Krapopolis Review – IGN

Krapopolis: A Review of the New Animated Comedy Series

Krapopolis premieres with two episodes September 24 on Fox. This is a spoiler-free review of the first three episodes.

Upon hearing that Dan Harmon, the creative mind behind hits like Community and Rick and Morty, has created a new adult animated comedy, Krapopolis, featuring an all-star cast of British comedians including Richard Ayoade, Matt Berry, and Hannah Waddingham, excitement levels skyrocket. However, Krapopolis falls short of its potential. From its ancient Greek setting to its surprisingly violent storylines, the show lacks the sharpness and timely humor that Harmon’s previous works are known for. While it may cater to Greek myth enthusiasts and scholars, it fails to capture a broad audience. The standout performance of Hannah Waddingham as the narcissistic goddess Deliria shines amidst an otherwise lackluster start for Krapopolis, making it one of Harmon’s less impactful efforts in recent memory.

The Learning Curve of “All Hail the Goddess of Likeability”

The series opens with “All Hail the Goddess of Likeability,” immersing the audience in the deep end of Greek mythology. For those who haven’t brushed up on their mythological knowledge, there’s a learning curve in understanding the characters and power dynamics within the fictional city of Krapopolis. Unfortunately, the show lacks an opening title sequence that could have provided a clearer premise, leaving viewers to piece things together on their own.

Krapopolis Gallery

In Krapopolis, Tyrannis (played by Richard Ayoade) is the nerdy, yet ambitious king of the developing city. as the mortal son of the goddess Deliria (Hannah Waddingham) and the monster Shlub (Matt Berry), Tyrannis wants to lead his people into a future of innovation and science. However, his quirky and dysfunctional family is a constant obstacle to his grand visions. Ayoade brings his signature nasal and whiny delivery to the role of Tyrannis, a king with intellect but none of his parents’ charisma. Berry plays Shlub, a character who predominantly relies on his “oversexed guy” shtick, often clueless about anything unrelated to his own desires. Pam Murphy as Stupendous, Tyrannis’ strong but headstrong sister, serves as the muscle of the family. Duncan Trussell portrays Hippocampus, a short-tempered, aspiring scientist with a unique mermaid-like appearance.

While the show features a talented ensemble, Hannah Waddingham steals the spotlight as the self-absorbed goddess Deliria. Her comedic timing and larger-than-life performance injects much-needed energy into the series. Unfortunately, none of the other characters on Krapopolis match Waddingham’s level of energy, creating an imbalance in the show’s comedic tone.

Ambitious Themes with Formulaic Execution

Storywise, Krapopolis falls short of Harmon’s usual ambitious standards. The ancient Greek backdrop serves as a playground for the creators to add contemporary twists to familiar elements like the Trojan horse and the Olympics. In “The Stuperbowl,” Stupendous inadvertently turns rock-throwing into a violent, football-like game that ignites the crowd’s bloodlust. This sequence invents modern sports rituals with an anachronistic twist, offering humorous moments. However, the reliance on scatological humor feels tired and predictable. Additionally, Tyrannis’ schemes follow a sitcom-like formula, losing their novelty quickly.

Almost all new TV shows need a few episodes to find their voice and rhythm, and that’s the case with Krapopolis.

Furthermore, Krapopolis explores gruesome violence due to the coexistence of humans, gods, and monsters. The abundance of maulings, graphic murders, and throwaway deaths attempts to recapture the comedic brilliance of Monty Python, but falls short. The effectiveness of these dark comedic moments varies depending on the guest stars’ performances. Keith David shines as the deadly leader King Asskill, while Amber Stevens West delivers an over-the-top performance as Athena, who has an ongoing feud with Deliria.

While it is common for new shows to find their footing over several episodes, Krapopolis fails to innovate visually or comedically within the animation space. When compared to fierce competitors like Star Trek: Lower Decks and the revived Futurama, which successfully satirize present-day absurdities within fantastical settings, Krapopolis falls behind. It remains to be seen if the series will manage to climb to the same comedic heights.