Toonami returned, if only for April Fool's Day
3:00 PM on 04.02.2012 // Bob Muir
On March 31, it seemed like Cartoon Network's Adult Swim was going to keep to its tradition of airing The Room to celebrate April Fool's Day. And then, just as the film's title was about to show up, the movie was revealed to be a video being watched by Toonami's iconic host T.O.M. Yes, Toonami was back on TV, even if it was only for one night.
After airing the latest episode of Bleach (normally aired at that time on Adult Swim), Toonami launched into a night of classic Toonami shows and even a few favorites not normally seen on the block: Dragon Ball Z, Gundam Wing, Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki, Outlaw Star, Big O, Yu Yu Hakusho, Blue Submarine No. 6, Trigun, Astro Boy, and Gigantor. All the while, viewers got to experience updates of the classic Toonami bumps, new anime promos narrated by T.O.M., and even a new review of the recently-released Mass Effect 3. It was just like the good old days.
Of course, all good things must end, and Adult Swim resumed normal operations the next night. But for those of us who grew up with Toonami and fell in love with anime because of the shows it exposed us to, this was an extraordinary gesture from Cartoon Network. I still remember the days when they were acquiring lots of popular anime, yet seemed to be bracing themselves for the inevitable anime downsizing by openly joking on Adult Swim about low ratings for such great shows.
There is some talk about whether this one night could lead to a Toonami revival, and T.O.M.'s voice actor Steven Blum is asking fans to give Cartoon Network positive feedback to help bring it back. (If you want to add your two cents, go here and choose Programming, then Toonami.) As much as I'd love to see the block return, I would only be interested if it were able to reach the heights that the block used to hit. The declining viewership was partly due to the latter programming, after all. Whatever comes of it, seeing T.O.M. guide us through the anime I grew up on brought a smile to my face, and for that, I'm grateful.
The surprise opening is after the credits, if you want to get your nostalgia on.
[Thanks, Jericho!] Setup email comments
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