I've also seen him jump and his eyes widen when he has watched certain scenes in "Finding Nemo" and other supposedly "safe" movies that have scary parts in them. When I re-watch these cartoons through the innocent eyes of a 3 year old, I realize how scary things can be. Tonight "Peter Pan" was on, and I watched him soak in the scenes of Captain Hook smoking 2 cigars at once, shooting (and killing) a pirate, and saying "you idiot!" Earlier today he saw a scene from "Ice Age 2" where there is a gay animal couple (I didn't even see it coming). I know I can't protect him forever, but for heaven's sake, he's only 3! So, when is the right time to expose him to things like this? You would think a cartoon would be safe!
I do know that I definitely see in other kids (also) the effects of cartoons and movies. I have seen young girls (3-5 years old) cop attitudes and look at themselves more in the mirror after watching The Disney Channel (usually teen shows). I've seen young boys act just a little more violently after watching certain cartoons. It is scary. We have a big responsibility as parents to protect our children from growing up too fast. So for now, we'll continue to skip getting cable, and limit the boy's viewing to things we've already seen (targeted for their ages). I guess I just want to cherish the purity of the boy's minds, at least while I can.