All of us had a snug bond with Cartoon Network, Disney Kids, Toon Disney, Disney XD, Pogo and other animation channels. As kids born during late 90’s, we had a vast variety of cartoon shows to watch during our free time or all day. We had many animated friends namely Scooby Doo, Johnny the Bravo, Dexter, Flintstones, Powerpuff Girls, Phineas and Ferb, Kids next door, Tarzan, Popeye the sailor man, Power rangers and many more. We all used to be a gang according to a particular cartoon show.
Bags, pencils and other stationary items bearing our favorite animated characters were gifted on our birthdays. Sometimes, we used to headstrong in order to get a Pokemon card. Girls compared themselves to Blossom, Bubbles or Buttercup based on their character along with Disney princesses. We all liked Shaggy and Scooby Doo for their lankiness. We used to argue on which Power Ranger and Pokemon had strong powers. Of course, flight used by Noddy, Bob the Builder, Thomas, Miffy and friends, pleasant Oswald, Looney toones, Pingu, funny Mr.Bean-animated series were everyone’s fav. Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Goofy and many other characters improved our humdrum mood in Disney channel.
We would exchange anything but our TV remote during our show. There used to be fight manias with our siblings or parents as part of our daily routine. In case we had the boon to watch alone, switching between two to three shows amidst commercial breaks was an easy exercise for us. Watching them for god-knows-how-many-times made the dialogues and BGM to be etched in our hearts. Still, we watched again. How can we forget the evergreen Tom and Jerry? We had two Toms based on animation quality and we would never budge until a Fred Quimby directed episode comes.
In late 2000’s, Ben 10 became a craze and soon there was a grown up version of Ben. Chotta Bheem became a hit as we were moving from English towards our regional language channels. Doremon seems like the new craze now!
Though cartoons were a major distraction to most of us, it instilled a small moral along with fun. Most of the shows taught us to help each other, fight against the bad ones. Scooby Doo, Dexter, Powerpuff girls and others together had a funny competition in the shows and it silently voiced about unity. Though it sometimes made us forget our work, it didn’t ruin our innocence like smartphones.
Now-a-days, most cartoon shows with outstanding VFX effects fully focus on entertainment rather than moral values. Smartphones have also considerably reduced the cartoon show craze amongst children today. They prefer violence-stimulating video game to happy-going Oswald and Tom and Jerry. I agree that we had those during our time too. But there was a balance between video games and television which is absent today.
Our cartoons hit us with a wave of nostalgia and today’s cartoons make us worry about our next generation kids!