Sunday night cartoons
There’s something about Sunday night that makes me want to watch animation. I don’t really know what it is. Escapism, brain candy. I must not be the only adult who feels this way. For some reason, since cartoons became mainstream adult fare, it seems like Sunday night was the only place it could acceptably call home.
It started with the Simpsons, then branched into King of the Hill, Futurama. Then of course there was MTV’s Liquid Television that spawned Beavis and Butthead. Late night visions of Aeon Flux and The Maxx. At least 10 of Family Guy’s hundreds of jokes per episode are worth a serious laugh. And I guess Adult Swim really took the Sunday night theme home. Aqua Teen Hunger Force, The Oblongs, Home Movies, Sealab 2021. And then there were a bunch that just couldn’t keep their heads above water, through no fault of their own. I always thought The Critic was underrated: there was always something about the close credits where the critic cuddles up in bed that was comforting. I love Mission Hill too, with its Cake theme music and slacker lifestyle.
One theory I could think of is that as Saturday morning cartoon watchers aged, Sunday night took over as the time of lounge. Sunday night is couch time, like it is for little kids when they wake up for school, only to find out it’s Saturday and my god there is no school, and now there are five hours ahead that I have nothing to do but watch Monchichi and Smurfs and other small animal characters with merchandise tie-ins.
Tonight I’m watching “Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker,” starring voice talent such as Mark Hammill, Dean Stockwell Stockard Channing and Henry Rollins.