10 Amazing Animated Adult Shows

Anyone that still believes cartoons are" just for kids" is living in the past. Though that may have been the case back when Disney, Hanna-Barbera, and Warner Bros. were the only juggernauts of animation, nowadays adult animation is a mainstream success. Thanks in large part to the popularity of the mostly family friendly The Simpsons, adult cartoons are more popular than ever. Below are ten of the very best in no particular order.

Rick and Morty

This Dan Harmon created show on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim is simply superb. Having just finished their third season, Rick and Morty is universally acclaimed as one of the best animated shows on the air right now. The adventures mad scientist Rick and his grandson Morty go on are an ever evolving sci-fi lovers dream. Social media invading characters like Mr. Meeseeks, Pickle Rick, and even the disturbed Jelly Bean king demonstrate just how beloved this show (and its insane characters) are.

Bojack Horseman

Lauded for being both incredibly funny and accurately depicting real world problems like depression, Bojack Horseman is an undisputed Netflix success. Washed up sitcom actor Bojack Horseman is an easy to relate to jerk. He wants to be loved, but does nothing but make bad decisions and push people away. He wants to be famous, but trying hard isn't really something Bojack Horseman does. Straddling the line between comedy and drama, the jokes and emotionally resonant moments never stop coming. With voice acting talents like Amy Sedaris, Aaron Paul and Will Arnett, this show's just getting more popular.

The Venture Bros

Definitely one of the best adult cartoons still running and definitely underappreciated, The Venture Bros. has been making Adult Swim viewers laugh since 2003. Though there's only been six seasons over the past fifteen years, this series has achieved cult status through it's incredible world-building and innovative humor. Starting off as a spoof of shows like Johnny Quest and Scooby Doo, this superhero/supervillain show has progressed into a comedy any fan of animation will love. Watching former boy adventurer Rusty Venture face off against his nemesis the Monarch is always hilarious. With dynamic main characters like Hank, Dean, and the incomparable Brock Samson (voiced by Patrick Warburton) this under the radar show is one you should definitely check out.


International super spy Sterling Archer is an egotistical, self centered, James Bond-esque narcissist that everyone loves to watch. Voiced by voice acting legend H. Jon Benjamin, this animated spy comedy is one of the best shows on television. Though FX's foray into animation hasn't always been pretty (*cough Chozen *cough), Archer has been critically successful for eight seasons. Keeping an audience for eight seasons is an amazing feat on it's own but the fact Archer has "rebooted" multiple seasons and remained successful is its most incredible achievement. Maintaining strong ratings as Sterling Archer transitioned from spy to drug dealer to personal investigator to comatose noir detective is a testament to the creative powerhouses behind this show.

American Dad

Though Seth MacFarlane's Family Guy is an undeniable cultural phenomenon, American Dad is better. A controversial opinion, obviously, but one that is not solely my own. Rather than relying on often annoying cutaway gags or recurring jokes, American Dad relies more on strong writing, character dynamics, and it's breakout character Roger the alien. Watching two minutes of Conway Twitty singing for no reason is annoying and just one of the reasons a lot of viewers have abandoned Family Guy’s increasingly stale appeal. Picked up by TBS after it's cancellation on Fox, American Dad is a long running adult cartoon that any fan of the genre can enjoy.

The Oblongs

This show has Will Ferrell (before he was a universally beloved movie star) voicing a man with no arms and legs. He's hilarious as the head of a poor and deformed family in this brilliantly funny dark comedy. Though this show's run on the WB was considerably shorter than others on this list, The Oblongs is the best adult cartoon you probably missed.

Aqua Teen Hunger Force

Aqua Teen Hunger Force has been the flagship of Adult Swim's adult animation block since the spinoff aired in 2000. Though the series ended in 2015, the adventures of Master Shake, Frylock, and Meatwad throughout their 139 episode run has delighted millions. This show even managed to throw a wrench into the syndication process. Failing to become syndicated after 100 episodes like every show before it, this short form program went by names like Aqua Tv Show Show, Aqua Unit Patrol Squad 1, and Aqua Teen Hunger Force Forever.

Big Mouth

This Netflix original series spearheaded by comedic talent Nick Kroll is about the awkwardness of puberty and is appropriately disgusting. Featuring puberty monsters, songs about awkward topics like menstruation, and a whole episode about a boy's unnatural love for his pillow, this show is NOT for everyone. It is however a strong newcomer to the genre with some serious talent behind it like John Mulaney, Jenny Slate, and Maya Rudolph.

Code Monkeys

Originally airing on G4, Code Monkeys is an 80's style pixel animated show about a video game company. Definitely intended for adults, every episode explores the interesting and often off-putting quirks of the employees of GameVision. Best friends and main characters Dave and Jerry have a hilarious dysfunctional relationship that the show's humor thrives on. What other show has whole episodes dedicated to Steve Wozniak, 420, or a man's inappropriate sexual attachments to his cabbage patch dolls?

Robot Chicken

Though Adult Swim has already dominated this list taking up three of the nine previous spots, not mentioning Robot Chicken would be an incredible disservice. This claymation show parodying anything and everything in pop culture is not only an icon, it boasts an insanely long list of impressive guest stars: Seth MacFarlane, Mila Kunis, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Scarlett Johansson, Nathan Fillion, Michael Ian Black, Conan O'Brien, Bryan Cranston, Emma Stone, Elijah Wood, Freddie Prinze Jr., Zac Efron, Joel McHale, James Marsden, Charlize Theron, Megan Fox, Sandra Oh, Wayne Brady, and Colin Hanks have all lended their voices to the show. And that's only naming a few.

Did your favorite cartoons make the list? Sound off in the comments section below!



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Mar 12, 2018 1:44PM EDT

Thank you for the list! I enjoy watching several of those shows and will check out the ones I have not yet.


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Mar 12, 2018 2:50PM EDT

Fantastic list! I'll have to check out The Ventures Bros and The Oblongs.

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Mar 12, 2018 7:10PM EDT

Thanks asleom!
Omg henneberg you have to! The venture bros and oblongs are hilarious!


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Mar 20, 2018 1:08PM EDT

So many shows that are finished though :( I've enjoyed probably every show on this list already :'(

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Mar 21, 2018 6:16PM EDT

This is a great list! It must have been pretty tough to cut this down to 10 shows with all the great content out there!

If anyone wants some more to check out here they are:

If you like this : Then check out this
Archer: Chozen
Adventure Time: Bravest Warriors
Family Guy: Brickleberry
Happy!: The Maxx
The Last Man on Earth: Moonbeam City
Robot Chicken: Supermansion or Titan Maximum
Scooby Doo: Mike Tyson Mysteries
The Simpsons: Bob's Bugers
Superheroes: The Awesomes

If you still want more choice you could check out some Adult Cartoons lists made by TV Fanboy or myself here:

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