Can we rastify him 10%?
February 16, 2005 12:46 PM   Subscribe

[Re: merchandising] "That's the ultimate goal of all kids programming, if we score, it's a gold mine."
posted by Capn (14 comments total)

 
Excellent! (and by "excellent" I mean appalling...) We would also have accepted, "Action Figure Man - Episode One: How to buy Action Figure Man."
posted by idontlikewords at 1:01 PM on February 16, 2005


This is no secret - Saturday morning cartoons in the 80's were produced by toy companies and given for free to the networks with the toy companies hoping to profit from merch sales. It all arose from the requirement that networks show a certain amount of "educational programming" every week - Saturday was the cheapest time they could give up for that purpose.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 1:14 PM on February 16, 2005


merch sounds dirty.
posted by mrgrimm at 1:32 PM on February 16, 2005


Did someone mention The Merch???
posted by dougunderscorenelso at 1:42 PM on February 16, 2005


The plots are action-oriented, filled with chases and fights. Each character possesses a special crime-fighting power.

Sounds familiar?


Super Globetrotters?

(I had to dig that out because doug_nelso beat me to The Merch.)
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 1:44 PM on February 16, 2005


I ask that henceforth this "bunny" be referred to as "Bugs Fugly".
Thank you,
num-
posted by numlok at 1:57 PM on February 16, 2005


This continues today... for example, Mattel makes the Hot Wheels line of toy cars. They've just launched a new line of Hot Wheels toys called "Acceleracers". At the same time, they hire some 2nd rate production company to create an fucking terrible animated "Aceleracers" series. Then, during the Kids Upfront, Mattels says they will spend X million advertising dollars on Cartoon Network ONLY if the Network agrees to program this shit-ass cartoon during the year. Of course, the Network folds like a card table and legitimate, innovative cartoons are bumped in favor of the commercial crap.

Despite the Childrens' Television Act of 1990, your kids' eyeballs are still sold to the highest bidder.
posted by BobFrapples at 1:57 PM on February 16, 2005


Bugs Fugly looks very mean. Like The Merch if not enough swag gets sold.
posted by anthill at 2:06 PM on February 16, 2005


numlok:
IT BURNS, SHUT IT OFF

WB seems to insist on hanging on to these old characters and constantly pushing them through more tired exercises down on Memory Lane. "Just because it's Bugs Bunny!" is not a damn reason to keep it on the air constantly.
Disney has kept their characters fresh by (and I say this but shudder while typing) not exploiting them so much; keeping them out of needless and uninviting feature films and sad Saturday-morning retreads and leaving them in their iconic vault. Goof Troop was a noteable exception, but it didn't smack of "well, we got these characters already. I ggggggguuuuessss let's make a show where.....uh....they do things kids like?"

I don't hold any major WB characters sacred, because the company doesn't either, but it kind of bothers me that my children will know Bugs Bunny from endless crappy jean jackets and marketing tie-ins. And I'll try to explain, "Well, in the SIXTIES, you know, this was better," and they rightfully won't care.
posted by dougunderscorenelso at 2:07 PM on February 16, 2005


dougunderscorenelso:
The ongoing crapification of the Looney Tunes franchise is exactly the reason that I started collecting the original cartoons, so that when I have kids, I can say "turn that off, and let me show you what the real Looney Tunes were like." Well, that plus the fact that I enjoy them myself. (Only 10 more toons to go, and I'm set. Then I just need kids...)
posted by sysinfo at 4:09 PM on February 16, 2005


Other strange and cringe-enducing news from the "KidsWB" fall schedule announcement:

A glimpse at all the character designs for Loonatics (my interpretation - Bugs in center, clockwise from top: Taz with whirlwind, Road Runner, Lola in lavender, a very angry Daffy and Wile E. with rocket on back.)

Two other new shows:
Coconut Fred's Fruit Salad Island
A society of talking tropical fruits, starring brown round and fuzzy Fred.
Johnny Test
No, not ripping off that other Jonny: "the adventures of a fearless 11-year-old boy, his genetically engineered super dog Poochie and his 13-year-old super genius scientist twin sisters, Susan and Mary, who use Johnny as their guinea pig for their out-of-this-world scientific experiments."

The Mexican-wresting-based "Mucha Lucha" (which I actually sometimes enjoyed) is cancelled.

On the new season of "The Batman" (which supposedly chronicles the Dark Knight's early years in the super biz) will bring in a teen-aged Batgirl. (Batgirl and no Robin? These cartooners must be scared bleepless over 'ambiguously gayness'!)

Discuss...
posted by wendell at 4:33 PM on February 16, 2005


No more Mucha Lucha???
That was the best idea for a kids show since....well, all of the other great kids shows that they've had recently.

And to think I grew up watching Captain god-damn N.
posted by dougunderscorenelso at 5:36 PM on February 16, 2005


that's right kiddies, because the original Warner Bros characters were only drawn so that they could form part of the patina of your misty childhood memories...

Warner Bros has always been involved in selling product, and I'm not sure why they have to apologise for that.
posted by wilful at 10:54 PM on February 16, 2005


This is the problem with continually extending copyright. The same characters are milked until they're worthless, because it's cheaper and safer than creativity. If people stop tuning in to the same junk, as it seems they are, then maybe we can get the public domain back.

Will you also accept "That's Familiar"?
posted by Eideteker at 4:42 AM on February 17, 2005


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