Archive for Monday, April 4, 2011

‘The Problem Solverz’ goes back to the future

April 4, 2011

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I have seen the future of animation and it is “The Problem Solverz” (7:45 p.m., Cartoon Network). Actually, that’s not true at all, I just said that because you have to trot out the phrase: “I have seen the future ... ” every now and then just to have your critic license renewed. Consider it done.

“The Problem Solverz” continues the “Adult Swim” habit of marrying the most minimal and cheerfully cheap style of cartooning with mind-warping plots and cosmic conundrums. “The Problem Solverz” looks like it was cooked up in 1987 on a Commodore 64 computer. And I mean that as a compliment. Much like “Aqua Teen Hunger Force,” this cartoon consists of weird-looking archetypal characters rendered in an aggressively ugly fashion. Horace is the sensible one with a weird butchered haircut. Roba is a super-logical but fearful nerd who feels protected by dressing as a robot. Alfe is described as “half man, half Anteater and half dog.” He’s a sort of an infantile Chewbacca with an insatiable appetite for pizza.

The first problem for the “Solverz” involves a rogue roller coaster called “The Time Twister,” which sends hapless riders into advanced old age. The “Solverz” decide to board it up to prevent any additional temporal damage, but Alfe sees it as a good way of getting to yesterday to eat a cold slice of pizza all over again. He quickly shreds the fabric of time and space, filling downtown with dinosaurs, etc. You don’t have to be well-versed in any of Einstein’s theories to keep up here, but I’m sure it would help.

• Workaholic parents get a wake-up call from those they neglect most on the new series “Kidnapped by the Kids” (8 p.m., OWN).

• TCM commemorates the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the American Civil War with a month-long film festival of Civil War-themed movies running on Monday and Wednesday night throughout the month of April. Things kick off with the 1939 epic “Gone with the Wind” (7 p.m., Eastern, TCM).

• PBS continues their repeat of the 1990 documentary series “The Civil War” (7 p.m., PBS) nightly through Thursday.

Tonight’s other highlights

• The Yankees host the Twins (6 p.m., ESPN).

• A candidate falls ill as an election nears on “House” (7 p.m., Fox).

• The NCAA Basketball Championships (8 p.m., CBS) conclude.

• “Intervention” (7 p.m., A&E, TV-PG), gives way to “Relapse” (8 p.m., A&E).

• Negotiations fizzle on “The Event” (8 p.m., NBC).

• A bank robber meets a grim fate on “The Chicago Code” (8 p.m., Fox).

• The documentary “His Way” (8 p.m., HBO) profiles producer Jerry Weintraub a power broker in Hollywood and Washington.

• Josh needs a defender on the season finale of “Harry’s Law” (9 p.m., NBC).

• A half-baked murder victim on “Castle” (9 p.m., ABC).

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