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Friday, July 31, 2015

Troll: Rise of Harry Potter Animated Series Coming

Earlier this week it was announced that plans are currently in the works for Troll animated series.  I don’t really know what kind of people read this blog but I’m betting that was probably a strange announcement regardless of your background because there is nothing about this animated series that makes sense.  In fact Troll the animated series actually goes out of its way to defy all rational logic as part of the universe’s ongoing effort to troll rationalists everywhere (pun completely intended.)  Let’s take a guided tour through trolls, animated series, and why this announcement makes no God damn sense. 

Some of the more animation savvy in the audience might remember there was actually a Trolls movie set to come out this year.  The film was intended to be an adaptation of the Charles Dam Troll Dolls that were highly popular in the ‘60s and ‘90s and remain a persistent cubicle novelty to this day.  That particular film fell through despite the success of things like Chipmunks, Muppets, and Smurfs as “little children’s toy” film properties.  You might then conclude this upcoming show is an animated adaptation of the Troll dolls.  That wouldn’t be too far afield as the trolls have had 4 previous animated series but with the high quality nature of a lot of kids shows nowadays studios aren’t going in for toy TV as much as they used to.  The only exclusion to the Lego shows and even then only Lego Ninjago has really proved to be lastingly popular so no, this is not an adaptation of the troll dolls.  

On the other hand maybe you heard that the subtitle of the animated series involves Harry Potter, because it does that’s correct.  From there it’d be a perfectly understandable and logical conclusion that this is stab by Warner Brothers at a Harry Potter show in an attempts to prolong the brand’s life in case Wondrous Beasts and Where to Find Them doesn’t make bank.   WB has a habit of obsessing over its three cash cows of Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and Batman, that was even part of their split with Legendary last year, so it’s not too off the mark that they’d decide to expand their workhorse money makers into television.  However, it would be off the mark enough to be wrong because despite being called Troll: The Rise of Harry Potter Jr. the animated series will have nothing to do with the popular film series.  Really though, that’s not too surprising as animated adaptations of popular films haven’t really been a thing since the ‘90s, excluding the very recent Guardians of the Galaxy series. 

By now we’re kind of running out of options, but given that this is the Internet there’s a decent chance you know about Troll 2, the best worst movie ever.  Incidentally if you’re unfamiliar with Troll 2, I’m not just saying it’s the best worst movie, that’s the actual name of the documentary made about the film in 2009.  Troll 2 has been a major favorite of the so bad it’s good genre since the community that surrounds those movies first crystallized on the Internet in the late 2000s.  Given the recent success of a lot of other ironic anti-hits like Birdemic 2 or the entire Sharknado catalog the idea of a Troll 2 follow up makes a good deal of sense, especially because director Claudio Forgaso has been teasing a Troll 2 sequel since the film’s latter day success.  However, despite all that sense you’d still be wrong, but we’re finally getting warmer.  

What Troll: The Rise of Harry Potter Jr. actually is, is an animated follow up to the forgotten ‘80s kid friendly horror film Troll.  Troll was one of the many little monsters films that popped up in the wake of 1984’s Gremlins, stuff like Ghoulies, Critters, Munchies, and arguably Child’s Play.  The plot revolves around a little troll monster possessing a young girl in order to convert the tenants of a San Francisco apartment building into plant life that spawns a mystic forest full of more trolls.  Even though the film is rightfully forgotten it’s actually got a lot of weird ties to things that would be big later.  Troll 2 was an unofficial sequel that basically ended up with a similar plot (little monster turns people into plants,) Julia Louis Dreyfus appeared in the film in her first film role ever, and the main character of the film was named Harry Potter.
I have no idea why the owners of Troll picked this moment in time to resurrect the franchise(?) because it honestly makes the least amount of sense.  The Harry Potter phenomena has decidedly cooled off despite the remaining dedicated fans, the Troll 2 fervor moved on to other terrible films, there’s really nothing about right now that would be conducive for a Troll continuation.  This is something that should’ve happened last decade or at the very least in the early 2010s, not midway through the decade.  Regardless Troll: The Rise of Harry Potter Jr. is still a thing that is coming, here’s hoping it’s more than just a late attempt to cash in on the name and the moderate popularity of purposely bad ironic hits. 

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