jstache jstache



There are bad animation ideas, and then there are ideas so utterly imbecilic that make you wish you had never become interested in cartoons in the first place. This one is of the latter variety. Jstache is a series idea featuring Eighties rocker John Oates of Hall & Oates and, get ready, his crime-fighting mustache, voiced by stand-up comic Dave Attell. According to Billboard, the idea was concocted by Evan Duby, the creative director of Primary Wave Music Publishing, which owns the Hall & Oates music catalog. A Jstache pilot was recently produced by NY-based Curious Pictures. Here’s the setup for the pilot:

It will portray Oates opening a new wing of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame that focuses on mustachioed musicians. Suddenly, a dying David Crosby appears and with his last breath warns Oates of a mysterious secret group of mustache wearers bent on killing other mustache wearers. As actor Tom Selleck attempts to escape from the latest murder scene, Oates summons his own mustache with a fist pump that simultaneously changes his clothes from conservative attire to pink pants and white boots.

Perhaps what’s most depressing is the last line of the Billboard article: “As one network executive who has seen the trailer says, ‘These guys are approaching the publishing business from a new angle. They’re taking rich copyrights and doing something innovative with them.'” Anybody who is familiar with animation knows that this type of innovation is nothing new within the art form. Producers, execs and all manner of creatively-clueless people have been ‘innovating’ since the earliest days of this art form. Thankully these people rarely last long in the business. Then again, sometimes they’re voted the smartest person in television too.

  • Daniel J. Drazen

    They’d have to change the subtitle. I mean, did they simply not know what mental image “Ride the mustache” conjures up?

  • What are you talking about? This is one of the best TV show ideas I’ve seen in years!

  • Juan Verde

    Sounds hilarious to me. I’d definitely watch this on Adult Swim.

  • J

    I can’t go for that. No-can-d0!

  • Why not a Rick Ashley cartoon? He’s arguably more relevant to a current audience, what with his frequent YouTube appearances and all. In his animated series he could fight crime, battle aliens and- hmmm, maybe I shouldn’t be saying this so loud…

  • This is as innovative as Cartoon Network’s ANDRE 3000 series, which as it appears, was conceptualized from the same train of thought. (By the way, isn’t there some guy suing the big CN because they apparently stole his idea?)

  • I, too, am a little tired of pop-culture IN my pop-culture. Especially the shows based on pop-culture, which make more pop-culture references than Trivial Pursuit. I’m also sick of inanimate “adult” animation, which I imagine this J. Stache will be. Then again, movement is only a small part of their animation problems.

    And what’s up with all the damn things without mouths having really low voices like Dave Attell or John Benjamin? Someone get rid of that.

  • Evan Duby

    Ride the mustache…what does that mean?

  • Greg Grabianski, who wrote on Beavis and Butthead, is on the project, so it’s gotta have some good writing, regardless if the subject matter doesn’t grab you.

  • tizzdogg

    I actually think this sounds like a hilariously awesome idea. Amid, I think you’re missing the absurdist humor potential here.
    Im imagining it will be something along the lines of fake-cheap retro animation like robert smigel etc.

  • tizzdogg

    Also I imagine they know exactly what image “ride the mustache” conjours up, and that’s the whole point.

  • Celia

    This idea could go either way. Awful, or awfully hilarious.

    If I could have my say, I would have J-stache capture the flavor of the long-forgotten 80’s show “Kidd Video” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lq64MJKwElw

  • Larry T

    Amid, I’m right with you on the comment about “Smartest Person in Television”. Good God, that’s angering.

    Tsk. These guys have been buying and watching too many Lou Scheimer/Filmation DVD packs and thinking that with minor tweaking, that hair-brained stuff will still work today. WHAT ABOUT ALL THE MAGNIFICENT, UNIQUE, CREATIVE IDEAS WE’RE GETTING FROM THE -REAL- TALENT THESE DAYS? TRY INVESTING IN THAT INSTEAD.

    And isn’t John Oates allegedly gay, anyway?
    This show will probably make him look a lot taller than he actually is.

  • Steve Gattuso

    There are times when you just have to sit back and gape in awe at how fate comes along and provides the world’s cynics, critics, and satirists with such rich fodder. Not just trying to achieve parity with such works as “Hammerman,” “L’il Pimp,” and “Rubik, the Amazing Cube,” this show bids fair to reach the lofty depths (I dunno how you get “lofty depths,” but they exist) of such legendary works as “Supertrain,” “Manimal,” and “My Mother, The Car.”

    I look forward to it with all of the eagerness of slamming a car door on my genitalia.

  • Chuck R.

    I was about to agree with Amid’s assessment that this had no entertainment possibilities. Then I read some of the comments above and laughed my a– off.

  • So a fight to save facial hair, including a mustache…why am I reminded vaguely of this:
    There are differences of course, but I wouldn’t go and call it innovative. As Juan Verde mentionned, if it played on Adult Swim and the writing gets really weird, it may just find an audience.
    (and I do like a lot of the Adult Swim material, so I didn’t mean that in a bad way)

  • Fred Cline


  • Mike Lucy

    This looks funny, I don’t know why you are saying it is horrible, are you being sarcastic?

  • Robert Levine

    This is obviously a parody on bad 80s cartoons. I think you may be reading too much into it, Amid.

  • Jack

    This is not unlike that “Hound Dog” concept the songwriting duo Leiber and Stoller tried to launch as an animated feature in 1988, starring a cartoon mutt singing Elvis tunes, except, as several have noted, this one does contain genuine absurdity in its premise.

  • Chris

    Crime fighting stache=comedy gold.

  • bob

    so stupid its funny.

  • Hehe, actually sounds like a funny idea to me. I don’t know that it would hold up for a series though…sounds more like a funny setup for a short film. It’s definitely something I can see on Adult Swim as a one liner.

  • JPilot

    This is bigger than animation. Please forward this to Comedy Central or Conan O’Brien. We can’t leave this one alone. It needs all the ridicule it deserves. This puts all the Chuck Norris jokes to shame.

  • Michael Sheehan

    Surely nobody is thinking this is a show meant to be taken literally? It sounds like a silly, absurd premise, with Oates and others poking fun at themselves AND crappy cartoon of the 70s and 80s if anything, almost along the lines of the Ambiguously Gay Duo or Steven Colbert’s Tek Jansen. It seems a one-joke premise, to be sure, but hardly a jaw-dropping, inconceivable horror.

  • big bad balloon

    Judging by the size of what Jstache is packin’ in his pants, I don’t think the mustache is the real weapon…

  • So this is basically like the Chuck Norris and Mr. T animated cartoons (which were really just GI Joe with celebs in place of Joe).

    They could have passed it off as post-modern hipster stuff and gotten away with it, but to call it “innovative”… that’s just stupid.

    It actually sounds quite hipster, now that I think about it. Damn them and their “irony.”

  • amid

    I’m surprised at how many people used the term ‘absurdist’ to describe this. There’s a difference between absurd and stupid. Bringing an inanimate object to life does not make something absurdist. This is something that people have been doing in animation for the past century. The difference was that in the 1920s, a talking tongue or finger in a Fleischer cartoon would be a five-second throwaway gag. Every cartoon was packed with dozens of outlandish gags. Today somebody comes up with one gag and then they build an entire half-hour series around it. It is the farthest thing from absurdist. It’s creative laziness.

  • Best show idea EVER!

  • Well said, Amid. This type of entertainment (pseudoabsurd) isn’t just lazy; it’s trendy.

  • Dennis S.

    “its hilarious man..”
    – Chong (of Cheech and Chong)

    “with a little dose of irony it could become a cult classic.”
    – Time magazine

    “It’s creative laziness”
    – Cartoon Brew

    “Highly recommended!”
    – High Times

    “I would love to be in that show.”
    – Britney Spears

    “What the &*#%@!”
    – John Lasseter

  • matt

    My God, has everyone, Amid included, gone mad? Deadpan humour just doesn’t play on the net, does it? The only thing I agree on is that it should be a one-off, not a series. But that hasn’t been the direction for decades. Amid, you’ve only just woken up if you think it’s just ‘today’ that it happens like that. And once again being disingenuous about stuff like Fleischer animation. You’re right and I agree about the throwaway gags in one respect, but by the same token they had every bit as much formulaic and repetitive animation as ‘today’. You ever watch a Popeye or Superman cartoon? Come on, give us that much at least. You and your myopia.

    If there was a credit on the bottom attributing it to The Onion or even Jack Black (in other words: if it was spelled out for you), you’d all get the HUMOUR of it. Speaking of Black, if it had been done in John K style (which is a tribute itself), you’d all be laughing your arses off. Just because they chose to poke fun at ridiculous 80s animation and the actual animation style (it made me think of Jem) and subject matter all of a sudden it’s disgusting and not funny? Of course it’s not innovative, but at least it takes the 80s thing to, yes, absurd levels. Maybe it’s because I’m not living in America I can loosen up and laugh at a bit of ridiculous humour. Even if this was inside an episode of South Park it’d have a better reception, or on SNL. Even Ambiguously Gay Duo is a one-note joke. And you think that even though a Beavis and Butthead writer is involved it’s still being done without a note of satire? My God, I’d hate to think if B&B came out now and if Judge didn’t have indie cred how Amid would take him to the effing cleaners. I’m hoping this will be good, even in a ‘so bad it’s good’ way. Come on people, that picture itself is fried gold!

    Hey, look. Even if the suits in charge DO take it all seriously and don’t have a clue, the thing stands a 99% chance of being funny DESPITE itself. God almighty, in this case most of the snobs have disappeared up their own backsides! A few seem to think it will be funny at least. Surely if the whole thing IS a trainwreck it’ll still be a glorious disaster. Go the ‘stache!

  • matt, I don’t think the humour went over anyone’s head here. It looks like everyone gets the joke, but some (Amid) don’t find it funny. Pardon me if that’s not what you were suggesting.

    I think the premise is funny, maybe as a short subject. But ironic jokes, pop-culture and dragged out gags is being beaten to death lately. Keep up with ANOTHER show like that every week? No thanks. Why watch the same thing over and over, week after week? I might as well watch the Fox and Adult Swim animated line-ups.

    And if the animation really is true to 80’s animation, it can go up a smidgen in my funny-book. But still would be better as a short.

  • pat

    I can go for that. Why be so uptight about silliness? Sounds funnier than cartoons about being obedient and brushing your teeth and crap like that.

    I had the impression that Hall & Oates are cool to their fans and like to patronize artists. I think John Oates is an art collector. He hired an illustrator he liked to do their album cover (Michael McCurdy) and then that guy did BG’s for their animated spot too. Here’s the nicely made spot for their xmas album. (I say nicely made since I worked on it haha!) -4th down on the right. http://www.ibcdigital.com/commercials.php

  • Dennis S.

    Matt Groening said he plans to create a new show which will, according to his words, “demolish rock n roll”. He said, “I will do to rock n roll what i did to the American family”.

    watch the video on youtube; he just mentioned it in passing at the end of the documentary Matt Groening: My Wasted Life.


  • rhinotonight

    “This is obviously a parody on bad 80s cartoons.”

    this is 2008. the 80’s ended 20 years ago.
    think it might be time to move on? I’m 20 years old and i’ve waited 10 years for something with a little relevance.

  • Was the slam at MacFarlane really necessary at the end?

  • mwb

    Bah, you’re just blinded by the huge paradigm shift this represents.

    This show promises to reshape the world of animation and become beloved in the hearts of the American public in a big way.

    Like Jabberjaw.


  • How about a sequel where the ‘stache teams up with Gary “BaBaBooey” Dellabate’s teeth?

  • matt

    Michael, yep I totally agree with both you and Amid that it SHOULD be a one-shot. I’m not surprised though because like I said, for the last 3 decades they’ve been spinning one-note jokes into whole series.

    And Dave, yes. Very necessary.

  • Annie-Mae

    Now Now, someone is “voted the smartest person in television” because he got that title for a reason. He’s smart enough to convince a network buy the same show three times, and Burger King to host the jokes that got rejected from those three shows. He is a genius.

    As for this. This looks hilarious, and if Dave Attell is writing it, it’ll be killer. Sure it’s another show that puts scum in the animation world but the network needs dumb little shows so they can get more sponcers to fund their better shows. I’ll watch the 1st episode but not the commercials. XD

  • If I remember correctly, Adult Swim deserves credit for saving Family Guy. They ran all the reruns, and the public said they wanted it back (for some reason).

  • matt

    Define “credit”! But you’re right, they definitely deserve SOMETHING (imagine italics there)…

    And who’s up for a “re-imagining” of Lippy the Lion and Hardy-Har-Har?!

  • writer of wrongs

    Sounds like a funny show to me. Amid must have mustache envy.

  • I’m willing to give this animation a shot.

  • I invite you all to shampoo my crotch after nuzzling my bits.


    PS. Nerds never get trim…ever.

  • Juliana

    This sounds like one of the dumbest “cartoon” ideas ever. It will definitely serve a purpose, however, not only for immature boys going through puberty, but for adults that haven’t grown out of sex jokes. I’ve been following some of the updates for J-Stache (like videos and website) and I haven’t been able to make any sense out of it, let alone an actual plot.