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Magic Rocks from (Muppet) Hell

A smorgasbord of miss or cringe humor where the creators seem self-aware at the ridiculousness that is “Magic Rocks from Hell.” If you’re a fan of reference or old pop culture humor, you may like this. Those looking for a more nuanced comedy with a story, might want to stick with a less bombastic story. For a comedy, I think maybe I laughed once throughout the five episode series. It was a WTF kind of laugh at an overtly sexual alien with some out-of-date and bonkers lingo regarding intercourse. Muppet humor is perhaps the most descriptive word to use when discussing this audio drama mini-series.

That One Muppet Song

The opening theme song sets the tone well with a generic fart sound effect capping off a simple song that sounds like it belongs in a show where puppets do a tribute to the “Mana Mana” song from the Muppet show. The theme plays each episode and is the second most engaging thing about this five episode series, though it takes a while to grow on you.

Music aside, the show has other similarities with the Muppets. The voices of the two main characters are both distinctive and, at the same time, typical of an off-the-walls comedy.

Role Reversals and Caricatures

By episode two, the story does more with its bonkers plot through role reversals. When an audience hears the stereotypical Marilyn Monroe blonde voice, they tend to be more focused on it than what is said. They dismiss it as being unintelligent and sometimes overly sexual. At least that’s how it was for me the first time through with this story. What she says is also important and, in this particular instance, has more character depth than the two main ones. One of them is a walking caricature of someone who sounds like Lennie from “Of Mice and Men.” Picture the abdominal snow man from Looney Tunes.

The mob-sounding casino boss doesn’t have anything separating him from any other counterparts in fiction either. The Beatles cameo feels underwhelming, despite them being bouncers for the casino owner. While not a real vocal appearance from the British pop/rock band, the joke goes back to the well too often — more so than being a recurring bit.

For those wondering, the people who put this together also did the adaptation of the B-Horror film, Wasp Women. While I don’t want to pigeon hole them as the B-Movie people, there’s a drop in the humor for this particular series. Take a look at an interview I did with the artistic director Daniel Azarian and actress Tara Langella shortly after their premiere of Wasp Women.

7/10 Stars