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Pig in the Big City
Format

480i/576i (4:3 SDTV)

No. of episodes

27

Network

Fox

Creator(s)

Mo Willems

Executive producer(s)

Mo Willems
Cyndi Tang (season 1)

Starring

Kevin Seal
James Godwin
Ken Schatz
Stephanie D'Abruzzo
Christine Walters
Ruth Buzzi
Fran Brill
Bradley Glenn
Joey Mazzarino
Jerry Nelson

First aired

September 10, 2006

Last aired

May 18, 2008

"Pig in the Big City" is an American adult animated sitcom created by Mo Willems for Fox. The series' pilot first premiered as part of Fox's Animation Domination on September 10, 2006. The show is produced by Curious Pictures and 20th Century Fox Television.

Created by Mo Willems, the bulk of the show follows a runaway sheep, Pig, in his new life in "the Big City". It also features several unrelated sketches and shorts, similar to The Rocky & Bullwinkle Show and The Fugitive. With an emphasis on more "sophisticated" (in particular, literal) humor, using multiple forms of rhetoric from the characters to the plots, it was more popular with older audiences. It was also unusual in featuring many comic references to film-making and television broadcasting.

At the time, the premiere of Pig in the Big City was the highest-rated premiere for a Fox adult animated series.

On May 18, 2008, the show was cancelled by Fox Network after 2 seasons (due to low ratings).

Premise

Pig lives happily on a farm with his friends. Unfortunately, a Secret Military Organization, led by General Specific, needs Pig for its Pig-Powered Ray Gun (with a pig-shaped hole in it).

General Specific will get Pig at any cost, and, knowing that the farm is at stake, Pig is forced to leave for the big city. Now Pig is on the run from General Specific and the CIA, who is assisted by his henchmen, Private Public, the Angry Scientist (who in the show is often wrongly referred to as "Mad Scientist"), a bunch of other military types, and the Plot Device.

In addition, Pig has to come to grips with the Big City and trying to romance his love, Swanky the Poodle. All the while, he has to avoid the attentions of a host of unwelcome characters — Lisa Rental and Swanky's owner, the sheep-hating Lady Richington, wielding a stainless-steel wig.

Characters

  • Pig (voiced by Kevin Seal) is an anthropomorphic pig, who is the main protagonist of the series. He is owned by Farmer John, who named him pig due to the fact that "when he was born, he looked just like a pig." Pig has a hard time with life—between getting chased by the military and trying to see Swanky the Poodle, the poodle that Pig loves, without getting bonked on the head by Lady Richington with her stainless steel wig. Yet, he still makes time to act in dish-washing commercials, travel through time, get a job at a hip club, and also makes a living jumping over fences for insomniacs. Pig snorts but does not speak in any intelligible human language. As he is a normal pig, aside from possibly higher intelligence, he has trouble resisting his animal urges, such as eating hay, even when he is being chased by General Specific.
  • General Specific (voiced by Kevin Seal) is the main antagonist of the series. The dim-witted leader of the Secret Military Organization, Specific does his best to capture Pig for his Pig-Powered Ray Gun. He is never discouraged by his constant losses. Specific always speaks through his clenched teeth. He mentions in one episode that he has a steel plate in his head. In one episode, he also developed the habit of throwing his subordinates into "The Pit" (a door, appearing out of nowhere under the characters' feet) (he once did it to the subordinate who asked him why he doesn't simply catch some random pigs and make the Pig-Powered Ray Gun compatible to it), but later, finds out that this is a problem, when neither he nor Private Public can maneuver the helicopter properly, because Specific dropped the helicopter pilot into the Pit. General Specific's name is an oxymoron. On his uniform, he has 3 medals that look like exclamation marks, and one that looks like a question mark.
  • Farmer John (voiced by James Edmund Godwin) is Pigs's original owner, also seeking to recapture him—although in a more mild-mannered way than General Specific. In one episode, it is revealed that "Far" and "Mer" are actually Farmer John's first and middle name, not his job description. According to Dirk and Sondra's reenacting of Farmer John's parents naming him, he was named "Far" after his father's desire to know how "far" he goes in life and "Mer" after a relative of Farmer John's father. Sondra also jokingly suggested (albeit it's unclear if she said it on her own or if she was still acting as Farmer John's mother) that Farmer John could be named 'Elton'. Both Dirk and Sondra laughed at the suggestion. Farmer John's personality is best described that, in order not to kill any of his farm animals, he prepares water soup for the re-union. He is constantly using pseudo-psychological talk, which is, in fact, extremely boring and instead of "helping", it forces the characters not to pay attention to him. Another example of his annoyance is his "thanks" speech at the re-union, where he thanks for everything, including "air" and "silly shoes". He sometimes calls Pig "Piggy".
  • Ben Plotz (voiced by Ken Schatz) is the show's narrator. He often complains about the quality of the writing on the show, but overall, he has an appreciation for the cast. He, on one occasion, embellishes the storyline when he dislikes the ending.
  • Private Public (voiced by James Edmund Godwin) is General Specific's right-hand man. He is always right behind General Specific, and despite being much smarter, he would prefer to receive orders than give them. His name is also oxymoronic.
  • The Angry Scientist (voiced by Mo Willems) often gets his hump busted for being an Angry Scientist rather than Mad, but he is the brains behind the organization, despite his extremely limited grasp of the English language (referring to it with the phrase "Why are you not my Englishness be understanding? All the timing with that"). His inventions include the Pig-Powered Ray Gun, the Clome, and a Time-Travel Bicycle (although Private Public flatly points out that if he can invent a time machine why can't he invent a ray gun that works without a pig). He often goes into fits of rage at General Specific when he calls him a 'Mad Scientist' ("ANGURY!! I am an ANGURY Scientist!!"), and on one occasion, he is called the 'Angry Chemist'. At the end of Season 1, he considers calling himself "The Scientist with Some Issues", now getting angry whenever he gets referred as "The Angry Scientist". He's mistakenly called 'Mad Scientist' so often that, in one occasion, he complained about if out of habit when he was called 'Angry Scientist'. He once opened ananger management center where he taught people to become angrier. General Specific used to be one of his clients until he said the center made him madder, making the Angry Scientist expel him, claiming it was an 'Anger Management Center' and not a 'Madness Management Center'. General Specific was so angry for being expelled The Angry Scientist considered him another satisfied customer.
  • The Plot Device (voiced by Stephanie D'Abruzzo) is a machine that comes up with plans for General Specific, such as disguising sleep potion as water soup to sneak into Farmer John's house. Her name is a pun as her main role in the stories is as a plot device.
  • General Lee Outrageous (voiced by Joey Mazzarino) is General Specific's cousin, who is a stereotypical 1970s disco partier. He is nearly identical to Specific, but has sunglasses, shiny clothing, blue hair shaped into a ponytail, a gold tooth and three stars on his hat, as opposed to Specific's one star. Lee is also Specific's rival, and uses a hog-powered ray-gun. He has a sidekick called Private Party, who is similar to Private Public and could be his cousin. His name is a pun on "generally outrageous".
  • Lady Virginia Richington (voiced by Ruth Buzzi in the pilot and Stephanie D'Abruzzo in the series) is the owner of Swanky. Lady Richington, of the Filthy Richingtons, is quite rich. She owns the majority of the city and is never seen without her gaudy jewellery and lavish clothing. While she may not look very intimidating, she has a severe hatred of pigs in general, and won't hesitate to pummel them into fluffy pulps with her stainless steel wig.
  • Lisa Rental (voiced by Stephanie D'Abruzzo) is an annoying, evil little girl, who thinks that Pig is a "cutesy wootsey porker" and wants him desperately. Lisa also loves to refer to Pig as "Doggy Woggy Smoggy Foggy Loggy Toggy Doggy". Her name is a pun on the words "lease a rental". When she and General Specific first met, she convinced him that Pig was a porker by having Pig obey her commands (not knowing her true colors back then, Pig played along) and telling him Pig was a porky pig.
  • X Agent is a blue pig whom General Specific hired in order to capture Pig. X Agent becomes best friends with Pig and, after feeling remorse for betraying Pig, betrays Specific and becomes a Batman-like superhero. In another episode, he becomes an overprotective guardian of Pig. He leaves after Completely Powerful Guy reads a telegram from "The Writer", informing X Agent that he has been assigned to Toledo, Ohio, and that the request is not "just a convenient way of getting you out of this show". Like Pig, X Agent snorts and does not speak in intelligible human language. Oxymoron is an ox who debuted in numerous "Phony Bologna" advertisements for the Oxymoron company. He also makes cameos in some episodes. His name is a parody of oxymoron, a phrase in which an adjective that means the opposite of the noun that it describes is used (e.g. a smart idiot, a planned coincidence, Hopeless Optimistic, etc.).
  • Victor (voiced by Ken Schatz) is an obnoxious salesman and spokesperson who usually hosts the Oxymoron commercials. The other people in the commercials do not usually expect him to show up and often demand to know who he is when he does, but he never tells them. Victor does not (or wishes not to) see the harmfulness and uselessness of his products.
  • Jay (voiced by Ken Schatz) is a man who, whenever Pig or any other main character sees a sign, is first heard reading it aloud, and when the character turns to him, he raises his glasses and says something along the lines of "I like to read" or "Reading is funducational".
  • Swanky the Poodle (voiced by Stephanie D'Abruzzo) is a poodle and Pig's love interest, who, luckily, gives Pig some attention. Swanky is owned by Lady Richington.
  • Great Scott (voiced by Ken Schatz) is a Scotsman, appearing after someone says the exclamation "Great Scott!" He was once accompanied by Holly Molly.
  • News Announcers: The duo of news announcers, one a neurotic, angry man called Hank (voiced by Ken Schatz) and the other a ditsy blond female called Betsy (voiced by Stephanie D'Abruzzo), who proclaim everything oh-so unrelated as a "related story".
  • Irv, the Studio Accountant (voiced by Joey Mazzarino) Forces, in order to lower show expenses, the narrator to make the sounds himself and re-directs Pig into escaping in the time machine because "so much time and money was put" into its building and re-construction.
  • The Sombrero Brothers are two untalented performers in Mexican attire whose act, "Flying Sombrero Brothers", is flying on a plane. Their names are Hector (voiced by Mo Willems) and Bill (voiced by Ken Schatz).
  • The Ranting Swede (voiced by Kevin Seal) is a Swedish man who rants about pianos, supermarkets, and a variety of other topics. His rants appear at the end of every single episode, except the final one, which is done in reverse order.
  • The Ranting Norwegian (voiced by Kevin Seal) is a Norwegian man who doesn't know much about ranting but instead talks about a car he recently got, and appreciates things rather than ranting about them. Unlike the Ranting Swede, he speaks much more softly and nicely, and also explains how the people in Norway do not have too much to rant about.
  • General Public (voiced by Jerry Nelson) is Private Public's father.

Episodes

Season 1 (2006-07)

  1. In the Pigeinning (September 10, 2006) (1APC01#)
  2. Be Still My Oinking Heart (November 19, 2006) (1APC02#)
  3. To Oink or Not to Oink (November 26, 2006) (1APC04#)
  4. Belle of the Oink (December 3, 2006) (1APC03#)
  5. Home for the Piggy Days (January 7, 2007) (1APC05#)
  6. Can't Live Without Pork (January 28, 2007) (1APC06#)
  7. 15 Sausages of Fame (April 1, 2007) (1APC09#)
  8. Agony of De-Snort (May 6, 2007) (1APC07#)
  9. Pig in Time (May 13, 2007) (1APC08#)
  10. Porked to Meet You (May 20, 2007) (1APC10#)
  11. A Star is Porked (September 30, 2007) (1APC11#)
  12. Mistaken Identity Porked (October 7, 2007) (1APC13#)
  13. To Meat, Perchance to Dream (October 14, 2007) (1APC14#)
  14. Going Off the Pork End (October 21, 2007) (1APC15#)

Season 2 (2008)

  1. Wish you Were Porked (January 13, 2008) (1APC12#)
  2. Porkened Times (January 20, 2008) (1APC16#)
  3. Pork Up the Sky (January 27, 2008) (2APC01#)
  4. How Pork Has Changed (February 3, 2008) (2APC02#)
  5. Party of the Meat (February 10, 2008) (2APC03#)
  6. The Pork of the People (February 17, 2008) (2APC04#)
  7. Daddy Porkest (February 24, 2008) (2APC06#)
  8. Sausages are Not Enough (March 2, 2008) (2APC07#)
  9. Beauty and the Pigs (April 20, 2008) (2APC05#)
  10. Officer and the Gentlehog (April 27, 2008) (2APC08#)
  11. Oh, the Pork-manity (May 4, 2008) (2APC09#)
  12. Here Goes Porking (May 11, 2008) (2APC10#)
  13. Pig-hind the Scenes (series finale) (May 18, 2008) (2APC11#)

International broadcast

United States

United Kingdom

  • FX (2007-September 2009)
  • E4 (2008-2010)
  • T4 (2008) (dropped from weekday holiday schedule just after 4 episodes from Season 1 due to low ratings)
  • 4Music (2010) (only during summer holidays) (Season 1 only and post-watershed broadcasts at 12.30am)

Availability

The first season was available on iTunes. However, it was taken off of iTunes for unknown reasons. In the UK, 3 episodes (excluding the pilot) have been released on a DVD but as of 2011, the DVD was removed from Amazon.com.

External links

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