Tv Review: The Shivering Truth – Ogled Inklings

Adult Swim have released all six episode of PFFR’s The Shivering Truth online now and I’ll be reviewing them over the course of the next couple of days, unless they cause my brain to shrivel and leak out through my ear and then start a new career as a window cleaner. Which is likely given the quite frankly bizarre content found within each episode, when I reviewed The Nurple Rainbow a couple of weeks ago after it briefly leaked online I described it as “Like watching a fever dream, but one which makes you laugh at the insanity of it all”, and the same applies with the rest of the episodes, if not more so.

Ogled Inklings is the third episode to be aired if you watch the series in a conventional manner and features David Cross and Jordan Peele providing some of the voices, with both putting in sterling work. As with the other episodes I’ve so far seen there’s not a conventional narrative, it leaps around from one idea to the next with not a care in the world, except that all will make you giggle and then feel slightly nauseous. The episode begins in a desert where prisoners are kept in a jail that can only afford one wall of bars which has to be lugged around whenever a prisoner tries to escape, but then after a prisoner’s head explodes another works out how to free everyone involved. Soon enough we’re getting flashbacks to the lives of various people, including a wife giving birth to “a dirty pig” (though for once with PFFR it’s not the actual animal itself but a police man) and a man who’s in hospital as he crashed his car after ogling a woman’s breasts and killed a huge amount of people. It turns out that the woman he ogled was extremely old and after insulting her she dies, the media gets hold of the story and hey, because it’s The Shivering Truth the apocalypse quickly takes place.

It plays around with an impressive amount of ideas, from the concept of escaping the prison of your mind, creating your own reality, and deciding your own fate, all of which lead to bloodshed and misery, and finally to the end of everything. It’s a downbeat take on reality, and one that suggests that due to inherent selfishness and callous behaviour everyone’s doomed, but also one I can’t argue with in the slightest. It mocks both authority and supposed free thinkers, everyone’s a target that PFFR are happy to relentlessly attack with glee.

Once again what really impresses are the huge variety of concepts and themes the show plays with during it’s short eleven minute running time, one minute we’re watching prisoners happily hanging around in their non-existent cells, the next it’s the tale of a dog who consists of only one leg and is quickly turned in to a stick after being hit by a single tyre, and that stick then maims the family who it belongs too. There’s also an old woman being treated like a dog and having her face mushed in to a disturbing mess, and then the military begging a poet to save the world, and somehow they link it all together thematically and it makes (some) sense.

As always with PFFR’s output the word play is an absolute delight as well, in one scene the narrator intones “His parents were allergic to making him happy” and shortly afterwards he comments that “Tragically the urge to conjure a better new world can turn even a decent human being in to a poet”. Almost every sentence is memorable in it’s unusual construction and creativity, and it’s a rare example of a series which benefits from watching at least three times as there’s so much to take in. It may sound like I’m over praising it but it really is groundbreaking comedy, and essential tv. So stop reading this right now and click on the link below to watch it, there isn’t a single better way to spend your time.

Alex Finch.

Related Link:
You can watch the episode on Adult Swim’s site here.
Our review of The Shivering Truth – Fowl Flow.
Our review of The Shivering Truth – Tow And Shell.
Our review of The Shivering Truth – Constadeath.
Our review of The Shivering Truth – The Magmafying Past.
Our review of The Shivering Truth – The Nurple Rainbow.

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