Reviews: Cartoon Network
What I think of CN's current state....
Now some people may expect me to say that this channel is crap and to never watch it. While some others expect me to say it was so much better before in the earlier days. Well, I'm here to say....that CN has improved. Especially compared to its pitiful state in 2009 and the abundance of CN Real cartoons. I can say that its starting to get back on its feet again. Obviously, this is due to the making of great cartoons (regardless of what I think of them) such as Gumball, Adventure Time, Regular Show, and Over the Garden Wall. Plus its currently an all cartoons channel like its supposed to be and I hope it stays that way. Plus, from what I heard, Johnny Test is cancelled which is good. Some other reasons why it is better in its current state is because they seem to be doing a better job compared to previous years when it comes to making watchers pleased and satisfied with their work. Possibly due to bringing back Toonami (I'm counting the entire channel) and Cartoon Planet (to watch old cartoons). But the thing is, with the internet, all of those things are kinda pointless since I can just watch them on the internet without any interruptions. I also think that they have stopped with the habit of axeing cartoons that don't deserve to be axed (I think). Though its not without its flaws, even though CN improved there is no forgetting the cartoons that they have axed. An example is probably Sym-Bionic Titan and Thunder Cats 2011. Both, in my opinion, great cartoons that didn't deserve the axe. Sadly the network didn't think that and axed the cartoons (Sym bionic Titan's real reason for being cancelled is because it didn't fit what the producers wanted it to be (*cough* Ben 10 *cough*)) and to add insult to injury, the rerun it on Toonami without any plans for reviving them since the creators left (Well, Gendy has...I don't know about the other one). They also still have this bad habit of giving too many timeslots for cartoons. Teen Titans GO! while funny, loses its luster after being shown like for the twentieth time during the day. Same thing with the Amazing World of Gumball, while other shows really need more screentime (*cough* Sonic Boom! *cough*). But overall, an improvement but still has flaws that bring it down for me. I would suggest just watching it on the internet unless you want to watch it RIGHT AWAY.
A Big Part of my Childhood
For as long as I can remember, I have been an avid viewer of Cartoon Network. I remember watching new episodes of Sheep in the Big City and The Powerpuff Girls on Friday nights, I remember Cartoon Cartoons, and I even remember Cartoon Network's Big Pick and the pilot episodes people voted for (besides Codename Kids Next Door). Anyway, I wasn't watching CN right when its Network Decay was at its peak, so I have no comment on that. But, I do have a commentary on this - Yes, Cartoon Network has some of my favorite shows, including Adventure Time, The Annoying Orange, and only a few anime on Adult Swim (Eureka Seven, Fullmetal Alchemist, Soul Eater, and One Piece - which is coming back to Toonami - come to mind). Sadly, CN doesn't air the cartoons of my childhood. Cow and Chicken? Sheep in the Big City? Whatever Happened to Robot Jones? Not on the CN anymore. The least they could do is re-air old episodes of those shows on Friday or Saturday nights for us nostalgia fans. Anyway, I'm going to go search Youtube for the Cartoon Network cartoons of the past while I think of people who are happy to join my Cartoon Network prayer circle. I heard that Party Wagon movie is interesting. Maybe it will start a Cartoon Network revival we can all get behind.
A Great Channel, Now Digging Its Own Grave
Cartoon Network hit the airwaves October 1st, 1992 by airing the Looney Tunes short Rhapsody Rabbit. It was the birth of an all-animation channel. It would change television history and change cartoons as we knew. Now, I was born September 1st of '94, nearly two years after the channel premiered. I would soon grow up on the channel when I hit around the age of 5 in '99. What I remember was what most called, "The Golden Age" of the channel. I would watch The Powerpuff Girls whenever it was on and was obsessed with it, collecting practically every single piece of its merchandise whenever I could. I watched other Cartoon Network originals like Dexters Laboratory, Johnny Bravo, Ed Edd N Eddy, Courage The Cowardly Dog , and many others like them. I even watched the occasional anime on Toonami like Dragonball Z and Sailor Moon, even though I barely remember any of it. Cartoon Network, I would consider, to be one of the best channels in the history of television. It brought cartoons into a new light and brought anime to US shores. With the help of Adult Swim and adult humor in its most popular cartoons, it showed that cartoons aren't just a child's medium. Despite this, most can agree that ever since its logo change to CN in 2004, Cartoon Network has been in a downward spiral. Even though they've pumped out decent original series like Fosters Home For Imaginary Friends, Ben 10, and arguably, Chowder, Flapjack, and the various Canadian cartoons they've imported, CN started to change. With the recent CNReal and airing of live action movies, many believe that the channel has taken a turn for the worse. I couldn't look at CN the same way again. I say this channel was at it's best in the late 90's to early 2000's with its original programming. Others say it was before with all the classic cartoons. Hopes have risen for the recent airing of classic Looney Tunes cartoons on the modern day Cartoon Network. For all of us longing for the past... it may be coming back.
What it is Now
When I was a kid, I watched Cartoon Network a lot. Now, I want my kids to enjoy it like I did. However, the era of when they were the best children's programming has come to a sort of end. They went through that CN Real phase (even though half of it wasn't real), which pretty much changed the network, and not for the better. It seems to be trying to be hip and new, but the way it does that is cringe worthy. Those bumps? Their usually not entertaining anymore. Most of them are either boring jokes or something that is repeated too often. They have a movie night on the weekends, but the movies themselves are often bad (Aside from Ice Age) and are repeatedly shown across the week even though the kids watching have seen it a dozen times. Don't even get me started on their "original" movies, which consist of awful Tom and Jerry movies that aren't as funny the original series. Oh, and the movie has bumps and bits when the commercial starts, but its just two offscreen guys making 'funny' questions. However, some of their new shows may save them...
A Twenty Year-Long Rollercoaster Ride
It has been twenty years, and this once-glorious channel has had many ups and downs. The first up was obviously during the early years, where many great shows first appeared. Dexter's Lab, Courage The Cowardly Dog, and Ed, Edd, 'n Eddy were three such shows I enjoyed as a kid, and I still remember fondly. Toonami was another feature that I liked, and I'm glad it's been revived under [adult swim]. Of course this is Cartoon Network we're talking about, and we can't forget the lowest point of the channel: CN Real. One could probably make dozens of essays on how horrible an idea that was, but I'll just say that if it weren't for The Mooninites, the infamous Boston Bomb Scare wouldn't have occured and we wouldn't have had to suffer through those horribly atrocious shows. We all know them, and we all hate them, so, for the sake of not reliving the pain, I won't mention them on this Review. Cartoon Network has yet to fully recover from that fiasco, but, given shows like Adventure Time and Regular Show, they're at least showing some effort in trying to recapture their former glory. And seeing them actually show some of their supposedly-forgotten shows like Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends today definitely shows that they still remember the classics. I actually grew up watching the shows Cartoon Network had to offer, and, while I look upon its past fondly and still like the channel and some of its shows, I don't think it'll go back to the glory days it once had. If they somehow make it through another twenty years, then I hope they don't make any more mistakes like they did about five years ago, and that they truly get back to their roots soon.