Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Nostalgia Failure

     I have enjoyed over the last few years introducing my sons to the classic cartoons of my childhood. Wonderful Saturday Morning fare like Scooby-Doo, Johnny Quest, the Pink Panther, Bugs Bunny and the Laff-a-Lympics have provided plenty of terrific Saturday mornings. So I wondered whether I should try introducing them to another cartoon I watched with great devotion - G.I. Joe. This mid-80's afternoon cartoon probably had as much to do as anything with my decision to join the Army. I bought the 'action figures' and read the comic books. Hopefully this establishes that I liked the cartoon as a kid. So I recently had the opportunity to watch the mini series "The Revenge of Cobra" which served as one of the 'pilots' for the regular afternoon series.

[SPOILER WARNING]

     It was awful. Completely, cringingly awful. Oh, the animation was decent enough for a cartoon of the time, but in every other respect it was just plain bad. The plot of the mini-series was absurd, with improbabilities of all kinds and plot holes that a tank could drive through. The characters were either flat & interchangeable or ridiculously over-the-top. The leadership of Cobra was particularly susceptible to fits of insane laughter, which made them look dumb rather than threatening.  The laser bolts flew fast and furious, except that even Star Wars Stormtroopers could shoot with better accuracy. Characters on both sides shouted their sides' catch-phrases "Yo Joe" and "Co-braaaaaa" with disturbing frequency. The humor wasn't funny either. 

     Now look, I didn't expect that it was going to be classic theater or anything. But it just wasn't any fun anymore. All those other cartoons I mentioned at the top, they're still fun. They still make me laugh. I still root for the good guys. But GI Joe? It just doesn't hold up. Disappointing but true. At least I still have the comic books. 

1 comment:

thenormanomicon said...

WOW, so sorry to hear about the dashed childhood memories. My son loves G.I. Joe (the originals) and yeah, it bothers me that it's still 'campy', and I cringe at most of it, he still likes it. He's also into Scooby-Doo (one of his FAVORITES), Pink Panther, etc.

It seems as though several childhood or younger days things are disappointing now. I just got the new Duke Nukem game and am SORELY disappointed in it. I'll be posting about it in the next day or two that's how bad I was disappointed.

Anyhow, doing a good job with your blog so far, keep up the good work.