December 17, 2007

After Us

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Idiot Box,Youth Rights — Katrina @ 8:31 pm

I’m seeing a disturbing trend among people around my age, and it is something that has always been expected of us, and it happened to every generation before us. It is the disregard for what came “after our time”.

I grew up on the cartoons of the late 80’s and early to mid 90’s. Good stuff. Or at least we say so now. Our old Saturday morning shows and after school specials now sit among sitcoms on the shelves of Best Buy as DVD collections. Nice.

Not that you’ll see today’s cartoons in that section. They’re over in the kids section. They’ll be with the “grown up” stuff in about fifteen to twenty years on whatever medium is popular then. Not that there’s any objective reason for the separation. Just the audience, I guess.

But I’m getting a little off my point. I detect a snootiness in those my age regarding the cartoons we watched and look back on now with such sweet nostalgia. In all this, we hold “our” cartoons to be better than the ones that came out around late 90’s to today.

Well, we believe our cartoons were great, but you know what? The kids born in the 70’s didn’t think so! Just like we do now, they were sneering at us, unable to understand why we watched that crap. They won’t say it as much now since we’re grown up (and we all know adults got to stick together against those awful kids, right?), but they certainly believed it.

I mean, I don’t think the more recent cartoons are that bad. Not bad at all. Some are quite cool. But, shit, not like anyone my age or older would give them a chance. They came out after their time, they never got into it, so it must suck. It must be damaging the next generation, who aren’t so privileged to be seeing the “better” cartoons we grew up on, the ones the 70’s kids thought were damaging our minds!

The styles change over time, sure. Such is to be expected. There’s still lots of variety (though lots of sameness) among the shows of any given time period.

Then there’s the other aspect. Question for those my age who think our cartoons were so divine. If they were so divine, under what circumstances did you stop watching it? Was it because they stopped playing it? Or, more likely, was it because you didn’t feel like watching it anymore? You decided there were better things to watch or otherwise better things to do with your time. You decided you were too old for it. And now that you’re a grown up, you’re doing what all grown ups do: run screaming back to your childhood with your thumb in your mouth, longing for mommy and daddy to tell you what to do and think to protect you from the scary things in life. That’s another issue altogether, but part of it is looking back with rosy colored glasses at your childhood and every aspect of it. And it involves the nostalgia of the old shows.

Not saying the nostalgia is necessarily a symptom of it. Some of them, I really don’t remember why I stopped watching them. Whenever I stopped watching a show I had liked, it felt like a breakup. I didn’t want to think about it. I didn’t want anything to remind me of it. I wanted to pretend it didn’t exist. I think I began to feel like my continued attachment to the show was an embarrassment to me. Maybe it was how much I knew my parents hated everything I watched (while of course believing everything they watched as kids was so much better). Maybe some quality about the shows just wasn’t fulfilling me. Could be any number of things. Things that, ten to fifteen years later, seem to no longer be the case as I and others my age look to our old cartoons and smile. Maturity? Hard to say. For me, there is still one show I want no part of to this day, LOL. Nope, not saying what.

But in all this, we continue to sneer at our juniors for their tastes, for what the glowing box in the living room is providing for them. How dare they like such garbage? Or, maybe, you can sit down and watch it and see for yourself it’s not that bad. You’ll come to that conclusion in a decade anyway when they’re sneering at their juniors for the “trash” they’re watching. Because, God forbid, you can’t ever take the kids’ side in such a battle.

3 Comments

  1. What show do you not want anything to do with? :doitnow:

    Comment by Adamantaimai — December 19, 2007 @ 2:40 am

  2. Excellent points.

    Comment by KPalicz — August 7, 2009 @ 7:49 am

  3. Very good rant.

    Comment by JerseyJ — August 21, 2009 @ 7:22 pm

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