Spümcø

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Background

Spümcø, Inc. (or simply "Spümcø") was an American animation production company that was founded in 1988 by John Kricfalusi, along with Lynne Naylor, Bob Camp and Jim Smith. Shortly after that, the studio pitched its first production to Nickelodeon, The Ren & Stimpy Show, and premiered on August 11, 1991. In September 1992, Nickelodeon fired the company due to production delays and Games Animation (now "Nickelodeon Animation Studio") was formed shortly after; Camp left Spümcø and took over the production of the show. Years later, the company went on to produce other programs such as The Ripping Friends for Fox Kids and later brought back Ren & Stimpy under Ren & Stimpy's Adult Party Cartoon which premiered in June 2003 on TNN (now Paramount Network.)

On July 18, 2005, Kricfalusi shut down the studio shortly after a lawsuit was filed by Carbunkle Cartoons against it in the Canadian court system. In 2016, a Tumblr post made by former Cartoon Network storyboard artist Gabe Del Valle announced that he and Kricfalusi were reviving the studio as Spümtwø; however, Del Valle deleted the post after he was rehired by Cartoon Network. On March 4, 2017, Kricfalusi opened another studio called John K. Studios. However, after sexual harassment allegations against him were made, the website (and presumably the studio) was shut down in July 2018. In 2020, Nickelodeon Animation Studio announced they were working on a reboot of The Ren & Stimpy Show for Comedy Central without Kricfalusi's involvement. That year, Kricfalusi retired from animation.

1st Logo (August 10, 1990-May 23, 1993)


Visuals: Over a dark brown background, there is a drawing of a boy's head, drooling. On the top-left of the screen is the text "SPÜMCØ" in colorful letters with two yellow umlauts above the "U" , and a line in the "O". Underneath the company name is the slogan "The Danes call it "Quality"" in blue.

Trivia: The boy depicted is another one of John Kricfalusi's characters, named Jimmy the Idiot Boy. He was originally going to make a Nicktoon about this character but didn't want to lose the rights, so he used Ren and Stimpy instead. Jimmy would later be seen in Kricfalusi's other projects such as The G*ddamn George Liquor Program and The Ripping Friends, as well as various commercials and the video to the song "I Miss You" by Bjork.

Technique: Traditional ink and paint.

Audio: The ending theme. On the uncut version of "Big House Blues" pilot, a short guitar riff.

Availability: Seen on the first two seasons of The Ren & Stimpy Show.

Legacy: Well remembered amongst fans of The Ren & Stimpy Show, though John Kricfalusi's controversies did taint the logo for some.

2nd Logo (October 15, 1997-1998)

Visuals: On a sky blue background, an aqua-colored arrow moves to the right and comes down. A light yellow star then appears diagonally from the left of the arrow. "SPÜMCØ" then slides in from the right onto the arrow, and "presents" appears in the same font in purple inside a white circle below the arrow.

Technique: Flash animation.

Audio: None.

Availability: Appeared on John Kricfalusi's web cartoon, The G*ddamn George Liquor Program.

3rd Logo (September 22, 2001-October 20, 2004)


Visuals: Against a light blue/dark yellow background, three of John Kricfalusi's characters (Jimmy the Idiot Boy from the first logo, Sody Pop, and George Liquor) are seen on the right side of the screen behind a light yellow starburst, and in the same font as the first logo is the word "SPÜMCØ" on the top corner of the screen.

Technique: Digital ink and paint.

Audio: The end theme of the show.

Availability: Appeared on the infamous Ren and Stimpy: "Adult Party Cartoon" and The Ripping Friends. Neither air on TV anymore, but the former is on DVD as The Lost Episodes. This was also seen on the video game Go! Go! Hypergrind.

Legacy: This logo has an infamous reputation for not only John Kricfalusi's controversies, but also due to its usage on (and association with) Ren & Stimpy: "Adult Party Cartoon".