And I even got a laugh out of watching it, too. Now I learn that the creator, John Kricfalusi, was a sick, manipulative pedophile. He actually groomed a couple of young fans, encouraging them to be animators, then brought them out to work with him, and at least one of them, he had live with him. He seemed to regard young girls and women as his trophies.
Sometime between 1998 and 2000, Mora went to a party at Kricfalusi’s house that has bothered him for years. He remembered Byrd, who was no older than 20, was drunk and seemed to be drifting in and out of consciousness when Kricfalusi called Mora over to him. “And then he pulled out these Polaroids of Robyn basically — how can you say it? — going down on him. … He’s like, ‘What do you think of that?’”
Byrd doesn’t remember Kricfalusi taking explicit photos of her; she also wasn’t aware, she said, that he showed explicit photos of her to other people. But Wyatt recounted an interaction with his then-boss that was similar to Mora’s. He said that at a party at Kricfalusi’s house between 1999 and 2002, Kricfalusi showed him “a stack of Polaroids” of Kricfalusi and Byrd having sex. He never mentioned the photographs to Byrd, nor did he confront Kricfalusi about the interaction. During another party at Kricfalusi’s house, Swarr said the artist pulled out a binder of photos that showed Byrd naked in his pool. “It was gross,” Swarr said. Affecting a gruff voice when he spoke as Kricfalusi, Swarr recalled, “He was like, ‘Oh, you like that?’ I was like, ‘No!’”
He encouraged this relationship when he was in his late 30s and 40s, when when the girl was 13 or 14.
It’s distressing that he was surrounded in his working relationship with this team of animators, and they knew he was carrying on with these teenage girls, and he was bragging about the sexual nature of the relationship (which would not be OK, even if they were his age), and no one spoke out. No one brought this to the attention of authorities. He was making cartoons for a children’s network, and no one thought this was important enough to mention anywhere.
His lawyer has made a statement now, though.
The 1990s were a time of mental and emotional fragility for Mr. Kricfalusi, especially after losing Ren and Stimpy, his most prized creation. For a brief time, 25 years ago, he had a 16-year-old girlfriend. Over the years John struggled with what were eventually diagnosed mental illnesses in 2008. To that point, for nearly three decades he had relied primarily on alcohol to self-medicate. Since that time he has worked feverishly on his mental health issues, and has been successful in stabilizing his life over the last decade. This achievement has allowed John the opportunity to grow and mature in ways he’d never had a chance at before.
I guess we’re supposed to feel sorry for him.