Thursday, May 27, 2010

Cartoon Realism

Growing up, I loved watching cartoons. I use the term "growing up" loosely as I don't feel like a grown up, aside from paying taxes and having to go to work. I still love watching cartoons and The Simpsons is still one of my favorite shows. However, it becomes a surreal experience when you witness one of the voice actors doing the voice of the character in person. Continuing with this notion of realism, it is even more surreal when confronted with what the cartoon character would look outside of their pastel and neon colored world.

Bart Simpson

Bart is one of the most iconic cartoon characters of my generation. I still remember, in middle school, discovering that Bart was voiced by a woman...and it blew my mind. Nancy Cartwright has been the voice of Bart since the beginning of the show. As if he were one of her own children, Nancy has said, "Bart is a really good kid. He's just mischievous. He's not bad, like characters who followed him such as [Eric] Cartman or Beavis and Butthead. Bart can do some nasty things, but they seem so tame, by today's standards. What was shocking 19 years ago, when the show started, isn't the least bit shocking today. Bart hasn't changed." As do all of the other voice actors, Nancy is responsible for other characters, including Nelson Muntz, Ralph Wiggum, and Rod and Todd Flanders. Here is a video of Nancy doing several of her voices on the show:

Skip to around 2:30

Here is what Bart would look like in real life:


(click to enlarge - worth it for these)

Homer Simpson

Continuing with The Simpsons theme, since they are my favorite cartoon, we come to Homer J. Simpson. During the first few seasons of the show, Bart was always my favorite. He was generally the protagonist for the episode, in terms of comedic conflict and resolution. However, as the series progressed and...I use this loosely, "matured," Homer began to emerge from Bart's shadow to become the main comedic element. He is voiced by Dan Castellaneta. He also does Krusty, Barney, Grandpa, among others. Here is a video of Dan doing voices:

And here is what Homer would look like if he were a real person:

(again...creepy, but click to see a bigger picture)

(added bonus - real life Mr. Burns!)

Peter & Stewie Griffin

Without The Simpsons many primetime cartoon shows would not exist. However, Family Guy is one of the few that has given credit to The Simpsons as an inspiration. While there are many similiarties between the shows, Family Guy is hilarious and continues the traditions that The Simpsons set forth originally. Seth McFarlane is responsible for doing many of the voices on the show, including Peter and Stewie Griffin. Here is a video of him doing many of the voices:

And here is what Peter and Stewie would look like if they were real:

(again, click to expand)

There are many other examples of these and I'm sure I will post another grouping or two. In the meantime, here is a movie poster of what a live action Simpsons movie would look like along with a real life Simpsons opening intro.

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