When they first appeared on the animated variety comedy show Rocky and Bullwinkle in the early ’60s, the characters of Mr. Peabody and Sherman stood out immediately. Not only did their absurdist adventures constitute one of the first stabs at “edutainment,” the pair’s relationship inverted the usual scheme of a boy and his faithful dog. The tale of an erudite hound and his somewhat dimwitted son traveling through time was perfectly in keeping with the overall show’s oddball sense of humor.
Many years since Rocky and Bullwinkle left regular network syndication (but not so long that the property has left the collective subconscious), a new feature film take on Mr. Peabody and Sherman will be arriving in theaters in 2014. This CGI-animated update has released a trailer for the stateside market that shows off a kid-friendly romp through history as Mr. Peabody, “the most accomplished dog in the world,” attempts to undo damage done to the timeline by his overeager ward.
The trailer shows off a film that – like many latter-day animated features – includes humor directed at both kids and their ticket-purchasing guardians. There are actually some impressive gags here – namely, the Trojan horse being Trojan-horsed and Leonardo da Vinci’s creepy artificial boy.
Of course, one has to wonder just how much interest this film will drum up, given that almost an entire generation largely associates the characters with a throwaway gag from The Simpsons‘ “Treehouse of Horror V.” Given the rich comedic possibilities of the classic setup, we hope that Mr. Peabody and Sherman will justify its revival.
Directed by Rob Minkoff (The Lion King), Mr. Peabody and Sherman stars Ty Burrell (Modern Family) as Mr. Peabody and Max Charles (The Amazing Spider-Man) as Sherman. The film also features the voice talents of Stanley Tucci (Captain America: The First Avenger), Patrick Warburton (Family Guy), Stephen Colbert (The Colbert Report), and living legend Mel Brooks (The Producers).
Mr. Peabody and Sherman will warp into theaters on March 7th, 2014.