You’re supposed to do your homework, but mom keeps telling you about chores that still have to be done. You try to pull yourself away, but you find that you’re drawn back in front of an old CRT television set by the alluring alliteration of a word sung in acapella… “Nick Nick Nick Nick N-Nick Niiiiick Nick, Nickelodeon.”
This is a memory I’m sure more than a few people share. Well, that might just happen again in our current century. Nicktoons from the ‘90s are coming back on a new network, The Splat, and it might just be what Nickelodeon needs to make millennials fall in love with them again.
For animation fans, for those looking to introduce younger family members to classic cartoons and for stoners alike, this is notable news.
It’ll be fun to be able to watch the likes of “The Wild Thornberrys,” “Aaahh!!! Real Monsters” and “Hey Arnold” again. That much is true, but when will the novelty wear off? Will it be a worthwhile investment for Nickelodeon? Sure, I might throw it on once or twice a week when I’m unwinding, but then I’ll go back to the internet for whatever else I want to watch.
Last week, Reed Hastings, the CEO of Netflix, said in an interview with Jim Cramer of Mad Money that within the next 10 to 20 years, all TV will be on the internet. It’s hard to argue with him given that Netflix reported over 3.3 million new subscribers at the end of the quarter in July according to The Verge and dominates bandwidth usage in the US, using 37 percent of total bandwidth at peak hours, according to Variety.
So what is it that Nickelodeon should do, given the metrics of the industry today? I think a good plan might be to follow in the footsteps of Adult Swim: air classic Nicktoons in combination with original programming in the vein of “Rick and Morty” and the marijuana-fueled classic “Aqua Teen Hunger Force.”
It would be a great opportunity for Nick to break further into the market of adult animation, which is becoming more and more popular and mainstream since the popular animated show “Archer” began airing in 2009.
For Viacom, reintroducing Nickelodeon into the mindset of the 18-35 year old demographic would give the company even more brand value and make its streaming rights a cause of combat between the streaming giants.
Personally as a fan of animation, I would love to see Nick take advantage of this new opportunity and provide and new creative platform for animators to have its content seen by millions of tweens, teens and adults alike. Details on The Splat have been far and few inbetween and have focused on the distribution of older cartoons. But if Nick plays its cards right, it just might be able to turn The Splat into a much bigger move for the network than dated animation from last century, as beloved as it is by so many including myself, would allow.
There is potential here for something big, so let us see what kind of a splat Nick can make as it tries to woo a generation that outgrew it long ago.