What Went Right With… The Red Guy?

A drawing of cartoon character The Reg Guy by What Went Wrong Or Right With...? for

The Red Guy from the Cartoon Network series Cow And Chicken was arguably one of the greatest cartoon characters ever created. For me he’s up there with Daffy Duck, Bugs Bunny, and Foghorn Leghorn.

Created by David Weiss, Cow & Chicken and the spin-off show I Am Weasel were brilliant cartoons that appealed not only to young kids but also teenagers and even adults. These two cartoons built on the groundwork laid down by the likes of Nickelodeon’s Ren & Stimpy and MTV’s Beavis & Butthead, and they possessed a wonderful mix of of zany, surreal, slapstick, and sometimes darkly comedic content and stood out from other, safer, more typical children’s shows.

Cow And Chicken had some hilarious moments and nine times out of ten it was when the The Red Guy showed up. The Red Guy if you don’t know was an ever-present character and source of all angst, conflict, and adventure on the show, he slipped into various guises and with a quick wardrobe and name change he was the same yet different character each episode.

Sometimes sliding into scene, sometimes “butt walking”, and sometimes rolling towards the camera, The Red Guy was a constant source of hilarity. His unique, cheeky yet slightly pervy laugh was very amusing and let’s not forget his constant buttock-genitalia-underwear-related pseudonyms such as Rear Admiral Floyd, Major Wedgie, Mrs. Barederriere, Geraldo Rearviewa, Larry Lackapants, Baron Von Non-Leiderhosen, and Lance Sackless to name but a few. Everything The Red Guy said and did was side-splittingly funny.

The Red Guy popped up in almost every episode to torment Cow, Chicken, Weasel, and Baboon and eventually lead them into all kinds of hijinks and chaos, for instance giving Chicken a credit card and then pestering him for payment for a single piece of chewing gum or putting Cow and Chicken through military hell like a toon version of Bill And Ted’s Bogus Journey.

The Red Guy was of course the devil; the source of all mischievousness, strife, and general evilness, but when he changed his outfit and entered the plot as a different character ranging from an Admiral to an Air Stewardess, he went unnoticed by the other characters on screen, a fantastic cartoon convention of being oblivious to the obvious.

Every single Reg Guy alter ego was hysterical, from The King And Queen Of Cheese to The Orthodontic Policeman, and even his “Dead Ghost, Coast to Coast” brilliantly parodied Cartoon Network’s own Space Ghost, Coast To Coast. When he played Bunny the Flight Attendant in episode “Chicken’s Don’t Fly”, his endless, replayed walk down the aisle followed by him serving Cow And Chicken their in-flight meal consisting of a live owl, is an example of his surreal antics. Safe to say that every time The Red Guy showed up it was priceless comedy.

Voiced by Charlie Adler (who also played Professor Monkey-For-A-Head in Earthworm Jim amongst other things) The Red Guy is a classic character and it would be great to see something as witty and daring as both Cow And Chicken and The Red Guy back on Cartoon Network, because at the moment, all the lame, lacklustre, hipster-enticing shite they have airing on their channel is a real turn off, quite literally.

Seeing Red.

8 replies »

  1. Have you seen this animated series called Rick & Morty? I’ve heard good things about this show, some saying it to be as good as the classic Cartoon Network shows like Cow & Chicken


    • I’ve watched a few episodes of Rick And Morty and yes it’s entertaining and quite funny. It’s like a weird mix of Dexter’s Laboratory, Back To The Future, and Beavis And Butthead.

      I still prefer Cow And Chicken however because it pushed the envelope of kid’s TV (daytime Cartoon Network) rather than Adult Swim which can say and do whatever it wants to. In that respect Cow And Chicken was a more subversive cartoon like The Ren & Stimpy Show.

  2. There’s another animated series that you might want to check out as well… It’s called Mononoke, an anime series from Japan that was released in 2007, consisting of just 12 episodes, 5 different stories and only one season. Not many people, even the most hardcore anime fans from Japan and elsewhere, have seen it. Although I’m not a huge fan of anime, the series is one of the best few animated shows I’ve ever seen till this day and also a truly underrated series that I think deserves more recognition. It’s unique, interesting, touching (without feeling contrived) and a revelation, for me, personally. This is the promotional art poster for Mononoke:

    Mononoke is actually a spin-off series from a story arc called “Bakeneko” shown in Toei Animation’s 2006’s animated horror anthology series, Ayakashi: Samurai Horror Tales. It’s from episodes 9-11 where the story arc “Bakeneko” takes place.

    You can watch episodes 9-11 for the Bakeneko story arc of Ayakashi: Samurai Horror Tales here:

    And the Mononoke series here: (all episodes)

    All of the episodes are already subtitled in English

    • OMG YES! FINALLY SOMEONE MENTIONED MONONOKE HERE!!!, if you have the time and chance, do watch this animated show! It’s seriously a great show that doesn’t receive a huge amount of popularity and the fact it shares almost the same name as the widely popular Studio Ghibli animated movie from Hayao Miyazaki called Princess Mononoke, just make this show even more and more obscure. It showcases a very unique take on direction with a unique plot in all of the 5 different story arcs with a dazzling art style (though i admit the second story arc is the weakest one but the third story onward concerning about masks and the forth story about incense are the best ones). Mononoke has got an interesting episode structure unlike most animated shows today. Like previously mentioned, the show is split into five different story arcs, each telling a different tale of the Medicine Seller (the main character of the series as you see in the poster) where he travels around Edo period of Japan (and towards the end of the series, around the 1920s) helping out people with their problems caused by spirits known as mononoke. Each story arc has its own style and focuses on a certain human aspect whether that be love, greed, birth or death etc. The show is like a psychological occult mixed with murder and mystery and you might need to re-watch over and over again because of the symbolism that can be found throughout the episode.

  3. haha! i remember this show, and i really enjoyed the red guy. whats ur thoughts on courage the cowardly dog tho? its a really wierd mix and my favorite cn show

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