18 Favorite Cartoons of the '80s We Wish Would Come Back (PHOTOS)

Margeaux Baulch Klein | Nov 16, 2015 TV
18 Favorite Cartoons of the '80s We Wish Would Come Back (PHOTOS)

When it comes to cartoons, kids who grew up in the 1980s had it made on Saturday mornings with shows like GarfieldAlvin & The Chipmunks, and The Smurfs. It's not surprising that many of these shows have been rebooted, but no remakes will ever be as good as the originals.


Click through for 20 cartoons from the '80s that will make you nostalgic for your childhood.


Image via Classic Media

  • The Smurfs


    Image via Hanna-Barbera Productions

    Who would have thought that a show about odd little blue creatures who live in a mushroom would last for nine seasons between 1981 to 1990? The Smurfs' popularity remains so great that it was remade as a live-action comedy in 2011.

  • Rainbow Brite


    Image via DHX Media

    How could anyone not love Rainbow Brite? The show epitomized innocence and sweetness with a cast of (literally) colorful characters and silly villains named Murky and Lurky. 

  • Jem


    Image via Hasbro Studios

    Before there was Hannah Montana, there was Jem, an animated musical series about a female music company exec who lives a double life as the lead singer of an all-girl rock band. A live-action movie remake was released in 2015 but didn't fare as well as the original series.

  • Garfield and Friends


    Image via 20th Century Fox

    Based on a popular comic strip, Garfield and Friends was a show that both kids and adults could enjoy together, thanks to the sarcastic wit of the title feline.

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  • Alvin & the Chipmunks


    Image via NBC

    Notable for its catchy music and the character's high-pitched singing voices, the Alvin & the Chipmunks franchise is still going strong decades after its 1983 series premiere with several live-action movies and an updated 2015 TV remake.

  • The Care Bears Family


    Image via DHX Media

    Aimed at little kids with simple plotlines, The Care Bears Family was nonetheless guaranteed to give anyone who watched it warm fuzzy feelings by the end of each episode.

  • Inspector Gadget


    Image via DHX Media

    Matthew Broderick tried his best during the 1999 live-action remake to recreate the slapstick humor of the animated Inspector Gadget, but the magic of the original cartoon version apparently couldn't be imitated.

  • She-Ra: Princess of Power


    Image via Classic Media

    In a decade with few female action heroes, She-Ra gave '80s girls a sense of empowerment.

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  • DuckTales


    Image via Disney Television Animation

    Building on the familiarity of Donald Duck, DuckTales was a series about Donald's three nephews and their Indiana Jones-style adventures searching for treasure.

  • Strawberry Shortcake


    Image via Paramount Pictures

    For some girls in the 1980s, it wasn't just the Strawberry Shortcake TV show that we loved, it was all of the scented dolls, video games, and other Strawberry Shortcake merchandise that we had to have too.

  • Thundercats


    Image via Warner Bros. Television

    Featuring characters that are part-human and part-cat, Thundercats was a traditional good-versus-evil TV show with a futuristic, sci-fi twist.

  • My Little Pony 'n Friends


    Image via Hasbro

    Considering how popular the My Little Pony toys were in the '80s, it's not surprising that the toy's creators would want to capitalize on their popularity with a TV show. What is suprising was that the show was actually quite fun to watch.

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  • The Bugs Bunny/Looney Tunes Comedy Hour


    Image via Warner Bros. Television

    In the '80s, must-see after-school TV included The Bugs Bunny/Looney Tunes Comedy Hour, which featured all of the beloved Looney Tunes characters like Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck in new adventures.

  • Adventures of the Gummi Bears


    Image via Disney Television Animation

    As far as Disney shows go, the Gummi Bears, a series that was loosely inspired by the candy, was one of the better ones to grace television screens in the 1980s.

  • Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers


    Image via Walt Disney Television Animation

    Decades later, we can still remember the theme song to Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers, a cartoon about a pair of crime-solving chipmunk detectives.

  • The Real Ghostbusters

    • Image via Columbia Pictures Television

    Capitalizing on the popularity of the hit 1984 movie, the animated Ghostbusters TV show was just as fun to watch as the original film.

    More from The Stir: 18 Cringeworthy Fashion Accessories From the '80s (PHOTOS)

  • Babar


    Image via Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

    As a prince born into a family of royal elephants, Babar the Elephant was always learning important moral lessons throughout the series, making Babar a show that both entertained and educated '80s kids.

  • A Pup Named Scooby-Doo


    Image via Hanna-Barbera Productions

    Reimagining the characters as young kids, A Pup Named Scooby-Doo updated the classic '60s cartoon with a brand new set of mysteries for Shaggy and Scooby to solve.


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