Western artists and storytellers collaborated with influences from Japan
To create the most memorable stories in western animation.
The recurring themes were
The exploration of the unknown frontier,
The synergy between man and machine,
And the study of the Institution.
This was the golden age of cartoons.
As most of the readers of this blog are children of the 80’s, I’d like to present an observation about how cartoons in the late 90’s till the present have degraded into a combination of the following formula:
1. slapstick humor
2. toilet humor
3. pop culture references to the 80’s (we’ve grown up, so we’re still the target market)
Here are my thoughts on why this has happened:
The dawn of CG in the mid 90’s put a refocus of the market to special effects rather than content. The toy industry, which kept the cartoons alive, dwindled as video games replaced die cast metal and plastic paraphernalia as the medium for entertainment. Great story still exists today, mostly in the form of Japanese animation that took over where Western cartoons died (Giant Robo, Ranma 1/2, Captain Harlock, Evangelion, and the like).
Let me take you on a trip back with the following intro links. I suggest you watch them in succession for maximum effect.
Tiger Sharks (showed on Mondays as part of Comic Strip)
Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors
Mighty Orbots (only ran for one season)
Galaxy Rangers (this show had my ultimate favorite theme song)
So, can you name more? Which were your favorite 80’s cartoons? This fun 80’s flashback post is an example of how content will always be king. No amount of technology can compete with well-weaved stories. Either I have a point, or I’m just getting old. 🙂
P.S. Of course there were some really campy but otherwise entertaining shows like Captain N: Game Master (Nintendo’s marketing campaign) and … *snicker* Chuck Norris and the Karate Commandos. As for the latter, can you count the number of times the narrator says Chuck Norris’ name?