Not Sure If Want Yet – Regular Looney Tunes Returning
Coming from The New York Times is the news that Warner Bros will once again be attempting to revitalize the Looney Tunes franchise later this year. For one, 26 episodes of a new cartoon series have been commisioned in the fall and focus mainly around Bugs and Daffy (hence the art on the left). Yosemite Sam, Tweety Bird, Slyvester, Porky Pig and Marvin the Martian are mentioned as neighbours of the pair, who are room-mates in a cul-de-sac. This will be showing on Cartoon Network.
Meanwhile in cinemas, Road Runner and Wile.E.Coyote will be appearing in a 3D short done in CGI. Whether by 3D Warner just mean the animation or the perspective will remain to be seen. The bad news? These shorts are being attached to the Cats and Dogs sequel, which is out on July 30th. Hopefully this short will make its way on the Internet soon after.
It comes as no surprise that Warner Bros is trying to do something new with Looney Tunes while keeping to the tradition. While the franchise is still popular with generations of people, the profits made have slowly been falling over the last 10 or so years, as with only reruns to offer, Cartoon Network and the like would much rather invest in new cartoons. As for going back to basics, this is definitely a step in the right direction.
From Space Jam onwards, Looney Tunes hasn’t been treated well at all. Flops like Looney Tunes: Back In Action and The Loonatics Unleashed failed to find an audience and certainly didn’t go down well with the people who grew up watching reruns of the original cartoons, who are just as much of an influence on the child consumer as the television is.
While returning to the franchise’s roots is a good thing, whether WB will be able to pull it off is something we’ll find out over time. After all, these aren’t the same people who made the originals or even those who helped the 90s resurgence with Tiny Toon Adventures and Tazmania for example. With what today’s kids are into as well, it might not even interest them. Although the original voices of these characters are irreplaceable, recent efforts have not fared too badly so that is less worrying. As for the CGI, it’s a necessary evil to capture this child audience’s attention, especially in the cinema. The cartoon has an interesting premise and should work as long as it keeps to what made Looney Tunes so good in the first place. The fact that the cartoon artwork (above) doesn’t stray too far from the original either is certainly a good thing and hopefully Warner Bros will be able to pull it off. Hopefully.