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Cartoon Inspirations

Perth 1994

I close my eyes.

The force of the wind brushes against my face aggressively as I sprint across the playground. I’m moving at the speed of sound, and my arms are flung back, because of the ferocious velocity. Near approaching the border fencing of the playground I take a sharp left just as I’m about to slam into the wiring and skip over the roots of the large tree. Behind me, is my companion Tails, hovering from the sky, trying to keep up at my pace.

I catch my breath, while he approaches me slowly.

“What a slowpoke, keep up.” I cheekily remark.

In a split second I’m off again, entering the dangerous sand pit where Dr. Robotnik’s lair is disguised as a playground.

“The only way in to his lair is through that tunnel!” Shouts Tails from above.

I squat down and wrap my legs, and spin head forward on the spot swiftly, charging the energy to thrust forward through the tunnel. I call it the ‘spin ball’, As the sheer speed that I’m spinning, creates an aura of blue, which to the naked eye looks like a spinning ball. I roll rapidly through the tunnel , and bounce up to the monkey bars and climb across the lava river, when, I see Dr. Robotnik infront of me in his half- egged shaped hovercraft.

“Your too slow Hedgehog, now you die!” He claims while he flies off maniacally laughing.

The ground rumbles, and explosives blow up the walls, The playground was crumbling down fast, and I had to get out there pronto. My feet clench in my bright red sneakers, I take a deep breath, and accelerate as fast as I could through the collapsing structure. As I reach the end of the sand pit, and I hit the brakes hard just at the edge. I look down, it was at least a hundred feet drop.

Suddenly, from a distance an orange figure approaches, a helicopter speeding like a jet, as it comes closer I knew I was safe. A grin of relief, I bend over and brush the dust of my sneakers.

“Grab my hands Sonic!” Tails shouts.

“What If I don’t want to?” I joke, “I kind of like it here!”

“This is not the time to kid!”

I grin loudly and let out a laugh, as i jump off the ledge and grip on to his hands, We see Dr Robotnik in the distance.

It’s payback time.

My Childhood.

Imaginations run wild when your six years old. My infatuation with the video game and cartoon character Sonic the Hedgehog ran deep into my playtime away from my Sega Megadrive. Every day at Wesley College you could see a small, skinny Malay boy with his lanky, white friend sprint aimlessly around the Junior school playground, lost in our own reality where we were in Chaos Island, fighting Dr Robotnik from his evil plans to turn the woodland creatures into robots.

Reminisce back and remember a time when you drifted off into your own reality, where it brought you to exciting places and let you escape the boring, sobriety of the real world – Wasn’t being a kid great?

I believe Cartoon Characters are role models. They provide an inspiration to what we are today. They shape our personalities, and develop the way we think and act. Although subconsciously, they are a social factor in shaping what you are today.

Remember  when Doraemon or Dragon Ball Z was on TV? Where you sit intently and religiously on mornings before you head off to school. Or the comic books that you have read, where from young, they teach you wise lessons in life.

The value of Power (Spiderman), Comradere (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), Feminism (Jem, Wonder woman), and even lessons in adulthood and dating:

Archie Andrew you playa.

Its amazing how a cartoon character can push so much influence in your life and personality. My first hero, Sonic the Hedgehog inspired me to live life in the fast lane, to take risks, and to act towards what is right. (He even inspired me to join the athletics team in school.)

However, the definition of my personality I can relate to Archie Andrews.

An Average Joe, with average attributes. However, his personality of being such a nice guy gets him along with everyone in Riverdale. His clueless attitude in relationships gets him in trouble, but his goodhearted nature gets him out of it. Archie has even inspired me to take the career path I choose to lead now, which is Journalism.

There’s one story I vividly remember reading when I was nine years old:

Archie and Reggie are on Summer holidays and get hired by the Riverdale Gazette, where Reggie’s dad is the editor. He puts them on assignment to find whatever story they like. Reggie heads straight off to the beach, knowing his power as a reporter allows him to interview hot babes. Archie is left clueless as always, and heads off to his neighborhood to find a story. What he finds is a large, cement truck parked in a driveway where he sees a couple of workers re-tarring the driveway. He interviews a worker and he responds:

“McGurk has us doing new driveways for his friends, pretty lucky people to be friends with such authority”

Archie scribbles down in his notepad, stuck in naivety to what he’s finding out. He goes an interview the residents of the neighborhood, and they reply in negativity.

“They’ve been doing this all week, all our tax money servicing all his friend’s driveways!”

Writing down his draft in his notepad, Archie is still left clueless.

“Well, not much here, just people doing normal work, maybe its a story.” He ponders.

As he returns back to editorial, Reggie’s dad is left disappointed at Reggie’s story ‘Blondes and Brunettes: What’s your summer flavour?”.

“We could use this as a filler, I suppose” He says, “Archie what have you got?”

He hands in his piece, as Reggie’s dad reads his story, his expression changes to shock, seeing that Archie had uncovered that Senator Mcgurk had been using taxpayers money to build new driveways for his friends.

“This his hot stuff! STOP THE PRESSES!” He shouts!

The next day, Archie’s parents are reading the paper exasperated and shocked by the frontpage headlines.

“Mcgurk’s a Rat” Archie’s dad exclaims

“Did you read the Byline?” Archie smirks,

His mom and Dad look at the small font,

” BY ARCHIE ANDREWS!” they shout!

I have sadly lost this issue. However, it has remained in my brain till now as it has made such an impact in my life. The comic showed me the excitement of reporting, and the pride you get when seeing your works published, which inspired me to do what I like to do, which is writing. And this is when I was nine years old mind you.

So I conclude,

Take a moment of Reflection.

Look at your childhood, and which Cartoons entertained you

Have changed you,

Inspired you.

And made you who are today.

Look at yourself,

Which cartoon character represents you?

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About Ariff Azmi

Founder of shriekingmonkeys - My interests span from quirky culture to anything that dares to amuse my highly-desensitized nature.

One response to “Cartoon Inspirations

  1. Jungle Man ⋅

    Beavis of Beavis and Butthead – The man popularised the universal comrade greeting “dude” which subsequently ended the cold war. Rocked and saved the world. What a legend.

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