I wouldn't call myself much of a fan of the "old Nickelodeon". I think that the era was just okay at best. I understand that the quality has gone downhill nowadays, but I don't like something just because it's from a golden age, or just because it's from the 90s. Nickelodeon was a channel with good shows regardless of what decade it was in. Speaking of Nickelodeon shows, I have to recall a story of what happened to me.
I enjoy finding lost media, so I was usually impressed with my findings. My friend back in Orlando helped me salvage most of what we got. The files we found were usually just recordings with higher quality, or something completely new. Most of what we found had the quality of a VHS tape.
You see, I had a knack for discovering things that nobody has ever seen before. It was pretty enjoyable for the both of us. However, one bit left us petrified more than proud. One day I received an email from my friend, saying that he found something. This is what the email said:
Hey buddy, you need to hear this. When I was rummaging around the internet, I found this link to some obscure website. This was the file that I got from it. Now listen. This is unlike anything we have ever gotten. Watch this at your own risk.
Attached to the email was a video file named "Nickmlaatr.mp4".
I didn't really get why he was so shaken up by this file, but it made me curious. Looking at the file name brought back memories to me. My Life as a Teenage Robot was one of my favorite Nick shows alongside Ren and Stimpy and Rocko's Modern Life. In fact, I might even call it my most favorite out of the bunch. My memories made me more curious for what the video had for me, so I clicked on the file. It began with a countdown from five seconds in a dark turquoise color. After the intro played, my nostalgia came in like a tsunami. All throughout the theme song, I sat there grinning like a dummy until the title screen came around.
The title card was pretty jarring. The background was of a dark, red color that took up most of the lower part of the screen, with black on the top. The music was this deep, ambient note that sounded like as if a higher being was watching me. The title read in black text, "Jenny gets Trashed". When all this came onscreen, I sure as hell wasn't smiling anymore. I knew something was up.
The episode started with Jenny sleeping on her bed as the light of the rising sun shone more and more on her. It stayed on this shot for a good eight seconds until a sudden alarm blared in the room and red lights flashed, waking Jenny up. "Right after a good night's sleep?" She asked. Jenny flew outside the window and just as I expected, there was trouble. There was a horde of Cluster droids threatening a group of people, about to exterminate them. As the usual action of the series began to unfold, I was yet again amused. It was fun seeing Jenny whoop all of the droids. When the horde was weakened, Jenny mashed them all in one ball and swatted them away, like what she did in the intro.
Then the bad stuff started happening.
Instead of landing on the ground or sent to the middle of nowhere, the ball of droids crashed into a building, exploding from the impact. The music abruptly stopped as the sound of rumbling debris kept going. It cut to Jenny as she stared in disbelief, her hands covering her mouth. After ten or twelve seconds, people started crowding up on her, rebelling. I couldn't make out what they were trying to say, but all I know is that they sounded harsher than what I expected. "Guys... stop! It was just an accident! It was just an accident!" Jenny said as she was surrounded, shortly crying and sobbing afterwards.
I noticed that the voice acting was a bit unnerving. Instead of the actors having fun with playing a scene from the script, it sounded a bit legit. It sounded as if the actors weren't acting anymore. It sounded as if they had just lost a loved one.
This went on for 16 seconds until the screen faded to black. White text saying "One Week Later" showed up on the screen, showing that a week had passed since the tragic accident. I paused it to think on what was happening.
I had no idea what I was watching. This seemed like a normal episode, but why did it get this dark after just one minute? The title, the accident, the voice acting, this seemed a bit too dark for this show. I was worried about how dark this episode was going to get after one chronological week.
I clicked play and the screen faded out into a shot of a junkyard. I noticed another thing that seemed uncanny. The art style seemed a bit more detailed than usual. The animators seemed to be putting all of their effort into this episode. It cut to a closeup of a scrap pile, which Jenny was laying on, blacked out. She looked dirty and was a bit damaged, like the rest of the garbage on the pile. She woke up after five seconds, groaning as she tried to regain consciousness. The animation looked a lot better as well. It seemed like this was made in flash or toonboom.
She tried to get out of the junkyard by using her rocket flight, but nothing happened. She then tried to access one of her weapons, but nothing happened as well. Her weapons and abilities were disabled. She then proceeded to wander the junkyard. The place was even bigger than most junkyards I've seen. It reminded me of the dead wasteland of Earth from Wall-e. Jenny looked around, trying to call for somebody. She at one point even said to herself that she was sorry about the accident that she had caused.
The time shifted to night, and Jenny was sobbing again. The garbage in the junkyard had a color scheme of light blue tainted in with their original colors for the moonlight. Jenny then proceeded into the darkest area of the junkyard. She stopped in her tracks when she looked at her surroundings. It cut to a closeup of a robot's dismantled face. I paused in terror at what I saw. Unlike the regular cartoony style of the robots in the show, this was different. The robot had holes where wires came out of and human-like eyes. The teeth looked crooked as well, not to mention it was missing some. The fact that the art style was more detailed made matters even worse. I clicked the play button again, and four more closeups of broken, mangled robot faces came onscreen, a deep, rumbling, ambient sound accompanying the visuals. It cut to a closeup of Jenny's eyes, her pupils shaking in fear. After 3 seconds, the ambient music stopped abruptly with a thud as Jenny ran out of the area, screaming. Again, the voice acting sounded legit, so it was more of an actual scream.
It faded into a view of the hill from earlier at night, the moon shining above it. On the bottom of the pile was a hole with a light inside it. I assumed Jenny built a home inside the scrap pile and sure enough, it cut to her sitting alone inside it with a lantern. The lantern's glass was broken from being thrown away and not being used. After ten seconds, Jenny lay down on the ground, and closed her eyes, crying and sobbing herself to sleep. Blue tears ran down her face as she cried. I felt really bad on the inside. If this episode ever aired, this would've been the saddest moment of the entire show. "I didn't mean to do it..." Jenny said as she cried. After fifteen minutes of her sobbing and finally getting some rest, the screen faded to black. The credits played. The green on the bottom of the background was replaced with dark red, and the blue on the top was black instead. The Jenny head outline now had a frown on it's face and the music was a sad, piano tune composed of high notes that had a reverb effect. It summarized the dark, depressing nature of the episode well.
Once the episode was over, I reflected. What was all that? The show wouldn't get this dark, wouldn't it? There was no possible way that Nickelodeon let someone finish this whole episode and not get fired once. I had several problems sleeping for three weeks because of it. This creeped me out not only for how dark the episode was, but for the mystery on the development. This couldn't be real. But it was. I didn't have most of the joyful feelings that I get from receiving lost media for a period of time. Every time I discovered a lost video, I panic internally. I fear what I could witness from viewing it. I don't know what could happen. Fortunately, my friend calmed me down after a week or so.
I still have the episode deep in my files somewhere. Locked somewhere in containment. Normally, I hear stuff about episodes like this being paranormal, like as if someone couldn't turn off their TV or whatever unbelievable baloney these people made up. However, I kept this episode deep in containment because it was real. I'm an eyewitness to Jenny gets Trashed. But one thing's for sure though. I'm not going back to look at what sick messed up stuff that was kept secret at Nickelodeon.