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Benji Takes A Dive At Marineland
Let’s take a minute to define absurd:
adjective: (of an idea or suggestion) wildly unreasonable, illogical, or inappropriate.
“the allegations are patently absurd”
synonyms: preposterous, ridiculous, ludicrous, farcical, laughable, risible, idiotic, stupid, foolish, silly, inane, imbecilic, insane, harebrained, cockamamie; unreasonable, irrational, illogical, nonsensical, incongruous, pointless, senseless; informal, crazy, daft
Used in a sentence? “The premise of this old television special is absurd!”
I remember watching Benji Takes A Dive At Marineland in 1981. And catching it over, and over, and over again on Showtime a few years later.
What can I say; I’m a sucker for this type of TV.
What was this made-for-TV special about? Read the headline: Benji takes a dive at Marineland.
Right, but it’s not that simple. They could have made this special a straight-up serious documentary that showcases the how, and the why, of Benji diving at Marineland.
While it is cool to see a dog in a scuba suit, it would have been boring. So they went right past that and made this into an actual scripted special.
This special does not have the earnest emotional tone of earlier Benji films. No, this one goes full out corny and odd, then turns those two levels up to eleven!
I’ll list the elements that make this amazing in no particular order:
Mermaid dog puppets (attracted to the star of the show, Benji, of course)!
Boss Hogg-like dog puppets!
The most wooden acting to ever be presented to a television audience!
Dolphins (not puppets)!
A ridiculously campy story line!
And… Diabolical Nazi dog puppets! Didn’t see that one coming, did ya?
Unfortunately, copies of the special which have been posted online from time to time have all be removed. So you will need to track down the full special in other places.
Still, some clips that capture the tone of the special do find their way online.
If you are wondering if Benji actually take a dive at Marineland? Here is the spoiler. You better believe he does.