Pop Culture Cartoons

Photo of Tom & Jerry Cartoon - Pop Culture Allusions

This is our listing of the Top Pop Cartoons.  Our Pop Culture Criteria is based upon factors such as Popularity of the Cartoon among intended audiences, references to and from Pop Culture and its ability to transcend and become successful crossovers as well as the Cartoons longevity, crossover appeal, which includes merchandising and overall impression on our society. 

This list of cartoons includes those that were theatrical releases on their own as well as contained within larger releases.  This also includes cartoons that have been on TV, Movies, Comics and Merchandising.  Also, this is not just cartoon characters but instead focuses on cartoon shows. 

Tom and Jerry
1940, Created by Joseph Hanna and William Barbera
This all-time classic cartoon featuring the antics of Tom cat and Jerry mouse.  With production values that were decades ahead of time, the beautiful animation, tremendous music, which was often orchestral accompaniments, and whimsical storylines place Tom & Jerry at the pinnacle of our Pop cartoons peak.



The Bugs Bunny Show
1948, Created by Tex Avery
The rabbit with the iconic catchphrase “what’s up doc” has had much success in many areas.  Although his first appearances were in late 1940’s theatrical releases, his 1960’s TV show “the Bugs Bunny Show” started in 1960 and some version of the show would run for nearly the next 40 years.  Bugs has also had success in film, merchandising and has spawned numerous spinoffs making the show a true Pop Culture experience. 



The Simpsons
1989, Created by Matt Groening, *1987 Tracey Ullman Show
As the longest-running American scripted primetime television series, the show has given us Homer & Bart Simpson who have themselves become part of Pop Culture.  This satirical sitcom follows the Simpsons family life and has received numerous awards and recognitions. 



1950, Created by Charles M. Schulz
Peanuts began as a comic strip appearing in newspapers on October 2, 1950.  Well by 50 years and 17,897 comic strips later Peanuts and its iconic characters are easily recognized throughout the world.  The classic TV specials, books, movies and countless other Pop Culture crossovers cements this cartoon as an all-time classic.  Snoopy even has his own blimp!



South Park
1997, Created by Trey Parker & Matt Stone


Looney Tunes
1930, Created by Warner Bros.


1933, Created by Elzie Segar (Comics) Dave Fleischer (Animation)


The Flintstones
1960, Created by Don Gordon, Ed Benedict, William Hanna & Joseph Barbera
The first primetime network cartoon series



1962, Created by Stan Lee. Steve Ditko


Mickey Mouse
1928, Created by Walt Disney, Ub Iwerks


2005, Created by Duncan Rouleau, Joe Casey, Joe Kelly, Steven T. Seagle


Scooby Doo
1969, Created by Ken Spears, Joe Ruby, Iwao Takamoto


SpongeBob Squarepants
1999, Created by Stephen Hillenburg
Living in a pineapple under the sea, SpongeBob and his friend Patrick (Star) frolic the day away.  From Jelly fishing, to flipping Krabby Patties at the Krusty Krab, SpongeBob always manages to bring joy. 



Family Guy
1999, Created by Seth MacFarlane
This Sunday night show features the life and times of the Griffin family and showcases the talents of Seth MacFarlane.  Known for its edgy comedy, Family Guy has over 350+ episodes to its credit.  Propelled by memorable characters and a large ensemble “cast” the show frequently mixes in Pop Culture references and utilizes numerous celebrity voices that bring the animation to life. 



1962, Created by Buck Biggers & Chet Stover


1995, Created by Atsuko Nishida & Ken Sugimori


Batman & Batman: The Animated Series
1939 & 1992, Created by Bill Finger, Bob Kane and Eric Radomski and Bruce Timm (The Animated Series)


Yogi Bear
1958, Created by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera
Making his debut on the Huckleberry Hound Show, Yogi, and his pal Boo-Boo, would go on to



Road Runner Show
1966, Created by


The Pink Panther
1964, Created by Friz Freleng, David DePatie, Hawley Pratt


The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends *Other Titles Also Used
1959, Created by Jay Ward, Alex Anderson & Bill Scott


Woody Woodpecker
1957 *First Appearance 1940, Created by Walter Lantz and Ben Hardaway


1991, Created by Arlene Klasky, Gábor Csupó and Paul Germain


Dexter’s Laboratory
1996, Created by Genndy Tartakovsky


Merry Melodies
1931, Created by Warner Bros.


Best of the Rest

The Jetsons
1962, Created by Joseph Hanna and William Barbera


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
1984, Created by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird


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