Tuesday, January 19, 2010

What Casper the Friendly ghost taught me about ghosts

As a kid watching the Casper cartoons, I always assumed they were contemporary, but by the time I saw them, they were vintage already. It amazes me that this cartoon was embraced by America. The concepts of a friendly ghost and a friendly witch (Wendy) were way open-minded. Even though I lived in an actively haunted house, the concept of a ghost being a little mischief maker who’s lousy at scaring people and just wants some friends gave me an empathy for the presences that seemed to linger within the walls. It also gave me a concept of witches as embracing life and its elements to enhance healing and creating love and good fortune.

Can a cartoon in childhood really influence one? Hell ya! Other cartoons that impressed my tastes even as an adult were “The Jetsons.” New-gadgets entertain me greatly. I also appreciate mid century homes and retro vinyl diner booths and robots. What about “Scooby-Doo?” Well, it taught me about debunking as a ghost hunter in the future. There might be other explanations for a haunting (like a greedy butler). How about “Flintstones?” Okay, I’m purely female, it was Wilma’s chunky necklace that impressed me most. (I wasn't into brontosaurus ribs). “Johnny Quest” (my very favorite) made me adore digging up relics (good thing since I was doing it at Aspen Grove) and kind of made me have a super crush on guys in khakis and jeeps.

People say all the time that TV influences kids. As a kid, “Brady Bunch” was fun to watch but it didn’t affect any likes or dislikes in me. "Partridge Family" had me singing songs that later I would hate, but they didn't make me feel excitement about the future. I didn’t dream and wonder when I watched it.

Cartoons made me think there were no limits on life and what one could do. That the world was still magical. Yes, Casper definitely affected me and gave me a great relationship with very thing I’m hunting.

Bless his little transparent heart!


  1. I do love my Scooby Doo and thank Zak and the boys for bringing them to life, lol. Besides Josy and the Pussycats, I will always be a Looney Toone fan.....Bugs and the gang are #1 in my books.

  2. Looney Tunes are the best. I think those characters made quirky folks pretty cool.

  3. LOL, I spelled it "Toone" instead of "Tunes". I knew it looked funny. BTW, I emailed you about Saturday and our rainy weather.

  4. how cool is that, cartoons! i watched all of the shows as a kid as well! i totally liked Johnny Quest, but my favs, like Julie, are looney tunes, they are the best.

  5. I used to always read Casper comics at the piano teacher's house while waiting for my lesson. They were my favorite.

    I didn't get to see many cartoons as a kid because my parents were opposed to tv.

  6. Oh boy--I'd love to see the old comic form! I think it'd be better seeing it that way because it leaves more for the imagination.