Comparison and contrasting of postmodern TV series

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The TV series are mainly established to give specific communication to the target audience. In most cases, the series have varied audience for example children, teenagers and adults depending on the message to be communicated. Owing to this, there are themes incorporated during an action of these episodes that intends to be delivered and understood by the audience. This field has attracted many professionals due to the increasing demand for media consumption locally and internationally. Although different actors have varied opinions and themes while creating the visual series, there are some similarities observed in series produced by different actors at different times. On the other hand, there are variations in TV series that can be noted regardless of their common agenda. This essay evaluates two postmodern TV comedy series by comparing and contrasting “Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law” with “Sealab 2021” focusing explicitly to three episodes in each case as well as analyzing their application for the best in postmodern culture.

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Similarities between the two series

Both TV series are about comedy and fun. Their establishment has mainly been based to create humour and laughter among the viewers. Owing to this, their performance has involved the use of cartoons during the actions. It is common for actors to associate the use of cartoons to establish humorous moments for attracting an audience which is a common strategy for eliminating boredom among viewers and thus it creates the necessary continuous laughter that makes the shows interesting. The different episodes shown in both TV series are characterized by the use of cartoons as a way of making jokes and making it lively among viewers.

The two series have intensified the use of myths. Under normal circumstances, what is watched can either be real or fictional. An airing of the past or present happenings like the president addressing congress members and events of graduation or wedding are some of the examples representing real-life occurrences. However, in films, there is a common characteristic of applying imagination of events that can happen and joining them in parts to represent or mimic something that has the possibility of happening in reality/practically or through imagination. In the present case, both series have relied on fictional events to trigger the power of imagination among viewers. For example, considering episode one in season five of the Sealab 2021 shows that sealab was built on the burial ground of ancient India and it has started sinking to the floor of the ocean. Essentially, this is not the reality of life but rather fiction that is generated through imagination and presented to viewers. This compares well with the performance in the different episodes of Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law regarding the supernatural ability for fighting crimes. As the film indicates, the actors have deliberately used supervillains and superheroes to create an image of how extreme human powers and characteristics can be as well as how the extent to which prosecutors can move in convicting offenders of the law.

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The two cases have been established on the basis of animation. This implies that the overall output displayed has less to do with life’s reality. In animation, there are generally impossibilities that are made possible. This ranges from wide occasions for example by animals talking to each other, animals conversing with human beings, trees moving and vehicles responding to questions among other examples. In the present case, both TV series have mainly been formed on the basis of animating all the characters. For instance, in the Sealab 2021, the entire installation made for presenting the series is seen to be destroyed towards the end of episodes while its crew members are killed regularly through horrible means but essentially they reappear in the next episode. In the process of different events during this series, the aspect of animation is evident and continuous without which the entire series would not have brought out the entire meaning or become interesting. Similarly, the Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law has relied entirely on animations across all the episodes. For example, the use of original human voices during cast that includes Gary Cole acting as Harvey and Stephen Colbert as Phil Seben and reflection of the entire courtroom cases involving the plaintiff and defendant has been depicted through animation to give the true meaning of the series. Basically, the use of animation has become more popular as the technological advances are being made and adopted.

The use of attractive features among viewers is common and comparable for the two series. Normally, there are varied intentions of casting any series such as communicating the intended information or theme, teaching valuable/important lessons through action and attracting the target audience to make series interesting for viewing. Among the features include the use of sequential narrative during conversations and orderly in the flow of the plot. Normally, for both series regardless of the episode, one event is leading to the other and this enables the viewers to follow what is going on keenly. Disorderly can create confusion and make the series uninteresting but in the present case studies, there is a nice plotting allowing the viewer to have the best experience, creating and leaving a feeling of suspense which leads to curiosity among viewers to gain more interest in watching the subsequent episodes. Normally, this is a common tactic used by plotters in both cases to enhance the aspect of a mentally holding captive of their viewers to ensure they generate enough curiosity for making the audience to watch the next episode. By doing this, they increase the average number of viewers as well as having increased the sales/income generation.

The differences of series

The two series differ in some aspects. The aspect of the theme has been presented differently in both series. For example, the Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law has mainly focused on the necessity of having uniformity in adherence to the rules and regulations as one of the main agendas presented. The presentation of different personalities in the plot through attorney general, judges, plaintiff and defendants represent the typical setup of people surrounding the corridors of justice. During cases, it is characterized by the accusation of one party against the other and the overall decision is made to provide necessary justice to the oppressed/offended. In the present case, this may invoke the sense of practising fairness among viewers through making efforts to avoid discrimination. In addition, the message of seeking justice through the legal means has been shown thus suggesting there are available mechanisms of reporting cases when one has been offended rather than keeping quiet or taking actions personally. On the other hand, the theme of the Sealab 2021 differs by revealing the power of innovation and technology application as the series theme. In this case, various aspects of technological advances such as the use of helicopters in the plot as well as using crazy ideas of getting to the bottom of the ocean reveal the high level of innovation and imagination to the viewers. In addition, the ideas of space exploration during the drama professionalism shown in navigation to reach communist Russia reflect the extent of innovation and efficient application of technological advancements. Furthermore, the in the plot, the engagement of helicopter has also been accompanied by its explosion which is facilitated by the power of innovation and mission of terminating the helicopter journeys and flying objects achieved. Essentially, it can be viewed with the approach of revealing to the audience that there is no limit to what one can pursue and achieve in life when the right determination is accompanied by innovative ideas.

The Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law has not focused on the aspect of romance in the episodes presented. The attraction between opposite genders is among the most notable key features when presented in the series but in the present case, this has not been given that attention in the plot. Owing to this, the actors have simply acted without consideration of the affection among the viewers. This, however, does not mean that it is irrelevant or invaluable but significant to be noted because where other major themes are presented and love matters presented are normally noted even if they are not the main subject theme. On the contrary, it can be argued that the Sealab 2021 has revealed some aspects of love and affection in the plot. For example, the case where Debbie intends to go for a vacation with her boyfriend Quinn but Debbie is hinted by Marko that Quinn is with a hooker causing chain reactions. In addition, there is the action of Lana crashing on Archer for in a romantic way and therefore proposing the idea of having a vacation and spend time together.

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In the overall plot, both series differ in the aspect of what their presentation is revolving about. For example, the Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law can be said to be dominated by the presentation showing maintenance of order and adherence or respect to existing legal mechanisms. It is characterized by a plot representing legal aspects of life and the professionals involved along that career. However, on the contrary, the Sealab 2021 presentation is characterized by adventure and social events. This is through most of the missions involved in the plot indicates adventuring and making new discoveries on earth, space and underwater.

The decision of the most postmodern series

Based on the analysis of both as well as theory learnt, it can be concluded that Sealab 2021 represents the most postmodern series compared to Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law. This is because its plots are more adventurers especially in the aspect of earth, undersea and space exploration. This signifies the possibilities of future innovations in the postmodern era.

Did you like this sample?
  1. Kurland, Daniel “When Sealab 2021 devoted nearly an entire episode to a single joke” 2016. Retrieved from
  2. Onyett, Charles “E3 2007: Harvey Birdman preview” 2007. Retrieved from
  3. Matheson J and Knox C, retrieved from
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