Tuesday, February 15, 2011

I Hope Jane Fonda Gave You Herpes

IWith all the candy-ass, imitation anime crap that passes for Saturday morning cartoons these days -- not that they even air on Saturday mornings anymore -- I was especially butthurt today to learn the fate of one of my favorite cartoons growing up. That would be SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron, and if that name doesn't ring any bells, I pity your poor, deprived childhood.

I can still hear the awesomely bend-y guitar notes.
SWAT Kats was the most badass, take no prisoners, non-stop gratification cartoon in the history of action figure product placement. All these Kool Kats did was find excuses to go blow shit up. They flew around in a sick, gun-covered jet that made the Batplane look like a Daewoo Lanos. Their hood, MegaKat City, was a place so hard, it made South Central look like a fucking daycare center. Not a day went by without some extraterrestrial monster the size of a city block dropping in and tearing shit up. The Vor y Zakone wouldn't last thirty seconds in this place. This show was so hardcore, it made me want to kick my parents in the face. Between its non-stop sensory assault and the near-toxic levels of sugar I was slamming into my  bloodstream, I wouldn't calm down until eight or nine o'clock at night. And it wasn't like those other cartoons from the early 90's that would break from the action for public service announcements or quasi-Christian life lessons -- the rainforests could burn down to ashes as far as the SWAT Kats were concerned, and the only golden rule was don't turn your back on the street.

You fuckin with the wrong crew.
For some bizarre reason though, SWAT Kats never seemed to catch on. It disappeared abruptly and unceremoniously, and to this day, I've only met a few people who have ever even heard of it. I wondered if the show was actually just a big pile of crap, and I had been too young and stupid to know it. But then, thanks to the glory of wikipedia, I was finally able to go back and learn the truth. When SWAT Kats debuted in 1994 (yeah, I'm old, go fuck yourself) it was the highest rated cartoon in America. So what the fuck? Why did it go off the air? Did the creators get tired of making money?

Enter Ted Turner. As we all know, this evil bastard has enough money to mortgage the souls of all the children in Africa. He doesn't give a fuck about the profits of some stupid cartoon that brought kids like me unhealthy amounts of joy. No, he thought SWAT Kats was too violent, too amoral to be shown on his network, and he decided he was going to make an example out of it. He canceled the show, overruling its creators, and never made a public statement about it or anything. SWAT Kats was allowed to evaporate into the ether like a fever-dream, and there it stayed, lodged in my subconscious until wikipedia revealed the truth.

This is his "I Just Killed Your Childhood" face
The euthanization of SWAT Kats seems especially unjust and ironic because these days, when I sit down in front of the tube with a big bowl of Lucky Charms on Saturday morning, all I find on Turner Network Television (or any other channel for that matter) are marathons of hideously gruesome forensic detective shows. Are you really telling me, Ted Turner, that it's less damaging for kids to watch Emily Deschanel dig around in some poor bastard's decomposing eye sockets than it is to watch a Kouple Kartoon Kats blow up some alien monsters? Really?

FUCK YOU, TED TURNER. FUCK YOU RIGHT IN YOUR LIVER-SPOTTED FACE.

31 comments:

  1. Swat Kats is and will forever be MY LIFE. I got to meet the producers and lead designers for the cartoon and I hang with them every May and June at Anime Central and JAFAX. I am planning on doing a Felina Feral cosplay and in the future Turmoil.

    Swat Kats does make appearances on Boomerang (AKA all the shit worth watching the Cartoon Network abandoned.) I am just glad I can sit down and watch my recorded episodes. At least they aren't rebooting it like Thundercats... I just wish the old team would come back and continue the story... I really wanted to see the Episode where Turmoil and T-Bone get back together.

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  2. Also, I was going to vent and vent about the injustice of this, but for the sake of everyone's sanity, I deleted A LOT of my post.

    I love Swat Kats and it had a major impact on what I wanted to do career wise as a kid. I wanted to work for the show, but oh well... ;_;

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  3. I've never watched Swat Kats. If it was in 1994 then it was probably around the time when gangsta rap and the la riots happened. Just guessing.

    I wish I watched Swat kats, but TMNT will always be my favorite cartoon from back in the days.

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  4. ive never heard of swat kats but now i feel the need to watch it

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  5. Ted Turner creeps me out a little. :)

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  6. I need to watch this!
    Following ;)

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  7. @ Jactating That is awesome. I'm sure the creators love to know that their work was appreciated. Television can be a cruel business, but people remember the quality stuff. Keep it real, girl.

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  8. Swat Kats? That totally sounds like something I would watch. Bring back 1994.

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  9. damn that shit reminds me of street sharks. ted turner would do something douchey like that.

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  10. swat cats was cool as hell! Them and pirates of dark water.

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  11. I have no idea what you are talking about. Never saw that.

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  12. wow, and i have never heard of this.

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  13. Oh I still remember Swat Kats, I even played the snes game in the house of one of my friends.

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  14. God, I so loved that cartoon!
    Following, mate! :)

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  15. it was the highest rated cartoon in 94? what about rugrats? i remember swat kats, but never watched it.

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  16. That's not cool. Jane Fonda gave my dad herpes. Followed, hope for the same from you. ;)

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  17. I have never ever heard of this cartoon in my life.

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  18. Totally used to watch this cartoon lol. But didn't remember it until I saw that pic.

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  19. Wow I was in my cartoon watching prime and I have no recollection of this.

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  20. The last sentence should be repeated over and over.

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  21. I remeber Swat Kats, too bad they removed it... :(

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