Okay, so The OWCA Files aired, so I'll post my thoughts on it. To summarise, it's kind of in the same category of episodes as Act Your Age and Doof 101 for me - I overall thought it was decent and I enjoyed watching it, but it's pretty flawed, and definitely the weakest of the hour long specials Phineas and Ferb has produced (I know it's kind of its own thing, but still).
The biggest problem with the episode is that it tries to do too much - we can even see this on Joshua Pruett's twitter, where he lists LOADS of ideas they wanted to fit into the special but couldn't because of time constraints. For me, the biggest victim of this was Doofenshmirtz accidentally blowing up Perry's house - it didn't carry as much emotional weight as it should have, and the plot moves on from it fairly quickly. Sure, Perry still gets frustrated with Doof about it, but it doesn't feel like it really added much, not to mention it wasn't brought up at all
at the end. The most frustrating aspect of this subplot was the scene where Doof threw Perry's locket into the toilet... which never comes up again. At all
. Perry doesn't even find out! So basically, this means one of Doof's arcs is completely unresolved. I also felt like Parenthesis was underdeveloped, we literally skipped over him explaining his past to Monogram so even if PnF has had villains with silly motives in the past his didn't even feel fleshed out enough to be fully humorous. There was also lots of unused potential with stuff set up in Last Day of Summer, we could've seen Doof actually apply to be an agent as well as what Vanessa's internship was like, but instead the episode felt too
self-contained, which makes sense but with lines that are designed to foreshadow it's kind of disappointing.
There are some other issues too. For one, the bugs might have been funny, but their sublot felt unneeded, it kind of felt like an attempt at doing multiple plotlines like PnF usually does but even if they did influence the story in some parts, they felt like they could've been dropped for more interesting things such as resolving the Doof and and Flynn-Fletcher house subplot. The new rookie agents were also annoying at the start, though I like that they improved over the course of the episode. The plot also felt pretty predictable, which is unfortunate because this is supposed to be a departure from PnF's formulaic structure and give us something fresh. Also, in regards to cliche, the rookies all get promoted. Sure, the saved the OWCA, but still it feels kind of trite.
As I said though, I do like the special. It was pretty entertaining, despite its flaws. For one, there was a lot of good humour. This actually came from a lot of places, even the divisive Bugs. As pointless as they were, there were a lot of things I couldn't help but laugh at, like the splattering of them. Also Professor Parenthesis, even if he wasn't as fleshed out as one might've hoped, was pretty entertaining to watch, though I wonder why they decided to create such a campy villain.
There were also quite a few clever moments here and there like Doof using his knowledge of evil lairs to realise that the other agents were walking into a trap. Also there was some cool action scenes, especially with Karen at the end and tentacle robot Parenthesis (oh yeah, he's a flea inside an android, weird twist if you ask me), speaking of which I also thought Parenthesis' flea and battle design at the end looked pretty good. The songs weren't the best, but some of the score was nice and the theme music was pretty awesome (as well as the intro in general). The episode looked nice, too. My favourite part of the episode however was Carl and Monogram - they had a lot of the funniest and most enjoyable moments, and watching them work together was nice to see. Also, the part where not only Carl but Monogram admitting they enjoyed spending time together was pretty sweet.
So yeah, there's a lot to like, but there's also a lot to question. I don't usually like saying how I would do things differently, but I'll say it anyway - this special kind of feels like it simultaneously wanted to be a standalone episode but also function as a pilot to set up potential storylines, and it didn't really achieve either in my opinion. Here's what I would've done - Act Your Age should've been the last hour long special (it would make sense given it's an epilogue), and maybe give the remaining half hour slot to say another Second Dimension episode (or turn that into an extra hour long lolol, but I guess doing a two parter would be cool)? What they should've done with OWCA is made it a straight up miniseries, I think all of these ideas needed a lot of room to breathe, so if they didn't want to make it a full blown show then they could've just made a small series of episodes that could've been in a serialised format. That, or go smaller and make the OWCA stuff feature heavily in Save Summer, with the remaining half hour slot being for an episode that could set up everything (plus they could include the Vanessa and Monty resolution that was originally planned for it). I'm not too sure what the full plans were, but this is what I feel like may have worked better. Still, decent episode.
also one of the scrapped ideas was perry dying only for monogram to reveal that he had a bunker of agent p clones twitter.com/zombietardis/statu…
just what the hell