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Regular Show - "Under the Hood" Recap

A hooded graffiti artist nicknamed Park Avenue has taken the park by storm, cluttering the whole place with his tags and eluding the groundskeepers. As more tags mean more work cleaning up the park, Mordecai and Rigby are understandably desperate to bring Park Avenue to justice. To make matters more complicated, a false deduction has cost Muscle Man and High-Five Ghost their jobs, and it’s up to the guys to clear their names.

Unlike this week’s Adventure Time, which took its time setting up and making jokes about a very simple situation, this episode of Regular Show is all over the place in terms of plot. Sometimes it feels like it doesn’t really have enough time to fully flesh out those ideas, such as the main plot of proving Muscle Man’s innocence and the almost non-existent subplots about Muscle Man’s failing stand-up career and stint as a homeless person. The scenes inside Park Avenue’s pocket graffiti dimension and apartment feel similarly short. At the same time, I can’t really say that the episode was poorly-paced or that it wasted any time. It tried to do a lot of things in a short amount of time, and as a result the episode feels like a Cliff’s Notes version of something much larger.

If I had to pick out one thing for “Under the Hood” to focus on, I would have loved for the bulk of the episode to have taken place in Park Avenue’s graffiti world. For a show as visually conservative as Regular Show, seeing Park Avenue’s outlandish and demented artwork come to life is like a breath of fresh air. The graffiti monsters animate really well and seem like something straight out of neighboring Cartoon Network show Secret Mountain Fort Awesome. Park Avenue himself was also a highlight of the episode, and I wish they had excised the Muscle Man B-plot entirely to focus on him. “Under the Hood” is an interesting episode that does a lot of interesting and novel things, even if all of those things can’t fit together comfortably in one timeslot.

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