The long running era of the Saturday morning cartoon has officially ended, but no one can stop you from fulfilling your true weekend calling. Cartoons and Saturday mornings were made for each other and no one can tell us otherwise. It is to that end that we maintain vigil, bringing you animated selections each Saturday morning until the internet dies, or until we run out, good thing there’s always reruns.
"God, the Devil, and Bob” Created by Matthew Carlson; Directed by Dan Fausett, Sherie Pollack, Steve Ressel, Swinton O. Scott III, and Jeff DeGrandis; Written by Matthew Carlson, Gary Murphy, Neil Thompson, and Alex Reid; Starring French Stewart, James Garner, Alan Cumming, Laurie Metcalf, Kath Soucie, Nancy Cartwright, and Jeff Doucette; Run time: 30 minutes; Originally aired March 9, 2000.
“God, the Devil, and Bob” begins with God taking a walk through modern civilization with the Devil. They seem to mostly have put their differences behind them and while they disagree with each other’s methods, they have a semblance of a friendship. When the devil makes an off handed comment saying, “Nice place you’ve created here,” in reference to a seedy back alley full of equally seedy characters, God realizes he has a point and laments that he’s considered wiping the board clean and starting fresh.
The Devil, understandably excited by this prospect encourages God in this line of thinking but God has second thoughts, he thinks maybe he ought to give humanity one last chance, but not wanting to pull the rug completely out from under the Devil’s feet, decides to make a deal. God will put off destroying all existence if a single soul can prove to him that humanity is redeemable, and because he’s so sporting he’s going to let the Devil choose the human being upon whose shoulders the fate of all existence shall rest.
Enter Bob Allman (Allman presumably to represent the everyman or all of man kind).
Bob (voiced by French Stuart) is an average guy, he works in an automobile plant in Detroit, drinks beer, argues with his wife, and struggles to connect with his children and he’s just recently met his maker.
Bob encounters the lord of hosts and the king of lies in a bar downtown, God is more than vague about what exactly Bob’s mission entails leaving him to figure out how to save humanity on his own, the Devil doesn’t offer much help either.
Bob trips, stumbles, falls, and at one point runs face first into the proverbial wall in his attempt to figure God’s cryptic instructions and save existence.
While this serves as the central plot and initial premise of the series, it isn’t drawn out, Bob is able to save the world by the end of the first episode simply by showing love and selfless affection to his daughter in a time of crisis. Thus, God calls off the apocalypse but tells Bob he isn’t finished with him yet.
The series dealt with philosophical and theological ideas while also poking fun at the apparent holes in religion.
The show didn’t live long, only a few weeks. A combination of low ratings and pressure from religious activists pushed a spear through its side and after four episodes it was finished. Activists killed “God, the Devil, and Bob” but forgive them, they knew not what they were doing.
After three days (or 11 years) the series rose again and was aired in completion on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim.