This article has been updated to reflect the statement of Cartoon Network on the matter.
Remembering the good ‘ol days, watching “The Powerpuff Girls” (a.k.a. one of the best cartoon shows in history) was my default hobby after a long day at school. Sometimes I had to negotiate with my grandmother to retrieve the TV remote just so I could watch my comfort show.
Years later, the superpowered clique still serves as my home—along with other shows in the Cartoon Network multiverse. But is a huge change awaiting its loyal viewers?
ICYMI, Warner Bros. Television Group cut 82 staffers and folded a fair few of its departments into one unit as part of its “restructuring and realignment” agenda, Variety reports. Just so you know, this change also includes squeezing Cartoon Network Studios (CNS) and Warner Bros. Animation (WBA) into a single team. CEO Channing Dungey wrote this in a company-wide memo.
“In Animation, run by Sam Register, President, Warner Bros. Animation and Cartoon Network Studios, we are implementing a new streamlined structure in which the development and main production teams will now work across both Warner Bros. Animation and Cartoon Network Studios,” the memo stated.
The company’s 43 vacant positions will no longer be filled, too. This totals to 125 terminated positions, representing 26 percent of the company’s workforce.
So, is Cartoon Network—as we know it—shutting down?
This merger has left Cartoon Network fans worried and confused, prompting a “shutting down” discourse online. Some have already expressed their condolences and favorite memories with the shows they grew up loving, while others thought the network’s death rumor was exaggerated.
Dungey’s memo also stated that CNS will continue to create original animated content for internal channels like Adult Swim, HBO Max, and Cartoon Network itself, despite the modifications. Moreover, there will be a renewed emphasis on creating content for other platforms and third-party networks as HBO Max leaves adult animation. WBA will be pushing greater focus on intellectual property and pre-existing characters.
The Verge writes that this change “might turn Cartoon Network into a shadow of its former self.”
A few days after the announcement however, Cartoon Network posted on social media: “Y’all we’re not dead, we’re just turning 30 😂.”
The comments section roused different sentiments. Some were relieved while others called out its programs’ “disappointing” quality. But others pointed out that while CN claims they’re not “dead,” the network has been removing and canceling classics.
For 30 years, Cartoon Network not only became our foundation of childhood nostalgia but also pushed the envelope in producing progressive and inclusive narratives. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that we don’t lose this essence as we wait for the next development.
Stills from “Adventure Time” and “The Powerpuff Girls”