Due to an upcoming project that should see the light of day sometime this July, I’ve spent my week knee-deep in the Google-Fu, looking up a bunch of cartoons and the characters therein contained, and I’ve come to an important conclusion:  There are a LOT of crap superhero cartoon shows out there in the universe.  Even the ones I have an inexplicable attachment to (‘Kids Super Power Hour with Shazam!’, for one, as well as ‘Freedom Force’) tend towards the lower half of the bell curve, leading to today’s amazing friends query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) awaits a chorus of ‘Batman: The Animated Series’ but hopes for a small thread of ’66 ‘Aquaman’, asking: What is the best superhero cartoon of all time?

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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!And a nice red uniform.

9 Comments

    • The entire DCAU gets my vote as a big tie. Doesn’t matter if it is an early B:TAS episode or one of the epic JLU episodes featuring characters from across time and space from the corners of the DCU that TV usually ignores, I love it all.

      But if I have to pick just one, then JL/JLU (which I consider to be one series despite the name change) definitely gets my vote. It was brilliant, splitting time between stories of the big characters, giving characters non-fans may not know about some screen time and revisiting some others (such as the Batman Beyond “Epilogue” episode), it was a perfect comic book series.

  1. The best of all time is absolutely B:TAS. It simply, objectively is the best. However, JLU, Superman: TAS, X-Men:TAS, and Reboot are all up there. JLA/U is arguably #2, and several folks have already sung its praises. The better animation and more routinely excellent storytelling of B:TAS just slightly edge it out.

    I also have a huge soft spot for the Aquaman ‘toon. It was great, and its delightfully colorful, cheerful setting for the Sea King will always be one of my favorites.

  2. Daniel Langsdale on

    Faster than a rolling O.
    More powerful than a silent E.
    Able to leap a capital T in a single bound.
    It’s a word; it’s a plan; it’s…
    …Letterman!

  3. Admittedly, I have never really watched superhero cartoons, the only ones I can think of that I actually watched is the original TMNT from the 90s and SheRa from the 80s. So, to answer this, I’m gonna go with the first name that popped in my head:

    Duck Dodgers in the 24 1/2 Century!

  4. While Batman and the justice league animated universe are great, the best in my opinion, is absolutely the 90s Spider-man cartoon. It has such a wide variety of characters and never once felt like it was talking down to children. It had excellent story arcs and I have nothing but find nostalgia for the show and it’s rocking theme song.

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