I’m a product of the Saturday Morning Generation

Warning: Danger ahead Photo credit: Tvropes.org

I don’t recall having a terrible childhood. I thought everything was pretty good at the time. Apparently, though, I should be the victim of terrible psychosis with rage issues and be morbidly obese.

My parents allowed me to watch what I called at the time “cartoons,” but what are now called “displayed violence aimed at children.” Every Saturday, I ate my high-fructose corn syrup infused cereal (part of a complete balanced breakfast, as long as you plan on getting your nutrients somewhere else) and plopped myself in front of the television. There, I witnessed animal after animal maimed by bombs, sledge hammers, anvils, and all assortments of falling objects. They were often the objects themselves, hurtling off of the edge of a cliff while the creature they chased somehow managed to escape a fall to their death.

If you’ve seen cartoons now, there are no bombs in sight. No weaponry. No logic defying escapes from death. Just boring characters saying boring things while they participate in boring events.

Yawn.

The reason for this is, of course, due to the likelihood of the violence seen on television being repeated by children. The chances are greatly increased that your kid will sneak into your dynamite and anvil stash and try to destroy his friends if they watch Looney Tunes. If they watch the new cartoons, they’ll probably just gouge out their eyes out of boredom, which is completely victimless.

Black and white Looney Tunes opening title fro…

I have experienced this myself. At the time, it just seemed like innocent fun, but looking back I realize that I was bordering on becoming a public menace.

One Saturday, I experienced my usual cartoon and sugar induced buzz. While I focused on the blurry images on the screen (yes kids, this was BEFORE HD TV), I witnessed one of the greatest physics examples of my young life. A man was swiftly running, his arms and legs pumping while the soundtrack flitted and fluttered in the background. All of a sudden, his running was met with an unexpected impedance.

He hit a banana peel.

As soon as the man hit the ground, it was as if the thud of the body to ground contact shook an idea loose in my head.

I had to know if this would work.

I immediately went to work, a preteen version of Mythbusters. My lab would be my kitchen floor, much to the chagrin of my parents.

I carefully peeled a banana, making sure to leave the peel intact, before placing it, ever so gently, on the floor.

Since I had no siblings on which to test my theories, I quickly came to the realization that I had to be both scientist and guinea pig.

As it turns out, you don’t really fall down like in cartoons. You really just squish banana peel all over the kitchen floor. I’m not sure, but I think my mom would have dropped an anvil on my head that day. Fortunately, we lived in an anvil free household.

So I guess it might be a good thing that cartoons border on torture nowadays. Now all children have to reenact is whatever it is that’s entertaining about modern cartoons.

It, at least, keeps the kitchen floor a little bit cleaner.

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7 thoughts on “I’m a product of the Saturday Morning Generation

  1. Funny that you write this. I just watched The Muppet Movie Saturday night and was going to post about it and how childrens entertainment has been sabotaged! This was recently posted on my Facebook wall, figured you may get it a kick out of it like me:

    “Me behave? Seriously? As a child I saw Tarzan almost naked, Cinderella arrived home after midnight, Pinnochio told lies, Aladdin was a thief, Batman drove over 200 miles an hour, Snow White lived in a house with 7 men, Popeye smoked a pipe and had tatoos, Pac Man ran around to digital music while eating pills that enhanced his performance, and Shaggy and Scooby were mystery solving hippies that always had the munchies. The fault is not mine! If you had this childhood and loved it repost!”

    1. OMG I LOVE that. I think I’m stealing it and putting it on my FB page. Thanks so much for sharing.

      Funny thing is, even though all of the above is true, I can’t help but think television growing up was a bit more enriching that it is now.

      1. Welcome! I agree with you – sitcoms and cartoons from our kid generation had much more value than they do today. Oh and I promised myself I would never sound like my parents lol!

  2. I like your blog! I loved Saturday morning cartoons. I can’t imagine my parents having complained about cartoon violence. Ah, times have changed.

    Any time I see someone holding a banana peel, I think of Billy Madison and quote “O’Doyle rules!” in my head.

    1. It’s odd to me that the very people who are complaining about cartoon violence are the ones who grew up watching them. I wonder what the current generations of youngsters will have to protest when they are grown!

      Haha, I can’t think of Billy Madison without singing “Back to school, back to school, to prove to dad that I’m not a fool”

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