The REAL Reason Why Boomerang Sucks

Boomerang is in a bad place right now. There’s no denying that. The channel is badly in need of some TLC (and I don’t mean that crappy cable channel that shows reality shows about little people, toddler beauty show contestants made up like hos and women who treat their vagina like it’s a clown car.)

There are differing opinions as to what should be done with Boom: some feel the whole channel should be scrapped and re-integrated back into being a block on its’ big brother Cartoon Network where it began. Some feel it should become an ad-supported channel so they can earn some money and gain more 3rd party acquisitions like shows from the DiC and Filmation libraries like Boom’s neighbor to the North, Teletoon Retro. Some feel Turner should start taking greater advantage of the shows which they have available to them in the Turner and WBA vaults and designate certain hours and days to certain decades and eras (I’m in this camp, BTW). And of course, the retro-snobs just want all of the newer (post 1989) shows to go away and for Boom to go back to being the way it was in 2003 or 2004, when all it did was Hanna-Barbera reruns and the occasional MGM and Looney Tunes shorts.

Well, here’s your wake-up call, folks: NONE of those things are ever going to happen. Boomerang is going to stay exactly as it is now unless Turner decides to kill the channel outright or transform it into something profitable. Failing one of those scenarios, Boom will never get any better.

Hey, didn’t mean to bum you out, but that’s the truth. Boomerang is not going to improve any (unless someone at Turner gets dollar signs in their eyes), nor is it ever going to go back to being 90% H-B Rerun Boomerang. Why? I’ll tell you. No homespun crapola. No sugar coating. I’m going to share with you the reason why Boomerang is never likely to improve, and its’ certainly never going to regress. Here’s why:

1. Flat-out, Turner doesn’t care about Boomerang. Why should they? It doesn’t live off of ratings. It makes Turner no money outside of subscription fees. They just don’t care about the channel. Turner regards Boom as a dumping ground for all the shows that they don’t care about any more. It’s basically CN’s recycle bin, and that’s all they use it for.

But there’s another reason why Boom isn’t ever going to back to being early ‘all classic’ Boomerang. It’s a chilling and eerie reason, but it’s there nonetheless. There’s a HUGE elephant in the room that everyone (including myself) would rather ignore, but it’s the other reason why Boom isn’t going to change back. It’s time to turn and face that pachyderm. Ready? Sit down, take a deep breath, have a glass of water. Here it is………………….

2. We’re getting old.

Sorry, I had to say it. No one wants to face this (I sure as hell don’t), but that is why Boomerang is never going to go back to being early Boomerang, and why the newer post 1990 shows aren’t going to be leaving the channel. Face it campers, we’re all getting older.

Boomerang is never going to return to being early Boomerang, just like MTV is never going to go back to showing music videos 24/7 and Nick@Nite is never going to go back to being the Donna Reed/My Three Sons/Dobie Gillis Nick@Nite. ‘Cause we’re getting older and we’re not the primary target anymore.

Yes, as the channel’s name implies, when Boomerang was first launched it was supposed to be a haven for baby boomers to relive the cartoons of their youth, but here’s the thing: as of this writing the Gen Xers are in the same place in their lives that the boomers were in when Boomerang was first launched as its’ own channel back in 2000.

The problem with marketing a so-called “classic TV” channel of any kind is that time never stops moving forward. What’s considered “old” or “classic” changes from generation to generation, from decade to decade, and in some cases, from year to year. We’re experiencing with stations like Boomerang and Nick@Nite what our parents and grandparents experienced when the elevator music stations that they used to listen to got replaced with soft rock.

The 18 to 20-year-old demographic is usually the audience most coveted by TV networks because they attract the most advertising dollars, and people who are old enough to have grown up watching 50’s, 60’s and 70’s shows firsthand are currently outside of that demographic. The kids who grew up watching 50’s and 60’s TV (including my generation, who grew up watching these shows secondhand in syndicated reruns) are either dying off, moving on to other venues (like the internet and home video) or simply are reaching an age where they can’t be persuaded to buy useless junk they don’t need by advertisers, so The Powers That Be aren’t zeroing in on us anymore; they’re focusing the attention on the Gen X-ers, Gen Y-ers and all of the other On Beyond Zebra letters who are coming after us. The 90’s kids are in their 20’s now and the 80’s kids are in their 30’s now. They want to relive the experience of watching the shows that they grew up with too. But these kids didn’t grow up watching Leave it to Beaver,  Yogi Bear, Dennis the Menace and Rocky & Bullwinkle, they grew up watching Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, The Adventures of Pete and PeteTeenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Sonic the Hedgehog. These kids don’t have fond memories of Snagglepuss and the Brady Bunch, they have fond memories of Stick Stickly and Kenan & Kel. Unfortunately for us (well, the retro-snobs, anyway), many of the folks in this generation don’t have a burning desire to watch shows from before they were born (keep in mind that they didn’t grow up with the local and syndicated venues that we did) and a great deal of them are automatically turned off by black-and-white. That’s why Nick@Nite is currently rotating The Nanny and George Lopez instead of Bewitched and Car 54, Where Are You?.

The 90’s and 00’s cartoons aren’t going off of Boomerang anytime soon, and in all likelihood their presence is going to increase before it decreases, so we Boomers are just going to have to learn to share. Boomerang isn’t a baby boomer’s channel anymore, deal with it. Be thankful you’re still at least getting a portion of that Old School Cool instead of the vintage stuff getting tossed by the wayside altogether. Yes, Boom is bad now. But It could be much, much worse.

I’m looking at you.

3 thoughts on “The REAL Reason Why Boomerang Sucks

  1. even now in days people are still trying to get the old boomerang. they can’t understand that we will never have it again. it is gone forever. there have been videos of people thinking it will come back one day but it will never be. they are so annoying when they think it will come back. BOOMERANG IS JUST CARTOON NETWORK AND THAT’S IT. there was a site of to bring back the old boomerang but it was in 2016 and now we are in 2021. people should know by now that the classic boomerang will never come back again. so we are gonna stay whit this boomerang cartoon network logo.


    1. Expecting the Boomerang channel to return to it’s glory days is even less likely to happen now with the current state of TV entertainment. The thing that no one wants to admit is that digital bonus channels such Boomerang, Nicktoons and Disney X-D are the product of a bygone era. These rerun channels aren’t needed now that every major network and studio has a streaming service of some kind. Boomerang (the channel) is just going to stay the way it is now until Warner Bros. either shuts down the channel or remakes it into something else entirely. The future of Boomerang is Boomerang Online. That’s it. Anyone who wants to experience a semblance of old-school Boomerang should subscribe to the streaming service before it becomes a button on HBO Max.


    2. Back in the day (around 1992-1995-ish), Boomerang was just a programming block on Cartoon Network. Boomerang the channel wasn’t launched until 2000, and it wasn’t in order to preserve the classics or whatever the PR people claimed; it was because the Cartoon-Cartoons, Toonami and the newer 3rd party acquisitions were increasing and taking up more and more space on the network, and when newer, more commercially viable programming needs more air space, the older stuff and canceled reruns gotta go, so the higher-ups at CN ghettoized the older shows to a digital tier bonus ‘junk drawer’ channel and charged subscribers an additional tier fee in order to watch them. Boomerang (the channel) was a flawed idea from the get-go, since the way it was set up, it couldn’t make CN any real money other than subscription fees.

      Advertisers avoid all-rerun channels like Boomerang, Nicktoons and Toon Disney in droves because sponsors don’t want to run spots on a channel that doesn’t air anything new; this is why Nitcktoons switched to the commercial Nicktoons Network, Toon Disney launched Jetix, which expanded more and more to the point where the block took up about 85% of the channel’s schedule and got triple the ratings of the Toon Disney shows (which eventually led to its’ becoming Disney X-D), and Boomerang eventually attempted that soft reboot a few years ago, which was a big fat joke. Add to that how over time, audiences get older and change, so presently the audience clamoring for 60’s to 90’s nostalgia is too narrow a market for a network devoted solely to it to work anymore, not to mention being outside of target demographic that Warner wants to attract with the channel.

      The Boomerang brand does slightly better internationally, because they don’t just air reruns of old shows. Boomerang US never fully morphed itself to that.

      Long story short, anyone still pining away in the hopes of Boomerang one day returning to its’ 2000’s era format are basically leaving the porchlight on for Amelia Earnhardt. Digital tier bonus channels were already an expensive luxury that didn’t earn their parent companies huge ratings; cord-cutting, the internet and streaming services have rendered them obsolete. Boomerang’s future is to become a button on HBO Max, that’s the only viable fate I see happening to it.


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