Anthropomorphic Characters in Animation - A Discussion

Discussion in 'The toonzone - General Animation Discussion' started by Mr. Daniel, Nov 8, 2015.

  1. Mr. Daniel

    Mr. Daniel Back (but just occasionally)

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    Personally, I don't mind when animals speak. I don't find it cute but quite engaging. It's interesting how animators can make two or more different animals, pair them up (romantically or un-romantically), and send them on a adventure. Like in Bolt. My only problem with talking animals is when they're making pop cultural references and/or telling terrible jokes like in Shark Tale or Epic.
     
  2. Goldstar Neo

    Goldstar Neo Good Morning!

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    I can deal with anthropomorphic animal characters for the most part, although I feel that the "2 animals embarking on an epic adventure" premise is getting a tad old now and I'd like to see more USAnimated features centering on human characters. The only time I don't like anthros is when human characters are turned into animals for no reason at al (EX: The Watterson family on The Amazing World of Gumball) and when the characters barely qualify as animals like the characters on PBS' Arthur who are essentially 90% human man-things. That crosses the line from cute to creepy.
     
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  3. Silverstar

    Silverstar Rock the Dragon

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    I'm OK with anthropomorphic animals in animation...to a point; as long as the animal characters, despite their anthropomorphism, remain animals and it's never forgotten that they're animals, then I'm fine with it. Examples of tolerable anthropomorphism for me would be Scooby-Doo or Barbie's pets on Life in the Dreamhouse or Littlest Pet Shop, minus the communication barrier. Something like the occasional talking animal people on Dragon Ball is as far as I'm willing to go with that. A story where the animals take the place of humans and wear full compliments of clothing like Disney's upcoming Zootopia or when the animals are anthropomorphized to the point where they don't do anything animal-like and are really just humans with animal features, no. That's the line for me.
     
  4. Lord Hater

    Lord Hater Retired

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    Why is it that every single currently running preschool show has talking animals?

    I like anthromorphic animals as long as they look like animals and act like them (Sofia the First, We Bare Bears). However, I don't find it appealing when they are wearing clothes or are too humanlike (The Amazing World of Gumball). Sometimes they can be just plain creepy (Alvinnn!!! and the Chipmunks).
     
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    #4 Lord Hater, Nov 8, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2015
  5. Silverstar

    Silverstar Rock the Dragon

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    TV producers have a long-standing idee fixe that the presence of animals automatically makes a cartoon more attractive to young kids. Also, animals are often used so artists won't have to designate a specific race for their characters, thus giving them universal appeal.
     
  6. Goldstar Neo

    Goldstar Neo Good Morning!

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    I agree with the above examples, except for The Amazing World of Gumball. There's no reason for the Watterson family to be anthropomorphic animals, as they don't do anything that animals do and are essentially human characters in animal guise. Those characters could have been made as cartoon humans and it wouldn't have affected the series at all. The only exception is Darwin, since his backstory is that he was a pet who magically became sentient.
     
  7. Rhaynebow

    Rhaynebow Well-Known Member

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    I don't really mind anthro characters and I tend to enjoy the creative means the artists go through to show how these animal people go about their day. Like having tools for cat people to use to groom their tails. I especially like mice and how they tend to use our small objects like buttons or thimbles as their furniture.

    I feel that it can be a tad odd when it seems like cartoons are just animals for no reason. No human characters in We Bare Bears seems to acknowledge that 3 huge bears stacked on top of each other are buying froyo in San Francisco. The premise of the show is that the Bears are trying to fit in with human society, but other than being minor nuisances, they fit in fine. I guess it's that anthro characters offer more flexibility in any shenanigans. TAWOG wouldn't be as funny if the characters were all human. Gumball goes to school with a t-Rex, a peanut-fairy, a robot, a banana, and a paper-cutout among other things. If they were all human, then the show would just be another slice of life show about kids 'just like you' which sounds boring. It's really confusing though. Why do we call a show about humans bland but call it exciting when we take the same premise and just make the characters animals?


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  8. Goldstar Neo

    Goldstar Neo Good Morning!

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    Some (but not all) of the supporting characters on Gumball need to be non-humans, such as Tina (T-Rex), Carrie (ghost), Banana Joe (banana) and Bobert (robot), because that's the only way that their characters work. But the Wattersons and Penny don't need to be things, because they just act and live like humans. For the most part, I think that the cast of Gumball being things is little more than an attention getting device. Personally, I don't anthropomorphize my characters unless I need to.
     
  9. ToonJay723

    ToonJay723 Bingo Bongo
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    I don't mind anthropomorphic animal characters. I just don't like it when they're romantically paired with human characters. That's why I couldn't get into "Panda's Date" and "Video Date" from We Bare Bears.
     
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  10. jaylop97

    jaylop97 Moderator
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    Im indifferent , but I hate it when the animals show no prime characteristics like Mordecai who never flies, but Rigby stills shows raccoon characteristics.
     
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  11. PapaGreg

    PapaGreg Peppermint tea for me

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    There were plenty of times where Darwin,Gumball, Nicole and Richard acted like fish, cats, and rabbits just because they don't do it in every episode doesn't mean it isn't there for a reason
     
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  12. Mikurotoro92

    Mikurotoro92 Banned

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    why aren't you complaining about human-like animal characters in video games? (a certain nintendo game which just so happens to have "animal" in the name comes to mind) that's even worse then cartoons! this has been going on in cartoons since MICKEY MOUSE! are you saying you hate mickey?!

    EDIT: but then again japan likes there cutesy animal characters so that might explain it!
     
  13. TFormersMarvel

    TFormersMarvel Active Member

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    First off, this is an animation forum. Most often than not, an example is going to be tied to animated properties and media (Animal Crossing is a video game series and, to my knowledge, has never had any animated series or shorts). Plus, it didn't sound like the original poster had a problem with Mickey specifically (based on his interest of anthropomorphic animals going on an adventure, which Mickey does from time to time).

    As a side nitpick , Felix The Cat predates Mickey on the concept animation wise.
     
  14. Mikurotoro92

    Mikurotoro92 Banned

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    AC actually does have an animated japanese movie so wouldn't it count? yeah it's a game series but wouldn't the same thing apply? i was saying that talking animals is worse with games then cartoons becuase cartoons have been doing that for years & used AC as an example (i know there are many games with anthropomorphic characters)
     
  15. TFormersMarvel

    TFormersMarvel Active Member

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    My bad regarding animated adaptations of Animal Crossing. Regardless, I fail to see how video games are worse with anthropomorphic animal characters. Both medias have been using them since their creation (in video games, Sonic (himself) and Mario's enemies and allies) because the concept of anthropomorphic anything has been around since "the dawn of time". It's just a writing device, nothing more or less.
     
  16. Dr.Pepper

    Dr.Pepper Well-Known Member

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    I'm okay with animals that can talk like Scooby Doo, but I am typically not into "animal people" that much. I don't hate them entirely, but if I had my own show, I wouldn't be having characters of the level as Arthur.
    That can be said for any kinds of characters.
     
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  17. Gatordragon

    Gatordragon I get knocked down, but I keep getting up.

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    Yeah, that always bugged me about Mordecai. He acts too human. I feel like if you make an anthropomorphic character, get some mileage out of the animal side. It's one of the reasons why I like BoJack Horseman.
     
  18. Red Arrow :D

    Red Arrow :D Proud Beneluxer

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    Mordechai acts just as human as Mickey Mouse.
     
  19. jaylop97

    jaylop97 Moderator
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    What's different is that in MM most characters are anthropomorphic, while RS there a blend of animal and human you got to make some differences otherwise what's the point of making them anthropomorphic if they mainly act human rather than animal, unless if the world is mainly animal with human influence.
     
  20. Xxerox

    Xxerox Member

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    Anthropomorphic animals ARE NOT talking animals. Get it in your skulls. Do not talk about things you do not understand ... The start of Zootopia pretty much explained it : Anthropomorphic are animals THAT WALK ON 2 LEGS and act like humans. Talking animals ARE JUST talking animals.

    Now lets get into business : I love anything with animals as characters no matter if it makes sence or not. You , All of you think that Animals have to be specific. That everything has to be a certain way because you want it to be because of your every day lives. Well, in cartoons , movies, books, in everything , Imagination comes first. Things like uncommon does not matter. If an antropomorfic animals act like human, then it was intended to act like human. You only do not like it because in real life it acts like an animal.

    If there were more humans in Mikey Mouse, would you like it in a different way? What if Mikey was the only anthro thing there?

    For Regular Show - Mordekai is as much human as is Benson. Stereotipes - Birds fly , animals act like animals.
     

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