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The R-Rated Inspiration Behind Netflix's Agent Elvis

At this point, you'd have to be pretty out of touch to think that just because something on TV is animated, it's something that kids ought to be watching. There's plenty of animated material out there rated R or TV-MA, but it still might come as a bit of a surprise that the new Netflix animated series, "Agent Elvis," is inspired more by "Kill Bill" than "Superfriends."

"Agent Elvis" features the voice of Matthew McConaughey as the King of Rock and Roll, but in this incarnation the King gets up to a lot more than laying down gospel tracks and eating fried peanut butter and banana sandwiches. In one episode, an Empire preview feature of the show reveals, he goes up against the sinister Charles Manson in his fight against the forces of evil. And if that scenario reminds you of Quentin Tarantino's "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood," that's not exactly a coincidence, since the show's co-creator, John Eddie, says Tarantino is one of the show's principal points of inspiration.

The show is described by its co-creator as 'Elvis fighting crime as if it were directed by Quentin Tarantino'

John Eddie co-created "Agent Elvis" along with none other than the real Elvis Presley's real-life wife, Priscilla Presley. "We follow this 'Forrest Gump'-type timeline, where Elvis is involved in everything that's ever happened in history," Eddie said of the show. But it was famous "Gump" rival Quentin Tarantino who was part of Eddie's initial pitch, according to Eddie himself.

"I pitched it as Elvis fighting crime as if it were directed by Quentin Tarantino," he said. "Animated sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll." He went on to say, "It's not a kids' show by any means" — possibly stating the obvious.

Tarantino has a long history with Elvis. He once played one of an army of Elvis impersonators on an episode of "The Golden Girls," and in Tony Scott's "True Romance," which Tarantino wrote the script for, the King-worshipping hero Clarence (Christian Slater) receives advice from the ghost of Elvis (Val Kilmer). So an animated version of the rock star who fights evildoers taking inspiration from Tarantino isn't too much of a stretch.

The first season of "Agent Elvis" premieres on Netflix on March 17, 2023.