Thursday, June 20, 2013

Throwback Thursday: As Told By Ginger

Someone once told me the grass is much
greener, on the other side.
The turn of the century brought us a lot of things: President Bush, an end to the Y2K scare, and As Told By Ginger, one of the most profound yet often forgotten Nicktoons in history. For those of you who don't remember or were too busy watching Invader Zim or some other shit, As Told By Ginger followed the life of Ginger Foutley, an awkward young teen named for the ugly color of her hair. Ginger has two friends, the gossipy and over-dramatic Dodie Bishop and the shy and hyper-allergenic Macie Lightfoot. Despite their best efforts, these girls were invisible at Lucky Jr. High.

Work it! I need a glass of water.
But for whatever reason, the most popular girl in school, Courtney Gripling, took a liking to Firecrotch Foutley, giving her an instant social boost. The show also focused on the escapades of Ginger's disgusting younger brother, Carl, who kept petrified eye balls in jars. But that's the part of the show I don't miss.

So what makes As Told By Ginger worthy of such a retrospective on this beautiful Thursday? Well, for starters, it's one of the few animated shows in which the characters CHANGE CLOTHES. I cannot begin to tell you how fascinating I thought that was. True, most of the clothes were disgusting, but at least it wasn't like Hey Arnold! where you'd have to wonder episode after episode if he was wearing a kilt or just a really long shirt.

Who could forget this classic bear print skirt?
But the heart of the show was its storylines. After all, Ginger gets arrested for stealing a sign in the very first episode, and that's something you don't see every day on Nickelodeon! And remember the time Ginger first shaved her Frizzy Lizzies, or when Courtney got caught stuffing her bra? What about the three-part summer camp saga, or when Darren finally got his headgear off? Then, of course, there's my personal favorite episode, "Wicked Game", in which Courtney's right-hand gals, Miranda and Mipsy, successfully turn everyone against Ginger.

Unfortunately, As Told By Ginger waned in popularity, and most of the final episodes, which were set in high school, were never broadcast in the states. (Thankfully, they've since turned up on YouTube). Sure, the positioning of the characters' mouths made it look like they lived on a toxic waste dump. And yeah, it was really hard to rally for a protagonist who complained as often as she didn't straighten her hair. But this show is still a fucking classic.

So this truly is a Throwback Thursday to a beloved show, one from the not-so-distant past but still overlooked in the grand scheme of things. To give you a nostalgic taste of what we all miss, here's one of the best musical performances ever.


Madeleine Wills said...

you make a really good point -- why WERE their mouths like that?

Taylor Tanton said...

The animation in this is so sad, however Little Seal Girl will always be the jam of my childhood!

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