For many of the students at IUP, a large part of growing up was sitting down in his/her living room to watch television, and for most, this was in the form of cartoons.
No three channels had more widely loved children’s shows then that of the “big three:” “Disney Channel,” “Nickelodeon” and “Cartoon Network.” These three channels dominated the airwaves and played major roles in influencing their viewers and the television, entertainment and animation industries.
Some kids had favorite channels and shows growing up, which turn into debates or discussions in adulthood.
Violet Hayes (freshman, speech pathology) remembers growing up as primarily a “Disney Channel” fan. Her reason for Disney loyalty is that it “had the least amount of shows I didn’t like.”
"The other channels, ‘Cartoon Network’ and ‘Nick,’ had things that I wanted to skip or avoid, while I could watch almost anything on Disney,” she said.
She said she also has fond early childhood memories of “Disney Junior," “Disney Channel’s” sub-channel for even younger audiences, assisting her position as a “Disney kid.”
Her favorite shows on Disney were “Good Luck Charlie,” “Hannah Montana” and “Suite Life of Zack and Cody,” with her favorite show overall being the “Suite Life of Zack and Cody.”
Hayes, however, also enjoyed watching shows on “Nickeloden,” such as “Mighty B,” “SpongeBob Squarepants,” “Fairly Odd Parents,” “CatDog” and “Jimmy Neutron” and “Cartoon Network,” including “The Misadventures of Flapjack,” “Chowder,” “Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends,” among more. But she remembers disliking the cult-classic series, “Adventure Time.”
Her favorite cartoon, as opposed to her favorite show, was “The Fairly OddParents,” because it was “funny and entertaining.”
While she watched them, Hayes claims she “wasn’t really a cartoon person.”
“I watched them, yes, but I preferred live-action shows usually,” Hayes said.
Hayes and other students, such as Allyson Donnely (junior, nursing), had fond memories of a fourth channel, the affordable and family friendly PBS Kids, the Public Broadcasting Service’s child-focused block.
Donnely said she remembers loving “Arthur” especially, but also remembers “Zoboomafoo” and “Fetch with Ruff Ruffman,” while Hayes loved watching “Clifford” as a child. According to all three students, the reason that they all have strong memories of PBS Kids, despite the other channels’ higher popularity and success, is in part the safer and more educational nature of PBS Kids, which let it cater to young children and older kids alike. It was available to watch even in times and situations without cable.