Rocko’s Modern Life was a cartoon whose presence I merely tolerated. The 4 o’clock Ninja Turtles slot had long since been dissolved and non-commercial television had become the sole bastion of after-school cartooning. I was completely at their programming mercy – it was either the news, or them, and by extension, Rocko’s Modern Life. But watch it I did – and while I didn’t outright despise it, it certainly did nothing to raise my heart rate, or stifle my yawning.
This was probably the point, but the sheer mundanity that underscores Rocko’s life filled me with existential terror. It was depressing to observe the mediocrity of Rocko’s life and that of his friends. His best friend Heffer was an air-wasting dole bludger.
His friend Filburt was a socially-stunted loser. Rocko was the most responsible out of the lot of them and even he operated at the bare minimum. Probably mission accomplished, as far as the show’s creators were concerned, who no doubt sought to make pointed observations on the mediocrity of modern life through the medium of cartoon. But that doesn’t make the show any more enjoyable. I mean, I can appreciate how others could like it, but I would rather escape my mundane life than study it.
But none of this compares to the horror that is the videogame adaptation. The entire game is an escort mission. You are Rocko, and you must walk your dog Spunky through four unremarkable levels – featuring none of the warped architecture that characterised the cartoon – clearing mundane articles from his path, and punching/kicking enemies that respawn every time you go back to find your stupid dog. There’s a word for that: annoying.
From where I’m sitting, there’s only one clear positive outcome of this game’s existence:
Watching a pelican get punched in the face.