"There's something that's called 'adult animation' and it usually means it appeals to adolescent, teenage boys and that's not really adult in my view."Good news! The mainstream Western audience finally accepts that animation can also be for adults! Bad news! The mainstream Western audience thinks that all adult animation is full of graphic violence, sex jokes, swearing, and, to a lesser extent, Toilet Humor! In The Dark Age of Animation, when the Animation Age Ghetto was the norm, people like Ralph Bakshi made vulgar cartoons out of a desire to make animation that wasn't "just for kids" by making something that couldn't possibly be shown to kids. They thus avoided the annoying statement "It can be enjoyed by the whole family" (with the implication that it's meant for children) and a Cult Classic or two emerged from the era. During The Renaissance Age of Animation, thanks to the popularity of Beavis And Butthead, The Ren & Stimpy Show, and (to a milder degree) The Simpsons, the idea that animation could be expanded beyond the family market began to take off again. With the establishment of the TV ratings system, it also became easier to make it clear to audiences that a show wasn't for children. As the Renaissance Age began to shade into The Millennium Age of Animation, King of the Hill became a quiet success for FOX, and Cartoon Network — starting with the success of the spoof Space Ghost Coast to Coast — began to create its own adult-oriented shows, eventually launching the [adult swim] lineup. But the biggest shake-up to the ghetto came in 1997 when Comedy Central debuted the MA-rated South Park, a vulgar but often uproarious comedy that immediately became a smash hit. Unfortunately, due to Follow the Leader, most of the adult-oriented shows that followed in South Park's wake were similarly vulgar, envelope-pushing fare — most successfully FOX's Family Guy. Thanks to creators following the example of that, people now believe that any western animation that isn't just kids' shows are sitcoms and/or Vulgar Humor, which is far from the truth. So anyone wanting to create serious, intelligent animated fare for adults will find it very hard to convince its potential audience that it isn't all Toilet Humor and Comedic Sociopathy. This thinking has similar effects to the Animation Age Ghetto. Animation may not be seen as exclusively for kids anymore, but it is seen as exclusively childish. Compare with All Anime Is Naughty Tentacles. Animation is not the only thing that suffered from this trend though. Point & click adventures suffer from this trope as well, to the point where certain point & click adventure fans won't buy point & click adventures because they don't have funny characters.
— George Griffin, independent animator