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Minnesota's creature comforts

Posted at 12:46 PM on June 4, 2007 by Euan Kerr (1 Comments)

I don't watch much TV, at least not deliberately. The Kerr TV set is usually just a vehicle for delivering the signal from the DVD.

I must admit I am tempted by a CBS offering tonight however. "Creature Comforts" is the US iteration of a project which brought Nick Park, the animator-extraordinaire behind "Wallace and Gromit" amongst many other things to the attention of the larger world.

The original short film, which won Park the Best Animated Short Film Oscar in 1991, used snippets of interviews from ordinary British people talking about life, and put them into mouths of zoo animals through the magic of claymation.

The new show does the same thing with voices from around the US, only this time the animals are out and about in the world. Thus a hairdresser talking about the satisfaction of seeing a customers reaction to a job well done takes a little twist when it comes out of the mouth of a chimpanzee grooming another chimp, then handing her an old hub-cap so she can enjoy the result.

Much of the humor comes from the little details in the background and foreground, such as the reindeer talking about what she does to convince her boss she is doing a good job, even as Santa is hanging from his sleigh by one hand as it swings from a nearby phone line.

Apparently several people from northern Minnesota lent their voices to the project. The Duluth News Tribune reports the folks answered lots of questions about their lives and now will see what Aardman Animations have done with them. At least one couple know their voices have been added to a pair of flies, which must be a surreal experience.

You can see examples of the series at "Eyeballs and Fishlips" the Aardman production blog. The series is already getting rave reviews.

Comments (1)

If you'd like to know more about "Creature Comforts," please check out my audio interview with executive producer Kit Boss: here. He was previously a writer and producer for seven seasons on "King of the Hill."

Posted by Bob Andelman | June 5, 2007 1:06 PM

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