Rick and Morty: The top ten comedy cartoons for adults, rankedHeads up, SuperMansion superfan! The League of Freedom returned for the second half of its third season recently with another mansion-load of superhero lunacy. From the creators of the Adult Swim fave Robot Chicken, the stop-motion animated show brings with it the same smart and cynical humor, as a group of irrelevant superheroes struggle to remain significant in the modern age. In an era of DC & Marvel mania, Supermansion uses its animated format to poke fun at classic superhero tropes. To mark the release of S3B and celebrate the genre as a whole, we’ve put together a list of the best adult cartoon comedies of all time, ranked for your viewing pleasure. Some old, some new – all side-splittingly good.
Aqua Teen Hunger Force (2000 – 2015)
Another Adult Swim mainstay, Dave Willis and Matt Maiellaro’s show ended a few years back, thus marking “the end of an era for TV animation”. The Aqua Teen Hunger Force were three anthropomorphic fast food creatures living in South Jersey: a floating container of french fries named Frylock, a pistachio milkshake called Master Shake, and Meatwad, nothing more than a ball of meat. Funny, smart, and cutting, the show’s entire premise was based around its aimlessness.
Bob’s Burgers (2011 – )
Bob Belcher – along with his wife and three kids – try to keep the family together by running Bob’s dream restaurant. Despite a slow start, the Fox show’s offbeat comedy, class commentary, and family warmth have seen the adult cartoon develop a strong cult following over the years.
Archer (2009 – )
It’s time to break out the Scotch and cocaine supply, folks! Adam Reed’s cult animated spy series centers on super-agent Sterling Archer – the narcissistic cad you want on your team. While there have been many spy spoofs in the past, there are none so filthy, funny, and outrageously violent as Archer. If you like your comedy mixed with unexpected references to high-brow literature, this is right up your sinister street.
Robot Chicken (2001 – )
Adult Swim’s titular stop-motion comedy has warped our childhood for years, taking shots at pop culture with thick and fast references in sketches lampooning everything from toys to movies to games to fads. Nothing’s safe from the fast-paced, satirical bite of Seth Green (Austin Powers in Goldmember) and Matthew Senreich’s comedy hit.
The Ren & Stimpy Show (1991 – 1996)
It’s been over a quarter of a century since this show traumatized us as children and we’re still not over it, proving the 90s were the best years for twisted, adult animation. Comprising bleak and surreal imagery, heavy pacing, and curiously funny storylines, the show was tied together by the macabre misadventures of the hyper chihuahua and the dumbass cat we all knew as Ren & Stimpy. “Happy, happy, joy, joy!”
Daria (1997 – 2001)
Gone but not forgotten, Daria was the ultimate 90s grunge, teen angst staple, following the brainy sardonic Daria Morgendorffer (Tracy Grandstaff) as she proudly upheld a cynical view of the idiotic world around her.
BoJack Horseman (2014 – )
Netflix’s animated show about a washed-up, alcoholic equine actor gallops into the higher end of this list thanks to its cynical satire and deconstructions of Hollywood. The storylines launch into some seriously contemplative terrority, leaving viewers part crying, part laughing, and part questioning how a show about a down-and-out horse could be so damn affecting.
The Big Lez Show (2012 – )
Jarrad Wright’s comedy web series has become something of a stoner cult hit over the past several years, filled with crude Australian humor that coats the adventures of humanoid alien Big Lez as he finds himself in outlandish situations. It’s twisted, crass, and LOL funny. If ya know, ya know, “you fucken druggo!”
Rick and Morty (2013 – )
Wubba lubba dub dub! Adult Swim’s Rick and Morty has gone from a quirky sci-fi spoof to an absolute modern-age juggernaut, following the depraved outerspace misadventures of the narcissistic, alcoholic scientist Rick and his nervously disposed grandson, Morty. The question now is: when, oh when, will season four finally squanch our screens? Hopefully squancher rather than squancher!
South Park (1997 – )
While some seasons have been stronger than others, we felt Trey Parker & Matt Stone’s long-running satirical show should take the #1 spot. Spanning over two decades, South Park follows the bizarre misadventures of Stan, Kyle, Eric, and Kenny (not to forget Randy Marsh, who undoubtedly deserves a special mention).
Having matured at the same pace as the humor of the show, we’ve seen it progress from a basic profanity-filled animation to a dark and surreal cultural phenomenon that satirizes a wide range of modern and controversial topics with dark humor and a strong avoidance to partiality, making it one of the smartest adult comedy cartoons in TV history.