Cartoon All Stars to the Rescue : from public service announcement to program-length commercial Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/0v838485g

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  • Animation has long been a staple of children's television programming As public service announcements (PSA5) have become an important part of children's television programming, cartoon characters have started to appear in this form of nonprogram material. By standard definition, PSAs are usually a 15 to 60-second spot that promote education and awareness on various social issues such as substance abuse. In 1990 all four television networks aired an extended version of a PSA. Cartoon All Stars to the Rescue was a 30-minute animated program featuring many popular cartoon characters of that time, such as Tigger and Garfield. Produced with the cooperation of 12 animation studios, the program warned children of the dangers of drug abuse and aired commercial-free one Saturday morning, simultaneously on ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX. This was a significant event in the history of children's television programming. The participation of 12 animation studios and the fact that all four networks agreed to run an educational program without commercials makes this an historic event in popular culture. This thesis will examine Cartoon All Stars to the Rescue and remark on its content and effectiveness. Questions addressed will include why the studios and networks chose animation to promote the concept of drug awareness. Also, using Kenneth Burke's dramatistic pentad methodology, this thesis will explore the potential for competing motives when the line between PSA and marketability gets blurred.
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