Saturday mornings used to be the nicest part of the week, right? Sitting in front of the television to watch hours of back-to-back cartoons, laughing heartily at completely clean comedy from shows like Dexter’s Laboratory and The Powerpuff Girls. But not everything was as clean it seemed. Our pure youthful minds merely skimmed over the lewd one-liners and crude adult jokes in kid’s cartoons.
Sure, cartoons are for children, but they are created by grownups. Such grownups who are aware that parents make up a significant portion of their audience. As a result, many animators hide sexual innuendos, drugs humor, dirty one-liners, and other adult jokes in kid’s cartoons. The gags are supposed to fly over kids’ heads and dive straight into the ears of older viewers. Sometimes they’re subtle, sometimes they’re not; however, there are a lot more of them than what you may assume. Here are 5 instances of adult jokes in kid’s cartoons we wish we never knew at all:
1. The sexual innuendo in Powerpuff Girls
If you are a late 90’s or early 2000’s kid, The Powerpuff Girls was probably one of your favorite shows. This is such an apparent inside joke for adult Powerpuff Girls fans that it’s astounding more parents didn’t notice and object at the time. Yes, we’re referring to the infamous episode “Cat Man Do,” in which the Mayor and his pet cat are featured. The Mayor, who relies on the Girls to keep his town safe from crooks, can be seen licking his cat. Consider another name for a cat, and you’ll get a sense of how dirty this program used to be! Anyone who has ever heard feline euphemisms will understand what’s going on here. Fortunately, for the majority of children, a cat is simply a cat.
2. Daffy Duck reading the Play Duck magazine in Looney Tunes
We can observe how even the most conservative decades of TV included some adult jokes in kid’s cartoons with this example. You might be surprised to discover that adult magazines are a type of sexual entertainment that frequently appears in children’s shows. This also applies to the Looney Tunes universe. We see Bugs and Daffy on a flight in one clip of the cartoon series, where Bugs reveals Daffy had been reading Play Duck magazine, a spoof of Playboy magazine that displays almost or fully nude women posing for shots. The scene insinuated that female ducks posed similarly in their universe.
3. The STD joke in SpongeBob Squarepants
SpongeBob is a highly sought-after sponge, as evidenced by the episode “Overbooked,” in which he strives to honor all of his promises to his friends. SpongeBob comes by a bakery to get a cake for Patrick’s birthday while rushing about during the episode. However, it turns out that the bakery’s only available cake is a one with purple icing that reads “Sorry about the Scabies.” This one would definitely make most adults squirm because most youngsters have no concept of what Scabies is (it’s an STD). The joke was inspired by writer Casey Alexander’s childhood encounters with the skin-eating parasites.
4. The ‘fastest man’ joke on Flash in the Justice League cartoon