Last week we looked at the first CG Zorro cartoon. Tonight we’re going back to 2D in this second Zorro show. Sure there are plenty of others–I just found one more and I’m curious about seeing it in the future, maybe even next week–but how many long themes can I do for this feature? Let me introduce you, and myself actually, to Zorro: Generation Z, a show that I think is best described as either Batman Beyond or Phantom: 2040 depending on whether or not you get the latter reference. I think that would be the most accurate though, as the descendant of the original takes up his ancestor’s mantle in the future, complete with futuristic takes on the old gear, to fight an oppressive group. There just haven’t been 20+ other Zorros by this point, at least in this continuity as far as I know. Descendant and protege Zorros are nothing new.
Developed by Rick Ungar for BKN and now owned by Media DHX through the chain of acquisitions, Diego de la Vega takes up the name of Zorro to protect Pueblo Grande from a corrupt government. He even gets his own Bernardo and Garcia in their usual roles, as well as a rival crimefighter who has her own beef with the evil mayor, Horace Martinez. The first two episodes are a two-parter, “A New Generation”, so thanks to an official YouTube posting I can bring you a taste of the future incarnation. I hear an episode has him time-travel to meet the original Zorro, so maybe I’ll take a look at that one someday. Tonight however we’re just going to see how this all begins. Enjoy, amigos!
First thought: the theme is rather lame and the intro is just a bunch of clips and a logo. Never impresses me. The animation isn’t terrible but it isn’t exactly wowing me either. I’ve seen worse (the next non-Zorro entry for example) but I’ve seen better. They actually decided not to mess with Zorro’s classic design all that much, even less so than Phantom: 2040 did with the Phantom’s upgraded costume. Toronado is a motorcycle now, which does make sense given the time period. Having all your high-teched Zorro weapons in one unit seems to come with some potential problems but it’s pretty cool. I just wonder why the sword is now a Darth Maul staff thing? Finally, where did Diego and Bernardo get all this equipment and redesign the headquarters so quickly? I wonder how Zorro’s getting out of this one? Well, lookie here, it’s the conclusion. Let’s meet the Scarlet Whip.
Admittedly it’s not as good as the other two shows I compared Zorro: Generation Z to but it’s not a bad show really. The concept seems solid and there is some effort put into it. I’ll have to check out more episodes (like that time travel one I mentioned where new Zorro meets old Zorro) but it seems worth checking out. As I mentioned there’s an official YouTube channel for the show, but it’s one of those sites where they uploaded multiple versions of the episodes to keep it in the subscription feed and the first version of episode one I went to use had an advertisement like every minute, which is as annoying as it sounds.