|Launched||October 1, 1992|
|Owned by||Turner Broadcasting System
|Picture format||1080i (HDTV)
|Slogan||Are You CN What We're Sayin'?|
|Language||English (Spanish with SAP)|
|Headquarters||Atlanta, Georgia (general)
New York City (operational)
Los Angeles, California (West Coast)
(channel space shared with Adult Swim)
|DirecTV USA||296 (East; HD/SD)
297 (West; SD)
|Dish Network||176 (East; HD/SD)
177 (West; SD)
|DirecTV Latin America (caribbean)||320 (SD)|
|C band||AMC-11 - Channel 18 (4DTV Digital)
AMC-18 - Channel 20 (H2H 4DTV)
Galaxy 14 - 3820 V / 30000 / 3/4 (DVB-S2; SD)
|Available on many cable providers||Check local listings for channel number|
|AT&T U-Verse/CenturyLink Prism||1325 (East; HD; AT&T)
1326 (West; HD; AT&T)
325 (East; SD; Both Services)
326 (West; SD; Both Services)
|CenturyLink Prism||1326 (East; HD)
1327 (West; HD)
3054 (Spanish feed; SD)
|Verizon FiOS||757 (HD)
|Google Fiber||351 (HD/SD)|
|(available daily from 6:00 AM until 8:00 PM ET/PT)
Watch Cartoon Network
Cartoon Network is an American basic cable and satellite television channel that is owned by the Turner Broadcasting System division of Time Warner. The channel airs mainly animated programming, ranging from action to animated comedy. It was launched on October 1, 1992.
It is primarily aimed at children and teenagers between the ages of 7–15, and also targets older teens and adults with mature content during its late night daypart Adult Swim, which is treated as a separate entity for promotional purposes and as a separate channel by Nielsen for ratings purposes. A Spanish language audio track for select programs is accessible via SAP; some cable and satellite companies offer the Spanish feed as a separate channel.
As of August 2013, Cartoon Network is available to approximately 98,671,000 pay television households (86.4% of households with television) in the United States.
- 1 History
- 2 Programming
- 3 Management at Cartoon Network
- 4 Marketing
- 5 Controversy and censorship
- 6 Online
- 7 Sister channels and related projects
- 8 Cartoon Network On Demand
- 9 High definition channels and service
- 10 Mobile App
- 11 Video games
- 12 Movies
- 13 See also
- 14 References
- 15 Sources
- 16 External links
On August 4, 1986, Ted Turner's Turner Broadcasting System acquired Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/United Artists from Kirk Kerkorian; due to concerns over the debt load of his companies, on October 17, 1986, Turner was forced to sell MGM back to Kerkorian after approximately only 74 days of ownership. However, Turner kept much of MGM's film and television library made prior to May 1986 (as well as some of the United Artists library) and formed Turner Entertainment.
On October 3, 1988, its cable channel Turner Network Television was launched and had gained an audience with its extensive film library. At this time, Turner's animation library included the MGM cartoon library, the pre-1948 color Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies shorts, the Harman-Ising Merrie Melodies shorts (except Lady, Play Your Mandolin!), and the Fleischer Studios/Famous Studios Popeye cartoons.
On February 18, 1992, Turner Broadcasting System announced its plans to launch the Cartoon Network as an outlet for Turner's considerable library of animation. The channel's launch occurred on October 1, 1992, and was hosted by the MGM cartoon character Droopy in a special event called Droopy's Guide to the Cartoon Network, during which the first cartoon on the network, The Great Piggy Bank Robbery, was shown. Initial programming on the channel consisted exclusively of reruns of classic Warner Bros. cartoons (the pre-1950 Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies), the 1933–1957 Popeye cartoons, MGM cartoons, and Hanna-Barbera cartoons. At first, cable providers in New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., and Detroit carried the channel. By the time the network launched, Cartoon Network had an 8,500-hour cartoon library. From its launch until 1995, the network's announcers said the network's name with the word "The" added before "Cartoon Network", thus calling the network "The Cartoon Network". By the time that the network debuted, Cartoon Network also operated a programming block (containing its cartoons) that aired on TNT, entitled "Cartoon Network on TNT".
Cartoon Network was not the first cable channel to have relied on cartoons to attract an audience. Nickelodeon had paved the way in the 1980s. On August 11, 1991, Nickelodeon had launched three "high-profile" animated series: Doug, Rugrats and Ren & Stimpy, further signifying the importance of cartoons in its programming. The Disney Channel and The Family Channel had also included animated shows as part of their programming schedules, as did USA Network, whose Cartoon Express was widely popular. In each of these cases, until October 1, 1992, cartoons were only broadcast during the morning or the early afternoon. Prime time and late night hours were reserved for live-action programs, following the assumption that television animation could only attract child audiences, while Cartoon Network was a 24-hour single-genre channel with animation as its main theme. Turner Broadcasting System had defied conventional wisdom before by launching CNN, a channel providing 24-hour news coverage. The concept was previously thought unlikely to attract a sufficient audience to be particularly profitable, however the CNN experiment had been successful and Turner hoped that Cartoon Network would also find success.
Initially, the channel would broadcast cartoons 24 hours a day. Most of the short cartoons were aired in half-hour or hour-long packages, usually separated by character or studio – Down Wit' Droopy D aired old Droopy Dog shorts, The Tom and Jerry Show presented the classic cat-and-mouse team, and Bugs and Daffy Tonight provided classic Looney Tunes shorts. Late Night Black and White showed early black-and-white cartoons (mostly from the Fleischer Studios and Walter Lantz cartoons from 1930s, as well as black-and-white Merrie Melodies and MGM cartoons), and ToonHeads would show three shorts with a similar theme and provide trivia about the cartoons. There was also an afternoon cartoon block called High Noon Toons, which was hosted by cowboy hand puppets (an example of the simplicity and imagination the network had in its early years). The majority of the classic animation that was shown on Cartoon Network no longer air on a regular basis, with the exception of Tom and Jerry and Looney Tunes.
A challenge for Cartoon Network was to overcome its low penetration of existing cable systems. When launched on October 1, 1992, the channel was only carried by 233 cable systems. However, it benefited from package deals. New subscribers to sister channels TNT and TBS could also get access to Cartoon Network through such deals. The high ratings of Cartoon Network over the following couple of years led to more cable systems including it. By the end of 1994, Cartoon Network had become "the fifth most popular cable channel in the United States".
For the first few years of Cartoon Network's existence, programming meant for the channel would also be simulcast on TBS and/or TNT, both of which were still full-service cable networks that carried a variety of different programming genera, in order to increase the shows' (and Cartoon Network's) exposure; examples include The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest, Cartoon Planet, SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron and 2 Stupid Dogs.
The network's first exclusive original show was The Moxy Show, an animation anthology series first airing in 1993. The first series produced by Cartoon Network was Space Ghost Coast to Coast in 1994, but the show mostly consisted of "recycled animation cells" from the archives of Hanna-Barbera, being an ironic deconstruction of a talk show. It featured live-action guests, mostly consisting of celebrities which were past their prime or counterculture figures. A running gag was that the production cost was dubbed "minimal". The series found its audience among young adults who appreciated its "hip" perspective.
Kevin Sandler considered Space Ghost Coast to Coast instrumental in establishing Cartoon Network's appeal to older audiences. Space Ghost, a 1960s superhero by Hanna-Barbera, was recast as the star of a talk show parody. This was arguably the first time the network revived a "classic animated icon" in an entirely new context for comedic purposes. Grown-ups who had ceased enjoying the original takes on the characters could find amusement in the "new ironic and self-referential context" for them. Promotional shorts such as the "Scooby-Doo Project", a parody of the The Blair Witch Project, gave similar treatments to the Scooby gang. However, there were less successful efforts at such revivals. A Day in the Life of Ranger Smith and Boo Boo Runs Wild (1999) were short cartoons featuring new takes on Yogi Bear's supporting cast by John Kricfalusi. Their style of humor, sexual content and break in tone from the source material was rather out of place among the rest of the Cartoon Network shows, and the network rarely found a place for them in its programming.
In 1994, Hanna-Barbera's new division Cartoon Network Studios was founded and started production on What a Cartoon! (also known as World Premiere Toons and Cartoon Cartoons). This show debuted in 1995, offering original animated shorts commissioned from Hanna-Barbera and various independent animators. The network promoted the series as an attempt to return to the "classic days" of studio animation, offering full animator control, high budgets, and no limited animation. The project was spearheaded by Cartoon Network executives, plus John Kricfalusi and Fred Seibert. Kricfalusi was the creator of The Ren & Stimpy Show and served as an advisor to the network, while Seibert was formerly one of the driving forces behind Nickelodeon's Nicktoons and would go on to produce the similar animation anthology series Oh Yeah! Cartoons and Random! Cartoons.
Cartoon Network was able to assess the potential of certain shorts to serve as pilots for spin-off series and signed contracts with their creators to create ongoing series. Dexter's Laboratory was the most popular short series according to a vote held in 1995 and eventually became the first spin-off of What a Cartoon! in 1996. Three more series based on shorts debuted in 1997: Johnny Bravo, Cow and Chicken and I Am Weasel (the latter two as segments of the same show; I Am Weasel was later spun off into a separate show). These were followed by The Powerpuff Girls in 1998 and concluded with Courage the Cowardly Dog and Mike, Lu & Og in 1999. The unrelated series Ed, Edd n Eddy was also launched in 1999, creating a line-up of critically acclaimed shows. Many of these series premiered bearing the "Cartoon Cartoons" brand, airing throughout the network's schedule and prominently on Cartoon Cartoon Fridays, which became the marquee night for premieres of new episodes and series beginning on June 11, 1999.
In 1997, Cartoon Network launched a new action block called Toonami, which in its original incarnation had included shows like Sailor Moon, Tenchi Muyo!", Gundam Wing and "soon to be phenomenon across the nation" Dragon Ball Z. Toonami was hosted by Moltar from the Space Ghost franchise until 1999, where Toonami was later hosted by its own original character "T.O.M.".
These original series were intended to appeal to a wider audience than the average Saturday morning cartoon. Linda Simensky, vice president of original animation, reminded adults and teenage girls that cartoons could appeal to them as well. Kevin Sandler's article of them claimed that these cartoons were both less "bawdy" than their counterparts at Comedy Central and less "socially responsible" than their counterparts at Nickelodeon. Sandler pointed to the whimsical rebelliousness, high rate of exaggeration and self-consciousness of the overall output, each individual series managed.
In the 1990s, there was a show called Big Bag, a puppet show co-produced by Sesame Workshop (formerly known as Children's Television Workshop), the people responsible for Sesame Street. There was also Small World, which was more like a collection of animated preschool shorts from around the world. Reruns of Tom & Jerry Kids, A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, Hamtaro and Baby Looney Tunes were shown early in the morning.
In 1996, Turner Broadcasting System merged with Time Warner (ironically, Time Warner's predecessor Warner Communications had created rival Nickelodeon, now owned by Viacom, in 1977). The merger consolidated ownership of all the Warner Bros. cartoons, allowing the post-July 1948 and the former Sunset-owned black-and-white cartoons (which Warner Bros. had reacquired in the 1960s) releases to be shown on the network. Although most of the post-July 1948 cartoons were still contracted to be shown on Nickelodeon and ABC, the network would not air them until September 1999 (from Nickelodeon) and October 2000 (from ABC), however, the majority of the post-July 1948 cartoons that were shown on its now-sibling broadcast network The WB's Kids' WB block began airing on Cartoon Network in January 1997. Newer animated productions by Warner Bros.' animation subsidiary also started appearing on the network – mostly reruns of shows that had aired on Kids' WB and some from Fox Kids, along with certain new programs such as Justice League.
On April 1, 2000, Cartoon Network launched a digital cable and satellite channel called Boomerang, which was spun off from a program block on Cartoon Network that featured animated series and shorts from the 1980s and earlier.
On June 18, 2001, Betty Cohen, who had served as Cartoon Network's president since its founding, was fired by Jamie Kellner (the head of Turner Broadcasting at the time) due to creative disagreements. On August 22, Jim Samples was appointed general manager and Executive Vice President of the network, replacing Cohen.
Adult Swim debuted on September 2, 2001, with an episode of Home Movies; the block initially aired on Sunday nights, with a repeat telecast on Thursdays. Adult Swim was also where Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law, Sealab 2021 and Aqua Teen Hunger Force made their official debuts, although they first aired in December 2000, while Space Ghost Coast to Coast was on hiatus.
The first theatrical film based on a Cartoon Network program, The Powerpuff Girls Movie, was released on July 3, 2002. It received generally positive reviews from critics, but barely turned a profit.
On September 5, 2003, the "Cartoon Cartoon Fridays" block was rebooted in a live-action format as "Fridays", hosted by Tommy Snider, Nzinga Blake (2003–2004), and Tara Sands (2005–2007). It aired series outside the "Cartoon Cartoon" sub-brand such as Samurai Jack, Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends, Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi, Juniper Lee, Camp Lazlo, My Gym Partner's a Monkey, Squirrel Boy and Class of 3000. "Fridays" ended its run on February 23, 2007.
On June 14, 2004, Cartoon Network debuted an updated version of its original logo (with the checkerboard motif retained and the "C" and "N" being the centerpiece) and a new slogan, "This is Cartoon Network!" The bumpers introduced as part of the rebrand featured 2D cartoon characters from its shows interacting in a CGI city composed of sets from their shows. By now, nearly all of Cartoon Network's classic cartoon programming had been relocated to its sister network Boomerang to make way for new programming.
In 2005, Cartoon Network launched a block aimed at the preschool demographics called Tickle U. Shows featured on Tickle U included Gordon the Garden Gnome, Harry and His Bucket Full of Dinosaurs, Peppa Pig, Firehouse Tales, and Gerald McBoing-Boing. The block was a major failure to the network, and was plugged months after its premiere, making it one of the shortest-lived blocks on the station.
On December 8, 2006, Cartoon Network produced their first live-action television movie called Re-Animated, a collaboration between both live-action and animation. A year later in 2007, the film was spun off into its own half-hour series entitled Out of Jimmy's Head, which continues the events of the film. This was also the first show on Cartoon Network to feature live-action characters as the main cast, even though it was not the first to combine live-action and animation together (the first being Space Ghost Coast to Coast). The show was short-lived, as it only lasted for 20 episodes, making Out of Jimmy's Head the only show on Cartoon Network to be affected by the Writers Guild of America strike in 2007.
Jim Samples, who served as Cartoon Network's general manager and Executive Vice President since 2001, resigned on February 9, 2007, following a bomb scare in Boston caused by packages left around the city that were part of an outdoor marketing campaign promoting the Adult Swim series Aqua Teen Hunger Force. Following Samples's resignation, Stuart Snyder was named his successor. On September 1, 2007, the network's look was revamped, and bumpers and channel identification were themed to The Hives song Fall is Just Something That Grown-Ups Invented. Beginning on October 1, 2007, Cartoon Network aired 40 episodes of the former Fox Kids program Goosebumps, though Cartoon Network lost the rights to the show on October 31, 2009.
Starting in late 2007, the network began to air some imported programs from the Canadian channel Teletoon (such as George of the Jungle, Atomic Betty, 6teen, Chaotic, Bakugan Battle Brawlers, Stoked and the Total Drama series).
Cartoon Network announced at its 2008 upfront that it was working on a new project called Cartoonstitute, which was headed by animators Craig McCracken as executive producer and Rob Renzetti as supervising producer. Both reported to Rob Scorcher, who created the idea. It would have worked similar to What a Cartoon!, by creating at least 150 pieces of animation within 20 months. Cartoonstitute was eventually cancelled, and out of all the shorts, two or three, Regular Show, Secret Mountain Fort Awesome and Uncle Grandpa, were selected, after animator Craig McCracken (creator of The Powerpuff Girls and Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends) left the network after 15 years in 2009. On September 20, 2008, Cartoon Network ended Toonami after its 11-year run.
On May 25, 2008, Cartoon Network began airing animated shorts that served as interstitials between programs, called "Wedgies", which included The Talented Mr. Bixby, Nacho Bear, Big Baby and The Burmeno Avenue Experience. The Wedgies shorts ran from 2008 to 2009, with a second run in 2010; the shorts were discontinued afterward, although reruns can still be seen on Boomerang as of March 2013. On July 14, 2008, the network took on a refreshed look created by Tristan Eaton and was animated by Crew972. The bumpers of that era had white, faceless characters called Noods, based on the DIY toy, Munny. The standard network logo was then completely white, adopting different colors based on the occasion in the same style.
As April 23, 2009, Cartoon Network launched the pacific time zone western feed after Nick GAS discontinued for Dish Network customers.
In June 2009, Cartoon Network introduced a block of live-action reality shows called "CN Real", featuring programs such as The Othersiders, Survive This, BrainRush, Destroy Build Destroy, Dude, What Would Happen and Bobb'e Says. The network also aired some limited sports programming, including basketball recaps and Slamball games, during commercial breaks. That year, it also started airing live-action feature films from Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema.
Before the iconic logo and channel redesign, Cartoon Network slightly changed the Nood bumpers. During January, 2010, bumpers were replaced with live action shots of Noods, instead of animated ones, being spilled with paint, confetti, and dirt. Also when the bumps were about to end, a motion graphic would appear in the middle right saying "Dont Move", "Stick Around", or "Right Back". When the show would come back from the break, it would show the bumper's behind the scenes in a fast forward motion with various tracks playing in the background. Also the next bumpers were redesigned, with a corner shot of a Nood with black paint spilling, motion graphic with up-next, show name, show clip in the corner, Prefuse 73's Busy Signal playing in the background, and various colorful gradients. Since the up next bumpers could not of been found, a fan has recreated them in the references. These bumps were later replaces by the 'Check It' rebrand on May 29, 2010.
A new identity for the channel was introduced on May 29, 2010, along with a new theme and new bumpers. The network's current branding, designed by Brand New School, makes heavy use of the black and white checkerboard which made up the network's first logo (and was carried over in a minimized form to the second logo), as well as various CMYK color variations and various patterns. On December 27, 2010, Adult Swim expanded by one hour, moving its start time from 10 p.m. to 9 p.m. ET. In February 2011, Cartoon Network aired its first sports award show, called Hall of Game Awards, hosted that year by professional skateboarder Tony Hawk.
At its 2011 upfront, Cartoon Network announced 14 new series, including Adventure Time, Regular Show, The Problem Solverz (originally planned for Adult Swim, but switched to CN for being "too cute"), The Looney Tunes Show, Secret Mountain Fort Awesome, Level Up (a scripted live-action comedy series with a 90-minute precursor film), Tower Prep, Green Lantern, Dragons: Riders of Berk (a series based on the DreamWorks film, How to Train Your Dragon), The Amazing World of Gumball, Total Drama: Revenge of the Island, the 4th season of Total Drama; ThunderCats, Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu and Ben 10: Omniverse. The network announced it planned to debut a new block called DC Nation, that would focus on the titular heroes, the first being Green Lantern. 9 Story's Almost Naked Animals, an animated comedy from Canada's YTV about a group of shaved animals in their underwear running a hotel called the Banana Cabana, was also picked up by the network and made its U.S. debut on June 13, 2011, the same premiere date as another Canadian-acquired animated series, Sidekick.
After announcing two new live-action shows in Unnatural History and Tower Prep, which were both cancelled after their first seasons, Cartoon Network acquired the game show, Hole in the Wall. By the end of 2011, Hole in the Wall and the final two CN Real shows, Destroy Build Destroy and Dude, What Would Happen? were removed from Cartoon Network's schedule completely. In 2012, Cartoon Network acquired the television rights to the web series, The Annoying Orange and added it to its primetime lineup. For a short time, Cartoon Network also returned two 1960s cartoons, The Flintstones and The Jetsons, to its daytime lineup, after years of being seen only on Boomerang.
In 2011, Cartoon Network began broadcasting the Mondo TV's animated series Virus Attack, an animated cartoon created to raise awareness of pollution-related problems in the audience of youngsters. The series consists of 52 episodes of about 13 minutes each and was first aired on 1 April 2011.
On February 2, 2012, Corus Entertainment and Astral Media, owners of Teletoon, announced they would launch a Canadian version of Cartoon Network that also includes a version of the U.S. network's Adult Swim nighttime block. The channel launched on July 4, 2012.
On March 18, 2012, Cartoon Network aired its first documentary, Speak Up, an anti-bullying campaign featuring a special appearance by President Barack Obama. On April 28, 2013, the network aired the CNN half-hour documentary The Bully Effect, which details the story of teenager Alex Libby and his struggle with bullying in high school. The special is based on the 2011 film Bully directed by Lee Hirsch.
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Cartoon Network, the Cartoon Planet block was revived on March 30, 2012, now airing the channel's original programming from the late 1990s through mid-2000s. From October 1 to November 4, 2012, Cartoon Network celebrated its 20th birthday, airing birthday and party-themed reruns of its shows.
In September 2012, began broadcasting the CGI animated series Gormiti Nature Unleashed, co-produced from Giochi Preziosi and Mondo TV. After the first Gormiti series success among Italy and Europe, production companies decided to revive it in a combination of 3D and CGI animation.
In 2012, Cartoon Network announced new programming for the upcoming year, including the live-action series Incredible Crew; the animated series Teen Titans Go!, Uncle Grandpa, Steven Universe, I Heart Tuesdays, Clarence, Total Drama: All-Stars, Grojband, Beware the Batman, The Tom and Jerry Show, and Legends of Chima; and a new Powerpuff Girls special, the latter of which aired on January 20, 2014.
In 2013, Cartoon Network cancelled both its most recent live-action series, Level Up and Incredible Crew. This currently means the network's only live-action venture, aside from Flicks, is their annual Hall of Game Awards show.
On May 20, 2013, Cartoon Network gave a refresh to its look by adding new bumpers, graphics, and sounds. The background used in its promos and bumpers was also changed from black to white.
On March 6, 2014, Stuart Snyder was confirmed to have been removed as president and COO of Turner's Animation, Young Adults & Kids Media division after company changes. On July 16, 2014, Christina Miller was named his successor.
On October 7, 2014, the series Transformers: Robots in Disguise was moved from the Hub Network to Cartoon Network, due to a change in the network's operation. It is scheduled to premiere in early 2015.
On October 21, 2014, Cartoon Network, along with CNN and Boomerang, were taken off the Dish Network in the United States after Turner Broadcasting declined to renew its contract with the Dish Network. The channels were restored on November 21, 2014.
Cartoon Network's current programming includes original programming such as Adventure Time, Regular Show, The Amazing World of Gumball, Uncle Grandpa, Steven Universe, Mixels, Ben 10: Omniverse, the current installment of the Ben 10 series, and Clarence. Acquired animated programming from other studios include The Tom & Jerry Show, Johnny Test, Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu and Legends of Chima, Teen Titans Go!, DreamWorks Dragons, the Pokémon anime series, and the Total Drama franchise. Live-action programming, only introduced in recent years, includes original live-action/animated hybrid The High Fructose Adventures of Annoying Orange, and formerly included live-action original productions such as Level Up and Incredible Crew. In addition, the network reruns various incarnations of the Scooby-Doo series, the Looney Tunes theatrical short subjects, and Tom and Jerry, which has been in constant rotation since Cartoon Network's 1992 launch.
Cartoon Network benefited from having access to a large collection of animated programming, including the libraries of Warner Bros. (Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies), Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (Tom and Jerry and other series), and Hanna-Barbera (The Flintstones, Scooby-Doo, Snorks, and others). Especially in its earlier years, the company's co-ownership with Hanna-Barbera gave the network access to an established animation studio, something chief rival Nickelodeon did not yet have.
Much of Cartoon Network's original programming originates from the network's in-house studio, Cartoon Network Studios. The studio originally began as a small division of Hanna-Barbera but eventually was spun off when that studio was folded into Warner Bros. Animation in the late 1990s. This studio would produce some of the network's earliest original series, including Dexter's Laboratory, Johnny Bravo, The Powerpuff Girls, Ed, Edd n Eddy and Cow & Chicken.
By the early 2000s, Cartoon Network had established programming blocks aimed at different age demographics. The shows broadcast during the early morning had preschoolers as their target audience and mostly had prosocial behavior as a theme. The Toonami programming block, featured later in the day, mostly included anime shows and its target audience were tweens and teenagers. Prime time shows mostly included classic cartoons, featured as part of The Tex Avery Show, The Chuck Jones Show and The Bob Clampett Show.
||This section possibly contains original research. (August 2014)|
From 1997 to 2003, most of Cartoon Network's original series were primarily referred to by the collective moniker "Cartoon Cartoons". These series were produced by Hanna-Barbera and Cartoon Network Studios, with smaller studios focusing on individual projects. All Cartoon Cartoons were featured as part of Cartoon Network's Friday night programming block, Cartoon Cartoon Fridays. It is generally accepted that every Cartoon Network original series that premiered between 1996 and 2003. The first Cartoon Cartoon, Dexter's Laboratory, premiered in 1996, while the final Cartoon Cartoon, Evil Con Carne (a spin-off of fellow Cartoon Cartoon Grim & Evil), premiered in 2003. Ed Edd n Eddy was the longest-running Cartoon Cartoon, and also the last one to end (in 2009).
In 2004, Cartoon Network stopped using the Cartoon Cartoon moniker for its original animation that was still in production. On September 12, 2005, CN debuted The Cartoon Cartoon Show, a half-hour program featuring re-runs of older cartoons (such as Johnny Bravo, Mike, Lu & Og and Whatever Happened to... Robot Jones?) that were no longer shown regularly on the network. The program ended on July 1, 2008; since its ending, the "Cartoon Cartoon" sub-brand has been dropped altogether, and on Cartoon Network's official website, the name is nowhere to be found, not even when referring to older shows like The Powerpuff Girls and Cow & Chicken.
As of 2012, the Cartoon Cartoons along with other Cartoon Network Studios shows (from the post-Cartoon Cartoons era) have been airing in reruns on the 2012 revival of Cartoon Planet, a block strictly airing Cartoon Cartoons and other original shows for the network's 20th anniversary.
Management at Cartoon Network
- 1992–2001: Betty Cohen
- 2001–2007: Jim Samples
- 2007–2014: Stuart Snyder
- 2014–present: Christina Miller
Cartoon Network shows with established fan followings, such as Dexter's Laboratory, allowed the network to pursue licensing agreements with companies interested in selling series-related merchandise. For example, agreements with Kraft Foods led to widespread in-store advertising for Cartoon Network-related products. The network also worked on cross-promotion campaigns with both Kraft and Tower Records. In product development and marketing, the network has benefited from its relation to corporate parent Time Warner, allowing for mutually beneficial relationships with various subsidiary companies.
Time Warner Cable, the former cable television subsidiary of the corporate parent (which was spun off from Time Warner in 2009), distributes Cartoon Network as part of its packages. Turner Broadcasting System, the subsidiary overseeing various Time Warner-owned networks, helped cross-promote Cartoon Network shows and at times arranged for swapping certain shows between the networks. For example, Samurai Jack, one of CN's original shows, was at times seen at Kids' WB, while Cardcaptors, an anime licensed by Kids' WB, was at times seen at Cartoon Network. In each case, the swap intended to cultivate a shared audience for the two networks. Time Inc., the former subsidiary overseeing the magazines of the corporate parent, ensured favorable coverage of Cartoon Network and advertising space across its publications. Printed advertisements for CN shows could appear in magazines such as Time, Entertainment Weekly and Sports Illustrated Kids until Time Inc. was spun off from Time Warner on June 9, 2014. AOL, a now-former sibling company to Time Warner covering Internet services, helped promote Cartoon Network shows online by offering exclusive contents for certain animated series, online sweepstakes and display advertising for CN.
Warner Home Video, the home video subsidiary, distributed VHS tapes, DVDs and Blu-ray Discs featuring Cartoon Network shows. Select Warner Bros. Family Entertainment VHS releases came with bonus cartoons from Cartoon Network. Rhino Entertainment, the former record label subsidiary of the corporate parent (which was spun off from Time Warner in 2004), distributed cassette tapes and CDs with Cartoon Network-related music. These products were also available through the Warner Bros. Studio Store. DC Comics, the comic book subsidiary, published a series featuring the Powerpuff Girls, indicating it could handle other CN-related characters. Warner Bros., the film studio subsidiary, released The Powerpuff Girls Movie in 2002. Kevin Sandler considered it likely that the film would find its way to HBO or Cinemax, two television network subsidiaries which regularly broadcast feature films. Sandler also viewed book tie-ins through Warner Books as likely, since it was the only area of marketing not covered yet by 2001.
Controversy and censorship
Cartoon Network has, during its history, broadcast most of the Warner Bros. animated shorts originally created between the 1920s and the 1960s, but the censorship practices of the network and its corporate parent resulted in editing out scenes depicting discharge of gunfire, alcohol ingestion, cowboys and Indians gags, tobacco, and politically incorrect humor. The unedited versions were kept from both broadcasting and wide release on the video market. Coal Black and de Sebben Dwarfs (1943), a politically incorrect but critically well-regarded short, was notably omitted entirely, while The Scarlet Pumpernickel (1950) and Feed the Kitty (1952), both well-regarded, had their finales heavily edited due to violence.
There was controversy in 2001 over a network decision concerning further omissions from broadcasting. Cartoon Network scheduled a 49-hour-long marathon promising to broadcast every Bugs Bunny animated short in chronological order. The network originally intended to include 12 shorts that had become controversial for using ethnic stereotypes, albeit broadcasting them past midnight to ensure no children were watching, with introductions concerning their historic value as representatives of another time. The network's corporate parent, however, considered it likely that there would be complaints concerning racial insensitivity. This led to all 12 being omitted in their entirety. Laurie Goldberg, vice-president of public relations, defended the decision, stating, "We're the leader in animation, but we're also one of the top-rated general entertainment networks. There are certain responsibilities that come with that".
Following complaints by its adult fanbase, the network offered a compromise solution: the 12 omitted animated shorts would be included in upcoming documentaries. The first such documentary was a special on "The Wartime Cartoons". It notably included Herr Meets Hare (1945) in its entirety, but only certain clips of Bugs Bunny Nips the Nips (1943). Kevin Sandler considered it a positive sign of the network being willing to "confront and unveil" some of the dishonorable aspects of animated history, but noted that so far only the Warner Bros. shorts got this serious treatment, not the MGM animated shorts also broadcast by the network.
When Cartoon Network began rerunning the original Looney Tunes again in March 2011 (given their own time slot this time in place of marathons during New Year's Day), most censored scenes in some cartoons (along with original title cards) have been reinstated, such as gunfire and alcohol, though the network still edits out racially insensitive scenes. Three of the network's shows, Adventure Time, Regular Show, and Mad have shown scenes of violence, mild profanity, sexual references, sexual themes, drug references, demon possession and alcohol references. Rebroadcasts of these series in earlier timeslots may feature edits for time or content. Examples of cartoons that have had their censored scenes and title cards reinstated include Scaredy Cat and For Scent-imental Reasons, two cartoons that have shown gunfire.
Many licensed anime programs broadcast on the action-themed block Toonami had to be edited in order to receive a TV-Y7 or a TV-PG rating because of objectionable content that could be considered offensive or inappropriate to its younger viewers. Despite this fact, Toonami managed to get these series on the air through editing out heavy amounts of violence, drug usage, language, sexuality and nudity particularly with Rurouni Kenshin, YuYu Hakusho, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Gundam, Dragon Ball Z, Outlaw Star, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Tenchi Muyo!, Dragon Ball and Sailor Moon; however, scenes with some swearing, suggestive dialogue and depictions of blood were broadcast uncensored. Series such as Yu Yu Hakusho, Cyborg 009 and Rurouni Kenshin, which were becoming much too violent and dark to edit, were moved to later timeslots. Anime such as Naruto and One Piece received minor editing and include light swearing, partial nudity, and alcohol references.
In November 2006, Cartoon Network and Schoolly D were sued over the authorship of the Aqua Teen Hunger Force theme music. Drummer Terence Yerves claimed he had co-written the theme music with Schoolly D in 1999, while working at the Meat Locker Studio. Yerves was aware the song would be used for a television series but did not approve of it being used for Aqua Teen Hunger Force, however, he did not file the copyright to the Library Of Congress until May 2006, after the series' fourth season had already started airing. Yerves demanded in the lawsuit a payment of $150,000 for each time the series aired after the lawsuit was filled, he also demanded that all existing copies of the series' DVDs be impounded and for Aqua Teen Hunger Force to be cancelled by the network.
Cartoon Network registered its official website, CartoonNetwork.com, on January 9, 1996. It officially launched on July 27, 1998. Sam Register served as the site's Senior Vice President and Creative Director from 1997 to 2001. In its early years, small studios partnered with the network to produce exclusive "Web Premiere Toons", short cartoons made specifically for CartoonNetwork.com. More about animation was included in the "Department of Cartoons", which featured storyboards, episode guides, backgrounds, sound and video files, model sheets, production notes, and other information about shows on the network. In January 1999, the Department of Cartoons showcased the "MGM Golden Age Collection", most of which had not been published or even seen in more than 50 years. Cartoon Network launched Cartoon Orbit, an online gaming network characterized by digital trading cards called "cToons", in October 2000. The game officially ended on October 16, 2006.
In October 2000, CartoonNetwork.com outdid its rival Nickelodeon's website in terms of unique users, scoring 2.12 million compared to Nick.com's 1.95 million. In July 2007, Nielsen ratings data showed visitors spent an average of 77 minutes on the site, surpassing the previous record of 71 minutes set in 2004, and the site ranked 26th in terms of time spent for all U.S. domains.
Adult Swim (often stylized as [adult swim] or [as]) is a teen/adult-oriented nighttime programming service that airs on Cartoon Network from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. ET/PT in the United States, and broadcasts in countries such as Australia and New Zealand; Adult Swim is treated by Nielsen as a separate network in its ratings reports (similar to the company's ratings treatment of Nickelodeon and Nick at Nite and Nickmom) due to differing target demographics between it and Cartoon Network. The network features myriad stylistically variable animated and live-action shows, including original programming, syndicated shows mainly consisting of Fox animated programming, and Japanese anime, generally with minimal or no editing for content. The programs featured on Adult Swim are geared toward an 18+ audience, in contrast to the originally all-ages young Teen and preteen daytime programming on Cartoon Network. Adult Swim has moved its start time up an hour at 8pm on March 31, 2014.
Toonami (a portmanteau of "cartoon" and "tsunami", suggesting a "tidal wave" of animated cartoons) is a brand of Cartoon Network, used initially for action-oriented programming blocks on Cartoon Network television channels worldwide, mostly showing American cartoons and Japanese anime, originating in the United States on March 17, 1997, and ending on September 20, 2008. It was revived on May 26, 2012, as a Saturday night anime block on Adult Swim, reclaiming their Saturday anime lineup, similar to its previous mature-geared "Midnight Run" incarnation which was that block's forerunner.
The Toonami brand was subsequently used in the United Kingdom as the name of an action-oriented animation channel with two CGI hosts. It replaced a former Cartoon Network-owned channel, CNX, which had been a Toonami/live-action hybrid network.
Boomerang began as a programming block on Cartoon Network on December 8, 1992, aimed towards the Baby Boom generation. The block's start time changed frequently but was always aired in the weekends. On April 1, 2000, Boomerang received a new look and was spun off into its own cable channel.
Move It Movement
Move It Movement (previously named Get Animated) is a campaign of the channel, encouraging children to get active, more importantly in outdoor areas. The program is designed "to provide support and encouragement in the ongoing battle against childhood obesity." The Get Animated campaign was launched on February 28, 2005.
Cartoon Network On Demand
Cartoon Network On Demand is a video on demand service, which launched in 2002, and allows viewers to watch the latest episodes of the most Cartoon Network programming. These Cartoon Network episodes are rentable and are available in wide screen and in high definition. Some on demand programs for Cartoon Network will restrict the ability to fast forward if the episode is fairly new. If the program cannot fast forward, the intro will be replaced by an advisory bumper saying "You're watching Cartoon Network On Demand, Fast-Forward is not available during this program" 
High definition channels and service
A high definition feed of Cartoon Network is available on many cable and all satellite service providers. The high definition feed was launched on October 15, 2007. Like all Turner networks, 4:3-sourced content is stretched on the high definition feed to fill the 16:9 aspect ratio. The network's HD content airs with letterboxing on the standard definition channel, and since May 13, 2013, the high definition feed is downscaled by the provider for the standard definition feed, resulting in all programming appearing in a 16:9 ratio with letterboxing. Unlike the other Turner networks, standard definition advertising is also stretched into 16:9 mode.
Cartoon Network has a mobile app that provides the latest full episodes, a live stream from the East and West coast, and games, as well as the network's schedule.
In 2011, Cartoon Network characters were featured in a four-player mascot brawler fighting game similar to Nintendo's Super Smash Bros. video game series called Cartoon Network: Punch Time Explosion for the Nintendo 3DS. The game was later released for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and the Wii as Cartoon Network Punch Time Explosion XL. Several video games based on the cartoon series Ben 10 were released by Cartoon Network as well. The Cartoon Network website also features various flash games incorporating characters from various Cartoon Network franchises. For example FusionFall which was a massive multiplayer game released in 2009 and shut down in 2013.
Cartoon Network Movies (simply known as Cartoon Network) is an American motion picture production arm of the cable channel. It has produced family features and films based on Cartoon Network programs, as well as other adaptations and original projects. The films are released by Time Warner division Warner Bros. Pictures. The films released so far include:
- The Powerpuff Girls Movie (2002)
- Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters (2007, co-production with Adult Swim)
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