By: Gabrielle McLaren, Editor-in-Chief
Tuca (Tiffany Haddish) is a loud, easygoing, unemployed toucan whose best friend 5ever is a socially anxious, bakeaholic songbird, Bertie (Ali Wong). They have little in common other than that they’re both scrambling to pretend they’re functional adults, as Tuca moves out of the apartment they’ve shared for Bertie’s lovable boyfriend Speckles (Steven Yeun) to move in. In other words: Tuca & Bertie is your life, or what it would be if you were a bird.
The animation style is immediately recognizable as that of BoJack Horseman, and sure enough, it’s driven by a lot of the same talent and energy. However, I found Tuca & Bertie to be somehow even more surreal, both in its plot and in the attention to detail that’s clear in its fun animated setting.
This is the first summer that I’m spending away from my best friend, who’s busy washing windows on the other side of the country. I thought of her a billion times while watching Tuca & Bertie, despite the fact that we are both very different from the show’s titular characters. This brings me to the real strength of the show: its powerful portrayal of strong friendships that endure the growing pains of everyday life.
The show has more of a feminist feel to it than its animated counterpart BoJack Horseman, due greatly in part to its well-developed female protagonists and their nuanced arcs. Tuca & Bertie tackles women’s issues, from workplace harassment to rape culture to slut shaming, with incredible tact and empathy. Overall, I thought this show and its characters were more relatable.
As I spend the summer without my own better half, Tuca & Bertie was the relatable, hilarious, and heartwarming cartoon I didn’t know I needed.
Best For: BoJack lovers, animation fans, and fans of Friends who need to watch new shows about friendship.