Friday, January 11, 2019

The Under-‘Doug’: The Story of Nickelodeon’s Enduring Cartoon

The under-‘Doug’: the story of Nickelodeon’s enduring cartoon

Doug Funnie and Porkchop. Credit: Nickelodeon

“Dear Journal ... Hi, it’s me, Doug.”

For kids growing up in the 1990s, Nickelodeon’s Doug was the animated show that represented all the anxieties of adolescent life. Unlike the flashy, more bombastic cartoons of the era, Doug focused on an imaginative 11-year-old kid dealing with everyday problems.

“Patti, you’re the Mayonnaise for me.” Credit: Courtesy of Nickelodeon.

The show was created by cartoonist Jim Jinkins, who gave the show a distinctly quirky look, a minimalist sound and a strong moral center. “If you were a film theorist you would call this the auteur-driven cartoon,” says Linda Simensky, who worked in Nickelodeon’s animation department at the time.

“Doug” character designs from the show’s production bible. Credit: Jim Jinkins.

In this oral history by Studio 360, the staff behind the scenes — Jinkins, Fred Newman (actor/composer), Yvette Kaplan (animation director), Ken Scarborough (head writer), Kenneth Lonergan (writer) and Constance Shulman (actor) — talk about creating the show, its most controversial episode and the show’s enduring legacy. And comedian Wes Hazard and other fans reflect on the impact that Doug had on them growing up.

Listen to this episode of Studio 360 by clicking play on the audio player below:

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More Nick: Episode 8: Jim Jinkins | Nickelodeon Animation Podcast!

Original source: PRI; Additional source: Slate.
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