Ahead of next week's announcements of the newest shows headed for broadcast television, Cartoon Network's Adult Swim has announced its own programming schedule for the 2013-2014 season. And it's eclectic, to say the least, mixing new work from The Boondocks creator Aaron McGruder and Community's Dan Harmon with a show that teams Mike Tyson up with a pigeon to solve mysteries. No, really.
Adult Swim has long been quietly dominating basic cable television; last year saw its highest ratings for adults and males in the 18-24, 18-34 and 18-49 demographic and for the last eight years, it's been the #1 basic cable channel for young adults, thanks to shows like Robot Chicken, The Boondocks, Children's Hospital and, of course, The Venture Bros. (All of which will return for the new season).
Presumably, it's this success that has fueled the unusual nature of some of the new shows being added to the channel for next season, which include a fake Canadian version of Entertainment Tonight called Hot Package, Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell (a series about an associate demon trying to climb the corporate ladder in Hell from the creators of Aqua Teen Hunger Force and Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law) and, most surreally of all, Mike Tyson Mysteries, which is officially explained thusly:
In the new animated comedy series Mike Tyson Mysteries, Mike Tyson is taking the fight from the boxing ring to the streets... by solving mysteries! Armed with a magical tattoo on his face and a trusty associate by his side — a talking pigeon — if you have a problem that needs solving, Iron Mike is in your corner. The series incorporates live-action appearances featuring Mighty Mike himself, and the gloves come off as the former heavyweight champ and his fowl-mouthed partner gear up for weekly adventures as they put unsolved mysteries — like how to defeat a super computer at chess or why a famous author/werewolf can’t finish his novel — down for the count.
So, yeah. That's a thing.
For fans of existing Adult Swim shows, there's more good news. Metalocalpyse returns with a one hour rock opera special from series creator Brendon Small, complete with an all-new, original heavy metal score, and Robot Chicken gets a second DC Comics Special in 2014 (That show's co-creator Matthew Senreich is also behind Ubermansion, a new pilot about six superheroes living together, co-written by Marvel Comics creator Zeb Wells). Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim are also back, in Tim & Eric's Bedtime Stories: Zach's Haunted House, a special Halloween episode starring Zach Galifianakis, and The Boondocks' Aaron McGruder has not one but two new live-action untitled pilots due to air during the year.
Of course, what might be of most interest to many on the network next year is Rick and Morty, which might as well have the title "What Dan Harmon did after Community." Co-created with Justin Roiland, it’s an animated series about "a genius inventor and his less than genius grandson, and the journeys in life they share." Vague enough to not really explain what the show will be like, but interesting enough to make you curious, it's going to be a long wait until this half-hour comedy debuts.
If there's one thing unifying all of the Adult Swim offerings for the next year, it’s the channel's continued devotion to the unusual and unexpected. If that's what’s made it so successful for almost a decade now perhaps it’s time for other networks to sit up and take notice.
fixed the cut... also i might watch "your pretty face is going to hell," how about you?