Whether it's lovelorn rats, gender-questioning pigeons or aging bedbugs in the midst of a midlife crisis, the awkward small talk, moral ambiguity and existential woes of non-human urbanites prove startlingly similar to our own.
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 Phil / ... (20 episodes, 2016-2017)
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 Mike / ... (20 episodes, 2016-2017)
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Whether it's lovelorn rats, gender-questioning pigeons or aging bedbugs in the midst of a midlife crisis, the awkward small talk, moral ambiguity and existential woes of non-human urbanites prove startlingly similar to our own.

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Unexpected tales of urban life.

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Animation | Comedy

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5 February 2016 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Állatok  »

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Trivia

The animals all can speak clean English, whereas the humans seemingly speak in unintelligible grunts and moans. See more »

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Referenced in Tosh.0: Pee Lady (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Concept meets execution well, and economically, but both are flawed by design.
21 February 2016 | by See all my reviews

"Animals" is a show that I can see those less keen on understatement and subtlety being confused and angered by, and try-hard critics taking easy punches at, but don't be fooled, what you have here is a nice, smooth stone, even if it's in a bed of jagged rocks.

The animation budget of three pennies and a moldy piece of bread is initially off-putting, but it serves its purpose, as with shows like this and Bojack Horseman, the main reason it's even in animation to begin with has to do with something in the overall concept being something that would just be too ugly or downright offensive to look at if it were live action. If this were live action what would it be? Best case scenario would be the actors wearing costumes while in meticulously built sets, both of which cost more money than the wages of a small team of animators. So instead of going that route or the route of making a high budget, highly animated series, with lots of pomp and flash, tightening all the Animation enthusiasts pants, it went with the more sensible and budget-conscious route, knowing that it would still be successful on a technical level, and read well visually.

This show knows that everything in it needs to ride on the dialogue, because HBO doesn't give a *poo* about animation, and usually kills off low-rated comedies after only a couple seasons. And that's what it does right. The characters in this are easily relatable, animal characters, in easily relatable, human situations. I AM PHIL. I KNOW FINK, AND I *frigging* HATE FINK. And these characters, in the hands of writers who know just what makes everyday life so laughable, and what makes peering into everyday life through the eyes of an animal remind you how different we really aren't. We all make mistakes. We're all *frigging* idiots. But even still, we try every day to be better. Or we don't. Sometimes we don't want to be better, so we just try something different. The only difference is that when an animal like a pigeon makes a mistake, it's likely to cost him his life.

Now this, in and of itself isn't terribly difficult to write, just look around you and give it your take. That's the first lesson in writing. Its ceiling for hilarity also isn't exactly high, and a lot of things that make us human don't make for very highbrow entertainment: everybody poops, everybody has sex, everybody eats food, and everybody dies. So it does lose some points there, if only for being unoriginal in a narrative style which inherently makes everything seem unoriginal.

But that said, this kind of narrative still needs to exist in some form in television, and if it didn't, then TV would just be a cold, emotionally distant box with laughing and colorful bright lights. And if something needs to fill that space, then I'd still take this over the tired and uninspired likes of modern "Simpsons", "Family Guy/American Dad/The Cleveland Show", and whatever Comedy Central is trying to push to us this season (at time of writing, "Moonbeam City" comes to mind)

In summation, "Animals" knows exactly what it is trying to be, so it pulls out all the stops and goes for broke on a channel where if you use too many dimes, you'll be dropped like a bunch of nickles right on your pennies. That said, it would make a nice quarterly comic, even if nobody would ever notice it. And I'd pay a dollar for that.


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