‘Tom & Jerry’ no longer smoking icons (but aunty still is)

I know that I breathed a huge sigh of relief this weekend. Phew. My kids have lost their last icons of bad behavior! I thought. Tom and Jerry, that eponymous animated cat and mouse duo, are destined never to smoke again.

Yes! It is sarcasm. Boomerang has chosen to selectively edit the cartoon episodes where smoking in Tom & Jerry is seen as “condoned, acceptable or glamorized,” according to the BBC. Turner Broadcasting, which airs Boomerang in the U.S., is considering following suit. Not up for review? The bonking with a frying pan, the falling out a second-story window, none of these are seen as dangerous. But the cat, when it’s smoking a cigar while playing tennis, now that’s a bad example.

As a commentator on BBC World Service last night said, there’s a lot more disturbing on TV. He was more concerned about the plethora of ED ads, while I’m highly uncomfortable that my 15-month-old will stop breastfeeding to watch those pipe people plug bladder control drugs. Do you think cartoon creatures from the 1950s are influencing your children’s propensity for addiction; or is it (like in my family) much more of a problem that the beloved Aunt Erin can’t give up the nicotine habit?

Author by Sarah Gilbert