Is it really any wonder that kids these days are, let's face it, thick as shit? Me and the boyfriend were watching the animated series of Batman the other day from 1992, so I was 2 when they came out, but they would've been played throughout my childhood really. Bit of backs story; Poison Ivy was gathering up people who had hurt the environment and/or nature in some way to her private Spa, where she was slowly drugging the visitors and eventually sprayed them with some kind of chemical that coated them in bark and eventually, over a period of time, turned them into trees themselves, essentially giving back to the environment. Now, Batman couldn't just wander in and apprehend Ms. Ivy because he'd be turned into a tree. So we, the viewers, got to see Batman literally explain how he was going to take some of the toxin she was using and merge it with his own blood so that he could create a liquid/spray that was immune to her toxin gas. He coated his cape in the immunisation stuff and, when faced with Ivy's toxin, it didn't affect him and he beat her at her own game.
This is the kind of things that kids were watching in 1992 and onward a couple of years, and previous to that, cartoons were even MORE engaging and smart. So we, as kids, are sitting there smack bang in front of the TV, engrossed by this cartoon, and inadvertently learning about both chemistry and biology because that really IS how immunisation works; when you get an immunisation injection, a small part of the virus or infection is injected into you so that your body learns how to fight it.
Another quick example, still on Batman; Batman got smacked on the head and was put into a coma. But we didn't know he was in a coma, as far as we were concerned, everything we were watching was real. Suddenly, he was Bruce Wayne, but he wasn't Batman, someone else was. He went about his business, done normal things, but he was unsettled by the fact that his parents were still alive, and, of course, he wasn't Batman any more. Obviously a bit confusing for someone who knows he is Batman... But then he opens up a paper, and all the words are jumbled and he can't read. Now, I may get my left and right sides wrong here, so correct me if I'm wrong, but, because he can't read the paper, Bruce Wayne realises that he is in a dream, because reading is a right brain function and dreaming is a left-side function (correct me if I'm wrong, I may have got them muddled up... I'm getting old, I have an excuse). Bruce Wayne then enters a battle on a roof top, where he realises that, if you're dreaming, and you're falling, you'll wake up before you hit the
ground. So he throws himself off the roof, and then he wakes up to reality, and it was all a big facade put on by the Mad Hatter.
The point I'm trying to prove is that, this is all quite in-depth stuff, and you have to really know your stuff to understand what's going on, and you know what? As a kid, I understood this stuff. I LOVED that realisation at the end of an episode of something like TMNT or Power Rangers or something like that when you realise what's actually happened and what's going on.
Cartoons these days, unless you're lucky to get a quick re-run of Tom & Jerry on Cartoon Network, are SO dumbed down that it's no wonder kids aren't learning anything and are, as previously said, thick as shit. The one program on CITV that we were particularly comparing things to is a kids program called "Half Naked Animals". It's basically animals in pants running around being stupid. How can you justify sitting your kids in front of that? What are they going to learn? That Porky the Pig is supposed to wear pants?
Apparently these days kids are put under "so much pressure to excel" in school that we can't have cartoons that are too in-depth because it doesn't give kids any time to relax. My arsehole. Is it any wonder that poets and authors are a dying breed? It's cuz the next generation and generations coming up after that have absolutely zilch imagination because the only thing they've been exposed to is animals in pants.
And before anyone tells me "Oh but Batman is meant more for adults than kids" - Don't even go there. The movies, maybe so, but the animated cartoon series? No. That's for kids. Directors and producers themselves have even said that they introduced Robin so that kids would be able to see themselves in him and with that they can pretend that they're there, walking alongside Batman, BEING Robin.
What I'm trying to say is, in cartoons these days, there is absolutely no degree of imagination needed whatsoever. No difficulty in it, no education, nothing. It's just sheer retarded stupidity made purely to reign in the viewers because they know that parents will happily plonk their children down in front of half naked animals because it's "cute" and "fun" and "not violent" and "easy".
Which leads me on to my next annoyance. Me and Doug discuss this at length quite often, and I always mean to bring my opinion to the world, but I haven't yet, so I'm going to now.
Parents will happily get their pen and paper out and write a stinking letter to Ofcom if they see a cartoon that has someone throwing a few punches in it, or an advert with a cow that goes "mmmmm" a little too erotically for their children's ears. Parents will happily sign a petition to get a cartoon or TV programme off the air if there's criminals or violence or if it's "too hard" for children to understand.
Parents will QUITE HAPPILY remove their child from the TV if there's criminal activity going on in a cartoon or TV program, take them to a different room, plonk them in front of the XBox, hand them the controller and stick in Call Of Duty for them. Is anyone seeing the backwards logic here? Firstly, the only reason that kid has Call Of Duty is cuz he whinged for it because all his friends have it and, well, where's the harm in giving him a game? It's just a game, right? A game where you're shooting actual people in REAL locations, not made up locations, REAL one that ACTUALLY exist, and the whole point is the pretty much destroy an entire race of people because they've threatened your country.
THAT'S a FINE lesson to instil into your child, isn't it? Don't become a vigilante cuz that's bad and wrong but it's okay to go get an army-issue machine gun and fire at will at innocent civilians because their political leader made a boo-boo and called your country stupid.
But maybe you're smart enough to not hand your 6 year old child an Xbox with Live on it and an 18-rated game. Good. So what shall we do with the kids instead? Oh, I know, let's put MTV on and let them dance around and sing for a bit because that's good for them, it's exercise. Awesome.
So we stick on MTV and who're we faced with? Rhianna! Oh that's good, she's good for my little girl, she goes around telling girls not to starve themselves, she's been the victim of domestic abuse and she's pulled through it, she takes care of herself, she's a role model for little kids, right? Great, so you wont let your kid watch Batman or other cartoons that require some degree of thought and brain power, but now you've got your children dancing around your living room singing at the top of their voices the following excerpts;
"Come On Rude Boy, Boy
Can You Get It Up
Come Here Rude Boy, Boy
Is You Big Enough
Take It, Take It
Take It, Take It
Love Me, Love Me"
"I Like The Way You Touch Me ThereI Like The Way You Pull My Hair
Babe, If I Don't Feel It I Ain't Faking
Do you know how many kids I've heard singing that? How many little girls wander round Tesco and up and down the street singing "Rude Boy" at anything that moves? Yet how many times have you seen in the paper "Parents complain about Rhianna's lyrics"? How many times do you see the censorships saying "Well yes this movie is a 15 because there's a battle scene in it" and how many times have you heard them say "Sorry Rhianna, this song can't be entered into the charts because it's not suitable"? ... Yeah, exactly.
We live in a stupid world full of stupid people with stupid ideologies and stupid opinions. And yeah, sure, you might think that my opinion is stupid. Fact is, I know it isn't.
To sum it up; cartoons and things that kids watch on a regular basis are so dumbed down these days it's not difficult to see why the next generation are, for the most part, one step away from being deemed officially mentally handicapped. But that's good, because we obviously don't want our children to have to think about things or to see violence on the TV, but it's okay because we'll either smack 'em in front of the Xbox to play something like Call Of Duty or Halo or we'll plank 'em in front of MTV so they can sing about how desperate they are to have sex. Fantastic.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not putting all the eggs into one basket, there are some parents, although few and far between, who have the smarts to encourage their children to think about things and to not buy them games purely because they want them and to try and discourage them from listening to the crap on the radio (Let's face it, it's really difficult to completely avoid music in the charts). Whenever I'm in Tesco and I hear a parent say "No, you're not getting that, because it's an 18, and I don't care if Jimmy has it, you're not Jimmy, now put it back", my heart genuinely skips a beat and I feel a flicker of hope for the world.
But for the most part, it's really no wonder why this planet and her inhabitants are declining so rapidly. Nobody encourages thinking or creating any more, it's all about technology and what pals have and what shuts the kids up the best without making them think too hard because that's "stressful".
So, tell me what you think.