A DNA sequence must be missing to make The Croods sequel, New Age stand out. One problem is the time it took to make this animated film. Seven years, not including the Netflix prequel, is quite the long time. One issue is because of Universal Pictures’ acquiring the DreamWorks Animation and the uncertainty which resulted. The other is handing over the directorial reigns to story artist, Joel Crawford.
The translation of the family-adventure comedy film The Croods to a Netflix television sitcom, simply titled Dawn of the Croods, works well enough to sate fans of prehistory’s first dysfunctional family. To see them survive being turned from a 3D to hand drawn animation in Dawn of the Croods is great. The character designs are faithful to the film’s cave drawn intro. The two that stand out are Sandy (the youngest child, voiced by Grey Griffin), who takes after the eldest, Gran (Laraine Newman), in looks while Ugga (Cree Summer) — the matriarch — tries to keep the family together Flinstone’s style. She rarely gets livid, and the best episode of this lot is with the eighth episode, “Mom Genes.”
The later half of the 13 episode full-season release is far more engaging, and this series is amusing because the problems the Croods family has to deal with is typical for a modern nuclear family. There are moments where this series becomes reminiscent of Married…with Children meets Family Guy. Had the writers dealt with authentic problems cave people faced, one of them would have included how they turned from hunter gatherers to agrarian. They trade in meat instead of plants. Surprisingly, this concept is gently explored when the tween, Eep (now voiced by Stephanie Lemelin) decides to become vegetarian and tries to convince her family to switch in “The Garden of the Eaten.”