Sunday, August 27, 2017

Great Moments in Springsteen Television History - Sealab 2021

After last month's 30 Day Challenge, I was pretty burnt out on Springsteen.  Even the announcement of Springsteen on Broadway didn't inspire me to get back on my Springsteen fanblog game. (Mainly because this ticketing system seems doomed to fail.  Don't say I didn't warn you! Don't you dare say it!)

So, what have I been doing with my summer?  Re-watching Sealab 2021.  A cartoon that has somewhat been forgotten over the last 15 years, Sealab 2021 was one of Adult Swim's first original shows, along with Aqua Teen Hunger Force and The Brak Show.  It was created by Adam Reed, who would go on to greater success with the hit show Archer.  However, those early Adult Swim years left a strong impression on many people around my age, as the shows introduced many of us to the strange, experimental comedy that can be done with almost no budget.

When re-watching any show from your past, it'll be impossible to escape the nostalgia.  Even though I'm watching these Sealabs as I'm getting ready for work, I'm still transported to being a 17-year-old staying up disturbingly late on Sunday nights to get a glimpse of this bizarro show.   There are tons of quotes that instantly come rushing back, though I haven't thought about them in over a decade.  When I saw the above clip, I was shocked by how clearly I remembered it, yet can't believe I haven't written about it on this blog before.

In this episode, the Sealab gang is trapped in a closet.  That's all you really know.  And, Captain Murphy (voiced by the late, great Harry Goz) fights back against a subordinate trying to give him orders, asking if Bruce Springsteen should find a new nickname.  Unfortunately, this was met with blank stares, as the crew doesn't know who Springsteen is.

This episode aired April 7, 2002, so just a bit before The Rising was released.  So, perhaps it was conceivable that in 19 years, people would forget who Springsteen was.  Fortunately, Sealab's prediction was wrong - given his sustained popularity in the 21st century, I doubt a Springsteen reference will fly over anyone's head in four years.