CN Real was a short-lived programming block featuring live-action reality shows usually on Wednesdays and Saturdays that aired on Cartoon Network in June 17, 2009, promoted by rock musician Andrew W.K.. By early 2010, CN Real and its shows (with the exception of Dude, What Would Happen and Destroy Build Destroy) were prematurely cancelled for good due to the overwhelmingly negative receptions by critics and viewers for its place on Cartoon Network, a day before it's rebrand.
Shows That Aired on the Programming Block
- Dude, What Would Happen
- Destroy Build Destroy
- The Othersiders
- Bobb'e Says
- Survive This
Why It Sucked
- It had no place on a channel that's called Cartoon Network! That's like airing cooking shows on Animal Planet, soap operas on Comedy Central or pornography on channels for kids!
- Many of the shows were mostly bad, forgettable, mediocre, and very below average in the minds of many of the viewers.
- This was basically Cartoon Network's attempt at trying to copy the Disney and Nick formula in order to stay relevant.
- This is where Cartoon Network was at the height of its first dark age in the late 2000's, because they did not release any original animated programs that year despite the network's name and aired this instead, as well as the fact that many of the original animated programs and programming blocks (such as Toonami in 2008) were cancelled prematurely in favor of this and the live-action shows. The only original animated shows that were running during the time was Ben 10: Alien Force, Chowder, The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, and The Secret Saturdays, while Ed, Edd n Eddy, Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends, and Transformers: Animated had sadly ended that same year and the network only focused on Canadian cartoons, such as Johnny Test and Total Drama.
- This, along with Cartoon Network hosting mostly live-action shows at the time, was the main reason Craig McCracken of Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends and the original Powerpuff Girls and his wife Lauren Faust resigned from Cartoon Network for good after working there for 17 years. See the former's reaction of the block in the Reception section.
- Despite CN Real being cancelled for good in 2010, Cartoon Network still continued to air live-action shows, such as The High Fructose Adventures of Annoying Orange and Incredible Crew, up until 2014.
- Many of the block's shows like Dude, What Would Happen, Survive This, and The Othersiders were ripoffs of shows such as Survivor, Man vs. Wild, Ghost Hunters, Mythbusters, etc.
- One of the block's shows, Dude, What Would Happen, was not only a rip-off of Mythbusters, but it lacks the charm and scientific integrity Mythbusters has, as well as the fact that the show spits in the eyes of science just to appeal to dumb thrill-seekers. In fact, it actually felt more of a Jackass rip-off than anything.
- Following CN Real's cancellation in 2010 came the release of Adventure Time, Ben 10: Ultimate Alien, Generator Rex, Regular Show, Robotomy, and Sym-Bionic Titan, thus leading into the start of what's known as Cartoon Network's Renaissance era.
- After leaving Cartoon Network, Craig McCracken would eventually move on to create the hit Disney Channel series Wander Over Yonder, while Lauren Faust would create My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic.
- At least the title isn’t misleading.
- Some live-action shows are passable, and could've worked better if they were on another channel.
- Though 2009 may be considered Cartoon Network's darkest year, there were still some good moments during that year, such as the 10th Anniversary of the original Powerpuff Girls and the release of The Powerpuff Girls Rule!!! in honor of it and the series finales of Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends ("Goodbye to Bloo") and Ed, Edd n Eddy (Ed, Edd n Eddy's Big Picture Show).
CN Real was mostly negatively received by critics and viewers, including Cartoon Network fans, for its place on Cartoon Network and most of the shows received horrible ratings and views. However, Dude, What Would Happen and Destroy Build Destroy did receive high ratings despite the negative reception and they were the only CN Real shows that survived the block's cancellation and were renewed for additional seasons, both of them ended on September 21, 2011. Tim Surette, a user of TV.com, created a blog about the block with over 230 supporters. Craig McCracken, a former Cartoon Network employee and creator of Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends and the original Powerpuff Girls, was not happy about this and even stated to The Los Angeles Times in 2009, "It's a little sad. Cartoon Network 'had' something unique..."