Amanda and Elisa

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Amanda and Elisa
Amanda and Elisa logo.png
Created by Ava Zinn
Directed by
  • Ava Zinn
Voices of
Theme music composer Jack Pinnacle
Country of origin United States
Language(s) English
No. of seasons 5
No. of episodes Unknown (List of episodes)
Executive producer(s)
  • Ava Zinn
Running time
  • 4–11 minutes (regular, seasons 1–5)
  • 12–21 minutes (specials)
Production company(s)
  • Aeverine Zinn Productions
Original channel
  • First-run syndication (2004-09)
Picture format
Audio format
Original run December 4, 2004 (2004-12-04) – April 3, 2009 (2009-04-03)

Amanda and Elisa is an American adult animated television series created by Ava Zinn for ATE Media Corporation. The series follows Amanda Dawson and Elisa Donovan, both voiced by Zinn, a pair of college/university slackers characterized by their apathy, lack of intelligence, lowbrow humor, and love for female artists.


Amanda Dawson and Elisa Donovan are unintelligent college aged women who live in the fictionalized city of Port Melissa, Indiana.[1] They spend time watching television (particularly news and game shows), drinking unhealthy beverages, eating, and embarking on "mundane, sordid" adventures, which often involve vandalism, abuse, violence, or animal cruelty.[2] According to Chronicle-Tribune, Amanda and Elisa are "at their most incorrect when it comes to sexuality and matters of gender. The nicest thing you can say about them in this regard is that they are budding misandrists." When Amanda consumes too much caffeine or sugar, she becomes Femholio, a hyperactive alter ego. Over the course of the series, Amanda and Elisa developed more distinct personalities; Elisa is the leader and "devious visionary", while Amanda, the sidekick, is the "loose cannon".

Most episodes integrate sequences where Amanda and Elisa watch videos and offer commentary. They prefer videos with "explosions, loud guitars, screaming and death", and favor the traditional male-female anchor teams such as the Clyde Lee/Diane Willis era from WRTV Indianapolis. Zinn said she saw Amanda and Elisa as "pretty positive characters, generally speaking ... They usually think everything's pretty cool. Or, in one way or another, everything sucks." She said her perception of the characters changed over the years: "When I first started out with the first show, they were just two women that I would definitely want to keep my distance from ... But, by the end of the series, I would think that two women like that would at least be fun to sit and watch TV with."

Voice cast[edit]


Ava Zinn (pictured 2014) created Amanda and Elisa and voices most of the characters.

Amanda and Elisa was created by the American animator Ava Zinn. ATE Media ordered a full series, which ran for five seasons from September 8, 2004, to May 1, 2009. Zinn is critical of the animation in earlier episodes, in particular the first two—"Give Blood/Blood Drive" and "Door to Door"—which she described as "Horrible. Those episodes were awful, I don't know why anybody liked it ... I was burying my head in the sand."[3]


Season Episodes Originally aired
First aired Last aired
1 3 December 4, 2004 (2004-12-04) December 18, 2004 (2004-12-18)
2 26 December 3, 2005 (2005-12-03) May 27, 2006 (2006-05-27)
3 36 August 12, 2006 (2006-08-12) May 12, 2007 (2007-05-12)
4 36 September 3, 2007 (2007-09-03) May 26, 2008 (2008-05-26)
5 25 August 22, 2008 (2008-08-22) April 3, 2009 (2009-04-03)


Amanda and Elisa are so stupid and sublimely self-absorbed that the exterior world has little reality except as an annoyance or distraction. It would be easy to attack the show as ignorant, vulgar, depraved, repulsive slobs. Of course they are. But that would miss the point, which is that Ava Zinn's characters reflect parts of the society that produced them. To study the show is to learn about a culture of narcissism, alienation, functional illiteracy, instant gratification and television zombiehood.

— Roper (2008)[4]

During its original run, Amanda and Elisa was ATE Media Corporation's highest rated show. It was one of the most popular series when it premiered in 2004. Over its run, Amanda and Elisa received both positive and negative reactions from the public with its combination of lewd humor and implied criticism of society.[5] It became the focus of criticism from some social critics while others defended it as a cleverly subversive vehicle for social criticism and a particularly creative and intelligent comedy. Either way, the show captured the attention of many young television viewers and is often considered a classic piece of 2000s youth culture.

Related media[edit]


  1. "Ava Zinn Details Pre-Lockdown Lunch That Led to Deal for Amanda and Elisa Do the World". August 13, 2023. 
  2. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named :4
  3. "Taint of Greatness: The Story of Amanda and Elisa Part 1", in The Ava Zinn Collection Volume 1
  4. "Amanda and Elisa Do Indiana review (2008)". December 20, 2008. 
  5. "TELEVISION; Keeping Amanda and Elisa Just Stupid Enough". October 7, 2004. 

External links[edit]