20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With

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20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With

Cartoons during the 2000s were a huge part of your childhood and something that you will never forget. From popular shows like SpongeBob SquarePants and Dexter’s Laboratory to the cartoons that your parents or grandparents watched, these shows shaped your entertainment preferences for the rest of your life. in this article, we will see the 20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With.

Whether you were a fan of Johnny Bravo, The Powerpuff Girls, SpongeBob SquarePants, or any other show on this list, you’ll want to check out these 20 cartoons from the 2000s. Some cartoons may not be as well-known as some of the more popular shows from that decade, but they are definitely worth your time. Some of them are classics that you may have never heard of before, and they are all worth watching.

While some of the cartoons on this list are now forgotten, there are some great shows that you should check out. Whether you’re a fan of Courage the Cowardly Dog or The Powerpuff Girls, there are plenty of 2000s cartoons that you’ll enjoy.

20. The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy

As a black comedy with the Grim Reaper at the center, “The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy” is fondly remembered by those who watched it as children. A perfect example of some of the macabre children’s media that trended in the 2000s, the show first aired in 2001 and ran for a staggering six seasons.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy

As a result of his dim wit, Billy has a sardonic sister, Mandy, and the Grim Reaper inadvertently becomes their lifelong friend, the Grim Reaper. Despite Grim’s repeated schemes to kill off his two companions, he nonetheless gets caught up in their weekly misadventures, although they never truly become the best of pals.

19. Samurai Jack

“Samurai Jack,” an animated series on Cartoon Network from 2001, is a classic cartoon series whose characters battle the shape-shifting demon Aku across multiple realities. Despite working on ’90s classics such as “Dexter’s Laboratory,” Genndy Tartakovsky’s “Samurai Jack” is certainly one of his best works.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Samurai Jack

In a dystopian future in which Aku is the supreme ruler, the titular Samurai Jack teleports the duo at the exact moment when he is about to defeat his nemesis. Despite the nightmarish reality that is the world, Jack finds himself facing legions of robots and demons that stand in the way of his timeline as he struggles to finish his mission.

After four seasons without completing the overarching story that captivated its audiences, the series returned in 2017 with an increasingly grimmer portrayal of the story that critics felt was near-perfect.

18. Courage the Cowardly Dog

It was not uncommon during the early 2000s for cartoons to be joyful and heartwarming. Shows such as Fairly Odd Parents and Spies seldom left you doubting how the episodes would end. Although Courage the Cowardly Dog featured terrifying monsters right out of a Steven King novel or horror film, it wasn’t the most kid-friendly animation available, but it was one of my favorite cartoons of all time.

Courage, which was founded in 1999, has several allusions to John Dilworth’s name on several items. A wandering pink dog lives in a wooden hut in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by real dirt, with two people, a lovely, heavy-set lady named Muriel and her cranky old husband, who always wears his spectacles and cap and despises Courage’s guts.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Courage the Cowardly Dog

Every episode featured unusual animals attempting to catch or annoy Courage’s owners, whether they were alien chickens, enormous bugs in suits, talking cats, or insane barbers. Courage preserved them from these beasts every time, sometimes without their awareness. It’s important to note that not all monsters are evil. A great plotline made Courage great. It had some very creepy monsters, and it was very different from other shows at the time. Also, humor played a huge role in making Courage great.

A lot of comedy and jokes are included in episodes, and Courage tries to communicate with her owners. Many monsters trick Courage’s owners and then try to get what they want. During the animation, the artwork and style stood out. I found the courage to be very creepy and well done, reminding me of an old Dali painting and the music to be even more haunting. It’s probably the only show that can be funny and creepy at the same time.

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17. Johnny Bravo

While Johnny Bravo appeared on a children’s network in the late 1990s, it was a pretty mature cartoon with some adult themes, despite being marketed to kids and being on a children’s channel. Not to mention, Johnny Bravo probably caused a stir among feminists who believed it corrupted the youth and degraded women. It may be partly true, but this is what made Johnny Bravo so enjoyable. It was created in 1997 and was the brainchild of Van Partible and Seth MacFarlane, who went on to write for Family Guy later on.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Johnny Bravo

There is a self-centered, muscular blonde-haired womanizer on the show who always puts his sunglasses on and sounds like Elvis. Getting a number or finding a date is his number one goal in life, although he only succeeds a handful of times, and when he does succeed, things do not turn out as planned. His number one goal is to pick up hot women in public and if he gets lucky, get a number.

While most of the show focused on Johnny going to karate lessons, shopping, or just relaxing around his house, he would use his Bravo charm on an attractive young lady whenever he was going about his daily activities, flexing his muscles in front of her and a hilarious, yet very womanizing pickup line like “Hey baby, how about you and me stare at each other and admire one another’s beauty?”

Despite getting punched in the face or insulted, he continues to hit on women. On a remote island inhabited by sexy tribal women who want to sacrifice him to their God, Johnny and Adam West team up to find his mom, who didn’t arrive home two minutes after she said she would, two minutes after she said she would be back from the grocery store. Johnny’s stupid acting and rejection never get old. In addition to being interesting, the show doesn’t just focus on Johnny hitting on women.

Other plots include Johnny trying to get rid of his pesky neighbor girl Suzy, hanging out at a diner with his friend Pops, and trying to learn karate with Pops. In terms of content and mature humor, it was the only cartoon of its time that could get away with it. It was cool to see Johnny Bravo act so immature and stupid that you always wanted to see what he was going to do. Sadly, it only ran for four seasons before it was canceled. It still appears on Cartoon Network occasionally reruns.

16. House Of Mouse

The House of Mouse existed before Captain America: Civil War before it became Disney’s biggest crossover event. The House of Mouse itself is a nightclub where all the famous Disney faces come out to dance with Minnie, Goofy, Donald, and Daisy. It’s a regular who’s who of Disney royalty, with everyone from Snow White to Simba appearing.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
House Of Mouse

Because Disney has introduced so many fresh faces in recent years, this is the ideal moment to bring this program back. Who wouldn’t want to see Big Hero 6 performers rub shoulders with Zootopia cast members or Arendelle royalty?

15. Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends

There is no doubt that Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends is well known to fans of early 2000s cartoons. Mac and his imaginary friend Bloo make up the story. Mac, 8, is pressured by his mother to give up playing with Bloo, which is part of his childish ways.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends

They find themselves in a safe space when they stumble upon a house full of imaginary friends. Mac can visit Bloo here without worrying about adoption. Each season explores some wild antics that Mac and his friends get into. There are also times when the show is extremely emotional, especially when Mac faces life’s hardships.

14. Ed, Edd N Edd

In the early 2000s, there was another classic cartoon network show called Ed, Edd, and Eddy. The show was created by Danny Antonucci in 1999. A trio of neighborhood boys with the same name, but different spellings of their nicknames, along with their neighborhood friends, were the focus of the show. Each Edward had a different personality which contrasted perfectly with the others.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Ed, Edd N Edd

Ed was the dumb, clueless one, Edd aka double DD was the smart, rational one, who tended to be most serious, and Eddy was the outgoing con man who attempted to scam the other kids. There were no parents on the show; it was like a modern Charlie Brown, with the kids getting into awkward situations and the show being exaggerated. That gave it its charm, as did Eddy’s awkward situations.

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It was laced with sarcasm and humor. A lot of people compare the three Eds with the Three Stooges. The show is amazing, and I used to watch it a lot on Cartoon Network and probably saw every episode. The show ended in 2009 after six seasons. A single season of the show took almost two years to complete, so every episode was given a lot of thought and development. Edd, Edd, ‘n’, Eddy’s theme song was awesome.

13. Duck Dodgers

There are a lot of Looney Tunes characters in Duck Dodgers that fans are familiar with. A long time ago, Daffy Duck’s eponymous protagonist (played by him himself) was accidentally frozen for over three centuries, leaving him in a strange situation. Based on a 1953 theatrical cartoon by the same name, the entire premise of the show is based on that cartoon.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Duck Dodgers

The show features iconic characters such as Wile E.Coyote as a Predator-like alien and Yosemite Sam as K’chutha Sa’am. It’s a show that’s packed with references to pop culture, which makes it appropriate for adults as well.

12. Star Wars: Clone Wars 

As opposed to the recent The Clone Wars, Star Wars: Clone Wars is one of the first animated series to explore the titular conflict between clone troopers and droid armies. The film explores how the conflict affected the Galactic Republic and its weakening influence over several planets after the events of Attack of the Clones.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Star Wars: Clone Wars 

This short-lived show features fan-favorite characters such as Yoda and Obi-Wan Kenobi fighting for supremacy during the war. It is highly recommended for Star Wars fans.

11. Avatar: The Last Airbender

I am extremely impressed with Avatar: The Last Airbender’s execution. The series wasn’t perfect, but the results and storyline were so good that they were irrelevant. As a result of the imaginative and unique world created, in which people could “bend” elements, the show was engaging and utilized to its fullest in every episode.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Avatar: The Last Airbender

A cast of incredibly iconic and well-rounded characters was featured in the show, and each episode built on the last to further the characters’ growth. Throughout Avatar, Aang and his friends are showcased in the most heartwarming way possible; Prince Zuko and his Uncle Iroh’s side story is also very intricate and captivating. As well as Azula, one of the most threatening and competent characters to appear on screen, the show also featured Azula.

As a result of its disastrous TV-to-film adaptation, Avatar is set to be adapted for a Netflix series again, this time as a live-action series. Since the original is already existing and has raised the bar for animated storytelling, even if the long-form storytelling doesn’t work, it doesn’t matter if it’s bad.

10. Teen Titans

Teen Titans was a great example of how Cartoon Network was willing to be daring with its programming compared to many of its rivals, and it was also able to create stories that were both mature and structured for a younger audience. As with most entries on this list, the show focused on a different DC superhero each season, which made its long-form storytelling a great advantage.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Teen Titans

While Raven played a pivotal role in the series, American-style humor mixed with Japanese animation and it didn’t always get boring, regardless of its focus on mature teenage characters. This spin-off featuring the original voice cast isn’t bad it’s quite funny. However, some fans of the original are irritated at it, since the first series never got a proper send-off.

9. Megas XLR

The story of Megas XLR tells of how its two main characters, a mechanic and his best friend Jamie, stumble across a mecha robot from the future called Megas. Megas XLR was one of the underrated kids’ cartoons from the 2000s that is still worth watching today.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Megas XLR

As soon as they learn they must use the robot to defend the earth against the Glorft, they realize they may have bitten off more than they can chew. Adults will be able to appreciate elements such as time travel and a ton of vehicle modifications in the humorous show, which pays homage to mecha anime at the time.

8. The Spectacular Spider-Man

After Disney bought Marvel, Teen Titans weren’t given a complete wrap-up, but it did wrap up some of its storylines in the form of a film. Tragically, The Spectacular Spider-Man never made it past two seasons after Disney bought it.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
The Spectacular Spider-Man

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse might be the best Spider-Man adaptation of all time, and that’s in a world populated by the near-perfect Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. It was evident that the series knew exactly how to approach the character (which has been adapted many times over the years) and managed to balance classics with new concepts superbly.

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7. Invader Zim 

Those who have watched the sci-fi dark comedy series Invader Zim will probably never forget Zim, an irritable yet adorable extraterrestrial, and GIR, his malfunctioning robot companion. Despite thinking he’s doing an excellent job, Zim nearly always fails in comedic ways while enslaving and conquering humanity, sent from the planet Irk.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Invader Zim 

As an outcast and egoistic alien, Zim believes he can redeem himself if he conquers the world. But Dib won’t let him. The series didn’t get a chance to wrap up properly, but the episodes that did air are still worth watching because of their comical battles and the obliviousness of Zim’s neighbors and school administrators.

6. The Powerpuff Girls

There are three girls who, all products of genetic experimentation, fight weekly villains with an array of powers in the comically named city of Townsville. “The Powerpuff Girls” earned its place in the hearts of a generation of fans with its vivid and over-the-top color palette.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
The Powerpuff Girls

“The Powerpuff Girls” appeared to have reached a natural end after its six-season run in 2005. Even though most fans wanted this classic 2000s cartoon to be revived in 2016, critics largely ignored it and audiences lukewarmly reacted, which proves that sometimes it’s best not to mess with perfection.

5. Justice League

In addition to expanding the roster of DC characters, Justice League pretty much put live-action DC universe characters to shame. Although Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman were fantastic, the supporting cast was so strong that the “Big Three” did not feel like the only ones worth paying attention to, which was great.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Justice League

As the show’s audience became more acquainted with obscure villains and heroes, and because it refused to talk down to them, the show’s saga became even more fascinating.

4. Ben 10

Known for its action scenes and inventive alien designs, Ben 10 never failed to keep viewers guessing after its 2005 premiere. Having discovered a piece of alien technology deep in the woods, ten-year-old Ben Tennyson is given the ability to transform into ten different alien creatures.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Ben 10

The series begins with Ben Tennyson, who is named Ben Tennyson. In the original run of the show, the science fiction plot premise blended with comedy kept it running for four seasons, but it didn’t stop there.

3. Phineas And Ferb

To some extent, Phineas and Ferb perfected the formula and running gags, and the more repetition and self-awareness there was, the funnier it became. Phineas and Ferb would have fantastic inventions and adventures as a result of their sister Candance wanting to catch them and get them in trouble (and prove she wasn’t nuts).

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Phineas And Ferb

They also had a pet platypus, Perry, that would fight the slightly sinister and yet utterly charming Dr. Doofenshmirtz. And yes, every episode had music, and great music at that, which must have been very challenging. The Perry side stories always stole the show, though the main story was usually decent. Even though the show was getting too long, it became aware of this and ended on a good note.

2. Dragon Tales

When “Dragon Tales” premiered on PBS in 1999 and released episodes until 2005, it made fantasy popular for younger audiences. In this cartoon, siblings Max and Emmy, as well as Enrique, use a magical dragon scale to travel between a world that is inhabited entirely by dragons and the world we know.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
Dragon Tales

They then become friends with a variety of characters in this whimsical world. “Dragon Tales” was produced by PBS to be an educational show for young viewers. It did so by teaching lessons about honesty and hard work, as well as more direct lessons on basic math and language skills.

1. SpongeBob SquarePants

If you have a television, you will inevitably see Spongebob, regardless of how old you are, where you live, or what you like to watch. Spongebob was created by Stephen Hillenburg in 1999. In the show, the sponge lives in a pineapple in the middle of the ocean with his two neighbors, a starfish named Patrick that lives under a  rock, and Squidward, an irritable squid with an artistic house that resembles a tiki head. Along with Squidward, who works as a cashier at the Krusty Krab, SpongeBob serves burgers called Krabby Patties to his customers.

20 Best 2000s Cartoons You Grew Up With
SpongeBob SquarePants

They are supervised by Mr. Krabs, who is greedy, cheap, and laid back. As SpongeBob and Patrick annoyed Squidward, went on little adventures, Mr. Krabs pinching his pennies, and Plankton trying to steal the Krabby Patty formula, Sandy, a squirrel living in a glass dome, is a tomboy who is always looking for fun. These characters evolved into a classic series as Mr. Krabs pinches his pennies and Plankton attempts to steal the Krabby Patty formula.

For its time, SpongeBob was a very memorable show, with lots of humor and simplicity that could be enjoyed even by adults. It may never again be matched by another cartoon on television. I grew up watching SpongeBob almost every day on Nickelodeon, and reruns were always on. Every time SpongeBob appeared on TV, there was something new to watch, whether it was jellyfish, a fry cook competition, or SpongeBob saving his pals.  

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By Drishty Dwivedi

Drishty Dwivedi is a BCA graduate who specializes in writing about anime and manga. She currently lives in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh. In her spare time, She likes to code, read fiction and draw. Also, she is an animal lover. You can reach out to her at drishtydwivedi75@gmail.com.

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