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“It Hurts”: Internet Reacts as ‘RIP Cartoon Network’ Trends Online

Cartoon Network became the first 24-hour cable channel to specialize in animation when it debuted on October 1, 1992. Now, 32 years later, #RIPCartoonNetwork is trending on X (formerly Twitter). The trend began when an X account called Animation Workers Ignited posted an animation declaring that “Cartoon Network is essentially dead.” The report also claimed that other animation companies are encountering similar issues, particularly due to industry cutbacks. For both viewers and fans of cartoons, the news of the channel’s closure is unexpected and shocking. However, the creators have not made any official comment on this.

The animation stated, “Cartoon Network is essentially dead and other big animation studios are not far behind. What happened to all the animation workers?” The video continued, saying that despite working in the business during the pandemic, a record number of people are unemployed, with some being without a job for more than a year.

When COVID initially struck, animation was one of the few entertainment mediums that could continue to produce work without interruption since it could be done entirely remotely. However, as the video claims, studios paid them back by abandoning projects, contracting out work, and firing artists in large numbers. The video blamed these problems on greed, saying that big studios boosted their finances by lowering expenses and staffing down.

Fans were encouraged to use the hashtag #RIPCartoonNetwork when tweeting their beloved Cartoon Network episodes and to follow the account for further ways to help the cause. The clip has garnered 5 million views so far. In the comments section, users started posting short clips from their favorite episodes.

Posting a clip, one user commented, “Courage The Cowardly Dog will always be a favorite! It’s very sad to hear that the animators were treated so poorly and hopefully they can find work soon!”

As the hashtag gained popularity, speculations spread that Cartoon Network was closing forever. But these assertions are untrue. It is important to note that the animators’ union’s account, Animation Workers Ignited, is highlighting the struggles experienced by industry workers by using the hashtag #RIPCartoonNetwork.

There is no shutdown of the channel itself. In 2022, Cartoon Network Studios and Warner Bros. Discovery merged to streamline their organizational structure. Consequently, the development and primary production teams were supposed to collaborate, Vulture cited an internal document.

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