Inside My Head

the literary rantings of Angie Frissore

In Defense of Cartoon Violence

“Ahh, you are officially my hero,” I proclaimed, gently taking the mug of coffee from Brian’s hands.  I was having serious issues keeping my eyes open.

“Oh, it’s only now official?”

“Yeah,” I smirked, cradling my new cup of happiness, “before now it was just our little secret. Now I’m not ashamed to admit it.”

Brian sat back down on the couch next to Jeff, who was entranced by Brian’s subscription to a 24-hour classic cartoon network.  The three of us sat, happily buzzed, transfixed on a timeless Tom & Jerry episode featuring a drunken Tom being forced to stay awake after an all-nighter.

“I wish someone would put Beavis and Butthead back on,” Brian muttered.

“It’s already on,” I said, quietly.  “MTV2 runs it sometimes.”

“But it’s not the good ones,” Jeff interjected.  “All they play now are the lame ones where Beavis can’t say ‘fire’ anymore.”

“Didn’t some idiot kid burn his trailer down or something and the show got blamed?” I asked.

“The answer’s in the question,” Brian stated.  “Idiot, trailer…like it was going to take a television show to push that kid over the edge.  It’s bullshit.”

As Jeff and Brian commiserated on the death of good cartoons, I remained fixated on the television, and more importantly, fixated on how cartoons used to be.  In the ninety seconds it took my own Beavis and Butthead to realize they were arguing the same point, I had counted five acts of gratuitous violence on Tom & Jerry.

“He’s got a point,” I said.  “I mean, think about it…in this cartoon alone you have a boozehound housecat, a mouse setting off explosives, and the drugging of the household human.”

“Yeah,” Jeff shouted, suddenly getting some life back in him.  “Then there was the time Tom chased Jerry around the house with a sawed-off shotgun.”

“Or the time Tom drugged the dog and Jerry resorted to putting a bomb under him to wake him up.”

“Jerry threw an iron at Tom’s head and was always putting mouse traps in his face,” Brian added.

“Call me crazy,” I argued, “but none of us grew up thinking that was normal, right?  I mean, aside from Jeff.”

“I only threw the iron once.”

“And that didn’t even have anything to do with Tom & Jerry,” Brian said.

“Right, so….” I started.  Brian let out an exasperated sigh.

“Here we go, Abby’s lesson on life.”

“Shut it.  Anyway, our parents raised us, not televisions.  Sure, we watched a shitload of it, but we had the benefit of having parents who taught us the subtle differences between reality and animation.”

“I distinctly remember my mother telling me that unlike Tom, if I cut the cat’s tail off with an ax, our cat couldn’t simply tape it back on and get on with its day,” recalled Jeff.

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December 4, 2008 - Posted by | No Messages - Excerpts from the Draft | , ,

3 Comments »

  1. That’s right. I watched plenty of wrestling and never piledrove my sister.

    Comment by Mike | December 13, 2008 | Reply

  2. Wrestling was NOT a cartoon!

    Comment by Angela Frissore | December 13, 2008 | Reply

  3. Hulk Hogan’s Rock n Wrestling was.

    Comment by Mike | December 13, 2008 | Reply


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