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Author Topic: The Tone of Arthur  (Read 453 times)

Jekyll Jekyll Hyde

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The Tone of Arthur
« on: October 29, 2013, 04:00:07 pm »
Has anyone noticed the tone of "Arthur" has changed over the years. As I said in the 'D.W Always Off the Hook' post, I noticed that a lot of Season 12-15 episodes, especially in Season 14, had a very preachy tone and were hardly humorous. Why did this happen?
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Snowth Woogle

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Re: The Tone of Arthur
« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2013, 05:49:01 pm »
Cerebus Syndrome.

It happens quite often to long running series that are usually humorous; M*A*S*H had the same problem, it started out as a sitcom, then is slowly, but progressively became a comedy with dramatic undertones, before becoming a full-blown preach fest with little-to-no comedy whatsoever.
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ralfsmouse

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Re: The Tone of Arthur
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2013, 08:15:28 pm »
Cerebus Syndrome.

It happens quite often to long running series that are usually humorous; M*A*S*H had the same problem, it started out as a sitcom, then is slowly, but progressively became a comedy with dramatic undertones, before becoming a full-blown preach fest with little-to-no comedy whatsoever.
I remember this happening with 21 Jump Street (the TV show, obviously), the first season was a cool show about undercover cops busting kids with drugs in schools. The second season literally had almost every episode have a moral of some kind. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the morals, but sometimes I just didn't want them handed to me when I just wanted to see some people get the law handed to them.

I still enjoy Arthur, but I enjoyed it more when it was just a show without a huge amount of life lessons given to the viewers.

Ladonna Compson

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Re: The Tone of Arthur
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2013, 06:50:52 pm »
the original Arthur was written by...someone... who had a good sense of humor. when Arthur was sold off to its second company, they thought that since everyone liked Arthur so much, that anyone who made the episodes could make them as well as anyone else, and everyone would still like it. compared to other cartoons of the age, Arthur was the only kids show that was funny enough (and had enough heart.) that kids and adults fell in love with it. in fact, Arthur was probably the first kids show to have an adult fan base, however, since that was a relatively new concept, the people in charge didn't know how to handle it well.
look at My Little Pony, for instance, (yes, I am a Brony.) the people who make that are considerate of the fan base, and keep the quality (animation and otherwise) up to its normal standards. Arthur could have been more popular with fan boys and girls than it is right now (and it is still pretty popular, but only the really old episodes are watched, and really treated as canon.) if people didn't hand it around to different production company's and bring the quality to an all time low.
 the people (currently) in charge are being pretty inconsiderate to forget that adults and tweens are watching and hoping that the animation company's will remember that this show DOES have a fanbase. but this fanbase is gonna get really pissed if the people in charge keep on thinking that the show is popular enough that they can make the episodes so crappy and preachy. >:(

sorry. rant.
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Snowth Woogle

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Re: The Tone of Arthur
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2013, 10:03:24 pm »
Ehhh... I really don't follow that too well... you can't really blame it on the show being passed around from company to company (although that DOES play a factor, like when ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS got passed from Ruby-Spears to Fred Wolf, then later to DiC) when it pretty much lies with the creative staff: sure, it's been animated by different studios, but it's still the same writers and producers and such, but over the years, writers come and writers go, and some writers seem to be able to tap into the characters and capture their personalities better than others. It also depends on what direction the producers want to take the show, and overtime, the longer a show runs, you kind of HAVE to go in different directions, even if they're not the best directions, like how M*A*S*H went from being a sitcom with dramatic undertones to a full-on dark and depressing preachfest.

Plus, you have to keep in mind, another contributing factor is having to compete with other kid shows out there that compete to gain kids' attention... SESAME STREET starting having those kinds of the problems in the 90s (and yes, it too has had an adult fanbase, even since the 70s): not only did the show slowly start losing its original creative staff, but Barney came into the picture, and suddenly, all these higher ups decided SESAME STREEET needed a makeover, so the street lost its original inner city/urban grit and was cleaned up and brightened up, a bunch of different new characters were added, they started merchandising out the wazoo...
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Ladonna Compson

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Re: The Tone of Arthur
« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2013, 01:21:48 pm »
heh..yeah, I was really going on a rant just then... :-\ sorry. what I meant to say was, I thought the original problem was that the 80's writers didn't intend for it to become as popular as it did (though I am sure they appreciated it.) and when adults and even teens enjoyed the heart and humor, somebody got a little to excited, and since they didn't quite know how to handle the fandom, they just took it for granted that they could sell the show off to companies with less talent, and the show would still be popular. also, I don't think that when a show gets sold to a different company, it comes with the same writers and producers. but even if it does, the company in charge will still influence it, maybe to try to copy what it was like before, or maybe try to bring a "modern" feel to the show. whatever happens, the change in tone, which I perceive as the rise of annoying preachiness, as opposed to heartfelt life lessons, and the downfall of witty humor and nostalgic Arthur-ness, replaced with wacky, told-a-million-times jokes where the funniest it gets is slapstick, and a "modern" way of doing things, which works with some shows, and not at all well with others. although, as I have stated before, I do see a slight rise in overall quality of the episodes as they come out, and hopefully the episodes will soon be close to the normal standard. I think story9 is starting to understand that to make Arthur work, they need to take a leaf out of cinar(cookie jar's? whatever. the name of the first company that produced arthur)'s book, and make Arthur the way that it was made before. with a little bit of a modern tough, but not piled on the way it was in season 16. ugh.

Don't take all of me too seriously. This topic just really gets me steamed, but I tried to be clearer this time. Kudos if you actually read the whole thing.  ;D
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ralfsmouse

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Re: The Tone of Arthur
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2013, 08:20:40 pm »
they need to take a leaf out of cinar(cookie jar's? whatever. the name of the first company that produced arthur)'s book...
At first it was Cinar, but they were involved in a tax scandal and they had to become Cookie Jar.