The boys decide to make their own movie, switching characters and genres throughout the day.
“The Tape” was a very unusual episode of Gumball. The show itself is unusual, but most of its episodes tend to follow the classical three act structure: the setup, the confrontation and the resolution. Here, there is no story. No acts. Instead, we get to witness the boys’ good-natured attempt to create a movie. We see them learning to cope with flubbing their lines. We see them introducing their friends. We see them growing unhappy with the direction of their movie and changing what it is about over and over. What we don’t see is setup for any of this. The episode begins with them making their movie and embraces that fully, with absolutely no time being spent on other things. There are no moments where they stop the camera and talk about what’s going on. What we see is what is being filmed by the characters.
It worked, and I applaud the writers for being bold and doing something different. While I love the show and have enjoyed a vast majority of its episodes, I think it’s good to take a step back every so often and experiment with something new. They certainly put their best work into it, as this episode was also very funny. I didn’t know what to expect when they decided to start filming Ocho, the 8-bit spider, but having him use the Konami Code to cheat his way to success was very amusing. I also greatly enjoyed the bits with Anais and Tobias, but due to the episode’s length, we didn’t get to see as many classmates appear in the film as I would have liked. I can only hope that the boys will make a sequel in season three so that we can see even more zaniness that only really works in an episode like this.