I've been watching some old cartoons on DVD and some clips on YouTube and I really, really miss the edginess that those cartoons had.
Looking through I watched Animaniacs, Tiny Toons, Batman Beyond (ended in 2001), Freakazoid , the original Batman: Animated Series, Beast Wars, Rugrats, Doug, Ah! Real Monsters, and multiple others...
It seems to me there was a shift in cartoons around the early 2000s and shows like Invader Zim, Batman Beyond, were canned due to the darkness of the show (I have an article from a newspaper shortly before Batman Beyond was canceled lamenting the fact that cartoons were getting to violent and dark).
I do think there has been some good shows but overall I really think the quality, the creativity of the shows were much, much stronger in shows that were produced in the 1990s.
Animaniacs was one of my favorite shows and I love the songs they had in there. Catchy as well but extremely educational as well. As well some of the episodes were great because they reflect the old Hollywood movies or had a lot of innuendos.
I don't know. I know that Avatar was one of the best cartoons to come out in the later 2000s but to me, Avatar wouldn't have been a big rarity back in the early 2000s, late 90s where there were a lot of original shows, a lot of edgier and more substance cartoons.
TMNT/Transformers/GI Joe/Thundercats/maybe He-Man basically let the 80s trump anything made since. And that's not including a bunch of other smaller series that were popular. Granted I wish that those series would've had the eye for continuity, polish, and storytelling that some of the more modern things have, but still...
And there has been some good 2000s stuff, though early in the 00s. Justice League was pretty good. Though it was pretty much born out of the same group of DC Comics adapters that gave us Batman, Superman, and Batman Beyond.
part of the problem in the 2000s was when studios realized it was cheaper to just grab whatever anime series was popular in Japan 3-5 years prior and dub that instead of green-lighting originally produced series (and this is not an indictment of anime. There are series that the west should absolutely be exposed to. It's just that perhaps that came at the cost of fresh productions on this side of the Pacific)
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Rugrats and Doug still the greatest 1-2 cartoon punch.
I have watched a couple Rugrats episodes via the Netflix, and there is so much awesomeness that just went undetected 15 years ago. Little obscure stuff like Angelica doing the "Warriors...Come out to playy-yay." (minus saying warriors but she says play perfectly). They even have a Grey Gardens episode. Hell, in Doug they audition for a movie named Waffle Stomper.
I always thought Batman Beyond was crap. Never been a fan of the youthifieing something to make it 'cool' or some such nonsense, even when I was that age.
Of all the cartoons I watched , even the crappier Nicktoons were better than everything else with 2-3 exceptions.
I always feel it is unfair though to bash today's cartoons as an adult. I will say the network that has had the biggest drop is Cartoon Network. I thought their original "Cartoon Cartoons" were great like Dexters Lab(pre voice actor change anyway), Johnny Bravo, Cow and Chicken; and even some of the second generation ones like Courage; but the ones toward the end of my watching I just didn't like.
Gimme the 90s. Taking out the shows that had similar length runs in both decades, IMO Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain, and Batman: TAS are better than anything the 2000s gave us. My top 3 from the 2000s are probably Spongebob, Fairly Oddparents, and Invader Zim.
And I left out counting Adult Swim because this sounded like primarily a childrens cartoon comparison.
I loved the 80s cartoons and then even the 90s there were really good cartoons. Then the 2000's have been terrible. Maybe because i'm getting older, maybe because of the nostalgia degree, but I just don't watch any of the new cartoons.
My favorite from the 90s were Rocko's modern life and Doug. Actually all of those early 90s nicktoons were really good.
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"I want revenge on Rachel Ray and the Food Network! Can't you make her eyes fall out or something? **** fall off...?"
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The episodes with Ralph Bighead were my favourite.
It's a pity it's only on at like 4am now.
Also this video has one of the best comments ever
I feel like Wacky Delly tried to change styles too much. From their pilot, which was very surrealist, creative work, to this episode, which was clearly done in a sort of pop art style. Then the "overexposed" episode, a sort of minimalist masterpiece, and finally that high animation episode, which was just foolish.
I feel like Bighead was very scatterbrained on where he wanted to go with Wacky Delly, which is why it eventually failed.
Rocko was the best show hands down. I'm pretty sure Stephen Hillenburg is just a total pothead that writes cartoons. Rocko and Spongebob were funny when I was younger, but now I'll watch them sometimes when I'm stoned (or even when I'm not), and God damn it's so much funnier.