Oh, to be a kid nowadays. Thanks to the miracle of Atomic Power (or something like that) we have movies and TV shows, which far surpass what was available 30 years ago when I was a wee lad. OK, so maybe it's not always progress, but there's no doubt in my mind that the cartoons, for one thing, are a lot better than 30 years ago.
Maybe this isn't saying a lot. All I seem to recall now are crude artwork, jerky animation, repetitive dialog, and predictable (even to a 7 year old) plots. Let's face it, Scooby Doo was crap even before Scrappy came onto the scene.
Not that I'm an expert or anything, but it seems around the time that Ren and Stimpy came out, the cartoons underwent something of a renaissance and the studios started putting out some decent stuff. A lot of these shows put in some adult-friendly humour, most likely to bring out the best in their animators and writers, who were all of a sudden excited to work on some decent shows for a change. I have some friends in the animation biz and it really shows in the results when they are excited about a show.
So after the initially brilliant Ren and Stimpy jumped the shark, there were some poor imitations, but now it seems we have some witty, inventive and watchable-as-an-adult cartoons. I like Mucha Lucha, Cow and Chicken, The Powerpuff Girls, and Billy and Mandy.
Channel 9 are showing the excellent Sheep in the Big City on Saturday mornings, and if you're unlucky enough to be up at 6:00am I highly recommend it. The capers of General Specific and his henchman Private Public as they try to capture the hapless Sheep are really entertaining, although maybe it's just that my brain is especially receptive to this sort of thing at that hour. In this morning's episode, they went "Baa-hind the scenes" (groan) and cut to a shot of the show's writer: in his y-fronts, swinging from a tyre, poking at a typewriter, and singing "Me Writee-writee! Me Writee-writee!". It made my morning anyway. Do yaself a favour.