The World According to Nick
My take on Software, Technology, Politics, and anything else I feel like talking about.
Friday, May 28, 2004

The Justice League vs. The Super Friends 

Tech Central Station - Bad Cartoons Make Bad Citizens

Bad cartoons tend to make bad citizens. And my generation suffered from the worst cartoons of all. Pity the poor male children of Generation X: there we sat, on Saturday mornings in the '70s and early '80s, clutching our bowls of Count Chocula and enduring the soul-sucking monotony of ugly Filmation cartoons populated by heroes who fought without actually fighting. You could watch cartoons for hours and never see a superhero actually sock a supervillain in the gut, or a commando pump hot lead into a live non-robot terrorist, or a ranger thrust a pointy-sharp arrow into some dragon's malevolent guts. Preachy mini-sermons abounded, though; the Super Friends couldn't lay a gloved fist on Lex Luthor, but they could sure manhandle those sugary in-between-meals snacks. ("Super Friends," they called them, instead of the Justice League. The difference tells you everything you need to know about the seventies.)

For the record I grew up on a steadfast diet of re-run Warner Brother cartoons full of avils crushing people, people walking off of cliffs and not falling right away (did you know that's not how it really works?), and ACME products that never seemed to work as advertised (I tried calling the Better Business Bureau on that one, but they just laughed). I couldn't stand the Super Friends... I thought they were dumb. I guess I was a pretty smart kid.

I wonder if the same people who came up with the Super Friends were later involved in the A-Team? Think about it... they all had machine guns, but never ever seemed to actually hit anyone with them. But boy could they shoot out a tire and flip a car every single episode. Of course the people in the car always walked away from it unscathed. Hmmmmm.

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Name: Nick
Home: Wauwatosa, WI, United States

I'm a Software Consultant in the Milwaukee area. Among various geeky pursuits, I'm also an amateur triathlete, and enjoy rock climbing. I also like to think I'm a political pundit.


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