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‘Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K.’ Is the Demented, R-Rated Disney Superhero Epic You Didn’t Know You Needed

Courtesy of Marvel/HuluWith WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Marvel has now expanded its cinematic universe to Disney+. That more or less spells doom for any of its other small-screen efforts that weren’t integrated into its larger ongoing superhero narrative—be it ABC’s Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and Agent Carter, or Netflix’s Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and Luke Cage—and suggests that going forward, just about everything it produces will operate under one interconnected, all-enveloping Marvel umbrella. Thus, Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K., a stop-motion animated series premiering May 21 on Hulu, is a stand-alone venture that feels behind the eight ball even before its premiere—a situation that’s too bad, given that it’s a bizarre, rollicking affair which proves that the entertainment juggernaut’s properties are fit for many different types of idiosyncratic adaptations.“It’s idiotic to put a mental condom on the horse penis that is my mind,” proclaims M.O.D.O.K. (Patton Oswalt) in an early episode of Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K., thereby confirming that this isn’t your usual PG-13 Marvel endeavor. Created by Oswalt and Jordan Blum, it tells the story of M.O.D.O.K. (short for Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing), a giant-headed, small-bodied villain who flies around in a hover chair, and who dreams of conquering the world—and murdering the Avengers—and establishing a utopia over which he’ll rule. He’s your typical maniacal narcissistic wannabe-authoritarian, a crazed lunatic with a Napoleon complex who loathes a world that doesn’t respect him, and fumes over his constant failure—thanks to cocky Iron Man (Jon Hamm) and company—to achieve his dreams.The hook of Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K.’s is that it’s conceived as a sitcom-y saga about M.O.D.O.K.’s life, with family and work problems receiving equal attention. M.O.D.O.K. is married to aspiring self-help guru Jodie (Aimee Garcia), with whom he has two kids: disaffected teen daughter Melissa (Melissa Fumero) and oft-described weirdo Lou (Ben Schwartz), the latter of whom is obsessed with adding magic-trick elements to his upcoming bar mitzvah. That M.O.D.O.K. is Jewish (Jodie is Latina) is merely one of the random aspects of Blum and Oswalt’s show, which moves between M.O.D.O.K.’s suburban domicile and his evil company AIM. After one too many epic battles against the Avengers—not to mention excessive R&D costs—AIM is in trouble, and M.O.D.O.K. agrees to sell it to a shadowy collective represented by unbearably cheery creep Austin (Beck Bennett). Compounding M.O.D.O.K.’s travails further, he’s always butting heads with lead techie Monica (Wendi McLendon-Covey), as well as being pestered by Gary (Sam Richardson), a cheery one-armed minion who, like the rest of his staff, is outfitted in a yellow hazmat suit designed for maximum generic anonymity.Read more at The Daily Beast.
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