Bee & Puppycat is a cartoon series created by Natasha Allegri that follows magical temp workers of the same name, the latter being a creature that "looks like a cat, but smells like a dog." Puppycat and Bee work together and travel to magical worlds for quick grocery money, dispatched by the equally as magical Temp Bot.
Allegri was already making fabulous work before she hit Kickstarter with this project, working primarily on Cartoon Network's Adventure Time by creating female heroines Fionna and Cake to counter the usual male protagonist's Finn and Jake. The characters quickly rose to amass a large fandom following—more proof that gender inclusiveness works!
In addition, Allegri worked on the storyboards that eventually ended up as Over The Garden Wall, an Emmy-winning mini series from Cartoon Network starring Elijah Wood. The story follows two brothers as they walk lost through the woods, where hijinx ensues with a cast of fantastical creatures.
Basically, Natasha Allegri is a cartoon powerhouse. I encourage anyone interested in a more "grown-up" full-length cartoon to check out Over The Garden Wall, but I really gotta rep for my buds Puppycat and Bee here.
What is so empowering about a cutesy cartoon like Bee & Puppycat, you ask? Well, other than the creator being a woman in an industry dominated by men, it boils down to Bee's characterization as a girl at the whims of a fantasy while realistically showing us the mundanity of mid-20s life. She's not a super-heroine, she's not saving her friends and Puppycat with ease every episode—she's a normal girl who's broke, awkward, and burps loudly, and who happens to stumble in and out of conflicts with minor scratches.
The series follows Allegri's original formulation of Bee & Puppycat as a web comic, which is now a fully published graphic novel. Volume II was released this summer, and III will be out later this fall. After reading and seeing the series, I highly recommend to experienced geeks and non-geeks alike.
On top of all this, the show is cutesy and it flaunts it! The feminine, which is so often decried in the world of cartoons, besides obvious examples like My Little Pony, is central to the whole concept of the show. No matter how much Puppycat wants Bee to buy him a leather jacket, he's still a puppy....cat! Basically, an adorable lil creature. This is so empowering because you will never see a dichotomy between what is "girly" and what is not in this show. It's cute and femme and that's that!
Bee & Puppycat has six episodes out now, which includes a prologue that introduces you to the storyline, and it's all available on YouTube for free! I've included the whole series below, and with each episode only six minutes long, I encourage all you BUSTies to check it out ASAP:
Images via Tumblr, Cartoon Network.
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Let's talk about queerness, comics, and shutting down systems of oppression. Carbs enthusiast with a lot to say about living femme in this world and staying positive. Contributor to the zine Clitorally and founder of Static zine. Catch me looking for dogs to pet around town.