Season 1 Episode 1
The kingdom of Dreamland is getting ready for the wedding of Princess Bean. King Zog has made all of the arrangements and has chosen a prince that will the kingdom power. All he has to do is get his daughter to the alter and all of his dreams come true. Unfortunately, Bean isn’t at the castle, she’s down in the town beating commoners in cards and starting bar fights. In another part of the kingdom, an elf named Elfo has grown tired of living in a land full of joy as a carefree candy maker and distributor. He yearns for something different and he’s going to take a chance no other elf has by crossing over into another world.
After being dragged back to the castle in order to face her wedding, Bean discovers a mystery present. When she opens it, she discovers that it contains a tiny demon named Luci who is there to corrupt the Princess. Unfortunately, his schemes seem to resemble more petty annoyances than anything else. After a series of tragedies strike the wedding, Bean, Elfo and Luci find themselves on the run from Zog’s forces and the brother of Bean’s [SPOILER] fiancé as the first episode comes to a cliffhanger ending both figuratively and literally.
The first episode of Disenchantment has a lot of Matt Groening’s style of humor and there are some really funny moments. Unfortunately, there are some pacing issues with the first episode that left some pretty slow moments in between jokes and situations. You get the sense that the writers are trying to tell a pretty dense story, but they’re not there yet with this first episode. I laughed a lot at many of the moments in the episode and even found it funny how much Elfo resembles Bart Simpson. I wanted to like this first episode more than I did. It’s functional as a first episode, but it’s not breaking any new ground as far as comedy or storytelling.
With a platform like Netflix, there is the expectation that the series would push the boundaries a little more than they could on network and I don’t see that here. It feels safe and in comparison to other animated shows on Netflix like Big Mouth, safe is a bad thing. We’ll see if it manages to find its voice and what that looks like going forward.