This is truly the year of digital 2D animation! Paint & Stick is a plugin for After effects which allows you to animate and draw directly IN After Effects! I have not tried it yet but it looks wonderful! You can download a public beta of Paint & Stick 1.5Â here.
From the site:
RubberHose is the fastest way to rig and animate a character in After Effects. It’s an open system built specifically for handling the frustrating parts of animation while letting you stay in control of your character’s performance and the life you bring to it. You will save time and you will actually enjoy the process. Guaranteed.