As it turns out, there’s a lot to be learned from stoners who regularly watch Scooby Doo and other such animated programs. It seems no matter how old most of us get there’s always a desire to change the channel away from CNN and the latest disastrous news of the day in order to temporarily escape. Well, what better way to escape than through the seemingly innocent and often nostalgic world of cartoons? In case you haven’t noticed there’s a wide variety of animated options out there. Pixar flicks, SpongeBob Square Pants, The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, Anime (the kid friendly and not so kid friendly sort) or anything from AdultSwim’s insane animation block are sure to satiate your entertainment cravings.
With this in mind we’d like to take a look at some of the most popular and beloved cartoon characters who upon further inspection actually have some fairly major issues. Yes, we fully realize in many cases these bizarre characteristics help to define our favorites. Sometimes such issues and disorders may even be the very reasons we dig such characters. In any case, the fact remains if any real person were to act the way these cartoons acted they’d likely be vilified, jailed or promptly tossed into a padded room. That aside, let’s get to it and see if we can have some fun along the way.
Oh yeah, try not to comically walk off a cliff while reading this…in real life that hurts.
WINNIE THE POOH
Before we begin our discussion on the little red-shirted bear, Winnie the Pooh we should note something very interesting regarding all Pooh characters and their supposed psychological issues. Oddly enough there have been many psychoanalytic studies on author A.A. Milne’s beloved characters throughout the years. Eeore is often predictably diagnosed with severe depression, Rabbit with OCD and Christopher Robin apparently suffers from “dissociative identity disorder” which is often confused with schizophrenia.
For the purposes of this article we’ll just be looking at some personal favorites, Winnie the Pooh and Piglet too (Tigger would take forever and a day to truly dissect). To most folks who couldn’t care less about psychoanalyzing fictional forest creatures Winnie the Pooh is simply known for his easy going optimistic demeanor…and of course his love for honey.
Perhaps Pooh Bear’s fondness for honey is an understatement as it borders more along the lines of a severe and unhealthy eating disorder. Some may even venture to say Pooh’s adoration for the gooey sweetness is an addiction. Pooh’s unwavering need very often leads to altercations with Rabbit, a fellow forest neighbor who is already manic and short-fused (recall the OCD mention from earlier). Needless to say sensitivity is hardly Pooh’s strong point. In fact, nothing on God’s green earth could stop Pooh from grubbing honey off Rabbit whenever and however possible. Clearly honey is Pooh Bear’s “crack”.
To illustrate our point please refer to the following disturbingly common chain of events from the episode “Friend, in Deed”. In this particular scene Pooh's nasty habit is as plain as ever.
While we’re on the subject of the classic Pooh universe we may as well delve right into the one and only Piglet. He is the best friend of Winnie the Pooh.- however he’s not Pooh’s dealer. Piglet is most famous for his slight stutter and extremely timid disposition. Despite his generally shy personality Piglet usually comes out on top, which brings us to our next point.
Look more closely at the little glob of pink pictured above. While you may see a fragile creature of peace – any person who took Psych 101 and received at least a C average can see him for who he truly is. Piglet is a manipulative passive aggressive user who habitually exploits his innocent facade for his own selfish benefit.
Think we’re kidding? Witness his subtle psychological manipulation in the following episode, “How Much Is That Rabbit in the Window”.
Despite Rabbit being completely busy fighting off huge crows in his garden, Piglet doesn’t hesitative to pester him for a cooking pot in the midst of the chaos. This is the equivalent of asking your neighbor for a cup of sugar while they are fending off an intruder. Using his innocent charm Piglet gets what he wants and quickly wanders off without even asking Rabbit if he needs help fighting off the swarm of sky beasts tearing apart his crops. Apparently the residents of Pooh’s forest get off on f***ing with the tightly wound Rabbit. Perhaps Piglet simply figures if Rabbit starves to death there will be no need to give back the cooking pot?
Things get increasingly weirder in the episode “Me and my Shadow”. Feeling neglected by his friends Piglet begins an insane friendship…with his own shadow. Yes you read that right.
Naturally when Pooh and the others witness this sad spectacle they have little choice but to console “poor Piglet” and give him the attention he desperately seeks. Textbook manipulation at its finest.
For those among us who aren’t 80’s babies, He-Man is the lead character from the popular cartoon series Masters of the Universe. He-Man and his friends help defend the planet Eternia and the secrets of Castle Grayskull from the evil forces of Skeletor. Also, there may have been a few Mattel toys that came out of the deal…
On the surface He-Man may have been the ultimate “Power Sword” wielding hero. A true champion with a strong moral center and an unwavering passion to battle the forces of evil. That’s all well and good but what’s the deal with his true identity, Prince Adam?
Prince Adam is seen by everyone as lazy and cowardly for a very important reason. He pretty much is lazy and cowardly.
Interestingly, Adam’s secret identity is inexplicably known only to a select few people, one of which is Orko, the goofy comic-relief magician. Yet Adam doesn’t reveal his secret to his own parents King Randor and Queen Marlena the rulers of planet Eternia, or to his closet ally Teela, the adoptive daughter of his mentor Man-At-Arms. Historically many heroes have a secret persona because if their enemies found out they would undoubtedly go after the heroes’ loved ones and friends. However Adam’s parents are the royal rulers of Eternia and all of his close friends are Skeletor’s sworn enemies, so each of them are already walking targets. Thus we’re forced to wonder, what’s the point of Adam maintaining his secret identity?
His alter-ego of He-Man isn’t exactly perfect either upon further examination. While he may be the greatest hero of Eternia, He-Man can be quite preachy at times. Especially for someone who needlessly lies to his friends on a daily basis. Yes, he may save you after you fall into Beastman’s dragon pit, but guaranteed you’re going to have to sit through a long and stern lecture on safety and how to be a responsible young adult.
Lastly, there’s He-Man’s ego. Check the video below and watch him proudly proclaim at 50 seconds in that he’s “the most powerful man in the universe!” We’re sure hearing that type of talk all day made his mutant friend Mechaneck (whose main power was being able to extend his neck a few extra feet) feel pretty f***ing useless.