How old is “too old” for cartoons?

By Daniel Garcia, Entertainment EditorAdventure Time

A curious question I often have seen asked, and always find strange, is why adults (like myself) chose to watch children’s cartoons for entertainment, especially when there are apparently “adult” animated shows aimed at my age range? As someone who freely admits to watching a variety of cartoons of today, examples being Adventure Time, Gravity Falls, Star Vs. The Forces of Evil and Friendship is Magic, I can offer my perspective on why I still find a lot of enjoyment in animated media.

I find it odd how I sometimes get raised eyebrows or surprised looks when I say how I in fact tend to enjoy cartoons that are evidently “for kids” compared to animated shows aimed at adults, or even live action adult shows. To be honest in fact I have found little interest or enjoyment in live action shows I often hear discussed (Game of Thrones, Walking Dead, etc) yet I am eagerly awaiting the next season of Star Vs. and would happily prefer to watch animated shows from my childhood.

Why is this? There a handful of reason. From a purely biased standpoint, I just tend to prefer animation over live action shows. I feel the medium of animation offers unmatched creativity compared to live action, and as odd as it sounds, animated shows apparently aimed at children use the medium far more creatively than an even the handful of animated shows aimed at adults, with a few exceptions (Rick and Morty and South Park being examples of difference).

As an illustration of this fact, take a recent apparently “adult” animated show on Fox, Bordertown. The premise is incredibly recycled, following yet another “American nuclear family” in day to day life experiences no different than the usual shtick one would see in a mediocre adult sitcom, with apparently “adult humor” consisting of stereotypes, crude sex humor and tired hijinks.

Contrast with a show from Disney I have already mentioned, Star Vs Evil, which follows a magical character from an alternate dimension entering the world we know, and fighting invading monsters, with great animation, likable characters and genuinely funny and clever writing to entertain and captivate it’s audience.

To be honest, with a few exceptions, I really feel a lot of today’s cartoons aimed at children have more effort, passion and talent put into them than most of the animation aimed at adults. Perhaps this is because animation in the United States has, for the most part, been shoehorned into the “just for kids” category, which I find a shame.