Basic Mortality is a pre-war series. The cover for the season 1 DVD features a man and a woman in suits. Judging from the content, the series is most likely a criminalistic series, with the characters shown in the cover being policemen or another type of law enforcers. Ice King thinks the show is "a touch too dark."
In "Another Five More Short Graybles," Ice King tells the penguins to pick a movie out of the nominated ones (which, other than Basic Mortality, include Airplanes Taking Off, Blimby's "WHO GOTS DA ABC'S", and Baby Ballet). The penguins pick Baby Ballet. However, since Ice King wants to watch Basic Mortality, they bargain so that Ice King can watch Basic Mortality as long as he does ballet for the penguins dressed as a baby.