That’s not all folks: why is there so much animated TV for adults?
Adult humour in cartoons was once virtually unheard of – now, animated TV is saturated with grown-up jokes
and Family Guy made animation aimed at adults a familiar TV niche. The last decade has seen an explosion of new series, some with fresh approaches to the genre, some not so much. Have we reached market saturation?Perhaps streaming is to blame. Thirsty services have licensed existing titles to beef up content libraries while also ordering new shows to bolster their brand. In the Netflix era, this means successes might hit hard and fast (such as the bittersweet celebrity tailspin BoJack Horseman) but failures can be far more visible (fratty basketball comedy Hoops, cancelled after one season).
Late-arriving streamers such as Apple TV+ and HBO Max have followed Netflix’s trigger-happy lead; wacky commissions, such as a mature origin story for Scooby-Doo’s Velma, are announced seemingly every week. Even Covid hasn’t slowed things down, since animation production pipelines are easier to pandemic-proof and remain substantially cheaper than live-action filming.
The result is an abundance of adult animation that can feel overwhelming. In such a fractured media landscape, it can be hard to tell your Duncanville (a coming-of-age story co-created by Amy Poehler) from your Central Park (a star-studded NYC-set musical on Apple TV+). headtopics.com
To stand out in such a packed field, creators are taking big swings and using the familiarity and flexibility of animation to tackle previously taboo subjects. BoJack is the poster horse for this new wave, deftly exploring depression, addiction and even dementia. Big Mouth, another Netflix standout, takes an unfiltered look at adolescence – including menstruation, masturbation and other puberty minefields – in ways that a live-action show would never dare.
In content-hungry 2021, streamers seem prepared to sign off on almost anything – all in the name of creating soul-nourishing art, of course, but also perhaps spurred by the unpredicted breakout of Adult Swim’s sci-fi hit Rick and Morty, an odd-couple comedy of blowtorch existentialism that has inspired a rabid worldwide fanbase since debuting in 2013.
Things are unlikely to decelerate any time soon. Netflix and CBS have established in-house animation studios to reduce outsourcing costs while ramping up production. Disney, the biggest media beast of all, recently launched a new adult animation division to consolidate their many recent acquisitions and launch “dozens” of additional projects. But don’t have a cow, man: we’ll just have to exercise some critical judgment to find the good stuff.Read more: The Guardian »
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Why? Because it's cheap? What’s the problem with animation for adults? I loved cartoons as a kid & I still love em now. U don’t grow up & have ur sense of humour & fun removed (well most of us don’t). Just go with it & enjoy. Never seen Fritz the Cat, eh? 🙄 Because we like it - and in many cases more than the formulaic dross served up on domestic TV stations.
Adult humor unheard of? Guess you’ve never looked into anime which has existed for decades What does it matter? Cheaper than making a 'real' sitcom, and obvs less story limitations. Cartoon humans can also probably get away with saying more 'non pc' things than a 'real' human can The cartoons shown in movie theatres from the 20s to the 50s were mostly geared to adults.
Why isn’t there a Guardian for adults? ANIMATION IS NOT FOR KIDS, IDIOT. American breakfast cereals and toy companies to sell their crap to American kids in the 50s and 60s started this whole “cartoons for kids Saturday morning” bullshit that went full bloom by the 1960s. Grow up.
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Because there is a demand for it ? Cannabis I never watch them. Kinda narrow minded scope though.... anime has been around for decades - many of which definitely aren't made for children. because its cheap? cartoons are good? lol Where are there so many paintings: shouldn't they all be photographs? Turning the Adults into Children, same as Corporate Capitalist Consumerism. It has been around forever, somebody just put it on TV.
Because why not? A good story is a good story and entertainment is entertainment. I'd go so far as to say that most adult cartoons operate on a wildly higher intellectual note than, say, 95% of all available reality shows.
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this is terrible news Is it because adults like animated TV? I AM JESUS CHRIST! 'YOU WILL LOVE YOUR NEXT LIKE YOU', I SAID THAT I WOULD RETURN TO CONCERT YOUR SOULS. YOU USE MY NAME TO STEAL. I punish. I WANT POVERTY, HUNGER AND VIOLENCE TO END IN THE WORLD. BEGINNING OF AFRICA, ASIA, CENTRAL AMERICA AND MIDDLE EAST. I AM THE LAST!
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