Huffpost UK Comedy uk
The Blog

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Rob Shaw Headshot

Taking a Deeper Look at Cartoon Characters of the 90s

Posted: Updated:

I decided to take a look at cartoons of the 90s. I know, this has probably been done to death, but I am going to put a slight slant on the idea. I am going to look at what these cartoons really meant

So I'm going to jump straight in to it.

POKEMON

I really got in to Pokemon, it was great. But, like many of these cartoons, until you step back at a later age and think about what it really was, you won't realise it's a bit wrong. Here is a summary of what I see now when I think of Pokemon

"It's about a world in which people capture animals and make them fight other animals for badges."

Which, if I'm not mistaken, with or without the badge reward system, is illegal. If I wandered around my local park with a chimp under my arm that was armed with a knife, and offered to battle it against some random bloke walking his pit bull, I would be arrested. Cock fighting is illegal as well as many other types animal fighting, so why is Pokemon alright? They never go in to the darker side of the Pokemon world where medicine is being tested on them and different shades of eye shadow "Oh look! the shampoo has gone into Pikachu's eyes, he doesn't seem to like it. NEXT BOTTLE!"

JOHNNY BRAVO

Now, it doesn't take a lot of effort to realise why this was a bit dodgy, but I will sum it up anyway.

"It's about a sex addict, that sounded like Elvis, best friend was a little girl and spends every day hassling and perving on women."

When you are 11 years old, you don't think about why this concept is definitely too mature for us. You just think "I'm a bit bored of him failing to chat up women and dedicating the gym to only the upper half of his body". And what was the deal with his relationship with that little girl? She was always around! But to be fair, he did seem to not like that girl when she was around. An aspect that was carefully looked at by the writers when considering a relationship between a pervert and a little girl.

SCOOBY-DOO

Apart from the obvious drug references I wanted to point out something else. They made this cartoon so Scooby-doo could talk... sort of. You just take it for granted that "because he's a dog, that's the best he is going to be able to talk". Until they introduced 'Scrappy-doo' who could talk with PERFECT DICTION!

This just made me think "Well.....what's wrong with his uncle? Was it the drugs? Was it a stroke?"

So basically, Scooby-doo was a dog with a speech impediment.

Scooby was subsequently taken off these kids by the authorities. Turns out Fred used to kick him.

It was the last straw after several counts of wasting police time for emergency calls about ghosts.

COW AND CHICKEN

This one was a one-off. It was the only cartoon I watched as a 12-year-old and thought "This ain't right"

A cow and a chicken, brother and sister. I remember it even baffled and confused my dad so much he told me not to watch it again...

FREAKAZOID

Literally, a bloke with ADHD.

Not so much a superhero, more as a bit of a tool with attention deficit disorder. No one ever said "Well clearly, this lad is ill." "No he's not! He's a bit of a character!"

It wasn't classed as that when I was in school, he would have had to have taken medication.

DEXTER'S LAB

Dexter's Lab was a good cartoon, but like the others, had deeper theme's. This cartoon was basically

"A bit of a loner, has no friends and spends all his time in his room."

They cut off this cartoon before it got to the episode where he walks in to his school with a gun and shoots everybody before turning the gun on himself

His sister went on to give talks on bullying.

That's all the one's I could think of. If you can think of others, don't hesitate to join in!