Have you seen the new show Creature Comforts? I'm quickly becoming a huge fan. Created by the same people who made the hilarious Wallace and Gromit shorts & features, Creature Comforts is a 1/2 hour claymation "reality show." The concept is brilliant. Aardman sent people all over the US, interviewing regular people about various topics (zoos, flying, self-image, relationships). Then, they took those "Voices of Your Fellow Americans", and created claymation animals to match them. The results are great fun: pigs who dream of flying, a hippo who complains about always being weighed by skinny girls, a penguin who complains of always being cold.
The idea is based on an original short film that Aardman created in 2003 (which you can watch online...see below). The TV show has been running in the UK for a couple seasons...this is the first time they've done an American version, with all new characters and interviews.
On the US website you can:
- Watch the original short film (this is great!)
- Read the animators' blog: Eyeballs and Fishlips (it's fun to see pictures of the *real* people behind the animal characters)
On the UK website you can click on the "Making Of" where you can learn all kinds of interesting tidbits:
- The show is unscripted and unrehearsed
- The interviewees do not know what animal they will be until the actual broadcast
- The characters/animals are created to fit the voices (not the other way around)
- The animators use between 10 and 20 different mouths for different emotions
- The animators film between 3-5 seconds of material per day
- It takes four days to film one 15 second shot!
UPDATE: Can you believe they took this off the air *already*????? This was one of the few really different, really engaging shows that I was enjoying! Sheesh. I should have known that meant it was doomed. :)
If you liked the show as much as I did, click here for a list of people at CBS to email with your comments. Boy, what a typical display of media mogul knuckleheadedness.