Created By: Bob Schooley & Mark McCorkle
No. of Seasons: 4
No. of Episodes: 87 (Including 2 Made-For-TV Films)
Original Channel: Disney Channel
Original Release: June 7, 2002 – September 7, 2007
I’ll admit, I originally did not care for the cartoon Kim Possible or its titular character. It was a cartoon whose art-style I didn’t initially care for nor was it one to feature characters that I expected to like let alone willingly spend time watching given the commercials I had seen. Then, I watched the first episode and SNAP! I was hooked.
The show focuses on the adventures of a teenage crime-fighter named Kim Possible alongside her partner/sidekick Ron Stoppable as they deal with worldwide, family, and school issues on a daily basis. Kim follows her family creed of “Nothing is impossible for a Possible!” to the extreme and is… not quite a mercenary per-say but does offer her services to anyone who is in need of them, oftentimes using a simple “back-scratching” system of payment. This is commonly seen in the form of how Kim and Ron travel across the globe via Kim having done some sort of feat in the aid of the transporter in a prior mission and is being paid back for it via a free lift.
In actuality, the show is filled with many such running gags or themes throughout it and contrary to most, they don’t ever seem to get old. While one can immediately guess that Kim did the driver a favor at some point or another, it’s what the favor actually is that leaves one guessing and at times wanting for more than a brief explanation. Case in point was a man who gave her a lift in thanks for her saving her chicken farm from a mudslide. Her response was that it was just one of the many reasons she carried a cordless hairdryer.
I believe it was said it a very popular abridged series, “What—? Why—? How—? I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS!”
Unfortunately, like a number of Disney cartoons before and since, the intro to Kim Possible suffers from being a clip show of scenes and snippets from across the first season with only a minor change or three occurring in the final season. Despite this though, the song itself is incredibly good and the usage of Kim’s “Kimmunicator” ringtone is a well-played move at making it one of the most distinctive sounds in history.
Once several friends and I were hanging out at a local café, someone’s phone began to ring to that exact tone. More than a few of us had nearly jumped out of our seats half expecting to hear a familiar redhead ask, “What’s the sitch?” Even now, so many years later, I can still instantly recognize that ringtone for what it is and from where it originated.
The premiere episode of the series, aptly named “Crush” is one that sets up everything that we need to know about Kim, Ron, and several other major characters in the series ranging from Wade their tech supplier, runner of Kim’s website and modes of transportation, to Bonnie Rockwaller, Kim’s rival and a major bully to Ron and anyone else low on the popularity food-chain. It is also the, not quite-premiere of Kim’s chief arch foe and villainous rival, Dr. Drakken and Shego respectively.
As far as first episodes go, this one is one that I firmly believe is what inspired the formula found in Danny Phantom or Steven Universe wherein we see and learn about the characters via the idea that we already know what we need to know about them but if we want to learn more, we’ve got to watch later episodes to discover the rest. It is equal parts refreshing and ungodly frustrating in all honesty because much as I am willing and able to suspend my disbelief, there are some questions that really ought to get answered on the get go.
As to my favorite episode of the series, that comes in the form of episode 53 found in the third season called “Emotion Sickness.” Another ploy of Dr. Drakken involves an “electron magneto accelerator” and in the ensuing fight, both Shego and Kim Possible unwittingly have another device attached to them. Aptly named “Moodulators” these devices, as their name might suggest, affects one’s mood and Ron, having accidentally picked up the controller by mistake, only unwittingly makes the situation worse and better, depending on one’s point of few.
As one might guess, both Kim and Shego go through some startling mood-swings as the controller is constantly being fiddled around with either by Ron or a few others whom assume it’s a video game of some sort. What makes the situation particularly hilarious though is how he and Drakken react with Drakken being outright befuddled and more than a little bit scared, to a point where he actively hides under the table sucking his thumb, or in Ron’s case, concerned that the world was ending.
Of course, the real gem in the episode comes from when Ron changes the mood to “love” and both Kim and Shego actively pursue their respected men with a frightening fervor. Now, to be fair though, this device is not like some sort of drug and alternator as its name implies. It is a mood enhancer meaning that it takes the littlest emotion at the time and enhances it to extreme levels.
A few examples of this include Kim being mildly disappointed at the loss of another Kimmunicator to outright bawling at its loss. When her mood is switched to anger, she is indeed angry with Ron for the loss but not to such an extreme that she would hurt him in any way, physically or emotionally though there was more than a wee bit of manhandling involved.
When her emotions were switched to love, Kim still acted very much like her self but was far more outgoing in her pursuit of Ron’s returned affections. Case in point, literally acrobatic ninja-ing her way across the school as he tried to outrun her and tricking him into asking her out for the school festival. It was an episode that showed that no matter what kind of mood a person is in, they can still be themselves and that no matter how strongly they may feel, be it rage, despair, or love, the heart is always true to itself.
That and Ron’s reactions to everything, particularly Kim’s dress for the festival, were just hilarious.
To date, Kim Possible is one of the few Disney cartoons to do, if you’ll pardon my horrendous pun, the impossible not just once but twice. In the first instance, it is the sole Disney cartoon series, and honestly one of the few that I know of, to receive an additional season due in no small part to the ginormous demand from the fans. It took a little over two years but the fourth season was made despite the clear-cut ending that was the original finale and one of the two made-for-television films So the Drama!
The second instance of utter impossibility has been done a second since then but given that Kim Possible beat them to the punch, I’ll still give it, and her, the gold in this regard. For a time, there was a… attraction of sorts at one of the theme parks of Walt Disney World, specifically Epcot and its World Showcase. In essence, it was an interactive adventure where kids would undertake a scavenger hunt via one of the series staple “Kimmunicator” devices to help Kim and Ron solve a crime and/or stop an evil-doers plans for global domination.
This attraction was made in 2009 and lasted until May of 2012. This attraction was made not only two years after the cartoon series from which it was based ended but lasted an additional three years on its own merit and was only loosely adjusted for characters whom are currently still airing on television. I guess Mr. Possible was right after all.
Nothing is impossible for a Possible.