As a child of pop culture, it should come as no little surprise that most of my psyche was formed by various cartoon and film studios and is tragically underequipped to manage real life, even to this day, which is why you can only find me on the Internet, as I tend to shun the sun like some kind of eyeless deep-cave newt.
While you can easily rely on film to teach you how to deal with everyday situations like terrorism, dinosaurs and hangovers, the sad truth is that the formation of one's sexual identity is probably something best not placed in the hands of Bruce Willis or National Lampoon. I mean, I think.
As it happens, my sexual awakening was a slow, shameful thing spurred by a handful of pop culture icons that, for one reason or another, stirred something vaguely confusing deep inside me, and will now be used to stir something vaguely off-putting in all of you.
#6. Minnie Mouse
I wouldn't start with this entry normally, save for the fact that I'm trying to work chronologically as best as my memory will allow. My memory is terrible, incidentally, something to do with hiding in plastic bags as a kid. But I do have one image, a flash burned into my brain, that comes with a vague sense of physical awareness of myself and where I was at the time, and how I felt. That image was Minnie Mouse, her back to me, looking over her shoulder and showing some mouse panties. It looked like she wanted it. Is that sick? That's probably sick. I'm going to be honest, I don't give a shit. What is Minnie, like 80 years old now? I'm normal, man. You're the one with the problem.
Oh Mickey, I got that junk in the trunk!
This was 1980s Minnie -- she was a little more haughty than today's Minnie, but also a little more lascivious. Just a touch. The difference between Britney Spears in the "Baby One More Time" video and Britney during that period before she went crazy when she looked like she'd probably do you if you could just find a way to make her stop crying for a few hours. Probably by giving her some ham salad. Chicks dig that.
I have no idea what the video or cartoon was in which this scene was located, though my brain tells me it was some kind of music video in which Minnie was singing to Mickey. But I remember that scene and I remember thinking "huh." Now in my adulthood, I'm just so disappointed in myself for knowing this happened to me, but that "huh" was a prepubescent precursor to it moving. Which is to say, it didn't move, but it was thinking about it. And it was thinking about it because I got a flash of animated mouse ass and a bit of a slutty mouse expression.
#5. The Boob Tree
I think I may have been 5 or 6 the first time I saw the movie The Last Unicorn, so none of this is my fault. As a kid, you're always mere inches away from Forrest Gumping into something amazing, or getting your head stuck in a banister. It's the luck of the draw, and your choices mean nothing because you're a kid and you suck. Anyway, look at this:
That's a scene in which the magician Schmendrick makes a tree come to life and it turns out to be rocking some F cups in which she encases the poor Jewish wizard. Being smothered by massive oak boobies seemed like an awesome idea to me when I was a kid, so this was always my favorite scene of the movie. Honestly, even now, the theory behind my love of this still seems sound. I would do this if I thought I could get away with it without anyone knowing. Plus, you know, I'd need wizard skills. And, in fairness, if I had wizard skills I could probably find any number of more satisfying ways to use them, but we're not here to poke holes in my shameful fantasies.
The thing about being a kid is that tree titties are appealing even if the tree itself seems to be the wooden version of Angela Lansbury, which should be enough to put anyone off no matter how busty it is, but whatever, I probably ate paint and stuff back then, too, what did I know?
I'm not insane, Cheetara was naked in the first episode of Thundercats, right? Look at this:
Not even a Thundernip.
But then what are those crotch lines? And where do new Thundercats come from if they have no Thunderjunk? And why was I still inexplicably attracted to Cheetara even though she had no female parts? Was it just the idea of her femininity? Her wily, sexy, feline femininity? Chicks who can kick your ass are hot, especially if they clean up afterward by licking their own crotch. I think. I certainly thought so back then. Like not explicitly -- I think it would be weird for a 7-year-old to be actively wishing to be sexually brutalized by an anthropomorphic cat lady -- but there was something there.
Most female characters in cartoons were vaguely useless even if they were heroes -- what the hell was She-Ra's deal? She had a voice like a tubal ligation, and I'm not even sure that means what I think it means, but it really doesn't matter because she sucked. She brought He-Man down.
Cheetara, on the other hand, was all leapy and fighty, and her voice was like a librarian who didn't give a shit about you. In retrospect, perhaps I'd been damaged by a female authority figure at some point, but in any event, for a cartoon cat lady, she had some nice curves.