“The Paranormal Idiot”: Comedy Central, here’s a flash-animation series for you!

By on June 9, 2015

One of the coolest things we’ve seen lately is The Paranormal Idiot, an animated dark comedy series which is sort of like a cross between “In Search Of,” “Ghost Hunters,” and MAD Magazine. It was co-created by Tom Barndt and Buddy Barnett, and produced by Tom Barndt, Buddy Barnett, Samara St. Croix, Mike Plante, Kathe Duba-Barnett, Brad Linaweaver, Javier Andy Zavala, Jr. and Stephen Barndt.

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The flash-animated series features likenesses and the voices of Buddy Barnett and his wife Kathe Duba-Barnett, her cousin Dean (son of the late comedian-singer Steve Rossi of the Allen & Rossi comedy team, famous in the 1960’s) and quite a few others.

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We spoke to Buddy’s wife Kathe Duba-Barnett — who is an actress and producer with an impressive IMDB page, known for her work on projects like The Vampire Hunters Club (2001), The Low Budget Time Machine (2003) and Decoupage 2000: Return Of The Goddess (1999), among others, and she also produced the TV series “Cult Movies TV,” featuring interviews with Forrest J. Ackerman and more — and she gave us a quick rundown of how The Paranormal Idiot came to be:

“Back in the ’90s, Buddy was Editor of Cult Movies Magazine, and has always been interested in the horror and sci-fi movie genres and the paranormal.

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We’ve known Tom for years and have worked with him on various film projects of his. He’s had his work screened at Sundance, AFI, CineVegas and SXSW. Buddy and I have also produced other film projects, some in the horror and sci-fi genres like Spacebabes Meet The Monsters, and Cult Movies TV.

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Buddy and Tom started talking about doing a new project together. Buddy wanted to do a ‘Ghost Hunters’ type show and Tom wanted to do something like ‘In Search Of’. It was originally going to be a live-action project, but animation gave us a chance to tell bigger stories and work with people remotely and on different schedules. The show is 2d animation done in Illustrator/PhotoShop/After Effects and Final Cut Pro.

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In The Paranormal Idiot, the cast is made up of friends and former collaborators as well as most of the producers. Everyone wears many hats. If someone commits to being a part of the show, they’re built in to the show literally as characters and not just a name on IMDb. It makes it more fun that way. The likeness of each cast member is based on them as well as using their own voices. Other actors/characters featured in the series are Dean Rossi, Mr. Lobo, Frank Mengwasser and Bill Chase.

The series deals with all things paranormal; there’s really no limitation on where this can go.

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As an aside, Dean Rossi’s dad and my uncle, was Steve Rossi of the comedy team famous in the 1960’s, Allen & Rossi, who opened on ‘The Ed Sullivan Show’ for the Beatles. I think his upbringing gives him his colorful personality.

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The pilot episode is complete and the rest of the season will be produced when a platform/outlet is secured.”

We here at Night Flight would like to see that happen as soon as humanly possible! Comedy Central, are you listening?

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About Bryan

Bryan Thomas has been a freelancing writer/critic for All Music Guide and a dozen other websites and zines, most of them long gone. He’s also worked for over twenty years at reissue record labels, and penned scads of liner notes -- prior to that he worked in bookstores and record stores, going all the way back to the original vinyl daze. He is now somewhat reclusive and bides his time quietly in his dusty Miracle Mile hermitage in Los Angeles, CA.