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The Forgotten Adult Swim Comedy You Need To Binge On HBO Max

It's a long story, but a good one: in 1966, Hanna-Barbera was doing what Hanna-Barbera did best, pumping out endless animated content while they waited for Paul Stanley to mature to the point where they could put out their magnum opus, "KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park." Among their stable of cartoons was "Space Ghost," the story of a cosmic superhero from Ghost Planet, fighting crime across the stars with his teen sidekicks and their monkey. His enemies were many — there was Zorak the seven-foot mantis, Moltar the lava-obsessed super scientist, and Brak, a spacefaring pirate who was, to the best of anyone's ability to determine, some kind of a cat guy.

Months turned to years and years to decades. Space Ghost and his rogues gallery became largely-forgotten relics of a bygone era when shows about flamboyantly dressed adult men living with kids and a monkey were still family entertainment and not the premise of "Leaving Neverland." Despite a brief revival in the '80s and DC's straight-faced shot at giving the character a gritty reimagining in 2005, Space Ghost's permanent claim to fame remains the show that, in many ways, pioneered the age of Adult Swim: "Space Ghost Coast to Coast," Cartoon Network's almost unbelievably low-budget animated talk show that began in 1994 and saw the eponymous hero interviewing the likes of Danny Bonaduce, Carrot Top, and Beck. As a result of the program's success, spin-offs were ordered, including one that's finally finding its audience on HBO Max — "The Brak Show."

The Brak Show, brak at it again

"The Brak Show" officially debuted with the dawn of Adult Swim in 2001, following a pair of Brak-centric variety show one-offs under the title "Brak Presents the Brak Show starring Brak," which were largely unrelated once you put aside all the Brak. In his new format, Brak was presented as the teenaged son of Mom, a fellow cat-person alien thing, and Dad, a middle-aged human gentleman.

In the early days, the show revolved around classic sitcom tropes. Brak might try to raise money for a good cause by putting on a musical, or get bummed out when his doll gets taken away. From there, everything tended to get more and more enthusiastic for cocoa puffs — the musical that Brak puts on is half "Oklahoma," half Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho." Brak's replacement doll turns out to be demonically possessed. It only got weirder with time, too. The second season features an episode in which Brak's dad makes him go to his room for three years for making his knees cry. If Adult Swim comedy is up your alley, this show has everything you're looking for.

With just three seasons totaling fewer than 30 episodes of 11 minutes each, "The Brak Show" isn't going to take up your whole weekend. It will, however, swallow up your afternoon the next time you open HBO Max. Brace yourself, it's braknanas.