The Slow Death of <Strike>Cartoon</strike> Network The Slow Death of <Strike>Cartoon</strike> Network
Bad Ideas

The Slow Death of Cartoon Network

Guess who else doesn’t like the new CN? The people who used to make cartoons at the network, like Chowder creator C.H. Greenblatt. He posted the following comment on his blog a couple days ago: “As I sit here on an empty floor of an empty building looking at all the empty animation offices, I can at least put this on endless loop for some comfort.” The endless loop refers to this ignominious piece of video.

Meanwhile, at Cartoon Network’s executive offices, where the blind continue to lead the blind into irrelevance, they’re convinced that they’ve discovered what kids really want to watch on TV nowadays: golf. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has the farcical details about one of the network’s new programming initiatives, which involves teaming up with the PGA of America to offer live-action golf shows for kids. “We have to work hard to ensure that we continue reaching families and young people for golf to be relevant in the future,” said Joe Steranka, chief executive officer of the PGA of America. “The Cartoon Network complements the PGA of America’s leadership in junior golf.”

If you wish, there’s a Boycott CN Real group on Facebook. Frankly, I’m just about ready to label it a lost cause and move on.

  • Wait. Have all of the cartoons been cancelled?

  • Marc Baker

    If i ever meet a Cartoon Network exec in my lifetime, i would say to him, to quote the late Heath Ledger, ‘I have a pencil, want to watch me make it disappear?’

  • tony mccarson

    amid:”Frankly, I’m just about ready to label it a lost cause and move on.”

    what amid said was wrong!

    cartoon-watching people, do not give up and don’t move on! keep on protesting against the corporation that is responsible for the disgusting version of “cartoon network”, and make “cartoon network” the CARTOON network again!

    giving up and moving on can NOT work on important causes!

    why? here is 1 example.

    should U.S.A. & it’s allies give up on destroying & defeating al-qaeda and move on?

    NO! because the al-qaeda are the new forces of evil since the world war 2 axis!

    if we keep on working for defeating the wrong (especially the corporation that ruined “cartoon network”) , we WILL win!

    so remember,

    the forces of good, the forces of truth, & the forces of right NEVER give up!

  • See, I knew if I said “This can’t get any stupider,” I would just end up being proven wrong.

  • All this talk about the network dying – Screw the lip flapping – its a lost cause – the same way all the networks never remain true to their original ideas – so A.) Start your own network of cartoons and keep true to your mission – you already have a list of great animators and shorts in your Brew Tv section – find some more of these similar projects and make a greater and more exciting section of shorts and shows – you cant tell me theres not more out there waiting to be seen. So rightly opinionated you obviously know how to properly run some good cartoons – and I think theres a ton of people backing the Brew – AWN seems as if it has been trying this out – however AWN is in no comparison – and frankly they fall short on entertainment and opinion – soon too they will be accepting live action if they havnt already B.) Fund some projects – the great list you have on Brew Tv needs to be making more – regardless if theyre 30 sec or feature length – plus a small fund is better than no fund at all. Take advantage of this Cartoon Network fuck up – be the new Animation Network – you guys know whats up.

  • victoria

    Well at least golf is a step away from the “lets make everything sexy or hip hop” which I thought they would try next. I know this is still sorta a kids network but after seeing how they sexed up Transformers 2 anything goes.

  • Mandy

    Wait. They still play Tom and Jerry for an hour a few times a week…at 6:30AM.

  • Barx

    ignominious?…hadta look it up, but it is the perfect word to sum things up thats for certain…..sigh…..

  • Brian Kidd

    Sadly, the promise of being able to find a channel that caters to your particular niche has slowly been dismantled into 300 channels, each indistinguishable from the next. I wanted to ditch cable entirely this past year, but the wife wouldn’t let me because she can’t live without her DVR. I told her that we could either buy a Tivo or I could build a DVR, but she won’t go for it. Sigh.

    RIP Cartoon Network. It was fun while it lasted.

  • Mathew

    Kids love watching Golf on TV? WTF! Things have certainly changed since I was 11 years old. I suppose Tiger has kinda made golf cool but I still think that watching it on TV is a good cure for insomnia. The only thing more boring than watching golf on TV is watching lawn bowls. The only thing about golf that I think will appeal to kids is the funny pants that they wear when they play.

  • This CN business continues to baffle me.

    On one side, i encourage the network to look forward and look at alternative programs that portray “cartoons” in some way(*animated or live-action comedic) and not necessarily for kids either(*adults like em too)

    But golf?! What’s cartoon about that? Unless it’s animated in some way.

    Truthfully. now this boycot idea looks more interesting than before. THese exec’s shouldn’t be getting away with this(*Unless its a privately owned company, then they can do whatever heck they want. I just won’t watch. It’s their money)

  • FORE!

  • Jason

    While I deplore what’s become of CN, Greenblatt can only blame himself for Chowder’s demise. I just don’t get why new-toon creators can’t understand that the purpose of their product – and it IS a product, not just “art” – is to entertain kids. And yet few new toons have a kid sensibility. Instead they consist of what seems to be a self-indulgent exercise in self-expression. Thus we get loopy, all-over-the-place stuff like Chowder and truly ugly excesses like Flapjack – seriously, what kid wants to watch such animated hideousness? Certainly toons shouldn’t be all Care Bears and Smurfs, but I do wish toonsters would stop trying to emulate Tim Burton. All too often they fail – and then they blame the networks when kids won’t watch. Sheesh.

  • Kat

    I can find no words that adequately express my sadness and disgust.

  • because facebook groups are the highest form of protest in america…

  • Kevin

    For some reason I’m not surprised at the impending doom of CN, as stated many times before, the handwriting’s been on the wall for some time now…When people who have no clue try to run things such as CN they inevitably make the same mistakes over and over: more live action programming and a total disrespect for decent cartoons, and this latest fiasco with golf is just another nail in their coffin .
    Maybe this will end up being a good thing in the long run, as they screw up more and more maybe the ratings will continue to decline and it’ll become a self fulfilling prophecy…then someone with brains can either swoop in and revamp things before they get closed down for good, or said person(s) can start a new network and really usher in a new “golden age” of animation….at least one can hope for this to happen.

  • Richard

    Wow. “Golf?!”
    I mean, I knew Cartoon Network doesn’t want to use animation, but I thought it was the “cartoon” kind.

  • Matt

    It looks like the “Jackass Channel” now.

    But I’m sure the change is because CN is making their own original content – all of which is reality TV and thus the cheapest form there is – to maximize their revenue stream. Heck, that commercial itself was done on the cheap. Andrew WK? Ugh.

    Maybe CN needs the extra dough with all the advertisers drying up. Or maybe they’re just greedy old f*cks who should have never been in charge of something called “Cartoon Network” to begin with.

  • Zork Nemesis

    I have to admit, I’m morbidly curious to see the turnout for Cartoon Network’s panels at San Diego Comic Con. The word ‘awkward’ won’t be descriptive enough. I can already feel the waves of contempt that are going to pour out on anyone sitting at a microphone, from all the onlooking nerds with torches and pitchforks.

  • Charles

    i agree with amid. let it die. time for something else.

  • Brianne

    I was only joking the other day that they’d probably be doing a “Golf and Watch Paint Dry” show, I didn’t know it was REAL! Jeez, wasn’t the person who is making these decisions once a kid? All my grandma would watch at her house was golf and soap operas, and that is when I found videogames.
    Also, isn’t golf a sport that is more fun to play than WATCH?

  • Zork Nemesis

    BTW, Chowder isn’t hideous at all. Some extremely talented people worked on that show, and it was bright, vibrant, cute, and entertaining. I’d love to hear this Tim Burton argument, mostly because I’ll probably laugh at it. Maybe if that was applied to Flapjack, which goes out of its way to be grotesque, but is still very well made.

    I was actually going to say that maybe Chowder’s concept was too niche and high brow for its low brow execution. Some people didn’t like Ratatouille either for similar reasons (I personally thought it was excellent). But I enjoyed it. Maybe I was one of the few.

  • corey

    Everyone read Bohn’s comment.

    Amid, with all support for new media I would think you would have already given up on TV in general.

    Again, Bohn seems to have nailed it. ‘Comment of the moment’?

  • DanO

    I’m left to assume that the head of creative content, Rob Sorcher is an avid golfer.
    As well as an idiot.

  • Tom Heres

    Don’t worry. Once they realize they can’t license any of this shit there will be a change upstairs at CN, with the pointed heads rolling and new blood replacing them. Let’s keep up the fight, so that the new replacement suits reestablish their animation agenda.

    The most poorly run network since “SyFy”.

  • @Jason, Chowder was not a loopy all-over-the-place cartoon. Neither is Flapjack. Both are well written and funny to watch if you take the time, and/or can actually FIND new episodes. Watch some of it before you decide to badmouth it.

    If you care to look at the ratings it actually does very well considering CN’s whack a mole programming schedule whereby they never put new ones on and never put shows on at the same time (except for total Drama Island and Action of course).

    C.H. Greenblatt does not have himself to blame for the demise of Chowder, there’s only one fella who’s to blame and his initials are RS. All studio execs kill off the babies of their predecessors, it’s tradition and RS is no different.

  • This is just a reply to Tony McCarson.

    Please don’t mix entertainment with politics, especially kids stuff, when it comes to reasoning. Take a reality check my friend – you obviously need a chill holiday. good luck

  • I sincerely hope C.H. Greenblatt can land his feet and continue to work on cartoons, whether its “Chowder” or another new show. And hopefully for a network that won’t screw him over.

  • Nelson

    I believe the CN stands for “CLUELESS NETWORK”

  • This is why I have a magical thing called DirecTV, with which I can record/save any show I want! I don’t bother with other programs. I look for favorite shows like THE MIGHTY B! and MAKING FIENDS on Nickelodeon channels and record that, and filter out all the SPONGEBOB hype. (Notice that 90% of Nick’s cartoon programming is made up of constant SPONGEBOB marathons!)

    I can at least take consolation in the fact that the CN Real shows are bombing, even with kids, and that the few new cartoons coming on (especially the Canadian stuff like 6TEEN and the TOTAL DRAMA series) are doing much better.

    I still think that renaming the channel “Acme Network” (Ted Turners intended name for CN) makes better sense. I mean, if the brainless execs really must have a Nickelodeon/Disney-like channel!

  • Tom Heres

    John Paul, I don’t think Direct TV will allow you to record programs that are not being broadcast. Check the user’s manual again ;)

    The two cartoons you cite as successes are animated versions of successful reality shows, by the way. I hate them.

  • Jonah Sidhom

    I don’t even have cable anymore, but I can see that I’m not missing much. CN was one of the last few channels that played decent stuff when I cancelled the subscription, and that’s when they started playing live-action movies in 2003.

    Apparently it’s just gone downhill from there.

  • silly execs.

    with no animators around who will they blame when the ratings plummet?

  • Jason

    @Mark Milo, I have watched both toons. Just about every episode of each. And I stand by my description of them. And for the record, they did fail. Why? Oh, right, it’s the network’s fault. Or it’s the fault of the unwashed masses because the material was too “hip” for them. Yadda yadda yadda. I’ve heard and read it all before. Excuses, excuses. And what’s sad about that is that other up-and-coming creators will fail to learn from other’s mistakes, because after all, their mentors have failed to learn: hey, I’m a genuis, it’s the network’s/audience’s fault. Again, I say: sheesh.

    @Zork: I didn’t mean to say that Chowder was hideous. It was imaginatively designed, and bright and colorful, as you say. But the toon never connected with kids enough to guarantee its survival. By contrast, Spongebob and even the now-degraded Fairly Odd Parents managed to make that connection. I’m just suggesting that toon makers ought to stop and think about what kids like instead of trying to put avant-garde and wink-wink-at-the-adults schtick in their product. All too often, that stuff doesn’t impress anybody (mostly because it’s badly done) – not even kids.

  • TheGunheart

    Aaah! I can’t takes it no more! Somebody hand me a rake!

  • Tom Heres,

    6TEEN isn’t a reality show, it’s an animated teen sitcom. I mostly like the designs and animation, which are impressive, for Flash-like animation! I saw that show when it aired briefly on Nickelodeon in early 2005. But you know Nick; if it’s not SPONGEBOB, it gets cancelled. And 3 years later, 6TEEN is doing better on CN. Go figure!

    The TOTAL DRAMA stuff is a spoof of reality shows (and better to watch than reality shows, which I can’t stand!). Design-wise, it sort of reminds me of MTV’s late, lamented CLONE HIGH USA (another Canadian cartoon), only toned down. Too bad we’ll never see something like that on Adult Swim. Matter of fact, all of MTV’s cartoons would be perfectly at home on AS.

    And don’t worry, DirecTV and I are getting along just fine… :)

  • mike birt

    @jason: you are very much entitled to your own opinion, but you seem to be mis-informed about a few things. chowder and flapjack have both been doing quite well with the audience since they began. the main reason they are getting swept under is because the foolish new executives don’t think they are going to fit in well enough with this stupid new identity they are trying cram into cartoon network. oh, and i think i should point out that almost every good, memorable cartoon since the 30’s was made by people not trying to think of what kids would find funny, but what they themselves would find funny.

  • Jay Sabicer

    Time to chime in: TV is in sad shape, nobody can really argue with that. With the economy in the toilet and ad revenue evaporating, every network (broadcast and cable) are scurrying around in a panic, looking for something – anything that will bring people in like the cattle they usually are. Since they no longer teach original thinking in B schools, this should not be of any surprise to anyone.

    Cartoon Network originally was a “rerun” network that didn’t have to worry all that much about profitability; all their properties belonged to Ted Turner, and the ad revenue, though paltry compared to Nick, was enough to justify to start experimenting with “first run” programming. Ratings improved, ad rates went up and Time Warner snatched up all of Ted’s cable empire. Now, there was REAL money to be made, so execs crawled up from the slime that is Hollywood and migrated to Atlanta. When the numbers didn’t meet expectations on the bottom line, well, you see what happens. The response you’d probably get from Time Warner is: Wait! We have Boomerang, showing you practically the collective work of the original CN, and commercial-free, to boot, stop whining! Perhaps this is part of their plan, converting CN into a Fox Reality/Golf Channel knockoff, since advertisers are still buying airtime on those nets. Boomerang converts to CN Classic and starts adding commercials to their mix and the cycle begins again.

    Capitalism is the worst system out there (until you compare it will all the other systems).

  • Hey everybody! why not vent some of this aggression at the jackoffs responsible! Go here and let them know how you feel!

    I did! It’s fun!

  • If this is where (C)N is going then maybe it is time to surrender.

    I’m not sure what’s happening with Teletoon but I would figure that they’ll be contacting Disney a lot more often to get its shows to air on Disney XD than (C)N. They’ve already done it with Jimmy Two Shoesl. (i’m glad J2S is on that channel simply because it’s getting good treatment there)

  • Ron

    A. Wait so when was Chowder cancelled? I missed that announcement.

    B. Right on Bohn! If Amid and Jerry don’t do it, someone will.

    I’m sad this is happening but at the same time it’s par for the course with this kind of thing. Look at Disney as an example. They’ve died and been reborn several times now. The most recent incarnation of true “Disney Magic” was Pixar -which has now, for all intents and purposes taken over Disney.

    So I’m not worried. Just because CN won’t be showing good cartoons made by cartoonists anymore doesn’t mean that cartoons will cease to exist or that that kind of creativity will not have a home somewhere.

    You’ll see. Something will surface that will be a new mecca for creative people who want to make funny cartoons just because they’re funny cartoons. People may not miss it until it’s gone but that’s how it goes sometimes. Again look at Disney. They’re finally bringing back 2D animation. People don’t want to let it die.

  • Jon Reeves

    OK, so it’s officially gone from tragedy to farce.

    At least there are still a few bright spots in the Adult Swim lineup, like Robot Chicken, Superjail, and the Venture Bros. (and I have high hopes for Titan Maximum).

  • Hulk

    Something else just occurred to me after viewing some of the links posted by some of you here.

    Maybe this is happening for another reason. Maybe us cartoonists don’t need corporate sponsorship to make our art anymore. Maybe this is happening because the Nina Paley’s and Bohn’s of the world are saying “fuck it. I’m just gonna make my own stuff and put it up for people to see” Why bother jumping through all those hoops and letting corporate hacks bastardize your idea? Why not just do it yourself? Sure the execs at CN might not know a good idea if it jumped up and bit them in the ass…but maybe the people with the good ideas are just making their own stuff and not bothering with the suits.

    Just hulk’s two cents.

  • Dawn

    Music Television no longer has music, why should Cartoon Network have cartoons?

  • droosan

    I have Boomerang .. and it does, indeed, ‘rock’ for being everything Cartoon Network was 15 years ago — commercial-free, to boot (I pay a bit ‘extra’ for it, though).

    .. but reports of empty offices — and practically empty studio floors — at the Cartoon Network Studio in Burbank are pretty worrisome.

  • J. A. Britton

    I recently sent this to Cartoon Networks comments line, and to their Youtube channel, thought I’d put it here as well.

    Ok guys…we all know reality shows are cheap to produce. We also know that almost ANY live action is cheaper and quicker than animation.

    So why not do something with a little intelligence and respect for both your audience AND animation?

    You want “real”?

    How about a definitive history of animation, covering not only the well know animation houses, but the lesser known and obscure studios, ala Ken Burns style?

    How about a show about the usually unseen heroes of animation, the voice artists?

    How about a show that shows real live animators working on a project from proposal to finish, competing to get their cartoon on Cartoon Network?

    Or just for pure fun, how about a live action version of the Wacky Races, with competitions for best re-creation of a cartoon vehicle that REALLY WORKS, best original cartoon style vehicle and team, or even celebrity drivers portraying the Wacky Racers in a real race?

    If it has to be “real”, at least let it involve cartoons.

  • Chris Sobieniak

    > How about a show that shows real live animators working on a project from proposal to finish, competing to get their cartoon on Cartoon Network?

    I would watch that on a daily basis! That history one wouldn’t be bad either.

  • @ John S
    took your advice and sent this little rant to and I suggest you all do the same… this is what i wrote (coulda been better but eh, i got my point across. hopefully lol) :

    “What are you doing. Seriously. What the Hell. First you get rid of your own good shows such as Power Puff Girls, Dexter, Ed Edd and Eddy, etc… but now you’re adding live action? On CARTOON Network? You were the only channel that showed all animation all the time (with the exception of a few A.S. shows such as Tim and Eric). And this was good. You have to realize that back when AS first started, and CN was still showing awesome cartoons, I did not watch anything else. Oh sure, and episode of Raymond here, Seinfeld there. Frasier and Married with Children from time to time. But 99% of the time I was on CN/AS. I had Dexter, PPG’s, Grim Adventures, ED Edd and Eddy, Home Movies, Space Ghost, Brak Show, Sea Lab… ah, the memories. Now, in all fairness, I love Flap Jack and Chowder, 6teen and Total Drama Island are a bit fun. I love the fact you aired Moribito and Death Note, as well as Eureka 7. But I see the sad state of this channel. You got live action crap being pushed by sell-out Andrew W.K. (its hard saying that about a musician you like, but you has to call its like you sees its). I was a kid once. I grew up with shows like Doug, Ren and Stimpy, Looney Tunes, Tex Avery, Transformers, Batman the Animated Series, Rocko’s Modern Life, Noozles, Adventures of Little Koala, David the Gnome, Hey Arnold, Ah! Real Monsters, Animaniacs, Freakazoid, Captain Planet, Duck Tales, Darkwing Duck, Tail Spin, tiny Toons, Pinky and the Brain, Garfield, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Jetsons, Alvin and the Chipmunks, Flinstones, Yogi Bear, Inspector Gadget, Scooby Doo, Woody Woodpecker, pop-eye, X-Men, classic Disney cartoons, … holly shit my childhood was filled with awesome animation. I admit, I’m spoiled. I grew up on some of the best of the best cartoons from the 30’s to the late 90’s. I grew up during a time when not only where they showing the best cartoons of the past, but the new series at the time were actually half-way decent. Yes there were bad toons back then (really, really bad ones). But I had so much to choose… Now, there are only a few series between you and Nick to choose from. I understand that times are tough. You need to diversify. I can understand that. But… Destroy Build Destroy? Brainrush? for that I give you a big WTF! Not that the other live action fair is much better, but at least its not so mind numbingly boring. And to be honest, I noticed the decline in quality quite a while ago. I had a moderate sized screen TV in my tiny tiny room just to watch CN/AS… Got rid of the TV months ago. Despite how far you have let your channel go, I will always remember the good times. I will never forget my first viewing of Iron Giant, which was on CN. Thank you for that.

    But all good things…”

  • Oluseyi

    > So why not do something with a little intelligence and respect for both your audience AND animation?

    Your notion of Cartoon Network’s audience, while probably more accurate, is worlds away from CN execs’ notion of their audience – not to mention their DESIRED audience.

    > Maybe this is happening because the Nina Paley’s and Bohn’s of the world are saying “fuck it. I’m just gonna make my own stuff and put it up for people to see” Why bother jumping through all those hoops and letting corporate hacks bastardize your idea? Why not just do it yourself?

    Getting paid is a lot harder that way. Nina Paley has a day job, and took five years to make her film. What does Rob Bohn do for money? It turns out that living is expensive, and making a living as an independent animation auteur (note AUTEUR!) is nigh impossible – I’ve done the research.

    Cartoon Network is dead. In a contracting economy, with relatively stale, niche content, Cartoon Network doesn’t make business sense. MTV stopped showing music videos because you can watch any music video you want at any time online (and it finally gave us; it needed to give people another reason to watch. There may be a business case for an online solution that’s all animation, all the time, though – an institutionalized variation on Hulk’s idea. Maybe some smart entrepreneur can figure out how to make that happen PROFITABLY.

  • Mathew at 7.42am on 07/03/09 says: “The only thing more boring than watching golf on TV is watching lawn bowls”. So you are an expert on what kids want to watch on TV are you Mathew? To you lawn bowls may be boring, but to thousands of young people around the world lawn bowls is one of the new “in” sports. In Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Great Britain and even Canada children are flocking to lawn bowls as a new school sport. But if you are an American would probably wouldn’t even be aware of that. All you guys know anything about is ten pin bowling which involves hurling a ball exactly the same distance at the same speed end after end … no other bowling balls to negotiate around, no wind to affect the path of the bowl, no shade and sunlight to affect the pace of the surface … just repetitive sterile chucking of a ball at full pelt down a polished wooden lane … and you reckon LAWN BOWLS is boring! Give lawn bowls a go some time and see how much SKILL is required, which is the reason young people are turning to it in their thousands in other parts of the world. But of course to most Americans, “The World” is ONLY the United States of America anyway.

  • Rob

    J. A. Britton, You’ve got great ideas, but even at its best, those shows could not have shown on CN, just because they aren’t geared for the network’s typical audience. Cartoon Network’s shameful dropping of their keystone, if anything, is proof that they will risk anything to attract more viewers.
    In a perfect world, there is a network for whiny animation fans over drinking age (and I mean that in the best possible way, I’m included) and your shows would fit perfectly into that schedule, as would something like toonheads, but its simply not a big enough, and the wrong target, audience. I know this demographic stuff is very much executive-speak, but the network is a business and fitting your product to appeal to viewers is a necessary evil. I, among everyone else here, just wish they weren’t so quick to throw out the baby with the bathwater.

    What I would like to see is, along with Boomerang, a sister network in the same vein of the Nicktoon’s channel, focusing on contemporary animated series, and inheriting whatever remnants of animation the original CN can muster. It won’t be the perfect channel everyone here is hoping for, but it will be more fitting with Cartoon Network’s ideals before they when all Teen Nick on us. I mean, on kids.

  • Brice Marden

    Bohn has it right. READ BOHN.

  • amid

    Bohn: We do have expansion plans for Cartoon Brew TV, but don’t expect to see us taking on CN anytime soon. What you are suggesting requires money and lots of it. Filmmakers on BrewTV are paid for the films that we air, and thus we can only expand as we earn more money. We are even looking into ways of funding original productions, but obviously, creating animation requires even more money. I wish we had the funds. We would put them to good use.

  • Hulk

    “an institutionalized variation on Hulk’s idea. Maybe some smart entrepreneur can figure out how to make that happen PROFITABLY.”

    Oluseyi I see your point and that’s exactly what I was getting at. To clarify what I meant: I know it’s extremely tough to be an animation auteur. It’s probably the toughest kind of auteur there is to be. BUT I see them popping up more and more all the time- Nina Paley and Bohn are among the first- and the more there are, the more they will need a place to showcase their work. I do sincerely hope that someone comes a long and finds a way to make it profitable to be an animation auteur. Wouldn’t that be something?

  • How about starting by just posting and linking to more original animation posted on the internet.

  • Iritscen

    I find myself wondering, with this move to Internet-based TV, if the future isn’t going to be made up of two kinds of shows/channels: the ones paid for by ads, and free to watch — and the kind that require more money or are too niche to get by on ads alone, and will be funded with subscription fees. It’s already been noted that online streaming isn’t making the kind of money that TV is, so many shows will not be able to be produced with the budgets we are used to from television if they are Internet-only productions. At the same time, Internet-only is the way to provide niche programming where it doesn’t matter if there aren’t hundreds of thousands of viewers a day.

    The way it would work is that animation enthusiasts would pay $5/month to watch Cartoon Brew TV on the Internet, with those (hundreds of?) thousands of dollars a month funding new productions. Lovers of science fiction would subscribe to “Big Name Space-Faring Show” for $1/month (which could work out to another $500,000 an episode for a 1M-viewer series) to augment the budget so the producers could do more special effects and alien make-up. Et cetera. Essentially, true a la carte programming, on a channel-by-channel and show-by-show basis. Some channels could be part-free, part-paid, with the programs that are more costly to produce requiring a subscription. Just my two cents.

  • Unfortuately children today (especially girls) are growing up to fast and therefore wrongly percieve cartoons as babyish. Look up Marie Winn, she’s the author of Children without Childhood.

  • Andy

    Maybe they’ll start showing cartoons on the Golf channel.

    Golf is the most boring, elitist “sport” ever. I always hated it when Saturday morning cartoons got pre-empted for golf “championships.”

    John K. is right – these CN execs not only hate cartoons, they hate kids as well.

  • Floyd Pendershaft

    The funny thing: are kids complaining? If you’re a kid and posting here, let us know. But its my feeling that the adults are ones complaining the most. Its the adults who want their cartoons the most!

  • Oluseyi

    @Hulk: Yep, we’re on the same page there.

    @Iritscen: Exactly. A careful analysis of the costs for a niche video hosting site – with no embedding, so random blogs can’t leech your bandwidth – could arrive at surprisingly realistic requirements for profitability. Run it like a non-profit, so that the revenue targets are simply to pay for infrastructure, staffing and endowment of independent animation works. Tier access, so any content that can be cheaply licensed, any content that is already in the public domain, and any funded work that is older than X days/weeks/months can be viewed for free, albeit ad-supported, while premium subscribers get to see ad-free video.

    Would I pay $10/mo to have an a la carte, all-animation, completely on-demand solution accessible from anywhere? Yes. Yes, I would.

    It will come, and the demise of WB Kids, Cartoon Network and others will actually be the events that precipitate it.

  • Kids like cartoons, kids like live action. Kids like good entertainment. In the end, CN’s numbers will guide their future decisions. I’m sure if their (honestly, brilliant) cartoons made Miley Cyrus dollars, they wouldn’t explore these avenues.

    Meanwhile, watch Boomerang, keep watching Flapjack, keep watching Brave and the Bold, and keep an eye on the future. The Disney Channel hasn’t shown a good cartoon in ages, and that’s named after the medium’s greatest innovator.

    Tommorow, kids will be into kitchen sink realism. And then, like with comic books (Alan Moore to Grant Morrison), people will come back to toons. And toons will be a little different. And we’ll probably be all the better for it.

  • Mesterius

    Cartoon Network these days is a frightening and almost unbelievable example of executive clulessness. I live in Norway, with a somewhat different day-to-day CN programming, but the differences are sadly visible here too. It’s especially sad since the channel had good content for such a long time. Only four or five years ago, Cartoon Network had a wonderful mix of cartoons: “Dexter’s Laboratory”, “Powerpuff Girls” and “Samurai Jack”, among many others, were balanced with regular half- or full-hour slots of classic Hoolywood shorts like “Tom and Jerry” and ”Looney Tunes”, as well as classic H-B TV shows like “The Flinstones”, “Top Cat” and “Jetsons”. I’m not saying I loved everything on the channel, but it had such variety – cartoons for all tastes! Then, gradually, the focus seemed to get restrained to the newer cartoons, which started phacing out classics like the Looney Tunes. And now, of course, pathetic and unfitting live-action programs are ruining everything. Someone has apparently just decided that people don’t like cartoons as much as before. Nothing could be further from the truth. But the people have to be able to actually watch them – and the need for good cartoon channels won’t fade away. I still hope that this channel can be saved, though it would probably have to involve firing almost everyone in charge now. The sooner the better.

    Oh, and if Cartoon Network wants golf, they can

  • I’ve been observing both the online and real-life reaction to this. And it seems to be pretty unanimously negative. Its an incredible backlash.

    Like…I dont think I’ve seen a backlash this bad since….I cant even think of anything….the beetles ‘bigger than jesus’ quip?

    Has noone at Turner noticed the outpouring of rage and bile over this? With the ratings tanking due to it? Are there no stockholders? An upset board of directors? How has noone been fired due to this?

    Far lesser flubs have occurred in corporate media with resignations piling up mere moments after.

    But not here.


  • Fatty McHaterade

    in reading the announcement, it appears that CN’s Enterprise group is taking responsibility in guiding the marketing of PGA to kids and parents – i didn’t see anything about a live action golf show.

    that said, CN has a few animated action shows brewing in the pot since boys like action. it’s just the comedy side that is being vomited upon by RS’s sense of humor. the sad reality is that Cartoon Network is a mis-directed tugboat in a sea of banality.

    our only hope is that Boomerang becomes an ad-supported network and changes its name to Cartoon Network, shortly after CN changes its name to “Totally Real 4 Teenz.”

  • @AMID – in response to what I said earlier
    I am not talking about funding thousand or even million dollar projects – A small sack of chump change is a hell of a lot better than nothing at all – the other part is, I am certainly sure there are people out there that would like to at least have the chance of making a film that can be viewed on such a level regardless of the pay or funding. I mean if people are dumb enough to respond to Craigslist adds for chances at making it big in the industry – a few smart people would jump at the chance to have a short funded with a small sack of Brew chump change. You dont need a lot of funding to participate in making a really great film. Besides it should be about the love anyway.

  • Looney LOver

    I bet the channel will cease to exist in a year or 2.

    • axeman400

      fat chance. at least its not like a few years ago when i had to sit through boomerang this and boomerang that. thank god for code lyoko. then evolution came along and killed it.

  • Darth Blade

    Umm.. some sutpid person said…
    the shows like saved the bell and other teen shows
    did not lead to end of cartoons?
    Oh, yes it did! these stupid teen dramas
    was begining the end for cartoons.
    The 80’s had so much as well as the mid 90’s
    with Animanics, Tiny Toons, Pinky & the Brain etc.
    I knew by late 90’s early 2000’s the party was ending
    He-Man & the Masters Of Universe 2002
    was the last great cartoon to come out.
    All this abstract flash crap is not a cartoon,
    or art. it’s cheap programming
    Unless somebody starts a pay for new cartoon channel
    it’s all over

  • The Golf is a desperate attempt by a father to get his son to play with him by brainwashing him to think it’s cool.

  • Ilikecartoons

    I really, really, hate “CN Real”…..They call it Cartoon Network for a reason….the show cartoons..all the time. Not many other networks if any do that….by incorporating “Real” shows…they take away what was unique about the channel and are making it like every other network out there….Bad Form Cartoon Network. I hope this doesn’t last and they can get back to what the channel was supposed to be all about.

  • Well I give up. The best thing any of us can do is stop watching the channel at all period. Their ratings will go down and they will suffer. Go out an buy the cartoons you like and watch them on DVDs. But don’t watch cartoon network. Don’t even flip to the channel. Screw them. Fucking sellouts.

  • Rollo Tomasi

    I thought this was a joke – I went to see the latest Harry Potter and had to sit through 20 minutes (I timed it) worth of commercials. That was bad enough, but to then be subjected to a “CN Real” promo made me want to vomit. Cold day in hell I’ll let my little girl watch that garbage. I’m done with TV.

    MTV RIP (what’s that M stand for?)
    A&E RIP (that’s Arts & Entertainment, jerk-offs)
    VH-1 RIP (who remembers that VH=”video hits”)
    Discovery Channel RIP (hey, look it’s Shark Week again…)
    History Channel RIP (Nostradamus predicts again?)
    Sci Fi channel RIP (Wrestling isn’t Science Fiction, in case you didn’t know.)
    Bravo RIP (Bravo was dedicated to film, drama, and the fine arts. How exactly do the Skanks of Orange County qualify as fine art?)
    Cartoon Network RIP (Which part of CARTOON is not understood?)

  • Kino

    >Rollo Tomasi

    Lets not forget G4tv either. It went from excessively nerdy video game channel to Bro tv and endless reruns of Cops.

  • phil andy graves

    I sent a comment to the network, asking them to help me define exactly what a “cartoon” is. I labeled them as the experts, obviously. I must’ve always had the definition wrong.

    Even Merriam-Webster essentially defines it as something created, humorous, ludicrous, or any of the above animated. I guess they’ll need to add another subdefinition;

    Real Cartoon [n] – A deception technique that replaces creative work with alternatives. Typically used in marketing to cut costs or increase ad revenue. (editor: doesn’t work at all)

    as opposed to

    Live Action Cartoon [n] – An epoch in creative work. Where hand drawn cartoons are portrayed in a realistic manner. (editor: doesn’t usually work very well)

  • Tabbz

    Did Nickeloden not go down this EXACT same path? After they cancelled Invader Zim, one of my personal favorite cartoons of all time, they slowly began to fill the channel with only live action sitcoms. Now, if you turn on their channel, you very rarely find an actual cartoon on besides the occasional Spongebob.

    It’s funny, because I mentioned this to my brother the other day. Nickelodeon only has two speeds: programming for small children, and sexualized programming for ‘tweens’ or whatever age they are trying to target.

    With shows like Total Drama Island and 6teen appearing to be the only remaining cartoons, it looks like actual children don’t have much to watch. While they are decent shows, I know I as a 7-8 year old kid had no interest in reality TV shows or dating.

  • “I thought this was a joke – I went to see the latest Harry Potter and had to sit through 20 minutes (I timed it) worth of commercials. That was bad enough, but to then be subjected to a “CN Real” promo made me want to vomit. Cold day in hell I’ll let my little girl watch that garbage. I’m done with TV.

    MTV RIP (what’s that M stand for?)
    A&E RIP (that’s Arts & Entertainment, jerk-offs)
    VH-1 RIP (who remembers that VH=”video hits”)
    Discovery Channel RIP (hey, look it’s Shark Week again…)
    History Channel RIP (Nostradamus predicts again?)
    Sci Fi channel RIP (Wrestling isn’t Science Fiction, in case you didn’t know.)
    Bravo RIP (Bravo was dedicated to film, drama, and the fine arts. How exactly do the Skanks of Orange County qualify as fine art?)
    Cartoon Network RIP (Which part of CARTOON is not understood?)”

    This is exactly what happen here in our channels in Canada. Instead to you who encouraged new roots, we prefer to see old stuffs or remakes over and over again because it’s much paid than new originals contents. Here’s a few examples what i talking about:

    Showcase (A brillant channel in ’95 are now a rip-off to every channels from the Canwest properties with the same 3 American shows)
    TV Land Canada/Deja View (A very small selection of classic TV shows instead to investate in something refreshing. Even Teletoon Retro seems to be the best classic shows channel at this day.)
    CBC/Radio-Canada (Financed by OUR taxes, they prefer now to air American shows like Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune in CBC and in Radio-Canada series like Lost, Desperate Housewives, Ugly Betty and Grey’s Anatomy. I mean, what the hell they aired that in this channels?)
    Canal D (Before, it was a channel that everyone watched with a varied programming. Now it’s reduced by cars accidents reconstitutions, murders and all of this junks. It should be called Canal Policier because we discover nothing except American shows with bad traductions.)
    MusiquePlus/Musimax (They don’t really playing music anymore in profit of reality shows and stars shows. Pathetic!)
    Teletoon (Who prefer to encouraged Americans, yet their own shows is stink)

    And many others to come in our beautiful country diriged by a narcissic prime minister who just care to his friends from Alberta! Sheesh!

  • eric

    the reason why cn is doing terribly is because they got ride of great cartoons like .hack, or reboot now those shows and many others got cn famous not reality animations but fantasy, and adventure like rave master, and gundam.

  • Ash seen it heard it tired of it

    Golf…what’s next;football? I’m an average sixteen year old African-American. I dislike MTV’s meandering from their original concept(music) and Cartoon Network desperateness of views. When I was a kid, there was a lot of anime on. Sure, some of it was kinda eehh for my age, but hey. They got more ratings back then, than now. I just hope they can get themselves together before they fall apart completely. Exe’s now NOTHING about what kids want. They just are trying to feed their need for money and thought of a good way to make money. Kicking out all cartoonist and adding in more live action shows isn’t cartoon network’s way. Or shall I saw ‘the’ network now. I have no little sisters or brothers but, I have many little cousins. I see them watching Disney and Nick more than Cartoon network these days. Sometimes I may ask why, and they’d reply, “Eh. Boring,I don’t like that kind of stuff.” And, to add golf would just produce more of those replies. I have a weird feeling(though most likely not going to happen anytime soon) Adult Swim will buy CN out.

  • Mo

    to be honest ibelieve that the new cartoon network is a tragedy what they should do is start over…kids are not the only ones watching the channel…they need to structure it in a manner that works for everyone…perhaps the morning time give all those new kid shows a go (sidekick, scooby doo, bakugan, beyblades…etc) untill afternoon keep the classics like (looney tunes and tom and jerry) then after bring back toonami…im sure everyone loved toonami..bring toonami for us teens we dont want to watch those kids shows (good shows like young justice, thunder cats,star wars,generator rex….etc) also get rid of dude what would happen and destroy build destroy….cartoon network obviously says cartoons,which they are not then later around 4 and 5 good shows like gumball adventure time regular show. Etc

  • Ivan

    To this day I still enjoy Cartoon Network old and new.
    I think the only thing that died are the old fans,
    not everyone shares the same interests. If you don’t like don’t watch, change the channel or do something else.
    I believe Cartoon Network will continue to go on, fans come and go, and people grow up.

    • axeman400

      your philosophy is flawed. they have one foot in the grave and one on soap. put 2 and 2 together.


    i have liked cartoon network until 2008 when they
    fired toonami and it put on crappy shows and now they are
    allowing cursing and sexual content and so on i just hate
    cartoon network because of that cn should be banned until
    they bring back toonami and innapropiate stuff then every
    one will be happy and also cartoon network is actually
    wants you to watch the stupid shows that is because it is dumb *_* died because he watched the stupid cartoon network