Initially, the channel would broadcast cartoons 24 hours a day.
Most of the short cartoons were aired in half-hour or hour-long packages, usually separated by character or studio – Down Wit' Droopy D aired old Droopy Dog shorts, The Tom and Jerry Show presented the classic cat-and-mouse team, and Bugs and Daffy Tonight provided classic Looney Tunes shorts.
cartoons (the pre-1948 Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies), the 1933–1957 Popeye cartoons, MGM cartoons, and Hanna-Barbera cartoons.
From its launch until 1995, the network's announcers said the network's name with the word "The" added before "Cartoon Network", thus calling the network "The Cartoon Network".
Initial programming on the channel consisted exclusively of reruns of classic Warner Bros.
Late Night Black and White showed early black-and-white cartoons (mostly from the Fleischer Studios and Walter Lantz cartoons from the 1930s, as well as black-and-white Merrie Melodies and MGM cartoons), and Toon Heads would show three shorts with a similar theme and provide trivia about the cartoons.
There was also an afternoon cartoon block called High Noon Toons, which was hosted by cowboy hand puppets (an example of the simplicity and imagination the network had in its early years).
It is primarily aimed at children and young teenagers between the ages of 7 to 15, and targets older teens and adults with mature content during its late night daypart Adult Swim, which is treated as a separate entity for promotional purposes and as a separate channel by Nielsen for ratings purposes. A Spanish language audio track for select programs is accessible via second audio programing (SAP); some cable and satellite companies offer the Spanish feed as a separate channel by removing the main English-language audio track.
It is also the related channel of Turner-owned Boomerang.