I was reminiscing over cartoons I used to watch as a child and grew up with (still do watch them when I get a chance) and I don’t know what’s happened to the industry but they definitely don’t make cartoons like they used to in the 90’s. The 90’s was a fantastic decade of childhood shows. Two that really stand out for me is “Cow and Chicken,” a surreal cartoon about odd siblings and “Ren and Stimpy,” another surreal and slightly twisted cartoon about a cat and dog.
What I loved about “Cow and Chicken” is the pure humour that came with it. I mean the siblings that are farm animals had human parents that only had legs. Plus they had a boneless chicken cousin and an uncle who was a slug married to a human with a child together! And who could forget the red devil guy that had an exposed rear-end for everyone to see. Now that would confuse any small child, but my curiosity towards the cartoon is what made it hilariously addictive. This cartoon was mad and quirky, the way David Feiss (creator) came up with ideas was amusing such as naming Cow’s cuddly toys ‘Crabs’ the warthog dog and ‘Manure’ the bear. Even adults could get into the cartoon as there were many adult jokes. Even as a young adult now, I still enjoy watching “Cow and Chicken” and understand the subliminal adult jokes I wouldn’t have understood as a child. This cartoon will never get old!
I remember John Kricfalusi’s (creator) use of sarcasm and animation with too much detail of expressive emotional features and disgusting close ups in “Ren and Stimpy”. This cartoon was insane and sinister with the dialogue, music and animation combined, it was powerful. In the episode “Space Madness” the way Kricfalusi portrays Ren’s progressing insanity was an eye-opener with Ren eating a bar of soap and referring to it as an ‘ice-cream bar.’ This was comical as well as bizarre which was the style the cartoon was well acknowledged for.
I guess the industry has stopped making cartoons like these because they are afraid of complaints due to the content. There’s the whole issue of nitpickers protesting the suitability of cartoons for children etc therefore cartoons nowadays are lacking that comical value with crap happy storylines that are ineffective.