While I do love the 90s, I can admit that there are some things that came out in this decade that were… Less than spectacular to say the least. There were tons of good shows from this decade that I feel held up over time, but sadly some shows just did not age well at all. There are also those shows that I feel should just stay in the past. One such show was one of YTV’s forgotten cartoons, Monster By Mistake. For those of you who don’t know, YTV is a Canadian television network.
They are often best remembered for airing the classic Mainframe shows like Beast Wars, Shadow Raiders, and ReBoot. However, another CGI cartoon that they aired quite a bit on the network was Monster By Mistake. Based off an obscure children’s book, MBM was a bizarre CGI cartoon about a kid named Warren who would turn into a monster every time he sneezes.
He was inflicted with this curse by a magical imp-like wizard, who had tricked the hapless youth into reading a book of spells. Warren must work together with his sister and a ghost named Johnny in an attempt to remove the curse and stop the evil wizard from escaping his ball-like prison and conquering the earth. On paper, this sounds like an amazing and fun idea for show. In execution, it’s pretty bland and forgettable.
The show often focuses on Warren having to deal with his affliction, which usually results in just some awkward shenanigans. You’d think having the ability to turn into a giant furry blue monster would lead to some creative adventures, or intense fight sequences. Sadly, the monster form’s only purpose is to have half the cast freak out, while Warren desperately finds a way to change back without getting discovered.
I’m not sure why he would to keep this secret, especially since the extremely dumb bully figures it out on his own in the second episode. Does he think he will get kicked out of town if his secret is discovered? I don’t really know, but the show seems to make a big deal about this “secret” identity.
I remember watching this show back in the day and not thinking it was too great. It certainly didn’t make staying home from school sick any fun, especially when it was the thing YTV liked to air most during the weekdays. Going back to the show now makes me like it even less, due to the extremely dated CGI. It was obvious that that the makers of this show didn’t have the same animation budget as ReBoot or Beast Wars.
What surprised me most about this show is that somehow half of the episodes ended up getting lost. Nobody could find at least 50% of the series for the longest time. It’s kind of absurd when you think about it, considering how often episodes of this show got aired. This how ran for 7 years and for a total of about 52-54 episodes, yet episodes are harder to find than inner enlightenment.
Trust me though, you won’t find any enlightenment from sitting through any singular episode of this show. I’m surprised I was able to tolerate this series growing up, though I think the main reason I watched it was because of Mainframe’s shows. Those shows got me invested in CGI cartoons, which were rare at the time.
In a way, that kind of made Monster By Mistake somewhat unique. It came out in a time where there were only a handful of shows of its ilk, which made it stand out more. That doesn’t change the fact that its still pretty bland and generic, even by mediocre kid shows standards. Still, I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t have any fond memories of the show, considering how much I’ve watched of it. Then again, that was so long ago I probably can’t even recall said memories.