I feel it is once again important to speak my mind, this time regarding something both near to my heart and of increasing significance in modern society: cartoons.
more specifically, they suck. now, I wrote an entire blog post this morning, very neatly explaining my position, but after re-reading it even I was amazed at its high level of old-manedness. flibberty-floo, I say! but since this got pretty boring pretty quickly, I re-wrote the post to include a counterpoint from lisa. disclaimer: I’m writing lisa’s part. she has no idea she’s a player in today’s blog post. but I believe this is a fair representation of what she would say if we had this conversation.
garvey: don’t get me wrong, there have always been sucky cartoons, but this post follows from a conversation I had last night with a very intelligent and not at all drunk lawyer about the state of cartoons that are being slapped together and thrown on television today. I have yet to see it, but council tells me that the old claymation rudolph was on tv the other day but now ends with a rendition of the classic song by destiny’s child, not burl ives. how sick is this? again, I haven’t seen it yet, but since it would inevitably cause me to crack my tv screen, I think we’re all glad I’m still in the dark.
lisa: jane you ignorant slut. if you’re going to drag my personality into this, at least take the time to see the cartoon you’re bitching about. my God, you whine like a little girl.
garvey: listen, I’m not even talking to you because you hid the rest of the white trash from me. and besides, I’m not just talking about this cartoon. I’m talking about every weak cartoon that’s on every channel these days. who was the marketing genius who stood up trembling in front of the other corporate suits and made the suggestion to axe burl ives in favor of destiny’s child? was it the same guy who decided to bring back transformers, but this time as a pokemon rip-off? was it the same guy who decided animaniacs and pinky and the brain weren’t selling enough plastic crap, so they replaced them with digimon and ed edd and eddie?
lisa: I made enough white trash to feed an army, and you were stealing handfuls like it was your job. and you only eat the m&ms, leaving an overabundance of pretzels. okay, I’ll give you the fact that animaniacs was a hundred times better than anything that’s on tv right now, but you can’t tell me that the bigwigs at the WB network were only thinking of ART when they played it. they made a lot of money selling pinky and the brain bobble heads, and don’t even get me started on those half hour commercials for action figures called the transformers. more than meets the eye, indeed.
garvey: touché, she-devil. admittedly, there’s a trade off between art and business and it’s a relationship that’s been around ever since the first cave-drawer and the first marketing lackey discovered that they could reach a larger and more profitable audience together than they could apart. artist: give up 100% creative control and give the masses what they want. marketer: accept that it isn’t your name in lights, and leave the aesthetics to the artist. both of you manage to balance these tasks, and you’ll get the fame and fortune you so richly deserve, and the audience will get their bugs bunny, their sport goofy, their homer simpson. my point is that the teeter-totter that is this relationship has favored the board room over the easel more and more lately.
lisa: wait, are you saying these guys are trying to (gasp!) make money?!? someone call the papers! rally the troops! puh-leeez. I’m so sorry they took away your precious burl ives, but what do you expect? want to make a cartoon? get some money. know how to make money? attract an audience. want to make a lot of money? attract an audience willing to spend more money than your cheap a—
garvey: whoa there, sparky, this is a family site. and you know I’m right – you can make money with a good cartoon. by your logic, we should re-release the mona lisa with j-lo’s tush and a trucker’s cap just to increase foot traffic at the louvre. and I downright expect sh*tty toons from fox and the WB, but where does cartoon network get off showing 30 hours a day of totally spies, billy and mandy, and (shudder) yu-gi-oh? if it weren’t for adult swim and genndy tartakovsky, even this bastion of decent cartoons would make me sick.
lisa: get a life, methuselah.
garvey: you’re such a girl. you’ll never understand.
lisa: I understand you’re a big dork.
garvey: you knew that coming into this, baby. now pass the white trash.
1 year ago