Friday, August 29, 2008

What do you want to do tonight, Brain?

What better way to celebrate post #50 than by reminiscing about those old cartoons we all used to watch?

Come on, you remember those. The oldies your parents used to watch, the cartoons from the '80s... maybe even some modern day cartoons that you schedule into your week even to this day. Point is, you've watched a cartoon at some point in your life (or I assume you have, since you obviously have internet access and most people who browse the intarwebz own a TV or did at one point in their life... and if you say you've never watched a cartoon, ever, I'm going to assume you're lying. Or you're a serial killer. Either way, you're weird.)

Now, for the sake of this post, I'm going to include kid/tween/teen oriented anime within the "cartoon" category. It's easier for me if I don't have to separate them. Adult anime has it's place, too, and maybe I'll do a post on that sometime, but for now we're talking about shows aimed at non adults.

First up...

Who doesn't remember this cartoon? This is the only cartoon I can ever remember where no one cared that animated characters ran around with guns and sharp pointy things and tried to kill each other on a regular basis. Especially in such an innocently fun fashion. It was all in good fun... no one worried that the kids watching this cartoon might someday grow up to be mentally unstable from being exposed to such "violence." There were all kinds of maliciously fun characters! Yosemite Sam, Wile E. Coyote, Marvin the Martian, Elmer Fudd ("kill the wabbit! kill the waaaabbit!"). It was ossim.

To be fair, though, I think the cartoon was originally made for adults. Which actually makes it better, because both adults and kids are entertained by it. I think I really liked Looney Toons simply because it wasn't childish. It didn't dumb itself down for the kids.

Another intelligent show was Animaniacs. We own the DVD of the first season, and even to this day it's still a riot. Soooooo many inuendos and things that were funny back in the day but especially grin-worthy as an adult. I mean, there were college kids who watched that show. It was that good.

And of course, who doesn't remember "Hellooooooo, Nurse!"? Or "Good Idea, Bad Idea"? Hell even the Wheel of Morality was good for a snort of laughter every now and then. God I miss that show. Now I'm gonna have to watch it when I get home.

More old school than Animaniacs were my days spent watching cartoons that were great back in the day, but I'm not so sure I'd like them now. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (the OLD cartoon, not that new crap), Darkwing Duck, The Tick (okay, that one is still good), TailSpin, Chip n' Dale's Rescue Rangers, Gummy Bears (frak, I have that song stuck in my head now... "Gummy beaaaarrrs, bouncing here and there and everywhere"....). Yeah, the list goes on and on. And on.

Now, that's not to say I didn't escape the mindless drivel of some old school cartoons. Most notibly were things like My Little Ponies (shut it) and Rocky and Bullwinkle. What? Why diss the squirrel and moose?

Okay, expirament time. Go out and rent the Rocky and Bullwinkle DVD from the video store (if it isn't available there you could probably get it for like $5-10 somewhere else). Push the play button and set the timer for one hour. I bet you money you couldn't sit through an entire hour of it without feeling like you've lost half your brain cells (I'd actually wager you couldn't sit through an hour, period). We put the DVD on in the background for game night one night, and after three hours all of us were ready to shoot the TV and put the DVD in the microwave, and we weren't even watching it. It was just on as background noise.

I mean, as a kid I didn't care either way about Rocky and Bullwinkle. I'd watch it if it was on (and I still think Boris and what's her name are kind of funny). But God... I mean, there's a reason why I stated that some of the above cartoons might not be entertaining to me anymore. It is specifically because of the events of that game night that I vowed never to watch old school cartoons. I wanted to preserve the memories.

Moving right along then...

There was a magical time in my tweens when we got cable. I was exposed to a much broader range of cartoons. Ren and Stimpy, Rocco's Modern Life, Scooby Doo (no, I had not seen this show prior to cable. It wasn't run on our local channels).

The best of those beloved new cable channels? Cartoon Network. Oh yes. We had...

...Dexter's Laboratory

"Dee Deeeee!"

...Johnny Bravo

"Whoa, Momma!"

... The Powerpuff Girls

... And of course, anime.

I was a sucker for anime. I loved the animation style, I couldn't get enough of it. I'm intensely guilty of watching things like Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, Digimon, Pokemon (admittedly I was more into the game than the show), Tenchi Muyo, etc. I may have even owned some of the tapes. Yes, video tapes. Shush.

There is one I didn't get into until after it was cancelled. The picture should say it all.

Invader Zim is possibly the best cartoon Nickelodeon ever ran, even if it was only for three seasons. (Ren and Stimpy was good, but I like Zim better.) Everyone is so sarcastic and oblivious. Zim's self-absorbed, spastic self is hilarious, and GIR is possibly the best secondary character I've ever come across. Not to mention all the quippy dialogue, such as this little gem...

Tallest: Weren't you banished to Foodcourtia? Shouldn't you be... frying something?
Zim: Oh, I quit when I found out about this.
Tallest: You quit being banished?

Yes. I lurves me some Zim.

And, last but not least, America's favorite animated family:


I don't even think I need to say anything about the Simpsons, other than it's creator also made Futurama (another priceless animated series... srsly, if you haven't seen it, you should).

Anyway, I've rambled on and thrown enough pictures at you for one day. But I want to know... what were your favorite cartoons while growing up? Are there any you still watch?

Quote of the day:

(Dexter's Laboratory)
Dee Dee: Oooh! What does THAT button do?


1 comment:

Mary B said...

The best part of having kids is an excuse to watch cartoons (not that I really need one).

I luuuuuuuuuuurve me some Animaniacs. It's still the ringtone on my cell. What do I want to do tonight? The same thing we do everynight, Pinky. Try to take over the world!!