“THE REGULAR SHOW” Finds Its (College) Audience: J.Q. Quintel Interview

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Regular Show

There’s a new season of The Regular Show out on DVD–specifically, Season 3–and creator J.Q. Quintel (who also writes and storyboards some shows) is out to promote his Cartoon Network series. For those who don’t know, The Regular Show is about a merry band of misfit weirdos who have weird adventures in a small town. The adventures are as weird as you’d expect from a show with characters like Rigby the Raccoon, Benson the Gumball Machine, and Muscle Man the Human.

We were thinking that Quintel, though, might be surprised at how eager the COED staff was to discuss The Regular Show. As it turns out, not so much.

“We’re pretty much making it for college students and ourselves,” Quintel explains. “That’s pretty much where our sensibilities lie. We picked that up on the internet pretty quickly. We were finding comments that clearly weren’t from young children, and we’d be out and about while meeting people who watched the show.”

Kids can still learn a lot from The Regular Show, though. The cartoon has actually offered one of the more adult romantic story lines out there, with Mordecai the Bluejay having a complete relationship with Margaret the Robin. Other cartoons would have a recurring gag where a character was too afraid to approach the object of his affections. The Regular Show had a complete saga where Mordecai and Margaret got together, before breaking up and Margaret moving away.

“I really enjoyed how the Mordecai/Margaret arc worked out,” says Quintel. “We watched them grow and change, right up to Margaret leaving. We didn’t do that thing where episodes revert back to where everyone was so you can continue on as a television show. Those are some of my favorite episodes. Of course, I also really like ‘Eggscenlent,’ where Mordecai was trying to eat an entire 123-egg omelette to win a trucker hat. That one won us an Emmy, so that’ll always be a favorite.”

The Regular Show looks set to continue its quality run, too. We can name a few great cartoons that have fallen apart once the creators got a chance to run off to new projects. Then new writers come along to try and recreate something that was already perfect. Quintel is actually determined to keep The Regular Show going…um, regularly.

“We scrub over all the writing to make sure it’s like what all of the characters should sound like. There’s a lot of internal checking to make sure it sounds like The Regular Show and never sounds too cartoony. There’s no danger of it going off the rails. I’m staying here, and everyone else here has been around since the beginning. We’re doing the same things we’ve always done. People in the colleges should keep watching it as long as we keep up the quality.”

And The Regular Show also has another special appeal for the COED audience. Quintel knows what makes for logical choices in a cartoon universe. “All the characters are smart in their own ways,” he notes, “but make dumb decisions a lot–which I guess is true of a lot of college students.”

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