Toon in Anglo-Saxon or Old English is the original English word for Town [] . In the north east of England, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Toon is used by geordies as an abbreviation for "town" as in- haway lets gan to the toon (come on lets go the town). Toon army is a chant used by Newcastle fans for local football team Newcastle United FC, nicknamed the 'Toon Army.'

Toon is an abbreviation of "cartoon", probably popularized by the name of the "Looney Tunes" series of animated shorts by Warner Brothers (though the spelling is different). It became a popular way to refer to a cartoon character in the 1981 Gary K. Wolf novel "Who Censored Roger Rabbit?" and its film adaptation "Who Framed Roger Rabbit". These two works created and established the Toon Noir sub-genre, which features toons and non-toon humans living together, each playing by their own set of physics. The small sub-genre also includes Disney's "Raw Toonage", "Bonkers", and "House of Mouse" and Warner Brothers' "Tiny Toon Adventures", "Animaniacs", and "Freakazoid!" cartoon series, and more recently, the films "Cool World" (1992) (where Toons are called "Doodles"), "Space Jam" (1996), "The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle" (2000), and "" (2003), and also the video games "Go! Go! Hypergrind", "Toonstruck", and the MMORPG "Toontown Online".

Toon is often used by animation fans (mainly from the English speaking world) to distinguish characters from those in Japanese anime, even if the latter features comedic funny animal type characters (e.g., Doraemon). The English fandom jargon 'hentai' also typically excludes toons.

There is also a type of monster card from the card game Yu-Gi-Oh! that is called "toon", such as Blue-Eyes Toon Dragon. These cards show monsters in the exaggerated style that is usual for toons.

'Toon' is also a terminology used by players of massively multiplayer online role playing games (MMORPG) to describe ones character or avatar within the game. The term is believed to be used again as a shortened form of cartoon, used as the character in the game is often an animated representation of themselves, or a 'cartoon' version. This is despite the fact that the term 'avatar,' a more literally accurate term, had already been in widespread use before 'toon' rose to prevalence.

Common features of toons

* An exaggerated, usually anthropomorphic appearance based on some realistic animal or object. Plus a grossly caricatured appearance, if human ("South Park", "The Simpsons")
* An innate sense of comedic timing ("Bonkers")
* An intense focus on a single-minded goal, such as hunting (Elmer Fudd), catching prey (Sylvester the Cat, Wiley E. Coyote, Humphrey the Bear, Tom of Tom & Jerry), wanting something that they don't have (Bloo), or capturing the object of one's romantic feelings (Pepé Le Pew, Johnny Bravo), generally with comedic results.
* A usual disregard for the physical laws that govern our Universe (and a reciprocal disregard of those laws for them)
* An almost complete immunity to any serious injury (being crushed, shot, decapitated, burned, etc.). This is especially seen in Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner, Tom and Jerry, and SpongeBob SquarePants. "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" exploits this common feature by making its toon characters explicitly nearly indestructible.
*Comic strips are produced by photographing Toon characters. Comic book Toon characters (Garfield, Calvin and Hobbes) speak in word balloons which appear above their heads as they talk.
*Can never age (most primary examples of this are Bart Simpson, Lisa Simpson and Maggie Simpson). Many theatrical shorts have characters in both present day and moments of history, and in both examples they don't appear to have ages.
*Some Toons are CGI (Buzz Lightyear, Shrek) and are called "Digital Toons", or "Digis" for short.

ee also

* Animated cartoon
* Toontown
* Doodle

External links

* [ Toonopedia entry on "Toons"]

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