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Best 90s cartoons

  • #10. Rurouni Kenshin: Wandering Samurai

    - IMDb user rating: 8.5
    - Votes: 15,367
    - Years: 1996–1999

    “Rurouni Kenshin: Wandering Samurai” is the TV animated version of the mega-popular manga series “Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Swordsman Romantic Story.” Airing from 1996–1999, the story followed Himura Kenshin as he wandered the Meiji-era countryside and took over a dojo to help protect the country from opium dealers. The show initially aired on Cartoon Network, and is currently enjoying a second life on Netflix.

  • #9. Berserk

    - IMDb user rating: 8.5
    - Votes: 23,359
    - Years: 1997–1998

    The backstory of “Berserk” is not for the faint of heart. The main character Guts was a mercenary whose mother died from the plague. His adopted father tried to kill him, and he was sold into the sex trade. Guts eventually joins a gang of mercenaries called The Band of the Hawk, who fight evil members of the natural and unnatural world. The show only had a short life, lasting just a single season, but inspired video games, music, books, merchandise, films, and a second TV series in 2016.

  • #8. X-Men: The Animated Series

    - IMDb user rating: 8.5
    - Votes: 32,868
    - Years: 1992–1997

    Before the Marvel Universe controlled the big screen, “X-Men: The Animated Series” enjoyed a five-season run on Fox Kids from 1992–1997. For anyone not familiar with the mega-franchise, the “X-Men” are a band of mutants who fight for justice around the world, battling evil humans and mutants alike. Shockingly, the series had a hard time getting to air, and a series of cost-cutting initiatives like hiring Canadian actors helped push it over the edge. Ultimately, the show's producer Haim Saban credits the show for helping him launch the incredibly successful “The Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers” series.

  • #7. Dragon Ball

    - IMDb user rating: 8.5
    - Votes: 86,117
    - Years: 1986–2003

    There are so many different “Dragon Ball” series that the website IMDb dedicates an entire page to trying to explain it. Fans of “Dragon Ball” will remember one of the original offerings: the animated series that launched in 1986 and produced more than 150 episodes. The series was about Son Goku, a young warrior with a monkey tail who searches the universe for the seven Dragon Balls that will grant any wish. He also fights bad guys along the way. The “Dragon Ball” media universe includes video games, movies, theme park rides, comic books, playing cards, and toys.

  • #6. Neon Genesis Evangelion

    - IMDb user rating: 8.6
    - Votes: 36,101
    - Years: 1995–1996

    Another Japanese anime getting a second life on Netflix, “Neon Genesis Evangelion” first aired in 1995, lasting just a single season and 26 episodes. The story follows teenager Shinji Ikari through a post-apocalyptic world in where he and fellow teens pilot giant mechs to fight Angels, alien monsters that are hell-bent on destroying the rest of the planet.

  • #5. Dragon Ball Z

    - IMDb user rating: 8.7
    - Votes: 157,201
    - Years: 1989–2003

    In a continuation of the original “Dragon Ball” series, “Dragon Ball Z” still featured the monkey-tailed Son Goku, but now as an adult and with a son named Gohan as they continue to protect the Earth and attempt to locate the mythic Dragon Balls. The series ran from 1989–2003, and, like its predecessor, inspired games, toys, and movies. It is one of IGN's top 100 animated series of all time.

  • #4. South Park

    - IMDb user rating: 8.7
    - Votes: 297,371
    - Years: 1997–present

    Creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker first brought the world's attention to the kids of “South Park” through a 1995 animated short where Jesus fights Santa Claus. Two years later, they had their own show on Comedy Central. Since then, they have produced 23 seasons and 308 episodes about four kids growing up in South Park, Co., who deal with every pressing issue from gun control and celebrity to bullying and drugs. The show has earned five Primetime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Animation Program and generated millions of dollars in revenue with toys, games, and movies.

  • #3. The Simpsons

    - IMDb user rating: 8.7
    - Votes: 329,465
    - Years: 1989–present

    Created by Matt Groening, “The Simpsons” is one of the most cherished animated shows in television history. It's also a record breaker. Started in 1989 and still running today, the show follows the misadventures of a dysfunctional middle-class family in the made-up town of Springfield. “The Simpsons” holds the record for longest-running animated show of all time, as well as the longest-running scripted show of all time with 659 episodes and counting. Nearly every big name celebrity has guest voiced for the show including Anne Hathaway, Stan Lee, Meryl Streep, Steve Martin, and so many more.

  • #2. Batman: The Animated Series

    - IMDb user rating: 8.9
    - Votes: 73,195
    - Years: 1992–1995

    Premiering in 1992 and running for four seasons, “Batman: The Animated Series” was hailed for its highly stylized animation style and dark tones. The series follows millionaire Bruce Wayne, who turns into the titular Batman by night, fighting crime and a never-ending slew of super-villains. The show is typically ranked as one of the best animated shows of all time and earned multiple awards, including a Primetime Emmy in 1993.

  • #1. Cowboy Bebop

    - IMDb user rating: 8.9
    - Votes: 73,747
    - Years: 1998–1999

    Though it only lasted a single season, “Cowboy Bebop” is consistently hailed one of the best animated shows ever. Following a gang of bounty hunters as they traverse the universe in their space ship the Bebop, the series plays on old Hollywood Western tropes with a soundtrack of American rock-and-roll. The cult popularity of the show continues to this day as Netflix recently announced a live-action reboot of the series starring John Cho as the lead bounty hunter Spike Spiegel.

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