Your Evening Looney Tunes Fix

Okay, kids, just for kicks, we're going to shake things up. Instead of classic Looney Tunes cartoons, here's a classic from your favorite and mine - Animaniacs! Yaayy! This is the Barney parody, a character who's just a perfect target for cartoon violence.

This is the way American cartoons should be: anti-authoritarian, anti-establishment, no preachy moral lessons, no nutritional value, and lots of gratuitous violence. Now these are role models, kids.


Malik Ming said...

As self-aware Americans, I suppose we're the only ones who can truly satirize the idiocy of our culture.

In regard to the Catholic Church and satire, Roger Ebert said something similar:

Maybe you have to take organized religion seriously in order to make jokes about it. If you can only see it as a bunch of guys running around wearing funny outfits and reciting mumbo-jumbo, then it loses its mystery, and that makes it useless as a target for satire.

Take the Catholic church, for example. Like a lot of people who were raised within its rituals and traditions, I can easily find humor in it. I laughed at "Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?" and "Sister Mary Ignatius Explains it All for You," and some of my favorite films are the dark comedies of Luis Bunuel, that anarchistic old anti-clericist. I also like the way Woody Allen applies comic logic to vast theological questions. The success of such works - so different in any other way - is that they spring from the deep impulses of people to whom Catholicism does have significance.
I think the same applies here, although it's pretty easy to make fun of American culture. The American Dream has been satirized before and since Charlie Chaplin's era. Because we have to deal with it, we're the most vicious with our humor. I think our problem as a whole is that we're a country that either takes itself super-seriously, and then, *snap* not at all. That may explain the immense popularity of shows like The Simpsons and South Park, since the general audience doesn't realize (or acknowledge) that the joke's on them. Then again, why were so many people upset about WALL-E's ripping on consumer culture? We know we're wrong, but we won't admit it.

And that's what your definition of American animation got me thinking about. Too many subsequent cartoon shows after Spielberg's brief stab at the format took away the coarseness, but not the satire. And it goes on, and on, and on...

Anyway, great short. Anything that rips on the inanity of Barney is funny by default.

Anonymous said...

Animaniacs are so dull. It's like they make the same tired jokes over and over and over again only in different situations. Like that "hello nurse" gag was done so many times each episode it makes me want to vomit. Making fun of barney was so cliche. It's like making a joke out of a joke. What's the point of making fun of something that's already stupid? For one thing, it's too easy and another, it'll never be as funny as the original joke. I've never liked the type of arrogant comedy that looney characters had. Somebody needs to smack those spoiled animaniacs.

More Ghibli Blog Posts To Discover