Nerds with Words: The Greatest Fictional Animated Musicians
You can find inspirations in the strangest of places or sometimes it is sitting right in front of your face. This week, Nicholas checked out Josie and the Pussycats for A-Z Cinema, and it got me to think about other great fictional bands, and there’s actually quite a few of them. I thought it would be fun to explore some of these acts, which includes solo performers and bands, and throw up a little poll to see which you thought were the best.
For the most part, there wasn’t much in the way of a criteria. Other than we wanted to kind of avoid musical groups that were formed as a one-off gag for a specific episode or something. There may be some of that on the list depending on how big of a focus the band was.
Josie and the Pussycats– It is only fitting that we start with the band that inspired this entire article. An animated series from the early 70s that focused on this traveling band.. things got stranger later on as they were eventually sent to space? I don’t get it either!
Jabberjaw and The Neptunes– From strange to stranger, Jabberjaw and the Neptunes was a fictional band that was fronted.. by a talking shark. Yes, the band was a shark with 4 humans who went around undersea performing music. And he ain’t get no respect! (Couldn’t find a video of them performing so here’s the intro)
Jem- I only really remember this cartoon for its theme song, which is extremely catchy and flashy. It seems like her music on the show isn’t much different. Made in the era of rock and roll, JEM seems to embody the spirit of the 80s with her bright fashion and hair.
Alvin and the Chipmunks– The original (and the best?) rodent led band. Alvin and the Chipmunks have survived for several decades, though some have been better than others. They aren’t really known for original songs, but for covering popular songs of the day.
The Archies– Well what do you do when your a teenager in the 60s? You start a band with your friends and name it after yourself! The Archies is made up of popular Archie characters including Archie, Betty and Veronica.
The Beets– The Beets are the first entry on our list that isn’t a band that is the focus of the show. Instead for the main characters of Doug, The Beets were the biggest and best band in the entire world. Several episodes were focused on the band either having a concert, coming to town or releasing a new song. However, nothing can ever compare to Killer Tofu!
Timmy and the Lords of the Underworld– I noted that we wouldn’t use one-off bands for the list, but Timmy and the Lords of the Underworld does take on a life beyond the show. As the song/band have been featured in video games such as Rock Band so we’re just gonna stretch this once!
Jet Screamer– Much like the Beets, Jet Screamer was never the central focus of The Jetsons. Instead he was the popular act that the Jetsons’ teenage daughter was obsessed with. Eventually, her dad got a chance to perform their smash hit, Eep Opp Ork Ah-Ah.
The Junkyard Band– Bill Cosby’s smash show, Fat Albert, also featured the main characters in their own band. Dubbed the Junkyard Band, they would perform their music with makeshift instruments, and it was so beautiful.
Mystik Spiral– Another band that was less the focus, and more the “cool” band for a show. In this case, we get Daria. They are a lot more heavy metal than any band we have displayed thus far, but makes for some diversity on the list.
Dethlok- However, you don’t get any more metal than this band. The title band of the TV series,Â Metalocalypse. The show, much like the band, is a little extreme, a little over the top, but all in good fun. Check out their video for I Ejaculate Fire.
Sonic Underground– I remember when I was a wee little lad playing Sonic the Hedgehog, the first thing I thought was this is so a great concept for a band. Said no one ever in history… except for the company that decided to produce Sonic Underground. Which turned everyone’s favorite speedster into a musician with his brother and sister!
Chip Skylark– Another band/singer, who is there for the admiration of the teenagers/children in the show. In this case, Chip Skylark is the most popular singer on the show the Fairly Oddparents. He has a few run ins with the main characters including coming up with a song about Timmy’s babysitter, Icky Vicky.
Beck– I honestly don’t know much or anything about them except the band is the focal point of the anime.
Powerline– This is the first, and only, entry on the list which isn’t actually from a TV show. Instead, Powerline is from A Goofy Movie. The only reason he makes the list is because a large portion of the plot deals with Max trying to get to his concert. There are also several musical numbers from or inspired by the musician!
Now that you have gotten a taste of the acts. Vote in the poll here or on the side of the site. Drop us some comments if you feel an act is missing for the list and we’ll do our best to review!