February 15, 2016
In mid-November the news got out that Gravity Falls, the Disney cartoon about twins exploring the mysteries of a small Oregon town, would have one more episode before ending. I, along with many others, was heartbroken.
I wouldn’t say I’m a huge animation fan, but I certainly watch more children’s shows than most “normal” twenty-somethings watch. Of course I watched cartoons as a kid–and continued to enjoy them through high school and college. As much as I hate to admit it, I’m also one of those people who tends to glamorize the past. “Nothing is as good as Johnny Bravo was at its best,” “Dexter’s Lab is so much better than cartoons today,” etc. I try not to, but I can’t help it. So admitting that Gravity Falls is my favorite cartoon ever is no small thing.
I love GF because it’s hilarious. It has wonderful characters. It isn’t afraid to defy expectations (like making fun of the nineties!!). It has genuinely touching, emotional moments. It’s also legitimately intriguing.
Oh, and Matt Chapman of HomestarRunner.com is a writer. My love for Homestar has never waned and the same humor shines through in lines like these:
So I’m very sad to hear that Gravity Falls is going away.
But that doesn’t mean I’m not okay with it.
You see, Alex Hirsch, the show’s creator, has decided to stop the show. He wrote openly about his decision in his tumblr (man knows his audience):
But Gravity Falls was never meant to be a series that goes on and on forever. It’s meant to be an exploration of the experience of summer, and in a larger sense a story about childhood itself. The fact that childhood ends is exactly what makes it so precious- and why you should cherish it while it lasts.
I’ll admit, I get slightly teary-eyed when I read that.
It’s wonderful that he can draw these parallels with his show. Childhood and its fleeting nature is a common theme in the show. To be able to say, “See? The show is your life,” kind of blows my mind.
But Hirsch says something else that stands out, “There are so many shows that go on endlessly until they lose their original spark…”
That’s the real reason I’m okay with GF ending.
Gravity Falls has been consistently amazing. I’m not in the least bit worried that it’s losing its spark. Which is why it’s better for it to end now. I’ve had some beloved shows go on for far too long. (Stargate SG-1, I’m looking at you.) To get to the point where you almost dread watching the latest episode of your “favorite” show because it will probably be a disappointment is really sad.
While I would love to see Gravity Falls go for at least one more season (I want to see more of Melody!), I respect Hirsch’s decision. If he feels concerned that he can’t continue to meet the high standards he’s set, then he has my permission to stop.
Not that he needs it.