Tiny Toon Adventures was a mostly harmless cartoon with an interesting premise: the next generation of toons go to school to learn the basics of toondom from Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Warner crew. However, there was one dark spot in this otherwise kid-friendly show.
An episode has three of the toons discovering a drink and going too far with it, despite being kids.
Somehow, one drink split amongst the three of them is enough. They cavort about town, end up stealing a police car, and cause a crash that ends their lives. That's right, these happy-go-lucky toons drive and meet their maker. The episode was allegedly meant to be a PSA against it all, but was deemed too much and pulled. Now it's just a dark bit of trivia.
20Severe Choking Hazard
In the classic cartoon Gargoyles, the titular gargoyles turn to stone whenever the sun rises, cursed to only wake at night. But we know that already. The real tragedy is that the entire gargoyle turns to stone. Think about it. We often see them with their mouths open, throat also covered in stone. Then, when night comes, they burst free with explosive force.
That means that every night, a gargoyle wakes and gets an explosion of point rocks down his throat.
But hey, these guys are tough, right? Actually, no. The gargoyles are quite sensitive inside, as one episode shows a gargoyle reeling in pain from eating a hot pepper. So that explosion of stone shrapnel in their neck must be the worst form of suffering imaginable. And it happens every. Single. Day.
In the old school Doug, Doug often gets wrapped up in his fantasies. Several episodes are even fully dedicated to Quailman, Doug's imaginary superhero alter ego. That seems harmless enough. After all, who didn't imagine themselves in crazy exciting situations as a kid? Except Doug's fantasies actually put him in danger on several occasions. His daydreams have caused him to: ride his bike into the middle of a traffic jam, think he's a cowboy and mount the most rowdy horse in the ranch, and drift off while BEHIND THE WHEEL of a soapbox car. Yet for all of the times he's almost offed himself, Doug's parents don't seem too concerned. Nor do his friends. Or teachers. No one, really, seems to care that Doug might be on the borderline of some real issues.
18Are You Really Ready?
Spongebob is the source of countless memes...and maybe even nightmares. In one particularly dark episode, the Krusty Krab staff unwittingly ends a health inspector's life with a bad Krabby Patty called the Nasty Patty. That's already pretty grim, but it gets worse. The only logical course of action, Mr. Krabbs deems, is to bury them where no one will find it. He forces Spongebob to go along with this, and they take the body to a remote area under the cover of darkness. The episode ends with the inspector actually waking up, and everyone has a laugh. All is well, despite the attempted crime and destruction of evidence. And I thought Spongebob was such a happy show...
The Justice League cartoon was a lot better at offering a three-dimensional take on the classic heroes than the recent movie. One perfect example of this is the episode "For the Man Who Has Everything." It begins with a seemingly pleasant affair; Batman and Wonder Woman are on the way to visit Superman for his birthday. Only when they get there, they find him wrapped up by an alien parasite. It turns out that the alien is making Supes dream about what life would be like if Krypton was never destroyed, and he was free to live a perfect life with all his friends and family around him. Unfortunately, he discovers that it's a fantasy, and that he must willingly reject it to break free of the parasite. Talk about depressing. And on his birthday.