Why does [adult swim] insist on pushing crappy flash-animated shows and *gulp* live-action comedies at the expense of Anime or their more popular shows ported from Fox? And why is there any censorship at all if it's an "adult" network?
It's "cheaper" to licence shows made in the U.S. and in-house because... big reveal here... it's actually much cheaper. There's no great conspiracy against anime in the adult swim offices, anime is from Japan, and costs assloads to import and air in other countries. Bandai, for example, is having a hell of a time trying to license its' shows to other countries, because it essentially shot itself in the foot; it's prices these days are particularly exorbitant.
Because it's apparently "cheaper" to produce flash-animated shows and live-action comedies than to gain licenses to show Anime and Fox animated imports (BTW, expect The Cleveland Show to premiere by Fall 2011 at the latest). It doesn't help that the powers-that-be has it in for Anime (They even post a disclaimer before the Saturday Anime block that rates it "M" for Mediocre, never mind that the majority of the shows are better than drivel like Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!). As for censorship, while it is an "Adult" network, they still have to abide by the FCC guidelines apparently. But at least compared to the censorship at Fox, Adult Swim is more lenient.
The "M" for Mediocre bump also aired in front of Family Guy at least once, so I doubt it's just aimed at anime but the block in general.
Last time I checked the FCC doesn't regulate the content shown on cable networks so that's not the issue. Also I think their problem with anime might have to do with the the fact that while some of them are hugely popular, they don't bring in huge ratings compared to some of the other stuff they show that and the anime market has been in rough shape in America for awhile now.
They have to abide by what their advertisers will put up with, same as any cable- or satellite-only network. The FCC is completely irrelevant here.
Judging by Comedy Central's uncensored late-night (or very early morning, whatever you wanna call it) broadcasts, it's safe to assume that it would be just fine to keep the later [adult swim] shows uncensored, but they deliberately choose to censor. The best reason I can think of is because it's a children's channel earlier in the day, so having all this uncensored swearing and nudity would incite complaints from parents.
It is probably censored on the orders of Turner Broadcasting. While it has a degree of autonomy, it is still one province in a great media empire.
Part of Adult Swim's reluctance to play anime probably has to do, in part, with the way anime is formatted. American networks prefer to have TV shows formatted in such a way that anyone can tune in and enjoy the show without having to watch previous episodes to know what's going on. Many anime shows tend to have much longer story arcs and tend to move a bit slower. I once tried watching an episode of Bleach and the entire episode was just a fight scene. Maybe it really is a good show, but without any previous context I had no idea what was going on so I didn't really care about the outcome of the battle. Even American shows that have ongoing story arcs will usually still have a new plot in each episode that got solved by the end of the episode. Hence, a new viewer still has something they can get invested in.
Why did they cut the end theme from Cowboy Bebop? (besides more commercial time of course) Plus, they never show the opening theme to Inuyasha, besides that single episode from the Band of Seven Arc. Also, on Saturday, they cut out several bumps entirely, making it difficult to time dvr & DVD/R recording. Plus those horrid old people bumps. The text ones are far more entertaining! Then they don't show encores in the same order anymore. Then they let the rights to The Big O season one expire. I'm tired of watching the last 13 episodes! Plus they stopped showing Bleach reruns (Episodes 1-63 were the best since the censorship started during The Bount Arc from hell) And how did Childrens Hospital reruns get so many views?!
It's not so hard to figure out why the Childrens Hospital get so many reruns given that they promote the hell out of it (Which is more than I can say for Anime shows, which are only promoted on Saturdays).
As for editing or deleting anime opening and closing themes: You answered your own question. Anime series are one or two minutes longer than American series. They cut the anime themes (and, usually, the Next Episode Previews) to make time for more ads. Nobody's happy about it, but at least [adult swim] doesn't insert extra commercial breaks during the episodes the way Sci Fi Channel did during Animondays.
CN has been doing this with a handful of the (un-adult swim related shows) with no reason being given.
Why did Adult Swim have to take over Friday Nights? I mean, I like a few of their shows but I would like to be able to watch Cartoon Network shows all night occasionally.
They were probably getting better ratings. The Cartoon Network shows that air during the day are aimed at kids and most probably don't have a large enough Periphery Demographic to justify airing it in a timeslot when mostly older people will be awake. Even if it's not a school night, a lot of kids won't be allowed (or won't even be able to) stay up watching cartoons until three in the morning. An older person can generally do that.
What is it with [adult swim]'s grudge against anime? Not to be a conspiracy theorist, but they use to have a healthy balance between Anime and their Comedies. I understand licensing anime can be expensive, but they play Family Guy, American Dad!, and King of the Hill back to back 4 days out of the week. Why is it that they can only find time for anime way back at 12AM on Saturdays?
Because even the most popular anime series don't get the ratings that the three shows you named have. At its best, Bleach draws about half the viewers of Family Guy. I don't think AS really has a grudge against anime—they've continued showing it and acquiring new series all these years—but I'll bet if one of their anime series got Family Guy-level ratings, they'd treat the shows with a little more respect.
They don't get very strong ratings for two reasons: Anime doesn't get as much marketing as the Adult Swim Comedy shows, and the anime boat has largely passed, becoming a niche thing again. On the other hand, comedic western animation has been getting bigger and bigger for the past 20 years and has become mainstream. Except for Code Geass and the series finale of Death Note, all of Adult Swim Action's top-rated shows—Anime/InuYasha, Bleach, Fullmetal Alchemist (the original one), Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo, The Big O, FLCL, and YuYu Hakusho—were aired or began airing during the peak of anime popularity. However, the guy who dislikes anime has always disliked it; I strongly believe ratings have nothing to do with it—it's that he's into that silly, non-sequitur humor Williams Street Productions produces, and anime is practically its polar opposite in animation. Whatever you like watching best, you'd probably dislike something that it has nothing in common with too.
Ratings also has nothing to do with the fact that they seemed to have stopped making bumpers for their anime. That shows how little they actually care about it when they don't do anything after buying the airing rights.
Part of the reason that American shows like Family Guy get more love than anime is probably due to the way anime shows are formatted. Most anime shows (the action and drama ones, in particular) tend to have much longer story arcs. King of the Hill and the Seth MacFarlane shows have never had plots that lasted more than two episodes. American networks, including Adult Swim, want to have shows that can be watched and enjoyed by anyone, even if it's 50 episodes in and the viewer has never seen the show. Even American shows that do have ongoing story arcs will often have individual plots in each episode that get resolved by the end of said episode. So there's still something for the new viewer to enjoy. The people running American networks often see anime as a bad investment because of this.
There is also the fact that there are some people, like myself, that do not enjoy most anime that airs on the network. The only shows I enjoy are Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo, The Big O, and FLCL otherwise, I mostly skip adult swim on saturday nights because most anime I see on there I do not enjoy. If Adult Swim aired anime nonstop, I can guarentee that their viewerbase would drop.
I wonder what the students at the University of California, Irvine think of China IL (there's no entry for that here and no mention on the Adult Swim entry). The show seems to like its acronym of "UCI." (That being said, shouldn't it be UIC, or The University of Illinois, China?)
UIC might result in confusion with the actual UIC (University of Illinois, Chicago)
What's with all the hiphop/rap references in their shows. This is much more prominant in "Aqua Teen Hunger Force" since Meatwad is a fan of rap music and MC Chris is a rapper and he makes guest appearances on this show and "Sealab 2021". Then there's "Dat Crooked Sipp" which is full of "Crunk" music refernces and it's follow up "Freaknik the Musical". Also Williams Street teamed up with a Hip Hop Label Definitive Jux to make Williams Street Records. Plus the show "Loiter Squad" stars a Hip Hop group. Of course this question is coming from a troper who doesn't like Hip Hop nor understand Hip Hop.
Adult Swim's headquarters is located in Atlanta, GA and many of its shows are produced there. Atlanta is considered one of the birthplaces of rap and hip hop and is well known for its independent music scene.