Over The Garden Wall

Over The Garden Wall is a delightful example of animated storytelling that came out in 2014 on Cartoon Network. The mini-series takes the viewer outside of familiarity and into the unknown, over the garden wall. The design of the characters and setting contribute well to the feelings of exploration, unfamiliarity, and wonder. The main characters Wirt and Greg are made appealing through simple shape based designs and colorful palletes, the viewer can also relate to them through their charming voice acting and humorous dialogue.

On the other hand the setting we are journeying through with them is mysterious and foreboding, backgrounds are dark and covered in shadows.

This contrast in design helps to highlight the feeling of the central characters being outside of their element.

The story is episodic in nature but with the overarching plot of the boys trying to return home. Each episode introduces new characters they encounter and provides fresh conflicts that the characters must resolve. A lot of the story appeal comes from the characterizations, and the way the boys react to their situation.

Example of Greg’s amusing dialogue

The movement of the animation is also positive, despite not being overly complex. The staging of the scenes, anticipation before actions, and exaggeration create easy to read motions even in more movement heavy chase scenes.

Notice the characters looking at objects before using them, the platform rumbling before breaking, etc