Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Dexter's Laboratory (Dexter's Lab for short) is an American animated series which was created by Genndy Tartakovsky and first produced by Hanna-Barbera for Cartoon Network. Craig McCracken also worked on some episodes. The original pilot appeared as an episode of the series What-A-Cartoon!, featuring various cartoon shorts, and a series soon followed. The premise of the cartoon involves a short child genius named Dexter (originally voiced by Christine Cavanaugh, later Candi Milo), who has a secret laboratory connected to his bedroom. He is almost constantly in conflict with his ditzy, obnoxious older sister, Dee Dee.
Dexter's arch-nemesis is Mandark (voiced by Eddie Deezen), another child genius with an unusual evil laugh ("A-ha-ha! A-ha-ha-ha-ha!"). Often Mandark, through fraud or rarely by coincidence, gets credit for Dexter's achievements.
Also appearing regularly in the series are Dexter's mom and dad. There is little sense of continuity between episodes.
In addition to the series there is an hour-long special entitled , in which Dexter travels through time and meets several of his future selves. Ego Trip was originally supposed to conclude the series, but two additional seasons followed. The times of Ego Trip are 2000 (the year of Dexter's episodes), 2037, 2055 and 2070.
- Dexter - the central protagonist, creator and owner of the laboratory; red-haired. He speaks with an Eastern European or German accent which is not explained, as none of the other members of his family do.
- Dee Dee - Dexter's blond-haired older sister. Loves ballet, dolls, ponies and messing around in Dexter's laboratory. She is two to three times taller than Dexter and has peculiar body proportions; a minuscule torso with a large head and gangly limbs. Dexter once compared her to a stick and subsequently threw her to entertain a dog. Dee Dee's hair is always in bunches, which go upwards in a gravity defying manner. In the episode Double Trouble, Dee Dee's games with an X-ray machine reveal the secret – each bunch contains a bone. It is not revealed whether these are a genetic abnormality or a hair accessory.
- Mom - Dexter and Dee Dee's red-haired mom; a mysophobe who has trouble being around the rest of the family without her rubber gloves. Although a stereotypical housewife, a few episodes imply most of Dexter's personality comes from her, including their perfectionist streaks.
- Dad - Dexter and Dee Dee's blond-haired dad. Loves bowling, golf, fishing, and has an unnatural affinity for his wife's muffins (as one episode suggests).
- Mandark - Dexter's mind-reading arch-nemesis. Possibly equal in intelligence to Dexter, he too possesses his own laboratory. He has a crush on Dee Dee. He has a characteristic evil laugh "Haa-haha, Haa-haha-haha!". He was originally referred to as 'Astronomonov' (possibly his last name) though his true name was revealed 'Susan' (due to his hippy parents) after becoming a reoccurring character. In one episode called Dee Dee's Rival, it is revealed that he has a sister named La-la Astronomonov, but prefers to be called "La-la Lava". Despite it to be her only appearance in the show, it also reveals that she can exert control over her older brother if need be.
- Mr. Levinsky - Dexter's school teacher whom Dexter is eager to impress.
- Douglas Mordechai - Possibly Dexter's only friend apart from his computer. He attends school with Dexter and is similarly geeky.
- Quadraplex T-3000 computer - Dexter's computer that oversees the running of the lab and has a (female) personality of its own. Dexter refers to his computer as "my love".
- Robots - A number of unnamed robots assist Dexter in the laboratory.
- Lee Lee and Mee Mee - Dee Dee's friends. Nearly identical to Dee Dee, except that Mee Mee is black, and Lee Lee is Asian.
- Pony Puff Princess - Dee Dee's idol. (A horse or a unicorn, parody of My Little Pony)
- Koosalagoopagoop - A multi-colored dinosaur-like creature that originates from Dee Dee's imagination. Among imaginary friends, only Dee Dee and Bubbles from the Powerpuff Girls actually likes him.
- Monkey - Dexter's caged monkey which secretly has superpowers, unbeknownst to Dexter. Monkey has a self-contained series "Dial-M-for Monkey" where he has a human partner, the Avengers-inspired Agent Honeydew (What-A-Cartoon! short Dial M For Monkey).
- Quackor - Mandark's caged duck who also has superpowers, unbeknownst to Mandark.
- Windbear and Oceanbird - Mandark's hippy parents, who don't understand Mandark's love for evil and science. In Angie Yazdani 's upcoming episode, How Can I Make You Understand?, Mandark's parents are threatened by Mandark that he will destroy them if they call him "Susan"; they are forced to obey his every command.
- Action Hank - An action hero, similar to GI Joe. The name may be a pun on Action Man, a doll/character very similar to GI Joe. The character himself resembles Mr. T
- Major Glory - A superhero with a distinctly American philosophy. Curiously, in the world in which Dexter lives, superheroes like Major Glory and Action Hank exist both in fiction and reality at the same time. Major Glory has a self-contained series "Justice friends" with two superhero roommates, who are Vallhalen (a blend of the Mighty Thor with the rock'n'roll guitarist Eddie Van Halen) and Krunk (who is reminiscent of the Incredible Hulk).
The last two seasons of Dexter's Lab are disliked by many fans for the following reasons:
- The new art style.
- Genndy Tartakovsky having very little (if anything) to do with it.
- Characters' personalities were changed.
- Some characters had their name changed.
There are rumors that the unaired episode Dexter's Rude Removal might air on Adult Swim. So far, this hasn't been confirmed.
- Cartoon Network's Dexter's Laboratory site
- Dexter's Laboratory at the Big Cartoon DataBase
- The Dex Files - large list of facts and trivia for almost every episode of Dexter's Laboratory.
Dexter's Laboratory in other languages
- Chinese: 德克斯特的實驗室; dé kè sī tè ·de shí yàn shì; literally: "Dékèsītè's Lab"
- French: Le Laboratoire de Dexter
- Hebrew: המעבדה של דקסטר; Hama'abada Shel Dexter
- Italian: Il Laboratorio di Dexter
- Portuguese: O Laboratório de Dexter
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