The Amazing World Of Gumball - "The Genius" Recap
“When Darwin aces a test, he is labeled a genius and sent off to a government institute for further study. Broken up by the news, Gumball vows to become a genius in order to be sent to the institute as well and reunited with his brother, all the while Nicole and Richard try to fill the new found void in their lives.”
In my analysis of the first half of the first season, I called for more consistency. Amongst other things, I hated the fact that Gumball’s level of intelligence changed so much between episodes as it seemed inconsistent to change that aspect of a character for one episode and then change it back for the next. I really disliked “The Picnic” because of that, as it portrayed Gumball as being too stupid to live, and this episode made more of the same mistakes. I know that making characters stupid for the sake of jokes is a tried-and-true trope, and I’m not calling on the writers to stop doing that, but there are limits to everything. Gumball knows how to read. We’ve seen him read before. He knows how to use a computer as well. So why are we supposed to laugh when he is suddenly shown as being incapable of doing either in this episode? We know that he’s not that stupid, yet we are supposed to believe that he is despite evidence to the contrary. I know that this episode was written well in advance of my aforementioned analysis, but I sincerely hope that the second season gets its act together.
I didn’t really enjoy this episode, but it did have some good things going for it. It was great to see an episode that played around with the natural dynamics of the characters. Darwin wasn’t there and we got to see how the Wattersons coped with that. I’m also a huge fan of Nicole, and while I”m surprised that she didn”t just go berserk and bust Darwin out of the institute, we got to see more of her unhinged side during her attempt to make Rocky the new Darwin. I did find it interesting, however, that people seemed shocked that Anais was a genius. I mean, she’s a four year old who attends a junior high school. Shouldn’t the government have already been aware of her genius status? I also found it interesting that Darwin was registered as a pet fish instead of a child, as even though I know of his origin, the fact that he was never formally adopted raises some interesting questions that will probably never be answered. As for the rest of the episode, it had another great original song and there were some decent jokes. I just wish this episode would have taken after its title and been far smarter than it was.