Unpopular Opinions/That’s Warner Brothers!: Live-Action on Cartoon Network

Happy New Year, everyone! Let’s start 2023 with a big ol’ hot take:

We’re not opposed to the idea of live-action shows airing on Cartoon Network!

Yeah, yeah, I know. hear us out. We used to be like you. Years ago, whenever the subject of Cartoon Network daring to air live-action would come up, our usual reaction was….

There was a time when we regarded the very thought of CN airing live-action programming to be akin to painting a moustache on the Mona Lina, but over time we’ve either mellowed with age or have gotten even more insane, whatever you want to call it, but we’re not 100% opposed to the idea anymore.

“But guys…CARTOON Network!” I hear you say, and yes, I agree. Cartoon Network initially pledged to air “cartoons and nothing but cartoons, all day, every day, until the end of time”, I get it, but here’s the thing: animated shows are expensive and take time to produce; unless your parent company has a HUGE backlog of cartoons to fall back on, they’d need something to keep viewers occupied while the new animated shows are being made, and these days CN like most networks prefers to run their older cartoons online as opposed to on the main TV channel. The reason that Nickelodeon and Disney Channel rely so heavily on live-action kidcoms (aside from the obvious fact that they’re popular with kids) is because live-action shows are cheaper and take less time to produce: Disney Channel and Nick can whip out 2 or 3 episodes of Lizzie McGuire or Bunk’d or Henry Danger or Game Shakers in the time it takes to produce 1 episode of Phineas & Ferb or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. So there’s a practical reason to employ some live-action programming, even on animation channel.

Now it’s usually at this point that someone will inevitably point to Cartoon Network’s notorious flop programming block CN Real, which we covered here a while back in Keepin’ It Real…Real Bad!. CN Real was a turkey, no one’s denying that, but as Jason (Goldstar) mentioned in that article, the reason why the CN Real block failed wasn’t because they dared to air live-action, it was because they were airing the wrong kind of live-action. What’s the first word in this channel’s name?

There ya go.

If Cartoon Network were to ever start incorporating live-action shows and movies into their schedules, certain requirements need to be met. Live-action on CN could work, provided it’s the right kind of live-action. Reality shows? No. Those don’t gel with cartoon lovers, least of all kids; generally speaking, the only non-scripted shows that kids tend to dig are game shows. If a CN show isn’t going to be a cartoon, then it should at least be “toon adjacent”. Some examples of acceptable live-action for CN would be:

Live-Action/Animation hybrids, i.e., shows that combine animation with live-action…
…Shows starring puppets…
..,or people in wacky costumes…
…Shows based on animated properties; for example, run Filmation’s Shazam! series…
…to coincide with the release of the new Shazam! movie or the first movie airing on ACME Night…
…Shows which evoke the spirit of cartoons or comics, like Super Sentai…
…Live-action hosts…
…Or shows that are so wacky and crazy that they’re like cartoons.

This kind of live-action could work, provided that the animation to live-action ratio stays at something like 70:30 or 60:40 in favor of the cartoons. It may or may not every happen, but if Cartoon Network is ever to open itself up to the possibility of live-action again, they should never forget their channel’s, name, history, theme and roots. If they really ever have to air live-action, it should be animated live-action.

-And yeah, I admit this is partially a way of campaigning to get The Aquabats’ Super Show! back on TV. This show was awesome and should be airing on TV somewhere; it just should.

Yearly Wrap-Up 2022

Howdy, folks.

Well, gang, here we are once again. The last blog post of the year, and let me you, this is one year I’m looking forward to see in the rearview mirror. You want to know what I thought about 2022?

“Oh, wowsy, wowsy, woo-woo! Miserable year, wasn’t it?”

Well maybe I wouldn’t go that far, but this year was a rough one. Too often, there have been things happening in real life that left us feeling this way:

And as a result of being sidelined by so much jackassery, we haven’t been able to devote as much time to this site as we would have liked, and we’re not happy about that. This coupled with the fact that at the start of 2022, I was in a really bad place, feeling just a little bit…

So with that, it’s time to bury 2022 into the cold, cold ground and look ahead to 2023. I’m cautiously optimistic.

Overall, we don’t have a whole lot of new stuff to announce now (of course, that could change at any time. We’ll keep you posted). The main thing that we’d like to do is make the giant leap from blogging to video production. There are a few things coming down the pike, if we get the time and space to sit down and work on them. Damon’s Pop Dream for Animal Jam and my What The Funny for Regular Show may resume. Initially, we put them on hold because in case we wanted to continue them in video form. Speaking of WTF, Damon and I have considered doing another What The Funny miniseries for WB’s Jellystone!

One good thing about this prospect is that with both of us working on a miniseries together, we should get it completed in half the time. As previously noted, now these 2 miniseries are semi-regular or recurring thing here, we won’t be numbering the individual entries anymore.

Also, as Damon mentioned in an earlier blog post, there will be some more posts that don’t fall into any particular category. They’ll just be stuff that we want to talk about that we do for our own amusement.

Overall, hopefully, there will be more activity here in 2023. It would be nice if maybe we could finally be able to switch to video format next year (fingers crossed).

So see ya, 2022. You won’t be missed. Here’s looking forward to another 12 months of nonsense. Happy New Year, everyone!