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The Simpsons and Family Guy Cross Over

39 Best Adult Cartoons for Serious Humour

We’ve got the best adult cartoons, coming to you from a variety of channels and streaming platforms that collectively deliver hour upon hour of gut-busting entertainment. Thanks to the wonders of animation, each show traverses a limitless expanse of creative terrain, exploring both mature and immature themes through a wildly inventive lens. And when a handful of these very same shows leap onto the big screen, it results in some of the best comedies ever made. Along similar lines, top adult cartoons occasionally make for a legendary video game, and in at least one instance, a popular dipping sauce.

Today, we’re sticking to television and highlighting the best adult cartoons ever made (in no particular order). Some are old, others are new, and all are thoroughly amusing. Watch each one for the first time or watch it again, relishing the unforgettable characters and unique animation style. Laughter and enjoyment and plenty of adult humour is guaranteed.

RELATED: Move over superheroes, Muppets might be Disney’s new saviours.

Rick and Morty running away from a horde of monsters
Rick & Morty | Image: Cartoon Network

1. Rick & Morty

Few adult cartoons have straddled multiple demographics and captured the modern zeitgeist like this one here. With the universe literally at their disposal, an alcoholic genius named Rick and his grandson Morty traverse time and space to consistently hilarious effect. Just how hilarious, you ask? For your answer, look no further than the impressive 9.1 ratings on IMDb. Meanwhile, the show’s cultural impact remains palpable, with a best-selling Szechuan sauce and a range of catchphrases to show for it. Wubba Lubba Dub Dub!

First episode date: 2 December 2013
Cast: Justin Roiland, Dan Harmon, Spencer Grammer, Chris Parnell, Sarah Chalke
Creators: Justin Roiland, Dan Harmon
Writers: Justin Roiland, Dan Harmon, Ryan Ridley, Dan Guterman, Jessica Gao, Jeff Loveness
Where to Watch: Netflix

Mabel distracted by a butterfly with Dipper anxiously looking at the tree root shaped like a foot they are walking over in the middle of a forest
Gravity Falls | Image: Disney Channel

2. Gravity Falls

One of the best animations of the last decade, Gravity Falls highlights the adventures of Dipper and Mabel Pines. The story follows two siblings’ journey as they get sent to their great-uncle Stan’s shop in Gravity Falls, Oregon for the summer. They think it will be boring, but that all changes when Dipper finds an odd-looking journal in the woods. The story showcases the secrets they learn about Gravity Falls and its rather odd citizens.

First episode date: 15 June 2012
Final episode date: 15 February 2016
Cast: Alex Hirsch, Kristen Schaal, Jason Ritter, Linda Cardellini, etc.
Creators: Alex Hirsch
Writers: Alex Hirsch, Mark Rizzo, Kristen Schaal, Justin Roiland, Nick Offerman, T.J. Miller, Niki Yang, Will Forte, Jackie Buscarino
Where to Watch: Disney+

Head on shot of Marge, Lisa, Bart, Maggie and Homer
The Simpsons | Image: 20th Television Animation

3. The Simpsons

More than one of the best adult cartoons of all time, “The Simpsons” is a contender for the best show ever made, period. As of the 19th of November, “The Simpsons” aired it’s 757th episode, as part of it’s 35th season and it shows no signs of ending anytime soon. Depicting the escapades of Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie, the best episodes of this massively influential series deliver “Inception”-level layers of satire, with jokes that are as pointed now as they were over 20 years ago. Timeless is the operative word here. “The Simpsons” did it, indeed.

First episode date: 17 December 1989
Cast: Dan Castellaneta, Nancy Cartwright, Julie Kavner, Harry Shearer, Hank Azaria, Yeardley Smith, etc.
Creator: Matt Groening
Writers: Matt Groening, Dan Castellaneta, Conan O’Brien, Sam Simon, James L. Brooks, Al Jean, etc.
Where to Watch: Disney+

Eric, Stan, Kyle, and Kenny beside a SOUTH PARK sign with other characters in the background
South Park | Image: Comedy Central

4. South Park

If modern satire went by any other name, that name would be “South Park.” Since 1997, the flagrantly funny adult cartoon has put every facet of society in its crosshairs and hit the bullseye more often than not. Even after 26 seasons, creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone still manage to pull off a handful of brilliant episodes. Who knew that four foul-mouthed grade-schoolers could render such lasting cultural impact (for better or worse)? The Peabody and Emmy® Award-winning animated series can be found on Paramount + and Apple TV.

First episode date: 13 August 1997
Cast: Trey Parker, Matt Stone, April Stewart, Isaac Hayes, etc.
Creators: Trey Parker, Matt Stone
Writers: Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Jonathan Kimmel, etc.
Where to Watch: Paramount+, Apple TV

Diane managing a stall with the sign ‘LIFE HELP 5¢’ and ‘THE MEMOIRIST IS IN’ with BoJack Horseman as her customer
BoJack Horseman | Image: Netflix

5. BoJack Horseman

Netflix’s first adult cartoon is arguably still the streaming platform’s best, depending on who you ask. Set in a world where talking animals and humans co-exist, it tells the story of BoJack Horseman, a once-popular TV star who now lives in a state of perpetual malaise. As BoJack navigates his way through Hollywood in search of love, success, and a reason for being, all the elements of show business get satirised from every conceivable angle. Spanning 6 seasons, it had a slow start but managed to become a success story in the world of adult animation by the time it wrapped in 2020.

First episode date: 22 August 2014
Final episode date: 31 January 2020
Cast: Will Arnett, Aaron Paul, Amy Sedaris, Alison Brie, etc.
Creator: Raphael Bob-Waksberg
Writers: Raphael Bob-Waksberg, Mehar Sethi, Kate Purdy, Joanna Calo, Elijah Aron, Laura Gutin, etc.
Where to Watch: Netflix

Pam Poovey, Cheryl Tunt, Lana Kane, Malory Archer and Cyril Figgis with an almost naked Sterling Archer in the middle
Archer | Image: FX Networks

6. Archer

On the surface of things, “Archer” appears to be an animated spy saga with comedic elements. Then you actually watch it and realise any semblance of danger takes a constant back seat to all the hilarious personalities. At the heart of the series is Sterling Archer himself, a perennial bachelor and experienced spy, who occasionally kills bad guys when not getting drunk or trying to score. The 14th and final season of Archer will be shown over 3 parts on the 17th of December 2023, in a special titled Archer: Into the Cold.

First episode date: 17 September 2009
Cast: H. Jon Benjamin, Judy Greer, Chris Parnell, Aisha Tyler, Jessica Walters, etc.
Creators: Adam Reed and Matt Thompson
Writers: H. Jon Benjamin, Paul Mayhew-Archer, Aisha Tyler, Keegan-Michael Kay, Fred Armisen, Maggie Wheeler.
Where to Watch: Netflix

Multiple characters of The Venture Bros in space
The Venture Bros | Image: Cartoon Network

7. The Venture Bros

This adult cartoon kicked off in 2004 and after 7 seasons and 81 episodes, became the longest-running original series on Cartoon Network’s late night programming block, Adult Swim. Blending comedy and action, it reimagines comic book and pop culture figures through the lens of an ongoing family saga. At the head of the Venture clan is a former boy-genius turned washed-up scientist named Dr. Rusty Venture. When not squaring off against his incompetent arch-nemesis, Venture grapples on the home front with a crazed bodyguard and his two half-baked sons.

First episode date: 16 February 2003
Final episode date: 7 October 2018
Cast: Doc Hammer, Christopher McCulloch, James Urbaniak, Patrick Warburton, etc.
Creators: Doc Hammer, Christopher McCulloch
Writers: Doc Hammer, Jackson Publik
Where to Watch: Apple TV

Samurai Jack holding a katana
Samurai Jack | Image: Cartoon Network

8. Samurai Jack

Culling from a range of cultural influences, this cartoon series follows Samurai Jack as he travels through time and tries to save the world. In addition to its compelling storyline of the action adventure dystopian genre, the show features downright stunning visuals. Samurai Jack is in the running for one one of the greatest animated shows of all time, garnering massive critical acclaim and winning 8 Primetime Emmy® Awards. After the fourth season, it went on a 13-year hiatus before finally wrapping up in 2017.

First episode date: 10 August 2001
Final episode date: 20 May 2017
Cast: Phil LaMarr, Mako, Grey DeLisle, John DiMaggio, etc.
Creator: Genndy Tartakovsky
Writers: Genndy Tartakovsky, Aaron Springer, Charlie Bean, etc.
Where to Watch: Apple TV, Amazon Prime

Poison Ivy, Sy Borgman, King Shark, Clayface and Dr. Psycho with Harley Quinn in the middle
Harley Quinn | Image: DC Universe

9. Harley Quinn

The chances are you might have seen Margot Robbie playing the infamous queen of Gotham City in the movie ‘Birds of Prey’. If you did, then the Harley Quinn animated series is the one to satisfy all your Batman spin-off needs. As expected, this dark comedy focuses on Harley Quinn, who does everything in her power to make Gotham City her own after her breakup with the Joker. With appearances from prominent sidekicks like Poison Ivy, Clayface, Doctor Psycho, King Shark and Sy Borgman, join Harley as she sets off on her own adventures. Recently renewed for it’s fifth season, this is one of the best cartoons for DC comic fans out there.

First episode date: 29 November 2019
Cast: Kaley Cuoco, Lake Bell, Alan Tudyk, Ron Funches, Diedrich Bader, etc.
Creators: Justin Halpern, Dean Lorey, Patrick Schumacker
Writers: Justin Halpern, Dean Lorey, Paul Dini, Bruce Trimm, Jenny Slate, etc.
Where to Watch: HBO Max, Binge and Foxtel Go

Goldberg, Professor Farnsworth, Hermes Conrad, Philip J. Fry, Leela, Amy Wong and Bender sitting on a couch
Futurama | Image: 20th Television Animation

10. Futurama

Ever wonder what the future holds in store? Lots of ridiculousness, if this show from “The Simpsons” creator Matt Groening is anything to go by. It finds a pizza delivery boy named Philip J. Fry who wakes up in the year 2999 after being cryogenically preserved. Soon enough, he’s falling for a one-eyed ship captain, Leela, and befriending an alcoholic robot called Bender. While this funny cartoon never quite broke through to the mainstream, with only 8 seasons under it’s belt, it retains a very loyal niche following.

First episode date: 28 March 1999
Final episode date: 4 September 2013
Cast: Billy West, John DiMaggio, Katey Sagal, Maurice LaMarche, etc.
Creator: Matt Groening
Writers: Matt Groening, David X. Cohen, Bill Odenkirk, Eric Horsted, etc.
Where to Watch: Disney+, Apple TV

Close up of Huey, Riley, and Robert “Granddad” Freeman
The Boondocks | Image: Cartoon Network

11. The Boondocks

Aaron McGruder’s popular comic strip leapt onto the small screen in 2005, following a dysfunctional black family, The Freemans, as they move into the all-white neighbourhood of Woodcrest. As prescient now as it ever was, the animated comedy took a no-holds-barred approach toward race relations in modern America. The subject matter is cleverly delivered through comedy and satire, securing it’s NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series. Should you check out this acclaimed Adult Swim cartoon, prepare yourself for some explicit language.

First episode date: 6 November 2005
Final episode date: 23 June 2014
Cast: Regina King, John Witherspoon, Cedric Yarbrough, Gary Anthony Williams, etc.
Creators: Aaron McGruder
Writers: Aaron McGruder, Rodney Barnes
Where to Watch: Apple TV

Full shot of Mordecai and Rigby on the road with trees in the background
Regular Show | Image: Cartoon Network

12. Regular Show

Okay so in this one, you got a bird (Mordecai) and a racoon (Rigby) as the protagonists. Need we say anything more? The series follows blue jay and raccoon as they pass their time working as groundskeepers at the local park. It’s not all shovelling leaves and mowing lawns though, the duo makes use of their time by going on surreal and entertaining adventures as they try to stay out of trouble, much to the disappointment of their boss and coworkers. This cartoon for adults is intelligent, poignant and downright hilarious, best known for it’s dark humour, sexual innuendos, violence and mature themes.

First episode date: 14 August 2009
Final episode date: 16 January 2017
Cast: J. G. Quintel, Sam Marin, William Sayers, Mark Hamill, etc.
Creator: J. G. Quintel
Writers: J. G. Quintel, Minty Lewis, Mike Roth, Toby Jones, etc.
Where to Watch: Binge, Apple TV

Full shot of Garnet, Amethyst, Steven Universe, and Pearl in the kitchen
Steven Universe | Image: Cartoon Network

13. Steven Universe

This adult cartoon follows Steven, a half-human, half-Gem as he tries to figure out his powers, spending his days with his human father and other people in the fictional town of Beach City. Steven and his friends are Crystal Gems – magical alien warriors, tasked with protecting the world from evil and save their own kind. With themes centered around love and family, it was critically acclaimed for it’s portrayal of LGBTQ relationships, characterisation of science fiction and voice performances. The series also snagged a GLAAD and Peabody award in 2019.

First episode date: 21 May 2013
Final episode date: 21 January 2019
Cast: Zach Gallison, Deedee Magno Hall, Michaela Ditz, Estelle, etc.
Creator: Rebecca Sugar
Writers: Rebecca Sugar, Ian Jones-Quartey, Matt Braly, Kat Morris, etc.
Where to Watch: Netflix, Stan, Binge, Foxtel Go

Lead guitarist Skwisgaar Skwigelf, drummer Pickles, bass guitarist William Murderface and rhythm guitarist Toki Wartooth with lead singer Nathan Explosion in the middle ripping his shirt off
Metalocalypse | Image: Cartoon Network

14. Metalocalypse

This one is for the death metal fans. If you’re a fan of all things dark, mildly twisted, and rock and roll, Metalocalypse is perfect for you. Watch as the crazy and over-the-top adventures of Dethklok, which happens to be the world’s most successful death metal band. The band has to deal with their fame, all the while being followed by a government organisation out to destroy them. It enjoyed a four season run, spanning 62 episodes, before it was cancelled. In 2013, there was a one-off special which picked up after the season 4 finale, titled Metalocalypse: The Doomstar Requiem.

First episode date: 6 August 2006
Final episode date: 15 July 2012
Cast: Brendon Small, Tommy Blacha, Mark Hamill, Victor Brandt, etc.
Creators: Brendon Small, Tommy Blacha
Writers: Brendon Small, Tommy Blacha, Mark Brooks, Brian Posehn, Kristofor Brown, Janine Ditullio, Bill Braudis
Where to Watch: Apple TV

Full shot of Peter, Stewie, Lois, and Brian Griffin
Family Guy | Image: 20th Television Animation

15. Family Guy

During the opening credits sequence, Peter Griffin and his wife Lois ask aloud: “Where are those good old-fashioned values on which we used to rely?” The answer might very well be: “Anywhere but here.” That’s because this popular adult cartoon from Seth MacFarlane pushes as many envelopes as is humanly possible, all while ripping the sitcom format to shreds. The result is a seemingly endless onslaught of purposefully bad taste. As it turns out, however, bad taste can be pretty damn funny. With 22 seasons to it’s name, Family Guy is known for it’s dark humour and celebrity cameos.

First episode date: 31 January 1999
Cast: Seth MacFarlane, Alex Borstein, Seth Green, Mila Kunis, Patrick Warburton, Mike Henry, etc.
Creator: Seth MacFarlane
Writers: Seth MacFarlane, Alex Borstein, Mike Henry, Danny Smith, etc.
Where to Watch: Disney+, 7Plus

Bob, Louise, Linda, Tina, and Gene Belcher sitting on a couch looking at the laptop on Linda’s lap
Bob’s Burgers | Image: 20th Television Animation

16. Bob’s Burgers

A burger joint owner named Bob Belcher can’t catch a break in this quirky cartoon comedy. When he isn’t trying to wrangle in his wife and kids, Bob’s butting heads with Jimmy Pesto, the obnoxious owner of a competing restaurant. While the first few seasons opened to mixed reviews, later seasons enjoyed much more popularity and commercial success. Awash with memorable characters, a signature visual style, and the occasional song-and-dance number, “Bob’s Burgers” always emanates with heart. Fox’s “Sunday Funday” simply wouldn’t be the same without it.

First episode date: 9 January 2011
Cast: H. Jon Benjamin, Kristen Schaal, Dan Mintz, John Roberts, Larry Murphy, etc.
Creators: Adam Reed, Loren Bouchard
Writers: Loren Bouchard, Wendy Molyneux, Katie Crown, Lizzie Molyneux, Jim Dauterive, Jon Schroeder, etc.
Where to Watch: Disney+, Apple TV

Group photo of Mr. Butlertron, JFK, Cleopatra, Abe Lincoln, Joan of Arc, Gandhi and Principal Scudworth
Clone High | Image: HBO Max

17. Clone High

You might recognise Phil Lord and Christopher Miller as the men behind films like “The Lego Movie” and “21 Jump Street,” but before that, they churned out this short-lived (as in one season) animated comedy. Thanks to the powers of cloning, famous historical figures like Abraham Lincoln, JFK, Joan of Arc, and Gandhi come back to life as teenagers and attend the same high school. As it turns out, teenage Abe is a hopeless romantic, JFK a girlfriend stealer, Joan of Arc a goth girl, and Gandhi a total party animal.

First episode date: 2 November 2002
Final episode date: 2 March 2003
Cast: Bill Lawrence, Christopher Miller, Will Forte, Christa Miller, Neil Flynn, Nicole Sullivan, Michael McDonald
Creators: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller, Bill Lawrence, Chris Miller
Writers: Bill Lawrence, Christopher Miller, Will Forte, etc.
Where to Watch: Binge

Medium shot of Black Dynamite aiming a revolver with one hand
Black Dynamite | Image: Cartoon Network

18. Black Dynamite

Black Dynamite follows ex-C.I.A. Agent and full-time ladies man ‘Black Dynamite’. The animated series is spin-off of the 2009 movie of the same name, although this one takes place in an alternate universe. Black Dynamite chronicles the adventures of the Dynamite and his crew. The action comedy-spoof follows the protagonist as he seeks out to avenge the death of his brother against kung-fu masters, drug-dealing pimps, and The Man. This adult cartoon has been given a MA15+ rating, for it’s depictions of stylised violence, strong sexual references and racial humour.

First episode date: 8 August 2011
Final episode date: 10 January 2015
Cast: Michael Jai White, Byron Minns, Kym Whitley and Tommy Davidson.
Creators: Michael Jai White, Byron Minns
Where to Watch: Stan, Apple TV

Group photo of Jay Bilzerian, Nick and Andrew Glouberman
Big Mouth | Image: Netflix

19. Big Mouth

Co-created by Nick Kroll, this graphic Netflix cartoon delivers an uncompromising exploration of teenage puberty. It follows a group of boys and girls as they respectively grapple with newfound emotional dilemmas and physical arousals. Appearing along the way are two hormone monsters named Maurice and Connie. With a cast and writing team that is nothing short of comedy royalty (mostly Saturday Night Live talent), Big Mouth is currently in it’s seventh season with Netflix announcing it’s renewal for the eighth and final season.

First episode date: 29 September 2017
Cast: Nick Kroll, John Mulaney, Jessi Klein, Jason Mantzoukas, Jenny Slate, Maya Rudolph, Fred Armisen, Jordan Peele.
Creators: Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Mark Levin, Jennifer Flackett
Writers: Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Mark Levin, Jennifer Flackett
Where to Watch: Netflix

Group photo of Phil Ken Sebben, Harvey Birdman and Peter Potamus wearing red caps with men in sunglasses following them
Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law | Image: Cartoon Network

20. Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law

This “Space Ghost” spin-off centres on former superhero Harvey Birdman, who’s reinvented himself as an attorney. When not settling legal matters between once-famous cartoon characters, Birdman answers to his maniacal boss, Phil Ken Sebben (voiced by Stephen Colbert). If you’re in the mood for some nostalgia, Harvey Birdman references characters from the iconic Hanna-Barbera era of animation. The series ended in 2007, though it briefly returned in 2018 for a one-off special called “Harvey Birdman, Attorney General.”

First episode date: 30 December 2000
Final episode date: July 22, 2007
Cast: Gary Cole, Stephen Colbert, John Michael Higgins, Mauric LaMarche, etc.
Creators: Michael Ouweleen, Hanna-Barbera, Erik Richter
Writers: Casper Kelly, Stephen Colbert, Peter MacNicol, Phil LeMarr, Lewis Black, etc.
Where to Watch: Stan, Apple TV

Medium shot of Daria with a deadpan look
Daria | Image: MTV

21. Daria

“Beavis and Butt-Head” regular Daria Morgendorffer got a funny adult cartoon of her own in 1997. Retaining a somewhat droll, albeit highly intelligent disposition, Daria endures as an outsider in a world brimming with dumb high schoolers and patronising adults. A cynical Daria observes the world alongside her best friend, Jane Lane. Originally airing on MTV, the series culminated in 2002 with the TV movie “Daria in ‘Is It College Yet?'”

First episode date: 3 March 1997
Final episode date: 21 January 2002
Cast: Wendy Hoopes, Tracy Grandstaff, Julián Rebolledo, etc.
Creators: Glenn Eichler, Susie Lewis Lynn
Writers: Tracy Grandstaff, Glenn Eichler, Mike Judge, etc.
Where to Watch: Paramount+, Amazon Prime, Apple TV

Sue, Kevin, Bill, Maureen, and Frank Murphy eating at a diner
F is for Family | Image: Netflix

22. F is for Family

Comedian Bill Burr takes us back to the 1970s in this semi-autobiographical Netflix cartoon, which goes predictably big on foul language and crude laughs. It finds him providing the outspoken voice of an Irish-American named Frank Murphy, who lives in the suburbs of Pennsylvania and loves two things with a passion: family and TV. Which one Frank loves more is anyone’s guess. The adult animated series received positive reviews from critics for it’s honest and comical depiction of 1970s America.

First episode date: 18 December 2015
Final episode date: 25 November 2021
Cast: Bill Burr, Laura Dern, Justin Long, Debi, Derryberry, etc.
Creators: Bill Burr, Michael Price
Writers: Bill Burr, Michael Price, Tom Gianas
Where to Watch: Netflix, Apple TV

Group photo of Randall Skeffington, Leonard Powers, Mark Lily, Callie Maggotbone, Dwayne Boneraper and Francis Grimes with the Statue of Liberty in the background
Ugly Americans | Image: Comedy Central

23. Ugly Americans

Set in New York City, Ugly Americans adds every possible freak of nature you can think of to the city. The plot is focused on the protagonist Mark Lilly who is a social worker employed by the Department of Integration. Categorised within the bizzaro fiction genre, Mark’s roommate is a zombie, his boss is a demon and coworker is a wizard. He struggles with his job as he encounters many dangerous companions, causing him to slip from the politically correct slop regularly. This cartoon for adults is perfect for those who enjoy a little dark humour.

First episode date: 17 March 2010
Final episode date: 25 April 2012
Cast: Matt Oberg, Randy Pearlstein, Natasha Leggero, Kurt Metzger, etc.
Creators: David M. Stern, Devin Clark
Writers: Kurt Metzger, Julie Klausner, Natasha Leggero, Bill Hader, etc.
Where to Watch: Paramount+, Apple TV

Space Ghost hosting a late-night talk show called Space Ghost Coast to Coast
Space Ghost Coast to Coast | Image: Cartoon Network

24. Space Ghost Coast to Coast

The titular superhero from a short-lived Hanna-Barbera cartoon has hung up the cape by the time this iconic series kicks off. Now in his 40s, Space Ghost goes back to his real name, Tad Ghostal, and remains in the spotlight by hosting his own late-night talk show. Being interviewed from the earth via video feed is everyone from Denzel Washington to Hulk Hogan to Timothy Leary. The show yielded multiple spin-offs and paved the way for a range of similarly unconventional adult cartoons.

First episode date: 15 April 1994
Final episode date: 31 May 2008
Cast: George Lowe, C. Martin Croker, Andy Merrill
Creators: Mike Lazzo
Writers: Andy Merrill, C. Martin Croker, Matt Maiellaro, Dave Willis, etc.
Where to Watch: Apple TV

Group photo of multiple characters with the Robot Chicken logo at the bottom of the image
Robot Chicken | Image: Cartoon Network

25. Robot Chicken

Throughout its 9 seasons, “Robot Chicken” put all of pop culture in a blender and hit the “pulverise” button. Bouncing from one erratic sketch to the next (sometimes in a matter of seconds), the stop-motion comedy makes for ideal late-night viewing. Actor Seth Green co-created the show and helped rally numerous celebrities for any given 11-12 minute episode.

First episode date: 20 February 2005
Final episode date: 11 April 2022
Cast: Seth Green, Matthew Senreich, Tom Root, etc.
Creators: Seth Green, Matthew Senreich, Mike Fasolo
Writers: Seth Green, Matthew Senreich, Breckin Meyer, Tom Root, etc.
Where to Watch: Apple TV

Master Shake and Frylock hanging out wearing VR headsets and eating snacks
Aqua Teen Hunger Force | Image: Cartoon Network

26. Aqua Teen Hunger Force

“‘Cause we are the Aqua Teens, make the homies say “ho” and the girlies want to scream!” So goes the opening theme song for this edgy and iconic adult cartoon, which follows a meatball, milkshake, and box of french fries on various misadventures. Each season features a rotating door of oddball creatures along with frequent appearances from a loudmouthed, hirsute neighbour named Carl Brutananadilewski. Currently in it’s 12th season, this animated series about the antics of anthropomorphic fast food items is still going strong.

First episode date: 30 December 2000
Cast: Dave Willis, Dana Snyder, Carey Means, Matt Maiellaro, C. Martin Croker, Schoolly D, Mike Schatz, etc.
Creators: Dave Willis, Matt Maiellaro
Writers: Dave Willis, Matt Maiellaro
Where to Watch: Stan, Apple TV

Beavis feeding Butt-head sitting on a pink couch with hearts all over them
Beavis and Butt-Head | Image: MTV

27. Beavis and Butt-Head

Created by Mike Judge, this epoch-making comedy series premiered on MTV in 1993, when the network was actually as cool as it pretended to be. Contrary to preconceived notions, the exploits of two mind-numbingly stupid burnouts made for one of the most iconic and groundbreaking adult cartoons of all time. During it’s initial run, it became MTV’s highest rated show. Since then, the characters of Beavis and Butt-Head have been used to reference any given pair of inseparable, silly, male friends. A somewhat lucrative movie version came out in 1996 and less successful was the 2011 reboot.

First episode date: March 8 1993
Final episode date: June 29 2023
Cast: Mike Judge, Tracy Grandstaff, David Spade
Creator: Mike Judge
Writers: Mike Judge
Where to Watch: Paramount+, Apple TV

Stimpson J. Cat squeezing a fish as it squirts a yellow fluid on a slice of bread held by Ren Höek
The Ren & Stimpy Show | Image: Nickelodeon

28. The Ren & Stimpy Show

You don’t hear much about Ren and Stimpy these days, but the hyperactive Chihuahua and his boneheaded feline friend were quite influential in their time. Crude sight gags and disgusting substances abound as the two get into all kinds of trouble. The show’s distinct animation style and ADD-like pacing would arguably lay the groundwork for subsequent cartoons such as “Spongebob Squarepants.”

First episode date: 11 August 1991
Final episode date: 20 October 1996
Creators: John Kricfalusi, Bob Camp
Cast: John Kricfalusi, Billy West, Bob Camp, Harris Peet, Cheryl Chase, Gary Owens, Mark Hamill, Tommy Davidson
Writers: John Kricfalusi, Bob Camp, Lynne Naylor, William Wray, etc.
Where to Watch: Amazon Prime

Julian, Bubbles and Ricky talking with each other
Trailer Park Boys: The Animated Series | Image: Netflix

29. Trailer Park Boys: The Animated Series

This Canadian adult cartoon is an animated spin-off of the mockumentary of the same name. The Trailer Park Boys follows the misadventures of a group of trailer park residents. Most of them are ex-convicts and general hillbillies who live in the fictional Sunnyvale Trailer Park in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. Spanning 12 seasons, you can catch all the necked goodness on Netflix so crack open a beer or get onto the rumbo’s for a ride into proper hooliganism.

First episode date: 31 March 2019
Final episode date: 22 May 2020
Cast: Mike Smith, Robb Wells, John Paul Tremblay
Creators: Mike Smith, Robb Wells, John Paul Tremblay
Writers: Mike Smith, Robb Wells, John Paul Tremblay, Norm Hiscock, Michael Rowe
Where to Watch: Netflix

Connie Cunaman, Ethel Anderson, Malloy, Woodrow Johnson, Steve Williams and Denzel Jackson using firearms and setting the Brickleberry National Park on fire
Brickleberry | Image: Comedy Central

30. Brickleberry

Comedy Central star Daniel Tosh was at the height of his fame when he lent his voice to this predictably crude adult cartoon, which he also executive produced. The action takes place at Brickleberry National Park, where idiosyncratic park rangers engage in all sorts of subversive antics. It ran for a mere 3 seasons on Comedy Central before getting canned 2015, though a one hour special was released on Netflix in 2020.

First episode date: 25 September 2012
Final episode date: 14 April 2015
Cast: Roger Black, Waco O’Guin, Daniel Tosh, Jerry Minor, Eric
Creators: Roger Black, Waco O’Guin
Writers: Roger Black, Waco O’Guin, Eric Rogers, Rocky Russo, etc.
Where to Watch: Disney+, Apple TV

Group photo of Roger, Stan Smith, Steve Smith, Francine Smith holding Klaus the fish, and Hayley Smith
American Dad! | Image: Fox

31. American Dad!

Proving he was no one-trick pony, Seth MacFarlane unleashed this adult cartoon comedy in 2005. Like “Family Guy”, “American Dad” simultaneously employs and skewers the sitcom format, bringing viewers into the home of CIA operative Stan Smith. It’s here that we meet Stan’s lovely wife, his nerdy son, his unruly daughter, an outrageously unpredictable alien named Roger and to top it all off, an intelligent, East German gold fish, Klaus. With the humour emerging from the quirky characters, absurd plot lines and dark humour, this classic animated series is another feather in MacFarlane’s cap.

First episode date: 6 February 2005
Cast: Seth MacFarlane, Wendy Schaal, Scott Grimes, Rachel MacFarlane, Dee Bradley Baker, etc.
Creators: Seth MacFarlane, Mike Barker, Matt Weitzman
Writers: Seth MacFarlane, Mike Barker, Matt Weitzman, Erik Durbin, etc.
Where to Watch: Disney+, Apple TV

Group photo of King of the Hill characters
King of the Hill | Image: Fox

32. King of the Hill

On the heels of “Beavis and Butt-Head,” comedy legend Mike Judge co-created this understated animated series. Set in the fictional city of Arlen, Texas, it chronicles the exploits of propane salesman Hank Hill, his loveable family, and his wacky neighbours. The show ran on Fox for an impressive 13 seasons before calling it quits in 2009. King of the Hill is one of the best, funny cartoons for adults. In fact, Time Magazine listed “King of the Hill” in it’s 2007 article on “The 100 Greatest TV Shows of All Time”. Since it’s initial run, this spin-off has garnered a loyal cult following, finding it’s humour in the mundane adventures of suburban life.

First episode date: January 12, 1997
Final episode date: May 6, 2010
Cast: Mike Judge, Brittany Murphy, Pamela Adlon, Kathy Najimy, Stephen Root, etc.
Creators: Mike Judge, Greg Daniels
Where to Watch: Disney+

Elfo, Princess Bean, and Lucy sitting on an open castle tower window looking at the sunrise
Disenchantment | Image: Netflix

33. Disenchantment

Matt Groening took a step into the past after The Simpsons and Futurama, with Disenchantment. He co-created this adult cartoon fantasy sitcom for Netflix. Upending a range of classic fairy tale tropes, it sends a rebellious, albeit caring, alcoholic princess on various misadventures. Along for the ride is a demon named Luci and an elf named Elfo. Each episode comes to life by way of Groening’s signature animation style, lending itself to the very niche animated historical fantasy genre.

First episode date: 17 August 2018
Final episode date: September 1, 2023
Cast: Abbi Jacobson, Nat Faxon, John DiMaggio, Eric André, Billy West, Maurice LeMarche, etc.
Creator: Matt Groening
Writers: Matt Groening, Josh Weinstein, Reid Harrison
Where to Watch: Netflix

Cuddle, Giggles, Nutty, Lumpy, and Flaky running away
Happy Tree Friends | Image: Mondo Media

34. Happy Tree Friends

This cartoon comedy might look like a children’s web show at first glance, but hovering just beyond the adorable surface is an all-you-can-eat buffet of graphic violence and constant death. That helps explain the unexpected Internet success and loyal cult following. In the series, a number of dim-witted woodland creatures follow their worst instincts to disastrous results, with each character experiencing a gruesome death at the end of every episode but return alive and well by the start of the next one.

First episode date: 24 December 1999
Final episode date: 22 December 2016
Cast: Kenn Navarro, Warren Graff, Aubrey Ankrum, Rhode Montijo, etc.
Creators: Aubrey Ankrum, Kenn Navarro, Rhode Montijo
Writers: Kenn Navarro, Ken Pontac, Warren Gaff, Aubrey Ankrum, etc.
Where to Watch: Crunchyroll

Group photo of Wooldoor Sockbat, Toot Braunstein, Ling-Ling, Foxxy Love, Xandir P. Wifflebottom, Princess Clara, Spanky Ham and Captain Hero
Drawn Together | Image: Comedy Central

35. Drawn Together

The early naughties saw an explosion of reality TV, so it was only a matter of time before an adult cartoon came along to skewer the genre. That cartoon was “Drawn Together,” and it put 8 animated archetypes under one roof to raunchy results. These characters parodied personalities you would find in a reality show, from a chauvinistic superhero to a pampered princess. Should you dig this one out of the vaults, be forewarned: it’s not for the faint of heart. In fact, we’re pretty sure it would never get made today.

First episode date: 27 October 2004
Final episode date: 14 November 2007
Cast: Cree Summer, Tara Strong, Jess Harnell, Jack Plotnick, etc.
Creators: Dave Jeser, Matt Silverstein
Writers: Dave Jeser, Matt Silverstein, Bill Freiberger, Jordan Young, etc.
Where to Watch: Paramount+, Apple TV, Amazon Prime

Gina Jabowski, Bullet, Chief Randall Crawford and Gerald Fitzgerald at the door entrance enforcing arrest
Paradise PD | Image: Netflix

36. Paradise PD

Welcome to the crime-riddled, fictional town of Paradise, where the cops are bad on an epic scale. And not bad in the corrupt sense of the word, but in the truly incompetent sense. We have an inept protagonist (Kevin), whose mother is the mayor of Paradise and father is the Chief of Police. Not only are his cop colleagues violent and traumatised but he also has a dog who is a drug addict. Naturally, it all makes for essential binge-watching over on Netflix. Paradise PD enjoyed a 4 season run before calling it quits in 2022.

First episode date: 31 August 2018
Final episode date: 16 December 2022
Cast: Roger Black, Waco O’Guin, Cedric Yarbrough, Dana Snyder, Tom Kenny, Sarah Chalke
Creators: Roger Black, Waco O’Guin
Writers: Roger Black, Waco O’Guin
Where to Watch: Netflix

Group photo of Birdie, Molly Tillerman, Owen Tillerman, Paige Hunter, Cole Tillerman, Shampagne the dog, Helen, and Bitsy Brandenham at the Central Park
Central Park | Image: Apple TV+

37. Central Park

One of the newest cartoon’s on this list Central Park debuted in 2020 with much applause. As the name suggests the series depicts a family living in Central Park, New York City, where they must save it from a greedy land developer. The families live change when an elderly heiress named Bitsy Brandenham, plans to buy up all the land in Central Park and turn it into more apartments, shops and restaurants. Narrated from the fourth wall perspective of the park busker, this latest adult animated series has so far received positive reviews.

First episode date: 29 May 2020
Cast: Emmy Raver Lapman, Kristen Bell, Josh Gad, Titus Burgess, Stanley Tucci, Leslie Odom Jr., Kathryn Hann, etc.
Creators: Josh Gad, Loren Bouchard, Nora Smith
Writers: Josh Gad, Loren Bouchard
Where to Watch: Apple TV

Group photo Lil Cuyler, Early Cuyler, Granny Cuyler, Russell “Rusty” Cuyler and Dan Halen with the Squidbillies logo at the upper left corner
Squidbillies | Image: Cartoon Network

38. Squidbillies

Leave it to Adult Swim to air a cartoon comedy about anthropomorphic hillbilly mud squids in the mountains of Georgia. As one might expect, “Squidbillies” delivers no shortage of redneck humour, as alcoholic patriarch Early Cuyler hurls insults and objects at the various members of his family. If his sister Lil doesn’t hear him, it’s because she’s passed in the corner, lying in a pool of her own vomit. Yeah, it’s that kind of show. Narrated by the show’s creater, Dave Willis, Squidbillies references gambling, violence and sexual themes.

First episode date: 16 October 2005
Final episode date: 13 December 2010
Cast: Stuart Daniel Baker, Dana Snyder, Tracy Morgan, Daniel McDevitt, etc.
Creators: Dave Willis, Jim Fortier, Matt Maiellaro
Writers: Dave Willis, Jim Fortier, Matt Maiellaro
Where to Watch: Stan, Apple TV

Group photo of Cleveland Brown Jr., Cleveland Brown, Rallo Tubbs, Donna Tubbs and Roberta Tubbs
The Cleveland Show | Image: Fox

39. The Cleveland Show

Expanding upon the “Family Guy” universe, this offbeat and uneven cartoon sitcom sends Cleveland Brown from Quahog, Rhode Island, to Stoolbend, Virginia, where he pursues a former high school crush. While the series did run for four seasons, it failed to garner the same levels of adoration as its wildly popular predecessor. Nevertheless, any show featuring director David Lynch in a semi-recurring role ranks high in our book.

First episode date: 27 September 2009
Final episode date: 19 May 2013
Cast: Mike Henry, Sanaa Lathan, Kevin Michael Richardson, Reagan-Gomez Preston, Jason Sudeikis.
Creators: Mike Henry, Seth MacFarlane, Richard Appel
Writers: Mike Henry, Seth MacFarlane, Richard Appel, Kirker Butler, etc.
Where to Watch: Disney+, Apple TV

General FAQ

What cartoons are popular now?

Currently, some of the most popular cartoons are as follows: Bob's Burgers, Rick & Morty, Spongebob Squarepants, Archer, South Park, Avatar: The Last Airbender, and others.

What is the highest rated cartoon?

On IMDb, the highest-rated cartoon in animated history is Rick & Morty with a 9.1 rating and over 579,175 votes.

What was the first cartoon for adults?

While adults have enjoyed and continue to enjoy cartoons of all varieties, The Flinstones was the first animated series to debut in a primetime slot.