The Slums of Elwood is a "Most Peculiar" message board where dorky teens and weird adults chat about the long-running PBS cartoon Arthur. With lax moderation and a focus on "strange and disturbing Arthur-related topics and fan creations," it aims to be to the show's fandom what Weird Twitter is to Regular Twitter. The details are a bit sketchy, but apparently it was formed in the wake of an earlier Arthur board's implosion, partially due to some drama over the concept of a certain tertiary character removing his hat. Sounds like the Arthur fandom was pretty damn weird to begin with.

Like any cartoon forum, The Slums of Elwood offers plenty of nit-picking over minor errors, grumbling about alleged network mishandling of the show, and dumb games. There's also some provocative analysis, ranging from a nine-page discussion about whether tomboyish monkey girl Francine is lesbian to WWII analogies ("As promised, here's my semi-serious, semi-crackpot theory about Draw! being a thinly-veiled allegory for World War II and Nazi persecution of the Jews"), as well as theories about which Meyers-Briggs personality types fit each character. Oh ho ho, Buster is such an ENFP!

What is it about Arthur that inspires such devotion? "A Lotta Moms" explains one aspect of its appeal:

It's interesting, the whole concept of the children/town that never grows up while the world around it evolves and passes normally through time reminds me of my relationship with the show and the place it has in my head.

Arthur is really the only children's show I watch and consider myself a serious fan of. As I'd imagine for most of us here who are grown adults, it's as if Arthur and Elwood City exist to me unchanged, representing that little part of my childhood that remains constant as I grow and change with the world around me.

It's a surprisingly poignant post in a thread that's mostly about admiring 8-year-old Muffy's ass.

Some especially "peculiar" Arthur stuff happens in the "Gourd People" forum ("A place for all of your lovely fan creations, no matter how emotionally upsetting"), like these insanely twisted comics and what would no doubt have been a hilarious Arthur/Clockwork Orange mashup, had its creator not removed it for legal reasons. Ever wonder what the future holds for Arthur and the gang? Here's a passage from the dystopian fanfic "Revelations from the Aardvark's Mind":

Mom was inside. She didn't say much. She was sitting on the ouch, watching the BSNAD news network in a comatose state.

"Arthur... this family is over... I'm sorry."

Arthur headed back to his room, unsure what to make out of tonight's events. Dad was in jail, D.W. was now locked up, and most of his friends had turned into freaks. He contemplated where he was really going in life, and tried to figure out how to sustain himself in Elwood's tepid economy. At last, he had a plan - but that will have to wait until after a good night's sleep. At least D.W. won't be screaming again.

The Slums of Elwood isn't just about Arthur. There's also a thriving "off-topic" scene fueled by ice-breaking threads like this cool rant about gay people and "climatetards," and Kerry9Story's "let me vent here" post about her harrowing ordeal, which involves being wrongfully banned from a My Little Pony forum what the fuck how could they and oh yeah something else happened last week too:

So first I get locked out of my MLP account and then that shitbag Orion bangs his face into the Wikia forum and some homo PRETENDS TO BE ME and next thing I know I get banned for NO REASON, my account is POLLUTED with shit and then I find out I'm pregnant. That's how it all got this way but I stopped complaining a long time ago, just be careful if Orion001 comes here. I dont even know if its really him if he comes here of if some hacker jacked up his account too and wants to screw the whole thing up like we're all SOL. So yeah, I'm pregnant as of last week and its not my fault.

– Adam "rubber cat" Jameson (@robbercat)

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