For as long as the entertainment medium has been around animation has always played an important role. Cartoons have had a strong influence not just in society, but in the medium itself. Those are the shows that I will be looking at, cartoons that challenge the status quo, and in one case brought a network back from disaster. These are the top 5 influential Cartoons.
5. Fritz The Cat (1972)
Let us start this list with easily the most controversial cartoon on the list. Fritz the Cat directed by Ralph Bakishi follows the titular character attending a rally in order to meet a group of women. The rally goes wrong as the police arrive and Fritz’s night spirals down a circle of violence, drugs, and sex. The movie aired in 1972, and serve as an interesting look at the counter culture of the time. Police officers were portrayed by pigs, along with other stereotypes. The movie was divisive for its time and it is still looked down upon, despite earning a spot in the Online Film Critics Society List of 100 greatest animated movies of all time.
What the movie does demonstrate is that even cartoons could portray themes such as drugs, and sexuality in a spotlight that was only seen in live-action at the time. As a cartoon, these themes are shown in a strange, even surreal approached making the movie feel like a dream, but at the same time extremely relateable.