Top 10 Types of Cartoon Logic That Make No Sense

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Top 10 Types of Cartoon Logic That Make No Sense

VOICE OVER: Phoebe de Jeu
We get that animation has its own rules, but we still can't get over these types of cartoon logic that don't make any sense. We'll be examining the “laws” of cartoon physics, biology, anatomy, and other conventions that are fundamentally at odds with reality as we know it. Screwy, ain't it? MsMojo ranks the types of cartoon logic that don't make any sense. What type of cartoon logic do you find the most inexplicable? Let us know in the comments!
Transcript
Screwy, ain’t it? Welcome to MsMojo and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the top 10 types of cartoon logic that don’t make any sense.

For this list, we’ll be examining the “laws” of cartoon physics, biology, anatomy, and other conventions that are fundamentally at odds with reality as we know it.

#10: Anything Can Seemingly Be Swallowed Whole


Chewing tends to be a foreign concept to a lot of cartoon characters. Instead of gnashing or tearing up food with their teeth as people are wont to do when eating, many toons simply down it all in one bite. This often results in the character’s necks, heads, or stomachs expanding into the shape of the swallowed food (or other item). While this might be somewhat believable if every character was somehow part snake, most don’t even have half python or a quarter rattlesnake ancestry - so it’s a little hard to swallow this particular convention.

#9: Running Through Something Leaves an Outline


It’s not always easy to know where a cartoon character is going, but it’s often pretty easy to know where one’s been - especially if they left in a hurry. Inhabitants of animated worlds often possess the ability to pass through walls, doors, and other solid objects with little resistance and will frequently leave behind a hole shaped like their body’s profile. In real life, breaking through things is rarely as easy or painless. Toons don’t always pass through solid surfaces with consistent ease however, judging by the efforts of Wile E. Coyote and his painted tunnel illusions.

#8: Pulling Items from Out of Nowhere [aka Hammerspace]


Cartoons always seem to have whatever they need close at hand, don’t they? Many animated characters will simply pull whatever object they need out from behind their back or from their pockets; often despite the inability for the item in question to actually fit wherever they pulled it from. The theoretical, extradimensional pocket from which they draw these things is nicknamed hammerspace, after one of the more common objects pulled out in this manner. While it may not make sense, it’s mostly driven by narrative convenience and the rule of funny.

#7: Electric Shocks Cause X-Ray Results


Electricity doesn’t work that way! In the real world, electric shocks can cause your hair to stand on end, sure, or even give you electrical burns from the contact point. When someone is electrocuted in a cartoon however, more often than not, an outline of their entire skeleton becomes visible. X-rays are generated by complex machinery and, although powered by electricity, the connection between the two is tenuous at best. Mostly, it’s a way of making the shock more visually interesting and entertaining, but we’re guessing that it can make a trip to the cartoon doctor a rather painful experience too!

#6: Head Injuries Can Be Reversed with a Shake of the Head


In reality, a blow to the head can be serious business, but in cartoons it’s usually played for laughs. In some cases, it will result in disorientation and dizziness, which are often accompanied by the image of tweeting birds, stars, or other hallucinations. Luckily for the toons however, these can usually be dispelled with a simple shake of the head - an action that’s very inadvisable in real life. Other times, the afflicted character will sprout a large lump from its head, and while swelling is often a part of head injuries, it’s rarely so pronounced in real life; nor should you attempt to push anything back in, as so many cartoons are somehow able to do.

#5: Body Parts Can Take Different Shapes Without Serious Injury


Real human bodies are generally pretty rigid and not prone to being malleable, with some minor exceptions. Cartoon bodies, by contrast, are as flexible as they need to be though, limited by nothing but the animators’ imaginations. Characters can extend, contract, and inflate just about all their body parts at will, depending on the cartoon and what they need to do - although the meta-goal is usually to be as laugh-enticing as possible. These different shapes can range anywhere from simple extensions of the characters’ limbs’ existing forms to the outright bizarre, such as being squished flat, and the body becoming like an accordion.

#4: Characters Can Never Die


The most powerful immortals in other forms of fiction ain’t got nothing on cartoon characters. As we’ve already seen, toon bodies can handle some pretty serious punishment – and apparently absolutely none of it will have a lethal effect. Animated characters can be shot, stabbed, blown up, fall off cliffs, electrocuted, even chopped up into a million little pieces, and still be fine in the next scene - the writers willing. Many cartoons involve slapstick, and one of slapstick’s cornerstones is that it’s funny when someone gets injured. Cartoons allow that sentiment to be taken up to eleven, making the results hilarious, even if they are impossible.

#3: Gravity Has a Delayed Effect


Like a lot of things in cartoons, gravity doesn’t work like it does in the real world. Characters can remain in the air for far longer than should be possible. Sometimes it’s because they’ve leapt up in surprise or in pain, in which case the added airtime helps emphasize whichever emotion they’re experiencing. The most common case though is when someone goes over the side of a ledge or cliff and doesn’t fall until they’ve realized where they are - or else they’re able to pause and react to their situation before gravity catches up with them. This is definitely one you don’t want to try at home!

#2: Characters Never Age


Not only do cartoon people and animals never die, they rarely seem to get any older. Many characters still look the same and are the same age now as they were when first put on screen. Some series feature static time, meaning that the characters are always the same age because time never progresses, which makes the material more approachable to casual viewers. Another real world reason is that ageless characters are easier to animate. Drawing characters that’ve gotten a few more wrinkles, taller, or fatter is just more difficult than maintaining a standard model to go off of. Cartoons are a timeless form of entertainment anyway, so why not populate them with characters to match?

Before we get to our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:

Bombs Don’t Kill You

Intelligence Is Inversely Proportional to Body Size

Characters Can Breathe in Space

#1: Characters Never Change Their Clothes


The wardrobes of cartoon characters must just be a sea of the same few items, or else they must spend their off-screen time laundering that one outfit. Much like the characters never aging, the reasoning behind characters favoring a particular outfit is primarily for the ease of animating them year after year. Creating a new outfit every single episode simply isn’t feasible for a lot of animators. In addition, a signature wardrobe helps the character remain recognizable and cement them in viewers’ minds, much like superheroes. Cartoon characters don’t have to change, and they often don’t, but that’s part of what makes them so memorable.
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I can name a number of cartoons that do number 9 tom and jerry, ed add n eddy ,Scooby doo, dexter's laboratory and probably spongebob