Welcome to another installment of Retro Weekend, the weekly feature where I play a classic game and get the chance to write whatever I want about it! This week, I took a funkified trip to planet Earth in ToeJam & Earl for the Sega Genesis and got the chance to jot down some bars about our adventure. On top of experiencing some pretty far out freaks, I got to jam to some sickly sweet tunes. Back to 1991, when the game was initially released, it was rare to find a soundtrack quite like ToeJam & Earl’s.
Thanks to our bro Earl, the three of us crash-landed on this really trippy planet called Earth. Okay, when I say “landed,” I really mean “our ship exploded into ten different pieces and we were booted from our ride in a real nasty fashion.” Way to go, Earl. I swear, we ain’t ever gonna let that fool drive again. Anyway, back to the current status. We can’t possibly continue space trippin’ without our ship, so we gotta find them pieces. Quick. Problem is, this planet’s totally wack.
The first day down here is rad. Earth is turning into a place I might have to vacation to in the coming years if today is the norm. I mean, there are presents just lying around, waiting for Earl, ToeJam, and I to just take! No questions asked. Free stuff? Sign me up. And it ain’t like your gram’s gifts either. We got some cool hi-tops that straight up made us run faster, some sweet spring boots that let us jump over huge chasms, and even…a floaty. I mean, I don’t need one, but you know TJ and Earl ain’t great swimmers, so it helped them out swimming through them big ponds. And the wildlife here ain’t so bad. I saw this devil looking thing but I smashed him with these tomatoes I got from a present and he just popped. Piece of cake.
Speaking of cake: damn, there’s some good food down here! I never heard of this stuff but let me tell you, cherry pie and hamburgers may be the greatest tasting things in this universe. Who knew we’d find it on such a remote planet as “Earth”? Then we had something called “root beer” and that was something else. It’s this liquid with some acid that really bubbles as it goes down, but it was still pretty awesome. Even if it gave us gas.
We’ve found a few parts so far, but this planet is starting to turn into a real drag. Flying babies are all trying to get us tripped up. ToeJam got hit with one of their arrows and straight up almost took a nose dive off the side of the level we were on! ToeJam, my man, you were almost a pancake, man. Then there’s these mailboxes that freaked out as soon as we rolled up. We didn’t even do anything. We were chill. Then the mailbox just went berserk on Earl and laid him out. I even had my foot ran over by this crazy, ugly, old hag pushing her screaming kid in a shopping cart. All they were doing was arguing but it was like they didn’t even get each other.
Still, the one redeeming quality about this pad is the tunes. They got all of us bumpin’ while we’re out here trying to piece together our ride. I mean, we’re from Funkotron. If the music isn’t bombastic, slammin’, and jammin’ then it ain’t worth our time. Somehow, this backwoods planet learned the secrets of making some sweet hits that we’d be proud to blast back home on Funkotron.
Funkotronic Beat – Now this is a jam right here. This is the kind of track that puts some style in my walk, some groove in my shoe. No matter what part of the song you hear, you’re listening to a genius at work. Then around that one minute mark, you get some scratches from the DJ in there that just tops it all off. Yeah, I’ll be copying this to a blank tape for the ride home back to Funkotron, for sure.
ToeJam Jammin’ – This is funky right here. This track is just organic, my man. It feels like the artist is just breathing, but instead of lungs, he’s got some banging drums, and rocking guitars. It’s old-school in a way, like when we took the instruments our ancestors back on Funkotron played and reworked them into our new, hip-hopping tunes.
Elevator Beat – Every single time we got into an elevator this fresh beat would greet us, almost congratulating us on our progress through this crazy world we called “Earth”. Sure, it’s pretty simplistic with a basic beat and rhythm behind it, but those cuts and scratches on top just bring the whole thing together into one slammin’ jam I want in my head.
So we’re still looking for the rest of these ship pieces. Earth is turning into a real drag with all these freaky freaks and trippy foes. I’m just happy that I got my bros ToeJam and Earl here with me or else I’d be flipping out. We’ve had some fun, and no matter how wacked out things get, we’ll stay chilled out and keep it smooth because that’s just how we roll. Earth ain’t the worst planet we’ve been to, but man, oh man, there’s no place like good old Funkotron.