Remember when we wanted a sequel to Monsters Inc. and Disney was all like, “Okay, here’s the prequel that you didn’t ask for,” and we were all, like, “Okay, well, this isn’t what we wanted but it’s okay.” Later on, Disney was all like, “Hey, I seem to remember a long time ago you asked for a sequel to Monsters, Inc.” and we were all like, “Yes, yes!” and Disney said, “How about an entire sequel series?” And we were like, “Yes, yes, yes!” Disney said, “Billy Crystal and John Goodman are coming back!” and we were all like, “Yes, yes, yes, yes!” Finally, Disney says, “But it’s not about Sully and Mike, it’s about this new guy and Sully and Mike are barely in it at all.”
And we were like, “Do what now?”
And so, we have Monsters at Work, a Disney Plus series that picks up right after Monsters Inc and features the monster society being forced to suddenly realign to a new power source, the power of laughter. This is where a new monster character, Tylor Tuskman, comes in. He’s freshly graduated from Monster University and is primed and ready to be a scarer, but when he arrives at the company, he’s horrified to learn that scarers aren’t needed anymore and his bright, shining career that was waiting for him have been dashed and now, he’s been reassigned to the MIFT, the Monsters Inc Maintenance Team.
Yes, I know… I thought it said “MILF” as well.
So, that’s the premise of this series.
First of all, this is a series aimed for kids. Young kids. Annoyingly easy to entertain kids and, from the first episode, the bar is set relatively low. Monsters at Work is another one of those productions that seems to thing that awkwardness equals funny and that “quirky” is a personality trait good enough for three or four characters in the cast when, in reality, the result is just awkward and quirky and not in a good way.
This is a television series for people who think that mayonnaise is too spicy. From the first act of the first episode, you get the feeling that they were seriously going to base the entire show on a society undergoing a drastic change which sounded amazing, but it quickly devolves into a mediocre and safe workplace sitcom. If this were done in live action, it would have been a perfect fit between Good Luck Charlie and Dog with a Blog. The humor is just that artificial.
The animation, to its credit, looks on par with the original Monsters movies, even if some of the primary character sport slicked back fur that, I’m assuming, is easier and quicker to render. Tylor also seems to have had his facial animations copied and pasted from Sully, so that was a little jarring as well.
Overall, the bar has been set low, so this initial disappointment, as much as it stung, will probably not repeat itself should I decide to watch more… which is not a certainty as I am decidedly out of the demographic for this series.
It’s just so disappointing that we’re probably never going to get a proper sequel to Monsters Inc. There’s just so much potential in the idea… potential that is on the opposite hemisphere from whatever this series wants to be.