Beavis and Butt-head

MTV - Music Television



User Score: 854

Beavis and Butt-head
out of 10
User Rating
2,307 votes

By Users

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 12/29/2011

Season 9 : Episode 12

Show Summary

Beavis and Butt-head was first aired on the U.S. cable network MTV in March 1993. This show, which combined animation and music videos, was an example of the unique programming that MTV has consistently provided for its youthful demographics. The half-hour program alternated between a simple narrative, which focused on the exploits of two low-life adolescents, and clips from music videos, which the two teens commented on. Creator Mike Judge had penned the aimless duo for a festival of animation when Abby Turkuhle, MTV's senior vice president picked up an episode for the network's animated compendium Liquid Television. MTV immediately contracted for 65 episodes from Judge, with Turkuhle as producer, and placed Beavis and Butt-head in the 7:00 and 11:00 P.M. week-day time slots. The characters, Beavis and Butt-head, are rude, crude, and stupid, and can be placed in the "dumb comedy" tradition, which includes Abbott and Costello, The Three Stooges, Cheech and Chong, Saturday Night Live's Wayne and Garth, and FOX's The Simpsons. When the show debuted, television critics differed in their opinions, with some praising the show for daring to present the stupidity of male "metalheads" who watch too much television (effectively satirizing the core MTV audience), and others categorizing Beavis and Butt-head as another example of television's declining quality. Beavis and Butt-head did find an audience and began pulling in MTV's highest ratings. But the show was also quite controversial, instigating heated public debate on the interconnected issues of representations of violence in the media and generational politics surrounding youth subcultures. Beavis and Butt-head they found, was especially popular with those in their twenties. It turned out to be bothersome to many that young people enjoyed the show and laughed at its two imbecilic boys, even if these fans were much more intelligent and much less grating than Beavis and Butt-head. In this sense, Beavis and Butt-head raised the issue of generational taste cultures. Definitions of "taste," Pierre Bourdieu notes, "unite and separate, uniting those who are the product of similar conditions but only by distinguishing them from all others. And taste distinguishes in an essential way, since it is the basis of all that one has--people and things--and of all that one is for others, whereby one classifies oneself and is classified by others." To the degree that taste cultures agree, they are brought together into a subcultural formation; but to this degree they are also separated from those with whom they differ. It was the "bad taste" of Beavis and Butt-head's audience which bothered many, and this brings to the surface another one of the reasons why Beavis and Butt-head was so controversial. Cultural critics, educators, and concerned parents gathered skeptically, sternly, and anxiously in front of the television set and passed judgment upon the "tasteless" Beavis and Butt-head show. And in an ironic reversal, Beavis and Butt-head countered by ascending the cultural hierarchy. The two youths channel-surfed, looking for videos that didn't suck (i.e. those with heavy metal or hardcore rap, those that contained violence, or encouraged genital response.) In becoming the self-proclaimed Siskel and Ebert of music video, they served to evaluate pop culture with an unencumbered bottom line--does a music video "suck" or is it "cool?" Beavis and Butt-head as a television show, was certainly towards the lower end of traditional scales of cultural "quality." But these two animated "slackers" evaluated other media, and so pronounced their own critical opinions and erected their own taste hierarchies. Beavis and Butt-head had their own particular brand of "taste:" they determined acceptability and unacceptability, invoking, while simultaneously upending, notions of "high" and "low" culture. In this, they entered that hallowed sphere of criticism, where they competed with others in overseeing the public good and preserving the place and status of artistic evaluation. They disregarded other accepted forms of authority, refusing to acknowledge their own limited perspectives. But like other critics, this was an important part of their appeal. After all, critics are sought out for straightforward opinion, not muddled oscillation. In this recuperation of the critical discourse, Beavis and Butt-head joined with their audience, approximating the contradictory impulses of contemporary cynical youth, who mixed their self-delusion with self-awareness. In the case of fans of Beavis and Butt-head, these lines of demarcation indicated both a generational unity and the generation-based barriers between the baby boomers and the "baby busters." The reputed cynicism of the "twentynothings" was on view as Beavis and Butt-head evoked both a stunted adolescence which was long past and an unsure and seemingly inaccessible future.

Adam Welsh

Adam Welsh


Guy Maxtone-Graham

Guy Maxtone-Graham

Various Voices

Mike Judge

Mike Judge

Beavis/Butt-head/Principal McVicker/Tom Anderson/David Van Driessen/Bradley Buzzcut/Additional Characters (voice)

Chris Phillips

Chris Phillips

Various Voices

Toby Huss

Toby Huss

Various Voices

Kristofor Brown

Kristofor Brown

Various Voices

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Fan Reviews (176)

  • It has its moments, but not enough.

    The show has positive and negative stuff in it. The show has had quite a bit of controversy here and there but still, you`ll find it enjoyable at its best and feel like you have to watch it at its worst. You may also not like the intelligance level Beavis and Butthead have, but then again, even the dumbest guy in the room full of smart people says the smartest thing now and then. However, I think the show unintentionally poked fun at people with mental problems. It was pretty clear Beavis and Butthead ha a disability but none of the adults even aknowlaged this.moreless
  • I just couldn't get into it.

    I don't hate this show, but I don't like it either. The animation is sub par and the characters are dumber than shit. The show does have it's moments than make me laugh or chuckle, but overall the show is just meh. It's basically just two teenage dumbasses with the ugliest faces, doing crazy shit. If you like this show, that's fine but it's just not the show for me. I prefer regular show.moreless
  • Crazy

    This show is weird stupid crazy ***ed non kid friendly but yet its just and a fucking good show and i cant help but watch every episode
  • I guess it's decent for something not music on MTV

    When I first watched this show, I thought it was gonna be complete garbage, but it's actually ok. nothing special, but ok.
  • Beavis and Butthead can claim the prize of "Stupidest Cartoon Characters", but they can also claim "Most Hilarious Cartoon Characters". An excellent satire of the then-stereotypes of MTV viewers.

    Picture this - it was the 90s. The Simpsons had only just proven to the world that animation could be enjoyable for adults as well as children again. Then, MTV started airing Beavis and Butthead - a show which satirised said channel's stereotyped core audiece as drop-out teen metalheads who thought jokes about body parts were funny. Long story short, the show gained high ratings and became one of the best things to come out of the 90s.

    Beavis and Butthead focuses on the titular idiots, who go around town having mad adventures, trying to score with chicks in the process. Usually, there would be music video segments halfway through the episodes, where the duo would comment on whatever annoyed, amused or scared them on said music videos.

    The characters are hilarious. Beavis and Butthead are so stupid, it's funny. Whenever an episode involves Beavis on a pressure chair, the duo trying their best not to laugh all day, or Beavis getting cut by a machine with exaggerated pools of blood, you'll end up finding them utterly hilarious. (Quote: "I am Cornolio!"). The minor characters can also hold their own too.

    The animation may look sketchy and crude, but it hasn't aged a bit since it first aired. If anything, Stylistic Suck is in play here.

    Sadly, the music video segments were removed from VHS and DVD releases (Copyright... *rages*), but from what I found easily on YouTube, they're just as funny as the episodes themselves.

    Beavis and Butthead is a true cult classic and a sparlking gem from the 90s. Watch an episode on YouTube if you have the time - if you can put up with crude humour, you won't regret it.moreless

    What's Renewed, What's Canceled, and What's Still In Between? (2012 Edition)

    We'll continue to update this story as more renewals and cancellations announced, so be sure to bookmark this page and check back often for updates.


    What to Watch Tonight: Happy New Year, Charlie Brown, Beavis and Butt-head, and the New Syfy Series Three Inches

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    More Info About This Show


    issues with authority, for cynics, 90s, dumb friends, frat guy humor