" is somewhat of an exception though. The two have such compellingly real personalities and one can see here even early on some development and there is more to them under the surface. The chemistry between the two is just a delight, fun and sometimes antagonistic but there is more substance to it than that, being essentially the heart of the episode, every episode in fact, and the show it was important for it to work and it has always been one of the greatest assets. Like with Pinky's character, one sees a different side to their relationship, where one sees how much Pinky cares for Brain that he would do a lovely gesture for him regardless of how he tends to be treated.

Rob Paulsen and Maurice LaMarche, two of the best and most prolific voice actors around that time and in the voice acting business overall, are flawless providing Pinky and Brain's voices. LaMarche in particular. They sound like they were having a lot of fun and give Pinky and Brain so much life and also surprising depth, their voices suiting the characters and their personalities perfectly. If they recorded the voices together, one can really feel the bond between them.

Summarising, very good though not one of the best episodes. 8/10 Bethany Cox


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