As we grow older, it becomes harder and harder to look at the thrills and joys of our childhood without considerable embarrassment. Frequently, we ignore the lollypop-bright simplicity of those old cartoons and video games, choosing instead darker, more serious works that respond to our matured tastes. While it can be fun to imagine those cartoons out of their depth in the modern world, there is an unspoken desire to have it both ways. Can’t the characters used to we love exist within the more brutal, mature entertainment we now crave?
According to French artist Sylvain Sarrailh, it is possible to have your cake and frag it, too. His series “Badass Cartoons,” slams together such disparate concepts as Astro Boy and Iron Man, Mario and Akira, Pac-Man and The Thing, and in a staggering example of the elegance of simplicity, Winne the Pooh and a huge freakin’ bear.
What’s remarkable is how much of the original characters remains after Sarrailh has, say, turned Scrooge Mc Duck and his nephews into bank robbers. While Sarrailh has reimagined these cartoons for a more adult world, he hasn’t lost the brightly-colored charm that made them appealing. Sarrailh’s Tintin may have a mohawk and a Kalashnikov, but he’s still a boy adventurer, ready to take on the mysteries of the world. He’s just a bit more badass about it.