Have you ever wondered why no one ever wrote a comic book or did an animated TV series around a stripper who also was a crime fighter? I mean seriously, what a great idea that would be, right? Or maybe not. I don’t know. But hold on, what if it was the idea of one Stan Lee, arguably the most famous cartoonist of all time, the Man at Marvel Comics, and the guy that was totally or at least partially responsible for Spider-Man, the Hulk, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Doctor Strange, Daredevil, Thor, the X-Men, and many, many other characters. And then what if Stan Lee teamed up with Pamela Anderson and they called it Stripperella, the story of a superhero stripper.
Get it? She is a stripper by day, but at night she is a superhero who fights crime. Or maybe it was supposed to be the other way around. Wouldn’t a stripper work at night? But then, I guess there isn’t much crime in the day. It seems complicated already. But anyway, that is the story; she is hot, she is a stripper, and she fights crime. Cool right?
Well, sort of. Stripperella only lasted for 13 episodes before it was cancelled, and part of the reason that it went down in flames was because Stan Lee was being sued by a stripper who says she came up with the idea while giving him a lap dance. Stan, say it ain’t so. Here are 15 things you did not know about Stripperella.
15. She Had Superpowers
So she is a superhero, right? Then she must have some super powers. Oh yeah she does. Some of her powers include enhanced reflexes (Okay, that does not sound all that impressive) and senses, intelligence, superhuman strength, she can jump really high, and she is an expert in martial arts. I know that does not sound all that impressive, but hey she is a stripper, what more do you really want? She also says she is impervious to different extreme weather conditions and has a bunch of cool gadgets she can use. Oh yeah, and she can use her hair as a parachute. Okay, so she does not sound all that tough, but hey, have you checked out her pole dancing? You can overlook a lot of things as long as there is a good pole dance on the way.
14. Stan Lee
As previously mentioned Stripperella was created by Stan Lee, and if you are into comics in any way shape or form, Stan Lee is the absolute man. He is probably the most influential person that ever worked in the comics industry, and was long the president and chairman of Marvel Comics. So needless to say, if Stan Lee wants to get something done, then it pretty much gets done, even if it is a cartoon about a stripper who is a superhero. There are only a few things that Stan Lee has ever done that has died a quick death and Stripperella is one of them. I am sure that if you mention this show to Stan Lee now he will just pretend that he does not know what you are talking about; but hey, he is well into his 90s now, so he can get away with that.
13. Pamela Anderson
Pamela Anderson is still incredibly famous and at one point was thought of as one of the hottest, if not the absolute hottest, women in the world. She is famous for many things including being a Playboy Playmate of the Month, and being the star of Baywatch. At one point pretty much every high school boy in America had a poster of her on his bedroom wall. So like I said, Pamela Anderson was famous for many things, but one thing she is not famous for was Stripperella. It doesn’t make a lot of sense anyway. No offense to Pamela, but what good is she really if you can’t see what she looks like? It is not that people tune in to hear her voice. Using Pamela Anderson as a voice actress totally misses the entire point of pretty much everything.
12. Her Brother Is Chipperella
She has a brother on the show named Chipperella who is played by Jon Cryer. He also is a stripper who is a superhero. I have to tell you that this is not nearly as hot thinking about a guy doing this as it is thinking about a woman. In fact, I don’t even like thinking about it at all. The writers of the show seemed to think the same thing as he doesn’t appear much at all, but rather mostly in a flashback. He goes by Chip. Which pretty much makes sense, because who would possibly go by the name Chipperella? This whole “male stripper and superhero named Chipperella” thing is maybe a bit of a tip off as to why this show did not last for that long, but hey I am in favor of anything that gives Jon Cryer some more work.
Stripperella was picked up by Spike TV and aired in the spring of 2003. As was previously mentioned it lasted only one season with just 13 episodes. It was described by those associated with the show as not being raunchy, but there were a lot of fairly sexual jokes and some topless nudity which Spike TV blurred out. Spike TV is known for putting some shows on TV that push the envelope a bit and this show was no exception. At the time Spike TV was trying to change things up with more adult programming of a certain type. They had other original animated series like This Just In! and Gary the Rat, and were running reruns like Baywatch, V.I.P. and The A-Team, and shows like The 100 Most Irresistible Women.
10. It Was Seen Around The World
Stripperlella may not have been all that successful, but it was international. Even though it was not around long, for a while it was shown all over the world, and I do mean that in the literal sense. It could be seen in Australia, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Latin America and in Brazil as well as many other countries. This goes to show you what name value means to a show. Do you think if Stan Lee and Pamela Anderson were not involved with this that it would have been seen everywhere all over the world? I think not, as those two are major league all the way. There is no doubt that when it came out, a lot of hype was surrounding it, why else would it have been shown in so many countries?
9. It Had Some Famous Voice Actors
The show had more than a few famous voice actors participate in its short time on the air; the two most famous were probably Jon Cryer, who was known for appearing in a bunch of teen movies, in particular Pretty in Pink, and then for being Charlie Sheen’s foil in Two and a Half Men. Another famous actor that appeared was Mark Hamill, who you know better as Luke Skywalker of course. I never really understood the whole appeal of hiring famous actors to do voiceover work. I mean I know why they do it, because that is what makes a certain group of people watch the show, and hey, Mark Hamill has rent to pay too, so more power to him, but do we really care all that much who is doing the voices on cartoons?
8. Vince McMahon
If you are a fan of TheRichest, and I imagine that you are since you are reading this article, then you no doubt know who Vince McMahon is. He is the man purely responsible for making the WWE into the billion dollar business that it is today. But you probably did not know that he was a voice actor for a character on Stripperella. Oh, but he was. He voiced the owner for the the main competition of TenderLoins, which was a strip club called Silicones. The character he played was named Dirk McMahon. I wonder how long it took for them to come up with that name. Pretty creative I have to say- how much do these guys get paid to write this stuff anyway? McMahon basically keeps trying to get Stripperella to work at his club.
7. Spongebob Was On The Show
Well no, not really. Spongebob was not actually on it, how weird would that be? Not to mention a little bit creepy, too. It actually was the actor Tom Kenny who is the voice of Spongebob as well as many other characters including Heffer Wolfe in Rocko’s Modern Life , the Ice King in Adventure Time, the Mayor in The Powerpuff Girls, Dog in CatDog, and Spyro from the Spyro the Dragon franchise. Kenny used to be a really funny stand up comedian before he started doing voices, but now he seems pretty settled into what he does. In fact, he is obviously a bit of a huge star in the voice world. How cool would that be? To be rich and make a living acting and yet never have anyone recognize you in the real world?
6. She Works At A Place Called TenderLoins
She works at Tenderloins? Really? Yes, really. Stripperella works at a club called TenderLoins which is owned by wimpy owner Kevin, who is played by Tom Kenny, and has a feminine bartender named Leonard, who is voiced by Maurice LaMarche. Of course, there are other dancers on the show: the flirty Persephone, played by Sirena Irwin, and the sweet country girl Giselle. There is also a new member, named Kat, who gets the job by pretending to be a virgin who is also Amish. Honestly, this sounds pretty much like every strip club I have ever been to. Now all that is really needed is a couple of hugely drunk guys who think the strippers like them for real and are not just doing a job for money.
5. Recurring Villains
Every show like Stripperella needs to have some bad guys, and this one was no exception. The show lasted for such a short time that there are only two recurring villains. One is named Cheapo, who is played by Maurice LaMarche- he is known as the world’s cheapest bad guy. The other one is Queen Clitoris (pronounced kli-TOR-is) who is played by Sirena Irwin; she spends much of her time flipping out on those around her because society does not deem her pretty enough. Now I wish I was joking about the Queen Clitoris name, but I am not. It makes one wonder, not for the first time, when this show was being discussed, what the hell were these people thinking? I mean the whole “it’s so bad it’s good” thing only goes so far.
4. There Were Only 13 Episodes
The show only lasted for 13 episodes before it was all over. A good example of the episodes was the very first one which was called “Beauty and the Obese.” It’s described thusly: “In the premiere episode, Stripperella must face-off against her first threat, Dr. Cesarean, a plastic surgeon who’s injecting beautiful models with deadly implants that make them gain weight and become obese.” So you can already sort of get the vibe of this show. Not quite the most politically correct thing you are ever going to come across. But hey, it is a show called Stripperella, about a superhero stripper. I mean come on now, what were you expecting to see, a cartoon version of War and Peace? I think not.
3. Comic Book
At one point there was going to be a comic book made of this whole thing; I mean that is what Stan Lee does, right? But this was not going to be from Marvel, it was supposed to be a promotional cartoon that was going to be put out by a company called Humanoids publishing. It never got off the ground because of some difficulties between SpikeTV and Pamela Anderson. This is kind of too bad, because as much as the TV show was a bit fraught with problems, a comic book sounds kind of cool, not to mention it is the medium with which Stan Lee has had the most success. Hey, maybe Marvel would put it out now? Actually, that is highly doubtful, but we can always dream.
2. A Real Life Stripper Sued Stan Lee
In 2003, a stripper named Janet Clover filed a lawsuit against Viacom (which owns SpikeTV), Stan Lee, and Pamela Anderson. The basis of her suit is that she came up with the idea for Stripperella and Stan Lee stole her idea when she told him about it during a lap dance. Okay first of all, who talks during a lap dance? Shush. The lawsuit was covered by the Associated Press, People and Entertainment Weekly. This whole scene was obviously a tad embarrassing for Stan Lee, not just because he was accused of stealing someone’s idea, but also because he was an old dude getting a lap dance. And not only getting a lap dance, but getting one from some chick who is talking to him about a TV show while doing it. Just bad news all around.
1. It Did Not Last Long
The show died a quick and somewhat sad death. Supposedly the reasons for its demise were creative differences, as well as the pending lawsuit. It is kind of a drag that it went down the way it did, as sometimes a campy show like this can be really awesome, but not in the case of Stripperella. It will go down as one of the bigger mistakes that Stan Lee ever made, but even with the ridiculous lawsuit, I doubt that he regrets it. I mean how could anyone ever possibly regret being a part of a show called Stripperella? I know I wouldn’t. So now all we have left are memories of a show that was the best thing ever made about stripper superheroes. And yes, it is also the only thing ever made about stripper superheroes.
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