The Adventures of Pete and Pete was a staple for Nickelodeon in the early 90s which I guess most of us watched day after day and enjoyed. The show isn’t that long and I can’t find any information on why it was cancelled but there’s just something special about the show that stays in your mind. I loved it as a kid but looking back on it now was it really any good?
Before it was ever a show it started off as a series of shorts that are about a minute long with two specials being about 5 minutes. It’s actually somewhat hard to find these shorts and I was only able to watch about half of them. They really do feel like in the show even if only a minute long. Everyone from the show is much younger and Ellen is actually featured alongside Pete and Pete in the intro. Many of the things from the TV show like origins of stuff are actually from these shorts so its weird they didn’t keep airing them or bundled them as a special. You can also see some dialog and ideas that later became full episodes.
This isn’t a normal show by any means, it’s sort of a coming of age story as we do see the stories of big Pete deal more with growing up, he really is very young in the first season but by the third he is definitely a teenager and we see him grow alongside the rest of the cast. Young Pete is a total sociopath and outright insane so it’s kind of hard to see how anyone could not see him becoming a serial killer in the future The plots deal fairly evenly between both Pete’s though the older Pete clearly had the best stories. It doesn’t feel like a kids show nor a generic sitcom, it’s something unique.
The show does a great job at showing life as seen through a kids eye where everything seems like a big adventure and full of possibilities. This works out very well thanks to the memorable cast and most characters are very unique and have neat quirks. Ellen was always nice to have even if the relationship with Pete was always odd, I think they became a couple in like 3 episodes but every other episode ignores it. Even later additions like Nona were great, sort of like The Simpsons each supporting character felt unique.
It’s a shame we didn’t get more episodes or more from it but at least we can see it as a window to a specific time in the past. There were a few shorts with both Pete’s done for The Splat which is Nick’s retro block but they’re not really played in character which is a shame since it would’ve been awesome to have the show end with shorts just like it had started. Highly recommended, even if only for the opening theme song featuring The Polaris’ Hey Sandy.
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